Pixel-stained technopeasant gives away story, destroys market for SF Erotica.

Posted on | April 23, 2007

A few weeks ago, Howard Hendrix, the vice president of the Science Fiction Writers Association, wrote a bizzare harangue against some members of the SF writing community. Officially, he was declining to run for president, since it’s election time within the organization, but his letter contained something else entirely. Although he didn’t name names it was clear that his targets were among others Baen Books, Charlie Stross, and Cory Doctorow, and his bile clearly splashes on people like myself. His gripe was that writers who give away professional-quality work on-line

… undercut the efforts of his fellow workers to gain better pay and working conditions for all. [T]hey undercut those of us who aren’t giving it away for free and are trying to get publishers to pay a better wage for our hard work.

I felt I was not the president who would bless the contraction of our industry toward monopoly, or who would give imprimatur to the downward spiral that is converting the noble calling of Writer into the life of Pixel-stained Technopeasant Wretch.

In honor of this rather peculiar sentiment (Hendrix rightly calls himself “retrograde”), SF Writers Jo Walton has declared that today, March 23rd, is International Pixel-stained Technopeasant Day.

For my part on this day (and because, really, I can only tease and annoy my fans for so long), I have decided to release the first major arc of Sterlings, all five chapters, for your perusal pleasure.

If you go to the index and press Toggle Arcs, you’ll see that this one is labeled “Sterlings: Rhiane”. Rhiane’s arc is the most vanilla and romantic of the major Sterlings arcs; the story codes for this as posted to alt.sex.stories.moderated would be FF, slow with hints of all kinds of other things going on around our terribly repressed main characters. The gonzo gets going a little later, when Polly gets her own arc.

Enjoy!


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