Writing Books/names


1. I am writing a true story of events that happen to me. Can I use fictitious names that sound like the true names in my book?  2. Can I forgo the companies name and use a job description in place of the company's name?          3. Can I use my real name as author and character in my book and change all other names and company names?          4.If what I write is true and have documents to prove what I write is true, do i still have to use fictitious names in my book?
5. What can I do to protect myself from lawsuits but yet write truthfully about the subject matter?          6. You wrote,"If you want to market it as fiction but based on a true story and real people," can you provide a notice that can be placed in the front of the book

Thank you,

1. Yes, you can create fictitious names that sound like their real names. It's done all the time.

2. Yes, you can forgo companies names and use job descriptions instead, and if in a situation in a chapter that a company name is needed, simply create a fictitious company name.

3. Yes, you can of course use your true name as the author, or choose to use a pen name- either one. If you want to use your real name in the book as a character- you will open yourself up to possible liable by those individuals in your book, even though you changed their names, they can prove the connection in a court of law for liable, slander, defamation of character, and so forth. It might be wise to use a fictitious name to prevent any possible liabilities.

4. Even if you have documentation to prove all facts of the book is true- you are still opening yourself up to a liable suit.

5. If you want protection against liable, yet write a true story, consult a literary attorney for his or her advice and recommendation. This is the best possible source to ensure you are on the right track as to what you can and cannot safely do.

6. If you market it as fiction- then do place a disclaimer in the front of the book stating the names have been changed to protect the innocent, and any actual similarities are not to be considered actual due to the book being fictionalized for literary entertainment purposes.

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Jannie Balliett


I am a published writer, Chief Editor and own A1 Editorial Service. I teach writing, specializing in novel writing, and creative writing. I can answer most any question concerning writing a book, plot and characterization, tighten the prose, and the editing process, and help advise with publishing and the requirements of obtaining a literary agent.


I'm a published writer, freelancer, and Chief Editor and own A1 Editorial Service. I teach writing for my two Online writer workshops.

Sisters In Crime Internet Chapter, The Short Mystery Fiction Society, and Brazos Writers Group.

Writers Post Journal magazine, May 2006 issue, Augusr 2006 issue, Nov/December 2006 issue and soon in 2008, On A Whim, flash fiction anthology, offered in Barnes & Nobles and Amazon.

Some college, creative writing, fiction writing

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I have numerous clients using my service through my editorial service and numerous members in my Online writer workshops.

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