Horizons: The final word

I am distressed. Like, feeling-an-ulcer-boiling-up-in-my-gut distressed.

Even though this blog has my own given name on it, and it includes a sweet little “this ain’t Harlequin’s blog” disclaimer on the right sidebar, and I spent my precious library time posting about how this blog is my personal opinion blah, blah, blah, I’m still worried people might be mistaking my thoughts for those of the Harlequin PR office. (Yes, I tend toward paranoia.)

I’m not an executive, a director, a manager or even a senior person at Harlequin. I just work there, happily, and love publishing, a lot. Naturally, I thought it’d be interesting to discuss exciting developments within my favorite publishing company as one publishing professional to others.

Alas, that plan isn’t working for me.

I’m too much of a nervous Nellie. Even though Harlequin has a permissive blogging policy, it still feels weird to go from 16 page views to over a thousand on the back of a blogosphere fury. To lower my stress, I’m holding off on discussing Harlequin on this blog. (At least until the Horizons furor dies down.) That way I can assure my bile-filled stomach that I haven’t accidentally said something that someone else will take as coming directly from Harlequin.

I love my job and I want to keep it. Also, I hate ulcers.

So. I’m going to publish this little piece and then play around in the comments that have piled up over these last few days. I will respond to as many as I can, though I will not answer any questions specifically about Harlequin or Horizons.

I will, however, change the comments to unmoderated so you guys can better discuss things amongst yourselves, if you want to hang around. And, I will continue to discuss self-publishing, vanity presses, e-publishing and any other crazy mode of non-traditional publishing that catches my fancy. Because, in spite of the naysayers, I think they are interesting ideas that deserve further thought and discussion.

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8 Responses to “Horizons: The final word”


  1. 1 Donna November 21, 2009 at 2:14 pm

    Maybe, before writing further about these “interesting ideas,” you should do some reading and research on the other vanity schemes out there that use the same model as HH. I can only be charitable and attribute your defense of Harlequin to ignorance.

    Vanity publishing is not “crazy” or new or creative; it is simply predatory and unethical. I hope you do believe in some basic ethical constraints in doing business.

  2. 2 michelle sagara November 21, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    Even though this blog has my own given name on it, and it includes a sweet little “this ain’t Harlequin’s blog” disclaimer on the right sidebar, and I spent my precious library time posting about how this blog is my personal opinion blah, blah, blah, I’m still worried people might be mistaking my thoughts for those of the Harlequin PR office. (Yes, I tend toward paranoia.)

    Most of the page-hits during this dust-up will come in on a direct link to the post in which you did the Q&A. The problem is that the individual pages don’t actually have any of the disclaimer materials on the sidebar — not that I want to add to your ulcers. Only your actual “home” or “front” page has them, and everyone is by-passing that with the direct link.

    So it would probably be helpful to ETA: a bold-face disclaimer at the top of that particular Q&A page.

  3. 4 May B. November 22, 2009 at 5:56 am

    I am not writer or have any aspiration to be a writer so the Horizons thing did not affect me. Though I admit I follow with fascinating eyes.

    BUT I found your opinion quite a little bit naive. You said you are distress, that this is your personal blog and have nothing to do with Harlequin. However, you discussed and gave opinion about something that Harlequin done, about the SP or VP, about RWA. Did you really believe that it would not impact the public opinion about your company? You told everyone that you work for Harlequin, which in publishing business. You talk about publishing business especially something that impact directly to your company and you still think that everyone should know that it is all about you but not the company you work for.

    You may not have any intention but once the words are out, it cannot stop. You as a Harlequin employee, talk about Harlequin, you cannot blame anyone if they think you represent your company’s opinion.

    • 5 Stacy Boyd November 22, 2009 at 10:20 pm

      May B.,

      You’re right. I think I was being a bit naive. I wanted to write about publishing, I work in publishing, and I had hoped that I could discuss the company I work with as part of the whole of publishing. Like I said, it didn’t work out as I’d hoped, so I’ve changed my own personal policy on the matter.

  4. 6 Laura Resnick November 22, 2009 at 7:41 pm

    Novelists, Inc., an international organization of professional novelists, has posted a formal statement about vanity press, and specifically about the practice of any major publisher using its reputable position to promote the egregious business of vanity “publishing.”

    The NINC statement also provides additional links to further information about the many problems with and longstanding, widespread objections to vanity/subsidy “publishing.”

    And, as NINC points out, vanity press isn’t a new and innovative venture, it’s just an old and very familiar problem.

    The statement is at:
    http://www.ninc.com/blog/index.php/archives/ninc-responds-publishing

  5. 7 Wylie November 23, 2009 at 12:11 am

    I don’t find you naive, Stacy, just honest. I also know that unless your title is PR, Harlequin Enterprises, you don’t speak for the company… and perhaps those that do think so are naive 😉

    Keep blogging, keep editing, keep smiling. This will all be forgotten in a few weeks, or sooner should another publishing scandal break. If only La Nora would self-publish a steampunk-menage-vampire-trilogy and give us a new hot topic!! LOL

    • 8 Stacy Boyd November 23, 2009 at 3:22 pm

      Wylie,

      Thanks for the kind words. I can already tell that things are calming down, just based on comments elsewhere. Those of us who like stories DO thrive on drama. And a steampunk-menage-vampire-trilogy by La Nora, self-published, would indeed be something to talk about!


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DISCLAIMER

I work as an editor at Harlequin, but the posts on this site are all mine and don’t represent my employer's positions, strategies or opinions.
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