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Thread: creativewritingfiction.com / fiction-writing-tips.com (Patrick H. Dent)

  1. #1
    I grow my own catnip JulieB's Avatar
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    creativewritingfiction.com / fiction-writing-tips.com (Patrick H. Dent)

    I got spam at two e-mail addresses from these people.

    Anyone know anything about them?

    ETA: I hope this isn't a rehash of an old topic, but I couldn't find anything in a search.

    Further information: I tried their opt-out mechanism (because it's a reliable mailing service - I know someone else who has used it for business) and ended up with more spam. I e-mailed the site owner and he promptly removed me from the list but suggested that I had to have opted in. I let him know that I had never, to my knowledge, visited his site, and that to opt in with that service I believe I would have had to have gone through a confirmation process. He agreed that it was the case and said he contact the mailing service. So no, I'm still not calling scam, but just curious if anyone else was getting e-mails from this site.
    Last edited by JulieB; 07-26-2006 at 02:34 AM. Reason: removing irrelevant info

  2. #2
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    Compare his self-published best seller, Execution of Justice (from Lulu.com) with Atlanta Nights, also from Lulu.com.

    EoJ's Amazon number as of tonight: Amazon.com Sales Rank: #3,275,767 in Books
    AN's Amazon number as of tonight: Amazon.com Sales Rank: #724,314 in Books

    EoJ's Lulu number as of tonight: Lulu Sales Rank: 4,472
    AN's Lulu number as of tonight: Lulu Sales Rank: 73

    EoJ's BN.com number as of tonight: None
    AN's BN.com number as of tonight: Barnes & Noble Sales Rank: 383,674

    Who should you listen to for advice on writing and selling your book? Patrick Dent or Travis Tea?

    My judgment? Clueless newbie.

    But....

    Look at his article on plotting: http://www.fiction-writing-tips.com/...n/plotting.htm

    Compare that, if you will, with this post by me from Learn Writing with Uncle Jim: http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/...&postcount=219

    Does it seem eerily similar?

    I don't know how much or how many of his articles are plagiarized, in whole or in part, from me and others ... but I suspect that they all are to one degree or another because he clearly doesn't have a clue of his own about writing or selling a book.
    Last edited by James D. Macdonald; 07-26-2006 at 06:40 AM.

  3. #3
    Now departed. Rest in peace, Scott, from all of us at AW Popeyesays's Avatar
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    <Does it seem eerily similar?>

    I'd say the openings of most paragraphs are pretty much lifted whole-cloth. The examples he uses after the opening of the paragraph differ, but I think that was on purpose.

    I am reminded of the old Tom Lehrer song: "Nicholai Ivanovitch Lobachebsky"

    In the song the character sings:"Don't forget why God made your eyes, so plagiarize, plagiarize, plagiarize."

    For those who don't recognize the name, N. I. Lobachevsky was a famous mathemetician who beat his competitors to publication more often than not. Many of those comp[etitors accused him of plagiarism, though there is no doubt the man was brilliant.

    Regards,
    Scott
    Okay, damnit, I blog http://cscottsaylorsbooks.blogspot.com/
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  4. #4
    I grow my own catnip JulieB's Avatar
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    I cut some stuff out of my original post because I decided it wasn't relevant. What I had said was that the main page reminded me very much of a direct mail sales letter. That didn't suggest a scam to me, but I was uninterested in what he had to offer.

  5. #5
    Still Here! Alan Yee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald
    Look at his article on plotting: http://www.fiction-writing-tips.com/...n/plotting.htm

    Compare that, if you will, with this post by me from Learn Writing with Uncle Jim: http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/...&postcount=219

    Does it seem eerily similar?
    I didn't even have to check the Learn Writing with Uncle Jim thread. I read his article. It was very familiar right from the beginning, and just smacked of Uncle Jim throughout the whole thing. I distinctly remember reading that post a while back. I usually trust my memory on these things.

    I really do wonder: who else has he plagiarized?

  6. #6
    practical experience, FTW
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald
    Who should you listen to for advice on writing and selling your book? Patrick Dent or Travis Tea?
    Actually, were I to teach a novel-writing workshop, "Atlanta Nights" would be one of the textbooks. Mr. Tea's (collective) wisdom on how to screw up a narrative is comprehensive, and ranges from the detailed to the architectonic. (It actually is remarkable how much craft was applied, or disapplied, or however you would say it, to some of the chapters in AN.)

    Advice on writing is always interesting, but the burned hand teaches best. Travis Tea has sent people to the Mayo Clinic Burn Ward, and Uncle Jim & his cohorts have composed one of the best books ever on writing.

    Too bad it hurts so much to read it.

  7. #7
    practical experience, FTW
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    Oh my oh my oh my...

    I just coasted over to

    http://www.fiction-writing-tips.com/...n/plotting.htm

    to check out the similarities between the two articles, and skimmed down to "Internet Writing Resources" at the bottom. What a collection of links!

    The first, Brainsweep, connects you to a site called Write-for-wealth.com that opens with:

    "If you want more LOVE, MONEY, or both, TRUE WEALTH beyond your greatest dreams . . .
    Give me 15 minutes a day for 3 weeks and I will start you on your Lifeline to a Lifetime of true wealth--or you don't pay a cent."

    Hey, hard to refuse, huh?

    The next, Write A Bestseller, takes you to a site run by someone named Lee Masterson and a couple of his e-books on writing (which, by the way, claims are themselves bestsellers). As far as I can tell, though, Mr. Masterson has never actually published a book. (Okay, all I did was search Amazon, so I could be wrong. Maybe "Lee Masterson" is one of John Grisham's pen names. Or maybe Joh Updike's.)

    Another, Viral Writing, features this exciting stuff:
    -------------
    Viral Writing
    Automate Your Writing Like A Virus!
    "Never Seen Before!"
    ...
    The World's Only Push Button, Remote
    Control, Fully Automated, Turnkey, Viral
    Writing System!


    Just Click "Send" And...BAM! 99% of Your Writing Is Done For
    You With Little Or No Work On Your Part!

    Even A Monkey Could Write An Information Product
    With This System
    ----------

    Whoever started this thread has stumbled across the motherlode: a whole community of scammers, troglodytes, and just plain morons, all linking to each other.

    Thank god for the web.

    PS An 'information product'? Yuck.

  8. #8
    Nefarious Ghost Fan AnneMarble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald
    ...I don't know how much or how many of his articles are plagiarized, in whole or in part, from me and others ... but I suspect that they all are to one degree or another because he clearly doesn't have a clue of his own about writing or selling a book.
    Well now I feel especially glad I sent a spam report after getting my copy.

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    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JulieB
    I cut some stuff out of my original post because I decided it wasn't relevant. What I had said was that the main page reminded me very much of a direct mail sales letter. That didn't suggest a scam to me, but I was uninterested in what he had to offer.
    Something doesn't need to be a deliberate scam to be useless and/or damaging. This guy may mean well, but he hasn't a clue. The fact that he spams ("opt-in" or not) labels him as someone to avoid, IMHO. If he's sticky-fingered besides, all the more reason to alert folks about him.
    ICAO
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    II 2016: 2017:

  10. #10
    Now departed. Rest in peace, Scott, from all of us at AW Popeyesays's Avatar
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    From the sales site for Viral Writing:
    Save Time And Effort

    Send one e-mail and 99% of your writing will be done for you!
    Never spend hours doing boring research again!
    The other 1% of your writing will take you only minutes!
    It's up to you if you want to add anything extra to the information product!
    Write only titles, your own name, table of contents, chapters, etc.
    Use this system to add or update content to what you've already wrote.


    I wonder if it will also put exclamation marks on every other sentence?!? Just like these guys do!

    Red text added by me
    Regards,
    Scott
    Last edited by Popeyesays; 07-27-2006 at 10:52 PM.
    Okay, damnit, I blog http://cscottsaylorsbooks.blogspot.com/
    Sword of the Dajjal e-book, Published by BooksForABuck.com May, 2007 ISBN: 978-1-602-052-2 http://www.booksforabuck.com/sfpages...rd_dajjal.html
    Out in print early 2008 from Blu Phi'er
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    Moderator In Name Only AW Moderator Roger J Carlson's Avatar
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    The plotting page:
    http://www.fiction-writing-tips.com/...n/plotting.htm

    is now gone. Hmmmm... I wonder why. You didn't happen to save a copy of it, did you Jim?
    --Roger J. Carlson

  12. #12
    practical experience, FTW
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    Quote Originally Posted by Popeyesays
    Use this system to add or update content to what you've already wrote.
    Scott
    I think they must mean what I have already writed.

    That's one of the more interesting locutions I've runned into.

  13. #13
    practical experience, FTW JulesJones's Avatar
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    I got the spam as well (and promptly put it through spamcop.net in the hope of making his life a little more difficult). I can assure you that I did not opt-in to his list. I received it only at the address that is on my website, not at any of various other addresses that have made it onto the commercial spamming lists, so my suspicion is that this guy has been going around manually harvesting addresses from writers' websites and the like. He may be sufficiently clueless that he thinks targetting his spam makes it magically not spam any more.
    http://www.julesjones.com

    Flynnís not as anonymous as he thinks when he tells his chatroom friends what he wants his new boss to do to him. When his boss confronts him, Flynnís choice is put up or shut up. He can play out the fantasy or walk away and forget about his fantasies forever.
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  14. #14
    I grow my own catnip JulieB's Avatar
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    A friend of mine (not an AW member) also got spammed from these folks. Like me, she's very selective about signing up for things. I also suspect that the addresses were harvested.

  15. #15
    Reinventing Myself Scribhneoir's Avatar
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    I found this "offer" in my AOL spam file the other day. I'm pretty selective in sharing that address, too, so count me in with those who think the addresses were harvested. I certainly never opted in. I visited the site once yesterday by clicking on the link provided upthread, but that was only to see his plagiarism.

  16. #16
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin Insomnicole's Avatar
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    Sigh. I got one too, and I sure as heck didn't opt in for anything. I didn't even bother following the links; nothing about it sounded terribly appealing.

  17. #17
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    If any individual got terribly motivated, he or she could find the originals of the other articles that Patrick Dent posts, write to their authors, and ask if Patrick Dent has permission to reprint them.

  18. #18
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    May I invite everyone's attention to this article: http://www.writerswrite.com/screenwriting/lecture4.htm

    It's a lecture by Stephen J. Cannell titled "What is the Three Act Structure?"

    Go on, read it. Fine lecture.

    May I invite your attention now to this little notice at the bottom of that page?
    Copyright &#169; 1998-2003 by Stephen J. Cannell and Writers Write, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Copying, reproduction, or dissemination of these materials in any form whatsoever is expressly forbidden.
    That seems pretty definite.

    Now, may I invite you to Google on " As the craft of writing has evolved, it has naturally formed the plot structure most pleasant to the human mind."

    You'll get about 45 hits -- all of them seem to be our boy Patrick Dent posting to various on-line venues. Check a few of 'em out: here or here or here ... or many, many more.

    Oddly, there's no mention of Stephen J. Cannell anywhere on 'em--despite the fact that all of those articles are lifted word-for-word from Mr. Cannell's lecture. Not just a phrase here and there: The whole flamin' thing.

    Look at what else is odd ... every one of those places identifies the article as having been written by Patrick Dent. Funny coincidence, eh? Check the dates. He's been doing this for months.

    Look at About the Author (this shows up on many of the sites Patrick has posted to):
    Patrick’s articles and short stories have earned him the status of Expert Author in Ezine directories under to topics of How to Write, Internet Marketing and Short Stories.
    "His" articles have earned him the status of "Expert Author"? As well they might. They were cribbed, in whole and in part, from actual expert authors.
    The major creative contribution he seems to have made is pasting on his own byline.

    Naughty, naughty, Patrick H. Dent. If you try to sell some future book to a real pubisher that publisher might just say to you, "Neat book, Patrick. Who wrote it?"

  19. #19
    Now departed. Rest in peace, Scott, from all of us at AW Popeyesays's Avatar
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    So who's gonna drop the dime on Mr. Dent to Mr. Cannel?

    I think it would be better coming from Uncle Jim or Aunt Victoria, they'd have more credibility to Stephen J. Cannell.

    I bet Mr. Cannell takes being plagiarized seriously.

    Regards,
    Scott
    Okay, damnit, I blog http://cscottsaylorsbooks.blogspot.com/
    Sword of the Dajjal e-book, Published by BooksForABuck.com May, 2007 ISBN: 978-1-602-052-2 http://www.booksforabuck.com/sfpages...rd_dajjal.html
    Out in print early 2008 from Blu Phi'er
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    http://www.bluphier.com/

  20. #20
    Writting broad batgirl's Avatar
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    The Fiction Writing Overview, which also appears on Buzzle.com apparently attributed to Patrick Dent, appears to be a fairly direct lift from Advice on Novel Writing, by Crawford Kilian.
    It was the mention of the Nanaimo coal mines that tipped me - Kilian's a Canadian sf writer, and it's not a reference likely to be readily available to a random US writer.

    The article on plotting is now one credited to a Dr. Vicki Hinze, whom I know not. But a (snippy?) attribution says "Dr. Vicki Hinze is an award-winning, best-selling author who routinely shares her expertise at national writers' conferences, online, and through her writing guides."
    Several other articles have bylines, but not all. I may spend a half-hour googling phrases from those without bylines.
    -Barbara
    Last edited by batgirl; 07-29-2006 at 07:48 AM.
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  21. #21
    Reinventing Myself Scribhneoir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Popeyesays
    So who's gonna drop the dime on Mr. Dent to Mr. Cannel?

    I think it would be better coming from Uncle Jim or Aunt Victoria, they'd have more credibility to Stephen J. Cannell.

    I bet Mr. Cannell takes being plagiarized seriously.

    Regards,
    Scott
    I've got a friend who's good buddies with Steve Cannell. Want me to have her pass the word?

  22. #22
    Writting broad batgirl's Avatar
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    I've just emailed Crawford Kilian (and yeah, it's Kilian, not Killian, I'll correct that later).
    -Barbara
    will crit for rep points
    "Your commas are pretty good." TNH
    okay, I have a blog



  23. #23
    It's hard being green ChunkyC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scribhneoir
    I've got a friend who's good buddies with Steve Cannell. Want me to have her pass the word?
    Just have her point him to this thread and Jim's post in particular.
    Last edited by ChunkyC; 07-29-2006 at 08:42 PM.
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  24. #24
    Moderator In Name Only AW Moderator Roger J Carlson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald
    May I invite everyone's attention to this article: http://www.writerswrite.com/screenwriting/lecture4.htm
    <snip the rest>
    Uptown's got it's hustlers,
    Bowry's got it's bums,
    Absolute Write's got Big Jim Macdonald,
    He's a Googling son of a gun.
    ...
    You don't tug on Superman's cape,
    You don't spit into the wind,
    You don't pull the mask off the old Lone Ranger,
    And you don't mess around with Jim.
    --Roger J. Carlson

  25. #25
    What happened to my LIFE?!
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    Good ol' Jim Croce. Shame that he died as young as he did - he was a good singer/songwriter.
    Last edited by ATP; 07-30-2006 at 03:46 PM.

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