When this news broke through the science fiction community, all I could think about was how he contributed to my joining up with Crazy 8.
I’m not entirely sure if I would have if it hadn’t been for Frenkel. But you see, he was the editor on a trilogy of mine (two books so far) called the Hidden Earth trilogy. It was designed to be a blend of science fiction and fantasy, and consequently was of no interest to potential publishers who asserted that such combos never sold. The only publisher interested was Tor, and they bought it for a relative song.
The first book was put out with exactly zero promotion. Bookstores in my own neighborhood carried no copies. It was the worst distributed novel of my career and the low numbers helped tank sales on every subsequent book of mine. Meanwhile the second novel was sitting on Frenkel’s desk, and it sat and it sat, unread, untouched, for nearly two years. And when I pointed out to Frenkel that contractually the book had to come out within three months, and was that going to happen, he laughed at me.
I don’t do well with editors laughing at me.
In the meantime Mike Friedman was coming to me with a demented notion for self-publishing. He made a convincing case for it. I was in the midst of trying to sell a vampire satire called Pulling Up Stakes and was being given all sorts of reasons why it couldn’t be published: Satire didn’t sell. Vampire novels had to be written by women. The protagonist had to be a young girl who was hopelessly in love with a vampire, not an unconfident vampire who was actually a vampire hunter.
At some point one gets tired of being told why he can’t succeed. At some point publishers get tiresome with their reasons.
And so here we are several years later. The Hidden Earth trilogy had been published. Pulling Up Stakes had been published. Within a short time Fearless, a sequel to my novel Tigerheart, will be published.
And Jim Frenkel, who reportedly has a reputation for sexually harassing women, is gone.
Life is good.