I’m not a fan of this topic because it’s a heavy quagmire of technical lingo while also crossing over the legal threshold and getting the lawsuit treatment, which means fitting those square techno-pegs into round legal holes. 

We’ll see how the lawsuits pan out, but the takeaway will give the AI producers better guidelines. And AI will move forward. Does the technology generate new material or a ripoff of copyrighted material? That’s what the lawsuits will determine. Is the artwork AI creates sufficiently transformative, or is it simply derivative? Transformative is a legal use whereas derivative is a copyright violation. Who knows the right answer?

In the end, it’ll sufficiently evolve. Will we be able to work it into our own efforts, or will we fight it tooth and nail to the bitter end? It is coming. The best thing you can do is hone your craft and improve your storytelling to where no one else is doing what you’re doing at the level you’re doing it. 

Surrender? No, but grow with the times. It is 2023, after all. We were already supposed to have died five times over from global cooling, global warming, the H-bomb, pestilence, World War III, drought, overpopulation … so many ways we were supposed to be wiped from the face of the planet. But we’re still here, and so is AI.

At some point in time, I’ll play with it. Right now, I’m not touching it. I’ll wait until the lawsuits are resolved, so I don’t have to redo or unlearn something. It’s hard enough to write the book the first time, let alone do it over. I have too many books to write to be walking backward.

AI. It is the future. Will it replace humans? I sure as heck hope so, but in the realm of physical labor, cleaning, and those things that take us away from our more cerebral endeavors. Exercise the mind, and do great things. 

Some people will use AI to generate a great deal of new content in very short order. Can’t do anything about that except build a readership based on your work right now. They’ll keep coming back to you because they like the books you write. There’s also world-building. Build the intellectual property within which you can use AI to generate stories—you and no one else. To the IP owners, the spoils. Spice is life! 

Be the recipient of derivative revenue. Sit back on a beach and retire. That’s just one outcome. There are plenty of other alternative timelines. Start writing yours today.

Picture of Craig Martelle

Craig Martelle

High school Valedictorian enlists in the Marine Corps under a guaranteed tank contract. An inauspicious start that was quickly superseded by excelling in language study. Contract waived, a year at the Defense Language Institute to learn Russian and off to keep my ears on the big red machine during the Soviet years. Back to DLI for advanced Russian after reenlisting. Deploying. Then getting selected to get a commission. Earned a four-year degree in two years by majoring in Russian Language. It was a cop out, but I wanted to get back to the fleet. One summa cum laude graduation later, that’s where I found myself. My first gig as a second lieutenant was on a general staff. I did well enough that I stayed at that level or higher for the rest of my career, while getting some choice side gigs – UAE, Bahrain, Korea, Russia, and Ukraine. Major Martelle. I retired from the Marines after a couple years at the embassy in Moscow working arms control. The locals called me The German, because of my accent in Russian. That worked for me. It kept me off the radar. Just until it didn’t. Expelled after two years for activities inconsistent with my diplomatic status, I went to Ukraine. Can’t let twenty years of Russian language go to waste. More arms control. More diplomatic stuff. Then 9/11 and off to war. That was enough deployment for me. Then came retirement. Department of Homeland Security was a phenomenally miserable gig. I quit that job quickly enough and went to law school. A second summa cum laude later and I was working for a high-end consulting firm performing business diagnostics, business law, and leadership coaching. More deployments. For the money they paid me, I was good with that. Just until I wasn’t. Then I started writing. You’ll find Easter eggs from my career hidden within all my books. Enjoy the stories.

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