I recently helped run a short story contest for Second Wind Publishing, LLC — the first contest that was sponsored solely by the company — and it went smoothly. Until last week. That’s when we found out one of the finalists had copied a story from another writer who had posted it on the Internet. Whoooo. So not the thing to do!
Deborah J Ledford, a friend and fellow author keeps warning me about posting my writing on the Internet since such episodes are not uncommon, but I still persist in posting just about everything I write except for my novels. And even then, I post the first chapters on various sites. It might be prudent to be careful of what I post, but I have only one way of selling my books — getting known. And the only way I have of getting known is to write articles, bloggeries, mini fiction (100 word stories), whatever my brain can conjure up in the hopes of attracting some attention.
The way I figure it, a person can decide to trust everyone and post at will or distrust everyone and never post. So far, it’s been worth the risk. One of my blog posts was copied once, but I notified Google, and they made the people remove it. More importantly, I have made many friends because of my posts. I’d hate to have to worry about posting what I write — what new friends might I end up not meeting if I curtailed my writing? Still, it’s something to be aware of.