18 September 2003

Over the next week or so, I will be blawging about yet another dirty little secret in the publishing industry—an outright deceptive practice. I will be working from the following examples, which are hypothetical descriptions of the same book. N.B. These are variations on a real book; the publisher, in my judgment, did it correctly. This time. It is a useful starting point, because that publisher does not always do it correctly.

No. Cover Credit Title Page Credit Copyright
1 X with A X with A X
2 X and A X and A X and A
3 X X with A X and A
4 X X X and A
5 X X X

The starting point will be a nonfictional memoir of a public figure ("X") for which a substantial proportion of the writing was done by a professional ghostwriter ("A"). For the present, assume that there is a proper contract that makes A's contribution a work for hire by X.