Posts Categorized: Commentary

Amazon vs. Hachette, a cage match


Amazon, after discouraging customers from buying books from publisher Hachette (Orbit), has abruptly escalated the battle by refusing orders late Thursday for upcoming Hachette books. Although this situation has generated a great deal of anger, it’s worth pointing out this is not new behavior as in 2010 Amazon removed direct access to Macmillan (Tor) books. And, of course, we all… Read more »

Weird How This Stuff Happens


You may remember that, some months ago, I wrote a piece declaiming a certain fantasy author who somehow manages to never get called out by his peers for saying sexist things. The purpose of that article wasn’t so much about that specific situation as an observation of a larger phenomenon: ultra-successful people get away with… Read more »

Interweb is in the Hugos’ Megahurtz

So, some news happened today. Speculative Fiction 2012: The Best Online Reviews, Essays and Commentary has been nominated for the Hugo Award for Best Related Work of 2013. [Editor's note: IS SOMEONE SCREWING WITH ME?!?] Although my name is on it, next to one of the finest bloggers in the field, Jared Shurin, I feel we can… Read more »

Why I’m Excited Today…

John Love has a new novel. Who’s John Love ? He’s a British dude who wrote one of the best novels of 2012 that no one has heard of–Faith. Built around the idea of aegrescit medendo, which is a Latin medical phrase meaning, ‘The cure is worse than the disease’, Faith is the story of a near mythical… Read more »

Observations About the Editorial Process in Publishing

For the past two years, or so, I’ve been doing a lot of early reading for authors. The first wave of these novels will be out at some point in 2014 (and a few are already out). Participating in this process has been enlightening as manuscripts developed from outlines, to partials, to alpha drafts, to… Read more »

Duck and Covers: Literary Agencies as Publishers?

[cp_dropcaps]I[/cp_dropcaps] love the business of publishing. It’s like a game of blackjack where you’ve got a card sharp on one end and a drunk-off-his-ass college kid on the other. The card sharp plays the game by the book. He stands on 15 when he’s supposed to, recognizing the odds generally favor a player who doesn’t… Read more »

Analogies. Because. The Publishing Debate.

This recent debate on self publishing versus traditional publishing feels a lot like the schisms within Christianity. Bear with me on this one. Assuming publishing as a whole is akin to Christianity writ large–your Orthodox, Mormons, Methodists, Pentecostals, etc.–then the Big-Five are the Roman Catholic Church and the self-publishing community is the Evangelists. Think about… Read more »

Militant heterosexual white cismale…erm… man speaks

On Tuesday, January 28, Larry Correia wrote a response to Alex Dally MacFarlane’s “Post-Binary Gender in SF: Introduction” on Regardless of what you think about the thrust of McFarlane’s points, Correia’s response is disproportionately offensive and factually wrong. In her piece on, McFarlane declares, “I want an end to the default of binary gender… Read more »

Thoughts on Breach Zone by Myke Cole

[cp_dropcaps]T[/cp_dropcaps]his is not a review of Breach Zone. Why is it not a review? Because my name is in the acknowledgements. Why is my name in the acknowledgements? Because I slipped Myke Cole $20. Regardless I can’t review the novel impartially. But, you don’t read me because I’m impartial right? You read me because I… Read more »

Award Snobbery and Genre Reader Baggage

Thursday, January 23, the short lists for the Kitschies were announced. Many of the novels on the list were not shelved as science fiction or fantasy, including a Thomas Pynchon novel and one previously short listed for the Man Booker Prize. In other words, the Kitschies awards are full of novels no one in the… Read more »