Perhaps you’ve finished writing your book, and you’re considering selling or publishing it. However, before doing so, you’ll need to protect your work from being copied by others. And that being said, one of the best ways to do this is by getting it copyrighted.
Copyrighting a literary work you’re about to sell could be an ideal way to secure your intellectual property. If you’re wondering how you could go about it, this article provides a guide, from presenting your book to copyright registration.
What Is Copyright?
Copyright is the legal protection of a work, which means it can’t be used without the creator’s permission. Essentially, it protects original works of authorship from unauthorized copying, reproduction, selling, and distribution. Intellectual property covered by this may include books, novels, poems, articles, artworks, photographs, posters, videos, movies, etc.
Copyright gives the owners and creators the exclusive right over their work and any derivative works based on it. This means that they’ll have control over how their work will be used, displayed, and sold. It can also help prevent other parties from plagiarizing your work by requiring them to get permission before they use anything in it. In addition, creators may file a lawsuit against anyone who infringes the copyright and uses their work without consent.
Why Do You Need To Copyright A Book You Want To Sell?
As established above, copyrighting your work can give you legal protection from those who wish to steal and use it without proper authorization. And so, if you’re planning on selling and publishing your work, copyrighting your masterpiece can go a long way.
For one, it can be proof that you own the work legally. And perhaps the most important reason is that it protects your intellectual property from being claimed as someone else’s work. For instance, if you are writing a book about how to run a successful business, it’s crucial to protect yourself against someone else publishing the same work under their name or claim as their own.
Without copyright, someone else could steal your material and use it without paying you for it. Copyright protects your published and unpublished works so that other people can’t use them without your permission.
How To Copyright A Book You Want To Sell?
If you plan to copyright the book you want to sell or publish, here are a few steps on how to go about it.
- Finalize Your Book
Finalizing your work is the first step to copyrighting your book. You’ve probably written your book already, but it is best to ensure it is finalized and ready for sale. One of the common mistakes most writers make is going too far into their writing and forgetting about formatting, editing, or having a well-rounded idea of what their book will be.
A book can be published in many forms. These could be through an eBook, audio version, hardcover, or paperback books. Each of these formats has specific requirements for formatting for the best results when reading on different devices or platforms.
For example, some online book publishers may require standard formats such as fonts and margins for the text not to get cut off at the edges by larger font sizes used in older versions of phones or tablets. Ebooks may also need special characters called metadata, which tell readers the details of the book.
- Select The Proper Type Of Work To Register
Once you have finalized your work, you can now proceed and access the copyright office website. There are various types of work options on the page, such as Literary Works, Performing Arts, Visual Arts, Sound Recording, Motion Picture/Audiovisual Work, etc. As you are aiming to register your book, click and select the Literary Works option.
- Sign Up For An Account At The Copyright Office
You will need a username and password to sign up for an account before you can register. You will have to input your personal details to complete the registration process. You can also opt for a hard copy application by downloading all the necessary forms from the copyright office website, filling them out, and sending them by mail.
Alternatively, you could log in directly, suppose you already have an account. After logging in and accessing the portal, you can click on the Register a Work option, which is located on the left side panel. Choose the Standard Application and begin filling in the essential information and details about the material you want to be copyrighted.
- Pay The Registration Fee
Now that you have completed your copyright application, it’s time to pay the registration fee. You can pay the copyright application fee by debit card or credit card, through a deposit account, by visiting your country’s copyright office personally, by calling them, or by paying online.
After the payment has been confirmed, you will need to mail the copyright office a copy of the work you want to be copyrighted.
- Wait For The Registration To Process
After you have submitted your work for copyright, there’s nothing left to do but wait. That said, remember that the process might take a long time. Some work may be processed within a few months, while some could take longer.
Generally, if you have applied online, you will receive an email confirmation, acknowledging the receipt of your application. On the other hand, there will be no confirmation if it was applied through the mail.
Furthermore, there may be some instances where the office will send back an application because something was missing or incorrect. If this happens, you may revisit the steps and ensure everything’s in order before re-submitting it for approval.
If you want to sell your book, it’s essential to copyright it. It can ensure that no one can infringe the copyright of your work without your permission, which is crucial if you want to protect your craft and make money from your labor. Hopefully, with the insights provided in this article, you can copyright the book you want to sell to ensure it’s legally protected.