When the final chapter of "The Legend of the Sword of the Day and the Sword of the Night" was translated to English I kept hearing on the chatroom where it was posted that we had best read it now before the author asked the translation to be taken down off the site.

The Author also made this post

Thanks Crazyla for your work and for finishing the translation, I know it was not easy (the long chapters and some of the words used in it).

Hehe, I would had posted the epilogue one or two days after the final chapter (as I did with the original in Spanish), it was funny (as a writer) to see peoples reactions to that end ;)

And, as Crazyla said, read and enjoy it while is up, I don´t know when I going to ask to take it down, but my publisher is actually studying the possibility of publication, so the sign of a publishing contract is not that far away.

Now from my understanding it's set in the Nanohaverse and uses the same characters while adding new ones so it's not a entirely different story with coincidental characters going by the same names, however I have always been told that Fanfiction could never be published unless the original creators adopted it which to my knowledge the author hasn't.

So how does one get Fanfiction "Published", does the original creators need to be contacted to get permission?

4 Answers 4


We aren't lawyers, and I don't think there's a single hard and fast rule for this. Rights can vary depending on geography, time, and author preference.

  • There are works which are now in the public domain which anyone can adapt, so, for example, any Sherlock Holmes story which uses elements which Conan Doyle wrote before 1923 can be legitimately published or broadcast. (Yes, the BBC Sherlock is technically fanfic).
  • Some authors invite you to play in their universes (Mercedes Lackey oversees anthologies of short stories written about her worlds and characters) and some don't want you even to assemble an encyclopedia of what's been printed if that encyclopedia is for sale (JK Rowling).
  • Parody may be acceptable to the author/estate (Bored of the Rings) or not (The Wind Done Gone).
  • Amazon set up a deal with some writers and TV shows which gave people permission to sell fanfic in specific universes as Kindle books.

Honestly, the only way this writer can try for publication is to talk to the author of the original 'verse and try to work out permission. And there's no guarantee the fanfic writer will get it.


If the original work is still protected by an existing copyright, then the only way any form of fan fiction could be published would be with the permission of the original author or copyright owner. The reason for this is that fan fiction by its very nature is considered a derivative of the original, and a copyright protects the owner against any derivative works being created.

There are some authors who willingly accept the existence of fan fiction web sites where people can contribute their own stories told in the same setting or with the same characters, but even those authors would draw the line at having those stories "published" in the form of a book or an e-book. There are also certain fan fiction sites that exist without the knowledge or approval of the original author, and once they are discovered, they are often shut down. Quite simply, no author wants to end up competing with themselves!

As Lauren pointed out in her response, there are certain exceptions or situations where writing fan fiction would be considered perfectly acceptable (public domain, Kindle Worlds). The responsibility lies with the author of the new content to ensure that their works don't violate any existing copyrights.


In addition to the other answers, a writer of fanfiction may also go the fifty shades of grey route. That is, rewriting the fanfic, so that it isn't in the same world anymore and stands on it's own.


PN Elrod is the author of a series of vampire/detective novels called the Jack Flemming series. She also wrote a tie-in novel to the police procedural series Forever Knight, which she was able to do because she had a relationship with the publisher and her reputation as successful author was well established by that stage.

She requested permission to write the tie-in book by using the same publishing package that she would use for any of her original novels. She had a treatment and sample chapters ready to go, which is why she was assigned the project.

If you're an amateur novelist the best you can hope for is to publish your story through Wattpad or a similar site. But I wouldn't recommend trying to publish fanfiction with the intent to profit financially, unless the original copyright is expired.

  • I do not understand: is your answer "you need to be in a relationship with the publisher to get fanfiction published"? Are the works you mention fanfiction works? Feb 17, 2019 at 19:06
  • No. Forever Knight is a television series. The publishing company that was authorized by the property holder to create original tie-in novels base on the series and using series characters, accepted Elrod's book proposal. But she is the one who initiated the proposal as opposed to her publisher assgning her the book. So in a sense she got paid to write and publish her fanfiction. Feb 17, 2019 at 19:22

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