Carry that Weight, Carry That Weight A Long Time
Yeah, I stole that line from the Beatles. I don’t think they really care. Why? Because it’s just a line.
Do you buy that?
In some ways, it’s nothing. It’s just a line. They made millions of dollars. They won’t miss the royalties on one measly line.
But I look at it this way, they wrote the line and they have it protected under their artistic license. If I use their line and don’t give them credit, it’s a violation of their rights.
So why am I worrying about the Beatles? It’s not so much the Beatles, although they are a favorite band. It’s the principle of the thing. It’s not cool to thieve. And it hits very close to home for me. I write. I love writing. I love hearing from my readers and knowing my words made a difference. It makes me feel good when they tell me they want to know about one of the secondary characters.
But it grinds my gears when I see my words being passed around. I’m not talking about friends sharing a paperback book back and forth. That’s fine. It’s not exactly the easiest time for any of us.
I’m all for getting things free and all for finding new authors. What I don’t like is piracy. It doesn’t matter if it’s copying a Metallica song, downloading a version of the Beatles without permission, or making an ebook available for anyone to download simply because it’s “tough on everyone”.
Why am I on this soapbox? Simple. I don’t write to make lots of money. I write because it’s my passion. I write because I have characters who want their stories told. There’s blood, sweat, tears, and a part of my life in those words, no matter how long or short. I and all other authors, be it Stephen King, Nora Roberts, or even the reality show contestants who score a big book deal, don’t deserve to have the work we’ve slaved over treated as worthless.
No, I’m not saying what Stephen King writes is worthless. Far from it. What I’m saying is when someone puts a copy of one of his or one of mine or anyone’s books in digital form, up for anyone to download, we lose. The author loses the royalties he or she deserves.
We want to be paid for the job we do. We want to get paid for doing what we love. When someone pirates a book, then the author loses. The person downloading the story actually loses too because the person who offered the book for download is violating the rights of the author. It’s just like those warnings on DVD’s telling you not to copy a DVD because it’s against the law.
It’s not pretty and it’s not fair.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t tell your friends about new authors. By all means, spread the love, but do it legally.
Besides, ebooks are cheaper than print books in most cases and when stored on the computer, ereader, or other digital devices it weighs a lot less.
Wendi's newest book, Tangled Up, is scheduled for release on January 24 from Total-E-Bound Books.
About the author: Thanks for enjoying this work by Wendi Zwaduk. By day she’s a SAHM of one son, two dogs, and two cats, but at night she lets her inner muse run wild and writes tales of love won, lost, and won again. If she’s not at her computer, she can be found at her local dirt tracks cheering for the Late Model cars or haunting the local library in search of new authors. Check out her blog http://www.wendizwaduk.
blogspot.com and website www.wendizwaduk.com.