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Cassandra Clare

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by nevu, Dec 10, 2017.

  1. nevu

    nevu First Year

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    I was working my way through goodreads list of popular urban fantasy books and there was one name on there I'd never heard of. There's more than a million ratings, making it absurdly popular. I go and look at the reviews and see mostly people blasting the author for being an admitted plagiarist and somehow plagiarizing her own fanfiction. Then she has more books. Apparently this is all fairly old history but I was surprised I'd never heard of it until this week.

    I'm honestly wondering how no one ever came after her for plagiarism and if the books are actually awful
     
  2. ScottPress

    ScottPress The Horny Sovereign Prestige

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    TL;DR is that she plagiarized Pamela Dean's The Hidden Land, sometimes copying entire passages or ideas that were easily recognizable by someone who's read Dean's work apparently, and she did it without crediting Dean. It was doubly jarring because Claire did credit many other works of fiction that she borrowed from in the past, for the same fic series (the Draco Trilogy), but those were mostly one-line quotes.

    But I disagree about plagiarizing her own fanfiction. This wasn't a research paper, it's fantasy fiction. Our own @Joe does the same thing. His first published novel is basically an abridged verion of the Wastelands of Time. If you have a great idea, I don't see why you can't lift it from fanfiction that you wrote.

    I've never read any of Claire's books (she changed her penname to Clare after the whole debacle to put distance between her fanfic and her original fiction), but I read the Draco Trilogy at one point and I've seen the movie based on her first novel. There's a scene in it that confirms that she cannibalized her fanfic to write her original fiction (again, I don't think that's a bad thing).

    The whole story is like a decade old at this point. Claire was a big author in the Three Year Summer.
     
  3. nevu

    nevu First Year

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    Ah, that was the way some of the reviewers at goodreads were describing it, which did seem overly harsh to me. The original fanfic being filled with plagiarism seems the bigger worry.
     
  4. Joe

    Joe The Reminiscent Exile Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Yeah this is true. At a certain point I started to use fanfiction as a way of testing my ideas - the ideas that seemed to be a hit, I developed into original stories.

    I used you. I used all of you. And no, I won't be giving any reacharounds.
     
  5. Republic

    Republic The Snow Queen Prestige DLP Supporter

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    The worst part is that you didn't even let us finish.
     
  6. Nevermind

    Nevermind Sixth Year

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    I do feel used.

    That being said, half the ideas stored in the depths of my hard drive for Harry Potter (or other fandoms) are inspired in some way, shape, or form by oftentimes completely unrelated films and tv shows I‘ve seen. I take one or two interesting aspects, and that‘s it. An item of clothing I like, a minor plot point, etc.

    I have had limited interactions with two published authors of fiction, and from my very limited viewpoint, I would argue that even on a relatively small level, the things you might have gotten away with before you can no longer do as the scrutiny your work is put under magnifies, first from editors (ideally), and then from the audience. I am always a bit surprised when I see these issues popping up, because I tend to think "Somebody ought to have noticed that, right?"

    Then again, we are living in a world where a rewritten Twilight smut fic can soar to the top of the bestseller list and can spawn multiple follow-up installments and a movie franchise, so… potato, tomato, as a friend of mine would say.

    [edit: fixed a minor grammatical issue]
     
  7. pbluekan

    pbluekan Professor DLP Supporter

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    Courtesy is truly dead.
    Plagiarism is a thorny issue, but I think this is generally how most people gain their inspiration. That’s completely fine, so long as you aren’t directly lifting someone else’s ideas directly to your work, and even that has gradients of acceptability.