Most authors of fiction and nonfiction have limited knowledge of the legal aspects of copyright and the serious ramifications
when they don't read the fine print in their contracts, says published author Raven West of Thousand Oaks.
So she will discuss "Copyright Law and Avoiding Defamation Law Suits" on July 21 in Ventura, during the second annual West
Coast Author Premiere.
"This will give a concise education in intellectual property law and include an outline as to what is and what is not defamation
in regards to the First Amendment," said West, a graduate of the Southern California Institute of Law in Ventura and a member
of the Authors Guild.
She hopes participants will gain knowledge of the business end of publication and the ability to avoid making huge mistakes
before they happen and how to correct them if they do.
Legal aspects often not discussed
"There are very few seminars that talk about the legal aspect of the writing profession," West said. "As the publication
industry changes almost daily, it is vital to writers to be aware of how much they stand to lose if they are not informed.
"Agents may be well versed on contract negotiations but have little knowledge on intellectual property law. Writers can
no longer afford to abide by the phrase publish at any price' when millions of Internet and reprint dollars are at stake."
West is one of two speakers who will talk to guests attending the second annual West Coast Author Premiere, a three-day
event for and by writers that kicks off with a dinner July 20 at the SideCar Restaurant in Ventura, continuing July 21 and
July 22 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Ventura.
The premiere was made possible by authors Robin Gorley and Starr Reina, who decided it was time to create such an event
on the West Coast.
One year ago, Gorley spoke to fellow authors about launching an event locally.
"It was well received, and from there the first ever West Coast Publish America Author Event was planned," said Gorley,
a published author and editor whose books include "A Lifetime of Words" and "A Lifetime of Words — Spirit for the Soul."
"Although our event was successful, we wanted to open it up and have other authors from different publishers join us for
our next West Coast Author Premiere," said Gorley, who lives in Casmalia, a small town near Santa Maria.
"Both Starr and I felt it was important to do this, as our goals are always to help our fellow authors," she said. "You
know what they say about strength in numbers? Well, it is definitely true."
Chance to meet the authors
On July 20, guests are invited to a meet-and-greet dinner at The SideCar Restaurant in Ventura, where speaker West will
address the topics "Know Your Rights Before You're Left Out," and "Sticks and Stones and Defamation." Author Patricia Fry
of Ojai will also discuss "How to Succeed in Today's Publishing Climate."
A book signing will take place July 21 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on the beachside Promenade in Ventura, followed by a breakfast
for authors and their families only, on July 22.
Gather authors, promote books
"The ultimate goal of this event is to bring authors together to help promote their books, and give them a chance to network
with other authors, exchanging ideas and ways in which they can market their books," said Gorley, emphasizing that the event
will take place annually in Ventura.
"We have found through our research that there are not too many events like this on the West Coast," she said.
"Most big events like this are held on the East Coast or Midwest. So our ultimate goal was to create an event that would
be on the West Coast."
Reina, a published mystery author who lives in Thousand Oaks, hopes participants will reap material to read and enjoy.
"We also feel it's important for authors to network with one another, share ideas and be part of the bigger picture —
meaning, it's a large world out there with a lot of authors," said Reina, author of "Cruel Whispers" and "Cruel Past." "Some
are well known while others are trying to make their way. We want all authors to know they have the support, should they need
Editorial comment: Our condolences to Robin Westmiller on the loss of her father, who was the inspiration for her book,
Blood Tastes Lousy With Scotch.
Thanks to Ventura County Star for the above article.