If you’ve followed the #Cockygate hashtag on Twitter or other social media platforms, you will know the romance community has been in an uproar recently. Actually, the entire writing community is up in arms and rightly so.
Because one author got greedy. By the way, I will not name her here as I do not in any way wish to give her free publicity on my blog. Chances are, you’ll already know her name. If not, the hashtag will provide those details.
This author, whose romance series features the word “cocky” in its titles, claims to have trademarked the word. She proceeded to send cease and desist letters to other authors whose books happen to have “cocky” in their titles.
Really? Cocky? That’s like trying to trademark the words “Love” or “Baby” or “Cowboy.” It’s a word commonly found in romance titles.
In sending these letters, threatening other authors financially, she has not only alienated them but the entire community. Romancelandia hasn’t taken kindly to it. In fact, neither have writers in other genres.
I am not a legal expert. I have never studied law. However, plenty of people in our genre have and they all seem to agree this author has made a mockery of the laws that have been set in place to protect us. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect to see a fellow author attacking her peers in this way. It sickens me.
She still has her supporters and they are welcome to her. I, for one, have never read her books and never will. She will never be welcome here on my blog. I will never seek her out for cross-promotion. And I am not the only one who has been saying these things. However, the author in question is now condemning those who are opposed to her antics, saying she is being bullied.
Lady, you have no idea what it is to be bullied. Come sit with me for a while. I’ll talk to you about being bullied.
Attacking others in your peer group is no way to get ahead. What she has done is most likely irreversible. In my opinion, her career is ruined. Of course, someone like this will probably just reinvent herself and reappear somewhere else.
What can you do? Put your money where your mouth is. Buy books from the authors she has attacked. Leave reviews for them. Support authors who need it most. There are plenty out there who are pouring their souls onto paper every day, people who would be only too happy to have your support. Be their champions. Tell your friends. Tell this author the buck stops here.
Thank you for reading.