Excellent advice from Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman is so absolutely spot on with this:
Writers put off making wills (well, human beings put off making wills, and most writers are probably human beings). Some of us think it's self-aggrandising or foolish to pretend that anyone would be interested in their books or creations after they're dead. Others secretly believe we're going to live forever and that making a will would mean letting Death in a crack.

Others make wills, but don't think to take into account what happens to our literary estate as a separate thing from the disposition of our second-best beds, which means unqualified or uninterested relatives can find themselves in control of everything the author's written. Some of us are just cheap.

He's done a good deed by posting this.

Get a will. It lets you see that your property, your money and your young children are distributed, cared for or disposed of according to your wishes and not the wishes of the court.

Insert or attach this codicil to the will which specifies the disposition of your creative works and derivative works arising from them. Or take it to a lawyer and have something comparable drawn up.

I have a will. Do you?

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3 comments:

  1. How terribly grown up and responsible. I think I'll have to down a shot of whiskey before work to restore the maturity/immaturity balance required to make it through the day.

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  2. This has been incredibly useful to me. Despite training as a lawyer, the bit of my own will that was stumping me was precisely this about what to do with your literary work!

    So today I grabbed the PDF, and with a little work to adapt it to my own needs, and British law, I think I may have something workable.

    Of course, this means I can't die until I do something to make that part of the will worthwhile. Hey, if I do nothing, does that make me immortal?

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  3. I got a will more than ten years ago - the usual kind that settles the disposition of physical and financial assets of my estate.

    Now, I need to attach this rider to it, so as to cover the disposition of my vast body of intellectual assets.

    Well, actually, I'm assuming it'll be vast by the time I die. Now, it's just kind of half-vast.

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