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Have you seen this yet?: Open Letter to Simon and Schuster CEO

This guy is pretty upset, I think. I tried to read the whole post but its loooong and it goes off on tangents and really, doesn’t really get much to the point. He was paid an advance of $65 000, six weeks after he signed his contract with S&S and apparently that’s not immediate enough for him – pretty standard turnaround where I work when you come on as a brand new employee but whatev. And he’s upset, I think because:

Your designer (who is good – I bet he’d have done good work if he ever saw my design brief) is not the problem.

No wait the designer is not the problem. Wait for it, cause publishers love to be told this one:

Okay, whatever. At least you spent some time implementing the three hour long design brief I wrote for the cover, giving specific recommendations and historical comps?

Alas, no. When I got the cover, they totally ignored everything about my audience, my goals, my notes I gave you guys, and whatever else. I re-wrote notes, and they were ignored. So much for “meaningful consultation”!

I’d list more, but it’s all the same sort of thing. Suffice to say, I kept coming with ideas that might or might not work, and getting back nothing or less than nothing in return.

So this dude is a debut author. And so of course, like many people who do things for the very first time, he knows everything about the industry. He knows what sells, he knows how to sell it, he knows how to run this business that he’s … oh, no, wait, that’s right. He’s never actually sold a book before.
But why I’m blogging this is not for the above or the other bunch of verbose ranting which you may or may not feel like ploughing through (oh my gosh does he not sell himself as a writer in that post! Or um, you know, someone I’d want to work with …) it’s for the UNNECESSARY use of the word “bitch” throughout it. You know, I get that he’s upset. I get that he feels like he needs to vent. I get he might feel like his back is up against the wall. But OMG! He feels like he’s being “treated like a bitch” and that that, THAT is the worst thing that could ever happen to him.

And this, just a few weeks after the mencallmethings campaign on Twitter.


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Episode 2: Live and Sassy with Alan Beatts

At the recent World Fantasy Convention in San Diego, we sat down with Alan Beatts from San Francisco’s Borderlands Books to discuss his article Amazon is Nobody’s Friend.  What followed was a fascinating and disturbing conversation about the future of books and bookstores, and the value of every reader’s vote.

We’d like to thank Alan, and hope you enjoy the podcast. We also promise to try to get a little closer to a regular schedule, now we’re both back from the US (where Alisa won a World Fantasy Award!).

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