Hello, my friends, I’m sorry that I have not been on here for a while, and that is because I have been hard at work on The Raven Prophecy. That’s right, for I’m currently still working very hard on The Raven Prophecy. I will get to the latest updates later in this post; however, there is something more important that needs to be discussed.
If you have not heard, my dear writing friends and members of the writing community, there is a writer by the name of Faleena Hopkins, who is an independent author that publishes/writes her novels in the romance genre. The name of her series is called the Cocker Brother series, which she has now trademarked. This is fine for that is part of her brand; however, she has now trademarked the word “Cocky” in a font that she does not own or had permission from the makers of the font to trademark.
The other part of this claim/made up ownership of the word “Cocky” is that this woman is writing letters to any author that has the word “Cocky” in the title of their book and asking them to stop using the word “Cocky” and to change their title, cover, and any part that uses the word “Cocky.” This is not just for new titles of novels that have the word “Cocky” in them but also previously published works that were published before 2016. This is what the writing community has been dealing with over the weekend. Granted, I’m pleased to say that the Romance Writers Association (RWA) is getting involved and their lawyers are also helping any other that has received a letter from Faleena Hopkins.
There are many points, that have been made by authors across the community on Twitter, and Facebook for the most part. There have even been a few that have expressed themselves on Amazon in the reviews comments and one book got so many negative reviews that she closed the comment section down for that book. But on the other hand, her readers are also going after any author that went after Faleena and also made comments on these author’s books as well.
There are so many ways that this is getting out of hand. I agree that a stance needs to be taken on her trademark of the word “Cocky” and the font that she is also claiming is hers, which it is not. Secondly, this is not only troubling for the romance genre industry for any industry of fiction, for it means that we have to check to make sure that every word that we use in our titles is not copyrighted or trademarked. Thirdly, from an independent author and publisher stance, there is just more than just making a few little changes for it takes time and money. Fourth, I’m upset that her readers are out there calling us bullies when their beloved author is being a bully to writers first. Fifth, what she is doing is so wrong on so many levels.
I should include in this conversation as to her reason for why she is doing this, it’s because her readers have complained that they lost money for they bought books that were not her’s. Okay, the answer there is that if the reader can’t see her name on the cover then they should not have bought the book in the first place. She also states that so many romance authors are copying her. Sorry, that doesn’t fly either when you look at so many romance novels and they look almost the same except for the title, the font of the title and the author’s name. All you have to do is do a search in google for romance novel covers and dozens if not hundreds will pop up and some of them will look the exact same, except for the changes listed above.
To end this discussion, I have some choice words for Ms. Faleena Hopkins:
Dear Ms. Hopkins,
Welcome, to the writing community but please, take your shit and leave. You are not a productive member to the writing community, and your “loyal” readers not productive readers to the reading community. You have called us writers, even the ones that never you knew you until you popped up with your ridiculous claim over a word that has been used in the dictionary and a thousand other places for hundreds of years.
You have no real claim over the word and to futher the point, your readers must know how to find your name on the cover of your books. If this the way that you want spend your money, then fine spend your money but you are not only hurting yourself but you are hurting others as well, and that also goes from an ethical point as well.
Futhermore, as another author put it, you not only burt the bridge but you destroyed it. You are not better than dirt at this point, and I hope you enjoy being there. Please, don’t come to any writing functions, for if you do you will find several drinks and food thrown at your face. Please, leave the community and never return. Also may karma bit you in the ass.
Faerie Rose Press.
Sorry, if I ranted it just there, but this woman just has to know that the community is not small and she should also stop thinking that she is the only author in the romance genre, or in the writing world.
Dear reader, if you would like to learn more about this issue, please, google the term cockygate hashtag and it will be explained more in general. As far as she herself goes she is one nasty piece of work and she is playing the victim rather well. But it doesn’t fly when you are hurting the community not helping.
Here is a current update on The Raven Prophecy:
I would like to start this update by saying that I’m editing the parts that I have written so far and retweaking a new draft, which includes new chapter headings and new cover and title pages. I know in the past that I said that I would not re-do my cover but I have and this is the last and final time that the cover will ever be worked on. So here they are one is for the paperback/hardcover and one is for the e-book:
Thank you for joining me today and I hope that you will continue to follow the updates on #cockygate and my updates for The Raven Prophecy.