I was kind of inspired by this, to dash off an open letter to my publisher.
I & I Press
You better take a seat.
This is going to get rough.
We’ve had some straight talks before, and I don’t want to look like I’m just causing problems. Well, actually I do; but more to the point, I am writing because, we do have a serious problem.
Over the past year you have begun treating me like a slave. Like you own me. In truth, this is partially my fault, because I’ve let you treat me like a slave. But it’s mainly your fault. Why. Because I’m an artist. I produce the content by which you live. Ergo, I am the reason you live. You really ought to be taking better care of me. I am not your slave.
The Backstory Starts in Southeast Asia
Bangkok to be exact. I’d just finished submitting, Tag, to a few agents, all of whom politely, in most instances, declined. Not to say that the others were impolite, I don’t know, because they didn’t reply at all. Anyway. You came along and you offered to publish my book.
On the 1st December 2010, your publishing house and I signed for an advance of US$ 240,000 for two books with an option on the third (when I explained what trilogy meant).
I’m under the impression that’s pretty good for an unknown author who started writing a year before signing with you. And you and I, we hit it off. We partied, (remember that Samba in Patpong… but hey it’s cool – what happens on tour, stays on tour ;)), and man you made a lot of promises. I know, I recorded them.
Simon, I was really excited to work with you guys.
That night you published. Bang, worldwide distribution.
You put up a blog, you promoted me in forums, set up a facebook page, got me onto just about every ebook major vendor site there is via Smashwords…
So, okay, you did well. And, I grant you, you hung in there all year. You got reviews for the book, without paying for of them, you spent money on advertising. Some of which worked and some of which didn’t. You reported sales to me twice a day (at least :)). You got me new credit cards, bought me a car, put my kids through school for the year, paid for my bandwidth, and listened to me whenever I needed.
And you know, some authors might be satisfied with that. But no, Simon. That’s just not me.
Like I said, we have a serious problem.
You see, back in that bar in Patpong, when you were talking to … well never mind, back then, you promised that you would put out a print version. Simon – that was a year ago. Yes, a whole year and fifteen days ago to be exact.
This windowing of the hardcover and the paperback has got to stop.
Okay, I know that you’ve been busy, even though I’m your only client. I know you’ve been moonlighting as an agent on the side, and that’s cool – I’ve got my day job too. And I know that you’ve agreed to the same terms as last year for next year – and that’s cool. Really I’m appreciative (hey, thanks for agreeing to throw in that holiday over the New Year – that was pretty nice of you), but this windowing fetish of yours has to stop. Now.
Dude, get on with it! Okay.
Author of, Tag (just in case you forgot).