If you have just completed writing and editing your book or manuscript and are wondering what the next step is, you have come to the right place. After writing your book, you can either find a trusted and respected publishing company to publish your work or self-publish.
Apart from publishing, you might also have questions regarding whether or not you should copyright your work or not. If you have decided to go with a publisher, you might be worried if it is safe or not. Read on to learn why copyrighting your book isn’t necessary.
Is it necessary to copyright your work before publishing it?
No. According to the law, whatever you type or write is legally your content. You can copyright your work before sending it to a publisher, but here are a few reasons why that might not be such a good idea.
1. The publisher you choose may not be able to suggest any editorial changes by Christian book editors to your book if it’s a Christian novel without you updating or removing your copyright. This will make the procedure expensive, and the majority of the publishers will not commit to working with you under such conditions.
2. If you send your work to a reputable and trusted publisher, it will be less tiring for you to make them register the copyright under your name, as they are obliged to do so once you start working with them and get into an agreement.
3. Publishers do not want to steal your work and earn a bad reputation. That won’t help grow their business. Your work and book might be great, but would a trusted publishing company go through all the risks and hassle and stain their reputation?
4. If in case your publisher decides to take advantage of your work, you will have enough evidence to provide so in front of the judge.
5. We all know that the penalty for copyright infringement is way too high. If the publisher gets caught stealing your work, they may be liable to more than a $21000 fine. This penalty amount is higher than a publisher would earn in royalties.
6. Author royalties make up a very small portion of the publication costs. Author royalties are usually between 5% and 15%, even for the most famous and best-selling authors. Also, these royalties are usually on the wholesale price of a book instead of the retail price.
This means that if your paperback original retails for $7, the wholesale cost will be around $3.00, of which the author will only receive 13 cents. Thus no publishing company is going to save a large amount of money by cheating on the author and stealing their work. The author’s share is too insignificant and small.
7. Publishers do not make money from printing books but rather from the authors. Publishing companies usually work with authors who can produce multiple good books, authors who can bring many readers and followers.
The more interesting and good your book is, the more a publishing company
8. Publishing companies do not want to steal bad books either. Many authors fear that if their book is nearly good enough to be a massive hit, the publishing company might steal their book and give it to another author who might edit it and polish it. But yet again, publishers have way more to lose than win in case they steal your work. The drawbacks of stealing your work are very much for the publishers who would never risk it all for just a book.
9. Theft is only successful if the stolen object can be quickly disposed of without anyone knowing. Books, on the other hand, are only of benefit if they are marketed and given attention.
10. Publishing companies have to be very careful, or they might get sued by their clients. They will be in hot waters if the client decides to sue them as they might lose everything they possess and their source of income.
What precautions should you take to protect your work apart from copyrighting?
So now you know that you do not need to copyright your work before sending it to a publisher. But here are a few steps you can take to ensure you can keep your work safe.
· Do not submit your work in soft copies. Only submit hard copies of your work to publishers.
· Make sure you have your original content saved and kept in a safe place on the USB, hard disk, and computer. If it is not a digital copy, you should include the date and timestamp as it can help you prove ownership if needed.
· Send your work in sealed envelopes or through a trusted post service. Also, send yourself a copy of your work through the same process.
· If an envelope has a postmark, the publisher can not prove ownership if you send your work through the mail. In case they get rid of the envelope, you can show your copy and the digital copies you have to prove you had the content long before anyone else did. These are a few ways you can make sure your work does not get stolen from you.
Every author loves their manuscripts with all their heart. So much so that they find it difficult to understand why agents, publishers, and editors do not want to steal your work. Authors usually think that how a publisher can refuse their amazing book, their gem.
Some might turn to believe in theft as a way to compensate for the pain caused by the rejection, but it is not worth it. For every publisher, it is their business to work with authors who have great potential so that they can write books for many years.
Stealing their work would only mean the loss of a valuable client, years of income, chances of a heavy fine, stained reputation, and the business getting sued.
So ask yourself this would any publisher really go through all that trouble? Thus it is not necessary for you to copyright your book before handing it over to your publisher. And you can rest assured that the publisher will not copy or steal your book.
Barry Lachey is a Professional Editor at Zobuz. Previously He has also worked for Moxly Sports and Network Resources “Joe Joe.” he is a graduate of the Kings College at the University of Thames Valley London. You can reach Barry via email or by phone.