Copyright laws concerning a writer’s work seem to be a popular question among new writers. For instance, you just finished that novel that you’ve been working on, and now you need some feedback. You go to a writers group seeking beta readers to review your manuscript, but then you start to worry, “What is to stop them from stealing or plagiarizing my hard work?” This was a major concern for me as well when I first started sending out my manuscript to beta readers. So should you get you work copyrighted? Well, this is what I found out.

“Copyright” literally means the right to copy.  Copyright is a form of protection given to the authors of “original works of authorship,” including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other works.  This protection is available “automatically” to both published and unpublished works. – See more at: http://copyright.uslegal.com/enumerated-categories-of-copyrightable-works/copyright-for-literary-work/#sthash.in4YAdAF.dpuf

Any “original work of authorship” is subject to copyright protection the moment that it is “fixed in any tangible medium of expression.”   For example, a love letter is instantaneously subject to copyright protection  as it flows out beneath your fountain pen. Similarly, blogs readily qualify as copyrightable literary works (as long as they contain some of your own expression and not merely expression copied from others). On the other hand, a song that you spontaneously sing is not protected by statutory copyright until it is “fixed,” e.g., until you write it down or record it. (Examples of the many varieties of “works of authorship” are listed in Section 102 of the Copyright Act.)

Hope that helps, but here is a link if wish to get your work copyrighted, and you are trying to get published. I found it had a lot of good information.  http://www.pw.org/content/copyright

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