Too often I live in a bubble and miss a lot of what is going on around me. But I just read something that horrified me and while somewhere in the recesses of my mind I knew it was going on, it's so far removed from anything I would ever do that it was kind of like a small brick hit me in the head.
As anyone who is any kind of regular here has probably gathered, I am a huge fan of Pamela Clare, both as a writer and as a person. I have had the opportunity to exchange emails with her and even better, meet her in person. She has a blog and her most recent post is about how a number of sites are offering up 'free' copies of her books. As I was reading along, I was appalled and horrified at what she was describing.
How on earth could anyone with even a semblance of a conscience actually have the audacity to do this kind of thing? Quite honestly it almost stuns me, but then the cynical side of me isn't surprised. I don't really care for the cynical side of me. I looked up the word audacity and it means among other things: bold or arrogant disregard of normal restraints.
What has happened to us as a society that some people think they are above the 'normal restraints'? Why is it that the one being stolen from is the one who is trying to track down and attempting to close these sites down. Frankly, while I was reading her post, I was amazed at how restrained she was in relating what's going on. She is "really ticked off". I am fucking and seriously pissed off that someone I respect is going through this - and it's not just her. She included links and I was revolted at how many authors works are being victimized by slime.
To those who do this kind of thing I say in my most harshest of tones - how dare you!!! Who the hell do you think you are and what gives you the right to steal from hard working authors who put their heart and soul into their writing. This is their living; their livelihood you are messing with. And why??? For some kind of pathetic jolly kick?? What a useless group you are.
And to those who download these files - you aren't any better - not any better at all. In fact you are worse!! You gotta know that what you are doing is wrong, yet you do it anyway. Sure I can understand the temptation. We are faced with temptation in one form or another every day. But that is why we have morals and scruples. We are faced with these kinds of choices every day and the decent person will make the right choice. If you visit these kinds of sites and download books that are stolen by slime then that is the wrong choice and you need to be called out on it. You need to feel shame in what you are doing and you need to stop. You need to get that conscience we were all born with working again. You need to think of the people you are ripping off and what it's costing them - both in sales and in anguish.
I know this goes on in other areas of entertainment and I'm just as upset with that too but novels and romance novels in particular are my passion. I have respect for authors, even those whose books I might not enjoy as much as others. Pamela states that the people who steal her books (and others) are a small but growing group. One of the best ways to stop them, is to stop using them, to think about how you would feel if you were robbed of the work that you do.