View Full Version : How to Copyright Novel- Formatting Question

01-12-2014, 06:19 PM
Hi, everybody. I am planning to copyright my novel before self-publishing online and in print.

What format should the novel be in before submitting to the copyright office? Presently, it is double spaced with each chapter starting on a new page -- the format I originally used to send to publishers and agents.

Since I have made a number of editorial changes, many of the chapters do not start on a new page. Would this matter when sending it to the copyright office?

This may seem to be a nitpicky question, but I feel the need to have it answered.

I would really appreciate some guidance.


01-12-2014, 06:24 PM
I don't know the answer to the copyright office question. But as a general bit of advice for manuscripts, use a page/chapter break at the end of chapters. Don't start a new page by hitting the space bar lots of times. That way they'll continue to stay on their own page, no matter how you edit it.

01-12-2014, 07:02 PM
All creative wroks are automatically copyrighted upon completion and you don't need to register your work with the copyright office unless you seriously think that at some point someone will plagarize it and make money from it and you need to spend hundreds and hundreds of dollars on an attorney to take the matter to court, in which case you will (probably) need the copyrigjht registration as prima facie evidence. For most people, this scenario will never happen

01-12-2014, 07:36 PM
See: http://www.copyright.gov/forms/

01-12-2014, 07:38 PM
The format is not relevant to the copyright, since it's the content which is copyrighted. So I don't think it matters at all.

01-12-2014, 11:32 PM
Thanks so much all,

Very helpful information, particularly the page break info and the formatting for copyright issue. I decided not to get bent out of shape about it.