Sunday, November 17, 2019

Authors call out ChiZine

I found this while diving into weeks of email that have been sadly neglected.

Posted: 10 Nov 2019 11:57 AM PST
From File 770:
ChiZine Publications, the Canadian horror publisher run by Sandra Kasturi and Brett Savory, has been under fire from writers this week for slow payment and nonpayment, accused of bullying and blackballing an author who complained, and in connection with remarks made by some individuals associated with CZP of a sexist and racist nature.
The social media outpouring seems to have been precipitated by the sharing of what passed between author Ed Kurtz and ChiZine Publications. I haven’t sourced the beginnings of this conversation (which may not have been public), but the details appear in CZP’s denial and Kurtz’ rebuttal below. But before turning to them, it’s helpful to look at one of Michael Matheson’s posts.



Heads up, problems at ChiZine Publications

Complaints about failure to pay royalties and more are coming in, although some authors defend ChiZine Publications. You can read more at Writer Beware, but here's a snippet:

Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware®

If you're not part of the horror or speculative fiction community, you may not be aware of the scandal that over the past two weeks has engulfed ChiZine Publications, a (previously) highly-regarded Canadian independent publisher.

In September of this year, several authors, including Ed Kurtz, made a complaint to the Horror Writers of America about long-overdue royalties at ChiZine. On November 5, after the complaint became public knowledge, CZP posted a statement on its Facebook page, claiming that Kurtz's royalties were "currently paid in full" and that "Any other monies he might be due will be paid on his next royalty statement". Kurtz's response, posted by his partner on Facebook a day later, was blistering:

Read more: 


Friday, November 8, 2019

Story contest, enter at your own risk

If you enter the Sunday Times/Audible short story contest, you are giving away many of your rights as an author.

From Writer Beware:

Founded in 2010, The Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award bills itself as "the richest prize for a single short story in the English language." And indeed, the prize is major: the winner receives a cool £30,000 (no, I did not add extra zeroes.)

With judges yet to be finalized, the selection process will include a 20-story longlist announced in May 2020, a six-story shortlist unveiled in June 2020, and the winner revealed on July 2. The shortlisted stories will be published in an Audible audiobook, with included writers receiving "an extra £1,000 fee, on top of a prize payment of £1,000". To be eligible, writers must previously have had at least one work published in the UK or Ireland by an "established print publisher or an established printed magazine" (the Terms and Conditions include an extensive list of the kinds of publishers and magazines that don't qualify). The contest is open for entries until 6:00 pm on December 13.

  . . . 

 So what's the catch? -- because you know I wouldn't be writing this post if there weren't one. Well, as so often happens, it's in the Terms and Conditions.

 . . .  

To summarize this dense paragraph: simply by entering the competition, you are granting a sweeping, non-expiring license not just to Times Newspapers Limited (The Sunday Times' parent company), but also to Audible and any other licensees of TNL, to use your story or any part of it in any way they want, anywhere in the world, without payment to or permission from you. 

  . . . 

Read the entire article at:


Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Recent news from Writer Beware, canceled publishing contracts

Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware®

Last week, the SFWA Contracts Committee issued this advisory.
SFWA Contracts Committee Advisory on No-advance Contracts

Recently, SFWA's Contracts Committee was made aware of a situation in which a well-liked publisher canceled the publication of a number of books it had contracted to publish. The publisher said the decision was made because of "unexpected changes" at the company. The Committee has reviewed the contract in use, which lacked a provision for such a cancellation. The Committee believes that canceling a contracted book that satisfies the author’s obligations is at odds with the spirit of the contract. Making this situation worse is the fact that these were no-advance contracts. Because no advance was paid, the publisher could make this decision without financial penalties. The authors' books, were, in effect, put in limbo for many months and the authors received nothing but an apology. Besides depriving the authors of the ability to sell the books elsewhere during this delay and putting off any income from the books into the indefinite future, the authors careers suffer as a result.



Monday, August 26, 2019

Beware of book to screen services

It's tempting to pay a few bucks for a chance at having your book made into a movie, but don't go there. Dozens of scams have risen up, and they fail to deliver on their promises. I got this info from the Writer Beware blog:

Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware®

Selling film rights to Hollywood is among writers' most fevered dreams. And where there is something that writers want or need, there are always sharks waiting to take advantage.

The Hollywood book-to-screen "marketing" package was pioneered by Author Solutions, way back in the early 2000s. All the Author Solutions imprints offer it, including the imprints AS runs for publishers. Here's what the package looks like, from AS imprint Xlibris:



Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Help me go to the Philip K. Dick Festival

I need a little extra to fund my trip to Fort Morgan, Colorado, for the second Philip K. Dick Festival in August. Two years ago, a friend paid for everything to make it possible for me to attend the first PKD Festival. She used her airline miles to get my ticket, and she paid for the stay in a motel. This time, however, she isn't in a position to help.

This time, the Festival is providing a motel room for me, but I don't know if their budget allows for any additional  help. They are not wealthy people.

I have a GoFundMe already for repairs to my house, and a Paypal Me link, and I can also use Amazon gift cards to get supplies for the homemade jam that I sell.

Any help at all  is much appreciated.

for Amazon gift cards please use (also my Paypal)

or Paypal Me at

I also have snail mail at

Tessa Dick
PO Box 1942
Crestline, California 92325-1942



You can also buy my books.


Thursday, February 28, 2019

Looks like I'll have to give up my home

I've been looking into refinancing my house and getting a reverse mortgage, but it can't be done. I don't have enough income to qualify for a mortgage, and the house isn't worth enough to get a reverse mortgage. I can afford to stay here for two more years, and then I will have to sell the house. Not sure what I'll do then, but at least I have two years to figure it out. 

I tried to get approved for disability benefits, and I really do need them, but I keep getting denied. Other people shop for me, cook my meals and help me clean the house because I can't do those things any more, but the disability people seem to think that I can work. 

Meanwhile, you can help me with the usual monthly bills and home repairs with any donation, no matter how small. Fixing up the house will increase its value, which will help me to either get the reverse mortgage or sell the house more easily and for more money. 

Tessa Dick 
PO Box 1942
Crestline, CA 92325-1942 

And please buy my books and leave reviews on Amazon. 


You can also help me out with Paypal 


When a publisher claims copyright on edits of your work

from The Passive Voice. Read more at The Passive Voice. 

Posted: 26 Feb 2019 07:00 AM PST
From Writer Beware:
It’s not all that common, but I do see it from time to time in small press publishing contracts that I review: a publisher explicitly claiming ownership of the editing it provides, or making the claim implicitly by reverting rights only to the original manuscript submitted by the author.
Are there legal grounds for such a claim? One would think that by printing a copyright notice inside a published book, and registering copyright in the author’s name or encouraging the author to do so, publishers are acknowledging that there is not. It’s hard to know, though, because it doesn’t seem to have been tested in the courts. There’s not even much discussion of the issue. Where you do find people talking about it, it’s in the context of editors as independent contractors, such as how authors hiring freelancers should make sure they own the editor’s work product, or how freelance editors might use a claim of copyright interest as leverage in payment disputes.
In 2011, Romance Writers of America published a brief legal opinion on its website (still on the website, but unfortunately no longer accessible by the public), indicating that the claim would probably not prevail in court. But that’s the only legal discussion I’ve been able to find.
The legal ambiguity of a copyright claim on editing is good reason to treat it as a publishing contract red flag. But that’s not all.
It’s not standard industry practice. No reputable publisher that I know of, large or small, deprives the author of the right to re-publish the final edited version of their book, either in its contracts or upon rights reversion. One might argue that in pre-digital days, this wasn’t something publishers needed to consider–books, once reverted, were rarely re-published–whereas these days it’s common for authors to self-publish or otherwise bring their backlists back into circulation. But publishers haven’t been slow to lay claim to the new rights created by the digital revolution. If there were any advantage to preventing writers from re-publishing their fully-edited books, you can bet it would have become common practice. It hasn’t.
Link to the rest at Writer Beware 


Thursday, February 7, 2019

Art of NAOKI URASAWA at Japan House Los Angeles

Manga is a Japanese style of graphic novel, and now you can see some of the best examples of this style of art without leaving California. 

Press Release from Globe Newswire: 

JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles Presents North America Debut of “This is MANGA – The Art of NAOKI URASAWA” Exhibition Now Through March 28

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 07, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles is pleased to showcase “This is MANGA – The Art of NAOKI URASAWA,” a complimentary exhibit by internationally acclaimed Japanese manga artist, Naoki Urasawa, now through March 28. The retrospective exhibition introduces more than 400 original drawings and storyboards, selected stories from seven of his major works, and delivers four consecutive YAWARA! stories every other week replicating the weekly serial style of many Japanese comic anthologies. Selling over 127 million copies in Japan alone, Urasawa’s dynamic storytelling captivates a global audience as his works are published in more than 20 countries. Continuing to garner international popularity, the award-winning artist was recently nominated by Comic-Con International (Comic-Con) for the prestigious Will Eisner Comic Awards Hall of Fame for 2019. Final Hall of Fame inductees will be announced this summer.
Since his professional debut in 1983, Urasawa has continually pushed the limits of the manga medium, engaging readers with innovative compositional techniques and versatile drawing prowess, as he creates works that are both introspective and philosophical. One of the core qualities of Urasawa’s work is the skill with which he weaves social context and detailed cultural settings into his narratives. Many of his stories connect personal dramas to a specific moment in human history, and illustrate how overarching social and historical forces influence the actions of his characters. His stories touch upon the hopes, dreams, and underlying fears of humanity. The exhibition introduces manga, a Japanese comic style --which is a fusion of story and artwork, evolving from picture book styles developed in the late 19th century --directly through Urasawa’s manga including his original hand-drawn storyboards from inception through development. The selected stories from seven of his major works highlight the breadth of the artist’s narrative styles, including: YAWARA!, MONSTER, 20thCentury Boys, PLUTO (story by Osamu Tezuka, co-authored by Takashi Nagasaki, supervised by Macoto Tezka, with the cooperation of Tezuka Productions), BILLY BAT (story co-creator: Takashi Nagasaki), MASTER KEATON ReMASTER (story by Takashi Nagasaki), and MUJIRUSHI (The Sign of Dreams, with the cooperation of Fujio Productions). A special reading area stocked with full, published English translations turns the exhibition visit into a Japanese cultural experience.
Related ProgramsJAPAN HOUSE offers interactive drawing workshops complementing the North American debut of the “This is MANGA – The Art of NAOKI URASAWA” exhibition with Los Angeles-based animator and illustrator, MinoMiyabi, for all ages. Information to be released soon on
  • Compositions & Panel Layouts: “Koma-Wari” for Manga & Comics (February 9)
  • “Chara-Cature!” Your Caricature as a Manga Character (February 9)
  • Character Drawing for Kids! (March 2)
  • Elements of Character Designs for Manga & Comics (March 2)
“This is MANGA – the Art of NAOKI URASAWA” is presented and organized by JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles and The Yomiuri Shimbun; sponsored by Shimizu Octo; made possible in cooperation with N WOOD STUDIO, SHOGAKUKAN, KODANSHA, POMATO PRO., Yamato Global Logistics Japan, ANA, Bay Bridge Studio, AGASUS and VIZ Media; special assistance provided by Takashi Nagasaki, Kazuya Kudo, Hokusei Katsushika, Tezuka Productions Co. and Fujio Productions;  art direction by Kaitaro Kiuchi (POMATO PRO.);  curatorial support provided by St├ęphane Beaujean (Art Director of the Angoul├¬me International Comics Festival)
ABOUT JAPAN HOUSEJAPAN HOUSE is an innovative, worldwide project with three hubs, London, Los Angeles and Sao Paulo, conceived by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Kenya Hara is Chief Creative Director. It seeks to nurture a deeper understanding and appreciation of Japan in the international community. JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles occupies two floors at Hollywood & Highland. The 2nd floor features a gallery space and shop. The 5th floor hosts a Japanese restaurant, relaxing library, and event venue, along with spectacular views of Hollywood and Downtown Los Angeles. JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles offers a place of new discovery that transcends the physical and conceptual boundaries creating experiences that reflect the best of Japan through its spaces and diverse programs. 
Location: 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028


Sunday, February 3, 2019

Support my work on the Exegesis

Please support my work on the Exegesis of Philip K. Dick. I'm digging deep into his monumental stack of notes. I'm producing a summary and analysis of a reasonable length, which will be available in paperback and Kindle. In order to do this work, I need the luxury of time. With your help, my bills will be paid while I devote myself to this effort. Please donate one dollar or more through my link. You do not have to have a Paypal account to use it.

Paypal Me Tessa D 7

Thank you so much!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Harper's Bazaar UK story contest removes predatory rights clause

osted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware

Yesterday, a number of writers alerted me to this writing competition for UK authors:
Harper’s Bazaar has a proud tradition of publishing the very best in original literary fiction, including stories by Virginia Woolf, Thomas Hardy, Ali Smith and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Continuing this legacy, we are happy to launch our annual short-story competition once again, inviting published and non-published writers to follow in the footsteps of these literary greats.
The winner of this 2,500-word short story competition will receive a two-night stay at Brownber Hall, Yorkshire, along with "the chance to see their work published". The theme is "Liberty." Entry is free, and the competition is open until midnight on March 15, 2019.

Read the rest at Writer Beware 

Book Review: Mars Time-Project

 The Mars Time-Project, by Anthony N. Fucilla  Published 2019 by arima publishing Life on terraformed Mars is not e...