Blog cruising this morning. Mad Max is posting more anonymous horror stories (I'm going to end up the only author who used a real name over there, I think); Alison is stomping on blackballers (isn't she beautiful when she's annoyed?); and M.J.'s asking publishers one of the big whys.
In my experience, publishers don't lie. They make promises that for whatever reason they later choose to break. Not unexpected, given the average one to two year space between signing an author and distributing their novel.
The first time a publisher broke a promise to me, I was shocked. Second time, I got pissed off. Third time, I almost quit the business. Now I get what I can from the publisher in writing and don't put faith in anything else. That's really all you can do.
Organized romance writers have an extremely complicated hierarchal system that runs on who's your buddy and nice-girl censorship, and often takes years of study to simply fathom, unless you apply this simple template: the romance community is high school. Remember all those bitches in high school, and what they did? Exactly.
M.J. asks Are we really that annoying/childish/ineffectual/spoiled that you can't bear to bring us in on the process? I think that sums up every pro writer's ultimate frustration with the industry, but as long as we're infighting, hiding behind anonymous handles and jostling for position, all the publishers really have to do is toss us a few fish now and then, sit back and enjoy the show.