I am tired of fan fiction authors “borrowing” other authors’ ideas and going on to receive major book and movie deals.
Former fan fiction writer Cassandra Clare is back in some trouble. It’s not the first time she has been caught up in a plagiarism scandal, and yet it doesn’t seem to have damaged her career.
Now it is paranormal romance author Sherrilyn Kenyon who is taking her to court:
The bestselling fantasy author of the Dark-Hunter books is seeking damages from her fellow bestseller for allegedly using her ideas in the Shadowhunter series
In Clare’s defence this time, I really don’t think it is the worst incident of this that has ever happened. There is a NYT bestselling author who is extremely popular at the moment, and who has very openly copied (or perhaps “lovingly rewritten”) numerous authors’ books.
She has created two series that are a mashup of a few other books, to the point I think there really is a case for a lawsuit or four.
In fact, this other person has upset some so much I’ve been contacted by a few authors asking me what they think they should do. (A note to authors: don’t ask me! I sympathise, but I have NO IDEA how to help you!)
But when it comes down to it, there aren’t that many wholly original books in genre fiction, so it gets a bit hard to determine when an idea is truly stolen.
Ironically, look what is on the cover of the newest RT Magazine:
Plagiarism and the murky ethics of pull-to-publish fan fiction don’t seem to be hurting anyone’s careers yet – except for the original creators’!