SFWA Turns Down Jon Del Arroz Again

Jon Del Arroz says that on Friday his latest application for SFWA membership was denied:

Same form letter as last time. No one will respond, no one will call. Looks like nothing’s changed within the org.  Still a bunch of unprofessional people. I couldn’t imagine people acting like this in my real job. 

Immediately after Mary Robinette Kowal took office as SFWA’s new President in July, JDA blogged that his application for membership was is already in her inbox (“A New Dawn For SFWA!” [Internet Archive link]), and he posed as a supporter: ‘Things are changing at SFWA as my friend Mary Robinette Kowal has been installed as president, after I endorsed her candidacy early on.”

But today he claimed his rejection was another symptom of the horrors in this past weekend’s news: “SFWA, Mass Shootings, And The Ugly Ideology Of White Supremacy” [Internet Archive link].

Over the weekend, I was pronounced banned from SFWA, an act which is both a heavy blow to me as a professional writer trying to make a name for myself, and an atrocious act as standards are applied to me, a Hispanic author, which are not applied to many of their white members….

In contrast to JDA’s first time around, SFWA hasn’t publicly addressed its latest action. In January 2018, the organization said on the SFWA Blog that they had denied an unnamed person’s membership application, which Jon Del Arroz promptly identified as his own. Their 2018 statement began:

Recently, a science fiction writer made a very public announcement of his application to join SFWA. SFWA Bylaws section VI.1.c.i gives discretion to the membership credentials committee “regardless of qualifications.” Based on the behavior of and online statements by this writer over the preceding year or so, which the credentials committee believes is inconsistent with the obligations that SFWA members have to one another, the committee has determined that it has good and sufficient cause to deny this membership.

Perhaps no more needs to be said.

59 thoughts on “SFWA Turns Down Jon Del Arroz Again

  1. Agreed on all counts, including the Tim Powers fandom. My reaction to seeing that there was a free JdA book was, “That’s way overpriced.”

    (I’m not gonna say I wouldn’t read one for any money, ’cause I can be bought. But you’re gonna have to do way better than just “$0”.)

  2. @Paul —

    I don’t read works by people who abuse me, or abuse my friends.

    For me, that’s going a step too far.

    I don’t give money to people who abuse me or my friends — for which reason I would neither buy their books nor “borrow” from KU. But I certainly would read free ones to learn more about their writing.

    Knowledge is power.

  3. And of course, I have not suggested that anyone HAS to read JdA at all.

    I only suggest that everyone…including me….should be careful about flipping the “I’ll never read that person” switch as a general statement.

    The first question ought to be whether or not the book/story/novella is good or not.

    Regards,
    Dann
    There is no substitute for a militant freedom. The only alternative is submission and slavery. -Calvin Coolidge

  4. After Jerry Pournelle shouted at me and backed me into a corner at Worldcon when I was a teenager working in the Green Room, I never bought another new book of his again, nor checked them out of the library. I would, however, buy used copies. I was willing to read his work, but not willing to give him money.

  5. @Dann

    I consider that question to be unrelated. Whether a book sounds interesting or not is the primary question for authors I don’t know or feel neutral-to-positive about. If it’s an author I will never read, it’ll either be because I dislike their work (but not necessarily them) or because something they’ve done is thoroughly objectionable. If it’s about their actions, the book itself doesn’t matter. I’m taking a principled stand about where I choose to spend my money. It wouldn’t be very principled if I dropped it for a particularly interesting dragon concept.

  6. “I only suggest that everyone…including me….should be careful about flipping the “I’ll never read that person” switch as a general statement.”

    Not sure why. There’s such an enormous amount of stuff to read available that I won’t be lacking, regardless of how many writers I’ll skip out of.

  7. @Hampus Eckerman

    Not sure why. There’s such an enormous amount of stuff to read available that I won’t be lacking, regardless of how many writers I’ll skip out of.

    Agreed. There’s too much to read to waste time trying to read everything, and especially the work of people who spend their non-writing time being actively abusive to other people, especially people I care about and respect.

    I actually don’t owe JdA a “fair chance” with regard to his books. His behavior causes me to want to avoid his books, and it’s hard to fit in everything that does interest me.

    I think it was Heinlein who said that in writing stories, he was competing for people’s beer money. While the specific example of beer is inapplicable to me, the basic point remains inarguable. Over the last decade or so, I’ve discovered a lot of new or new-to-me writers who are well out of the “echo chamber” of what I might have just read by default–but JdA seems to put in extra effort to ensure that I won’t be tempted to spend either my disposable money or my disposable time on his work.

    And that’s his problem, not mine. I’ve got plenty to read.

  8. @Lis —

    “JdA seems to put in extra effort to ensure that I won’t be tempted to spend either my disposable money or my disposable time on his work.”

    So much this. He seems to have based his whole career on driving people away from his books. It seems like he can’t even post a simple promo for any of his books without including some sort of snide little us-vs-them digs. And since he continually reminds us that he doesn’t want our business, then I say let’s give him what he wants.

    Whatever floats his boat, I guess?

  9. Dann665: I only suggest that everyone… including me… should be careful about flipping the “I’ll never read that person” switch as a general statement.

    Nah. Given that I have more books which I know I will enjoy on my TBR pile than I will be able to read before I die, I’m perfectly comfortable leaving works by people who’ve behaved abusively off that list. I’m not going to be missing out on anything.

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