The marvelous and sensible Chuck Wendig has done it again, this time making a very good argument against taking sides in the Amazon publishing kerfluffle. The text below and more is at his blog Terrible Minds at http://terribleminds.com
PUBLISHING IS NOT A RELIGIOUS WAR
Dave presses his eye against the scope.
He sweats and squints. “Which one is which, again?”
Harry, behind him, squats down on a rock and peers through the binoculars. “The fat one — one that looks like a bean bag chair that grew pipecleaner legs and started tottering around, that’s Simon. The skinny one, tall and lean as a Virginia Slim cigarette, well, that’s Schuster.”
Deep breath. In, out. In, out.
Dave suddenly pulls away from the scope. “I dunno if I can do this, Harry.”
“Godsdamnit,” Harry says. He sucks in a snot, chews it a little, spits it against the rock – spat. “You picked a side, Dave. Time to tell them Big City Publishing types that they can’t tread on us.”
“Were they treading on us, though? I mean, seems like everybody’s allowed to do their own thing — it’s just, y’know, it’s just business –”
“Business?” Harry barks, incredulous. “Business? By Bezos’ balls, Dave. This ain’t just business. This here is idea-ology. They got ideas that ain’t our ideas and that’s a no-no. Can’t have folks running around willy-nilly thinking that they can just do different things. This is a war for the spirit. A war over freedom and independence. Now kiss that Kindle and take the shot, Dave.”
Dave nods. Grabs the Kindle dangling around his neck, gives it a kiss, then stoops back to the rifle. He blinks away stinging sweat.
Harry, in his ear: “Take the shot, Dave. Take the shot.”
Bang. The gun kicks like a scorpion-stung horse. The rifle report ripples across the valley — the sound of a bullet ripping the sky like a piece of paper moments before it unzippers Simon’s robot head, sending up a rain of sparks. Schuster warbles and screams and runs for cover. Even here they can hear its legs clanking.
“The other one’s running,” Dave says.
“That’s all right,” Harry answers. He claps Dave hard on the back. “We’ll get him later. For now, we gotta move down into the canyons. I hear there’s a camp of those Smashwords heretics that needs some education. Now, before we go –” He bows his head in sudden prayer. “May Amazon find us and bless us and keep our royalties high.”