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Transcriptase

Interesting update on the William Sanders/Helix mess from a while back. A number of authors (it looks like fifteen) have chosen to make their Helix-published work available at Transcriptase. Some have removed their work from Helix, while others have chosen to let it remain (for a variety of reasons, including obligation, Sanders' refusal to remove the stories -- which he is within his rights to do, or because they still love the magazine). The author statements are also worth reading.

Reaction to this mess has been interesting. The blogosphere has been pretty strong in its condemnation. In another area, I've watched discussion begin with "What's the big deal" and devolve into people making slut/ho jokes. And in Sanders' newsgroup, I've seen accusations that the only people getting worked up over this are wannabe losers trying to make themselves feel important. To that last accusation, I think it's worth noting some of the names involved in Transcriptase, including Eugie Foster, Jennifer Pelland, Beth Bernobich, and Janis Ian, among others. The author statements are worth reading as well, and I think it's important to note the range of reactions.

Would write more, but I've got a book deadline in 24 hours.

ETA: First paragraph edited to try to reduce my own biases. Thanks, shsilver.

Comments

( 60 comments — Leave a comment )
shsilver
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:06 pm (UTC)
You note that some of the authors at Transcriptase left their work up at Helix either out of obligation or because they couldn't get it taken down. You seem to ignore that fact that those aren't the only reasons. Jennifer Pelland notes that she left it up because "But I’m also happy to have my stories remain in the Helix archives alongside so many wonderful authors’ wonderful works. I still love the magazine."

And many of the authors at Transcriptase have not (as of this writing) declared any reason for either leaving their story up or participating in the new project.
jimhines
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:09 pm (UTC)
Fair enough. I've edited that paragraph. Thanks!
(no subject) - beth_bernobich - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nick_kaufmann - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - rachel_swirsky - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:29 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pendamuse - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Jul. 31st, 2008 04:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nick_kaufmann - Jul. 31st, 2008 04:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
I may be the first to say this, so be it. - pendamuse - Jul. 31st, 2008 05:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Jul. 31st, 2008 05:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nick_kaufmann - Jul. 31st, 2008 05:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Jul. 31st, 2008 05:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - shsilver - Jul. 31st, 2008 08:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nick_kaufmann - Jul. 31st, 2008 09:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - rachel_swirsky - Jul. 31st, 2008 04:56 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pats_quinade - Jul. 31st, 2008 11:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - rachel_swirsky - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
michaeldthomas
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:06 pm (UTC)
It's a nice new website. I just read jenwrites's "Captive Girl." Wow.

Hopefully, this means that a bunch of great authors will no longer get punished for the idiocy of their editor.

I gave up trying to read Sanders's side of the story when he decided to say that tobiasbuckell supports terrorism. His gonzo Hunter S. Thompson knock-off persona quickly gets tiring.





jimhines
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:11 pm (UTC)
My brain is sleep this morning -- what kind of punishment do you mean?
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jimhines - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pats_quinade - Jul. 31st, 2008 11:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
nick_kaufmann
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
Interesting stuff. Thanks for the link.

Having followed this debacle from the start, I can't believe how Sanders continued to shoot himself in the foot, over and over again, until he finally truly became the boogeyman he swore he wasn't. And all out of embarrassment at being caught, really. If he had simply apologized and explained what he meant, none of this would have happened.
jimhines
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:13 pm (UTC)
It's a little mind-boggling. I keep comparing it to Sean Wallace, who responded to criticism of Prime by actually taking the complaints seriously and trying to offer explanations and apologies where appropriate.
(no subject) - nick_kaufmann - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jimhines - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nick_kaufmann - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
antonstrout
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
Book deadline? What a perfect time to challenge you to a Facebook game of Word Twist!!
jimhines
Jul. 31st, 2008 03:11 pm (UTC)
But then when will I have time to finish planning the wedding? You still haven't gotten back to me about the cake, by the way...
(no subject) - antonstrout - Jul. 31st, 2008 03:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Jul. 31st, 2008 04:23 pm (UTC)
Actually, I don't submit stories to Orson Scott Card's Intergalatic Medicine Show. I just don't want to go there, with that guy.

Margaret Yang
brashley46
Jul. 31st, 2008 05:02 pm (UTC)
When I get home from work tonight, I will have something to say about this ... right now, though, I will say that a) William is not a racist, darnit, and b) some people willfully misinterpret what he says, and some have done so for years.
jimhines
Jul. 31st, 2008 05:05 pm (UTC)
I'll be interested to read your thoughts. I don't know the man personally, so all I've had to go on are his words, both the original letter and his responses to those who challenged him.
(no subject) - beth_bernobich - Jul. 31st, 2008 06:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - brashley46 - Aug. 1st, 2008 12:07 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ann_leckie - Aug. 1st, 2008 12:34 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pats_quinade - Aug. 1st, 2008 03:14 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jimhines - Aug. 1st, 2008 12:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - brashley46 - Aug. 1st, 2008 01:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jimhines - Aug. 1st, 2008 01:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pendamuse - Jul. 31st, 2008 06:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - rachel_swirsky - Aug. 1st, 2008 03:38 am (UTC) - Expand
steve_buchheit
Jul. 31st, 2008 05:26 pm (UTC)
Crack that whip! Used to have a poster called, "Deadline." It was a photo of a smoking revolver in place of a phone handset. Love that poster.
rhondaparrish
Jul. 31st, 2008 06:03 pm (UTC)
Wow. Just wow. How did I miss all this?

*goes back to reading*
jimhines
Jul. 31st, 2008 06:11 pm (UTC)
It got a decent amount of play in the blogosphere. I posted one entry about it here, but I'd probably suggest Tobias' blog as worth reading first.
(no subject) - rhondaparrish - Jul. 31st, 2008 10:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
brashley46
Aug. 1st, 2008 12:33 am (UTC)
Re: the "refusal" to pull stories off the Helix website, Sanders does not maintain that website himself; the person who does is a professional, full-time web designer, who donates her time to the mag. If anybody were prepared to pay her for the time and effort to totally delete his or her story at her professional rates, William was willing for that to happen.

As a website maintainer myself ( http://ndpsocialists.ca ) I can appreciate the work involved in restructuring a webzine to completely withdraw a story. It's more than just hitting the delete key.
jimhines
Aug. 1st, 2008 01:12 am (UTC)
On 7/14 at 9:00 pm, Sanders posted in his newsgroup that he would remove stories at the authors' requests.

On 7/15 at 1:00 am, he changed this offer to require $40.

On 7/16 at 8:45 pm, he posted again, saying "It's been long enough ... I don't believe there are going to be any others (the imposition of cash charges seems to have had a distinctly damping effect) but if there are, tough shit."

He provided a 48-hour window for authors to remove their stories, and anyone who missed that window is out of luck.

Given that situation, I feel comfortable naming his "refusal" as one possible reason some Transcriptase authors may still have stories posted at Helix.
(no subject) - pats_quinade - Aug. 1st, 2008 03:09 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jimhines - Aug. 1st, 2008 11:27 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - beth_bernobich - Aug. 1st, 2008 02:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
michaeldthomas
Aug. 1st, 2008 01:35 am (UTC)
So, Jim, what are you planning for tomorrow? ;)

I'm thinking Larry Niven.
jimhines
Aug. 1st, 2008 01:41 am (UTC)
Oh, harumph. Two posts in a row does not a trend make :-P

I remember catching that "Spanish rumormongering" bit a while back. As I recall it got some decent mockery, though not the same level of anger as Card and Sanders have received lately.

I had actually been hoping to make a fun little announcement tomorrow, but the contracts still haven't shown up. So instead you'll probably just get me freaking out about last-minute fixes to the mermaid book.
(no subject) - michaeldthomas - Aug. 1st, 2008 01:48 am (UTC) - Expand
Dear God! - (Anonymous) - Aug. 1st, 2008 06:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
( 60 comments — Leave a comment )

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