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Returning Kindle Books After Reading Them: The New Piracy.

April 10, 2015

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New Trend: Recycling Trash, or One Hit Wonders Who Will Always Be Just That

October 8, 2015

It is official. Stephanie Meyers has announced that the release date for her latest book: Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined, with gender swapped characters.

 

What are gender swapped characters, you might ask. Well, Bella is now a guy named Beau, and Edward is now a female named Edythe.

 

Creative, right? WRONG!

 

In an age where people with no small measurable amount of talent manage to make it big, earning millions from producing poorly written crap, we can’t be surprised that the same people are recycling their garbage to milk what small amount of success they had.

 

Meyers had already fiddled with the idea of retelling her Twilight Saga from Edward’s point of view in Midnight Sun, but the manuscript was leaked, she got mad—okay, I’d be angry too if someone had leaked my work—and shelved the idea. At the time, the Twilight movies were still coming out and all anyone could talk about was Edward. But the Hoo-blah of Twilight has faded. Breaking Dawn Part 2 came out in 2012. It’s been over three years since Edward and Bella hit the screen with their screwed up relationship. Come on, Edward is old enough to be Bella’s great-grandfather! Clearly, being a vampire and living for 90 years doesn’t bring about any amount of maturity. But I digress. The public is no longer enthralled by Twilight.

 

Stephanie Meyers has faded.  Her novel, The Host, did not do very well; even the movie adaptation came and went without much fanfare, which is too bad because I liked the movie and thought it was better than Twilight. But Meyers hasn’t achieved much since Twilight. Twilight made her famous. Twilight made her a household name. Twilight is her one hit wonder, and how it became so successful will always be a mystery.

 

To keep her career as a writer going, she needs a new book. Most authors do this by writing a new one, creating new characters, creating a new story. How does she do it? The same way that E.L. James and Veronica Roth did—take the one book that made them successful, change a couple of things, slap on a new cover and title, and pass off it off as new. It’s a cheap and lazy attempt to continue milking profits from her one real success.

 

In an interview, Meyers said that she wanted to show that Bella wasn’t just a damsel in distress, but a “human in distress”. Uh… bullshit.  Come on, Meyers, admit the truth. You need money. Your publishers have probably been begging you for a new book. And let’s face it, you had the one story in you and have no more creative ideas. Republishing the same book with a few changed names is not ingenious.

 

I’m not surprised by what Stephanie Meyers has done. Veronica Roth republished bits of her Divergent series in a series of novellas called Four. It’s Divergent, but told from Four’s point of view. I’m sure it was her publisher’s idea to do this, but that doesn’t take away the fact that she is just republishing the same book with a different cover and title to continue capitalizing on the success of her one and only achievement as an author. That’s not imaginative. That’s just dishonest.

 

This past year, E.L. James—the woman who ripped off Twilight, passing it off as new and original by adding some of the most boring sex scenes ever written and made tons of money from it—did the same thing. Taking her cue from Meyer’s leaked Midnight Sun, and the success Roth had with her Four novellas, she republished Fifty Shades of Grey, calling it Grey. It’s Fifty Shades, but told from Christian Grey’s point of view. It’s the same stupid book—many passages were copied and pasted from the original—being passed off as new.

 

It’s pathetic that these authors have resorted to such tactics just to make a quick buck and try and remain relevant. They are talentless hacks who produced a one hit wonder. That’s it. Neither of them have produced anything new since then. Their combined talent would not even fill 1/8 of a teaspoon.

 

Roth’s Divergent had some promise, but it fell apart in Insurgent and Allegiant was a disaster that illustrated how her one success had gone to her head. She would have been better off saying, “F you” to her fans, because that’s what Allegiant accomplished.

 

I hope this trend of republishing the same book over and over, while pretending that it’s new, ends soon. These authors should show some respect for their fans by actually  producing something new, not rehashing the one thing that made them famous.  If Suzanne Collins pulls this same stunt with her Hunger Games series, she’ll get the same harsh criticism from me. Unfortunately, J.K. Rowling is starting to fall into this trap by constantly retweeting new tidbits of Harry Potter, and rewriting her series through Twitter, and she is even working on a new movie that will be released, which will be an American version of Harry Potter. As much as I like Harry Potter, it’s over. Let it go, Rowling.

 

My advice to these authors: move on. Your one hit wonders made people get lost in your world, but the books are written and the stories are over. We have the books and movies that we can reread and rewatch all we want. So, move on. Create something new. Quit trying to relive your glory days.

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