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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Dear, oh dear

And you see, even if I wasn't opposed to fake reviews, the following is why, in this case, they are not only wrong and deceptive, but redundant. There will be no shortage of legitimate one-star reviews by Scalzi fans who feel let down by his latest effort, particularly since it is the result of nearly two years of groundless hype.
Half a novel. Don't bother.
March 25, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase

I've enjoyed Scalzi's work enough that I pre-ordered this novel. Having read it (and enjoyed what there was of it) I feel profoundly cheated.

The problem has nothing to do with length -- plenty of excellent complete novels have been written in fewer pages. Here though, critical elements of the story are left undeveloped at the end of the novel. I don't want to spoil what there is of the plot, so suffice it to say that there are no meaningufl resolutions of conflicts facing any of the main characters except, I suppose, for the one who dies and another relatively minor villian. The resolution of the only interesting plot question that is revealed is blindingly obvious half way through the book. So no payoff there either.

I have no objection to setting a plot line that sets up a sequel. The series seems to be almost an imperative in sci-sfi publishing these days. But that's quite different from a novel that basically ends with a "to be continued" on all fronts that anyone cares about.
As for the fake good reviews, why, the more the better! The more people who fall for the deception and buy the shlockfest, the more disgusted Scalzi-haters there will be. Remember, even I once fell for "the new Heinlein" hype too.

The problem Tor Books faces is simple. Sooner or later, the truth will out. And the truth is that John Scalzi is a mediocre and derivative midlister who has only reached "major" status in science fiction as a result of his own deceptive self-marketing combined with the extraordinary marketing efforts made on his behalf by Patrick Nielsen Hayden. Scalzi has a legitimate fan base, but it is much smaller than Larry Correia's; imagine how many books Larry would sell if he was being featured in Audible advertising, having fake New York Times bestseller slots arranged for him, and talked up by Tor-published contributors at the Guardian, then featured in puff pieces in the New York Times, and NPR.

Pity poor Brandon Sanderson, who actually is a major SF author and outsells Scalzi by a significant margin, but doesn't get one-tenth the attention or support from his publisher that Scalzi does. That's the price of working with an SJW-converged publisher. They will always put their political agenda ahead of their professional responsibilities.

Anyhow, I'd assumed Scalzi would need to "restructure" his contract after delivering the fourth book. In light of this disaster, he's probably going to have to do so after he fails to deliver the second book on time and Macmillan finally discovers that PNH has sold them a midlister in major's clothing.

In any event, Johan Kalsi and I would like to thank you all for making his debut with Castalia House such an unforgettable one. ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED? Mr. Kalsi is already hard at work on the sequel to Corrosion, which will be entitled Corrosion and Empire, and eagerly awaits the announcement from Tor Books concerning the direction of his next new series. And I have to say, perhaps the most amusing thing in all this, to me, is the angry, upset SF-SJWs who are unaware that this little stunt is literally nothing new in the science fiction world; it should hardly surprise anyone that the current publisher of There Will Be War would be aware of the various, perfectly legitimate, marketing possibilities in this regard.

There is more at Castalia House. Including, but not limited, to this video commentary.

Labels: , ,

80 Comments:

Blogger DAMN SON March 26, 2017 2:04 PM  

is that the fucking daily dose in the corner

Anonymous ruinor March 26, 2017 2:11 PM  

One star reviews can be legitimate... when it is the books of your opposition that are being reviewed. Cute.

His novel is still selling much better than Castalia's little stunt.

Blogger KSC March 26, 2017 2:15 PM  

@2
Get out of here, troll.

Anonymous Looking Glass March 26, 2017 2:20 PM  

Corrosion should also be actually profitable. You know, the point of business ventures.

Blogger VD March 26, 2017 2:28 PM  

His novel is still selling much better than Castalia's little stunt.

It's selling better. But not that much better. Certainly not a one-thirteenth share of a $3 million advance better. The mere fact that you have to make the comparison demonstrates what a massive success it was.

I guarantee that Corrosion sold a much higher percentage of Collapsing's sales than There Won't Be War sold of There Will Be War's sales, or than John Scalzi is Not A Popular Author While I Myself Am Quite Popular did of SJWAL's sales.

But we would have been quite happy with it even if it had only sold 10 copies. The results considerably exceeded our expectations, in terms of sales and SJW butthurt.

Anonymous Schneida March 26, 2017 2:28 PM  

Ayy lmao, Vox has got you comparing Scalzi's dreck with his joke book. That's called "setting the terms of the debate," fool.

Anonymous Crew March 26, 2017 2:37 PM  

Whowever did the cover for There Won't Be War knew nothing about physics.

Anonymous A Most Deplorable Paradigm Is More Than Twenty Cents March 26, 2017 2:38 PM  

What would happen to the heads of all those SJW fans of Tolkhein if they were to find and read a copy of the old Harvard Lampoon work, Bored of the Rings? Splodey much?

"The water lapped at Frito's thighs. 'Sure is a queer river'".

Blogger Cail Corishev March 26, 2017 2:40 PM  

The fans of a headliner of a major genre publisher, whose books are given prominent display in bookstores, are now bragging that he's outselling a book by an unknown author published as a stunt by a tiny competitor with zero shelf space. Amazing.

Blogger Jack Ward March 26, 2017 2:41 PM  

Am almost finished reading Corrosion and will certainly buy the second Corrosion and Empire. Now, where have heard of something like that?
Truth tell I didn't know what to expect of this parody of a derivative. I'm still a fan of the original Foundation series, the original three, that is.
Corrosion: You can see the derivative elements if you look hard but, the concept is really fresh and original enough you think this could be no derivative. Thoughtful plot that hides derivative status quite well. And, you can see that it was writen quickly;not perfect a book but certainly close enough for my likes. I expect the second one will be given more time and effort who the heck or whom the heck wrote it. Would not surprise me given the success of Corrosion that book one might be rewritten perhaps to coincide with the release of Corrosion and Empire.
I suppose I could feel sad for Scalzi but won't waste the emotional time and effort.

Blogger YIH March 26, 2017 2:43 PM  

There will be no shortage of legitimate one-star reviews by Scalzi fans.
No doubt, that's what got me about this.
It was also a 'blind' ''fake review'', there was no possible way (by the dates) Weasley Crusher could have even read Scalzi's latest word processor fart.
It was just plain ass kissing.

Anonymous Looking Glass March 26, 2017 2:47 PM  

@5 VD

Hrmm... what scale do we measure "SJW Butthurt" on?

Oh, I know. We can do it like the Scoville Scale. Call it the Scalzi Scale.

Not quite sure the grading we want to go, but being on the receiving end of #Based Stickman's Flag of Justice is at least Over 9000 Scalzis.

That puts Corrosion's launch around 5000 Scalzis.

Getting burned by Trump on Twitter is at least 100,000 Scalzis.

Getting burned by Trump on national TV is 1,000,000 scalzis. Let's set that as our baseline there.

Capturing Shia's flag is at least 20,000 Scalzis.

Fun times! (Yup, and since he's McRapey, it's a "how badly did they get raped?" scale. :) )

Blogger Nick S March 26, 2017 2:54 PM  

Scalzi should be more circumspect when choosing his enemies.

Blogger Franz Lyonheart March 26, 2017 3:03 PM  

Remember, even I once fell for "the new Heinlein" hype too.

Exactly like me. And via Scalzi's first (and entertaining, not yet having read the original) novel, OMW, and via his poor (utterly unentertaining) sequels,....

... like so many other SF readers....

... I found my way here, and never looked back. Other than in disgust. Or when our esteemed host publishes yet another take-down or ridicule of the Tor-Hayden-Scalzi cabal (I love these. Keep publishing more of these please!)


Johan Kalsi and I would like to thank you all for making his debut with Castalia House such an unforgettable one.

You're welcome. Very.


Infinity Engine
Neal Asher


Now there's a Tor author that would be worthy of poaching to the Castalia House. I've read lots of Asher, and I'm getting withdrawal symptoms. You know, because of the Tor boycott. Can we not pull Neal over to the Good Side?


Blogger Benjamin Kraft March 26, 2017 3:07 PM  

Very much agreed about Sanderson. He's quite literally the only reason I've ever read any Tor books, and was my favorite fiction author for quite a while.

Blogger Franz Lyonheart March 26, 2017 3:08 PM  

Whowever did the cover for There Won't Be War knew nothing about physics.

Now that you mention it..... Spot on! Lol, once you've seen it, you cannot unsee it.

That title pic is a fairly obvious rip-off of the famous docking scene in 2001 A Space Odyssey. Which the cover artist patently didn't understand, and ripped off wrong.

Funny and good catch!

Blogger Benjamin Kraft March 26, 2017 3:12 PM  

@7. Crew, which part are you referring to? The fact that the biodomes are upside down? That the visible support struts are backward? That the shuttle is docked by its nose?

I guess at least they docked the shuttle in the middle...

Blogger Snidely Whiplash March 26, 2017 3:34 PM  

YIH wrote:It was also a 'blind' ''fake review'', there was no possible way (by the dates) Weasley Crusher could have even read Scalzi's latest word processor fart.

It was just plain ass kissing.

Wheaton did the audio book. He can prove he read the book before release, it's right there on Audible.

Blogger JaimeInTexas March 26, 2017 3:40 PM  

What would it take for Castalia to Sanderson to publish with Castalia?

Anonymous Peter #0231 March 26, 2017 3:41 PM  

@13:

Long-term thinking isn't one of Johnny Lawn's strong suits...

Anonymous BBGKB March 26, 2017 3:41 PM  

The problem has nothing to do with length You have to get used to telling leftists this.

Whowever did the cover for There Won't Be War knew nothing about physics.

Perhaps they have artificial gravity and the ring isn't spinning.

Blogger AJ March 26, 2017 3:44 PM  

Also probably cause Sanderson is a mormon, can't have some pesky religious nut be the star of a converged entity like Tor.

Anonymous BBGKB March 26, 2017 4:00 PM  

OT: Shitlibs move illegals into FAKE Churches cuz 2011 ICE policy directive telling agents to avoid "sensitive areas" such as churches, hospitals and schools.
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_AUSTIN_SANCTUARY?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2017-03-25-09-09-20
#MAGA #SealTheBorder

Blogger Silly But True March 26, 2017 4:05 PM  

@ruinor...
"His novel is still selling much better than Castalia's little stunt."

As has been noted: kek. Kek kek kek.

You fucking dumbasses.

I'm quite sure it Tor's goals were likely loftier than "outselling Castalia's little stunt."

That that's (barely) the case - and certainly not in terms of percent return on sales - was really the point. You have no idea how bad things are for you and your kind.

Blogger Cataline Sergius March 26, 2017 4:13 PM  

I took a quick look.

There Won't Be War, November 1991 TOR books.

out of print

$0.99

PNH's golden touch was making itself felt even then.

Poor old Patrick. He's never really worked at any place other than TOR. I mean yes, he did labor in the fanzine mines and do associate editor crap but TOR is it for him.

It's been his home for thirty years. He has no idea how to survive without it. TOR isn't his job, it's his identity. He is a (very minor somebody) in the City because he can claim the title of publisher.

But the thing is he isn't half the man, of the guy who founded it. Tom Doherty knew real, authentic talent when he spotted it. He could spot it and he could develop it into something big.

Actually, authentically big.

Robert Jordan and Orson Scott Card among others.

The only guy PNH has discovered since taking the reins is John Scalzi. I suspect part of his need to drape Scalzi in the trappings of success, is his own over investment in him.

That HUGE advance was mostly a silly publicity stunt to prop up the both of them.

When Scalzi fails, Patrick fails.

Blogger Michael Maier March 26, 2017 4:13 PM  

.............. What the HELL did I just watch?

Anonymous Nathan March 26, 2017 4:17 PM  

@25,

Don't forget Charlie Jane Anders, who is now being touted above Scalzi as PNH's most important discovery, interestingly only after being one of Gawker's anti-Puppy attack dogs.

Anonymous Longtime Lurker March 26, 2017 4:17 PM  

Scalzi is pushing his luck with the TV-style cliffhanger fomat, especially because Collapsing is not a serialized product with a reasonable delay between suspense and resolution. This is compounded by the fact that Scalzi now has a well deserved reputation for tardiness. Which means his fans may have to wait until 2019 to see how Collapsing turns out.

Blogger APL March 26, 2017 4:32 PM  

Completely off topic and likely irrelevant but I have taken a virulent dislike to the term: "pre-ordered".

Just sayin'.

Blogger seeingsights March 26, 2017 4:35 PM  

'Pity poor Brandon Sanderson, who actually is a major SF author and outsells Scalzi by a significant margin, but doesn't get one-tenth the attention or support from his publisher that Scalzi does.'

I looked at the ratings and reviews for Brandon Sanderson's books at goodreads. Wow. His books have much more ratings, and clearly a higher average rating, than Scalzi's. And also keep in mind that goodreads reviewers lean more to the left than Amazon reviews, and to the general population. Under-employed liberal arts/social studies majors review there.

Blogger Cataline Sergius March 26, 2017 4:39 PM  

I watched a writers workshop with Nick Cole a couple of nights ago.

Nick is of the opinion that in long term Scalzi would have made much more money publishing on Amazon.

Blogger Basil Makedon March 26, 2017 4:44 PM  

There is a huge mistake in the posted video -- not enough Air Horn. If you make a video like that, it is Federal Law (See 18 USC 666) that you have to have lots of Air Horn.

I did stop laughing from earlier this week, but my sides are still sore. This whole thing has been Top Keks.

Blogger Skyler the Weird March 26, 2017 5:03 PM  

[Scalzi is pushing his luck with the TV-style cliffhanger fomat, especially because Collapsing is not a serialized product with a reasonable delay between suspense and resolution. This is compounded by the fact that Scalzi now has a well deserved reputation for tardiness. Which means his fans may have to wait until 2019 to see how Collapsing turns out.]

Or he might find out as Weiss and Hickman did with their STARSHIELD trilogy in the Late Nineties, if it doesn't sell they can cancel your contract.

Blogger The Kurgan March 26, 2017 5:09 PM  

Maybe there won't be war because all the people splat on the inside of the dome?

Blogger Silly But True March 26, 2017 5:29 PM  

HWould Amazon be amenable to helicopter rides for fake reviewers next?

Blogger Jew613 March 26, 2017 5:34 PM  

I'm reading the Corroding Empire now, I know this started as a joke, but the book is actually really good.

So what happens when Tor realizes what a train wreck they've signed onto with the collapsing empire? At some point they need to turn a profit, do they force Scalzi to pay back the advance? What if he's spent it already?

Anonymous Man of the Atom March 26, 2017 5:37 PM  

@36 Jew613.

He hasn't spent it. He "invested" it, in the Lawn.

Blogger VD March 26, 2017 5:46 PM  

So what happens when Tor realizes what a train wreck they've signed onto with the collapsing empire? At some point they need to turn a profit, do they force Scalzi to pay back the advance

They already know. They're just trying to get rid of the excess inventory at this point. That's why the prices were cut on the preorders, and why they're already 20 percent off in the bookstores on release.

He'll never have to repay whatever portion of the advance he's received. But the publishers now cut their advances into three and even four tranches, signing, delivery and acceptance, and publication.

However, the chances are the signing portions are relatively small, so Tor probably isn't in so deep that they can't afford to avoid their future losses. The bigger problem for them is opportunity cost; it's not making them much money and they're have to spend a lot to market a known dog.

PNH doesn't care; he's tied to Scalzi until the end. So, nothing will happen until Macmillan runs the numbers and doesn't want such a small return on so much investment. At $260k per book just for the rights, that's a lot of new authors they aren't publishing, developing, or marketing.

Blogger Silly But True March 26, 2017 5:47 PM  

@Skylar: "Or he might find out as Weiss and Hickman did with their STARSHIELD trilogy in the Late Nineties, if it doesn't sell they can cancel your contract."

That was business. Pure and simple. Unlike SJW -- who will always double down.

Anonymous Steve March 26, 2017 5:50 PM  

Don't forget Charlie Jane Anders, who is now being touted above Scalzi as PNH's most important discovery

Maybe he just has a thing for men in dresses. Would explain his wife.

Blogger Brian Niemeier March 26, 2017 5:59 PM  

@Cataline: Nick is right.

Based on Scalzi's $3.4 million, 13 book contract, his total advances for Collapsing Empire amount to roughly $250k.

Bear in mind, he doesn't see a cent in royalties until his share of sales revenue earns out the advance. It's likely that Tor basketed all of the books in the series, in which case we're not talking about Scalzi having to earn out $250k, but the combined advances for multiple books, possibly up to the full $3.4 million, before he gets his first royalty check.

Compounding Scalzi's woes is the very low probability that Vox pointed out of the current contract surviving past book 4. Advances are customarily paid in multiple chunks: at signing, on acceptance of the final manuscript, and upon release of the book. You can see how early cancellation will significantly reduce that initial $3.4 mil figure.

But the royalty rate is still important right now, because it determines how quickly Scalzi earns out. The standard rates for boilerplate New York publishing contracts is 25% of net for eBooks, which actually gets the author 12.5% of gross. That's before agent fees, btw. We'll give Scalzi more, though, since Tor really likes him--say, 25% of gross. That means his royalty on each eBook sold at $13 is $3.25. Considering how deeply Tor is discounting the hardcover, he's probably making close to the same royalty on that.

At that rate, earning out just the $250k advance for CE will take Scalzi a year. That's if his sales remain at their current level.

The question that an author who's more concerned with getting paid than status and validation will ask himself at this point is, "How long will it take me to beat the contract if I self-publish through Amazon?"

KDP pays authors a 70% royalty on eBooks priced between $2.99 and $9.99. Scalzi's brand is strong enough that he could sell well at $9.99, earning him $7 on each copy sold. Going this route, he would beat Tor's contract for CE in less than six months. The book then keeps earning 70% royalties forever, along with each new book in the series.

Guys like Brandon Sanderson know this, which is why it won't be surprising to hear him announce his departure from Tor in the near future.

It's also why we can rightly say that Johan Kalsi is earning more in royalties--Castalia House compensates authors fairly--than Scalzi is getting paid for Collapsing Empire each month.

Blogger Franz Lyonheart March 26, 2017 5:59 PM  

Maybe he just has a thing for men in dresses. Would explain his wife.

Steve you're slacking.

Blogger Dave March 26, 2017 6:05 PM  

they're have to spend a lot to market a known dog.

They're also spending $$ to send Scalzi around the country for book signings or readings or whatever. Although I wonder about his accommodations as he tweeted last week that someone was playing a boombox outside his hotel room. Yes, he tweeted "boombox"

Anonymous a deplorable rubberducky March 26, 2017 6:05 PM  

I bought _The Corroding Empire_ for the fun, thinking it was a throwaway novel. But I, too, started reading it and found that it's pretty good, in fact. Far exceeds expectations. It can stand on its own outside of this Scalzi kerfuffle.

I haven't read anything except for the published excerpts from Scalzi's "opus", but from what I can tell _Corroding_ stomps its guts out on the literary level.

Lovin' it!

Anonymous Steve March 26, 2017 6:09 PM  

Franz - Ouch. Is that what I've been doing to people's eyeballs all these years?

Thank you for not posting pictures of Mrs Nielsen Hayden though. I don't think it'd mix well with my flu medication.

Anonymous Steve March 26, 2017 6:11 PM  

Dave - the cool kids call them "ghetto blasters".

Blogger Silly But True March 26, 2017 6:12 PM  

"...Yes, he tweeted "boombox..."

What does one expect from self-avowed rapist, sexist, racist, and several flavors of crazy John Scalzi.

Blogger VD March 26, 2017 6:26 PM  

The standard rates for boilerplate New York publishing contracts is 25% of net for eBooks, which actually gets the author 12.5% of gross. That's before agent fees, btw. We'll give Scalzi more, though, since Tor really likes him--say, 25% of gross.

He's not. You don't get more money and higher royalties.

It's also why we can rightly say that Johan Kalsi is earning more in royalties--Castalia House compensates authors fairly--than Scalzi is getting paid for Collapsing Empire each month.

That's part of Tor's problem. Scalzi is getting pre-paid for these books. Given the low probability any book will earn out, his primary motivation is to make sure Tor doesn't kill the contract. Which, apparently, is insufficient to permit him to deliver a decent book on time.

Now he has to deliver THREE this year. The chances of them being delivered are slim enough, the chances of any of them being any good are considerably more remote.

None of this is a surprise. You will note that I said I expected the contract to be "renegotiated" after Book Four was delivered. Now it would not surprise me if it happened sooner. They'll try to keep it as quiet as possible, of course; word may not leak for months after the fact. But it's hard to imagine a scenario where that doesn't happen at this point.

I'm not at all surprised that Scalzi cracked under pressure. I've seen it happen in the game industry many times. It is much, much easier to perform when there aren't literally millions of dollars riding on your decisions and your self-discipline, no one is paying attention to you, and all that failure costs you is time.

Blogger seeingsights March 26, 2017 6:31 PM  

PNH doesn't show great editorial judgment. Instead of promoting Scalzi, PNH should have offered books deals to Andy Weir and Hugh Howey . Andy Weir and Hugh Howey achieved great success self-publishing their science fiction through Amazon.

PNH also should have used all the money thats promoting Scalzi to promote Brandon Sanderson instead. PNH could have touted a "fantasy novel boom" with Sanderson mentioned in the same breath as George R.R. Martin, Neil Gaiman, and others.

Anonymous Mr. Jealous March 26, 2017 6:32 PM  

How long before the hack known as Scalzi breaks down and gets a ghost writer?

Blogger Jose March 26, 2017 6:33 PM  

Please be understanding!

Scalzi had to take Asimov's book promoting the benefits central planning by an self-designated enlightened minority of intellectuals and turn it into a cultural marxist piece. This Herculean task, akin to preparing tea given boiling water, a container, and a tea bag, tasked Scalzi's vast mental abilities so much that he needed to postpone thinking about thread closure to an unspecified future date.

The cliffhanger ending allows him to use the same technique as many TV series that find themselves painted into a corner at the end of a season: "to be continued" followed by "show cancelled."

Speaking of upcoming books, is there a date for NOWHITHER yet?

Anonymous Mr. Jealous March 26, 2017 6:40 PM  

If Scalzi's next book is on time, shows a modicum of literary skill, and isn't entirely derivative, you can bet he's farming out his name a la James Patterson. Not sure why he hasn't gone that direction anyway. He's clearly more interested in mouthing off on Twitter than learning his craft, reading and digestion the science fiction field, and/or producing work.

Blogger Silly But True March 26, 2017 6:49 PM  

@VD: "Now he has to deliver THREE this year."

Self-fulfilling prophecy: At that point he's very nearly competing with Corrosion's schedule.

Maybe these comparisons between he and top genetecist and 6'-3" ex-Finnish marine Kalsi are apt after all.

Blogger VD March 26, 2017 6:56 PM  

PNH doesn't show great editorial judgment.

No, Tor Books has missed out on every single major SF/F fiction franchise since Orson Scott Card and Robert Jordan.

Blogger KSC March 26, 2017 7:57 PM  

The phenomenon of author's taking longer and longer between releases has increased dramatically in the last five or six years, and I'm not sure why. It rarely bodes well of the quality of the work, either, putting the lie to the idea that "they just take more time as they gain more experience and their work grows more complex."

Anonymous Hesiod March 26, 2017 8:37 PM  

<*Pewdiepie*>Damn, I recognized Reality!<*/Pewdiepie*>

Anonymous Eric the Red March 26, 2017 8:49 PM  

Scalzi should invest his advance on Alaskan oil futures. That way, when Tor wants to take it back, he'll at least get to keep his lawn... or whatever.

Blogger Ken March 26, 2017 9:09 PM  

Sanderson is the only author I would admit to buying from TOR.

I will say that I went to used bookstores and bought all of the "Sword of Truth" series by Goodkind, but those books...I mean, it's intriguing that TOR would even publish a series that is so blatantly a tribute to Ayn Rand - there's an entire plotline that basically calls socialism and SJW bullshit to be degrading to the human soul - but it can be tedious.

In my opinion, out of 12 books, the only good ones were 1, 2, and 6.

But yes, tangent aside, getting Sanderson with Castalia would be a huge win. (and Brent Weeks and Jonathan Renshaw...)

Anonymous Mr. Helpful March 26, 2017 9:09 PM  

Scalzi should team up with George Rape Rape Martin and Davey Gerrold. Finish up all three series as a group project.

"The Game of Collapsing Thrones of the Chtorr!"

I'm sure they could reach consensus and it would be awesome!

Anonymous VFM #6306 March 26, 2017 9:12 PM  

An SJW attempting to queersplain "victory conditions?"

What is the correct retort in their language? My 'tarded SJW is a bit rusty.

Ah, yes. I have it.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. ADORABLE. OH HONEY. OH.

Sincerely, the boxer. You have my condolences on your absent father. No child should have to grow up that way.

Good luck overcoming your Imposter Syndrome. Stay brave!

Blogger Happy LP9 March 26, 2017 9:16 PM  

Well, this is great; Alexa is a Amazon owned outlet, that must be noted and the fake reviews will continue from what we are notating.

I suggest Amazon is addressing this matter to the fullest extent of the policies they prescribe.

Amazon always treat me great, I don't believe they are against Vox Day or Castalia House at all, they are aware of what is happening. There are some issues to address and they are working on it.

Castalia House is a (non) threat to the gatekeepers as genxers; hardworking professional brilliantly talented authors signed with Castalia House NOT THEM the absurdist oppositional to adverse publishers that we dont want to read EVER.

Johnny's cheating readers to deceptions and his crowd are seeping out misery/defeatism like a civ of nonsense.

Really; I expect John S's reply very soon, he will be singing like a canary.

Blogger Happy LP9 March 26, 2017 9:17 PM  

59 They probably already did, awful content. Castalia House is SUPERIOR reading. I cannot load my Kindle with enough to read I am ripping through over 100 books per year, reading is adorable.

Anonymous A Deplorable Paradigm Is More Than Twenty Cents March 26, 2017 9:21 PM  

OT
Catholic archdiocese of Mexico declares that Mexican companies expressing interest in building the Trump wall are betraying their country.

The editorial's title is Treason against the Homeland". Somehow I do not think this is a misquote.

So the Roman Catholic hierarchy in Mexico is fully in line with at least half of the Pope's agenda.

Blogger dh March 26, 2017 10:26 PM  

They're also spending $$ to send Scalzi around the country for book signings or readings or whatever. Although I wonder about his accommodations as he tweeted last week that someone was playing a boombox outside his hotel room. Yes, he tweeted "boombox"
They are doing it on the cheap. He loves to post pictures of where he's staying. My guess is soemone in booking at Tor has a well used Expedia account and sorts by price. Maybe he has a "3-star" clause or something, but it's all basically middle-tier business traveler hotels.

Typical business travel, including airfare and hotels and per diem for food, costs in the ballpark of $2k a week right now, with some regional and seasonable variably. NYC is double, Omaha is a third less.

A six-week book tour isn't costing them a huge amount of money. I sort of would like to see a ledger on the entire event. I wonder what the ROI is on a push like that.

Blogger AgentBJ March 26, 2017 11:47 PM  

Those two series are the sole reason I give TOR the time of day anymore.

Blogger Dave March 26, 2017 11:57 PM  

I thought this review by Grandma Books was very good. Once or twice she started to meander but she recovered quickly.

5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth my time. Glad I bought it.
By Grandma Books on March 26, 2017
Verified Purchase

Corrosion/The Corroding Empire-
Reviews on this one are all over the map, unless you remove all the dishonest reviews by people who refused to read it because they hate the publishing company or the editor.
First, let's get a couple things out of the way. This is not parody. It's pastiche.
"Pastiche
A pastiche is a work of visual art, literature, theatre, or music that imitates the style or character of the work of one or more other artists. Unlike parody, pastiche celebrates, rather than mocks, the work it imitates."

Vox Day likes to tweak John Scalzi, John Scalzi is ridiculously easy to tweak.
Scalzi had a big, expensive book contract to deliver a book which was going to be roughly based on Isaac Asimov's old Foundation series- not plagiarism, not a copy, just along that style and world.
Vox Day said, essentially, 'anything you can do, I can do better.' Or somebody can. And he found an author willing and able to do better, they settled on a pen-name which sufficiently parodied Scalzi's, and Day edited the book and the publishing house he works for published it, and Scalsi and/or Tor publishing and/or their friends and comrades scuttling in the back alleyways of Amazon got that book taken down from Amazon based on dishonest 'complaints' and accusations of plagiarism and confusion. Castalia House went up the chain at Amazon and the higher ups placed the book for sale again, and four more times somebody much, much lower in the food chain (and I mean that) at Amazon removed the book, even turning off the settings that would allow others selling the book second hand to be paid. It was petty, spiteful, childish, dishonest, and stupid, and it's the main reason why I bought the book. I had been following the backstory but wasn't going to purchase the book because right now, spending five dollars to perpetuate a joke is not in my budget. However, spending five dollars to push back against that kind of dishonesty and a stupid, selfish, petulant attempt to keep honest workers from being paid? That's in the budget if I give up a week's supply of American comfort foods, and so I did. It turns out the only 'parody' part is really in the author's pen-name, the story is not a parody.


cont'd

Blogger Dave March 26, 2017 11:58 PM  

Grandma Books review (cont'd)

However, I really didn't expect to give it more than a 3 star rating and I was very pleasantly surprised. The book is really fun but quite serious sci-fi. It's funny because it's witty, and there are a number of meta-references and in-jokes for sci-fi geeks and nerds. I am pretty sure I didn't even get half of them. Mystery Science 2000 (and 3000) fans, there is a sentient robot named Servo. Need I say more?

Probably. The humour is largely in the first half of the book. It is not screamingly, laugh out loud funny, it's understated, subtle, and very, very clever. The story is intriguing and behind the main plot and woven within it there is much to think about. But the first half is also just a genuinely fun read, a really engaging and interesting read which I would totally have missed if it had not been for the shenanigans of the Scalzi crowd. So silly of them.
Here's how engaging it is- part of the story involves something called alg0-decay, a problem of unknown origin, but it's causing various systems in this culture (which based on bioengineered technology) to periodically get strange glitches or to utterly breakdown. I was reading very late at night. I finished an intense chapter detailing a farmer dealing with systemic wide algo-decay, and went to sleep. A few hours later I was awakened by the sound of our electricity going off (it's really hot where I live and the air conditioner stopping wakes us up instantly) I drowsily thought to myself, 'oh, drat, more algo-decay.' and then woke up more fully into my own world. Kind of cool when a book does world building that well, isn't it?

You'll notice that I refer specifically to the first half of the book. I don't know if half is the precise dividing point, but a dividing point there is. The first part is a really fun romp. The book is still a very good read in the second half, a solid four stars IMO, but it gets more complicated and more serious. A couple of the later chapters were confusing to me. You need to keep track of the timeline and watch the dates given in the chapter headings. At the end of the book you will need to transfer the message from ASCII code to English (copy and paste in any of several online translators which will do that for free), and keep in mind this is the first in a series. It does not end in a cliff-hanger per se. It does end in a 'to be continued.' Foundation was a series, after all.
I'm going to be rereading this one, and I will probably buy the sequel when it comes out.

Blogger David Crader March 27, 2017 12:29 AM  

Your book got flagged by Amazon for ripping off Scalzi's cover??? Let's see... OMG!!! They're RIGHT!!! A Sci-Fi book has never before been published with a spaceship on the cover!!!

Anonymous Mr. Rational March 27, 2017 1:02 AM  

VD wrote:Tor Books has missed out on every single major SF/F fiction franchise since Orson Scott Card and Robert Jordan.
I'm actually considering shopping my book and the outlines for the rest of the trilogy, plus some of the scenes (already written) to Tor, just to let the SJWs reject it.  (Which they will.  It's highly critical of cultMarx literally from chapter 2.)

Then, if it goes anywhere, I can laugh and say "Tor could have had this, and didn't want it."

I let someone read my scene from book 2 this evening.  They liked it.

Blogger Gospace March 27, 2017 1:38 AM  

I have a copy of There Won't Be War at home. Picked it up thinking the stories it would be as interesting as the stories in the There Will Be War series. They weren't.

Blogger Monty James March 27, 2017 1:42 AM  

Twilight Of The Age Of Aquarius IV

Scroll down for the John Scalzi Christman card. It will be worth it.

Anonymous SciVo de Plorable March 27, 2017 1:51 AM  

Oh good Lord. "There Won't Be War" is a real (and very stupid) thing. From Terence on Goodreads:

"A bracing antidote to Pournelle's There Will Be War series.

"As I recall, though, my biggest problem with many of the stories that our avoiding the scourge of war depended upon fundamental changes in human nature - i.e., we would have to become something other than human to escape it. Perversely, considering my usual pessimism regarding the species, I wanted to see stories where people created peaceful societies without having to genetically modify themselves or in some other way become nonhuman."

Anonymous SciVo de Plorable March 27, 2017 2:16 AM  

VD wrote:I'm not at all surprised that Scalzi cracked under pressure. I've seen it happen in the game industry many times. It is much, much easier to perform when there aren't literally millions of dollars riding on your decisions and your self-discipline, no one is paying attention to you, and all that failure costs you is time.

There is such a thing as fear of success. I'm reading mindset books such as Mindset by Dwyck, Gorilla Mindset by Cernovich and Scott Adams' book because that's what makes the most difference.

Anonymous map March 27, 2017 2:50 AM  

Speaking of Larry Correia, about a few years ago, I read the first couple chapters of Hard Magic, pretty much the only book of his I have ever read.

I could not believe how phenomenal it was.

The chapters were so vividly written, that it was like watching a movie in your head. All I kept thinking was how fantastic it would be for SyFy or some other outlet turning this story into a TV series.

Blogger Calven March 27, 2017 4:30 AM  

And still candy issues forth for years and years and years.

Anonymous SciVo de Plorable March 27, 2017 6:08 AM  

VD wrote:Now he has to deliver THREE this year. The chances of them being delivered are slim enough, the chances of any of them being any good are considerably more remote.

On a whim, I've decided to compete with him just for kicks. Can't possibly do worse, and also I'm gonna do urban fantasy because love. So this is my pledge, that as a first-time writer I'm gonna kick his ass. Totally shameless Dresden/Monster Hunter pastiche.

Maybe not actually three. But I'm gonna try.

Blogger Cataline Sergius March 27, 2017 6:21 AM  

@76

Good luck to you. I hope you do well.

According to Nick Cole's podcast, if you can crank out one book every 90 days, you can make a decent living as an Amazon pulp writer.

Anonymous SciVo de Plorable March 27, 2017 7:46 AM  

Thank you Cataline. I will be keeping my day job, so there's that.

map wrote:Speaking of Larry Correia, about a few years ago, I read the first couple chapters of Hard Magic, pretty much the only book of his I have ever read.

I could not believe how phenomenal it was.

The chapters were so vividly written, that it was like watching a movie in your head. All I kept thinking was how fantastic it would be for SyFy or some other outlet turning this story into a TV series.


I kept thinking that SyFy would totally mess it up and that I would hate to watch such an awesome spectacle get so mangled. I will agree that those are incredibly visual books.

Blogger BigFire March 27, 2017 5:58 PM  

Regarding Correia, Chairman from the first Grimnoir is still one of the best written antagonist I've ever read. Everything he does make sense, and he is the hero of his own story. And you really should read the rest of Grimnoir novels.

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