Sunday, June 17, 2007

Hang Ups

I couldn't have been born normal. Oh nooo. I had to be a writer. But I couldn't write nice romance novels. I had to be a freakazoid who talks to ghosts! And now my stupid novel is held up in the production. This is the cryptic letter I got from the publishing company.

Hi Cheesemeister,

While in the pre-publication phase of your manuscript, we noticed some potential copyright issues. Your manuscript may contain images and/or passages of text that are problematic. Here are our guidelines:

If your manuscript contains any images and/or text that you did not personally create as original material, you may not have the legal right to include such material in your manuscript. Such material includes lyrics to songs; excerpts from published stories, books, or poems; published and commercially produced images; images containing the likeness of someone you do not know personally (living or dead); and photographs taken by someone other than you or an immediate family member.

Outskirts Press will only publish images and/or text created or produced by someone other than the author if the material was first published before 1923 or if you have obtained written authorization from the legal owner of such material to publish it as part of your manuscript. Please be aware that Outskirts Press will not accept “Fair Use” claims nor will we accept bibliographic information acknowledging the source of the copyrighted material in lieu of written authorization.

If your manuscript contains images and/or text created or produced by someone else and you have not already obtained this written authorization, you must do so before we can publish your manuscript. Written authorization from the copyright holder is sufficient. I have attached a copy of the Authorization to Publish form for your convenience. Please fax all signed documentation to Outskirts Press at 888.672.6657.

If you need assistance securing permissions or verifying your rights to use, we can provide you with the name and contact information of a specialist who works and charges independently of Outskirts Press.

If you are unable to secure appropriate authorization or decide it is not worth the bother or expense, please remove the material from your manuscript so we can proceed with publication.

Outskirts Press has adopted this policy for the protection of all writers and creators of original images and photographs, and once you are published, we will protect your work in the same diligent manner.

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns about this issue, and I’ll be happy to help resolve them. I will wait to hear from you regarding this matter before proceeding.


Eager Beaver

Aw, for fuck's sake!

I think I know which item might be the problem. I hope it isn't more than just this one thing. But could they have been SPECIFIC? You know, told me which thing was the problem instead of leaving me to guess? Oh noooo! That might be helpful!

I quote material from H.P. Lovecraft, Edgar Allan Poe, William Drummond and Clark Ashton Smith in the book. I obtained permission from Arkham House to use the Lovecraft material. William Drummond was a poet from the 1500's. Edgar Allan Poe died in 1849. The Clark Ashton Smith story I quoted was published in 1935 and I credited him as the source, mentioning the story I got it from and where it was published. This magazine no longer exists. I thought enough time might have passed that I could use the material simply by crediting the source but it has to be before 1923. Shee-at! So I wrote to Chaosium to ask them where they got permission from to use Clark Ashton Smith's character Quachil Uttaus in their RPG books. Smith died in 1961, and I'm hoping that there won't be problems with the occasional blurbs (usually couched in double entendre) in some of my other text, using Mayhem lyrics because my publisher isn't going to buy that the guy who wrote the lyrics also wrote the sentences--through me, seeing as he died in 1991! But whatever the case may be, could my publisher perhaps have SPECIFIED what the problem was rather than leaving me to shoot in the dark? Criminy!

Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuckity fuck!

Sometimes I really wish I was normal!

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