The Deixis Press Weekly - Issue #38
I got a message from Substack telling me that over 100 people are now hanging on my every word here at The Deixis Press Weekly, so I guess I’d better provide an update about what’s been going on.
First, I blew right past the first Deixis Press birthday (a week ago today). Don’t worry; I celebrated by smashing a cake right into my face and smearing it all in my hair. I expect you all to do the same in honor of this bastard child.
Speaking of hair, I’ve been pulling mine out over uk.bookshop.org again; I went back into Ingram Spark and made sure all of my books were explicitly set to “returnable” even though Gardners have made it clear that doesn’t make any difference. I sent an email to Gardners begging them to give me like any kind of small clue about how to make my books more widely available; their response was, as ever, basically that I can fvck off. (I’m using the ancient Latin spelling to ensure this newsletter is safe for work for those who receive it by email.)
The long and short of it is that uk.bookshop.org have now repeated that since all POD titles are listed as “Firm Sale” by Gardners, they won’t stock them. I don’t think that’s true, actually—I think they do stock POD titles from large, established publishers—but maybe it’s not so bad.
Furthermore, Nielsen has some incorrect data about THE TRANSFER PROBLEM, listing it as “not available” rather than “not yet available”; I’ve tried for weeks to get it fixed. The first time I got in touch they said “oh yeah you’ve fixed that today” but now they say “oh yeah that problem lies with Ingram Spark.” There are no settings in Ingram that I can use to make it “not available” so that’s fun.
People think I’m joking when I say I have a List; it may not be a physical spreadsheet, but I do have a List. For any ASOIAF readers, it’s a lot like Arya’s list that she recites to herself before she goes to sleep at night. It’s a shame that the three major organizations I have to deal with to do my job have made it right to the top of my List.
Yes, this is pretty much how I feel at this point.
Onto the good news. THE TRANSFER PROBLEM has not had any trouble getting listed by Amazon, where it’s doing a roaring trade:
Last night it was listed as 61 in Technothrillers (Kindle Store), 63 in Techno Thrillers, and 126 in Science Fiction Adventure (Kindle Store). That’s moved around quite a lot now, but it’s great to see it getting in front of people’s faces.
Since nobody seems to be able to pre-order the paperback from other outlets thanks to a combination of Ingram Spark, Gardners, and Nielsen—the three organizations who have the solitary purpose of making books available for people to buy—I urge you: please, order THE TRANSFER PROBLEM from Amazon, and tell your friends, too. Adam shouldn’t have to suffer at the hands of these insufferable, incompetent, smug gatekeepers.
I know Amazon is evil, but I’ve come to the conclusion over the past year that literally no organization is ethical when it comes to publishing. I’d personally be happier to support a campaign to boycott Gardners and Nielsen than one to boycott Amazon.
(You can also order the hardback direct from me if you are in the UK).
There is other stuff I’ve been up to: typesetting Marc Joan’s HANGDOG SOULS, getting Jessica Gregson’s AFTER SILENCE ready for advance review, sorting out the launch party for Genevieve and Adam—just normal press stuff.
Would you like some cover reveals?:
And here is Hangdog Souls. The cover was designed by the magnificent Libby as always, but this time Marc has commissioned an original painting from an Indian wildlife artist, Prasad Natarajan. I think you’ll agree, it is absolutely incredible.
Each of the elements of this painting relates specifically to something important in the story, which is, by the way, epic in every sense:
Kingdom of Mysore, 1799. A guilt-racked British Army deserter tries to win safety for those he loves — but his reckless bargaining only leaves him trapped between destinies, condemned to facilitate centuries of suicide and murder. Death after death, each death diminishes him, until — a quarter of a millennium later — a Keralan astrophysicist has the chance to annul the soldier’s Faustian bargain. But Chandy John is weakened by his own burden of grief. Will this twenty-first century scientist become just another helpless nexus between undeserved death and undeserved life?
Hangdog Souls is set in the Dravidian heartlands of South India — and in a blurred edgeland where alternative realities elide. Through linked narratives of guilt, shame and the search for absolution, this book takes readers from the arid Tamil plains to the highest peaks of the Nilgiris, and from occult horrors in Tipu Sultan’s kingdom to creeping madness in the world of particle physics.
Spanning three hundred years, the stories in Hangdog Souls weave together the fates and fortunes of multiple characters — individuals that echo through the generations, asking always the same question: What weight can balance the death of an innocent?
I think that’s enough for today. I love my authors and their incredible books. I hate all the stuff that stops them from being more widely available. That’s the main takeaway from today’s note, I think.
Oh—before I forget. Jason Fischer’s PAPA LUCY & THE BONEMAN has been shortlisted for Best Science Fiction Novel and Best Horror Novel in this year's Aurealis Awards. I continue to mention Jason’s successes because this Substack is, after all, primarily a Jason Fischer stan account.
Is there anything we can do to nudge the gatekeepers to do the right thing? Eg, suppose we email bookshop.org to ask them about their policy re POD titles?