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Topic: Romance plagiarism

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Subject: Romance plagiarism
Date Posted: 1/10/2008 9:36 AM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2006
Posts: 670
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Saw this in another forum here, interesting... http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080110/ap_en_ot/books_romance_writer;_ylt=AvTJqzTdDWTrIx7gVbEGw.gDW7oF


Date Posted: 1/10/2008 10:09 AM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2007
Posts: 1,646
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I'll bet there's way more than that going on.

Date Posted: 1/10/2008 8:11 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I saw that and almost posted on here about it. I haven't read that many Cassie Edwards books.  The couple I read were almost identical and from what I've heard on here, they pretty much all are.  Not sure I'd want a history lesson on ferret's while reading a romance. 

Date Posted: 1/10/2008 9:17 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Lol.  I see the Cassie Edwards books on the shelf and hurry past, averting my eyes.  I might read one if I was marooned on a deserted Island... with nothing but the book.

Comparing those passages, I can say without hesitation that it definitely is plagiarism.  It's copied almost word for word , which does not equal *cough* "research".  It makes you wonder if she's not copying and pasting her books straight to word docs from reference materials on the internet.  I look at it this way - I used to get straight A's for writing papers that I more or less pulled every scrap of available information for right out of the Encyclopedia.  I knew without being told even as far back as 7th grade that you take the reference material and rewrite it using the pertinent facts, IN YOUR OWN WORDS.  I can't imagine how one gets to be a hugely published bestselling author without being aware of that.

Date Posted: 1/11/2008 11:00 AM ET
Member Since: 12/18/2007
Posts: 2,199
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That happened to Nora roberts a few years ago by Janet Dailey, too.  I guess NR is a popular author to plagiarize.

Date Posted: 1/11/2008 11:45 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Plagiarism of some form is almost guaranteed to happen in the romance genre.  Between romance authors - especially with historicals - and with regard to the most commonly known & used reference materials.  They say frequently that there are no new premises.  There are actually seminars that many popular authors give & attend on reinventing the frequently used premise.  It's something of a running joke in the industry.  Last time I looked, romance novels of varying sub-genres accounted for 52% of all published books.  They also had a comparable percentage of the market share in overall book sales.  The incentive to write it is definitely out there, but fresh premises for a specific genre & its sub-genres tend to be a little more finite, and there's always the factor of one author seeing what another author did, appreciating it, and trying to go one better, or put a different spin on it.  Plus, they have the pressure of wanting to sell books and remain highly visible.  The bestseller lists aren't really based on the quality of an author's works, once they become well recognized & popular.  I'm sure Cassie Edwards, for all that her books turn a lot of people off, is an auto-buy for a great many romance readers, so she is probably under at least some pressure to produce new books frequently, which I think leads to general sloppiness and corner cutting in research.  If she wants to be on the bestseller lists anyway.

Date Posted: 1/11/2008 6:27 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2007
Posts: 31
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There may be "no new premises" and commonly used reference books, but this does not mean a writer should copy word-for-word from those reference books.  If they are truly a writer, they should have no trouble doing a re-wording of the information.  It seems like laziness--or complete ignorance of what plagiarism is.

Date Posted: 1/11/2008 10:02 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I seriously doubt that she's ignorant of what constitutes plagiarism.  I don't see how she could possibly be that stupid and a bestselling author at the same time.  I agree with the notion of laziness.  But really, anybody who can't be troubled to just rewrite a paragraph from a reference book must have it pretty bad.  .All I can say is how embarrassing.  It must really suck to be her right now.

Date Posted: 1/14/2008 4:06 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 527
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This was actually discovered on the Smart Bitches blog, which I visit daily and read when they first discovered it. smartbitchestrashybooks.com You can get all the info and updates. I can't believe the publisher first said "Edwards did nothing wrong", which of course they renegged afterwards. Anyone that thinks just lifting paragraphs out of other books is ok is just a lazy moron, especially if they think the book being a research one makes it ok. Edwards also put her husband on the phone when reporters called, I have a feeling she's a coward and just hoped no one would catch on.

Apparently Edwards just posted this on Myspace, it just blew my mind!-

————————— Original Message
From: Cassie Edwards
Date: Jan 11, 2008 11:58 AM

Hi, Lisa,
I just got on My Space and I found your wonderful encouraging letter. Thank you for believing in me, for I have done nothing wrong. My publisher is standing behind me 100%, for they know my work better than anyone, and they know that all romance authors who use research for historicals have to use reference books to do this. My readers love this accurate material about the Indians. And if I couldn’t use this material my books would not be worth anything to my readers who depend on me.

The sad thing is that I am writing these books now in a way to honor our Native Americans, past, present and in the future. And I am honoring my great grandmother who was a full blood Cheyenne. She would be so proud of me if she could read what I am writing about the Indians who have been so maligned for so long. And do you know? I feel picked on now as our Native American Indians have always been picked on throughout history. I am trying to spread the word about them and what do I get? Spiteful women who have found a way to bring attention to themselves, by getting in the media in this horrible way.

Right now I am getting hit from all sides....CNN, The New York Times, AP, everyone who those women could think of to contact. And what is also sad is that a fellow author, has spoken up and condemned me.

Thanks again for your support. When I am feeling stronger I plan to write a bulletin on My Space, but right now I am totally drained of energy from what has been done to me. I hope that you will tell your friends, who are so much also mine, the wrong that has been done to me, and tell them that I will get through this. I will be found innocent and vendicated of any wrong.

For now, it’s all too raw and horrible, but I will be alright.
Love, Cassie

Date Posted: 1/14/2008 5:04 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Oh, that poor little drama queen.  It's racial persecution now, is it?  I've never read anything so absurd in my life.  If I could be bothered to post on her myspace - and I wasn't just a little concerned that moral decrepitude could be catching - I'd tell her to put a sock in it and learn to rewrite her freaking reference materials from now on.  Right now, I hope that whoever she plagiarized sues her.  I could have cared less if she got a slap on the wrist and a little bad press before.  Now, I think she'd be getting what she deserves if she can't get published anymore.

Last Edited on: 1/14/08 5:05 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/15/2008 6:47 AM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2006
Posts: 8,426
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Last Edited on: 12/13/08 9:22 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/16/2008 8:59 PM ET
Member Since: 7/8/2005
Posts: 1,010
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Just wanted to remind people to check out the Smartbitches site.  Nora Roberts has offered to match donations to a wildlife site up to 5,000.  More info on the site.  At least some good will come out of this fiasco.  I gave a donation, and "adopted" a blackfooted ferret.

Date Posted: 1/16/2008 9:20 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 527
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The donation drive is awesome, and Nora Roberts just gets cooler all the time. I'm REALLY happy something positive came out of this fiasco...

Last Edited on: 1/16/08 9:21 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/18/2008 9:45 AM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2006
Posts: 240
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I highly recommend that you check out THE BOOK BITCHES (these ones are apparently not smart, LOL that is A JOKE! I swear) they have a link to an article in Newsweek, I think, that is by the author who originally wrote the piece about the ferrets.  This guy is a hoot and all things considered has a great attitude, IMO.


However, Cassie Edwards must be the biggest moron on the planet because she has basically claimed that she had no idea that she need to give credit to (other) sources which she gained material from. (okay copying verbatim is a tad bit more than a research source, but nonetheless . . . .)

WTH?!!!?  I learned that in high school.  May have even been junior high and/or elementary school.   @@ 

Date Posted: 1/18/2008 2:19 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Are they the *ahem* "Spiteful women who have found a way to bring attention to themselves, by getting in the media in this horrible way."?  Or is that supposed to be Nora Roberts?

I was thinking the same thing when I first saw this, Kelly.  That it was like 7th grade when I was first on the horns of this dilemma, when I was using a World Book encyclopedia to write a school paper, and I knew well enough to use the reference material there, but rewrite it in my own words.  I wouldn't be surprised to see with all this press, that more people start examining her books and finding out she was much more prolific with this than originally thought.

Last Edited on: 1/18/08 2:20 PM ET - Total times edited: 1