I was recently conversing with Pamela Jane, an author of several children’s books and read an article she wrote about a personal experience with a major publisher. She is an author with books out through a few little companies like Random House, HarperCollins, and others.
Her article, titled You Think it Can’t Happen? How My Two Picture Books Were Stolen by a Major Publisher, was published in Huffpo. It’s worth a read, if nothing else as a cautionary tale. It might also demonstrate the protections that a literary agent provide to authors and also serves as a reminder to document everything.
Writing is more than communication and entertainment. It’s also a business and it’s important to remember that individuals can be easily crushed beneath the wheels of industry. Don’t be so afraid that you never take your ideas out for a test-drive… but don’t be so foolish that you fail to wear your seat-belt, either.