April 23, 2012

A Writer's Life - Thieves among us

What's the worst thing that could possibly happen to a writer?
Writer's block?
Awful reviews?
No sales?
While these are all hazards of authorship they are obstacles that, with a bit of schmoozing your muse, your editor and your potential readership, may be overcome.

So, what is the worst thing then?
If someone boldly steals from you! Some might call me slightly paranoid about not sharing all that much information about my WIP's, but honestly, until it's published you're more likely to find out about my weight than the story in my book. A few hints here and there? Sure. No harm in that. But will I ever discuss important threads that basically make (or break) the premise? Let's put it this way - if you threatened to break my kneecaps I might tell you my weight, but even if you held a burning match to my favorite teddy bear, my lips would stay sealed if you inquired about "the plot". Poor teddy, I know!

Suffice to say, a little paranoia never hurts. But what about writing on platforms such as this one? A blog!

Every couple of weeks another book blogger will rant about discovering how someone has stolen their review(s) for evil purposes on their own blogs (or even worse, linked up to some obscure websites). Plagiarism anyone?

Fortunately this hasn't happened to me so far *knock on wood* and despite this little voice telling me that maybe my reviews aren't worth stealing (aka they suck) I think what might save me is that I review mostly non fiction and a lot of people don't really read much non fiction, not to mention reviews about non fiction books. That's my pet theory, anyway.

The point is - bloggers put there heart and soul into their blogs and if we find out that a black blogging sheep has stolen from us we get a little ... well, cranky! Personally I'd let loose the Hounds of Hell the second I find my blog content on another site, but the usual way would be to contact the thieving piece of a *insert expletive of choice* and tell him/her to take the post down, like, NOW.

I think the worst example of someone stealing reviews must have been the one committed by a person who's not only a blogger but also an author, of I think historic romance novels. Admittedly I don't remember the blog, and I wouldn't share here publicly anyway. Imagine my shock! Bad enough that anyone would steal blog content, but a writer!? That nearly sent me into cardiac arrest. And, after my heart assumed a remotely normal beating pattern again, all I could think of was ... where did that lady *insert sarcasm* get the ideas for her books from? I don't think I really want to know the answer to that.

Thing is, I decided to do some googling to find out how to put up a little stumbling stone for wannabe-thieves on my blog. Go ahead and try to right-click with your mouse ... see? Ha. [followup a day later - as there are still half a dozen other ways to copy & paste I have deactivated the function now ... I'll simply borrow Amy's Hounds of Hell if someone shows sticky fingers] If someone is too lazy to write their own reviews, I doubt they would make the effort to copy word for word if they can't do the two-mouse-clicks-shuffle. And off the black sheep go to greener pastures.

Are you a blogger and has anyone ever stolen blog content from you? Are you using MyFreeCopyright?  Or maybe using a widget which makes right-click-copying impossible? Comment away!

13 comments:

  1. Oh, my god. This is how i feel exactly about posting stuff about my book! -or more exactly my 3 different ideas which i think i could turn into something :)

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    1. And remember, just because you think you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you. I've been watching to many X-Files episodes, I guess. Then again ...

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  2. Erm... I'm sorry to say but I CAN still copy you, I just highlight and press ctrl+c and it works just fine. Plus, ctrl + c is quicker. Thought you should know. See?

    ''Thing is, I decided to do some googling to find out how to put up a little stumbling stone for wannabe-thieves on my blog. Go ahead and try to right-click with your mouse ... see? Ha. If someone is too lazy to write their own reviews, I doubt they would make the effort to copy word for word if they can't do the two-mouse-clicks-shuffle. And off the black sheep go to greener pastures.''

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    1. I copied too just as Vickie said-- because I was asking why you were bringing my dogs into it (LOL! I'm kidding of course- they are only sometimes the hounds of hell)

      Personally I'd let loose the hounds of Hell

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  3. That's the thing with keyboard shortcuts....
    Sabrina just told me about the twitter shitstorm re plagiarism today, so your post is well timed (coincidence or on purpose?).
    I have never thought about that topic before, our reviews don't suck,Birgit, but we are not reviewing the shit hot books that everybody wants to read about, so they are not worth stealing.
    Still, a bit of protection doesn't hurt.

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    1. Actually I already wrote the post last week as I often prepare posts in advance when an idea strikes.
      And you're right about the kind of books we review ... we're not reading for the masses, that's for sure.

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  4. ~ I personally read books that friends tell me I might like or books that perk my interest - I don't run out an buy the latest release unless its a book I was waiting on to complete a series I have already read - I'm not much of a follower to be honest .... I love to write poetry and read books but I don't think my poetry would be safe if I were to post it so I choose not to based on the fact I would be devastated if someone took it and claimed it as their own.

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  5. I hate it when people deactivate the right click, because I don't just use it to copypaste, but to erm.. change the way blogs are displayed. I have issues with my eyes and often have to change the font-face and color and stuff like this. XD Just saying. ;]

    This whole thing is quite sad, and heck.. well. Nothing to add to what's already been said atm.

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    1. (And just because I had the time, LOL. This is what your blog looks like for me when I leave comments: http://yfrog.com/oeqwrmkj )

      *grin*

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    2. What the ... you didn't just prune the garden, you wiped it out!? I'll never let YOU water my plants EVER AGAIN.

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    3. MY EYES, it's all my eyes' fault!! XD I could, if you'd like, add a flowery-background-image?

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