Two passports at the moment, and I have lived in 18 countries to date. I'm determined to keep adding to that tally...
I read... alot.
I write. I don't, however, post on ff.net - their rating system is too unclear, and there is no forum or means to interact with site admins that allows for meaningful discussion on points of confusion or contention. Rules here are applied inconsistently and arbitrarily: one author I know had his entire story deleted 24 hours after he posted a petition as a chapter within his story; a reported [incredibly graphic incest] porn story, however, remains up to this day.
I hate plagiarism. Even worse - authors that plagiarise and then ask for reviews. Presenting someone else's work to get praise? What does that say about your own self-worth?
We Stand United, by EmmyR : In the author's note in Chapter 1, EmmyR says "There are over 600,000 HP stories on this site alone, and while I will never steal someone else's story, I can't guarantee that there won't be similarities, but I will try to have this be as original as possible". Apparently that statement is supposed to absolve the shameless presentation of bits and pieces from multiple authors, patched together to create 'her' story. While those small thefts are everywhere in her story, EmmyR refuses to respond to questions about larger (and blatant) plagiarism in her Chapter 23 from Robin4's 'Death Before Dishonor' [Chapter 18] - written in 2003. While EmmyR privately acknowledges "accidentally plagiarizing" in a PM (shared with me by the original author), publicly she offers NOTHING to credit the original author - not even for inspiration. While the original author may not have demanded re-write or takedown - it doesn't change the simple fact that IT'S NOT EMMYR's WORK. Personally, I find 'accidental plagiarism' a bit like 'accidental pregnancy'. Its not accidental when it's happening... just when [and only if] its discovered.
Update* - In Chapter 43, EmmyR posted a rant about someone 'stealing' her work and putting it on another site. That rant currently includes a justification for what she does, implying that as long as you don't steal it "word for word", its not plagiarism. Its a sad state that people think that perspective is even remotely valid.
On the bright side, though, rumors are that she has a book being published: 'Larry Rotter and the Philanthropists Rock'. Its about a young boy who goes to a magic school called Pigmoles, and his adventures with his friends Don Ferretly and Hortensia Grainjuror as they are drawn deep inside a supernatural world, while helping Larry on his journey towards a noble destiny. The sequel - 'Larry Rotter and the Room of Hidden Confidences' is still being copied... err - written. And 'End Sarcasm'. Cut.
Antithesis, by cywscross This story is a bit of a confusing situation. In it, cywscross states: "This plot whacked me over the head in the middle of an English lecture". If that's the case, it must have been while he was reading Lady Azar de Tameran's story "White Lies And Other Misdemeanors". Antithesis essentially takes a small but fairly defined plot construct in the fourth section of the Lady's oneshot and fleshes it out in much greater detail. While cywscross didn't respond to comments regarding this similarity, Lady Azar de Tameran says "I don't consider this a plagiarism. I've spoken with this writer before, and they have my permission for any of my ideas anyway". So why am I including it here? Mostly because, with apologies to the Lady, it clearly is derived from part of her story and NOT an original work. If cywscross has her permission, then he should be acknowledging her work as the foundation for his story - not implying that he was struck with original inspiration while attending class. The only way this story couldn't be plagiarism - without acknowledging the permission - is if they (Lady Azar and cywscross) are the same person. FWIW, I personally don't completely reject that as a possibility.
My FanFiction Pet Peeves:
"don't like, don't read"
This is a crap attitude for an author. Any author. It's particularly offensive coming from any author that says "don't forget to review" or "read and review" in their chapter postings. If you believe that "don't like, don't read" helps you become a better writer - you're wrong. If you choose to believe that anyhow, then at least have the honesty to say "only leave notes telling me I'm awesome" in your story posts.
"Don't like, don't read" is completely unacceptable from another reviewer. Honestly - who do you think you are? The author has asked readers for reviews. Who invited you - a third party - into that conversation, in a position to influence or moderate reviews?
"you don't even have a story posted here"
Do I have to play for a professional football team to be allowed to give my opinion on David Beckham?
Do I have to be a 19th century post impressionist painter to comment on the influence of Gauguin on Van Gogh?
Do I have to be a chef to decide if my meal has been cooked properly?
For any of you that want to pursue a career in writing, here's the news: there is a whole industry of people out there in 'writing' who don't necessarily write. And you don't get to say "show me what you've done before you get to comment on my work"! Editors, Associate Editors, Copy Editors, Editorial Assistant, Executive Editor, Publications Editor, Senior Editor, Story Editor - and those are just some of the people that come to mind. Then there are all those other annoying people - PROFESSIONAL REVIEWERS.
Ask any one of those individuals if they've ever had a successful story published... even if they have, you will likely have destroyed a professional relationship with them beyond repair.
"you owe me respect"
Uh - no, I don't. You wrote a story and - typically - asked for my feedback (I try to only leave reviews where an author has specifically requested one - after all, some authors write only for their own pleasure, not their readers). If you don't like my feedback, don't try to tell me what I'm allowed to say, or how I'm supposed to say it. I didn't ask for a review of my review. If you disagree with what I said, or you find it insufficient or confusing, by all means - lets have a conversation. If you don't agree with how I said it, though, then you should stop asking for reviews.
Reviewers don't write to please authors - its the other way around.
Author notes re: 'CONTINUATIONS / SEQUELS / USES OF MY ORIGINAL CHARACTERS'
I can't even begin to comment on the sheer arrogance of any author regarding statements similar to "I will not and do not authorise any reproduction of my work, continuations, sequels, and uses of my original characters or ideas". Apparently you have forgotten that your referenced 'protection claims' are predicated on someone else's work.
I find it astonishing that you can be so hypocritical as to claim rights over work that would not exist if the original author enforced those same rights.
I find it astonishing that you think your claims carry any legal or ethical weight at all.
Believe it or not, people have sent me mail commenting on what I choose to include in my Favourites list. I choose to include whatever stories or authors I want: sometimes because I think its a great story; sometimes because it has a great scene; sometimes because they have an unusual character or a particularly interesting description. Sometimes its place there is temporary, as I'm in the middle of reading a story and I find it an easy way to save where I am. I even once saved someone as a favourite author even though I don't like anything they have ever written - I just wanted to go through their favourites.
These are MY favorites, for whatever reason I choose. Why anyone thinks that they are open to discussion is beyond me.
After all that - Stupid People
Despite all of the above, recently I had a protracted PM exchange with an author here on my review of another author's story. In that original review, I stated that while I was enjoying her story, she lost me when it suddenly diverted into pornography. This devolution seemed rather pointless, it didn't seem plot critical or add any value in my opinion, and that it was rather pedestrian. I explained why I wasn't continuing on, but wished her good luck on the rest of her story.
This 'third party'/other author PM-ed me to tell me how I'm 'wrong' for my review. He referenced my profile, telling me 'yes you do indeed need to play the sport to have a valid opinion on it' - and in subsequent PMs altered his defense of his position from valid to a 'valued' opinion. He explained to me that I'm not entitled to give reviews, until I prove my right by having a written story. I identified where my writing is for him, and he further qualified that only stories on THIS site count, as opposed to "the writing they have done on some no-name sight" [sic]. He then stated he would read my stories and decide whether I could "show us that hey, you are a competent writer and you can indeed have a valued opinion". He also explained that "just because you list it under your pet peaves [sic] doesn't mean we are going to forgive you for your conduct" and to 'Get the fuck off of our site".
Yeah. Stupid people.
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