My name is Susan, and I am a publishing lawyer.
The Job of Which We Do Not Speak is the practice of law, specifically transactional law, and my practice includes intellectual property, business (formation and transactions), contracts, and sometimes probate. The lion’s share of my practice is intellectual property – specifically publishing and related contracts, transactions, copyrights, and trademarks.
When I started this blog I didn’t disclose my profession, mostly to keep a division between my writing and other work. I don’t want the publishers, agents, writers, and editors I represent to feel any obligation to look upon me a writer – in fact, I prefer it that way. My commitment to my clients’ needs comes first, and that includes a duty to keep from imposing upon them or creating an awkward situation. As between their interests and mine, theirs must always take first place, and refraining from comment on my day job seemed a reasonable way to ensure proper separation.
That said, I’m about to be outed on Twitter and elsewhere, so announcing it here doesn’t necessarily cause any harm. It also enables a wider range of “Writing Wednesday” posts, since I can now talk about legal issues with a different kind of credibility.
Back to the “outing.”
The Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers’ 2011 Colorado Gold Conference Brochure is now available on the Internet (and by mail, to those of us on the list). My name (and bio) are on the presenter list, since I’m teaching a Master’s Class on contracts and a Saturday afternoon seminar on copyright. That fact could escape notice, but since I strongly support RMFW and the Colorado Gold conference (and did long before they asked me to speak) and intend to promote both here on the blog, it seemed appropriate to disclose my connection to the group and the event. Which, of course, required me to tell on myself.
I’ve been doing it since I was two and stole a cookie. Old habits die hard.
I’ve also discovered a lot of legal topics I’d like to start posting about, and I either needed to “out myself” or start a second blog and let’s face it, I’m much too lazy to do this twice a day. Out of the shadows it is.
*Note: Don’t expect me to give details about The Day Job We Do Not Rarely Mention – client matters (and names) are strictly off limits, though intellectual property law is now completely fair game. (Note: unlike agents, who often list their clients openly on their websites, and have good reason to do so, I do not and will not disclose my clients’ names or identifying details. Feel free to ask other kinds of questions in the comments or by email, though, and I’ll try to answer them as and if I can.)
** Also Note: if you happen to be a client and mention that fact in the comments, I’m going to let it stay. Be aware that this is my personal blog, not a work one, and I let the snarks run a little more freely here than they do in the office. Consider yourselves duly warned.