I posted about this awhile ago and wanted to update everyone on the recent developments in this plagiarism case. But first, I just wanted to say that I love books, reading and have come to know and respect a lot of authors. With today’s technology and social media it is easy to get to know your favorite authors. Even ten years ago I would only really know an author based on what was written on the book jacket. But now, I can really get to know them through their blogs, websites and social media. Authors are real people; they have their own lives going on and luckily are able to share their passion for writing with readers like me. Before August 10, I did not know Rachel Nunes at all. I had read a few of her books; I have found memories of my dear friend recommending one of her books back in high school. I loved it. So, I was shocked and upset when I heard that one of her books (one I actually had waiting on my Kindle) had been plagiarized. Not only had another author, Sam Taylor Mullens, stolen Rachel’s characters and story, but she had added sex scenes into a clean, Christian novel. When Rachel reached out to Mullens, she was not only rebuffed and Mullens refused to work with her, but then Mullens began an online attack of Rachel and her books.
When this all started unfolding and as I’ve watched it progress I have been so impressed with how Rachel has handled everything. She has chosen to take the high road; she has shown kindness and compassion and has a strong desire to make sure this does not happen to anyone else. I have been blessed to get to know Rachel better over the past few weeks and can honestly say she is a good person. She has been very careful about how this case is handled and wanted to make sure that even the perpetrator of this horrible crime was treated fairly.
I am happy to report that Mullens has been positively identified as Tiffanie Rushton, a Utah school teacher and while I am upset with what she has done and how she has acted over the past few weeks, I think it’s important to stress that this case is in the hands of very capable lawyers and that is where it should be. Even though Tiffanie has done some bad things, I would not want people to bully her or her family. Tiffanie hid behind at least seventeen fake profiles, she recently created a new author pen-name (Lucy Evans) and it’s very likely she would plagiarize again. It is important that her criminal activity is brought to light and that people know her name so they can protect themselves and their work. The fact is, Tiffanie will see justice without being bullied, Tiffanie has received a summons to appear in Federal court on complaints of copyright infringement, defamation, casting Rachel Ann Nunes in a false light, injurious falsehood, harassment, false advertising and deceptive trade practices. If the suit is successful, she faces statutory damages of $150,000, plus damages for each sale of the infringing work, damages to compensate for the other allegations in the complaint, and attorney's fees.
Like I mentioned before, Tiffanie has created a new pen-name of Lucy Evans, she is currently soliciting ARCs under her false names and if you have provided her ARCs you may be at risk. Known aliases to be leary of:
* Sam Taylor Mullens
* Lucy Evans
*Other aliases removed
UPDATE: New information has come to light. Apparently, Tiffanie Rushton used the names of her elementary students as her many many aliases. At least thirteen students names were used to review and promote erotic novels. I have removed their names from my blog. If I were one of their parents I would be furious. I am hoping the school and district will take action and hold Ms. Rushton accountable for this horrible misconduct and violation of trust.
Tiffanie has shown her true colors in the way she has handled herself over the past few weeks and even before then. She has used lies, deception and tried to bully Rachel and her supports in an attempt to cover her own tracks. She has shown no remorse and continually places blame on anyone but herself. Tiffanie created multiple identities to promote her own books, she’d give her books high ratings and raving reviews, all while leaving low rating and negative reviews for Rachel’s book.
Here is Rachel’s newest update on everything:
Also, a fellow blogger has written an excellent run down on everything, very informative. Visit his blog here: The John Doppler Affect
Please share this story on your own blogs, help spread the word and hopefully prevent other authors from falling victim to plagiarism.
You can also show your support by donating to Rachel’s GoFundMe fundraiser, she will also be releasing a series of anthologies where fellow authors have come together to show their support. More information to follow.