My short story has been pirated at Amazon

Well, this was certainly not what I expected to find; occasionally I check the search engine links on my novels.  Today I happened to choose the new release, just out of curiosity.  To my utter astonishment  “50 Years Waiting” was showing up as a Kindle release.

I never put my books on Amazon.  What in the world was it doing there?

Someone had freely downloaded the story from Smashwords (the only place it is legally available), and on the 16th of March, uploaded it for sale to Amazon.  I was so gobsmacked, I just stared at the page.  I know this has happened to other authors, Nicky Charles for instance.  She writes free paranormal romances, and for ages has had this problem.  She has finally resorted to uploading her novels onto Amazon for .99 cents to fight the pirates.

Pirates, dude!  Who in the world wants to pirate my stories?

Well, someone.  Thus the rest of my afternoon will be spent sorting this issue, but in the meantime I’ve put a disclaimer on this site’s home page.  I don’t think I need to take Nicky Charles’ route; I don’t have even a smidgen of her readers.  But it’s the point.  The point is that I wrote that short story (It’s a short story for goodness sake!) and have chosen not to profit from it.  The pirate didn’t even bother to remove the Smashwords License Notes.

Just a small travail in an author’s walk.

Update: Originally I didn’t link to the Amazon site, not wishing to give it any more notice, however, it’s here, where I have left a one-star review, noting that it is a pirated copy.  If you feel so inclined, please do the same, or perhaps click that my review was helpful.  Until I can sort this out, I want to make it as difficult as possible for the thief to earn a penny from this stolen manuscript.

Updated again:  As of 21 March, 2013, 10.20 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time, the site has been shut down.  I have yet to hear from Amazon proper, but “50 Years Waiting” no longer graces Amazon’s shelves.  Thanks so much to all who left comments, wrote reviews, and noted those reviews were helpful.  More on this soon…

56 thoughts on “My short story has been pirated at Amazon

  1. Beth

    What a story. I’m sitting in my study, drinking coffee, struggling to write, and now trying to imagine someone intentionally making a decision to become a word pirate — and then doing it. And trying to imagine if that had happened to me, and how I would feel. Just like you did: deeply shocked and upset. Thanks for sharing this cautionary tale.

  2. Karen

    I’m late (as usual!) but just wanted to say I’m so glad there was a speedy resolution to this horrible situation. I just don’t know why someone would do this – did she think you wouldn’t notice?! Fantastic there was so much support, proving most people really are good 🙂


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