The act of appropriating the literary composition of another author, or excerpts, ideas, or passages there from, and passing the material off as one's own creation.
Just to be clear I got this definition from a free legal dictionary online. You can find it here. http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Plagerism
Plagiarism. It’s a real thing people. In this day and age, authors have to be really careful about this issue. It’s not only Nora Roberts who’s work gets stolen. Entire passages of someone’s work appeared on a blog just recently as someone else’s work.
Amazon has just approved Fan Fiction for their shelves, which opens up all kinds of problems. Personally, I don't know how I feel about people taking characters that don't belong to them and writing their own stories with them. But, I get that fan fiction is a great way to express yourself and to let your imagination go if that's your cup of tea. I digress.
It basically comes down to this. I am not an opera signer. I cannot carry a tune. When I was fifteen I went to the MET and I was blown away. This does not mean I am meant to be an opera singer.
I don't care if you *want* to be a writer. If you cannot come up with your own ideas, do not go and take someone else's and try to pass it off as your own. Go find what you are meant to be doing and do that. Maybe its not to tell stories, maybe its to review them, or to edit them, or to teach science. Do not cut and paste someone's words and try to claim them as your own. If you can't adequately write your own and be published that way...you are not a writer. Plagiarism does not make you one.
Authors, please be careful with your work. You might be surprised how easy it would be for someone to take your stuff and use it for their own financial gain. Let's watch out for each other.