The Know Your Rights Blog

  • MJ

Fall is officially here, we will soon see the first leaves begin to turn, and publishers' thoughts turn to the big holiday season push.

But here at GPC, we're thinking about 2020 already!


Our licensees are looking to fill their new seasons, and those seasons are spring and fall 2020.

Although it might *feel* premature to be thinking about licensing opportunities for books that are publishing post-holiday rush and up to almost a year from now, your potential licensees are starting to make their inquiries, and will close their first selections within a few short months.

Generally, the spans and selection times for licensees like book clubs, audio publishers, and even early foreign rights buys follow this pattern:

Titles publishing January through June ("spring"): Pitches begin in May, and selections generally are complete by the end of July of the previous year, though some will continue to select for late in the season through October.

This means that the window is starting to close for spring 2020 titles.

Titles publishing from July through December ("fall"): Pitches begin in November of the previous year, and selections generally are complete by the end of February. A few may select for late in the season through April.

From this timeline, you can see that we are actually beginning to enter prime time for fall 2020 selections.

What does this mean for your title list?

Ideally, here at GPC, we like to have preliminary materials (i.e., bibliographic information, initial sell sheets and sample chapters) in hand for our first inquiries starting in October, with early manuscripts and other marketing material following in November and December.

This does not mean that pitches can't occur outside of these seasons, but the chances for more positive inquiries go up if we start pitches earlier.

We'd love to hear what you have going on in 2020 and how we can help you do more with your list!

#fall #autumn #gryphon #rights #publishing #rightspitches

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Today marks World Intellectual Property Day 2019. Sponsored by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), this annual event revolves around a certain theme for study around a certain issue in intellectual property. This year's theme is "Reach for the Gold: IP and Sports," and there are a TON of great articles on the WIPO site about photography rights, IP and the Olympic Games, patents for sports equipment, and more. If you've never really had an interest in learning just what IP can affect in your daily life, this site makes a very compelling way to bone up on all things intellectual property.

This past Tuesday, April 23 was also World Book and Copyright Day, sponsored by UNESCO. This international celebration of reading and books not only celebrates the impact of books on people and cultures worldwide, but how books continue to help promote creativity and diversity.

As part of the World Book Day celebrations, a world book capital is selected as a representation of everything books. This year's capital is Sharjah. Learn more about the World Book Capital here.

Happy Reading!

#copyright #IP #WorldIPDay #Books #publishing #read

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I have just returned from a trip to London with my husband who was traveling there for a work assignment. As it was not my first time traveling there, it was a good time to explore some more offbeat museums and locations.

From visiting the Charles Dickens museum (situated in a house where he lived for a number of years), to the Tate Britain for a chance to look at some of William Blake's original etchings for "Songs of Innocence and Experience," London is truly a bibliophile's playground.

The British Library (which is an amazing place to visit on any day) even had a surprise to offer in the Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms exhibit. Illuminated manuscripts from ages ago? Check. Domesday Book? Check. Original copy of Beowulf? Check.

But to find in a little side panel of the London Transport Museum a court dispute in 1836 which highlights potential infringement in a mechanical design*? Bonus!

Mechanical designs, architectural drawings, literary, or artistic compositions, can be copyrighted. In this particular case, the plaintiff and defendant were locked in a battle to use a particular trolley design and color scheme to attract customers along the same route in London. It seems the defendant felt that they could "borrow" the overall look of its chief competitor in order to trick customers into riding their transportation service instead.

Now, we don't have the information on how the court case turned out, but we'd hazard a guess that the defendant was likely made to change their design (or at the very least, the colors) so as to not cause brand confusion.

What do you think?

*Arguably, this can also be seen as a trademark dispute, but the exhibition didn't really elaborate very much, and truthfully, I don't know enough about trademark law (and especially not in the UK) to make any assumptions. In reality, the case was likely just a dispute between two companies over a route and how much they could potentially copy one another.

#copyrighthistory #copyright #history #UK

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