Original article posted at ‘Huff Post Books’
A Utah author says a schoolteacher plagiarized her Christian romance novel, added graphic sex scenes and passed it off as her own.
In a case she says brings to light plagiarism in the burgeoning world of online self-publishing, Rachel Ann Nunes of Orem filed a federal lawsuit in August against a Layton teacher, Tiffanie Rushton, who she says cut and pasted large sections from an electronic copy of her book.
Nunes wrote “Love to the Highest Bidder” in 1998 about two art dealers, one from New York and the other from California, who meet while competing for an Indian Buddha statue and fall in love.
It was first published by a Utah-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints-oriented publisher. After the book went out of print, Nunes got the copyright and put out a slightly revised e-book version on Amazon.com with the name “A Bid for Love.”
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Rachel Ann Nunes learned to read when she was four, beginning a lifetime fascination with the written word. She avidly devoured books then and still reads everything she can lay hands on, from children’s stories to science articles. She began writing in the seventh grade and is now the author of nearly fifty published books, including the popular Autumn Rain series and the picture book Daughter of a King.
Her most recent novel is Blinded (An Autumn Rain Novel) and Before I say Goodbye (Whitney Award winner). Rachel and her husband, TJ, are the parents of three boys and four girls. Rachel loves camping with her family, traveling and meeting new people, and, of course, writing. As a stay-at-home mother of seven, it isn’t easy to find time to write, but she will trade washing dishes or weeding the garden for an hour at the computer any day!
Her only rule about writing is to never eat chocolate at the computer. “Since I love chocolate and writing,” she jokes, “my family might never see me again.” Rachel writes Monday through Friday in a home office, often with a child on her lap. She takes frequent breaks from writing to build Lego towers, practice reading, or go swimming with the kids.