I am in the process of writing a novel.I...

Asked by Anonymous on 27-04-2023 14:40:36
Question posted in the Intellectual Property Law category relating to KwaZulu-Natal

I am in the process of writing a novel.

I have been working on this novel for the last 6 years (various rewrites and delays) and I started writing with the help of a co-author who helped come up with various characters, story beats and plot points.

She has in recent years become distant and despite my various attempts to keep her involved in the project, she continues to show a consistent lack of interest, even being so careless as to lose her copy of the whole second draft.

I have done all of the work on it for the last 4 years, beginning the fourth draft and her last words to me on the subject were: "I'm too busy, do whatever you want with it."

Regardless, she still insists on having her name attached to it and getting a share of any proceeds and threatened me with legal action if I tried to remove her name from it.

Am I morally obligated to keep her name as co-author?

If so, what would a reasonable share percentage for her be?

Considering her lack of interest, lack of work contributed and seeming carelessness about the project, my instinct says 20% is more than reasonable, but I am not a lawyer.

Any advice would be appreciated.

Sincerest thanks, James Collett. 

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