Sample Copyright Pages [Two Free Templates for Your Book]

by | Sep 10, 2021

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.

nonfiction book outline template v2

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.

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

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

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.

How about a “done-for-you” book template WITH copyright page?

You can grab it below! Cheers!

nonfiction book outline template v2
tbd advanced publishing starter kit

207 Comments

  1. Travis Roark

    Thank you very much for your time and helpful information.

    Reply
  2. Sharon

    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.

    Reply
  3. Sharon

    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.

    Reply
  4. Maurice Lewis

    As a digression, how would you protect a few written pages about an idea that have no illustrations or diagrams?

    Reply
  5. Paul Simiyu

    Quite used ot the default copyright page sample and copy this is enlightening on other samples for the same. Thanks.

    Reply
  6. Joshua

    Thanks a lot!

    Reply
  7. Sharon

    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.

    Reply
  8. Isaac Mendoza

    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?

    Reply
  9. Project materials

    Thanks for this insightful post on copyrighting and isbn. Everything is useful to get my first guide on project writing publishing and acceptable. Thanks

    Reply
  10. Blak Rhyno

    Thanks for the tip… pause

    Reply
    • Joel Friedlander

      … and … ?

      Reply
  11. Harrison Aniebiet

    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

    Reply
    • Post utme

      I just finished written my book and just got to know about copyright and come across this post. Thanks

      Reply
  12. Margaret Gee

    Having just signed my Revocable Trust documents, I’ve also had prepared an Assignment to transfer all my previous novels into the Trust. For future novels I write, I will list myself as author and the Trust as claimant when registering with the Copyright Office. On the copyright page of my next novel, would I then list the Trust after the copyright symbol and year, or would just my name be sufficient or do I list both the Trust and my name? And do I need to revise the copyright pages of my previous novels to reflect the Trust?

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Margaret, I have had a trust listed on the copyright page of a book I worked on. We got the exact wording needed from the author’s attorneys. I would recommend you check with your estate and intellectual property attorney for the correct wording for your book.

      Reply
  13. Sara Joe

    Thanks for the thoughtful tips and explanation.

    Reply
  14. Richard Bell

    I have read everything and still have one basic question. I am going to convert from CS only and get an ISBN so I can do Ingram. I am just an individual indie author with no company. What do I do about the Imprint? Can I use my own name as author and publisher? What are my options to be as simple as possible?
    Thanks for your help and I hope you still monitor this link.
    Regards,
    Richard Bell

    Reply
  15. Melissa

    What would be the correct footer for a book (it’s a planner) copyrighted in 2010 and edited in 2017. Is this OK (c would be correct symbol):

    c 2000 by Jane Doe edited 2017

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Melissa, I think you are referring to running heads (or running feet). Normally in a book, the running heads/feet contain the title of the book and the author’s name (although it could contain the part and chapter titles, or other variations for a traditional book or you may not need anything for a planner). The copyright information (the year the book is being published–not written or edited) belongs on the copyright page only (not on every page). Using one of the examples above in this article is all you need for the copyright information.

      Reply
  16. john

    i need to write an unwritten book.

    Reply
    • Joel Friedlander

      You may need to stock up on invisible ink.

      Reply
      • Margaret

        haha

        Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Warren,

      You’ll notice these numbers in the article above: 14 13 12 11 10 / 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1. These numbers correspond to the year the book was published (2010) and this is a first printing (since all the numbers from 10 to 1 appear). On the second printing, you need to delete the “1” at the end of the string, which indicates that this is a second printing.

      Reply
      • Timothy Archibong Esu

        …This information is cool… Thanks Sharon…

        Timothy

        Reply
      • ZilWerks

        In old days the lead casting had the numbers on them, and when they printed another set (edition) of a book they simply struck off the number.
        I am perhaps the last of my generation to learn hot-type.

        Reply
        • Joel Friedlander

          Zil, there are plenty of us still around who learned hot type, locked up forms, and did make ready. Welcome.

          Reply
  17. Yvette

    Thanks for this useful info. Can i also use the above sample for service or eCommerce copyright?

    Reply
  18. hazel

    i would like to ask if i can use this for my story on wattpad ? i will use the short copyright

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Hazel, feel free to copy and paste the samples above (as applicable) into your book file. Just remember to put your own information in.

      Reply
    • Brittany

      I write on Wattpad as well here for the same thing lol .

      Reply
      • Mbalenhle

        Same here, that’s legit why i searched for this

        Reply
  19. Manasa

    hello friends , can some one help me with this ? can we write like this ” © xxx Inc., 2017. All rights reserved, v1.0.0 .” for releasing my app in the playstore ?

    Thanks ,
    Manasa

    Reply
  20. Angel

    Thank you for this! I’m would like to ask for your permission to use “Short Copyright Page Example” for our school project which is a collection of poems.

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Angel, feel free to copy and paste these into your book file. Just remember to put your own information in.

      Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Angel, feel free to use the examples for your project.

      Reply
  21. Rain Wolfe

    Is there anything for 2017? Or is it the same?

    Reply
    • Joel Friedlander

      Rain, nothing affected by the information in this post has changed.

      Reply
      • Rain Wolfe

        Thanks Joel!

        Reply
  22. Lázaro A. dos Santos

    Alô. Eu gostaria de saber como e onde eu devo registrar as minhas fotos! Ficarei muito agradecido se desde já pela vossa preciosa ajuda.

    Reply
    • George Garrigues

      “Hello. I would like to know how and where I should register my pics! I will be very thankful for your precious help from now on.”

      You don’t need to “register,” or “registrar,” any photos. You own the
      copyright merely by creating them. What exactly are you trying to do?

      Reply
  23. Elizabeth

    Hello and thanks so much for this info. If I do not own a registered copyright, can I still have some verbiage on my title page saying that the images, story, etc. cannot be used?

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Yes, Elizabeth, you can and you should. The copyright registration has to do with potential lawsuits and damages. You work is your work and you own it regardless of whether you’ve registered it or not. Although you should register it within ninety days of your publication date, it’s never too late. So you can still do it now.

      Reply
  24. Regina Clarke

    I recently noticed my earlier books showed the copyright notice in a slightly different way from my later books. I checked Google and the Copyright Office and got a ton of somewhat contrary data to sort through–but then up came this article and as soon as I saw it was on TheBookDesigner my search was done. I knew I’d found the best answer. Thank you yet again, Joel, for this fabulous and trustworthy website!

    Reply
    • Joel Friedlander

      Regina,

      I couldn’t be happier that we were able to help. Good luck with your books, and thanks for leaving this comment today.

      Reply
  25. Gernel

    Thanks for your helpful tips… Good job

    Reply
  26. sandeep chakraborty

    If i am pubishing my book on amazan kdp, what should i write in my copyright page

    Reply
  27. shelly M. Loke

    What are the purpose of these numbers and codes in your example?

    HF0000.A0 A00 2010
    299.000 00–dc22 2010999999

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

    Thank you so much.

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Shelly, those numbers are part of the CIP (cataloging in publication) data right above those numbers needed and used by libraries.

      Reply
      • Arvind Agrawal

        Hi
        So informative your website is!
        Regarding those CIP No (HF0000.A0 A00 2010
        299.000 00–dc22 2010999999
        14 13 12 11 10 / 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1)

        @ q’s
        1. I still did not understand how to get it (from where to get it) as an author.
        2. Those LC Parmalinks: are they available to publishers in US only? Can I get it if I am publishing on Kindle Direct Publishing?

        Reply
  28. Ekjot

    thanks sooooo much you rock!!

    Reply
  29. Bridget

    Thanks for this! It was really helpful.

    Reply
  30. Chris DiMattei

    Thank for this, it is very helpful. Quick question. Can copyright be held by a deceased author? I am finishing a book started by another author, who has since, passed away. Should I be the copyright holder, or can it still be held by both myself and the initial author, who passed away? Thanks.

    Reply
      • George Garrigues

        The rights of the deceased author pass on to his estate, so his or her heirs or assigns might have a claim against any income from the sale of the book. Better consult a lawyer.

        Reply
    • KKM

      It’s the original author’s property, still, and will be for fifty years since his or her passing. It is not in the public domain yet, so it’s still under the protection of copyright laws. Definitely don’t write or meddle with someone else’s work, unless you have expressed permission to do so (e.g. fanfiction).

      Reply
  31. Gina Davis

    Hi, My partner and I are working on a Workshop book. The book will only be delivered digitally. It’s possible in the future we might opt to print the Workshop book.

    What would you suggest in both instances?

    Reply
  32. Avinash

    Sir i want to open an educational website about programming languages and networking. How can i make be sure i am not violating copywrite law or any such laws . There are hundreds of book are already published on same topic and chances are there that content might match. Plzz help me out.

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Avinash, there are many articles on copyright on our site. I think this one is a good one to start with to answer your question: https://www.thebookdesigner.com/2015/03/stop-thief-writers-and-plagiarism/. It talks about what you can use from other people’s writings. You might also consider hiring an intellectual property attorney to discuss this matter with. He or she can review your site and its contents as well as answer your questions and advise you.

      Reply
    • George Garrigues

      If you haven’t copied anything from another book or work, you should be OK. If you’ve directly copied wording (not just ideas), keep it to just a few lines and be sure to credit the guy or gal whose work you’ve cited.

      Reply
  33. Magrit

    I had a book published in another country, got the copyright and ISBN of it. Now I translated it to English and want to publish the English version. In the copyright page, I would like to mention that this book was translated from the original. How i do it? Do I mention the copyright info from the first book done overseas with its ISBN and then add the copyright and ISBN for the English version? Any model for this?

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Magrit, yes, there is a model for what information to include on the copyright page. The Chicago Manual of Style (CMS) is the style manual for the publishing industry. See CMS 1.29 (and figure 1.3 for a sample) of what you’re asking about. You can either purchase the book or you can check out the CMS site https://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/home.html.

      Reply
  34. Aimee Clark

    Thanks for this! Is it important to include an address? I don’t want people reading my recipe e-book to see my home address, which is where I work from. Can I just include email and website information and it still be legal? Thanks :)

    Reply
    • Sharon Goldinger

      Aimee, I like to include an address but never a home address. You can get a Mail Boxes, etc., UPS Store, etc., address for your publishing company. But if you don’t, then an e-mail and website is fine.

      Reply

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