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Archive for the ‘Publishing’ Category

Wondering Whether A Work is Public Domain?

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Wonder no more!  The helpful folks at Sunstein Kann Murphy & Timbers LLP have created a flowchart that helps you determine whether a work is in the public domain.

Check it out here.

What’s nice about the public domain?  You can freely create derivative works without fear of infringing on someone’s copyright.   That’s right, if you want to use the ghosts of Romeo and Juliet, you do not need to seek out permission from his descendants.

That’s part of the reason that so many movies remake classic stories, or why the author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies has not been sued by Jane Austen’s descendants.

What is your favorite story in the public domain?  Have you written a derivative work based on a classic?  What do you think?

Thinking of Writing a Novel?

Monday, December 20th, 2010

I saw this video via Pub Rants (thanks, Agent Kristin, even though we haven’t met!).  It highlights many of the mistakes that first-time novelists make before they even start penning the first word.

While it might seem somewhat harsh for the new writer (and funny for those more experienced), there is a lot of truth in this clip.  If you’re considering writing a novel, or know someone who is making some of these mistakes, please ask them to watch this.

It’s for their own good.

The good news is that you can learn from these mistakes, and eventually find yourself in a better position to actually get published.

What other mistakes do you see new writers make?  What advice might you give to the new writer in the video?

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