Authors, please. File your copyrights on all your work. Protect yourself against things like this:
I found out the answer to that question the night of July 14th while preparing to leave for RWA. On July 10th, an author named Michael J Wagner posted Shane
on Amazon, and in no time at all a discussion popped up on the page
entitled “Is this JP Barnaby’s Aaron”? Someone who had read and enjoyed
Aaron contacted Dreamspinner Press who responded immediately, even
though they were thousands of miles from home at the UK Meet Up. They
requested my copyright documentation, so I immediately filed with the US
Copyright office and sent the registration number to them. I also
informed them how to prove that the book was plagiarized because if the
offending author hadn’t taken the time to chance certain passages, the
book would not make sense by merely changing character names. I also
informed them that if needed, I could provide time-stamped emails of
drafts. There would be no doubt the book belonged to me.
The longer I thought about it, the angrier I got. It wasn’t about the
money. The man had even stolen my dedication and supplanted it with
someone else’s name. Aaron is my soul. He came to me one night and woke
me from a sound sleep to tell me about his monsters in the dark. He
shared his story with me because we have the same monsters. By stealing
my words, and taking my experiences, he tried to take something from me.
But I am no longer that scared little girl hiding in the closet from
her monsters. Sweet little Trish isn’t here right now, honey—it’s all JP
now, and you will not take my boys from me. Aaron deserves
better than merely being tossed aside while someone else steals his
identity. Spencer is a strong and brilliant character who fought all his
life to be who he is. You will not take that from either of them.
You picked the wrong book, my friend.