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New Signet Response on the Cassie Edwards Matter

Sent: Friday, January 11, 2008 1:02 PM
To: Jane Litte
Subject: New Cassie Edwards statement

Dear Jane,

Please find below a new statement from Signet re: the Cassie Edwards’ situation.

Our original comments were based on Signet’s review of a limited selection of passages. We believe the situation deserves further review. Therefore we will be examining all of Ms. Edwards’ books that we publish, and based on the outcome of that review we will take action to handle the matter accordingly. We want to make it known that Signet takes any and all allegations of plagiarism very seriously.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Teddypig
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 14:29:59

    Translation: Oops!

  2. azteclady
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 14:32:03

    (barely) better late than never.

    But it goes to show that making noise about the issue is essential.

  3. Nora Roberts
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 14:33:25

    Repeat of what I posted on SB:

    In the interest of fairness. The initial statement did indeed come after a limited review–and, I understand, a need to respond quickly. It was, no question, poorly worded.

    But the publisher is doing–and has been doing–what should be done from the beginning. Due diligence takes time, and in all fairness, everyone deserves due diligence.

    If anything, the response of readers and the publishers respect for that is responsible for this updated, and much more clear, statement.

  4. veinglory
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 14:41:34

    Perhaps they shouldn’t have jumped to the conclusion that the bloggers were whittering on about nothing–their release could have just said they were looking into it rather than explain how there was no problem when plenty of evidence to the contrary was openly available.

  5. Bev Stephans
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 14:45:14

    Sometimes, if we rattle the cage a lot, the zookeepers will pay attention to us.

  6. Charlene
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 14:53:10

    The new comment has just run on the AP as well:

  7. Karen Scott
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 15:12:10

    Ahhh, there is no better sound than that of people back-tracking like crazy. I can’t see the naysayers calling CNN, NY Times, USA Today or any of the other news networks, bitchy hateful beasts can you? *g*

    ‘Mean Girl Bloggers’ rock.

  8. Kalen Hughes
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 15:44:40

    And now my hair is no longer on fire . . . thank god.

  9. Aoife
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 15:49:02

    It must be the cynic in me, but: how much of the backtracking is because we the reading public made a fuss and wrote letters, and how much is because one of their bestselling authors (that’s you, Nora Roberts) went public with her displeasure?

    Which was a very gutsy thing to do.

    For some reason I have this mental image of Joel Grey in his Cabaret incarnation singing “Money makes the world go around…..”

    But, as I said before, I am a cynic.

  10. K. Z. Snow
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 16:21:36

    Now I’m wondering what Janet Dailey’s “psychological problem” was. A form of OCD (obsessive copying disorder) perhaps?

    Damn, I’m sorry. I’m guilty of occasionally typing words over which I have no control.

  11. Kalen Hughes
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 16:39:43

    I take it as proof that public shaming still works. Their response sure took a turn when this hit AP, CNN, etc. I’ll be waiting to hear what conclusion they come to and what action/s they take . . .

  12. Charlene Teglia
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 17:11:18

    You know, I’m pleased with the responses from Signet and from RWA. Due diligence is called for. Plagiarism is a very serious issue, and I’m glad it’s being taken seriously, not swept under the rug or dismissed as “it’s just a romance novel, who cares”. Yes, I realize these are follow-ups and not the initial responses, but I’d rather see them being careful with such a serious claim.

    And this whole thing does underscore how very passionately romance readers (and writers) do care and hold the books to a high standard.

  13. Kalen Hughes
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 17:22:51

    Any word from Dorchester? All the most recent releases (re-releases?) appear to be from Leisure.

  14. Robin
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 17:32:25

    This response is infinitely better than the first, but IMO it doesn’t cancel out the distinction that Penguin initially drew between academic and popular fiction regarding attribution. They are still not off the hook for that in my eyes, and that’s a big one, at least to me, because it goes to the accepted standard of intellectual honesty in books I spend a lot of money and time on.

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