No, I Was Definitely Trolled and Thank You, Amazon!
So I returned home from an otherwise really nice vacation to find that Amazon had taken down the majority of the one-star reviews, accusing me of stealing from another author (one 2-star one wasn’t included in the initial complaint and another 1-star popped up after it was sent in). However, I took a look at a screen shot of the original one-star reviews, and I was aghast that it wasn’t just people saying I had stolen an idea from Ms. Nelson, but that I had actually plagiarized her work.
Record scratch. #holdupnow
I worked very hard on HER RUSSIAN BILLIONAIRE and I sweated bullets to get that book out of my head and on to my computer. As a writer, this is the absolute worst thing you could ever accuse me of. It makes me want to throw up that anyone would use my name and the word “plagiarize” in the same sentence.
Let me make a few things clear.
1. I have not read any of Latrivia Nelson’s books, save THE GRUNT, which I loved on a story level, but which I thought was technically horribly written.
2. From what I can see, none of these people have actually read HER RUSSIAN BILLIONAIRE. They’re all unverified — which means they didn’t buy the book through Amazon, which is weird, since from what my sales reports are telling me, I’ve sold exactly zero copies of RUSSIAN through non-Amazon sites.Since RUSSIAN is in KDP Select, all of the unverified reviewers must have stolen the book or collectively decided to use accounts they didn’t buy the book with in order to file their reviews. (Spoiler Alert: This isn’t very likely). A couple of reviews even had the exact same language.
3. So basically within a 24 hour period 7 reviews magically appeared from unverified reviewers, accusing me of plagiarism.
4. Every line from RUSSIAN that they’ve quoted to “prove” their plagiarism accusations can easily be obtained from the sample.
As I hope you can tell, I usually have a huge sense of humor in regards to just about everything.
However, I’ve stopped laughing.
I’ve also handed the case over to Amazon, and have been put in contact with Amazon Legal. Amazon tracks IP addresses and credit card numbers for everyone who leaves a review, so I’m really excited to see what they dig up. Either way, I’ll keep you updated.
Until then I’m just going to go back to writing. As it turns out, I don’t really have what it takes to fake beef like Kanye and Fifty Cent — especially when it comes to illegal actions like defamation of my character and libel, which this most certainly is.