Monday, August 1, 2011

The Write Agenda: The Right Company to Keep

In A.C. CrispinAbsolute WriteAccountabilityAmerican Book PublishingAnn CrispinAtlanta NightsAuthorsCredibility,David L. KuzminskiFilmmakerFree e-bookFree ebookInvestigationsJames D. MacDonaldMaking LightPreditors & EditorsProfessionalismPropagandaPublish AmericaPublishersPublishingRachael SaltzmanReputationReputation ManagementRobert FletcherScience Fiction & Fantasy Writers AssociationSelf-PublishingSFWAStrategic Book Group,Teresa Nielsen HaydenTravis TeaVictoria StraussYog's Law on April 20, 2011 at 7:05 pm
“When you have the facts on your side, argue the facts. When you have the law on your side, argue the law. When you have neither, holler.” – Al Gore
There is nothing more satisfying to log on to the internet and discover that you’ve been acknowledged by Making Light’s Moderator, Teresa Nielsen HaydenIn defense mode, Hadyen posted an article that stated that The Write Agenda “has been taking potshots atVictoria StraussAnn Crispin, our own Jim Macdonald, Absolute Write, Writer Beware, Preditors and Editors, SFWA,  Atlanta Nights, and other entities . . . .” In addition, while encouraging writers to avoid our company, she portrays our postings as “attacks” and that we are somehow affiliated with Robert Fletcher of The Literary Agent Group or C. Lee Nunn of American Book Publishing. The postings in response to her article are the typical propaganda retorts that reek of Ad hominem. Instead of addressing the arguments that we’ve posed, they want to make it personal calling us “cockroaches” and that our approach is somewhat akin to tactics utilized by the Church of Scientology[tm].
Firstly, we would not classify our postings as “potshots” or “attacks” on these individuals or entities. We’ve merely posted questions and requested proofs on some of their claims. For example, “American Book Publishing has been the focus of at least one police investigation.” Just because Victoria Strauss and the SFWA said it (or posted it) doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s true. Historically, these individuals have provided proofs and vetted their claims. In this particular instance, regarding American Book Publishing, they are devoid of any substantive proofs. Any reasonable man would question such postings that lack primary source material to back them up. Secondly, as a matter of record, we are neither affiliated with Robert Fletcher and American Book Publishing nor are we collaborating in concert with them. Thirdly, we do not engage in self-promotion, encourage the purchase of our works or request donations.
It’s interesting to note that whenever an individual or entity questions the veracity of the watchdogs the response, by the minions, resembles those of “The Flying Monkeys” in The Wizard of Oz . . . obeying and protecting those in the hierarchy. Also, you are most likely to be called a “troll” or a “sock puppet.” These kinds of monkeys can be found on various internet sites and frequently engage in propaganda strategies that fail to address the issue at hand and are nothing more than baseless attacks. Resorting to personal attacks in lieu of addressing the real issues only furthers speculation and questions their own credibility. Moreover, the request for Victoria Strauss and the SFWA to personally admit, deny and prove the existence of a “police report” regarding American Book Publishing is a fair and reasonable question. Until Victoria Strauss and the SWFA break their silence, start fending for themselves and stop relying on “The Flying Monkeys” to continue to cloud the issues, the veracity of the claim that American Book Publishing was the subject of a “police investigation” will remain a blemish on their legitimacy. There isn’t any facts, there is no law (or police report) so keep hollering . . . that’s what Flying Monkeys do. It would be more legitimate to use this energy in a positive manner to compel Victoria Strauss and the SFWA to prove their claims or admit that they were fabricated stories; to continue to leave this issue open on the table is an insult to all parties in the publishing industry.
We graciously welcome your continued company. Writers, never stop questioning or demanding answers.
“For when even when your enemy acknowledges you exist . . . therein validity exists.”
- Anonymous
The Write Agenda has been following Making Light bloggers and commenters who have Twitter accounts. Patrick and I blocked them when we found them in our followers list. If you find them in your own list, do whatever amuses you most.
They’ve also posted a string of new blog entries denouncing me, Jim MacdonaldYog’s Law, Ann Crispin, and other usual suspects, and an open letter to SFWA in which they misspell multiple names, grossly misquote Jim Macdonald and Robin Bailey, and demand that SFWA discipline, expel, and repudiate Ann CrispinVictoria Strauss, and Jim Macdonald in order to preserve SFWA’s good name.
They do get one thing right, probably by accident: they point out that there’s an element of the argument ad hominem in my own remarks about the [sic] Write Agenda. That’s true! There is! And furthermore, it’s valid! There’s a long history of bad behavior on both their parts that tells us that if Robert Fletcher and/or C. Lee Nunn are associated with a project, prudent writers shouldn’t touch it with a ten-foot pole.”
For more information click on the following links:
  “. . . [W]hen you sit in front of the blank screen and wonder if what you write will be good enough for the flying monkeys: Remember. You can never write well enough for the flying monkeys. And you don’t have to. Just write well enough to create that ecstatic sense of thunder on the keyboard, the rush of living large that comes from telling a story told with passion, not perfection. That keyboard thunder, that rage as you tear through a story with bliss and compassion and pathos and energy? It scares the flying monkeys. It scares them. It makes them cry big monkey tears. It’s why they hate you in the first place. (Emphasis Added).
-       Thomas Roche
 “Fallacy: Ad Hominem.” Holocaust Educational Resource. Web. 20 Apr. 2011. <>.
 Monkeys, Flying. “How to Get Kicked In the Balls By Flying Monkeys and Not Fuck Up Your Lipstick | Write Sex.” Write SEX – The Definitive Guide to Writing Erotica. Web. 20 Apr. 2011. <>.
“ProxyWhore.” Untitled Document. 28 Oct. 2010. Web. 26 Apr. 2011. <>.
 Teresa Nielsen Hayden, Teresa. “Making Light: The Write Agenda: The Wrong Company to Keep.”Making Light. 19 Apr. 2011. Web. 20 Apr. 2011. <>.
“When You Have the Facts on Your Side, Argue the Facts. When You Have the Law on Your Side, Argue the Law. When You Have Neither, Holler. by Al Gore.” Famous Quotes at QuoteDB – Interactive Database of Famous Quotations. Web. 20 Apr. 2011. <>.