So why exactly do you need a sample copyright page?
One 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 Copyright Page #1: Long Version 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.
1233 Pennsylvania Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94909
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
A title of a book : a subtitle of the same book / Bill Shakespeare ; with Ben Johnson.
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
14 13 12 11 10 / 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
Sample Copyright Page #2: Short Version
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
Falling Anvil Publishing
123 Mesa Street
Scottsdale, AZ 00000
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.
If you’re looking for a company to help you finish the formatting and design of your book, look no further. We now have publishing packages to help you.
I’m wondering about the copyright page for a second edition where there is a new publisher. Do I need to include the first publisher info as well as the current? Original book said “First published int he United States of America by ”
It was originally done in 2007, does the copyright need to be updated to say ©2020 only of ©2007-2020?
Good question. I’ve done it two different ways: (1) We noted only the copyright year of the second edition and included “Previously published under the ISBN 978-___________” and and in another book (2) we noted all the copyright years and did not name or reference a previous edition.
I plan to self publish a digital product. It is a type of planner, of sorts. My guess is most folks will print up their paper copy at home. I have a lot of colorful images, so some people may need to go somewhere like Office Max or Staples to have it printed. (I personally do not own a color printer). I’d like to give permission to print one copy for their exclusive use.
Is there anything different I need to do since this product will be delivered in a digital format? Also, for the copyright, do I use my personal name, or business name, or both to make sure I’m covered? Thanks you!
Walid, there’s no rule per se but we always reduce the size 1 or 2 points for the copyright page.
Hey Joel, I have a question and would appreciate a reply. I have a book that I will be printing in font size 12, should the text on the copyright page be the same font size or smaller?
Thanks very much bro for sharing this useful information.
Does ISBN number is mandatory?
Twenty years later & this is still a great read, Joel!
I have a single, short, three-line acknowledgement I’d like to include on the copyright page. The copyright & publisher information occurs on the bottom half of the page; the top is completely blank. How & where on the page should I include my acknowledgement? That is, should I place it at the top? Or perhaps a third of the page down? And should I just start with my words or lead them off with Acknowledgement (underlined?)?
Robert, you’ve asked a lot of good questions and you should be able to find the answers on thebookdesigner.com website. Check the categories or use the search box to find lots of articles on copyright (both the author and publisher would be supplying information for that page) as well as book formatting, design tips for ebooks, book design templates and more.
Hello Joel. I am just finishing writing an eBook as an individual and not a company or business (it’s a hobby). I have a website that I pay for each year and have written several guides for Interview Techniques. Now I have rewritten and added content to make one of my six guides into an eBook that I am going to ‘test the waters’ and sell on Amazon Kindle. I have never done this before.
I have been reading your copyright examples, should it include digitally sharing and downloading the publication. Do I have to put my home address (although I am on Google maps), or direct all enquiries to my website and email address?
What is the etiquette for the designing of an eBook? Does it have an Index, a Back Cover? and how many images should be included, is one image per page too much, or one every two? I’ve spaced the font as Multiple and used Ariel 11. Are there any guidelines that I should be following?
Sorry for all the questions – I couldn’t find anywhere else to ask.
Thanks for sharing this. Quite informative.
I am looking forward to publish a book on how to grow roses at home.
This is very helpful.
Thank you for this! I’m would like to ask for your permission to use Short Copyright Page for our school project which is a collection of Musical lyrics. thanks
You are free to use any of the copyright statements or disclaimers in this article.
Hi Joel! Really appreciate the work you’re doing over here. Very, very helpful stuff. It really helps a lot! Thank you for the responses.
Thank you! I followed your format for my forthcoming book.
I used it on my book called “Resident Evil Slides Edition” on google slides
Thank you for the great information
Thank you very much for your time and helpful information.
Maurice, the entire manuscript is copyrighted–you’ll submit the entire book when you file the paperwork, which will include pages with just text or pages with diagrams and illustrations that you have created.
Maurice, you don’t need to anything special about those. They would be included in the copyright paperwork submission that you would file within the first 90 days after the book’s publication date.
As a digression, how would you protect a few written pages about an idea that have no illustrations or diagrams?
Quite used ot the default copyright page sample and copy this is enlightening on other samples for the same. Thanks.
Thanks a lot!
Isaac, you can use just your website and email. Many authors and publishing companies use a mail box, either USPS or a mail box store.
I love this and appreciate you have this available for us. Question: I do not want to place my personal address on the copy-write page. Can i just place my website and the email address where to contact me?
Thanks for this insightful post on copyrighting and isbn. Everything is useful to get my first guide on project writing publishing and acceptable. Thanks
Thanks for the tip… pause
… and … ?
This is really valuable, thanks for taking your time to share this valuable taught with us. Hoping to write my book shortly, I’d apply this knowledge here
I just finished written my book and just got to know about copyright and come across this post. Thanks