What a Respected Philosopher has to Say re: the Value of Editors

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  • Copyrights, at least in the US, are not renewable forever. 
    https://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ15a.pdf
    This is the reason that Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories and much of the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs is now in the public domain, in spite of the existence of their estates.

    And I certainly do agree with you about the durability of many authors!
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  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    It's a very complex law based on what year a book was published (because they keep amending the laws! I think they last messed with it in 1992.) Published before a certain year they cannot be renewed even if they still have time to run, but even so I think copyrights can only be renewed for a further term once.

    It's interesting, perhaps, that Mr Pratchett died 'young' at 67, but most of his books also have his wife on the copyright, who is not a writer and is still very much alive.

  • I'm not sure why you would mention that Pratchett's wife is not a writer. Anyone can own or be part owner of a copyright. In fact, they can be sold, traded, shared or inherited just like any other kind of property.
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  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    I'm not sure why you would mention that Pratchett's wife is not a writer. Anyone can own or be part owner of a copyright. In fact, they can be sold, traded, shared or inherited just like any other kind of property.

    Why do I often have to explain the obvious? :( In the context of what I said, she is named, not as a writer, but as a beneficiary of royalties in the event of his death, which came to pass. 

  • "...most of his books also have his wife on the copyright, who is not a writer..."

    Who said anything anywhere about royalties?

    "...she is named, not as a writer, but as a beneficiary of royalties in the event of his death..."

    Named where? That sounds like you are talking now about Pratchett's will. The disposition of royalties has nothing to do with copyright. The copyright could be belong to anyone and the royalties---if Pratchett wished---could still go to his wife. It's exactly as if someone had title to an automobile. They could leave the car to their wife, who would get the title, but stipulate that no one but their son could drive it. The one has nothing to do with the other.


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  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    "...most of his books also have his wife on the copyright, who is not a writer..."

    Who said anything anywhere about royalties?

    Ermm, the copyright owner/s get the royalties. Are you being difficult just for the sake of it? You know full well the reasons for a copyright.

    "...she is named, not as a writer, but as a beneficiary of royalties in the event of his death..."

    Named where?

    Now I know you are just being awkward. She's not a writer, but the copyright in his books is joint (as I know you know I told you ...) so that she gets the royalties on his death. He knew for many years he had a terminal illness. There was a documentary about how he and his family and staff were coping with it. Many documentaries about his life over the years in fact. Have you seen any?

    That sounds like you are talking now about Pratchett's will.

    You know full well what I said.

     The disposition of royalties has nothing to do with copyright. The copyright could be belong to anyone and the royalties---if Pratchett wished---could still go to his wife.

    Really? and how does that work? So you can sell the copyright but still be names as the owner of it? I doubt that. They go to him (Hence why he left $40m in his will) and he included her name in the copyrights of his book to make it simple.

    It's exactly as if someone had title to an automobile. They could leave the car to their wife, who would get the title, but stipulate that no one but their son could drive it. The one has nothing to do with the other.

    That must be somewhat different in the USA then. Even named possession of a car in the UK is not proof of ownership. It has to be notified to the DVLA by the previous owner and the new owner, separately, which is far more difficult if one is dead.

    Anyway, I don't know why you are arguing, you know what I meant.

  • Ron MillerRon Miller Professor
    edited October 2018

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  • LarikaLarika Bibliophile
    Gosh when I read comments like the above I wonder what I've come back to. I like Paul's comment "Alright folks, let's keep it civil." My writing group had problems until one person was asked to leave, now we are all polite and considerate of other members. We have a lovely atmosphere. Yes we discuss our writings and have general discussions, but we "keep it civil". By the way Ron has a profile in Wikipedia that really impressed my husband and Kevin made us all aware of it!!! However I have noticed that numbers have dwindled in the forums. Such a pity. Back then when i was a regular in the forums, I was tempted to give up writing but Kevin persuaded me not to and I took his advice. Now Ron said, "it's a shame" that I've given up art. He tells me that he does both. Maybe I'll go back to painting and illustrating and continue writing.
  • There have many, many author-artists...either people who were primarily artists who wrote and illustrated their own books or authors who were mainly writers who illustrated their stories or poems. This goes all the way back to William Blake and beyond.

    Closer to home, many of my artist/illustrator friends have written books, sometimes these are just text and sometimes the books are illustrated. My friend Steve Hickman wrote a successful fantasy novel for which he did his own cover and my late friend Mark Rogers is probably best known for his Samurai Cat series of books. I have to admit that many of the books I have done---especially my YA nonfiction books---were in a large part originally proposed as excuses to do the illustrations. (Which is always cool, since this means I get total control over everything.) The half dozen novels I have done have all had cover art by me---but of course this means that I have no one else to blame for how they turn out!

    But, anyway, the whole point is that you don't have to chose one over the other, writing vs art.
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  • LarikaLarika Bibliophile
    Thanks Ron, I do the occasional illustration and Birthday card. I also make all the covers of my book. It's mainly painting I've given up. I used to belong to an art group and we had regular art sales. However I've left that group (the conversation got so catty) and now I have nowhere to sell my art work. I continued on my own for a while but paintings accumulate---- what to do with them!!! Writing takes up less space. lol.
  • Well, you know, you can kill two birds with one stone as it were. Doing a painting for a book cover doesn't preclude selling the painting later. Indeed, the fact of it being published makes it even more interesting to most people. I have sold the original of almost every cover painting I have ever done. Besides, doing your own cover art is great motivation to create something even if you never have any intention of selling it.  And it's certainly a great way to show off your work, if nothing else!


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  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    Gosh when I read comments like the above I wonder what I've come back to.

    I often wonder why I keep returning, but I usually like Ron, unlike some others he is normally willing to discuss things. But it can be hard here when one does not simply agree with what everyone says!

     I like Paul's comment "Alright folks, let's keep it civil."

    Indeed, that should be enough nowadays because at one time there were some truly nasty trolls using the forums, who actually were, apparently, self-publishers.

     My writing group had problems until one person was asked to leave, now we are all polite and considerate of other members.

    Oh, people have been banned from the forum, but there's nothing to stop them at times returning on another account. There's a current name that comments in such a familiar 'tone.'

    We have a lovely atmosphere. Yes we discuss our writings and have general discussions, but we "keep it civil".

    I think while I have been at Lulu there's been at least three incarnations of the forum. One was so untidy and buggy, 100s stopped using it and never came back! Also, in the early days, it was almost impossible to find anything via the Knowledge base, and there were no videos. There was also no Help links on the Create page, or within the Wizards. I would expect that with the addition of those, people don't need to use the forum as much, if at all. There were also no links on everything to Lulu's Services. I don't think people have been 'driven' away because when 100s used the forums each day, it was a far worse place (%agewise trolls I expect!)  but 100s still used the forums each day!

    By the way Ron has a profile in Wikipedia that really impressed my husband and Kevin made us all aware of it!!! However I have noticed that numbers have dwindled in the forums. Such a pity. Back then when i was a regular in the forums, I was tempted to give up writing but Kevin persuaded me not to and I took his advice. Now Ron said, "it's a shame" that I've given up art. He tells me that he does both. Maybe I'll go back to painting and illustrating and continue writing.

    Yes, I do both also, and not only my own covers. Perhaps you recall when I had my own website? But I now use this >>

    https://www.zazzle.co.uk/kevinlomasstuff/products

    (But to see many of mine you have to be over 18 and logged in :) )

    But I too had a big break from it for simple pleasure, and from writing fiction. Other things become more grabbing of time.

  • Larika said:
    Gosh when I read comments like the above I wonder what I've come back to. I like Paul's comment "Alright folks, let's keep it civil." My writing group had problems until one person was asked to leave, now we are all polite and considerate of other members. We have a lovely atmosphere. Yes we discuss our writings and have general discussions, but we "keep it civil". By the way Ron has a profile in Wikipedia that really impressed my husband and Kevin made us all aware of it!!! However I have noticed that numbers have dwindled in the forums. Such a pity. Back then when i was a regular in the forums, I was tempted to give up writing but Kevin persuaded me not to and I took his advice. Now Ron said, "it's a shame" that I've given up art. He tells me that he does both. Maybe I'll go back to painting and illustrating and continue writing.
    Vigorous discussion can actually be healthy for a forum, imho, within bounds.

    Moderation -- the occasional "Let's keep it civil" is a mark of vigorous debate, without which we have nothing but sycophany. In general, if you're around the forums as they stand today, I think you'll find it a very civil place overall, and at the same time I think that you'll find open and honest discussion.
  • LarikaLarika Bibliophile
    edited October 2018
     Ron, I make my covers online. My son bought me a pen and I use it to paint in programmes such as "Paint Shop Pro". Kevin where is Maggie? She was a calming influence here when members didn't "keep it civil". I like vigorous debate Skoob, but it is unnecessary for people to hurl personal insults at members. However I read the entire debate on the "value of editors" and found it very interesting (apart from the digs at one another)
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    I have no idea were Maggie went, but I think she is still on Facebook. She was good with ePubs.

    I just looked, I cannot find her there now!

  • I think Maggie is "taking a break" from the forum. I suspect that she is working on some new projects.
  • LarikaLarika Bibliophile
    Thanks Skoob. I remember Maggie very kindly complimenting me on a poem I'd written. I was pleased, because I'm not good at writing poetry, although I love to read it.
  • Maggie is a kind and wonderful woman.
  • LarikaLarika Bibliophile
    edited October 2018
    I am friends with her on Facebook, but like you said I think she's taking a break because she hasn't been there for a while.
  • A surprising number of people suddenly stop using Facebook. If you wander around the place you will notice that many accounts have not even been used since Facebook opened! One of my sons, who is 32, has not used it for ages. He says it's just for young people! (to me he is young!) He uses all other social things though.
  • LarikaLarika Bibliophile
    Well as you saw on Facebook Kevin I am always asking people "To help Elizabeth Keimach." It's for all those petitions I ask people to sign!! So it's not just for the young. It has its uses for us older people too.
  • Indeed you are. You are like a one woman UN.
  • LarikaLarika Bibliophile
    Too old to lobby Parliament anymore though! I would have been arrested in Saudi.
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