I received the online proof for my book today so I thought now would be a good time to get my copyright. I strongly urge all the authors I work with to copyright their work. Technically, when you put an original thought down on paper, you own it. But what if someone steals something you did? You have nothing to back it up – which is exactly why it needs to be documented beforehand. The copyright document will hold up in court if it ever came to that.
It is a good idea to get a new copyright every time you make significant changes or maybe a second edition. You can get a copyright at anytime and it is fairly easy so there really is no excuse. Of course, if you change a typo or two – it may not be necessary then. It costs $35 every time you do it online. It is more costly and very slow to mail it in.
I went to http://www.copyright.gov and did it in about 30 min. Granted, I tend to graze pages quickly and only read a portion of what I am supposed too. I guess that is what comes from living in such a fast paced society these days. With that said, you will notice that it is a govt website because it is boring, not very advanced and not pretty at all. I went through a series of pages where I seemed to enter the same thing over and over. Maybe I’m an internet snob but I like auto fills and big ‘click here’ buttons. They did have a nice (very long) pdf tutorial on every step which I have available here: eco-tutorial
Once I went through the process of all the info, I had to pay the $35. Once I paid the money, they had me upload the files. I uploaded and expected a ‘yay congrats on uploading the files’ but nothing. So I waited and then went and watched an episode of Mad Men and then came back and had an email that they had uploaded. The email just said thank you for submitting – w/o any timeline as to when I will receive the certificate in the mail. I will be sure and keep everyone posted on that. If you have not already copyrighted your work – go and do it now. I will wait…….….no, j/k – but seriously go and do it asap!
Now, for a Library of Congress #. Can someone tell me why I would want to do this? It seems very old school to get an LOC. Maybe it is just for the recognition or status perhaps? Any help would be awesome. I will be looking into this as well but interested to know what you all think.
Check out my previous blogs on prelaunch marketing and cover/manuscript setup. If you are not following, just click the follow button on the right hand side to be emailed when new blogs are posted. My next ones will be a biggie on social media, yikes.
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…and in case I don’t see ya, good afternoon, good evening, and good night.