Teenager and Miss Haar-vaaaard undergraduate, with a half-million dollar book deal under her belt has been caught plagiarizing, in her very first novel. Apparently she had difficulties coming up with her own plot lines … and words.
Read a summary here, and look out for witty quote from an English Professor at the end of the piece.
Each of the three books involved in this little fracas are obviously aimed at teenaged girls, so it’s not as though we’re examining hoity toity literature or anything, but it’s still fascinating to see how the plagiarizing Miss Haar-vaaaard takes the original crisp and well paced text and mangles it into something ponderous and awkward.
For a few shinny moments Miss Haar-vaaaard had a shit load of money, the world at her feet and her entire radiantly successful life ahead of her. Ooops, where did the world go?
Update: the book by Miss Haar-vaaaard has finally been pulled off the shelves, however:
“Little Brown (publishers) has said the book will be revised as quickly as possible.” (The Weekend Australian, 29-30 April 2006)
By whom, we wonder:
It would seem that Miss Haar-vaaaard may not have been the only person to have verbatim “internalized” two entire books by another author. A “book packager”, going by the new name of Alloy Entertainment, helped Miss Haar-vaaaard to:
“conceptualise and map out the plot. Although there has been no suggestion the actual writing was done by anyone other than Viswanathan, it is highly unusual for fiction to be packaged this way, suggesting that the author was regarded as a marketing opportunity as much as a writer.” (The Age, 29 April 2006)
No suggestion that “the actual writing” was done by anyone else, and yet, for reasons not explained by anyone, the copyright for the book is held jointly between Miss Haar-vaaaard and the President of Alloy Entertainment, Leslie Morgenstein. Now that’s an unusual copyright arrangement.