Copyright Page Samples You Can Copy and Paste Into Your Book

by Joel Friedlander on January 15, 2010 · 113 comments

copyrightOne of the most common questions I get from new self-publishers is, “What do I put on the copyright page?” For some reason, the copyright page has the power to intimidate some people, with its small print and legalistic language, not to mention all those mysterious numbers.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are a few necessary items on the copyright page, and others that publishers add for various reasons. I’ve treated the copyright page in some detail in other posts, so if you want background please check here: Self-Publishing Basics: The Copyright Page. In a guest post, Joanne Bolton supplied some useful information for books that are printed overseas, and you can find her post here: Copyright Page Requirements for Books Printed Overseas.

To see the place of the copyright page within the book as a whole, check out An Unabridged List of the Parts of a Book.

The only elements required on a copyright page are the copyright notice itself:

© 2009 Joel Friedlander

And some statement giving notice that the rights to reproduce the work are reserved to the copyright holder.

All Rights Reserved.

Next you’ll see two versions of the copyright page, one long page with a CIP data block and a short version. Feel free to copy and paste these into your book file. Just remember to put your own information in.

Sample of a Long Copyright Page with CIP Data Block

Here’s an example of a copyright page that has the necessary elements, then adds ordering information, web address, CIP Data block (I’ve put this in blue so you can identify what is included; replace this with your own or delete it if you’re not obtaining CIP), edition information, and printing numbers (the string at the bottom) and dates for future editions.

Copyright © 2010 by Bill Shakespeare

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law. For permission requests, write to the publisher, addressed “Attention: Permissions Coordinator,” at the address below.

Imaginary Press
1233 Pennsylvania Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94909
www.imaginarypress.com

Ordering Information:
Quantity sales. Special discounts are available on quantity purchases by corporations, associations, and others. For details, contact the publisher at the address above.
Orders by U.S. trade bookstores and wholesalers. Please contact Big Distribution: Tel: (800) 800-8000; Fax: (800) 800-8001 or visit www.bigbooks.com.

Printed in the United States of America

Publisher’s Cataloging-in-Publication data
Shakespeare, William.
A title of a book : a subtitle of the same book / Bill Shakespeare ; with Ben Johnson.
p. cm.
ISBN 978-0-9000000-0-0
1. The main category of the book —History —Other category. 2. Another subject category —From one perspective. 3. More categories —And their modifiers. I. Johnson, Ben. II. Title.
HF0000.A0 A00 2010
299.000 00–dc22 2010999999

First Edition

14 13 12 11 10 / 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

A Short Copyright Page Example

Here’s a very short and to the point copyright page. It gives the necessary elements and not much more:

Copyright © 2010 by Wily E. Coyote
All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof
may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever
without the express written permission of the publisher
except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.

Printed in the United States of America

First Printing, 2010

ISBN 0-9000000-0-0

Falling Anvil Publishing
123 Mesa Street
Scottsdale, AZ 00000

www.FallingAnvilBooks.com

This is the quick and easy way to get generic copyright page language into your book. Even with this short example, your copyright page will do the job it’s supposed to do, and give interested parties the means to contact you for publishing-related questions.

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p class=”note”>Next: Tomorrow we’ll cover using disclaimers and giving credit on the copyright page. Watch for it, and let me know if you have questions about the copyright page. I’ll see if I can answer them.

Self-Publisher's-Quick-Easy-Guide-CopyrightWant to know more about copyright? Need some sample copyright pages to drop into your book? Confused about the things you read online about copyright? Check out this 30-page easy-to-read guide. Click The Self-Publisher’s Quick & Easy Guide to Copyright for more info, or Buy Now as PDF or Kindle.

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    { 95 comments… read them below or add one }

    Ken Owens May 17, 2015 at 4:49 am

    Sir, I’m now completing my autobiography as a photographer. I will be adding photographs from my non-profit organization where I worked. Can I just put the “©” saying that all photographs are copyrighted by so-so organization or must it be more specific? Thank you for helping!

    Reply

    Fred Schenkelberg May 9, 2015 at 7:16 am

    Hi Joel,

    If I’d like to use a creative commons license instead of a copyright, are those separate and mutually exclusive or not. What would change on the copyright page?

    Reply

    Joel Friedlander May 19, 2015 at 10:49 am

    Fred, Creative Commons is a private extension of the permissions granted by copyright. For a fuller discussion, see this article: Creative Commons: What Every Self-Publisher Ought to Know.

    Reply

    lin May 5, 2015 at 1:31 pm

    Hi, In my authors group, there is a discussion about putting a local address or a p o box on the copyright page. Can you use a p o box or is it even necessary to add an address if you are a self publisher. Why not just put your email there or website for contact.
    This is such a great place to visit and learn.

    Reply

    E May 18, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    You would put your address or P.O. Box if you wanted another way for people to contact you. It is not necessary to add this information, but using email addresses and phone numbers is a newer technology, and adding the physical address of the publisher is more of an old-fashioned way of publishing things. However you want to be contacted is what you should put.

    Reply

    Raya Gray May 5, 2015 at 1:23 pm

    Dear Joel,

    My partner is a dentist and he is planning to publish an educational book for patients about dentistry.

    Could you kindly let me know if we can include his title in the copyright statement, e.g. © 2015 Dr Iain Smith
    Thank you in advance for your help, Kind regards
    Raya

    Reply

    MAYOWA IBRAHIM April 29, 2015 at 12:45 pm

    Greetings to you Mr. Joel Friedlander. I’m a young passionate writer. My first book is almost ready for printing but I have the challenge of copyrighting my book and getting ISBN. I want to get the book to online stores, will it be sufficient for me to copyright and get ISBN from Nigeria on the book or do I still have some home work to do? Your reply will be appreciated. Thanks for being there for us who want to make a difference.

    Reply

    Joel Friedlander April 29, 2015 at 2:06 pm

    Mayowa, if you—the publisher—are located in Nigeria, then you should get your ISBN there and conform to Nigerian copyright practices.

    Reply

    EJA April 1, 2015 at 10:54 am

    Can two parties own the copyright?
    As in: © 2009 John Doe & Jane Roe

    Reply

    Joel Friedlander April 1, 2015 at 12:23 pm

    EJA, yes, any book with more than one author is in the same category. You just list both authors and describe their contributions when you file your copyright form.

    Reply

    Caroline February 9, 2015 at 2:33 pm

    Hi,
    I am in the process of self publishing my book with Amazon create space. I erroneously told them my copyright date for my book was 2008.
    I just got my certificate for this book from the US copyright office where they have 2010 as the year of completion.
    Do you think this will cause a problem?. It’s not too late for me to change the date with Amazon since I’m still in the proofing stage but they will charge me.

    I appreciate your advice on this.
    Thanks !!
    Caroline

    Reply

    Melanie February 4, 2015 at 5:28 am

    Hello – I am getting ready to self publish my first book (and am very excited!) I have been told so many different things regarding the copyright page I wanted to get your input.
    I write for children and use a pen name. Do I copyright under the pen name or my real name? (I don’t want anyone to know my real name yet.) I was considering getting a registered trademark for my pen name so that in the future, there is legal documentation that the pen name is associated with Me (real name). (I have heard that this can be a problem with family members proving that the fictitious person is really their family member.
    Second – If I am self publishing, what do I use as a “publisher”? Amazon KDP? Is it even necessary to put that on the copyright page?
    I’m sorry if I am rambling – I am just stalled at the moment and need a little help. Thanks!

    Reply

    wendy brown May 19, 2015 at 7:07 am

    I have the same query as Melanie about being reluctant to reveal anything but my pen name for my first book. I would like to use my pen name on the copywright page but if I do this how can I safe guard ownership?

    Reply

    Joel Friedlander May 19, 2015 at 11:37 am

    Wendy and Melanie, you can display your copyright notice in the book in your pen name or your publishing company name, then you’ll use your real name on your copyright registration.

    Reply

    Gabriel January 31, 2015 at 12:04 pm

    I am doing a personal research. I have 2 books which I need to photocopy 3 to 4 pages out of each one of them, and send it to a very well know University in the UK. There is any reason I can not sent those copies to the University? They are just a statement to prove parts of my letter. Those two books are both produced in Portugal one is from 1961 very special edition only available in the U.S. only in the Library of the Congress, and the other one is in English only available in Portugal for the general public but is sailed on the museum book store on 500 available.

    Reply

    Joel Friedlander February 2, 2015 at 11:41 am

    Gabriel, you can certainly photocopy the pages to send to the university, there’s no copyright infringement in that.

    Reply

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