Atheism hasn’t always been my passion. For much of my life, the community was non-existent. It wasn’t until I found myself watching the Atheist Experience, debates featuring Harris as well as Hitchens, and read the works of the “Four Horsemen”. It was then that I found my calling; a position that I alarmingly agreed with. I first acquired a Blogspot blog and began typing away. My wife then suggested that I should write a book because my history of writing and passion for the subject seemed to be an obvious choice. And it was.
As I was working through my first full length book, I began to scout publishing companies. I contacted a few with discouraging results. That was until I found Dangerous Little Books. CJ Werleman was first to contact me. He was pleased with my writing but the manuscript at the time was too short. With this encouragement, I persevered and accomplished one of my dreams. Once I felt comfortable, I submitted my finished manuscript. I remember it very clearly. My wife and I were fishing, enjoying a wonderful July night. That was when I received an email from CJ telling me that Dangerous Little Books would gladly publish my work. I was excited! It was almost impossible to erase the smile from my face.
Now it was at that point that I began to familiarize myself with Werleman. I found him to be a competent author and blogger. His words were enjoyable to read and I found myself agreeing with many of his points. He supported my writing and for that I was very grateful. I felt accomplished knowing a prominent atheist author found my work compelling. I was on my way up! That has been all well and good, but recently Werleman has found himself in a bit of a controversy.
After viewing two published articles by the Godless Spellchecker (One and Two), it became aware to me that Werleman may be guilty of plagiarism. As an author, I found this news saddening. Werleman delivered to me the most exhilarating news of my life, now this wonderful gentleman was being accused of of something I absolutely despise. I spent most of today at work but in the past few hours I familiarized myself with the accusations. With a recent article published by the Daily Banter, it now seems to me that the evidence is very much not in his favor. It sickens me to say I hope this all works out for him in this affair but I’m not certain that it will. As a writer, I do draw inspiration from fellow authors and speakers but I would never think to entirely borrow passages from their previous works. And it seems to me as though Werleman has.
Until Werleman addresses these issues apart from Twitter, I don’t want to entirely believe he’s guilty but the evidence is hard to argue against. My correspondence with Werleman has been favorable and professional. I do not wish to degrade from him on a personal level but as an author I feel I cannot ignore this issue.
I’m just very disappointed with him as a fellow Dangerous Little Books author and I’m upset with the recent turn of events.