Author Pirates Copies Of Own Books To Put Them In E-book Format

Most publishers and some authors believe online piracy robs them of potential income, but at least one writer has managed to turn the digital pilfering of his wares into a potential gain. He says he’s downloaded copies of out-of-print work with the idea of converting the files into legit e-books he can sell.

On his site, the author says he’s disappointed with the quality of the pirated manuscripts and is asking for fans’ help to set things right:

I embarked upon a Cunning Plan. I discovered that my work had been pirated, and was available for free on BitTorrent sites located in the many outlaw server dens of former Marxist countries. So I downloaded my own work from thence with the intention of saving the work of scanning my books– I figured I’d let the pirates do the work, and steal from them. While this seemed karmically sound, there proved a couple problems.

First, the scans were truly dreadful and full of errors. (Even if you’re desperate for my work, I can’t really recommend them.) A lot of time has been spent copy-editing, both by me and by Kathy– which isn’t really so bad, because this would have to be d0ne anyway.
But second, apparently a few of my books were so obscure that they flew under the radar of even the pirates! You can’t imagine how astounded I was when I discovered this.
I could really use some decent scans of some of my books, and I figure some among you must have better scanners and OCR than the piece of crap that’s currently sitting on my shelf.

The author offers a signed copy of any one of his books chosen by a fan who gives him what he needs, as well as a mention in the e-book.

Crowdsource, Please [Walter Jon Williams via Boing Boing]