Sooo, a Bit of a Delicate Subject

As the title of the post says, I have to address a bit of a delicate subject. I have let it slide for a bit, but unfortunately a few little recent events have cropped up and I figured it might be easier to head them off if I just spit it out.

Quite often, I get private emails from you guys, and that is great. Sometimes you send over links to things I might’ve missed, or cover or release info, or just ask questions. All of that is good, and I really appreciate it. But on the flip side of that, for the past few months I have been getting a few emails (and post comments, but more on that later) that have been asking me where someone can download a certain book, or series, for free. I always try to answer emails, so at first, I either linked to Amazon or the Book Depository and said that is where I get my books, or links to The Book Outlet for discounted titles. Most of the time, I didn’t hear back (which is fine), but if I got back the “NO. I mean where can I download for FREE?” replies, I simply say I have no clue. That usually wraps things up pretty quickly.

But, for some reason, a certain former subscriber here at Wicked Scribes felt I was lying. Perhaps holding out the holy grail of free book download sites, I guess? Anyways, an exchange of emails ended with this person saying that they were done with “supporting” Wicked Scribes since I was a bitch (eh, true), and it must be nice to be rich enough to afford all of those books (eh, whatever). There were also several comments in posts where people asked for links where they could download a particular book for free, and I deleted them as spam.

So, here goes. I am no angel. I have downloaded my share of music in my time, but I deleted it all and am slowly building my songlist back up through iTunes. I have downloaded movies in my day, too, but I got rid of them all and now I buy blu-rays when they are on sale. I did, one time, pirate a copy of Murder Game from Christine Feehan. I had my copy on order, but it was delayed in a postal strike and I was totally desperate. I read about 3 chapters, then felt so damn guilty that I deleted it. Then I bought 2 more copies – one for a friend and one to donate to the library. Never did it again. I buy my books. I don’t know where to download them or get them for free. Sorry. Don’t know, don’t need to know. Any further emails asking will get the standard “No clue” response, and any comments in posts will be deleted as spam. Sorry for the long rant, but I thought I might be able to head off further awkwardness if I just said it upfront.

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15 thoughts on “Sooo, a Bit of a Delicate Subject

  1. JudyV says:

    You go girl! It’s your blog and you are entitled to block those users that are offensive! If I were to download “free” books, I certainly wouldn’t be asking the owner of a blog where to get them! That is pretty bold!

  2. nicki442 says:

    Good for you for speaking up about folks pestering you for free book links. I too am poor and therefore buy my books at HalfPriceBooks, or Amazon if I’m desperate enough to pay full price, lol. I also have about 5,000 free ebooks on my Kindle. All folks have to do is go to Amazon and search for “free” in the Kindle store and poof! Hundreds of titles. Or check out the author’s website, subscribe to their newsletters. Many authors offer freebies that way. People are clearly too lazy to do a little searching, or reading of other blogs and review sites where authors offer giveaways. I’ll never be able to read all of the free ebooks I have that I obtained easily, and legally. Bravo for you telling the lazybones to screw off (politely), and if they are so worried about the few free copies that are offered to reviewers from authors or publishers, they should direct their inquiries to them.

  3. dougmeeks says:

    I get tons of free books and turn down more than I accept, it is called writing reviews. You have to start someplace and many indie authors will give you a book if you will just write a review. Get an account at Netgalley and take time to write a good profile (this is a major part of how they determine if they approve a book for you).

    Subscribe to emails from places like Read Freely and Bookbub who many times tell you what books are being given away for FREE on Amazon or for less than $1.

    Bottom line: If you are too lazy to offer authors anything for their work, you will get very little in return, pretty much like life “Don’t be disappointed with the results you got for the work you did not do”..

    I crossed the 1000 reviews written mark on Amazon last month and it took several years but in return I can just about get a free copy of any book I want if I know when it is supposed to be released.

    I set up a FaceBook page for posting links to my reviews and have new authors offering me books almost daily (which makes me think I have not been supporting Wicked Scribes with reviews as much as I should). So anyone who might want free books, all you need is a Kindle and a decent bit of motivation. You will get better at them the more you write šŸ™‚

    PS – On NetGalley if you write enough reviews for certain publishers they give you blanket approval for ANY of their books, several of them like Entangled allow me to have any book they have but obviously, you have to actually review them and post on Amazon/Goodreads/etc. Today is as good a time to start as any šŸ™‚

    • Dawn says:

      I was going to mention NetGalley, but Doug said it best. I know I am waaay behind on getting my reviews up — I feel so bad, but my paying job still has to take precedence over my hobby — but I guess that will be what summer vacation is for.

      Unfortunately, I have noticed there appears to be a growing sense of entitlement in our society, whether it is being owed free books (as is the case here), or, in my case, students who think they deserve A’s (or at least a passing grade) for doing nothing at all.

      I don’t know where I found them, but there are a couple of sites that you can sign up for that will send you daily emails with free or discounted books – BookGorilla, Bargain Booksy, Book Brag, & Love Kissed Book Bargain. And of course, as mentioned, Amazon has pages of freebies. So what if it isn’t that specific book you want at that moment? If it wasn’t for the freebies at Amazon, I never would’ve started reading half the authors I now do!

  4. Tavia says:

    Hi K: A few years ago, I had a couple of “IT” guys who offered me sites for “free” books. I went to look. There was nothing there for me, but all of those authors deserved to be paid. It is sad, some write music and books, some sing, our world is full of talented people and we all benefit. Most of us need to earn a living and deserve to be paid for our talents and efforts. I am with you, if I want music or books, I pay for them. Keep up the good fight. If anyone gives you too much grief, kick them to Delete. Your site is one of my favourites. Be well and keep up your GREAT work. Tavia

  5. cheryl says:

    It is a sad state when there are people who expect freebie everything. Yep … we all live on a budget but if you need a “freebie” go to your local library. Get a card … go online an download books or get the book. It is not that hard but there are always cranky folk out there who like to stir the pot and make others their scapegoat.
    Just put a blurb that this is your website and you have the right to block email or blog entries… you should not have to put up with rudeness from anyone.

  6. barbtaub says:

    It is a mystery to me why so many people feel they have the right to free copies of anything on the net. Would they go into a shoe store and demand the latest designer shoes for free? Call their hairdresser a bitch for charging money for that haircut? Go to a restaurant and tell the chef they want the daily special as a gift?

    I would bet those same people would be shocked if they went to to their job and were told that they were now expected to provide their labor for free.

    Thank you for your rant! As a writer, it’s comforting to know there is at least one person with the bizarre idea that my hard work is worth paying for. You are my hero!

  7. snapdragon says:

    I use the library pretty extensively. If someone is looking for a free download they need to check out their local library. Either that or get onto Amazon and look under free.

    Good for you for sticking up for yourself!

  8. kaleigha says:

    Thanks for the understanding, everyone – I thought I might tick some people off, but I thought it might be better in the long run. And those are some great suggestions for free reading, too.

  9. Monika says:

    You should just delete those people, really, the nerve of them! I live on a budget, too, and books are one of the few indulgences of mine. I don’t know why people feel so entitled to free books; don’t misunderstand me, I like free books, too, but I always see them as a gift, as something special. I’m sigend up at NetGalley, but there you are required to write reviews of the books that you get to read in advance and I spend an average of 2 hours on a 500 word review, so sometimes I feel it’s easier to buy the book for 7 bucks or less than writing a review. Also, as other commentators have said there are lots of free books around; I would only like to point out Ilona Andrews’ Innkeeper Chronicles, of which they are presently writing the third installment and which is unbelievably awesome. Even if I have read them as a free serial I always buy them when they come out in book form.
    I am too lazy to keep my own blog, so I really enjoy yours and I am very grateful that you gave me the opportunity (and exposure) of featuring a few of my reviews on your blog.
    Cynthia Eden just posted a link to 24 free PNR books a few days ago, and though I don’t like steampunk, I am now completely hooked on Meljean Brook: after reading Wrecked, I downloaded The Kraken King (as I remembered Doug’s very favorable review of it) and what can I say: Doug was absolutely right: it is an outstanding, memorable, gripping, exciting, exotic, beautiful story, I couldn’t put it down and read it in one day. So if you are looking for great, free books, then go to: http://kitrocha.com/dark-dangerous-free/

    • dougmeeks says:

      LOL, I wrote Meljean Brook and asked her what she was going to do now since she had already written one of the best books in existence šŸ™‚ You can only go down šŸ™‚

      • Monika says:

        Yeah, it’s perfect, and to think that I never would have picked it up if I hadn’t read the free short story and your review. I am so not into steampunk and actually I found the title off-putting, too, though it’s growing on me. I’ve now finished The Iron Duke and it’s not half bad either. I love how intelligent her books are and how easily and unobtrusively she manages to slip in quite strong social criticism, on top an of exciting adventure and a great love story.

  10. Emma says:

    The fact that you have to write about this at all, makes me spout steam out of my ears.
    It’s ridiculous.
    If they were actually asking about “legal” downloads, that’s one thing.
    But they aren’t. I purchase eBooks regularly from Amazon that are free. I follow a page on FB that shares tons of links from Amazon, etc of freebie books. That’s as far as I’d go.
    But to ask you, I am truly sorry, you have had to go through this.

  11. Jean says:

    You’re awesome. Support the artist and pay for the product they create whether it’s books, music or some other form of art. I derive so much pleasure from reading, music, movies etc. I don’t understand how anyone can begrudge paying a fair price for a book or album. Keep on.

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