Hey, Christine Feehan! You don’t own the Carpathians!

Ивано-Франковская_область_Горно-лыжный_курорт_Буковель Bukovel Carptahian Mountains Ukraine

Ukraine’s Bukovel ski resort in—you guessed it!—the Carpathian Mountains.

I’ve been too preoccupied with other things to bother posting about this, but now Christine Feehan (as in the NYT-bestselling author credited with inventing the paranormal romance genre back in the 1990s) has now confirmed it: she has personally filed applications to obtain trademarks for all the words associated with her various books series. (#Cockygate, anyone?)

The word everyone has gone mad over (for obvious reasons) is “Dark”—as in, she’s trying to ban anyone from using Dark in their book titles from now on.

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Me on a farm in my grandfather’s village in the foothills of the—you guessed it!—Carpathians. The woman is his cousin, Pani Anna, and that’s her farm.

However, I’m here to rant about the issue of her also filing to appropriate the word “Carpathian”.

The Carpathians are a mountain range in Eastern Europe, covering seven countries: Ukraine, Romania, Poland, Slovakia, Czechia, Hungary and Serbia. My family is from the Ukrainian Carpathians, and have a distinct culture and fiercely proud heritage. Now, if I wanted to write a series of any sort with the word Carpathian in it, Feehan can take me to court. (Feehan is estimated to be worth millions.)

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A bear I saw in the Carpathians in September this year. Because—yes—the Carpathians still exist, and they still don’t belong to Christine Feehan.

On Twitter I mentioned that the situation has shades of the American bar owner who obtained the trademark for the Fijian word Bula, forcing the Fijian Government to take him to court to try and get the rights to their own word back.

Huculy_1933,_Verkhovyna_district Hutsuls Ukrainian Carpathian Mountains

The Ukrainian Hutsul people of the Carpathian Mountains.

People randomly trademarking stuff is disgusting, selfish, and totally bloody unnecessary. Having some author in California claim ownership of my heritage just because she named her rapey fictional vampires after my family’s homeland makes me sick.

Nora Roberts sues Brazilian author, cites ‘multi-plagiarism’.

Article link:

Nora Roberts sues Brazilian author, cites ‘multi-plagiarism’

I’m glad someone with this much power behind them is doing something about the spectacular acts of plagiarism committed by Cristiane Serruya, who – it was recently discovered – was plagiarising dozens upon dozens of books by well-known romance authors.

Serruya even had the audacity to enter her stolen work in the RITA Awards.

You can read more about what happened HERE.

 

The Week: 1st – 7th April

Happy Canberra Wine Week! The – erm – week goes from the 5th to the 14th, which isn’t exactly a week as much as it is an excuse to have two weekends of drinking wine!

I have a big announcement to make in a few days…

My review of Need Me, Cowboy (Copper Ridge #6) by Maisey Yates

need me, cowboy (copper ridge #6) by maisey yates

Romance.com.au

and

Harlequin’s Free Reads

Harlequin Publishing Logo

“Plagiarism, ‘book-stuffing’, clickfarms… the rotten side of self-publishing.”

Amazon kindle Ebooks

April Fools’ Day

800px-Elephant_side-view_Kruger april fool's day prank lioness cub kruger national park south africa 2017

“Plagiarism, ‘book-stuffing’, clickfarms… the rotten side of self-publishing.”

Plagiarism, “book-stuffing”, clickfarms… the rotten side of self-publishing.

Scams are rife, particularly when some authors can rake in thousands each month – but high-profile victims of plagiarism warn ‘day of reckoning is coming’.

The Guardian has a fantastic summary of recent scams and all that plagiarism currently going on in the self-publishing world.

I would strongly recommend writers and readers alike give the article linked above a read.

And I would strongly recommend against using Amazon’s dodgy Kindle Unlimited/KDP Select reading/publishing platform (as opposed to Kindle Direct Publishing, which I have no issue with). As a writer, your work is being buried by scammers. As a reader, your money is going to those scammers, and you’re helping to harm genuine authors.

The latest in the current plagiarism drama.

Edited to add a link to a lengthy article covering this in detail, if you have the time to read it.

Here’s an updated look at what Cristiane Serruya has plagiarised. The list of books/articles/etc. she has stolen from keeps on growing,

For heaven’s sake, she even plagiarised Outlander!

What is so incredible is that she got away with it for so long. It is also incredible that so many book bloggers – people who should have recognised these original books – were giving her four and five-star reviews and not even noticing!

Also incredible: Serruya was not only entered in the RITA Awards, but was a judge!

Cristiane Serruya has plagiarism scandal 1

Cristiane Serruya has plagiarism scandal 2

Plagiarism Update

Yesterday, I mentioned that Courtney Milan was plagiarised. Well, that was just the tip of the iceberg.

Here is the current list of (known) people “author” Cristiane Serruya has stolen from. Only the biggest authors in the business!

I’d say I’m shocked by her boldness, but she has got away with this for ages, AND even entered her books in the RITA Awards – the biggest romance writing awards around.

Here's an updated list of the authors who've reported being plagiarised by Cristiane Serruya or had recipes stolen from their books.

Tomi Adeyemi apologises to Nora Roberts

Tomi-AdeyemiTomi Adeyemi apologises to Nora Roberts

I honestly haven’t been following this at all, but I’ll share a few links:

Mob Rule by Social Media (Nora Roberts’ response to being falsely accused of plagiarism)

“While this writer issued a kind of retraction after I reached out to her, it didn’t stop some of her readers from calling me a liar, and worse. We reached out again, asking her to put out the fire.

We’ve had no response, not from her, not from her agent.

Shame on them.

I had every intention of letting this go, until the flames kept burning, until the attacks kept coming. And nothing was done by the person who lit the match to stop it.”

and

Tomi Adeyemi apologises to Nora Roberts

There is also Beverly Jenkins’ take on the situation.

The “Of Something and Something” titles are literally everywhere at the moment, and, frankly, I can’t tell one from another. For a newbie to convince her fans that Roberts – surely one of the world’s most famous authors – is copying her, and then send those fans after her, is obscene.