Both Sarah Hoyt and I have previously written about the ideological gatekeepers in publishing, a situation that has persisted for at least 20 years and has continually gotten worse over time. The SJWs in science fiction deny it,of course, and they’ve been able to get away with doing so because most authors are afraid to talk for fear of their careers being destroyed.
But the ability to publish independently is eliminating that fear:
I launched a book this week and I went Indie with it. Indie means I released it on Amazon via Kindle Direct Publishing. I had to. My Publisher, HarperVoyager, refused to publish it because of some of the ideas I wrote about in it. In other words, they were attempting to effectively ban a book because they felt the ideas and concepts I was writing about were dangerous and more importantly, not in keeping with their philosophical ideals. They felt my ideas weren’t socially acceptable and were “guaranteed to lose fifty percent of my audience” as related back to me by my agent. But more importantly… they were “deeply offended”….
apparently advancing the thought that a brand new life form might see
us, humanity, as dangerous because we terminate our young, apparently…
that’s a ThoughtCrime most heinous over at Harper Collins. Even for one
tiny little chapter.
Here’s what happened next. I was not given notes as writers are
typically given during the editorial process. I was told by my agent
that my editor was upset and “deeply offended” that I had even dared
advanced this idea. As though I had no right to have such a thought or
even game the idea within a science fiction universe. I was immediately
removed from the publication schedule which as far as I know is odd and
unprecedented, especially for an author who has had both critical and
commercial success. This, being removed from the production schedule,
happened before my agent had even communicated the editor’s demand that I
immediately change the offending chapter to something more “socially”
(read “progressive”) acceptable. That seemed odd. How could they
possibly have known that I would or would not change it? It seems
reasonable to ask first. And stating that I would lose fifty percent of
my readers if I wrote what I wrote, well, they never seem to mind, or
worry about losing readers, when other writers publish their
progressive-oriented personal agendas on modern morality when they’re on
the “right side” of history regarding the anti-religion, gender and
They don’t worry about those issues because they’re
deemed important, especially when they’re ham-handedly jammed into the
framework of the story. They must deem it a public service, especially
if there is a corresponding Social Justice outcry. It’s for the “greater
good” and the critics are just bigots anyways. Isn’t that what they
always say? That anyone else who doesn’t think the way they do is just a
bigot and a phobic of some kind. What a boorish way to dismiss a
counter-viewpoint. Thinking like that made the concentration camps
possible. So, maybe they were so upset by what I’d written they forgot
to be professional? They merely demanded that I rewrite that chapter not
because it was poorly written, or, not supportive of the arc of the
novel. No, they demanded it be struck from the record because they hate
the idea I’d advanced. They demanded it be deleted without discussion.
They felt it was for… the “greater good.” That is censorship, and a
violation of everyone’s right to free speech. They demanded it be so or
else… I wouldn’t be published.
That’s how they threatened a writer with a
I am a writer.
No. One. Will Ever. Bully. Me.
I’ve had four – FOUR – book contracts either paid off or canceled myself because a gatekeeper inside the publishing house disliked the ideological content of a book that the editor had wanted to sign. In fairness, this hasn’t always been an SJW gatekeeper, as Media Whores was killed by a conservative publishing house after they learned that I was not solely targeting the left-wing media whores, but had written a chapter on Bill O’Reilly.
But in three out of the four cases, it was an SJW playing thought police. Publishing, as an industry, has largely been converged, which is why so much of it is so unreadable these days. They are genuinely less interested in selling books and making money than advancing their social justice cause.