There's a scene in the TV show The Wire. Detective Kima Greggs has been shot twice, she's still in recovery, the hunt for the men who shot her and killed a police informant is on.
They know who did it. Got enough evidence to start connecting the dots. But no witnesses. No guns.
It can be hard to make a case without a witness or the weapon.
So the detectives go to show Kima some spreads. She picks out one of the shooters.
Then the second page of spreads. And she says she can pick out Little Man, 'cos he's in the front, trying to grab the money off the dashboard. But the other one's in the dark. She can't see him.
They tell her they found their jackets. Got a DNA hit to another target of their investigation, Wee Bey. Found a soda can at the scene with a print from Little Man. They tell her about the talk on The Wire - Bey and Little Man are in the wind.
It's all pointing to them, and if she'd ID her shooters, it would play a whole lot better.
What does Kima say? If you'd been watching the show, you'd know she knows there's no doubt Bey was the other shooter. Detective Bunk tells her it'll play a whole lot easier if she gives the ID.
Kima says sometimes, things gotta play hard.
Indeed they do.
I'm not taking the publishing contract I was offered. I'm not going to get into the whole song and dance about it. Suffice it to say that, once all the paperwork was in front of me, there were some issues that started to come up. I sought legal consultation, talked to somebody who reviews contracts all the time and ranks them, and reached one inescapable conclusion. It would be a mistake.
I feel a bit like I let you all down, you were so happy for me. Believe me, a few weeks ago I was pretty damn happy too!
But also believe me when I say I'm certain this is the right decision and I don't regret it. I never will.
I can't get into all the sticking points. But I'll tell you one. They wanted me to sign over the first option for all future works I ever wrote in my lifetime at the current contract terms if they opted to publish the work.
Which, when you looked through the whole deal, meant being pretty much an indentured slave.
I know it can be tempting to want something so much that you're prepared to compromise on a deal in order to see your dream come true. But I have seen authors come out on the other side of horror stories, seeing the first book in a planned series virtually killed by a bad publisher that didn't do a good job on the editing or the promotion.
Making their series almost impossible to sell elsewhere.
So, I could have taken a bad deal. And my book would have been out in April.
But sometimes, things gotta play hard.
Right now, I'm working on some short stories, which I always find stressful. I'm working ahead to the next few issues of Spinetingler. I'm blabbering away on a new forum that's not yet public but will be soon. I'm waiting on some feedback that'll help me in the next phase of tweaking on the currently titled Terms of Redemption that I had the offer on (formerly Echoes and Dust). And I'm designing my website. Not sure why I need one, but hey, why not?
So things are pretty good in my little corner of the world. Sure, I haven't signed a contract. One might be right around the corner - 3 Canadian publishers, 2 US publishers and 1 UK publisher are still talking to me with varying levels of interest indicated - but maybe not. Regardless, I have to believe that no contract is better than a very bad contract, and that when the time is right, things will fall into place.
But I would like to say thanks for all the encouragement and support. You guys rock! XO