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I even drove onto the flight line. I expected to be surrounded by MPs any second, but nothing. A few physical aspects of the base are fabricated for the novel, but I drew as much as possible from my observations. While there, I also took a civilian helicopter tour of the entire island; I drove from one end of Oahu to the other several times; I ate at the roadside stands; I went to a luau, which is sort of strange, and sad, to do by yourself; I encountered Sacred Falls, and read up on its history, and found it too rich not to include in a revision.

In my process of writing, I saw this book first as a film that played out in my mind. I knew I wanted Chase to have combat experience — which takes place for her in Iraq — and I knew I wanted Stone to perish in remote Afghanistan. All this to say that in my mind, the film version needed to show Chase today in the polar opposite of those two places. Enter lush, paradise-like Hawaii. And the exciting news is that the film rights to An Unlawful Order have already been optioned by a production company based in DC that specializes in military projects, both fiction and nonfiction. In the story Chase finds it difficult to believe that fellow Marines could be involved in a criminal conspiracy.

Were you worried that your former colleagues would react unfavourably to the storyline?

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Marines are uber protective of their image. But from personal experience, I also came to realize that, sadly, not all Marines are good people. How have Marines responded to the book? Have you had different responses from men and women? So far, the responses from all Marines have been the same, positive. She wants to be the only one people see. Somebody else pointed out that Amazon prioritizes rank for any product with trademark protection. Thanks for a lucid explanation. Are you sure this applies to books? Would you be willing to share any more info on this, or where you saw it discussed?

May 5, at 3: This whole thing is a mess, but thank you for breaking the legal side down for us in such a great way. In general, trademark registrations do not travel across national borders. But registrations in one country can be used as a basis for registering in another. Different countries have different rules and those rules change over time. In the US, you cannot register the title of a book as a trademark because the use of a word or words in a title does not constitute use in commerce as a trademark.

In other countries, this may or may not be the case. May 5, at 4: Jasper published a book and gave it the same name, similar bookcover font, and a similar bookcover image could it even be the same model? Assuming that is true, then Ms. Hopkins should have considered suing Jasper for copyright infringement or unfair competition, not tried to literally remove a word from the lexicon of romance authors.

Browse through Amazon sometime, and see how many books in a certain genre share the same base image, with differences in colour, additional images and placing. Even my own books, which I flatter myself are fairly unique in both title and content, use stock images on the cover. There is a stock image batch of a woman in a red latex jumpsuit and a motorcycle helmet which is VERY popular for a certain genre of sci-fi. The author in question has also alleged plagiarism of story elements character names and identities which she believes rise to the level of copyright infringement.

May 7, at 3: Furthermore, each subgenre of romance has its own look. I write shifters and our cover composition tends to include the same elements. There are only so many romantic stock images out there. You see the same ones all over the place. Hopkins is not a real author, as we define the word. Which we fight against weekly anyway. May 5, at 6: We all agree it would be amusing for him to contact Amazon about it though. I love how thorough your article is and have shared it on multiple postings and groups.

Thank you for taking your time to share your knowledge. When I got my trademark on a descriptive phrase, I had to go on the supplemental register for 5 years until I could show it had developed a distinctive meaning.

Also, there were clearly many other books with the word Cocky in the title. Did no one do their jobs and check? SHAME on the people in the trademark office. They are equally to blame as this trademark troll. This should not stand. However, if registering a trademark for a series of books worked the way she alleges it does by causing a single book incorporating the trademark in its title to infringe the mark then all anyone would have to do to get around the no-registering-titles rule is do exactly what she did.

Interview: An Unlawful Order author, Carver Greene

Further, I would argue that the term is descriptive when it comes to romance books: The word is already descriptive in the relevant market: Merely registering a common word for a specific good or service does NOT mean that others cannot continue to use that word in the course of normal events. These principles as a defensive measure, if sued or threatened, should prove sufficient to overcome any claims of exclusivity on the part of this author.

Could not agree more, although of course the process could be the punishment in this case, since she has capital and a high-powered trademark attorney and many of her competitors do not. I think that the reports of her using copyright takedown notices were in error: I did talk to an author who actually received a notice and it was a trademark notice. Amazon, as you probably know, has a trademark takedown system that is bru… I mean, extremely efficient.

If she does this to many more authors she will have zero competition, which is what she wants from the way she is acting. May 7, at 5: This could subject an attorney to legal claims and lawsuits against them with significant potential damages. No, I actually believe this author is doing this on her own, without the slightest understanding of what her actual rights are in the mark. Thank you for this wonderful breakdown.

I wonder whether the simple question of the venue in which the substance of the alleged infringement occurred would have her gallivanting from court to court across all 50 states if she wanted to take on a hundred trademark fights. Anyways, thanks again for taking the time to lay all this stuff out in really straightforward language. As someone who has managed libraries of works and intellectual properties for nearly 40 years, this is an excellent post. I have a question regarding the other authors whom had their books published before Faleena.

I have to say I am a on her Facebook page but am neutral.

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I, however, have worked in a law firm so the law aspect does fascinate me. If, those books were published before hers would they still give up the rights to their books and would it be in their best interest to Trademark their work too? I wish I had you as a prof. It was a well written article!

Romance Author Gets Unduly Cocky Over Registered Trademark

Rights related to trademarks survive so long as the trademark is used in commerce. If the mark is no longer in use, eventually the trademark rights will be extinguished. So if using a word in the title of a book in the ordinary course of publishing could be an infringement of trademark, which is likely not the case, then the publishers of those books which predate her usage would have to have been using it when she started using it, or not long before.

I saw a cite to one book published in If it went out of print in and never came back into print, it would be difficult to argue that it could create an in-use bar to registering the trademark in This could be a subject where that also affects legal practices. May 6, at 6: As a non-legal person I was finding it really hard to understand the legal ramifications of this nasty ordeal.

So thank you so much. My day job involves accessing and enforcing trademark IPR cases. Thanks for the excellent post. I am a concerned writer and Australian. It is interesting to think that the word could have important connotations in another language for entirely different reasons. May 7, at 4: A cocky is usually the guy in charge of the farm or station large land holding used for livestock and grains. May 7, at 6: Marc, Thank you for the write up.

This whole thing is mindboggling. BTW Mark — thank you for speaking English. It really helped me to understand better the happenings. May 8, at 9: So, I did a little poking around. Something really stinks about how she does business, and it extends beyond sending her own cease-and-desist letters. Just a bit of extra info: I checked all of them on Fakespot and ReviewMeta and the results were almost the same in both sites: This does not go unnoticed.

Kingsfield asks him the first question and soon discovers he has not read the assigned material. Kingsfield throws an imaginary funeral shroud over "the late Mr. Hart", meaning he no longer exists as far as the professor is concerned. Hart comes up with a novel solution to his Kingsfield problem; he enters the classroom shrouded in a bed sheet as a ghost, bothering the professor into calling on him. Hart gives a good answer, earning himself a reprieve. John Jay Osborn, Jr.


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Franklin Ford's father Don Porter visits the law school to interview second-year students for summer internships at his prestigious law firm, accompanied by Ford's sixteen-year-old sister. Ford goes to pieces when his father sits in on the class. Under pressure from his father, he runs for the prestigious law school council. He feels betrayed when Hart also runs and the rest of their study group unanimously back Hart.

Ford and Hart make up and, by not showing up, enable Anderson to win by default. Ford's sister is attracted to Hart, who politely rejects her. Ford's father pressures the dean and Kingsfield to give preference to his son, but Kingsfield shows the elder Ford his efforts are damaging to his son and their relationship. When Hart asks Kingsfield a question after class, he is told to find the answer for himself and present a report to Kingsfield the next morning. After Ford steals Bell's study group notes, Bell's outrage gets him and Hart barred from the library.

Hart meets a woman who turns out to be the president of Law Review , who commissions a ghostwritten report for him when he is under time pressure. Hart elects to do the work himself, which is fortunate, as he is ordered by Kingsfield to give his report orally to the entire class. Logan gets arrested for encouraging girls school students to protest, but is released the next morning after Kingsfield speaks privately with the judge.


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Hart writes his parents a letter, confiding he thinks he is "going to be alright". Two drunken students—Sam Pray, a third-year law student, and Fitch, a dental-school student—break into the law school's dispensary during a dorm party.

In pursuit of Fitch's affections, Anderson follows and is arrested at the scene. He faces a disciplinary hearing, chaired by Kingsfield, and possible expulsion. Anderson talks Hart into acting as his defense counsel. Fitch confesses, clearing Anderson. As volunteers in a prison internship help program, Logan and Hart represent a political activist in an upcoming hearing. Logan, herself an activist, gets fooled by his seemingly sincere manner. While dating a girl who appears to be the perfect match, Hart learns her father is wealthy, old-fashioned, and protective.

Hart discovers the father was a mob lawyer after he is murdered. Clayton finds his photographic memory is not enough in Kingsfield's class. The professor humiliates him in front of his fellow students when he is unable to analyze a case he has memorized. The pressure threatens his marriage and causes him to go on a drinking binge.

Hart brings Clayton into the empty classroom at night, playing the part of Kingsfield and coaching him. The janitor calls Kingsfield in to see what is going on, but upon observing the proceedings, Kingsfield says, "Oh, they're just stretching. Kim Cattrall played Clayton's wife.

Bell believes that his unflattering seating chart picture is the reason that he gets singled out in class and plots to change it without permission, with Hart's reluctant help. They sneak into Kingsfield's office late on a Friday night, but the professor's unexpected appearance results in them hiding and being inadvertently locked in a closet for the entire weekend. They manage to sneak out on Monday morning undetected, but in Bell's haste in substituting a new photo during their escape, he puts it in upside down. Raymond Livingston Glynn Turman is a highly disciplined black student, a West Point alumnus, who is teamed with his complete opposite, the slobbish Bell, as they go up against Hart and Logan in the final of the school's annual moot court contest.

The long hours spent working together take an emotional toll. Hart becomes infatuated with Logan, while Bell is so fed up with being pushed incessantly by Livingston that he resigns from the competition. Livingston persuades Bell to change his mind. Hart falls for a young woman who is surprisingly familiar with contract law and hostile to the law students who study it.

When Logan questions a visiting school alumnus, the liberal Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Alan Napier , why he has never hired a female law clerk in his 30 years on the bench, she starts a controversy that gets out of hand, as women's rights organizations get involved. Jenny, Hart's old high school girlfriend, leaves her husband and shows up on his doorstep.

He asks Bell to help keep an eye on her when he and his study group are given a challenging assignment by Kingsfield; Bell quickly falls in love with her. A struggling Jonathan is so desperate to pass Kingsfield's midterm, he hires someone to steal a copy of the test. He tricks the rest of his study group into believing that it is an old Kingsfield exam they can practice on, making them unwitting accessories to his cheating.

Anderson develops a gambling problem which interferes with his studies. His friends help him out, in class and financially, whether he wants it or not.

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A student in a wheelchair is invited to join Hart's study group. He takes advantage of Bell and Ford, tries to seduce Logan, and competes for a scholarship that Hart is after, even though he does not need the money.

A black woman Denise Nicholas feels insecure and angry because she was accepted to law school through the Affirmative Action program. At Kingsfield's request, Hart reluctantly becomes the hostile woman's tutor. An influential white alumnus, his son having been rejected despite having better grades than the woman, does his best to change the government's stance on Affirmative Action.

Kingsfield hires Hart to help his assistant on an important appellate case. The assistant, much sought after and soon to graduate, dumps most of the work on Hart so he can go to job interviews. When Kingsfield finds out, he fires the assistant, leaving Hart to carry the burden alone. When Logan spurns the improper advances of a respected law professor Robert Reed , she is surprised to see the result is a low grade on a test. However, Kingsfield, head of the disciplinary committee, dismisses her complaint because she has no proof.

Logan's friends seek out other victims to corroborate her claims. Kingsfield has his students form groups to argue both sides of a case of their choice. When Hart's study group selects a case that the professor lost early in his career, they start to question his ethics after they learn that he did not file what appears to them to be a routine appeal.

Even Hart has his doubts after a now-prominent attorney who assisted Kingsfield on the case refuses to shed light on the matter. It looks like Ernie's Tavern, a beloved student hangout, is headed for demolition to make way for a university parking lot, unless Hart can find a way to legally stop it. When he goes to Kingsfield for advice, he discovers that his professor is the counsel for the university. Hart falls in love with a Russian gymnast whose team is touring the United States. When it is discovered that she snuck out to spend time with Hart in his dorm room, he is suspended from classes for a month and she is kicked off the team.

A law professor Pernell Roberts who is teaching Hart's class in Kingsfield's absence tries to address this sticky situation. Kingsfield's annual scavenger hunt is much tougher than usual. The students have only three days to answer at least 75 of fiendishly difficult legal questions in order to pass.

It soon becomes clear that this is an impossible task. With Kingsfield stating explicitly that there are no rules, study groups sabotage each other's efforts, hiding or keeping needed reference texts.