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13610Re: [mythsoc] Tolkien Centenary Conference Proceedings

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  • Wayne G. Hammond
    Jan 4, 2005
      Joan wrote:

      >The Tolkien Society told us that some of the authors signed contracts
      >specifying that the Proceedings would be printed once only. However, no one
      >ever produced a contract for me to examine, and some of the authors reported
      >that they could not recall signing any contract.

      Christina has found in our files a letter that _Proceedings_ co-editor and
      Conference co-chair Pat Reynolds wrote on 14 August 1992 to those intending
      to present papers at the Centenary Conference. This stated that the
      Conference Committee had long planned to publish all of the papers in more
      than one volume of _Proceedings_ (as was then thought, rather than one
      thicker volume) "as part of the series of both _Mallorn_ and _Mythlore_".
      At that time there was also the possibility that some of the papers "on a
      specific theme" might appear in a volume "published by a major British
      publishing house" (this fell through). But it was quite properly left to
      the individual presenter's wishes where his or her paper might appear, and
      the recipient of the letter thus was asked to choose from a list of
      options, with order of preference indicated if more than one option was chosen:

      I would like my paper to be considered for the themed volume.

      I would like my paper to be included in the _Proceedings_.

      I would like my paper to be forwarded to the editor of _Mallorn_ for

      I would like my paper to be forwarded to the editor of _Mythlore_ for

      I prefer to submit my paper elsewhere/not to submit my paper for
      publication at all.

      And after these was a blank to fill in "titles of foreign-language
      publications where I may submit my paper".

      This was all the "contract" that was sent out, except for a two-page "notes
      for contributors" which included the statement: "The copyright of each
      paper will remain with its author. The author's right to be associated with
      his or her work will be upheld. These right[s] apply similar to artists and
      photographers." If I recall correctly, the list of options was, at least in
      small part, in response to my huffing and puffing that the editor of
      _Mythlore_ did not, by any means, have an automatic right to publish any of
      the papers just because the conference counted as a Mythcon (any more than
      he did for papers at ordinary Mythcons, as he had been claiming), not
      without written permission. It was also, I believe, set out this way
      because a handful of presenters had already said that they did not want
      their papers to appear in _Mythlore_ (that is, in an individual issue,
      never mind that the _Proceedings_ counts as _Mythlore_ 80), for personal
      reasons having to do with its editor.

      There was certainly nothing in these materials, or in anything else the
      presenters received, which stated that the _Proceedings_ could be printed
      only once. It may be, however, that some of the individual authors
      specified this privately as a condition of publication, or it was specified
      as a condition of permission to republish one or more of the essays that
      had already appeared in print prior to the conference, or it was a
      condition applied by the Tolkien Estate as part of their omnibus permission
      which covered quotations from Tolkien's works.

      Wayne Hammond
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