Jun 18 2010

Arrr, there be pirates!

Published by at 4:33 pm under Uncategorized,Writing

I just finished up a great novel workshop with Dean Smith and a handful of other writers in Lincoln City, Oregon. There was a lot of good interaction and hammering on submission packages for our recently-completed novels. My package is now eagerly on its way to the hands of an editor who (I hope) will be eager to see the whole thing.

Yesterday, at the end of the workshop, Dean gave us all a little advice on dealing with inevitable piracy — folks posting our work on the web without our permission. I won’t go into details, it was mostly commonse sense given the realities of the world.

But imagine my surprise when, doing a casual out-of-curiosity search on a couple of key phrases today, I found that a website has already posted a complete (but shoddy) copy of my first Analog story. Shoddy in two senses: they got the byline wrong (they left out my first name) and they changed some typography that was important to the plot and the humor in the original story. The really weird thing is that, given the nature of the rest of the site, it makes no sense at all for them to have posted an SF story — or any fiction — in the first place.

Anyway, I won’t get my knickers in a knot over it. I might not even have minded if they’d got my name right — but please don’t take that as permission to post an author’s stuff without asking.

3 comments so far

3 Responses to “Arrr, there be pirates!”

  1. B Clarkon 18 Jun 2010 at 10:09 pm

    Want a surprise?

    Do a Google Advanced Search on the Exact Phrase:
    [phrase redacted – AJWM]

    Then choose this option:
    If you like, you can repeat the search with the omitted results included.

  2. Brad R. Torgersenon 21 Jun 2010 at 8:02 am

    Bummer about the piracy — buggers work fast, don’t they? When you get a moment, fire me an e-mail and let me know your impressions of the workshop.

  3. Alastairon 30 Jun 2010 at 9:10 pm

    @Bruce, I redacted your search phrase because I don’t want these guys getting any more hits than necessary.

    Yes, it certainly seems that there’s a lot of Analog content out there on non-Analog sites, supplied by some third-party company that may have some kind of relationship with Penny Publications/Dell Magazines (and thus Analog). From the wording of my contract for that story, Penny has some rights “to use the Work” in advertising and promotion (of the publisher or the work) but it doesn’t look to me that it was being used that way, nor that Penny knowingly authorized that third party to sublicense it (to a party who sublicensed it to a fourth party).

    Since the site where it originally appeared seems to have pulled the story (at least, the link no longer works) I haven’t pursued it further; it’s not worth my time. But I do wonder if Penny Publications is even aware of this usage. (My impression of the ProQuest arrangement is to make the full content of certain magazines available to libraries and such, not sublicense pieces to content providers. But that’s just an impression; I have no inside knowledge.)

    @Brad – done.