Confused About Imprints

I'm thinking about eventually self-publishing a series of books I have been working on for years. The problem is that I read conflicting advice about fictitious imprint names. I know it is optional anyway though, but if I just want to add my own imprint name and logo to the spine and copyright page do I still have to register a DBA?

What if I just want to use the ISBN provided by lulu.com? Could I still apply an imprint to the physical book? I live in the US.

Thanks for any possible assistance.

Comments

  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    I'm thinking about eventually self-publishing a series of books I have been working on for years. The problem is that I read conflicting advice about fictitious imprint names.

     

    Fictitious? In what way?

     

    I know it is optional anyway though,

     

    Well it is, but self-publishers have no real need to do it in the way it is done Many huge publishing houses are the parent company of many other publishing houses and use them for many reasons, just to publish paperback versions for example, or books for children, or to publish in other countries.

     

    but if I just want to add my own imprint name and logo to the spine and copyright page do I still have to register a DBA?

     

    Your book it not really an imprint unless you also publish other books in other publishing names, or even the same book. What's the DBA?

    What if I just want to use the ISBN provided by lulu.com? Could I still apply an imprint to the physical book? I live in the US.

     

    I think you misunderstand what an Imprint is and you have no need to worry about the use of such as such. All an Imprint really is is the name of the publisher, and that's you.

     

    http://authormaps.com/need-a-publishers-imprint/

     

     

  • In my understanding, imprints are used by traditional publishers to group books into particular genres. For example, SAGA Press is Simon & Schuster's Science Fiction & Fantasy imprint. I am unsure how you would benefit from using an imprint.

     

    Perhaps you mean publisher name instead.

  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    Yes, it's a strange term, but I have no doubt there's a reason for using that term from the deep past.

  • ISBN registration requires that you state an "imprint" name. Certain other selfpublishing resources require that the ISBN be registered at Bowkers with the same imprint used in the publication. Presumably this is a checksum to prove that the author owns the ISBN.

    At Lulu it does not seem to be an issue. For most purposes, publisher and imprint mean the same thing to us as selfpublishers.
  • Thane37Thane37 Reader
    I just wanted to know if you could add a publishing logo and name of your own to the spine of the book and the copyright page of the book. If so, can this legally be done if I use a Lulu ISBN and would I have to file the name with the government as a business? I heard using a custom self publisher name when self publishing makes it look more professional.

    I am using a pen name for the book.

    Thanks.
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius

    I just wanted to know if you could add a publishing logo and name of your own to the spine of the book

     

    If there's the space you can, but you would have to use the One-Piece Cover Wizard and upload one image for front, spine and back.

     

    and the copyright page of the book.

     

    If you want to.

     

    If so, can this legally be done if I use a Lulu ISBN

     

    Yes.

     

    and would I have to file the name with the government as a business?

     

    That's up to you but a logo is not the same thing. That would have to be a registered design.

     

    I heard using a custom self publisher name when self publishing makes it look more professional.

     

    Possibly, but I doubt it, unless you are thinking of doing all the distributing yourself, then you would possibly need your own ISBN as well.  I doubt such details matter if no one has heard of you as a publisher.

     

    Who published the last book you read?

    I am using a pen name for the book.

     

    That makes no difference.

     

     

    But I think you are just over-complicating the whole process.

  • Thane37Thane37 Reader
    Well, I'm new to publishing as I never published a book before.
  • Skoob_ymSkoob_ym Teacher

    Thane37 wrote:
    I just wanted to know if you could add a publishing logo and name of your own to the spine of the book and the copyright page of the book. If so, can this legally be done if I use a Lulu ISBN and would I have to file the name with the government as a business? I heard using a custom self publisher name when self publishing makes it look more professional.

    I am using a pen name for the book.

    Thanks.

    The short answer is, yes, you can use a fictitious publisher/imprint name.

     

    If you use a Lulu ISBN, anyone looking it up in Ingrams or other distributers will see Lulu as the publisher, and will come here to buy it. It doesn't matter what's written on the Copyright page in the publisher block.

     

    If you buy your own ISBNs, then you have to match the imprint name that you use with the ISBN purchase to the imprint name you put on the form in  the publishing wizard. But you can still put something different on the copyright page if you want.

     

    As for registering it with the government: The publishing wizard does not check to see what your business entity is when it runs. It assumes you're an individual / sole proprietor and deducts from royalties accordingly. If you want to run a Fictitious Business Name Statement and get a business license in your town, that might be a good idea, but that's between you and your town.

     

    This is my observation: I don't speak for Lulu.

     

    And I'm not a lawyer, and this isn't advice.

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