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Plot stealing

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princess garnet
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Plot stealing

Post by princess garnet » Fri August 12th, 2011, 8:35 pm

I came across this interesting article about the late Dame Barbara Cartland and Georgette Heyer--previously unpublished letters about allegations of plagarism dating back to the 1950s. A book is forthcoming.
Last edited by princess garnet on Sat August 13th, 2011, 4:10 pm, edited 2 times in total.

SGM
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Post by SGM » Fri August 12th, 2011, 8:43 pm

Ha! Eventually. These accusations have been well known for quite some time but everyone has been very cagey about exactly who the culpit was (although everyone knew). Jane Aiken Hodges deals with the plagarism to some extent in her book about Heyer but never names names. There were other authors that Heyer was quite upset about and she didn't take matter lightly.
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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Fri August 12th, 2011, 8:54 pm

Oh my. That is interesting.
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Michy
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Post by Michy » Sat August 13th, 2011, 1:58 am

If the plagiarism was as blatant and obvious as stated in this article, I wonder why it was never stopped? It doesn't sound as though Ms. Heyer would have been afraid to file a suit.

It doesn't surprise me at all that Cartland lifted her stories from someone else. Even as a young teenager I never could read her stuff - waaaaay too fluffy.

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Post by annis » Sat August 13th, 2011, 7:12 am

I was always struck by a basic hypocritical ickiness about Cartland's work, and even though I went through a historical romance stage, her work didn't appeal. Recently (thanks to dear Madame Guillotine) I rediscovered a rare BC novel which had stuck in my mind called Desire of the Heart (although I had forgotten Cartland wrote it). I re-read it not too long ago and (sorry Madame G) was dismayed by its moral bankruptcy - ugh! It made me feel positively contaminated :(

Maybe suing other authors for plagiarism wasn't the done thing during the period when Heyer was writing her novels?

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Post by SGM » Sat August 13th, 2011, 9:44 am

[quote=""annis""]Maybe suing other authors for plagiarism wasn't the done thing during the period when Heyer was writing her novels?[/quote]

Well, let's face it Heyer's husband was a barrister so could knew how to get the best legal advice.

I think that Heyer very much wanted to take the matter further but was discouraged by others (I get the impression this included her publishers, but I might be wrong about that). She was in constant conflict with the tax man and the legal process in the UK is very very very expensive.
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LoveHistory
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Post by LoveHistory » Sat August 13th, 2011, 8:05 pm

Dame Barbara's son said this:

“I’ve never heard that story. It’s more likely, I would have thought, the other way round.”
Oh puh-leeze! Right. Georgette Heyer copied Cartland's work before it was written. Sure.

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Post by SGM » Sat August 13th, 2011, 8:50 pm

I only read one Barbara Cartland when I was very young - it was obvious to attempt to, after all Cartland had written loads. But I really couldn't get on with it. I was probably too young to realise why but in later years I came to realise that, of course, although she had the plots - after all they were Heyer's (plotting is an ability I wish Heyer's more recent emulators had managed to pick up from her) - but she didn't have the humour, charm or the lightness of touch.

I am not claiming any great depth for Heyer's Regency novels. They are just fun (well-researched fun) with plots that actually work and great dialogue that you can go back to in even in later years. Cartland really couldn't copy that even if she stole a great deal of Heyer's terminology.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

annis
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Post by annis » Sun August 14th, 2011, 1:41 am

Wonder if the Cartland estate will sue the author of the forthcoming book?!

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LoobyG
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Post by LoobyG » Sun August 14th, 2011, 3:04 pm

What an interesting article, thanks for posting Princess Garnet. Makes me glad that I've never been tempted to open a Cartland book... :p

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