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Legal Issues for Self-Publishing Authors

Have legal questions about self-publishing? Here's your chance to get all those questions answered from an attorney who is also a self-published author.

Chicago attorney Mary Hutchings Reed will join us at the Lincoln Park Library Community Room on Thursday, Feb. 6 to discuss copyright, fair use, collaborating with others, contracts, and more -- and we'll leave plenty of time for Q&A. 

Copies of Mary's newly published and highly recommended book, titled Book Law for Authors, will be available for purchase for $10 (cash only). 

The meeting starts at 6:15pm but feel free to come a little early to network. The library is about 4 blocks west of the Fullerton CTA station, and the Fullerton bus stops nearby. There is a small parking lot next to the library and street parking in the area. 

After the meeting we'll adjourn to a nearby restaurant for buy-your-own food and drinks. We'd love to have you join us so we can continue the conversation about legal issues for authors.

Hope to see you on February 6!

Kim Bookless, Organizer

Speaker information:

Mary Hutchings Reed is a former partner and now of counsel to the law firm of Winston & Strawn, and has practiced copyright, trademark, advertising, entertainment, and sponsorship law for almost 38 years. She is the author of several legal books, including "Book Law for Authors," published this past fall by Lawyers for the Creative Arts, and of two independently published novels, Courting Kathleen Hannigan (Ampersand 2007) and Warming Up (She Writes Press 2013).

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  • Kim B.

    Attorneys Mary Hutchins Reed and Marci Rolnik of Lawyers for the Creative Arts (LCA) gave a helpful and informative presentation on legal issues for authors, including copyright, fair use, and privacy. See the files page for handouts:

    1 · February 8, 2014

    • Linda W.

      Awesome, Kim. I was so sorry to miss this!

      1 · February 8, 2014

  • Tom K.

    That was a great, informative discussion -- and good fun, too.

    2 · February 6, 2014

  • Wynette

    Just got out of a meeting and have a noon deadline to meet. Sorry to back out. Please share notes. Thanks and see you next time.

    1 · February 6, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Bummer, I'm going to have to bail on this last minute. Have to finish up a project today that's taking longer than expected. Was looking forward to this, but will hopefully catch up soon.

    1 · February 6, 2014

  • Jo Anne L.

    Had to cancel due to car trouble and computer trouble. Not a good day for me! I hope you can post notes or power point maybe? See you next time I hope.

    1 · February 6, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Drat, the freezing weather has forced me to miss out as well.

    1 · February 6, 2014

  • Heather

    Sorry I won't be able to make this one, though I already have the book :-) Catch you at another meeting soon. Enjoy!

    1 · February 5, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I've just purchased a copy of Mary's book and look forward to having some questions ready! I encourage everyone to check out Mary's audio interview at If you're looking for a easy-to-follow primer copyright law and other legal issues related online publishing, below are some videos of my own work in the field. (Disclosure: The attorney is a former colleague of mine but I have no commercial interest, just a subject I share a passion for education and awareness.)

    Can I Do That Online? Copyright Law, Video, and Online Posting

    Social Media Marketing and the Law: What Everyone Should Know!

    1 · January 31, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I particularly enjoyed this quote from Mary Hutchings Reed in her recent Chicago Tribune interview:

    "You don't make money. My leaving the full-time practice of law was a stupid economic decision — one should question whether they should take back my economics degree — but it wasn't an economic decision. It was a soul-making decision. Absolutely soul-making. I would be a nutcase today if I didn't give myself the chance to do this. I get incredible satisfaction from it."

    Speaking as a former paid blogger, I can agree that success and happiness from writing doesn't come from generating income, it comes from finding your own voice. That being said, I do better soul-searching when I have room to breathe with an economic foundation and savings already in place.

    1 · January 28, 2014

  • Brian J.

    Unfortunately, I will not be able to attend as I will be in WI, but I am looking forward to attending the March 3rd panel discussion.

    1 · January 27, 2014

  • Jo Anne L.

    So many things to consider! So little time to do it all! Found a great designer and editor so I'm making some progress!

    1 · January 15, 2014

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