closed yellow elevator doors

Author’s Guide: Practicing a Perfect Pitch

We’ve all heard of the ubiquitous “elevator pitch” and its amazing powers of persuasion. We all have experience with it—the cold email calls, the flyering, the endless scroll of Submittable. Authors must hone this skill in their search for an agent or publisher, so you might think that publishers have surpassed the need to whip out an Emmy-winning pitch on the spot. Unfortunately, this is not at all the case. In fact, agents and publishers are constantly pitching your manuscript—to their own sales and marketing teams, to subsidiary rights agents, to other publishers, etc. Once we acquire your book, we never stop tooting its horn until it has fulfilled its potential. And that includes a lot of pitching.

A publisher’s pitch isn’t all that different from an author’s, except a publisher might have some sales numbers to boost their confidence. But the core goal is the same: you want your listener to understand what it feels like to read your book. Pitching a book is selling an experience and an idea—the best way to snag the interest of your potential reader or buyer is to sell them on the experience they’ll have while reading your book. A great way to do that is by explaining how your book is at the crossroads of different genres. It helps give an idea of which readers will enjoy your book while also making it sound unique. A nifty trick to this is picking one genre that’s currently very popular, and another that’s more timeless. For example, you might say that your book is a domestic suspense (very popular in the past few years) with a women’s fiction angle (a genre with some longevity). You can also take two fairly disparate examples and neatly explain how you’re able to straddle them both—perhaps your graphic novel has the heart of Blankets by Craig Thompson but the journalistic acuity of Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe. Feel free to reference big authors when explaining the writing style or context, but don’t comp huge successes directly. You’re not the next Junot Díaz, but your voice might break genre barriers like Díaz. Your book won’t be the next Harry Potter, but it might be in conversation with Harry Potter—maybe it’s another magical school story, but this time with a sociopolitical angle and a murder mystery.

It’s also important to contextualize yourself. Why are you writing this story? The reason it matters to you might very well be the reason it matters to others. Perhaps you’re breaking into a traditionally male-dominated genre, or you’re applying a queer lens to a historically straightwashed history. What drove you to write your book might drive others to take a chance on it. Your certainty on its importance is key to selling the experience. This brings me neatly to my final point:

The most important part of any pitch is confidence. Your pitch might not be in person—you could read it from a piece of paper, you might be sending it as an email or entering it on Submittable. However you shoot your shot, stand your ground firmly. Keep in mind that we all need to work together, but if you don’t sound like you’d want to read your book, you won’t convince anyone else to.

You have time to refine your presentation. Not every pitch will be perfect for every listener, so learn how to personalize your spiel to your audience and let them know that you’ve done your research. Take the time to practice, get feedback from your peers, and revise as needed. Good luck!

open book with illustrated drawing

Queer Young Adult Graphic Novel Recommendations

Graphic novels are some of my favorite books to read. These novels are always great to pick up when looking for something fun to distract the mind. The publishing industry is currently moving toward having more representation in the market for all readers to identify with, so I decided to share four of my favorite young adult graphic novels that celebrate queer characters and stories. This is a list of some of the best graphic novels on the market with queer representation that you will not be able to put down!

Heartstopper by Alice Oseman

Heartstopper is an adorable YA romance that follows the story of Charlie and Nick, two British teenagers navigating life in high school. Nick and Charlie form a beautiful friendship after Charlie joins the high school rugby team and plays alongside Nick. As they begin spending more time together, their friendship develops into something more. This novel explores themes such as sexual identity and mental health. I can’t stress enough how Alice Oseman’s Heartstopper is a must-read for all graphic novel lovers. The good news is that the most recent volume of Heatstopper was just released on January 4, 2022.

Fun fact: You can check out this series for free on Alice Oseman’s Webtoons page.

Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker and Wendy Xu

Mooncakes is a light-hearted and wholesome fantasy that follows Nova Huegen, a hard-of-hearing young witch who works at her grandmother’s bookshop. On the hunt for a mysterious white wolf, Nova runs into Tam Lang, her childhood crush who is also a nonbinary werewolf. In this fantastic adventure, Nova and Tam explore the magic of the world around them and the magic of falling in love. This is a must-read for lovers of witchy stories.

Fun fact: Mooncakes was published by the local Portland publisher, Oni Press.

On a Sunbeam by Tillie Walden

This sci-fi graphic novel follows the story of Mia as she joins Alma, Elliot, Jules, and Char, a crew that fixes and restores old, abandoned structures in space. After years of separation from her high school girlfriend, Grace, Mia and the gang decide to risk it all. Following two different timelines, this story explores love, loss, friendships, and betrayal. On a Sunbeam is such a beautifully illustrated novel, and the relationships the characters share are so profoundly moving that you will not be able to put it down.

Fun fact: You can read this story online on Tillie Walden’s website.

The Girl from the Sea by Molly Knox Ostertag

This heartwarming coming-of-age graphic novel follows the story of Morgan, a young girl who is struggling to hide her sexual identity in her tumultuous life. One night during a near-death experience, Morgan is mysteriously saved by Keltie. As Keltie and Morgan grow closer, they become best friends and quickly fall in love. Molly Knox Ostertag has masterfully illustrated this fantastic graphic novel that is great for readers of all ages.

These are just a couple of my favorite young adult graphic novels that celebrate queer characters. Are there any of your favorites that we might have left out? Let us know!

book recommendation covers

Five Books from Indie Presses to Gift around Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day celebrates all kinds of women and the ones they care for. What better gift to give the mother figure in your life than the power of words? Here are some recently published books to either gift or buddy-read for Mother’s Day!

  1. A Girl is A Body of Water by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi (Tin House Books)
  2. In this coming-of-age story, thirteen-year-old Kirabo wants to know who her mother is. She seeks the guidance of the local witch, Nuusta, to learn more about the woman who gave birth to her. Struggling with her own identity, Kirabo understands the importance of independence, family, and her culture.

  3. The Magical Language of Others by E. J. Kohr (Tin House Books)
  4. Told through letters between a mother and daughter, fifteen-year-old Eun Ji is left to grow up in California with her brother when her parents have to return to South Korea for work. Her mother sends years worth of letters to Eun Ji, but the letters are in Korean, which Eun Ji can’t understand or translate until years later. When she does, Eun Ji learns stories of her grandmother and her past growing up in South Korea. With the help of the generations of women before her, Eun Ji learns to accept her family, voice, and language and learns how it shapes who she is.

  5. Praise Song for My Children: New and Selected Poems by Patricia Jabbeh Wesley (Autumn House Press)
  6. This poetry collection encompasses twenty-one years of poetry by the celebrated author Patricia Jabbeh Wesley and her role as a parent, woman, wife, sister, and friend. Wesley pours out her experiences of motherhood from both African and Western experiences and shows readers the depth of love and culture using the women around her.

  7. Libertie by Kaitlyn Greenidge (Algonquin Books)
  8. Libertie Sampson feels drawn toward the life her mother has set up for her: follow in her footsteps and become a doctor to practice alongside her. But Libertie can’t help but feel more drawn to music than science. Struggling with her identity as a Black woman and as a daughter, Libertie tries to find her place in the world and her freedom within it.

  9. Brother, Sister, Mother, Explorer by Jamie Figueroa (Catapult Books)
  10. Brother and sister spend a final weekend in their childhood home after their mother’s passing. The two are forced to grapple with the history of their ancestors and the ones their family has lost, while Rufina must convince Rafa that his life is worth living.

Happy reading!


What Happens Before a Book Pubs?

The book publishing process often remains a mystery to those outside the industry. The exact process for how a book gets from one step to the next within a certain amount of time usually varies from press to press. Some people might expect that things get done relatively quickly, perhaps in a year or less. Others believe that publishers simply move on once the book is completed. For authors, it might seem like an eternity of waiting for news and working to spread the word about their book on their own. The last couple of months before a book is officially published is a very important and busy time for a publishing press.

At the average publishing house, these last few months are spent ensuring that the title gets printed, arrives at the warehouse, and that the early copies are received at the publishing house. At the same time, the marketing and publicity work continues as it has for the past several months. The specifics of what this looks like depends on several factors and varies from press to press. Some factors to consider include the resources that the press has access to, whether the author has published before, how popular the press is expecting the book to be, and many others. There may be a dedicated fanbase for an author and their upcoming title, but if the press doesn’t have many resources, the amount of marketing it gets will be lower.

Here at Ooligan, the Love, Dance, & Egg Rolls team is hard at work preparing for our pub day. The first thing we have been working on is promoting the book across our social media platforms. Each member of the team has created their own posts on various topics that are aimed at generating excitement for the book. We have had the pleasure of focusing on the representation of and aspects of Filipino culture, including food and dance. We are also keeping an eye out for any mention of the book that we were not already anticipating. We love seeing publicity for the titles that our authors have worked so hard on.

As for the rest of the press, we are encouraging everyone to like, comment, and share the posts on their personal accounts so that we can boost the content and generate more viewers. We also have other members of the press who help keep an eye out for how the book is looking online. They are all great contributors to the creation of this book.

We have been very excited to plan the launch event for this book. This event is a great way to celebrate the author and everyone’s contributions that helped bring this book into the world. We are gathering ideas and determining their feasibility in order to make this event the best it can possibly be.

The publication process varies with each publisher, and this is just a glimpse into a small portion of the process. In some cases, this process can last up to two years. Of course, Ooligan Press is a small press made up of almost entirely students, so how we are able to get our books out into the world is different. How some publishing houses like the Big 5 do it may remain a mystery.

pink and yellow balloons with smiley faces on them

Feel-Good Reads to Boost Your Mood

There’s nothing like a good book to get you out of a funk. When life gets heavy, sometimes you just need to escape from life for a while, and a book is a great way to do just that.

Here’s a list of some new releases that are sure to leave you feeling a little happier. Hopefully these books will make you laugh, give you just a little bit of hope, and allow you to forget your troubles (even if it’s only for a few hours).

  • 30 Things I Love About Myself by Radhika Sanghani

    Can you fix your life simply by choosing to love yourself? Thirty-year-old Nina decides to test the theory. She is at the lowest point in her life and has nothing left to lose. What’s the worst that could happen? She goes on a journey to find thirty things she loves about herself by her next birthday. This hilarious novel will have you thinking about starting your own self-love journey.

  • Deconstructed by Liz Talley

    When Cricket Crosby finds out about her husband’s affair, she decides to do whatever it takes to learn the truth and get revenge. Her assistant Ruby, whose goal is to become a fashion designer, decides to help Cricket with her investigation. This novel explores an unlikely friendship on a journey that will have you crying from laughter.

  • Lease on Love by Falon Ballard

    This debut novel follows down-on-her-luck Sadie Green. In a particularly low moment, Sadie attempts to find a one-night stand to dull the pain, but mixes her dating app with a roommate-finding app. This leads her to Jack Thomas’ door. She unexpectedly finds herself in love with his home and accepts his offer to stay in his spare bedroom. Of course, this is only the beginning of Sadie and Jack’s story.

  • Yinka, Where Is Your Husband? by Lizzie Damilola Blackburn

    Yinka is a smart, successful, and independent Nigerian woman. She has everything in her life figured out except when it comes to the love department—something her family never lets her forget. When her cousin gets engaged, Yinka decides it’s the perfect opportunity to find the man of her dreams to take as her date to the wedding. She knows she will succeed this time. As she begins her highly organized plan to find a man, bigger questions about identity, culture, and meaning start looming.

  • Must Love Books by Shauna Robinson

    Nora Hughes is living the path to her dreams as an editorial assistant at Parsons Press—or so she thought. After five years of being overworked and underpaid, she discovers her pay is being cut, making it impossible for her to even pay rent. She decides to take her future into her own hands by taking another position at a rival press to supplement her income and poach some of Parsons’ authors. Things quickly get complicated, making Nora question where exactly her loyalties lie.

  • The One True Me and You: A Novel by Remi K. England

    Two Events. One Weekend. Kaylee Beaumont is excited to meet all of her internet friends in person at GreatCon, as well as use this opportunity to explore her queer identity. Teagan Miller has her eyes set on the $25,000 prize of the Miss Cosmic Teen USA Pageant so that she can go off to college and be her true self, but she’d much rather be at GreatCon. When they cross paths on the first night, their connection is undeniable, but there is way too much to risk their secrets getting out, right?

Happy Reading!

woman lying on the ground reading a book

Why Adults Should Read YA Books

There is a common myth in adult literary circuits that young adult (YA) books are just for teens. Adults are old and should therefore read mature, realistic content; suffering is key, and the weight of reality should permeate every page. They also say that the prose and vocabulary of adult novels should be elevated and more complicated than in YA novels. So what could young adult literature possibly offer to sophisticated adults?


Don’t get me wrong, adult literature is great, but so is YA. Just like adult books, YA literature has something that can appeal to everyone. The genre itself is incredibly expansive, from historical fiction to contemporary literature and high fantasy. Think of YA as an umbrella term for the many sub-genres involving teens and young adults—yes, even college-age protagonists get lumped into YA. There are even books written in verse and horror stories so chilling that they shake you to your core. No matter the subject, there is bound to be an extremely well written YA book on it.

In recent years, YA books have rapidly expanded their horizons and are now one of the most diverse categories of literature. Books with BIPOC and LGBTQ+ characters have made their way to the forefront of bookshelves and are in high demand by readers. As young adults look to YA literature to broaden their understanding of the world and find comfort in characters that accurately reflect themselves, so should adults. These books play a huge role in helping people discover and relate to their own identities, as well as develop empathy and understanding for people who have different lived experiences.

The themes in YA novels are also universally relatable. Every adult was a teenager at some point, so they have gone through some kind of formative journey that has impacted their current situation. Sometimes it’s fun to revel in the nostalgia of a coming-of-age novel or relive the flutters of first love. In other cases, reading YA can be a form of escapism to experience a youth that was vastly different from their own. For those not into escapism, YA books also tackle topics that are prominent in today’s society: homophobia, gender identity, police brutality, political oppression, suicide/death, self-harm, eating disorders, etc. The difference between adult and YA novels, in this case, is that YA novels generally leave more room for hope and a light at the end of the tunnel.

If that’s not enough, adults are already exposed to young adult media in other forms. When Harry Potter exploded across the globe, teens and children weren’t the only readers. Adults were picking up the novels to read to their kids or devouring them for their own pleasure, and even if they weren’t reading the books, they probably saw the movies. Consider the popularity of the film adaption of The Hunger Games and the television adaption of Gossip Girl. Why put up a barrier against YA literature when other YA media is already consumed by adults without shame?

At the end of the day, there’s no reason adults why shouldn’t be able to enjoy a YA novel, so why not try reading one today? We highly recommend checking out the selection at Powells.

stack of eight red books with gold titles

Why You Should Read Translated Literature

The saying “traduttore, traditore” is a well-known phrase in the world of translation. However, it has a negative connotation that no dedicated translator would appreciate when it applies to their work. Translators are literary heroes who spend months, sometimes even years, sitting with chosen or assigned books and turning them into another language so that readers can be exposed to different cultures and stories.

Some readers may be intimidated when opening a translated book, they might be apprehensive regarding the content, or they might simply assume that these stories are not the same as the original story. While there might be some truth to this given the difficulty of translating one language into another, readers should trust the process of translation and not fear reading stories from other languages. Translated books transport readers not only to places far away but to places where the authors grew up, and their experiences open windows into new territories, bring up new feelings, and offer broader perspectives.

According to Wolfestone, literary translation is more than just translating one language into another—it truly is an art. A text simply cannot be translated word for word into another language and expect to reflect the original sentence. Translating requires the translator’s genuine knowledge of both the mother tongue and the target language; in addition, a translator needs to understand the culture, the authenticity, and the deeper meaning behind the words. Ideally, translators not only feel the words on the pages but also the culture behind the words, and this propels them to a level where they can truly feel what the author is trying to say. The most important part of choosing a book to translate might be the sense of personal connection. Translators must fall in love with the books they translate and feel a personal connection to the story or the author in order to pour their heart and soul into that book, not to mention the long months, or even years, it can take to translate a book.

The world of literature can be an emotional journey. Most people read to feel the emotions of their chosen books, to resonate with the authors, or to travel elsewhere in order to experience something outside of their daily lives. It is the translator’s responsibility to read the original work, feel the words travel through them, and then transport those emotions to readers. If readers feel skeptical about feeling a book’s authenticity, it is almost guaranteed that they will get more than their fair share of the original language penetrating through the translated words; the book’s inner light and aura, along with countless glimpses into other parts of the world, can provide them with experiences like no other.

Translated literature such as Greek mythologies is something most of us have experience reading without even acknowledging to ourselves that they are from another language. Reading contemporary translated literature is important and very educational. When I read, I alternate between English-language books and translated books to make sure that I am exposed to both genres. Being bilingual and fluent in reading in a third language, I speak from personal experience when I talk about translated books. The magic of words on a page brings out different feelings and emotions in every language. Monolingual people should feel comfortable and have no worries about the art of translation. Branching out and getting familiar with foreign authors is made possible only through translated books. Dive into unknown territories with gusto! Don’t be intimidated. Once you get going, they are not going to seem intimidating, I promise.

castle in a forest

The Murky Depths of Portland Produce Fantasy Gems

Dark skies, misty drizzle, and towering trees hang heavily over the treasures of fantasy in Portland. The Pacific Northwest is home to a host of fantasy authors, and our city is no exception. Here are three authors who span fantasy’s roots to fantasy’s present in this beloved genre.

Ursula K. Le Guin is the author of the Earthsea Cycle fantasy series. Although Le Guin was born in Berkeley, California, she has lived in Portland for most of her adult life and began teaching at Portland State University in 1979. Le Guin is most known for her science fiction, but she began her career writing fantasy.

The Earthsea Cycle began as a trilogy from 1968 to1972 but was then added to in 1998 and 2001 to create a total of five books. Earthsea is Le Guin’s fantasy universe that begins with A Wizard of Earthsea. The wizard in question is the young Ged, who is pushed to travel across Earthsea to be trained as a wizard. When he feels slighted by another trainee, his hubris pushes him to cast a spell well beyond his ability, which releases a shadow that haunts him. Ged is stalked by this doppelganger of his ego until he is forced to chase it down and face it. It is a wonderful fantasy story with great philosophical undertones. Ursula K. Le Guin died in 2018 as a respected champion of women, fantasy, and science fiction.

Wendy Wagner’s debut novel was Pathfinder Tales: Skinwalkers in the Pathfinder Tales series, which supports the Pathfinder gaming universe. Like Le Guin, Wagner writes a broad range of genre fiction, but fantasy, sci-fi, and horror are their favorites. Wagner’s prose is intricate and eerie, weaving a folkish feel into her magic—a perfect complement to winter reading in Portland.

Wagner also focuses on eliminating gender bias from their writing as much as possible. In an interview with Chuck Wendig of Terribleminds, Wagner recalls how hard the process can be:

When it was time to revise, my editor pointed out many, many instances of gender-biased language. I lost count of the number of times I referred to a group of fighters as “men.” In situations with a crowd, I almost never described anyone but the guys. Jendara may have been a well-rounded female character, but she was definitely a rarity in her world. I’m a woman and I believe very firmly in equality for all human beings. I was pretty ashamed to see my own work, and I’m glad I got a chance to fix it before it went out in the world. It’s all too easy to use those same old phrases without thinking about them, but as a writer, it’s my job to think hard about the world I’m making with my words. Do I want it to be the same world that’s told women they have to stay home out of sight, or do I want it to be a world where everyone can adventure, no matter their gender?

Annie Bellet is the newest of the three writers. Her first book, Justice Calling, was published in 2014 and kicked off her Twenty-Sided Sorceress series. Her genre is fantasy with a heavy gamer influence. Justice Calling introduces us to Jade Crow, a sorceress who is taking a break from magic in Idaho. Jade is forced back into spellcasting when an evil shapeshifter finds her and her friends. Bellet’s writing is fast-paced, and her world is familiar to ours. She has parlayed the Twenty-Sided Sorceress into a long-running series that is now at ten books and counting.

writer and laptop

Publishing for First-Time Authors

Most people have been taught the basics of writing: sentence structure, grammar, spelling, and how to string everything together to form a paragraph, then a page, then a chapter, and so forth. As much as we like to dog on Millennials and our social media generations for believing that they can do anything with 140+ characters, we have to admit that there is some truth to this and to the fact that our age demographics (among others) behave in such a way that we think our words are golden tickets to a better—or at least changed—life. Don’t get me wrong, I am guilty too. Even with this blog post, there is the belief that these words will matter and that someone out there will be changed, inspired, or at least influenced in some way by my words. But does that mean that anyone can write a book? The short answer is yes. Does that mean everyone should? That answer is a bit more nuanced.

Let’s imagine that you’ve written what you believe to be the next Great American Novel. Now what? How does one go about publishing their first masterpiece? This post will give you a few tips, tricks, and resources to help you get your book baby into the right hands and onto the shelves. As anyone familiar with publishing will tell you, publishing itself is a process: it starts with acquiring the book, performing a developmental edit and then several copyedits, designing the cover, formatting the interior design, marketing the book, planning the book launch and related events, and so on. Most of this is handled by the publisher, but any reasonable publisher will keep the author well-involved. The first step—and the most vital—is to get your book acquired by a publisher.

There are a few ways an author can go about getting their manuscript acquired. One option is to self-publish with a program like Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing. Unless you have the right connections and are willing to put a ton of time and money into your own marketing, self-publishing is not a recommended route. Another option would be to submit your book to a hybrid publisher like Acorn Publishing. Acorn Publishing functions like a traditional publisher while giving you the control you find with self-publishing. This route gives you the best of both worlds, however, there are not many hybrid publishers out there, so it might be hard to get picked up by them. Another option is to try traditional publishing. Most publishing houses or presses follow the traditional publishing model, as laid out above. They take care of most of the production and marketing and allow you to help make the decisions.

If you choose to publish your book using any option besides self-publishing, your next challenge is to find the right publisher—one that fits your genre and style of writing, your subject matter, and helps your vision of your book become a reality. Websites like Duotrope, Writer’s Digest, or even Poets & Writers can help point you in the right direction. Duotrope even helps you search by genre, writing medium, and free or paid submissions. You could also try connecting with a literary agent to help connect you with the right publisher. One perk of having an agent is that they can help fine-tune your manuscript and vet potential publishers and offers to ensure that you’re getting the right fit. Agents act as advocates for you and your book, so there are definite benefits to having one on your side throughout the publishing process. Duotrope can also help connect authors with potential agents. Most agents and publishers will require your manuscript, a proposal, or a query letter—if not all three—in order to determine if your book is the right fit for them. It is advised that you take time to look over the submission requirements for any publisher that you would like to submit to in order to ensure that your book meets their requirements. Doing so will save both you and the publisher valuable time in making sure your book gets into the right hands, on the right shelves, and into the hands of the right readers.

judgment scale and gavel

Understanding Copyright Law

Copyright law can be confusing. Self-published authors often find themselves vulnerable when it comes to understanding how and when copyright works. To help combat this lack of knowledge, this quick guide—which should not be mistaken for legal advice—can help authors understand the basics of copyright law. So, what is fair use, that “©” sign, and how do you register for copyright?

Fair Use

There is a lot that falls under “fair use.” As written in the seventh edition of Understanding Copyright Law by Marshall A. Leaffer, it is “a privilege in others than the owner of a copyright to use the copyrighted material in a reasonable manner without consent, notwithstanding the monopoly granted to the owner.” Think of it as a roundabout way through copyright without breaking the rules.

The Copyright Act controls fair use. There are four major factors that judges take into account when dealing with fair use, and you should keep in mind that a judge has a lot of freedom in ruling and that each factor is not equal to all others. The four major factors are the purpose and character of the use, the nature of the copyrighted work, the amount or substantiality of the portion used, and the effect of the use on the potential market for or value of the work.

The “©” Sign

The copyright symbol is the circled “C” that you might find on different books or websites. For works published before March 1, 1989, the use of this sign was necessary in order to have your work protected by law. In today’s world, a work can still have copyright protection without the iconic sign, but that doesn’t mean that the copyright sign is no longer important. The symbol ensures protection against “innocent infringement” or infringement that was accidental by ensuring that the reader knows this work is protected by copyright. For books, it is important to ensure copyright notice by taking the following steps:

  1. Use the copyright symbol or write “Copyright”
  2. Note the year of publication
  3. Write the name of the copyright holder

Registering for Copyright

Registering a copyright is important. Although anything that has been written on paper, recorded digitally, or typed electronically is under copyright protection, it is helpful to have a verifiable record of the content under copyright, and it is vital in terms of legal claims, infringement, and plagiarism. Registering for copyright takes place with the US Copyright Office, and there are three items that are needed in order to register a copyright claim:

  1. A completed application form
  2. A copy of the work being registered
  3. The filing fee

A basic copyright for literary works can be done online, but there is also the option to register for copyright by mail. It can take anywhere from three to nine months to receive a certificate of registration. Your copyright is in place from the moment you create your work, but going through the registration process ensures that your work is legally protected.