Thursday, October 1, 2009

Plagiarized...Three Days Later

Whew…can you believe the response? That guy sure picked the wrong writing community.

As we all know, a writer by vocation pens alone. Some have called it a lonely life. I don’t know if I agree with that. What I do know is if I excluded the online community of writers I scribe beside, I wouldn’t have another writer’s voice cheering me on each and every day.

Three days ago, all I wanted was my daily dose of flash fiction. Who knew what opening that e-mail would do? And how far the echo of outrage would travel?

If this experience has taught us anything, it’s that the internet world of writers (and especially, small-press horror writers) is very, very small. For the most part, we’re all familiar with each other’s names and writing-styles. We know the editors and they know our work. But most of all, we know what line not to cross, and we’re willing to lay it all down and defend it.

It's brought us all closer.

We’ll never completely stop plagiarism from happening again to one of us, but neither will we be silent about it. Something has changed within us. Where once we may have remained a passive observer, we now stand vigilant, ready to strike back, and ready to identify the predator lurking in our midst.

My deepest thanks to all of the writers and editors who banded together with me in this time of crisis, and proved the value of our craft. The bevy of e-mails, tweets, and support I received on my blog from every walk of life has been like manna from heaven.

I never thought anyone would bother to steal any of my words. Thank you all for helping me take them back.

-Angel Zapata

The following is a collection of links created by each of you on your blogs, websites, and forums about that plagiarist scoundrel, Richard Ridyard. Sorry if I missed any:


  1. If anyone anywhere had the audacity to try this lark again within OUR community, I think we may have all just put him/her off a tad!!!

  2. Quite an impressive list of links! Thanks to you and everyone else who took the time to amass the info - and to many more who took the time to read and voice their support.

  3. The link list is a great testament to the response. Let's get back to writing now - while remaining vigilant, of course.

  4. Angel: There is no lower life form than a plagiarist. Steal my money, steal my car, whatever - you are a thief. Steal the ideas of my mind and soul, you are something far worse. Good on you for pursuing this with such tenacity. -- Mykal

  5. Angel~
    I am so proud of you, for your wisdom and your bravery in this matter.
    You did your homework and looked out for your fellow man.
    You have an amazing mind with a matching amazing heart.

    I love you so much!

  6. Wow! That's quite a list. Be proud of yourself, Angel. You did great work.

  7. Thanks so much for the links and for shining the light on this guy. This, in particular, was a touching post.

  8. Hey Mykal great quote - "Steal my money, steal my car, whatever - you are a thief. Steal the ideas of my mind and soul, you are something far worse." That pretty much sums it up for me.

  9. Thanks again, Angel! I look forward to reading this list -- & reading more of your words. (This time, under YOUR name.)

  10. The weasel is not afraid to show his face already:

    Do you believe the size of his cojones?

  11. Well, I've submitted a comment on the above-mentioned story on powderburnflash pointing back to Angel's original post about this.

  12. KJ

    Thanks to both you and Corey, Aldo over at Powder Burn Flash contacted me yesterday for more information. I believe he's still in the process of authenticating the story source prior to removal, which of course is his prerogative.

    Thanks again for remaining vigilant.