So you've finished your manuscript or your collection of short stories and you're ready to obtain a copyright for your book. Obtaining a copyright for your book is easy since the copyright application can be found on-line along with complete instructions at the U. S. Copyright Office's official website.
Make sure your manuscript is in its near-final form. Once you obtain the copyright for your book, it is for the original work for which the copyright certificate was issued. While you may make minor changes to your work, you cannot radically alter the work. If you do, you will need to obtain a new copyright for your book.
Go to the U. S. Copyright Office website to begin the process for obtaining the copyright for your book. (see resource below)
Download the copyright form (Form CO). It is in PDF format and you will need the latest version of Adobe Reader.
Download and print the Copyright form instructions.
Fill in all required information related to the work being submitted, the author's information, and where the copyright certificate should be mailed.
If the manuscript is previously unpublished, you will submit one copy, printed on 8 ½ x 11 inch paper, along with the completed copyright registration form and a check for $45 made payable to the Library of Congress.
Mail the complete package (manuscript, completed Form CO and fee) to the Library of Congress, Copyright Office, using the address provided in the instructions. Also, to expedite processing of your copyright application, use the four-digit zip-code extension for a literary work as provided in the Copyright Application Instructions.
If you prefer, you can file the copyright application on-line and upload your work electronically. The copyright filing fee is only $35 if you submit your application and manuscript on-line.