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I'm writing a non-fiction book for children on a technical subject, such as cellphones. I feel that it should include photos and diagrams. Some of the photos should be generic (e.g. a cellphone tower), and some specific (model 123, manufactured by XYZ Corp.). I will also mention well-known companies (IBM) and organizations (the American Standards Institute). A typical diagram would be of a signal passing between towers.
How do I indicate the need for a photo or diagram in my ms?
Do I have to supply them or let the publisher get them? Will the publisher take care of getting permissions? What about trademarks and copyrights? What about getting an expert to review the work? In other words, can I just send in my ms and let them do the rest?
These are a lot of questions. If you don't have the time to answer, do you know of a book that addresses these issues?
Larry Kayser  

Hello Larry!

I think older children 10-16 would enjoy such a book. Good idea, guy!

In your MS, just type a line in parens, e.g. ("Insert photo/diagram of a signal passing between towers)." It is quite likely that some discussion will pass between you and your publisher about this matter before a format is decided upon; more likely the publishers will decide whether the book needs photos, etc. I believe publishers have access to many "stock" photos and will probably know someone who can do the line drawings or charts.

You certainly do not need permission to mention IBM or any other company or organization - what's better than free publicity? You can be sure they won't object, unless you quote them at length without giving credit. You are also not allowed to appropriate their logo or any other of the symbols associated only with IBM and use it/them for your own purposes - to symbolize your own business, for example. Other than that, you needn't worry about copyright, patents or trademarks.

I hope this has helped. If it has, a nice rating would be appreciated. I am proud of my "straight 10" record over nearly 140 questions. And good luck with your book.

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Susan Rand


I can answer questions about the elements of fiction and non-fiction writing: how to get started, writing techniques, re-writing, etc. I will NOT write for you, do critiques except from my website at, or give you ideas. I will not answer home-or-schoolwork questions in any category. If English is your second language, please say so, and I will make an exception. Please submit no more than one or two questions at once, as I tend to go into detail in my answers.


I wrote my first book in 1957 and have been writing and studying writing since. I have a BA in Written Communications, and have taught writing both privately and through adult education for 15 years. Have also edited (fiction books) for an online publisher and edited/wrote more than 100 articles for a teen sex education site. Currently writing web content and mentoring beginning writers.

BA degree in Written Communication

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