SFF Creators Sign Letter Opposing Book Deals for Trump

Over 300 writers and editors have signed the No Book Deals for Traitors “letter of intent from publishing professionals of the United States,” including more than two dozen from the SFF field.

The text of the letter says:

We all love book publishing, but we have to be honest — our country is where it is in part because publishing has chased the money and notoriety of some pretty sketchy people, and has granted those same people both the imprimatur of respectability and a lot of money through sweetheart book deals.

As members of the writing and publishing community of the United States, we affirm that participation in the administration of Donald Trump must be considered a uniquely mitigating criterion for publishing houses when considering book deals.

Consequently, we believe: No participant in an administration that caged children, performed involuntary surgeries on captive women, and scoffed at science as millions were infected with a deadly virus should be enriched by the almost rote largesse of a big book deal. And no one who incited, suborned, instigated, or otherwise supported the January 6, 2021 coup attempt should have their philosophies remunerated and disseminated through our beloved publishing houses.

“Son of Sam” laws exist to prevent criminals from benefiting financially from writing about their crimes. In that spirit, those who enabled, promulgated, and covered up crimes against the American people should not be enriched through the coffers of publishing.

We are writers, editors, journalists, agents, and professionals in multiple forms of publishing. We believe in the power of words and we are tired of the industry we love enriching the monsters among us, and we will do whatever is in our power to stop it.

SFF authors and editors who have signed include:

  • Alex Acks (Author)
  • Charlie Jane Anders (author, Victories Greater Than Death)
  • Phoebe Barton (Writer)
  • Lauren Beukes (Author)
  • Holly Black (Author)
  • Stephen Blackmoore (Author)
  • Gwenda Bond (Author)
  • Cassandra Clare (Writer)
  • Anya Johanna DeNiro (Author)
  • Carl Engle-Laird (Editor, Macmillan)
  • Rose Fox (former senior reviews editor, Publishers Weekly)
  • Sarah Gailey (Author)
  • Jasmine Gower (Author)
  • Leigh Harlen (Author)
  • Sarah Hollowell (Author)
  • S.A. Hunt (Author)
  • Keffy Kehrli (Writer & Editor (GlitterShip magazine))
  • Mikki Kendall (Writer)
  • Cassandra Khaw (Senior Scriptwriter)
  • Sarah Kozloff (Author)
  • Stina Leicht (Author)
  • Malinda Lo (Author)
  • M Evan MacGriogair (Author)
  • Dan Moren (Author)
  • Sarah Pinsker (Author)
  • Chelsea Polk (Author)
  • Lev Rosen (Author)
  • Jason Sanford (Author)
  • Jon Skovron (Author)
  • Greg van Eekhout (Author)
  • Chuck Wendig (Author with PRH, S&S, etc)
  • Merc Fenn Wolfmoor (Author)

There is provision at the link for signers in the industry to add their names, so the number will be expanding.

69 thoughts on “SFF Creators Sign Letter Opposing Book Deals for Trump

  1. “Of course. For example, their employees donated to Democrats at multiples over Republican (Apple 5 to 1, Google 7-1, Amazon 4-1).”

    Doesn’t say anything about the company as the decision making isn’t done by equal vote from all employees. It only says that in a capitalist society, people are forced to work for rightwing entities even if they would prefer not to.

  2. I boggle at the idea that “anti-union” can be anything but right-wing. If some culturally progressive organization is anti-union, that makes it right-wing by definition.

    America! When will you be worthy of your million Hot-To-Trotskyites?

  3. @Rob Thornton

    IANAL nor am I trying to play one now. However, I have been listening to lawyers for some time. The “So To Speak” podcast from Reason Magazine has lawyers that focus on free speech issues on a regular basis. Jonah Goldberg’s “The Remnant” also has lawyers on as guests.

    My understanding is that there are three parts to the Brandenburg test; intent to speak, the imminence of lawlessness, and the likelihood of lawlessness. As Mr. Trump spoke at a site that was away from the Capitol, and as at that point there was no indication of lawlessness being likely or imminent, that one speech doesn’t satisfy all three parts.

    FWIW, the lawyers that I have been hearing largely think impeaching Mr. Trump is a worthy project and generally find his post-election behavior to be…in a word…deplorable.

    Regards,
    Dann
    ” ” said Pooh as he was rendered speechless

  4. Hampus Eckerman: …Leftwing companies would be those that don’t try to avoid taxes…

    Apart from that one item, now I’m curious which companies strike you as being leftwing.

  5. bill: Absolutely no one benefitted from the events of Jan 6.

    Is this not a self-evident statement? Refute it by naming someone, anyone, who is better off after Jan 6 than they would have been if the riots had not happened.

    @JJ — are you maintaining that Trump benefitted from the riots? In what way? Public approval? Historical standing?

  6. “Apart from that one item, now I’m curious which companies strike you as being leftwing.”

    In Sweden, we have a large chain of stores that are run as a cooperative. They are called “COOP”. They were absolutely leftwing when I grew up, but have toned it down over time. I think they cover around 20% of ordinary household shopping in Sweden. Myself, I live in an apartment owned by a cooperative as a whole. It owns 8000 apartments and have as a goal not to make profit, but to keep living costs down.

    Not sure how it is in US, but perhaps this link can give you answers?

    https://www.usworker.coop/directory/

  7. @ bill

    Is this not a self-evident statement? Refute it by naming someone, anyone, who is better off after Jan 6 than they would have been if the riots had not happened.

    Let’s rephrase the question. Who wanted to benefit from the January 6th insurrection?

    –It could be somebody who could benefit from a disruption in the electoral count in Congress.
    –It could be somebody who was perpetuating the myth that the 2020 election was a fraud, because a popular uprising in the Capitol could reinforce that myth.
    –It could also be somebody who wanted to stir up chaos, because they are very good at reading chaotic situations and benefitting from them.

    I’d go with Trump (and secondarily the GOP).

  8. bill:

    bill: Absolutely no one benefitted from the events of Jan 6.

    Is this not a self-evident statement?

    It’s your attempt to pretend to misunderstand my comment which concluded —

    What happened on January 6 was the fulfillment of the message Trump’s family and underlings put out. And we know who the beneficiary was.

    And I’m not going to jump into your rabbit hole.

  9. @Hampus Eckerman: The cooperative system has not really taken hold in the US.

    In Sweden, we have a large chain of stores that are run as a cooperative. They are called “COOP”. They were absolutely leftwing when I grew up, but have toned it down over time. I think they cover around 20% of ordinary household shopping in Sweden.

    In the US, in the sixties aftermath, almost every co-op was its own little thing. They covered around 20% of hippie household shopping. 😉 Maybe 35%.

    There weren’t any chains. The closest thing to that would be the distribution networks. I lived across the street from the Ozark Cooperative Warehouse for several years and saw the decline into apolitical organicism. Sad but not tragic, though it broke my heart at the time. Americans would rather lose than work together.

  10. In the UK the Co-op and maybe also John Lewis (the department store company, not the USA politician) would fit at least some of that. Possibly others, too, but those are the nationwide biggies. Oh, maybe Nationwide itself? That one’s been clinging to its building society credentials while all the competition switched to become banks.

    The USA has that one tech dude who pays his staff properly, I guess.

  11. As far as I can tell, the only thing this petition is going to achieve is giving the signers a sense of doing something and the right something new to point at when decrying left-ish values.
    Why do it?
    Also, just because it sticks out at me, the petition brings up Son-of-Sam rules which don’t apply because none of these people have been charged, let alone found guilty.

  12. bill: are you maintaining that Trump benefitted from the riots? In what way? Public approval? Historical standing?

    Did you not actually read my previous comment? Of course he benefitted. He got his ego stroked for hours — something that is critically important to him. And the fact that his followers were able to storm the Capitol with almost no resistance certainly bolstered their claims that what they were doing was right.

    (My father, an avid Trump supporter who has a college degree and ought to know better but apparently slept through Government class in high school, is adamantly insisting that the insurrection was no different from other protests where windows were broken and fires were started. 🙄 )

    Even now that the FBI is coming to pay a call on a lot of them, many are openly bragging to the agents about what they did.

    The fact that the insurrectionists were able to get as far as they did has only emboldened them in their cause, so I would say that the fabricated campaign of election fraud and conspiracy claims has certainly benefitted from the riots.

    None of these people are sorry or have the slightest recognition that what did was wrong. They just know now that it’s actually possible for them to come close to overthrowing the government.

  13. John A Arkansawyer:

    “. I lived across the street from the Ozark Cooperative Warehouse for several years and saw the decline into apolitical organicism. “

    That’s what happened in Sweden too, but COOP just surprised me by sending out a press release, demanding harsher laws to keep corporations accountable for human rights abuses.

    So not all is lost.

  14. @JJ:

    (My father, an avid Trump supporter who has a college degree and ought to know better but apparently slept through Government class in high school, is adamantly insisting that the insurrection was no different from other protests where windows were broken and fires were started. ? )

    It was possible to think that at first, especially when you discount for poor reporting about riotous activities generally. It’s not possible to think that after the fact. The guys with the plastic handcuffs were not planning to use them to fasten valuable objects to the Capitol building to keep them from going astray while the smashing was going on.

  15. @John A Arkansawyer: The gallows they set up outside the building was also a dead giveaway.

  16. @PhilRM: I only saw that later. it was sturdy-looking, wasn’t it? Not so much theater or protest as threat, at a minimum. I’d take a guillotine to demonstrations myself from time to time if I owned one–to stimulate interest in history, of course–but I wouldn’t bring a usable one. That’s not asking for trouble; that’s kicking trouble in the shins.

  17. bill: Absolutely no one benefitted from the events of Jan 6.

    An attempted burglary that fails does not benefit anyone. But if it had succeeded it would have benefitted the thief, and even its failure is still counted a crime. Trump’s initial refusal to speak out to stop the violence his words had set in motion demonstrates both his intention to cause the violence by those words and his perception that he WOULD benefit from it, IMO.

  18. John Wilkes Booth expected praise and adulation for his actions, and eagerly sought out newspapers so he could read his reviews – only to be disappointed at being panned, so he didn’t receive the benefit he hoped for. But Lincoln was still dead.

  19. @John A Arkansawyer As did dragging the police officer out of the building and then beating him with hockey sticks.

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