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Third Art Piece Artist Announcement!

We’ve got a signed contract and formal permission from the artist to share who will be doing the third piece! We commissioned a third work when we reached the $15,500 stretch goal – the third piece will be included in the e-book, produced as a glossy 5″ x 8″ image and included with every print book, and backers at levels 3, 4, and 5 will get an 8″ x 10″ art print of the piece as well!

Joshua Beeking will be producing this piece! He sent us this biography to use:

I’m Joshua Beeking, an illustrator from Québec City that works in both  traditional and digital medias. I have been working on sharpening my  skills for over 10 years. I received formal education at Quebec’s  O’Sullivan College, where I earned a diploma in 2D/3D Animation and Rendering in 2012. I won first place at the UQAM digital creation contest in 2011 for best character designs. I’m currently a full time freelance artist with more than 200  commissions completed over the years, and aim to share my little touch  of creativity with the world!

Links: Instagram | Patreon | Twitter

Joshua will be producing an undersea scene for this, since we’ve got a few stories that involve the ocean, beach, and/or merpeople! We’ve given him a high degree of creative license, and we don’t have a sketch yet, so I can’t share a progress piece, but we can share underwater works he’s done before, such as this one (there are some others, but some are not safe for work, so we’ll hold off. <3 )

With Joshua’s mastery of line work and beautiful use of light, we’re thrilled to have him to create this piece for Add Magic to Taste!

(and, teaser – he’s also a contributor to our second anthology, already in the works – it’s called And Seek (Not) to Alter Me – Queer Fanworks Inspired by Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing” and we anticipate launching a KS for it basically as soon as we’re finished with fulfillment for this one, so stay tuned – there’s lots more queer to come from Duck Prints Press! 😀 )

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Announcing: The Authors and Artists Contributing to “And Seek (Not) to Alter Me!”

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We are thrilled to announce the authors and who will be contributing to And Seek (Not) to Alter Me! (Though we may yet add an artist or three…)

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Artists

Miss Aceriee

Hi! I’m Aceriee and I draw sometimes. I’ve been drawing all my life, but after falling into the supernatural fandom in 2014 I’ve mostly focused on fanart.

Links: Instagram | Tumblr | Twitter

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Cris Alborja

I’m an illustration and comic artist from Spain. I’ve got a nursing degree, but I decided to pursue my passion. I have studied Illustration at EASD Pablo Picasso in A Coruña and comics at O Garaxe Hermético in Pontevedra. I have done cover art for an anthology called Infiniteca by Retranca Editorial and comics for Altar Mutante, Nai dos Desterrados, and Abraxas en Cuarentena fanzines, as well as in Gaspariño 21 by Retranca Editorial.

Link: Instagram

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Joshua Beeking

I’m Joshua Beeking, an illustrator from Québec City that works in both traditional and digital medias. I have been working on sharpening my skills for over 10 years. I received formal education at Quebec’s O’Sullivan College, where I earned a diploma in 2D/3D Animation and Rendering in 2012. I won first place at the UQAM digital creation contest in 2011 for best character designs.

I’m currently a full time freelance artist with more than 200 commissions completed over the years, and aim to share my little touch of creativity with the world!

Links: Instagram | Patreon | Twitter

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Liz Brooks

I’m a freelance artist currently living in Michigan with my boyfriend and my dog Ringus Mingus (aka Gus). I’ve been doing freelance work for a few years now and am currently working on making a webcomic series about gay Renaissance Faire knights. In my free time, I enjoy reading, playing video games poorly, and baking.

Links: Carrd | Instagram | Tumblr | Twitter

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Amy Fincher

Amy Fincher (she/her) is a producer and artist with over a dozen years of experience in the video game and animation industries. She has contributed to various AAA and indie titles, including the Civilization, XCOM, and Skylanders series. Amy is currently working on Open Roads as Executive Producer. When the mood strikes and time allows, she teaches art classes and takes on art commissions on the side. Her hobbies include learning aerial silks, collecting aesthetically pleasing empty containers, looking at shiny rocks, and taking very long naps.

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Taylor C. Fischer

Taylor graduated from the Maryland Institute College of art in 2010. They believe that there are experiences and stories that can connect all of us with the aid of illustration and design. Their previous projects include: Dauntless, Elderscrolls Online, Sid Meier’s: Civilization, League of Legends, and Xcom

Taylor’s continues to create personal work in their free time, but also enjoys raising farm animals, horseback riding, training horses, beekeeping, and lives in their Tiny House on wheels.

Preferred pronouns are They/Them

Links: TaylorCFischer.com | Twitter

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Gio Guimarães

Giovanna, or simply Gio, she/her, is a Brazilian artist, working for a long time as illustrator, comic artist and animator. Some of her works are the comics Robocop and Green Hornet, cards for Avatar: The Last Airbender, short animations for advertising and TV shows, and art for games. Since 2016, lives in São Paulo and works for an American game company as Senior Illustrator. Besides the “official” work, she is always working in personal projects, such as independent comics, short animations, illustrations, and fandom works.

Links: Facebook (giovannabcg) | Facebook (giosdoodlesandartworks) | Instagram | Tumblr | Twitter

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Alicia Matheson

Alicia Matheson (she/her), Bi-Demisexual and Elder Millenial circa 1982! Southern California native, currently living in the Pacific Northwest; has been writing and doing digital and traditional art for decades. She also works as an author under the pen name Licie Laine.

Links: Archive of Our Own | deviantArt | Patreon | Tumblr | Twitter

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Lauren Mugford

I’ve been drawing since my mom first put a crayon in my hand as a way to help express my emotions. This resulted in bedroom walls getting covered in elaborate story-filled murals, and I haven’t really stopped since (though my choice of media has changed a bit). My pronouns are she/her, and I currently I reside in the Toronto area, trying to figure out how to make this comic-making, illustration-drawing thing work. With a strong love for narratives, my primary focus is on making fan art for whatever fandom has me most recently captivated, and trying to create my own queer, nerdy works of fiction to put out in the world.

Links: Instagram | Tumblr | Twitter

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Pimmy Oldham

A quirky queer published artist and hobby writer, mainly working in digital media for the last five years, but often drifting back into traditional media out of nostalgia for my long deserted youth.

I hobby art predominantly in the Supernatural fandom. Heller to the end of my days.

My home is in the UK, my heart is in Europe and my head is usually orbiting Pluto (she’s still a planet to me).

I usually have three or four cats vying to lie on me, my keyboard, or my graphics tab in no set order and live with them and my daughter in generally harmonious chaos.

Links: Archive of Our Own | RedBubble | Tumblr

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Meredith Pancake

I am a 30 year old artist from Indiana. After playing Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, I fell in love with the game and with digital art, and haven’t looked back since! I enjoy creating fanart for whatever show, movie, or book series has my attention at the time, ranging from LoZ to the Witcher. I’m always exploring to find new artists to emulate and learn from, and trying new techniques!

Links: Tumblr

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Magnolia Porter

Magnolia Porter, 24; I’m an illustrator and painter who enjoys figure expression, both grand and sentimental, what it means to be a creature, and exploiting my exposure to the ideas of holy and unholiness for symbolism material, especially while exploring a mixture thereof (“I’ll tell you my sins so you can sharpen your knife,” anyone?). This will be my first published art, outside of a fandom zine or two. I also dabble in creative writing, though it is not quite my breath and blood like art is. I daydream of fantasy worldbuilding, but unfortunately my troubles with plot have kept those worlds from expanding. Currently, I am in my fourth year of Artfight (go team steampunk!), I cannot stop listening to The Oh Hellos and Will Wood and the Tapeworms, and I am quite looking forward to the new Good Omens series.

Links: Tumblr (mushrooms-and-blooms) | Tumblr (roseal-marrow)

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Sunny Powell

I’m a they/them ace-spectrum trash panda with a love for political science and working hard to change the world one act of kindness at a time. I’m a graphic designer by day, a multimedia creator and writer by night, and I’ve been involved with various fandom communities for nearly twenty five years. I live in Portland, OR with my 7 year old son and two cats.

Link: SunnyPowellArt.com

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Xanthe P. Russell

I’m Xanthe, she/they, a 23 year old queer freelance artist based in the United Kingdom. I am primarily a portrait artist who specialises in using portraiture as a way of expressing my love for both the subject and art world in general. I mainly work digitally, although love to dabble in traditional art from time to time (such as pencils, paints, embroidery, etc), and am constantly looking to push the boundaries of what my art can be! I recently graduated with a BA in History of Art, and often will use artists of the past and present as inspirations for my work. My art has been featured in a few primarily online magazines, such as the Kraze and MouthingOff, along with some fan-zine and independent projects.

My work is a mix of fan art and original character designs. I have a wide range of fandoms that I’ve been involved in over the years, but one that has remained consistent (and was also what got me interested in digital art back in 2013) is the Kpop fandom. Fandoms in general have been places where I’ve met a lot of really talented and lovely people who have helped inspire and motivate me as a creative person! I also have a love for music and writing, and have written a lot of my own music and stories in my spare time. Being creative has always been a big and happy part of my life, and I love being able to share that creativity with the world!

Links: Behance | Facebook | deviantArt | Instagram | Tumblr | Twitter

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Casei Solus

Casei is a self-taught artist from Florida, USA. She is known for her impressionist fanart and her minimalist pride merch. For work, she designs and mocks up merch for clients. She doesn’t care about her pronouns.

Links: Linktree

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Rima Sweet

I am a Luxembourg/Europe-based Media Writer. My preferred pronouns are she/her. I’ve never had an art piece published before, but a small screenplay made it into my university’s 10th anniversary anthology.

Growing up, art and literature were my passion. As an absolute language nerd, I went on to study English Literature and Linguistics with a heavy focus on Shakespeare, with Sociology as a Minor. Later, I switched to a BTS (“Brevet de Technicien Supérieur”) in Media Writing, which focused more on content creation for various outlets of media, be that visual, audio, print, online, film, journalism…what have you.

Drawing and painting have always been my preferred ways of expressing myself. I was gifted my first set of coloured pencils when I was three years old. Since then, there’s practically always been some sort of drawing utensil in my hand. I love to play with lighting, and my favourite scenes to depict are heartfelt moments with much emotion. I started drawing fan art when I was a teenager, and I am still enjoying it tremendously to this day. Outside of fandom, I like to draw and paint horses, especially in movement, and landscapes. I specialise in digital art but I want to get back into watercolour and gouache.

At the moment, my main fandom is “The Untamed”, or “The Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation”. Outside of that, I enjoy Marvel movies, fantasy/YA novels, and French poetry. When I’m not working or drawing, you can catch me crocheting or preparing some kind of food, which I love to share with my long-term partner.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Tumblr | Twitter

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A. A. Weston

I’m best described as a jack of all trades but I practice art more than anything else. I am a neurodivergent and queer momma of the best kid in the world.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Instagram | Tumblr | Twitter

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Authors

Len Amin

I’m a disaster pansexual woman, and a fresh graduate with my bachelors degree but absolutely no direction! Despite that, I don’t remember a breath in which I wasn’t creating stories in my mind. Weaving together worlds has always felt like just a different way for me to understand the human condition and to connect with others on a deeper, more spiritual level, and I never want to give it up. I crave quiet, relatable tales about the connection and love between people in whatever form that takes, and how people work through the tribulations that may come about from that intimacy. I am currently residing in the Midwest of the United States with my Palestinian family, our puppy Charles, and our lovely chickens, with a particular affinity of poetry, spending time with friends, and typing away on my laptop in our local cafe.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Discord: LenScribbles#2644 | Tumblr | Twitter

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Juno Caster

Juno is a queer woman in her thirties living in France; she teaches ESL and English literature. She’s been involved in fandom, mostly through writing fanfiction, for twenty years — first on forums and privately hosted websites, then on LiveJournal and FanFiction.Net, and now on Tumblr and AO3. She’s mostly into Asian dramas these days; other interests include foreign languages, true crime, and coffee.

Links: Twitter

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Era J.M. Couts

I’ve been a writer for over 20 years.

Well, if I actually think about it carefully, it has probably been longer than that. I do remember writing a story on MS Paint when my age was still single digits. I could have used Word but Paint was funnier, it let me draw my scenes there too.

So maybe I should rephrase it: I have been a fanfic writer for over 20 years. There, that looks a bit better. I wrote a few originals too, but those never saw the light of day. They will, eventually.

I like to write about characters and their development. I like to write about feelings and struggles and how complicated life can be even when it looks so simple. I like to write epic love stories that don’t always have a happy ending. But most often they do.

I will, one day, write a dystopian series that I’ve been plotting for over a decade. One day, certainly one day.
Aside from being a writer, I’m a reader, an opinionated mind, an Aries, an immigrant, a coffee lover, and a night owl that has been forced to conform to the social norm of waking up early only to become a “Morgenmuffel.”

I am passionate, energetic, lazy, and sarcastic. I’m a CrazyCatLady in the making, a food lover that cannot cook, the Man™ my grandma wanted me to marry, and a happy soul in my own shoes.

And, above all, I am weird. I am queer. And so damn proud of it.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Tumblr

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Aria L. Deair

Aria L. Deair is an author who has been writing, and (while cursing her excessive comma usage) publishing fanfiction online for more than sixteen years. Freelance writer by day, and author every other hour that she isn’t sleeping, she spends her days courting carpal tunnel and “forgetting” to wear her wrist brace.

As a proud member of more fandoms than she can count, Aria can be found blogging about some of the writing that she is avoiding doing at arialerendeair.tumblr.com.

Like a dragon with her hoard, she can be found in her New Hampshire apartment, surrounded by notebooks (most of which are empty), half-filled mugs of tea, and some of the comfiest blankets that have ever existed. Disturb her at your own risk, especially during NaNo Season.

Links: Discord: ✨Dragon✨#5555 | Tumblr | Twitter

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Adrian Harley

Adrian Harley is an almost-lifelong North Carolinian and a fantasy fiction aficionado who didn’t start delving deep into fandom until adulthood. In an effort to reduce the number of unread books in their hoard, they have recently started reviewing books they possess at booksinmyhouse.dreamwidth.org. They are an editor of research by day and an aspiring novelist, also by day. They go to bed early. They live in Raleigh, NC, with their husband and a perfectly reasonable number of cats.

Link: Twitter

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R.L. Houck

R. L. Houck is a 40 yr old woman who uses she/her pronouns. She resides in Virginia with her wife, two dogs, and six cats. She has been writing creatively for as long as she can remember, but this anthology will be her first original publication.

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Hayley Hyde

Hayley Hyde is a chaotic neutral writer and visual artist. Having recently graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English Writings, she currently works as a freelance copywriter, while also fumbling about in her pursuit of a TV writing career. As a former writing center tutor, Hayley knows no bliss quite like tutees coming in with fiction assignments. She’s currently busy being a big ol’ lesbian in Philadelphia.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Discord: destihecker#2695 | Instagram

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Lucy K.R.

Lucy K.R. (she/her) is technically in existence. Every time she is free, she writes. Sometimes, when she is not free, she writes anyway. Therefore, she has taken it upon herself to pursue an authorial career rather than shirking responsibilities in search of the writing time she needs. She is fortunate to be joined by her enthusiastic fiancée Tomo, a loving OG family, and a lively found family as well.

Though a new name in original fiction, she boasts a couple publications in local newspaper Flagpole, and has done some writing for board and video games. Most notably, her work will be featured in the upcoming board game Mageling: Rise of the Ancient Ones. She maintains an eager following for her Final Fantasy VII fanfictions, and in the past year began writing in the Heaven Official’s Blessing universe as well to warm responses.

She comes to writing with a background in upright bass performance, a general interest in most things, and little relevant experience. She is the kind of person who enjoys learning one piece of information about everything without ever acquiring a specialty. In her written works Lucy K. enjoys exploring the fragility and endurance inherent in humanity, the effects of trauma on relationships, and the paradoxical brotherhood of confinement and freedom in society.

She would like to acknowledge that she has never written a biographical statement that did not turn out weird, beg your indulgence, and express her hope that you enjoy her work in this anthology. The people at Duck Prints Press have been a delight, and she is deeply grateful to be included.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Twitter

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Nickel J. Keep

Nickel (they/them) was born in a galaxy far, far away. No. Wait. That’s not their origin story. They currently live in Pennsylvania with two of their three partners, their two children, and a fat, lazy, chonk of a cat named Sphinx. When not writing, Nickel can be found drawing, playing video games, or running Magic: The Gathering tournaments as an L1 judge. They can frequently be found lurking in the Haven, Leverage, and Witcher fandoms.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Twitter

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M.K. Mads

M.K. Mads has been writing stories since she was seven years old. While she is most prolific in fanfiction and has works scattered among more than a dozen fandoms, she has been making strides into original fiction. Her favorite genre to read is romance. When she isn’t reading, writing, or falling headfirst into a new fandom, she can be found baking, walking, doting on her niblings, or playing Pokemon Go.

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Nova Mason

Nova Mason spent a significant portion of her childhood fantasizing about dragons, spaceships, and other worlds. She is now, allegedly, a grown-up, with two kids, and more varied interests. Dragons, spaceships, and other worlds are still pretty high in the list, though.

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Theo Neidlinger

Writer with a focus on lgbtq+ themes. They/them.

Link: Twitter

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A. Reilly

A. Reilly is an avid reader, and has been writing stories as long as they can remember. Around eight years old, they saved up their allowance one nickel and dime at a time to buy a typewriter — which they still have, although they mostly use a Mac now. Adaille joined the fanfic and fanart scene in 2018 after years in the Supernatural fandom, and has been hooked on the community ever since.

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nottesilhouette

Hi! I’m Notte (she/they). I’ve been a writer since I was 12 years old, which is when I started reading fanfiction and almost immediately felt compelled to write some, too. I started in the Percy Jackson fandom, then moved through various medias until my stories started becoming so AU they were practically my own. While I’ve never published original fiction before, I’ve been publishing fanfiction steadily over the last decade across various usernames and have published articles under my given name for multiple genres: interview, research, and more. I’ve also begun songwriting, and recently had one of my songs incorporated into a video game!

My fiction writing tends towards introspective, character-driven short stories, often laden with metaphor and double meanings. I love flowery imagery and poetic prose, and making characters suffer in the name of growth. More than that, I love using fiction as a way to connect with others: both through the text and through the process of writing. I’ve been running a fandom server for the past two years to build community and support other fanfic writers. I’ve also run two to three prompt months per year, and I’m excited to take on the beta and co-head mod role for a current zine!

When I’m not writing, I’m studying (for grad school, for a future medical school, for research work). Any time after that goes into reading as much as possible, or recently, graphic design, as I start creating graphics to enhance the quality of my events. I love talking to people who want to talk to me, and I will sleep anytime I’m presented with a soft surface to lay on (and sometimes even without). I can’t wait to share my work with you, thank you for taking the time to read it!

Links: Archive of Our Own | Tumblr (fandomsilhouette) | Tumblr (nottesilhouette)

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Veronica Sloane

Veronica Sloane has authored a novel, several short stories, some poetry, and twenty-two years worth of fanfic. She lives with one lovely spouse, one rambunctious clever child, and one sleepy cat.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Tumblr

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Theresa Tanner

Theresa Tanner (she/her): My father’s family was in newspaper journalism, and he taught me how to get to the heart of a story and how to proofread. My mom was an Army doctor, and her family included a long history of educators. I grew up to teach high school science and write stories, so I’d like to think both sides would be proud of me. When I retire from teaching, I plan to pursue writing as my second full-time career. When not teaching or writing, I enjoy playing with my cat, video games, knitting, listening to music, streaming TV, and, of course, reading. I live in West Texas now, but have lived in Maryland and Germany and traveled through much of the United States and Western Europe.

I’ve written several novels with the help of NaNoWriMo, although none are yet published. I have several hundred works on Archive of Our Own, primarily in the Supernatural and Yuri!!! on Ice fandoms. I currently also enjoy Miraculous Ladybug, Marvel Cinematic Universe, Boku no Hero Academia, Star Wars, Star Trek, Mass Effect, and The Lord of the Rings.

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K.B. Vimes

K.B. Vimes lives in West Virginia with his fiance and their six cats, four frogs, three lizards, one frog, and a number of fish. In his spare time he makes paper craft, takes long walks with his fiance, and visits state parks. He’s been writing since he was old enough to hold a pencil, and for years has told stories to anyone willing to hold still long enough to listen.

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Lyn Weaver

Lyn Weaver has been writing fanfiction for over a decade and original fiction for even longer. Her preferred genres are fantasy and horror and her preferred tropes are ‘enemies to lovers’ and anything to do with identity issues. She won’t read a story if something bad happens to the cat.

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Nicole Wilkinson

Nicole has been publishing her writing for the public since she first stumbled into fanfiction back in 2007, when a college friend introduced her to the concept through the world of Final Fantasy VIII slash fiction. Since then, it’s been a roller coaster ride straight through dozens of fandoms, eventually leading to original content published through a variety of means. She’s in her mid-thirties, uses she/her pronouns, and more recently has discovered an intense affection for playing Dungeons and Dragons.

Links: Archive of Our Own | Tumblr | WordPress

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Cat Z.Y.

Cat currently lives in California with her succulent Teddy. She published her first novel by the name of “Guardian” with the pseudonym Ann O. Nemos (after reading too much Agatha Christie) at the age of 14. Besides writer, she enjoys fiber crafts and swimming.

Link: Archive of Our Own

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Fanart and the “Right of Publicity”

As we make progress on our second anthology, And Seek (Not) to Alter Me, a collection of queer transformative works inspired by William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, we confronted the following question:

If artist contributors do works recognizable as performers in specific adaptations, does that present copyright issues?

To solve this, we did some research, and we thought we’d share the results with you all!

The use of likenesses of performers in original artwork doesn’t fall under copyright protections. Instead, in the United States, performers are protected by the right to publicity, which gives individuals the exclusive right to license the use of their identity for commercial purposes. This means that, for an image or likeness of a performer (or other public figure) to be used in a commercial context, either the performer needs to be the commercial originator (as in, they need to be the person selling the thing), or they need to have given their express permission.

However, there are two significant exceptions to this.

  1. Freedom of the press allows photographs of performers to be used without their permission if the image(s) in question are considered newsworthy. This is how paparazzi are able to sell images to tabloids, for example, and in general, legal precedent has favored unauthorized photographers over the privacy and publicity rights of performers.
  2. First amendment rights to artistic freedom allow artists to create transformative  works of artistic merit that include a likeness of the individual, even without permission, and to sell the original or reproductions of that work.

Obviously, the second of these is what is applicable in our case, and in the case of the majority of fanartists. The challenge is assessing what counts as “transformative.” As with fanfiction, this is a legal gray area, and there’s precedent both in favor of creators and against them. Different states have also interpreted their laws more loosely or more strictly, as have different countries. Therefore, there’s no hard and fast rule for “this is transformative enough” and “this isn’t.” 

Creators are on their most solid legal ground when they either:

  1. create a work that heavily modifies the appearance of the performer(s) depicted in a distinct artistic style (for example, doing an abstract work versus doing a photorealistic one) or
  2. sell only limited numbers of the work, in a way considered “artistic” instead of one seen as “for commercial gain.”

And again, these metrics are subjective – a major example in the case law, for example, involves an artist who did a work that featured the likeness of Tiger Woods – without permission – and then put it on T-Shirts which the artist sold. The court ruled in favor of the artist, deciding the work was transformative enough, even though the approach was clearly commercial. But in another instance, where an artist did a painting of the Three Stooges and put that on a shirt, the court ruled that the aim of the artwork had been primarily to create fiscal gain and commercial, and that the work wasn’t sufficiently transformative. It can truly go either way, with the vicissitudes of legalities, the views of the ruling judge, state and national and international law, and the individual aspects of each case.

In addition, a creator will be on much safer legal ground if they are careful not to violate any copyrights or trademarks. For example – if a creator uses a reference image taken by someone else, that reference image could be copyrighted. For a second example – if a creator makes a piece of artwork and then labels it as “Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter” the issue of trademark is introduced – Harry Potter and many related terms are trademarked – and could face legal challenges from multiple directions. Avoiding these pitfalls can help reduce the risk of a legal challenge.

If a creator makes a piece with a recognizable likeness on it, and sells reproductions featuring that likeness, they are potentially at risk of being sued. However, those of us in fandom know that the extent to which most celebrities pursue their right to sue people is limited. Consider how many shirts are up on sites like Redbubble with art featuring recognizable images of main characters from popular franchises. Theoretically, any of these individuals could be sued, but in practice, few have been sent cease-and-desists, much less actively taken to court. Because these individuals have chosen not to enforce their right to publicity across the board, they’re also in a weak position to start enforcing it – when a right such as right of publicity isn’t consistently enforced, applying it to specific cases can become difficult for celebrities (in a similar way to how trademarks can lapse into the public domain if a trademark holder doesn’t vigorously defend their trademark, which is how some brand names have legally entered the vernacular even though they’re technically trademarked). 

Performers are more likely to pursue legal action if the work in question damages their “brand” – for example, if it’s derogatory – or if the work in question is to be widely distributed for extensive profit (profit the performer receives no amount of, because they haven’t been involved). They’re also most likely to win a legal case if they can prove damage has been done to them – as in, if the work(s) in question have cost them jobs, opportunities, money, etc.

When considering whether to create a work that includes a likeness of a public figure, a creator should therefore consider:

  1. Do they have the permission of the public figure in question?
  2. Does the public figure have a history of pursuing legal action against creators who use their likeness?
  3. How widespread will sales of this work be, and how profitable?
  4. Is the work insulting or derogatory toward the public figure?
  5. Is the work being produced and sold in a state or country that have “right to publicity” laws?
  6. On the off chance they choose to sue, is the creator able to protect themselves?

In conclusion: there are real risks, but they are minimal for creators in the United States. If you have concerns, make sure you research intellectual property law for your area, contact an intellectual property lawyer, and/or research the celebrity you are creating artwork of to see if they have a history of vigorously protecting their rights. When in doubt, it’s safer to opt not to sell the work in question.

From the point of view of the anthology we’re working on, we’ll be advising our artists to keep in mind the “significantly transformative” aspect, both as regards “right to publicity” and copyright of reference images, and try to avoid direct representations of living actors who have portrayed these roles – because Duck Prints Press operates under the laws of the state of New York, and in New York, “right to publicity” rights end upon the death of the person in question. A photo-realistic image of a performer playing a specific role would likely be a no-go, if that performer is still alive, but otherwise – especially considering the positive light our work will portray performers in, the transformative nature of our project, and our projected scale of sales (not more than in the hundreds, we expect) – we don’t predict having any issues, even though technically we could be sued if we use a recognizable likeness of a living performer.

For those coming at this issue without our specific interests – make sure you do your research, understand your rights and the rights of the performer/celebrity, be aware that you could potentially be vulnerable, though the odds are low, and consider speaking to a lawyer if you have concerns.

Good luck, and happy creating – and selling those creations!!

DISCLAIMER 1: We are not lawyers. Nothing in this post is intended as, nor should it be interpreted as, legal advice. This post is for general information purposes, and may not be the most up-to-date information or the most relevant to your individual circumstances. If you have questions about intellectual property law, your best bet is always to consult an intellectual property lawyer.

DISCLAIMER 2: Duck Prints Press LLC is incorporated in the state of New York in the United States, and operates under the laws of the state and country. Creators in other states and other countries should supplement this information with research specific to their location. This website lists information state-by-state.

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Only Three Days Left to Apply!

Announcing: Our First Call for Artists!

Duck Prints Press LLCis thrilled to announce we are planning our second anthology, a collection of works inspired by William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing! This anthology will feature both artwork and fiction, and will be similar in structure to a zine – except that, unlike a zine, we’ll be paying all contributors!

So, fanartists – are you interested in getting paid to imagine a queer version of Much Ado About Nothing?

We’d love to have you!

This post is not a call for art submissions! Like a fandom zine, we’re asking prospective artists to submit a portfolio of three works that you think best reflects your capabilities and a style you’d like to use for this anthology; you’ll also be asked to give us a link to your portfolio. We’ll review all the applications and select the artists we feel are the best fit for this project, and the selected artists will have creative license to create an artwork of their choice that features a queer interpretation of Much Ado About Nothing!

If you’re interested in this opportunity, this is your moment – read more about the anthology and, if you’re interested, submit an application!

Artist Applications for this anthology are open from May 2nd, 2021 through May 15th, 2021. The selected artists will be contacted on May 31st.

APPLY NOW!

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Announcing: Our First Call for Artists!

Duck Prints Press LLCis thrilled to announce we are planning our second anthology, a collection of works inspired by William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing! This anthology will feature both artwork and fiction, and will be similar in structure to a zine – except that, unlike a zine, we’ll be paying all contributors!

So, fanartists – are you interested in getting paid to imagine a queer version of Much Ado About Nothing?

We’d love to have you!

This post is not a call for art submissions! Like a fandom zine, we’re asking prospective artists to submit a portfolio of three works that you think best reflects your capabilities and a style you’d like to use for this anthology; you’ll also be asked to give us a link to your portfolio. We’ll review all the applications and select the artists we feel are the best fit for this project, and the selected artists will have creative license to create an artwork of their choice that features a queer interpretation of Much Ado About Nothing!

If you’re interested in this opportunity, this is your moment – read more about the anthology and, if you’re interested, submit an application!

Artist Applications for this anthology are open from May 2nd, 2021 through May 15th, 2021. The selected artists will be contacted on May 31st.

APPLY NOW!

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Welcome to May Trope Mayhem!

May Trope Mayhem is a multi-fandom/original fic writing event being run on the Duck Prints Press Tumblr, also open to other content creators if ya’ll are feeling so inspired! We’ve put together a list of 31 of our favorite tropes, one per day through the month of May, and we encourage creators to join us for this month of fun tropey mayhem.

May Trope Mayhem is open to anyone who wants to create anything – art, gif sets, mood boards, etc. – but we’re emphasizing fic writing

Our goal is to promote motivation and help with habit building, so we’re encouraging people to keep their ficlets under 1,000 words, or if you make art or a gif or some such, to stick to a sketch or a single image.

How can you participate? It’s easy! To participate, write a ficlet, a poem, or create any other content that you want, aligned with the prompt for the day! Post your correctly tagged fills to Tumblr, and we’ll reblog them! (you must tag warnings such as gore, MCD, sexual content, etc., so that people can avoid triggering material!) Please also tag fandom and ship, so people can find what interests them! We ask that you put the tags at the top of your post, so they’re easy to find. If you write more than 1k words, please use a read more, or if you write something with NSFW content or potentially triggering material, please put the entire story under a read more.

The primary platform for this challenge is Tumblr – we will NOT be boosting works posted on other platforms (such as Twitter), though you’re still welcome to participate regardless of which platform you’re on. If you post to AO3, you can also add your works to our collection there!

You don’t have to sign up, just post your fills. You don’t have to be a member of the Press. You don’t have to be part of a specific fandom, and we’re open to all ships, genres, formats, etc! You don’t have to post fills on the corresponding day, though we ask that if you’re writing for a day that hasn’t happened yet, please wait for that day to post.

This is a low-pressure event, held all in good fun, and we look forward to seeing what you create!

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Coming Soon: May Trope Mayhem!

Duck Prints Press will be hosting a small multi-fandom/original fic writing event on Tumblr called May Trope Mayhem! How it works:

  • we’ve put together a list of 31 of our favorite tropes, one per day through the month of May!
  • we’ll announce the prompts on May 1st.
  • open to anyone who wants to create anything, but we’re emphasizing fic writing
  • write a ficlet, or create any other content that you want, aligned with the prompt for the day! (we’re focused on fics, but we won’t say no to art, gifs, etc., if making those floats your boat)
  • our goal is to promote motivation and help with habit building, so we’re encouraging people to keep their ficlets under 1,000 words, or if you make art or a gif or something, to stick to a sketch or a single image.
  • post your correctly tagged fills to Tumblr, and we’ll reblog them! (you must tag warnings such as gore, MCD, sexual content, etc., so that people can avoid triggering material!) If you write more than 1k words, please use a read more, or if you write something with NSFW content or potentially triggering material, please put the entire story under a read more.
  • tag us @duckprintspress with your creations, and we’ll reblog them! If you post to AO3, you can also add them to our collection there! Note that we’ll only reblog works that respect our tagging rules and “read more” usage rules.

This is a low stakes, low pressure challenge, envisioned to help people who’ve been in a writing funk “get back into the groove.”

So, come groove with us – we’d love to see what you create!

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Add Magic to Taste Author Recruitment: Update!

Hey everyone! We’ve been working very hard to get all the applications reviewed, and we’re getting close – we’re definitely on track to have e-mails go out on April 7th as planned, and may (no promises!) be able to get them out a couple days early (but April 5th is absolutely the earliest possible date). We’ve fully rated 89 out of 102 stories, and here’s what we can say so far:

1. Ya’ll did amazing

2. No like seriously holy crap we are blown away.

3. In fact, we are so blown away that, in addition to inviting the top 20 rated authors to contribute to Add Magic to Taste, we’ve decided we’ll invite the next 20 highest rated authors to our Discord and also ask if they’d like contribute to a different anthology (entirely optional!) that we’re currently frantically planning…we don’t know the details of length, payment, etc., yet, but it’ll be “Legal Fanfiction” – transformative works based on an existing work in the Public Domain (current leading candidates are something by Jane Austen, something by Shakespeare, or Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein – we’ll be inviting all our Patrons to vote, so if you’d like a say, maybe back us!). Participation will be optional to those who receive the invites, and people who accept will no longer be eligible to pinch hit for Add Magic to Taste. More details pending!

4. We also noticed that some of us were kinder graders and some of us were stricter, so we added a step to our review process – instead of just taking each person’s three scores, averaging them, and et voila, we’re done, we decided to statistically standardize each reviewer’s scores. This adjusts everyone to the same scale (which is from roughly -3 to roughly +3, with 0 as average) to ensure that people who got stricter reviewers weren’t unfairly penalized and people who got kinder reviewers weren’t unfairly advantaged. We’re sharing about this in the interest of continued transparency, and for people who request their rubrics after acceptances and rejections are sent out, we’ll indicate both your raw scores and your statistically standardized scores.

We’re really excited to be winding down this process, and we expect to have more information to share about the Legal Fanfiction Anthology and our preliminary list of authors accepted to Add Magic to Taste in about a week!