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Thread: PublishAmerica author sues Stephen King for plagiarism

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    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    PublishAmerica author sues Stephen King for plagiarism

    Rod Marquardt, author of Keller's Den, is alleging that King's novel, Duma Key, contains infringing content. He's asking for an injunction, destruction of copies, damages, and restitution.

    The complaint is here. The entire cause of action seems to be that Marquardt published his novel in 2002, and King published his in 2008. The list of allegedly infringing content makes for very sad reading.

    - Victoria

  2. #2
    Absolutely Fazed
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    They misspell King's name several times. Does that matter?

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    Shakespearean Fool DreamWeaver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeadlyAccurate View Post
    They misspell King's name several times.
    On the other hand, I'll admit to being impressed that they spelled "cavalry" correctly, since it feels like I see it misspelled "calvary" 95% of the time.


    As my old tactics professor used to say, "Cavalry is mounted soldiers. Calvary is a hill in Jerusalem".
    Why doesn't George R. R. Martin use Twitter? He already killed off all 140 characters.

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    i write words Aidan Watson-Morris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DreamWeaver View Post
    On the other hand, I'll admit to being impressed that they spelled "cavalry" correctly, since it feels like I see it misspelled "calvary" 95% of the time.


    As my old tactics professor used to say, "Cavalry is mounted soldiers. Calvary is a hill in Jerusalem".
    I'm setting a military book in Jerusalem now just to use the phrase:

    "The Cavalry arrived in Calvary."
    Last edited by Aidan Watson-Morris; 03-21-2011 at 04:12 AM. Reason: Semi-colon instead of colon. I've heard PA authors have used semi-colons before and I wouldn't want to plagiarize.

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    That hairy-handed gent
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeadlyAccurate View Post
    They misspell King's name several times. Does that matter?
    How in Christ do you misspell "King"?
    Last edited by blacbird; 12-08-2010 at 12:16 PM. Reason: typo. damn old baseball hand injury. fingers no work good.

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    Absolutely Fazed
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    Quote Originally Posted by blacbird View Post
    How in Christ do you misspell "King"?
    I meant they wrote Steven instead of Stephen several times.

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    Shakespearean Fool DreamWeaver's Avatar
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    Oooh, maybe this suit will lead to a subpoena for PA to provide information on how many copies of the PA book were actually printed & sold, and to whom (bookstores, direct sales from the website, to the author, etc.). That would be interesting. Especially if PA's recordkeeping matches its ability to provide proper royalty accounting.
    Why doesn't George R. R. Martin use Twitter? He already killed off all 140 characters.

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    Baby plot bunneh sniffs out a clue Snowstorm's Avatar
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    Wow, just wow. My mind boggled reading through that.


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    Well, I, for one, am convinced King did it.

    .......



    Yeah.

    Probably not, dude.

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    A Gentleman of a refined age... thothguard51's Avatar
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    So I guess we can not use the color yellow in a painting, or make statements like rescued by the cavalry, without Mr Rod Marquardt feeling like we are stealing his cliche's...

    This is really sad, except for the lawyers...

    I seriously doubt a journey is going to find judgement against Mr King in favor of a PA author.
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    The King and Queen of Cheese BenPanced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thothguard51 View Post
    So I guess we can not use the color yellow in a painting, or make statements like rescued by the cavalry, without Mr Rod Marquardt feeling like we are stealing his cliche's...

    This is really sad, except for the lawyers...

    I seriously doubt a journey is going to find judgement against Mr King in favor of a PA author.
    Well, there goes my novel about a telepathic artist who's rescued by the calvary cavalry before she drowns in a bathtub...
    I still poop rainbows.




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    Rewriting My Destiny Cyia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by victoriastrauss View Post
    The list of allegedly infringing content makes for very sad reading.

    - Victoria

    You mean like this:

    Two secondary characters from each novel try to convince both
    main characters to leave the house after a scary incident, but both
    main characters stay alone at their house (
    Which is pretty much standard practice in every thriller/horror ever written.


    Or

    Both novels use the word “cavalry” as being rescued from the
    intruder when someone else shows up
    Which is a 200 year-old cliche, at least.
    <----Look! NEW BOOK!



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    sekrit superhero Steam&Ink's Avatar
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    There are some interesting comparisons. And there are some very far-fetched ones, too.

    Of course you'd have to read the novels to really get a good idea. (And for that reason I feel sorry for any judge on this lawsuit - even from the snippet I got a feeling of purple prose).




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    A Gentleman of a refined age... thothguard51's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steampunkette View Post
    There are some interesting comparisons. And there are some very far-fetched ones, too.

    Of course you'd have to read the novels to really get a good idea. (And for that reason I feel sorry for any judge on this lawsuit - even from the snippet I got a feeling of purple prose).
    He is asking for a JURY trial... Lucky judge...
    Knowledge is learned while wisdom is earned.

    Currently working on...

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    Two years old now. Lyra Jean's Avatar
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    Maybe it's a new ploy by PA authors to sell more novels.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lyra Jean View Post
    Maybe it's a new ploy by PA authors to sell more novels.
    They can only hope, the poor abused souls. That's not the way to do it, though.

    They first need to get out of their contracts, and then they might have a chance!



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    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    I'm feeling sad, thinking about the cash the author is shelling out for this. Honestly, the whole thing has become really distasteful, with the author dancing after his delusion like the girl in the red shoes, and the lawyers pocketing money for this lost and pointless cause in order to be able to say they sued Stephen King.

    Just gross.

    - Victoria

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    Cultus Gopherus MacAllister SuperModerator Medievalist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thothguard51 View Post
    He is asking for a JURY trial... Lucky judge...
    That raises the costs of the case significantly. It was a poor decision.

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    sekrit superhero Steam&Ink's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thothguard51 View Post
    He is asking for a JURY trial... Lucky judge...
    At least he'll be able to say that twelve people have read his book




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    practical experience, FTW necia phoenix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steampunkette View Post
    At least he'll be able to say that twelve people have read his book

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    A Gentleman of a refined age... thothguard51's Avatar
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    As far as PA opening their books, they are not party to the lawsuit that I can see.

    Also, didn't PA claim some type of fire or water damage some years ago in which they lost records????
    Knowledge is learned while wisdom is earned.

    Currently working on...

    From, The Tales of Netherron,
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    In the pipeline,
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  22. #22
    Shakespearean Fool DreamWeaver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thothguard51 View Post
    As far as PA opening their books, they are not party to the lawsuit that I can see.
    No, but their records could be substantiating evidence, and therefore it seems possible one side or the other may ask for them.

    I seem to recall that one of the reasons the lady who sued JK Rowling had her case thrown out of court was that the number of her books that were printed was miniscule and sales were restricted to such a tiny geographical area that those two facts made it unreasonable to believe that JK Rowling could ever have seen her book, much less read it and plagiarized it.

    But I might be misremembering that, of course.

    ETA: I know this isn't the only reason, or even a main one. There were lots of other, more important reasons. BUT, this is the one that could cause PA some...trouble, let's say. That's why I mentioned it, instead of all the other reasons that particular suit was idiotic.
    Last edited by DreamWeaver; 12-08-2010 at 11:22 PM.
    Why doesn't George R. R. Martin use Twitter? He already killed off all 140 characters.

  23. #23
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DreamWeaver View Post

    I seem to recall that one of the reasons the lady who sued JK Rowling had her case thrown out of court was that the number of her books that were printed was miniscule and sales were restricted to such a tiny geographical area that those two facts made it unreasonable to believe that JK Rowling could ever have seen her book, much less read it and plagiarized it.
    Perhaps, but the big reason was that it was proved in open court that she had fabricated evidence.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by DreamWeaver View Post
    No, but their records could be substantiating evidence, and therefore it seems possible one side or the other may ask for them.

    I seem to recall that one of the reasons the lady who sued JK Rowling had her case thrown out of court was that the number of her books that were printed was miniscule and sales were restricted to such a tiny geographical area that those two facts made it unreasonable to believe that JK Rowling could ever have seen her book, much less read it and plagiarized it.

    But I might be misremembering that, of course.
    No, even one book would have been enough. Trouble was, there wasn't a single copy anyone could find anywhere, except a copy that was altered long after the fact. This is why the lady who sued ended up being fined a lot of money.

    Actual plagiarism itself is proof of having read a copy, not number of copies out Terr. It only takes one copy for someone to copy the contents.

  25. #25
    Hey, that's my bike! ghost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jamesaritchie View Post
    No, even one book would have been enough. Trouble was, there wasn't a single copy anyone could find anywhere, except a copy that was altered long after the fact. This is why the lady who sued ended up being fined a lot of money.

    Actual plagiarism itself is proof of having read a copy, not number of copies out Terr. It only takes one copy for someone to copy the contents.
    Funny enough, there was a copy in the discount book store in Vancouver, BC. I kept wanting to buy it, but refused to pay the twenty bucks they were asking for it.

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