Tuesday, October 9, 2018

West Side Boy Makes Good

     I knew it would arrive today. The president of the publishing house assured me over the phone on Friday night it would get here from Scottsdale by today at the latest. It arrived in a large bundle of other stuff from the three day buildup of mail after the holiday weekend. Among the detritus: Begs from the usual animal rights charity groups to whom I send small sums of money on occasion and a couple of notices from my insurance company finding me more than 50% at fault for impeding the path of a woman who drove her dark gray SUV on a dark gray road on a dark gray and rainy night without her headlights. Among the not so welcome news was a premium hike and an invitation with an appeal notice notifying me I needed to send them a check for $50, nonrefundable, if I wished to contest the findings.
     There was also this, my first book contract, thereby ensuring no insurance company could spoil my mood. Before I reveal the basic contents, let me say a few things to a few people in particular:
     CC, I will celebrate any time and in any way I see fit. This is now set in stone. Their copy of the contract is getting Priority shipped back to Arizona and this is a done deal. I have lived for decades with the artificial failure and very real anger and depression visited upon me on a nearly daily basis from literary agents and publishers.who are too stupid to know a good novel when they see one. It's time to feel good about myself and not merely guardedly optimistic.
     Chadwick, you once pecked out on your semen-flecked keyboard earlier this year that I'd never get published, that I would be a perennial failure while you would always succeed because you're "superior to (me) in every conceivable way (a line which found its way into The Doll Maker as written by my serial killer)." And don't think for a minute that the fact has been lost on me that I have a publisher and you don't, that what little you submitted for approval was rejected by Amazon for copyright infringement. At least I generate my own material.
     To all you lazy, corner-cutting literary agents who kept insisting that the business "is so subjective" and that your form letters for both The Doll Maker and Tatterdemalion (which is getting a contract of its own) shouldn't be taken as a final No because you're "sure other agents will feel differently" and, of course, the hoary old tale that you need a literary agent to get a legitimate publishing contract:
     It's not "so subjective" that all you jaded, self-interested morons aren't saying the same thing in the boilerplate you have your flunkies send out because you didn't think enough of me and my work to spend even the 10 seconds it would've taken you to email it. And I'm living fucking proof that you do not need a literary agent to get a real book contract. And every time I get a form letter from you or one of your low-paid flunkies, I will inform you of that and offer to send you my first sales report so you can calculate the 15% you missed out on by dismissing my material without even reading it.
     Chadwick and those literary speed-dating assholes just made me more bound and determined than ever to get a contract. On New Year's Day this year, I vowed 2018 would be my year. Yeah, I've been saying that every year for decades. But this time I meant it. Well, I meant it every year, too.
     But this year was different somehow in that I made a rare New Year's resolution not to take No for an answer. I made it with the cold fury and stubbornness that sometimes puts steel in our resolve when we've had it up to here with being kicked like a stray dog for years on end. I've taken to telling others of late that the only thing that had kept me in the swim these past few years was sheer stubbornness and spite.
     The contract you see above is for a hardcover (two editions, one with a dust cover and another with a case), paperback, ebook and audiobook deal for The Doll Maker and will, I'm confident, be succeeded by one for Tatterdemalion. I get to retain the dramatic and TV rights, merchandising, multimedia and all other ancillary rights. My new publisher, Burchette & Ferguson, is well connected and has access to 39,000 distribution points including those with Ingram's and Macmillan, two very major book distributors. They're also going to send the book along to Kirkus for a review and arrange a book blog tour and, quite possibly, even a book signing tour. They're also going to place my book in brick and mortar stores all over the country.
     Yes, it's real and nothing and nobody can take it away from me.
     As this is my first book contract and that I signed it not two hours ago, it still hasn't sunk in, yet. I'm walking around the house and mumbling, "Holy shit, I just signed a book contract!"
     But after three and a half years of living on the very outermost fringes of the internet's consciousness, Scott Carson, engineering and photographic prodigy of 69th Street, is about to make good. Now the rest of the country will know what really happened in Whitechapel in the fall of 1888 and, seven months later, beneath the streets of New York. I hope to see you all there one way or the other either in the ethers or at a book signing.


At October 16, 2018 at 7:12 PM, Blogger Stan B. said...

Well deserved... CONGRATS!!!


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