The other day, the authors at Aspen Mountain Press opened the site to be greeted with this message:
The Aspen Mountain Press web site is temporarily suspending operations.
Over the past five years we’ve demanded high standards in all areas of the company from authors to editors to administrators. Due to the current health of the owner these standards have not been met.
We’d like to thank you for your support and patronage over this past half decade and apologize for any inconveniences this decision causes.
Now, some might believe that this would be reason to gloat and strut about feeling morally superior for having forced this publisher out of business (whether temporarily or permanently remains to be seen).
I’m here to tell you that just isn’t so. There’s nothing to gloat over, here. There’s nothing to feel superior about, or even proud of.
Nothing I’ve done in this whole fiasco was ever about winning. Nor was it ever about bringing anyone down.
My only purpose was fairness and healing — for both the authors AND the publisher.
There’s been a lot of negative talk about this particular publisher. I’ve posted several blogs in which I’ve emphatically stated that illegal activity has gone on. I stand by my words, because they are the unvarnished truth and that , above all else, is what I strive for in my life. It makes up the core of who I am.
Having said that, I’ve seen some particularly nasty and inflammatory commentary made, during this whole course of events, as well. Some have even left a bad taste in my mouth, because they’ve come from people with no intimate understanding of the struggle or situation. They are blind judgments.
Now, I’m not going to defend the actions of this publisher. The facts stand as they are, and there’s no excuse for the poor judgments and lack of communication. It’s in the owner’s hands to take responsibility for those failures. However, it remains my hope that the owner will, in time, learn to distinguish the difference between correcting a failure, and letting one own her. In that, she could begin to see her way clear to a healthier, ultimately happier life, and I wish her no ill will. I never have.
Over the past few days, AMP’s owner has taken the steps to begin laying out olive branches. She is trying, and I’m willing to give her the room to make that attempt. It would be wrong to simply deny her the chance to change, to make amends. Denying anyone the chance to grow, heal, or mend past errors is simply against my most basic character.
While I cannot promise to ever forget the actions that necessitated the drastic and public steps I’ve been forced to take over the past few months, I can, and do, forgive the events themselves. Holding onto anger has never been something I’ve been good at, just as letting go of hurt is something I continue to struggle with. Have I been hurt, in this? Most definitely. Am I angry? No… not anymore.
I would like to thank the owner of Aspen Mountain Press for finally starting to face her responsibilities. In yesterday’s mail, I finally received the letter I requested months ago, confirming the release of my books. With Aspen Mountain Press’ site currently down, I can only hope that the issue is finally resolved.
Would I recommend this publisher, should it ever resume operations? I can’t say that I would. Writing is an unstable profession, as it is — most of us have no idea if we’re even going to sell books, or how. It just seems too big a risk, now, to even think of throwing in with an unstable publisher, as well. I know that I, for one, will never submit work to AMP again.