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I am writing a book that is based on how I met my husband, our life together (trials and tribulations) and the beginning, middle and end of our marriage. I talk about my ex husband's childhood, teenage years and his family. I do not use any quotes, I have used ficticious names and states of where we lived. Is my book a law suit waiting to happen?

Hi Danelle,

In general terms you should have no problems as long as the physical descriptions of people are not instantly recognisable. There was one case a few years ago when a Senator won a court battle because his "freckled hands" were a distinguishing feature.

However, you editor and publisher will certainly cast a legal eye over your manuscript before publication.

All the best,

Sandy McCutcheon

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Sandy McCutcheon


Author of 22 plays, 12 bestselling thrillers, a memoir and children's fiction.I can work with people on the process of writing, what to expect and ask for from an editor. How to work with the publisher`s marketing and publicity people. And how to survive book launches and publicity tours!


Published author of 22 plays, 12 bestselling thrillers, a young adult and three non-fiction titles. Visit his Moroccan blog at for a look at his blogging work.

St Andrews, Helsinki University and other institutions. Adult Educator of the Year Award, Australia

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