Hi Miss Snark,
I have a copyright question - I am a first time author of a Fantasy novel which I am still trying to get published. I started writing the book in 2003 and had it officially copyrighted in 2005. Just recently I discovered a book (written by one of the most famous authors ever), that uses my story-line. Although the authors story is written with a different twist, the general concept is the same, and he even uses the exact title I used for a major earth event. It is basically my novel written as a horror story rather than a fantasy. This author had his work copyrighted and published in 2006 (and it has made the best seller list). Do I have any rights? Can a relatively unknown (me) even have a chance against a gorilla in the industry? What options do I have?
Thank you for your time
Do you have any rights? You mean, because he came up with the same idea you did, you get part of his money?
Copyright infringement means that someone took YOUR work, your actual words, because they saw it, had access to it, or in some way used work that was not theirs. Copyright infringement is not "we had the same idea and he got his published first".
Copyright is not a patent or a trademark. You copyright the body of work, not your ideas, and not your titles, and certainly not names and phrases. Although, if you use the phrase "nitwit of the day" you owe me $20.