Links: Tattoos, Plagiarism, & More

Workspace with computer, journal, books, coffee, and glasses.Welcome back to Wednesday Links where I am definitely very sleepy!

So far this week, every day has felt like a Monday. Between the heat and this pandemic, I’m just over it. Counties near me are going back to mask mandates and I’m all for doing whatever is best for the community, but it just makes me sad.

Anyone else feeling the same way? Thank god I had therapy yesterday.

We all knew that not everything was Kosher with Goodreads reviews. Well here’s a deep dive. 

And of course, we have yet another plagiarism scandal in romance, with an author lifting passages from Supernatural fanfiction. As Sarah said, “Why would you mess with the SPN fandom? WHY would you DO that?!”

With the Olympics now over, let’s talk about the most important showings of the Summer Games: tattoos. Slate has a ranking of the top ten athlete tattoos. Do you agree with number one?

Author Lindy West has a newsletter again! If you loved her movie commentary for Shit, Actually, rejoice because she’s writing Butt News, which is…you guessed it, more movie talk. Each week, she’ll announce the movie she’ll talk about so you can rewatch and prep before the newsletter comes out. Most recently: Sleepless in Seattle. She also peppers in the adventures of her chaotic new dog!

Don’t forget to share what cool or interesting things you’ve seen, read, or listened to this week! And if you have anything you think we’d like to post on a future Wednesday Links, send it my way!

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  1. 1
    Jill Q. says:

    I manage to be surprised every Wednesday that it’s Wednesday, even though I look at the calendar every day.

    My husband got me into Bill McClintock mashup videos this week. Lots of Van Halen stuff, but here is one of my new favorites.

  2. 2
    DiscoDollyDeb says:

    I’m always amazed at the bravery & good-heartedness of those who post their fan-fic online. I hate to be the cynical voice (ha!), but I always think it’s like ringing the dinner bell for plagiarists. And, apparently, I’m not wrong.

    Re Goodreads: sadly, I’m not surprised. If there’s a way for some people to game the system and make money by doing nothing for it, they will. In fact, what the “bad actors” on Goodreads are doing (appalling as it is) hardly seems that much different from the wholesale extortion business model run by Yelp: don’t pay us and the negative reviews will go to the top.

    Yeah, sometimes I hate humanity…and technology.

  3. 3
    Arijo says:

    Lindy West’s Shit, Actually is actually on sale at 3.99$ today

  4. 4
    Penny says:

    I wish there were an option to bundle substack subscriptions-like pay $15/month for 5 substacks. I’m not at all opposed to paying for content, and I understand this is a challenging time for journalists/writers/etc but also at one point I found myself spending more on substack and Patreon than books. I went through and did some pruning, but I’m sad when I see a new newsletter or blog I want to support and feel like I can’t without stopping another-gotta stick to the budget…

  5. 5
    EC Spurlock says:

    You would think by now people would think twice about plagiarizing from romance authors or romance fans. Looking at one HABO comment section is evidence enough of how well we remember details of the books we read. Inevitably somebody’s going to spot something they remember from somewhere else and put two and two together.

  6. 6
    Heather M says:

    That fanfiction thing is upsetting if not particularly surprising. Since I went back to fanfic in 2020 I’ve found my little corner of it to be super supportive and encouraging, and it’s helped me get back a little confidence and joy for writing, but then you remember…oh, right, this is the internet, and there are plenty of bad actors out there. Bummer.

    (But also…it’s the internet, you *will* be caught out. Maybe if profit is the primary motive, that doesn’t matter as much.)

  7. 7
    Sandra says:

    What got me about the plagiarism article was how surprised the writer seemed that the plagiarizing author wasn’t responding to emails and had shut down all her social media accounts. Honey, that’s how they work. She’ll pop back up again under another name before long. Probably already has two or three aliases working in different genres. One gets burned, move on to the next one.

  8. 8
    Susan/DC says:

    On a lighter note, I was blown away by Liam Broady’s tattoo of Achilles. I understand the gold for the gymnast from Cyprus and totally agree emotionally, but artistically I found Broady’s the best. Maybe it’s because I read Madeline Miller’s Song of Achilles earlier this year and loved it, but I’d give gold, silver, and bronze to Broady.

  9. 9
    TamB. says:

    Author Kylie Scott has announced that her book Lick has been plagiarized on Episode App by MissCarmen as Mrs Rockstar Overnight. She is asking for people to check the other offerings by this person to see if they plagiarized also.

  10. 10
    Stranger says:

    It makes me sad, too: though I never stopped wearing a mask (got vaccinated the moment it was available, of course, but I thought lifting mask rules indoors was premature and I liked not having to fight colds all winter!) but I had felt a reduction of stress about the whole thing. Now I’m wondering how long before I don’t even want to go to a movie theater… (I’ve been to one film since lockdown started and due to other things going on at the time it was no fun, and I had been looking forward to an actual good time.)

  11. 11
    Escapeologist says:

    In the vein of CoinciDANCE, here is the Give Me Compliments song, featuring a surprise dance element. https://youtu.be/zi8ShAosqzI

  12. 12
    Lisa D says:

    I’ve had one of my old fanfiction stories stolen & posted on Amazon. Probably couldn’t have gotten it down if it wasn’t 1 of 25 she stole. All different fake author names, but after 2 weeks of badgering Amazon, they came down.
    Few weeks back, a man stole a number of Harlequin romances & published on Amazon as his own. He must have had NO IDEA what ‘Harlequin’ was as he used it as a tagline like ‘sexy Harlequin romance.’ Some top-name author books were stolen, but Amazon only took 2 days to shut him down.

  13. 13
    Maria F says:

    The Gallaghers of Ardmore trilogy by Nora Roberts is a KDD today for 1.99. 3 books for $2 total: Jewels of the Sun, Tears of the Moon, Heart of the Sea.

  14. 14
    denise says:

    Another thing I’ve noticed with Goodreads is a rash of strange friend requests lately. The photos are always weird and/or suggestive, but the accounts have dates where they’ve been around a while, so it makes me wonder if bots have hijacked accounts which haven’t been used in years. I just delete them–I don’t have faith Goodreads would really investigate since they don’t seem to take a lot things seriously.

    I can’t be the only one getting these requests.

  15. 15

    […] Linkity from Smart Bitches. […]

  16. 16
    Carol S says:

    Goodreads is now owned by Amazon, which is the ultimate black box for reviews. Amazon uses some weird secret algorithm that tries to discover reviews that are solicited by an author and ended up refusing to publish several reviews of my last book that were published by knitters completely of their own accord. It’s super-creepy. It’s a shame they don’t spend more time actually looking for problematic stuff — like, oh, say, exortion??

  17. 17
    Sue says:

    Came across this a few days ago. Now I want to hear death metal with harps! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNINWMqxQQc

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