Pflichtexemplar – Legal Deposit

How to write a German CV (cover)If you publish a book in Germany, then you are required to provide two copies – the so-called “Pflichtexemplare” – to the national library.

The system is similar to law in the UK requiring copies of new books to be sent to the British Library, and for certain others, eg. the Bodleian Library in Oxford, to be able to request free copies if they wish to do so.

As a result, the Deutsche Nationalbilbiothek is able to provide a complete database of anything published in Germany.

Recently, there has been some discussion as to whether digital publishers are required to provide free copies to the library as well, even to the extent of whether bloggers would have to provide copies of every post!

Luckily the library appears to have seen sense and just scans and stores any articles on blogs that they choose to archive.  But what about e-books?

With my e-book coming out at the beginning of October – tomorrow in fact – I contacted the library and asked them what I had to do.  Did they really want two digital copies, and in which format? [Read more…]

Planet Germany

If you live long enough in another country, then you inevitably gather a whole collection of experiences in dealing with the people and the culture there.

It may be that you have to handle lots of bureaucracy, or cope with unusual customs, or it may be just plain getting used to driving on the other side of the road.

For many ex-pats, these tales of living in a strange land can often form the basis of conversations with friends and family back home, but seldom do they get published as a book for a wider audience.

Planet GermanyCathy Dobson, who we talked to last year, took this brave step and wrote “Planet Germany” which, as she puts it, documents how “one British family bungles being German”.

In the book, she takes us through an entire year in the life of her family and business as we discover how they cope with living as British ex-pats in Germany.  Many readers will be familiar with the situations that she describes, such as the first knock on the door of the Sternsinger, the madness of the Karneval season, or just the amazement at the end of each year that, after telling their fortunes by dropping molten lead into cold water, most households sit down on New Year’s Eve to watch the same little-known sketch in black and white as the previous year.

Add to this the fact that her business partner tries to help her with such traditions as the correct use of Du and Sie, whilst at the same time forming her own opinion of the simple British customs that have travelled with the family.  Stuffing a turkey, for instance.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Planet Germany.  It is a book that you will not want to put down!

Post Pack

The “Post Pack” is a collection of 6 transcripts, each in their own PDF file. The pack is a ZIP file containing the 6 PDFs and is available from the AllThingsGerman Download Store.

The transcripts in this pack are:

To find out more, visit the AllThingsGerman Download Store.

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