Monday, January 02, 2017

Is there a blacklist?

A colleague asked me the other day if I felt there is a blacklist in literary s-f against non-PC writers.

I replied I don't know, there's no way to tell for sure; that's the nature of a blacklist - it's a conspiracy.

I will say that before 2015, when I was a double Sad Puppy Hugo nominee, my rejections almost always included invitations to submit to that market again.

Now, that is very uncommon, and in fact almost all my rejections now end with "best of luck" or "good luck with your writing" - and no encouragement to submit again.

Of course, there is always the possibility my writing skills have declined in the past couple of years - but that would run counter to experience.

Being a glorified hobbyist in the field, it's not that big a deal to me. I really write for my own personal pleasure and the enjoyment of my fans. If I tried to make a living as a short story writer, I'd be as broke as Howard Waldrop.

Still, I'm left scratching my head, because the verbiage of the rejections I receive has definitely shifted, and wording of the various "good luck in your writing" observations is very consistent.


  1. Anonymous5:19 PM

    Day after the election, when I posted a picture of myself with a Trump hat, a famous editor of whom almost anyone would know her name, had her assistant message me to tell me how awful I am, that I'm not going to be invited to write in anthologies again, coupled with the threat that the publishing industry is small and word travels fast.

    Blackballing is real. But you are not alone.

  2. Mr. Antonelli, you've invested a lot of time and effort in cementing your reputation as a fucking asshole. After what you did to Carrie Cuinn, do you really think editors' failure to include 'we'd like to see more of your stuff' notes in your rejection slips has more to do with a Shadowy Cabal of Evil SJWs than… say… a number of editors independently coming to the conclusion that they'd really rather not work with a fucking asshole who has already set up one of his editors for abuse after said editor did something the asshole didn't like?

    Actions have consequences, Mr. Antonelli. Even the actions of 'right-thinking' people like yourself. Or did you think the Pups had an exemption from Galatians 6:7?

  3. Cuinn's characterization of what happened, when and why is false, but there is a certain culpability on my part because of my even mentioning it. If you or any of your asshole chums ever went back and read what I originally said, you'll see I meant it as a cautionary tale. She took it the wrong way, and everyone accepted her version and take on it - but then again there's no arguing with a lynch mob. She claimed she received death threats, which everyone takes as face value because - Puppies.

    You and pricks like you were just out for blood, and there was no way you would listen to the actual facts and narrative. I was just the villain, rather than the victim of a mistake or misunderstanding. And when I tried to defend myself, you bastards screamed louder for my blood and my head.

    You are an anonymous prick and a coward. Cuinn may be in the end just neurotic, but you're stupid and evil, to keep repeating an old lie.

  4. You may have meant it as a cautionary tale, but you added her personal information into the email from Cuinn that you posted publicly, and then were surprised and doubtful when she was attacked.

    I was one of the people who felt your apology about trying to set up Gerrold was sincere, and that you deserved forgiveness, just as anyone else who recognizes they hurt someone, apologizes, and tries to do better does, but then you "accidentally" released the contact information of an editor who didn't feel comfortable working with you, given your history of harassing your internet enemies (Aaron and David Gerrold). Maybe you truly did make a mistake that time, but it's hard to keep forgiving abusive behavior.

    You tried to get Aaron fired over an internet fight.
    You called the police on David Gerrold because you "thought he was a threat."
    You "accidentally" sic'd your fans on an editor who rejected your work because she was worried about your abusive behavior.

    1. Including the information from Cuinn's e-mail was a careless mistake, but nobody believes me.

      Aaron Pound does not have the right to attack his political enemies while on government time.

      And I WAS afraid of what might happen because of the atmosphere Gerrold created.

      So what's the difference, eh? I'm not going to get a fair shake from certain people. I'm just happy doing my own thing. It's a big world and there's plenty of space for everyone to find their bliss (as Joseph Campbell used to say).

      People who actually know me say I'm good-natured and easy to get along with. The Internet is not the real world, although to the extent it unleashes peoples' worst nature and brings people together who really don't need to know one another, it makes the real world worse.

      I grew up a poor kid of immigrant parents, I'm used to being treated like crap by those more privileged or respectable. I'm 60 years old, it doesn't bother me that much.

      Which is not to say it doesn't hurt, and if when in pain I do stupid or thoughtless things, I'm sorry, but it's hard to control. If someone stabs you in the back, you don't go, "Dang! Not again!" You shout and lash out.

      I guess I'd rather feel pain than be as cold-blooded as so many people in the world. The world needs people who are passionate about something, anything!

      That's my sermon for today...


Latest reviews

"It’s possible that you haven’t run into the stories of Lou Antonelli. Since 2003, he’s been publishing delightful short tales of alternate history all over the nooks and crannies of the SF world. Thanks to Fantastic Books, we now have 28 of these little gems in one place. "Many of Antonelli’s stories have an unexpected twist ending. And many of them are what he calls “secret history” stories, which aren’t exactly alternate history—they’re set in our familiar history, but there’s always some element that contemporary observers missed. " -

- Don Sakers, The Reference Library, Analog July-Aug. 2014

A better path develops for a distraught man in “Double Exposure” by Lou Antonelli (debut 6/11 and reviewed by Frank D). Jake is about to end it all. He has been trying to keep his high maintenance wife happy for decades and has needed to embezzle to satisfy her spending habits. Now, on the verge of indictment and abandoned by his spouse, he buys a gun. Before he pulls the trigger, he spies a Kodak one-day photo hut. Curious, he pulls up to the window. They are holding pictures of him and his last girlfriend from 30 years before. The package is a lot thicker than it should be. Double Exposure” is listed as an Alternative History story but I would classify it as a Magical Realism tale. It is set as a second chance tale, a look into a life that should have been. The author is inspired by his memories of the old photo huts (I remember them) and of their disappearance. A cool idea (photos of another life), one that I could imagine would make for a great anthology.

- Frank Dutkiewicz, Diabolical Plots

“Great White Ship”: A traveler stuck waiting for a flight strikes up a conversation with an old airline employee. The Old Timer tells him a story of a Great White Airship that arrives from a most unusual destination. The story of a craft from an alternate reality and how it got there is only the precursor to the final act. This is one of my favorite stories from this site. I have a great passion for lighter-than-air craft and their potential as a future means of transport, which opens the story. The author uses this speculation to launch into an engaging tale. As fascinating as the main story line is, the alternate history premise that accompanies it is just as worthwhile. This story was well written and very well thought out. It is well worth the read. Recommended.

- James Hanzelka, Diabolical Plots

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