Give Us the Beautiful and the Silly, but Less of the Terrible, Please

It’s so difficult to convey tone right away in prose, so all I know to do is say it up front, there’s no snark in this post. I’m going to be fully sincere with you, because I think you deserve that and that’s about all I’ve got to go with at this time.

2020 has been epically hard for so many people. By this point, it’s becoming likely that those of you who are reading this know someone personally that has had COVID-19, and perhaps have had a loved one die from it. That’s just part of it, too. To be forthcoming, the very end of 2018 ushered in a tremendously difficult year for my family and me, so 2019 and 2020 both have been brutal at times. This is not to say there haven’t been good moments, but still … words fail.

I beg your indulgence and your grace. It’s been a while. Several months, in fact, have passed since the last time I posted anything here. I offer apologies, but I don’t know how much of that is going to change right away. The business I ran to pay the bills and to pay the wonderful artists with whom I have the privilege of working has floundered. It’s not utterly failed, but it has gotten to the point that I had to seek a supplemental job. In the market and the times we have endured and are currently in, I am eminently grateful for the job that I’ve had and continue to work. At the same time, it can be grueling work, especially emotionally.

All of this is to say that I haven’t been able to afford much in the way of production for the bulk of 2020, and even when that hasn’t been the case, finding the energy to create, or more particularly, to promote, that has been even more fleeting.

I have a friend and colleague whom I adore, personally and professionally, but will not specify because I believe it’s always best for a person to be able to share their own story. This creator is amazingly talented, far more so than I, and so I admire this person too. They have stepped away from a lot of their creative outlets, and largely it has been because this past year or so has just wrung the lifeforce out of them like so much used dishrags. In truth, it’s caused me to weep on occasion, the pain, the loss, the fear, and the anguish that so many people are feeling.

Why am I sharing this with you now? Again, indulgence and grace, please, and I know you’re offering it, so I thank you already.

I founded BSaTT in 2014. Our fifth issue was supposed to come out in late 2019 / early to mid-2020 to celebrate our five years of publishing. While we may not have put out a ton of books, I’m so proud of the fact that since 2014, we have put out at least one book every year, sometimes more. That’s changed, though, with 2020. With that financial stall, followed by some creative ones, too, our fifth issue, which is largely done, it just won’t be done in 2020. I had something else I wanted to put out and thought that could at least serve as a placeholder. To rush that, and by this time I don’t know that would even be possible, it would be a disservice to you, the readers, as well as to the talent who worked on it, and to the product, itself.

So, with a heavy heart, I’m officially announcing that 2020 will see no new product from Beautiful, Silly, & Terrible Things. Those of you who are followers and fans of our books, again I know that you will be understanding, and I appreciate that greatly. Mainly, I want to offer my apologies to all of the talent that has work already completed and waiting for publication, some of them done for nearly two years. I fear that I have let you down, and to any degree that I have, I am sincerely sorry.

This is not a swan song, however. We are still in production of our fifth issue of our flagship book! That other project I mentioned, it’s still happening too! And ground has already been broken on our second issues of both Trope and Johnny Bats, Vampire Dick! I’m hopeful that circumstances will be such that several of these will see the light of 2021!

Know that amidst pandemics, economic collapses, convention failures, quashing efforts by privileged parties, cancer diagnoses, car wrecks, and deaths of loved ones, we keep creating. We keep making. We keep working.

Beautiful creators telling
Silly stories in
Terrible times

Even if we have to do it slowly.

This is who we are. Ride or die.

In the meantime, I encourage you all, take some of that grace and understanding that I can already feel coming from you, and give it to others too. And then give it to yourself as well. These are unprecedented times for most of us in our lifetimes.

Love, joy, and peace to each and every one of you!

John

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