Wednesday, May 03, 2006

she's just a kid

Schadenfreude has always been one of my favorite emotions--especially where writers under thirty are concerned. But it seems like the glee over Kaavya Viswanathan's plagiarism gaffe is getting out of hand. Yes, she goes to Harvard. Yes, she got a $500,000 advance for a book that we now know was plagiarized (an advance one presumes she'll have to return). But now that she's been Lewinskyed, condemned to fame-for-the-wrong-reasons ignominy, isn't it time for us to recall that she's only 19? Hell, when she committed her "crimes" she was probably a minor. Anybody who never plagiarized anything before they turned 20 raise your hand.

That's what I thought.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think the age issue is a double-edged sword for her. She used "I'm only 19" as a way to get her book published, so it seems like [insert Hindi word for chutzpah] to use "but I'm only 19" as a plagiarism defense. Most of us made it out of our teens without falsely claiming to have written a best seller. I, of course, wasn't so lucky, as any buyer of "Harry Potter and the Da Vinci Code of Madison County" will remember.