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Fresie
11-10-2010, 11:32 PM
Hello everyone,

A friend of mine, a Russian publisher, is dying to translate and publish a book by an American author... the problem is, the book is rather old. He contacted the American publisher who says that the rights have reverted to the author and they have no contact with him any more and have no idea where to look for him.

The editor Googled him, of course, but to no avail. The question is, short of hiring a private detective, how can the Russian publisher find and contact the writer? My Russian friend tends to believe that there is a particular literary agency in the USA that handles such "rightless" publishing issues and takes it upon themselves to track down the missing authors... is that true? I've never heard about it. What would you suggest?

Thank you very much!

IceCreamEmpress
11-10-2010, 11:44 PM
The Authors Guild (http://www.authorsguild.org/) might be able to find the person.

Send me the person's name in a PM and I might be able to find them for your friend.

BenPanced
11-10-2010, 11:45 PM
I've never heard of such an agency, and I doubt an agent would take on a "rightless" publication because of the legal implications, especially if copyright is still in force. Besides, agents have enough to carry without having to worry about tracking down a "missing" client. It'd be too much extra work them to do, and if they couldn't find the author, they still wouldn't be able to submit the work.

Fresie
11-10-2010, 11:53 PM
The Authors Guild (http://www.authorsguild.org/) might be able to find the person.

Send me the person's name in a PM and I might be able to find them for your friend.

Thank you so very much! I've contacted the editor and will send you the name as soon as he gives it to me. I really appreciate it, thanks!


I've never heard of such an agency, and I doubt an agent would take on a "rightless" publication because of the legal implications, especially if copyright is still in force. Besides, agents have enough to carry without having to worry about tracking down a "missing" client. It'd be too much extra work them to do, and if they couldn't find the author, they still wouldn't be able to submit the work.

That's exactly what I thought myself! Thank you!

benbradley
11-11-2010, 01:26 AM
Hello everyone,

A friend of mine, a Russian publisher, is dying to translate and publish a book by an American author... the problem is, the book is rather old.
Exactly HOW old? If it was published before what's the year, 1924, you can be pretty certain it's out of copyright.

He contacted the American publisher who says that the rights have reverted to the author and they have no contact with him any more and have no idea where to look for him.

The editor Googled him, of course, but to no avail. The question is, short of hiring a private detective, how can the Russian publisher find and contact the writer? My Russian friend tends to believe that there is a particular literary agency in the USA that handles such "rightless" publishing issues and takes it upon themselves to track down the missing authors... is that true? I've never heard about it. What would you suggest?

Thank you very much!
If these other avenues fail, go ahead and hire a private detective. I don't think finding a person is that expensive.

veinglory
11-11-2010, 01:37 AM
What is the current legal state in terms of 'orphaned works' and what constitutes making a reasonable effort to locate the creator? I know there was a lot of discussion about that recently but am not sure where it ended up in terms of the law in the US....

Fresie
11-11-2010, 02:28 AM
Exactly HOW old? If it was published before what's the year, 1924, you can be pretty certain it's out of copyright.

No, it's not old enough to be in public domain.


If these other avenues fail, go ahead and hire a private detective. I don't think finding a person is that expensive.

It might come to that :hat:

Thank you very much!

Fresie
11-11-2010, 02:29 AM
What is the current legal state in terms of 'orphaned works' and what constitutes making a reasonable effort to locate the creator? I know there was a lot of discussion about that recently but am not sure where it ended up in terms of the law in the US....

This is extremely interesting, thank you!