Thursday, March 21, 2013

Write about me!

"When are you going to write about me?" Somebody asked me that yesterday. It's as if they assume that I can make them famous. They can use their fame at cocktail parties perhaps. "I'm on page 272," apparently could be a pick up line,  Let me know if it works...

Actually, there is a guy who works out at my gym who I have indeed put in my books and let him know about it. He bears a strong resemblance to Gollum in the Lord of the Rings series. That was not meant as a compliment. Still, he has gone around the gym bragging about fame. Needless to say having a resemblance to Gollum has NOT been working as a pick up line for him.

One guy was actually hostile to me for NOT writing about him for two books in a row, so I actually did create a character based on him. The character says "When are you going to write about me?" to an author at a signing. I pointed the page out to him and he was so happy. Unfortunately, he didn't buy the book.

I did wait until someone had died before publishing a story where a character was clearly based on him. I haven't had a seance yet to know what he thinks.

In Rattlesnake Lawyer I named a character after a woman after she had given me oral permission to use the name. Right before publication, I asked her if I still had permission. She took her permission back and I changed the name. That's the only time I've ever done that. Have I used the name since then? I'm not saying...

I go out of my way NOT to write about living people, or change things up so much that people can't recognize themselves in my book. People can sue, however they would have to show real damages from something I write before any lawyer would take the case.

It is a good rule of thumb that if your book sells ten copies, no one will sue you. If your book sells a million copies, EVERYONE will sue you! I hope to be sued someday...

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