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"The Draco Trilogy:" A New Trope Emerging out of Plagiarism

Perhaps the most hidden secret of New York Times Bestselling author, Cassandra Clare is that her most popular series The Mortal Instruments (2007) has been re-visioned from her fanfiction about Harry Potter called The Draco Trilogy (2000).

The Draco Dormiens (the first book of the trilogy) fanfiction has since been removed from any “official,” websites because of plagiarism to J.K. Rowling’s plot, world-building and characters. However, the story can be accessed with a simple Google search, “The Draco Trilogy: Draco Dormiens full story EDUP or PDF.” Clare had gone through a massive scandal due to this fanfiction because she copied exact quotes from several different authors/movies and their famous stories (i.e., Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Neil Gaiman, and others) without any credit.

Originally, Cassandra Clare’s last name was spelt Claire; however, due to this plagiarist scandal, and the publication of her hit series, The Mortal Instruments (2007), she has since dropped the “I,” to conceal her past in a Google search.

Considering all these mistakes done by the author, and her desperate need to no longer be associated with her fanfiction (enough to slightly change her last name), there is no possible way this particular fanfiction of hers could be printed or profited off – not without her going through a major lawsuit with several other authors and series/movie scripted writers.

About the first book:

Draco Dormiens (2000) takes place after the events of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter: The Goblet of Fire (2000). Starting with an incident between Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy practicing with Polyjuice Potion (which changes the consumer into whoever’s piece of hair is mixed into the potion). Harry transforms into Draco and vice versa. Unfortunately for both Harry and Draco, they end up stuck with each other’s appearance. After trying to tell Professor Snap that he was not Harry, and failing to convince him, Draco decided to be Harry.

Clare adding a love triangle in the mix of her Harry Potter fanfiction between Draco, Hermione and Harry. The Freaky Friday(2003) aspect of the “body swap” and the love triangle between these beloved characters had ruled the plot of this particular fanfiction by Clare.

Clare Famous for Plagiarism:

As mentioned above, Cassandra Clare (formally known as Judith Rumelt) has ironically made a name for herself by direct plagiarism. As mentioned in Spinosa’s review (2017) of Illegal Literature by David S. Roh’s, which defends the idea of creating a name for oneself through plagiarist content. Though, it did not prove in Cassandra Clare’s favour. Besides having to write under a pen name, she had to change her original pen name again because of the backlash with The Draco Trilogy and was kicked off of FanFiction.net for her lack of crediting or directly citing the quotes she had used.

Not only that, but Clare had not only plagiarised other pieces of art through fanfiction but in a way, she copied and pasted Draco Dormiens and created her New York Times Bestseller, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (2007). She copied quotes from her fanfiction - one being where she describes Draco Malfoy. She makes her “original” character Jace Wayland a direct copy of her version of Draco in The Draco Trilogy (even quoting herself word from word).

Though, even under all those circumstances, and a lot of backlash for it, she has still managed to be a New York Times Bestseller author. She also has a huge fanbase, where even though her “Shadowhunter’s,” was originally a direct copy of “darkhunter.” Her fanbase still praises her for the alternate universe (AU) she has created. As well, The Draco Trilogy has specifically become the fandom known as the “Draco in Leather Pants” trope (Guruswamy 2017). The whole idea of it comes from the idea of making a villainous character into a romantic desire, or a victim.

Fanfiction Progression & Draco Domiens:

Throughout the years, fanfiction has turned into an internet epidemic. Fanfiction had existed prior to the internet’s introduction, but has become a lot more in the last few years and has delivered some controversies.

Starting with Tumblr post of headcanon short blurbs (fan’s own idea of a character/story); soon, other websites were introduced, specifically for the reason of making fanfiction’s for other fans to enjoy. The most popular right now (in 2021) is Wattpad (2006), and Archive of Our Own (AO3) (2009), etc.

Even though Clare had developed Draco Dormiens, and the rest of the trilogy as a fun story and helping other fans enjoy more of their beloved character Draco Malfoy in contrast to Harry Potter; she had not, in a way, “done it properly.” Fanfiction is quite literally a way to copy an entire story plot but, that being said, it is meant to be a way to write your own within these ideas and not stealing from other stories/writers without any credit. Though she had credited J.K. Rowling for the world of Hogwarts and the characters of the Harry Potter series, she had not acknowledged the use of direct quotes from other works and tv shows/movies.

That all being said, there is no way this story could be accessed anywhere but using an online source. Clare has been blacklisted from FanFiction.net for her direct, and blatant copying and direct quotes from popular series in the use of Draco Dormiens and the rest of The Draco Trilogy. Though the story has been loved by her fanbase back in 2000 when the fanfiction was originally written and made up a brand-new trope. Not only has Fanfiction.net banned her, but public sites have also banned her story for its plagiarism. Clare herself has tried to distant her relationship to the series by changing her name, not once, but twice.

The original online publication of The Draco Trilogy has been removed from Fanfiction.net; however, as the saying goes, “what ends up on the internet, stays forever.” That appears to be the mistake with Clare, even as she tried to distance herself from the plagiarised story, the fandom never forgets. In 2006 she had talked about it, but not directly referencing her ban from Fanfiction.net.

Thus, there is only one way to access Draco Domiens, and the rest of the series, which is a simple Google search, because several of her fanbases have found a way to create PDFs and EDUPs of her story.

Draco Dormiens is a fun story that combines the beloved Harry Potter characters but changes up the love-story between Ron and Hermonie, to a love triangle between Harry, Hermonie, and Draco. Cassandra Clare had changed this story to her own writing style and matured the characters slightly, but that did not stop the backlash she received.

This entry was written as a part of Dani Spinosa's ENGL 4309H: Digital Adventures in Literature at Trent University, Winter 2021.

Work Cited

Clare, Cassandra. The Draco Trilogy: Draco Dormiens. 2000. EPUB.
Guruswamy, Shanthi. “Cassandra Clare and the Not-So-Secret Plagiarizing.” The Bottom Line,
2016, https://thebottomline.as.ucsb.edu/2016/02/cassandra-clare-and-the-chambe.... Accessed 18 Feb. 2021.
Spinosa, Dani. “Illegal Literature: Toward a Disruptive Creativity.” Electronic Book Review,
2017, https://electronicbookreview.com/essay/illegal-literature-toward-a-disru.... Accessed 18 Feb. 2021.
Weiss, R. Sabrina. “Everything you need to know about Cassandra Clare’s Controversies.”
Refinery29, 2016, https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2016/01/100329/cassandra-clare-plagiari.... Accessed 18 Feb. 2021.
“Archive of Our Own.” Wikipedia, 2021, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archive_of_Our_Own.
Accessed 18 Feb. 2021.
“Wattpad.” Wikipedia, 2021, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wattpad. Accessed 18 Feb. 2021.

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