FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
San Jose, CA February 9, 2020: StoryBundle owner Jason Chen blacklists and deplatforms #1 Bestselling Hispanic Author.
When popular author Jon Del Arroz opened an email regarding the recent Steampunk StoryBundle offering, he expected to find a contract, as one had been promised by its curator, the legendary Kevin J. Anderson, who accepted Del Arroz’s new release The Steam Knight into the bundle, but what he found instead was an email informing him that StoryBundle had blacklisted him from their platform.
The Hugo-Award Nominated and NYT Bestseller, Mr. Anderson, sounded blindsided in his email, stating that Chen gave a directive to refuse entry to the the StoryBundle platform of Del Arroz’s book, a collection which contains Del Arroz’s #1 Bestselling and fan-beloved Steampunk novella, Knight Training and more. With Del Arroz’s enormous popularity within Steampunk, including several #1 Bestsellers and a CLFA Book of the Year award for his work in the genre, it only made sense for the bundle curator to offer a slot for The Steam Knight.
Mr. Anderson stated that Mr. Chen labeled Del Arroz a “troll” and says he wasn’t “comfortable” putting The Steam Knight in the bundle. This came as a shock to Del Arroz, who has only had one interaction with Mr. Chen, in which Del Arroz submitted to act as a curator for a bundle, to where Mr. Chen never gave Del Arroz the professional dignity of replying.
“I am appalled to be harassed by someone who claims to have a service supporting indie authors and readers,” Del Arroz said regarding the matter. “I believe this to be politically motivated, as StoryBundle hails from San Jose, California, the very place where WorldCon libeled me when banning me from their convention. It’s difficult as an outspoken Hispanic author. The industry leadership often displays wanton acts of discrimination and bigotry in an effort to silence my political opinions and to try to harm my abilities to sell my well-loved stories to readers.”
StoryBundle’s actions appear no different than the troubles Del Arroz had with WorldCon two years prior, in which he is still engaged in a libel suit against the convention. Their history involves promoting extremist agitating books by authors who have threatened violence and worse against those who hold mainstream American views. The platform is currently running a bundle by a radical editor, Nick Mamatas, who is known for spewing wild conspiracy theories calling various authors in the field “Nazis” on Twitter dot com.
Curator Kevin J. Anderson is not at fault in this incident, according to Del Arroz. E-mails from Mr. Anderson were very cordial in welcoming Del Arroz to the bundle before Mr. Chen opted for the discrimination and blacklisting. Anderson has stated he’s sorry and agrees this is clearly a “personal attack” from Mr. Chen. He further stated, “The Steam Knight looked very interesting.”
Del Arroz states he only has the utmost respect for Mr. Anderson. “He’s an inspiration to me and thousands of other authors in the industry. I know he did all he could to do right by me and my wonderful Steampunk story.”
Whether Mr. Anderson will pull from being a curator of the bundle in protest is yet to be seen, but with this platform acting so unprofessionally toward popular authors, one can only imagine that such a legend as Mr. Anderson would not want to be associated with the StoryBundle.
“This is a warning shot for all authors,” Del Arroz says. “Shut up, fall in line, or face mob-like tactics to force you out of the industry. It’s akin to terrorism, as livelihoods are on the line, but people like Jason Chen want to play politics at all costs, even potential sales to their bunders. Really, the sad part is the Steampunk readers will miss out on one of the best genre books of the last decade because of his bigotry.”
In protest to StoryBundle, Del Arroz has released his The Steam Knight early on Amazon in order to give readers the book they may have missed out on. He is also calling on authors to boycott the service, as a threat to one author’s freedom of speech is a threat to us all.
Del Arroz will be doing an Emergency Broadcast on his YouTube stream later today regarding this discriminatory incident. Subscribe here.
Buy The Steam Knight, support Del Arroz and let the industry know that intolerance and bigotry will not stand.