The above image illustrates a huge problem Christian publishers have. At the left note their fine engaged nonfiction, non-creative output by or about author C.S. Lewis. This is the golden standard of Christian publishing. To the right in this image note an illustration of the publishing denied to believing writers of fiction by these publishing concerns. In the past it was believed that secular publishing swoops in to abscond with creative works before RandompenguinsXian and other religious publishers can get to them. Evidence is mounting that this may not be the case.
Now, one at a time, LeakyWits is releasing their cache of emails illegally obtained from publishers RandompenguinsXian. I discovered this ongoing illegal series while searching on “S. Dorman,” a little known writer of gospel tracts. (I had been trying to discern if this author might do inadvertent harm to my reputation/ career.) It is unclear whether this S. Dorman had anything to do with the leakage. Disclaimer: This gospel tract writer, with a similar name, is not the same as the administrator of this blog. Nor are they related.
Here our series begins with the first emails in the LeakyWits RandompenguinsXian cache:
Memo from Screwtype:
The latest applicant for the position looks fairly good. All technical requirements are fulfilled in her. This might be a good fit. Education, solid intern experience, connections (meritocratic, professional and familial), and the usual grad and postgrad publications. However. There’s always a however. Maybe two.
When you look at the personal side of things we may have a bit of a hitch. At first glance it’s all right. We have a pretty substantial portion of the arts imprint—you recall ImprimDeNature’s mantra—devotion to “tell it slant.” We’ve updated that a bit. It’s now “show it slant.” We count on at least two or three each year of the straightforward theses on the arts in this imprint. They always sell middling to well and have a solid market of kids interested to see their writerly work accepted. Well and good, as we say.
The other however—product mission (generally speaking) is to encourage the work but not necessarily publish it. Our applicant, though, is personally interested in publishing the type of works fostered, praised and engaged by these publications. I’ve tried very very subtly to signal that this would not work. (I tell you bluntly, of course). But signaling young hopefuls is not the art it used to be with me. Perhaps I’m too subtle. Perhaps too lax. Whatever it is, I count on you to see she does not go astray if we take her onboard.
Hello Woody! Yes, I’d be glad to call you Woody—thank you! I’ve never heard of a woman with that nickname but it seems to suit. :->
Of course I’m excited to begin this work. As you know, I’ve been a fan of ImprimDeNature for years! Working with other believers interested in the arts has been my dream.
[Here Woody pauses to chuckle over Taylor’s delight, and her reference to “years.” Taylor is sweet. Much appreciated freshness in the publishing concern.]*
Woody, I’ve got a slough of stuff to read tonight. And so looking forward to opening up the fiction to some thoroughgoing challenging yet beautiful work. The kind of thing without the heavy hand, the cut-and-dried. Oh! You know what I mean. Can we do this?! Oh it will be so good! The subtle maybe-we-do-and-maybe-we-don’t-see-where-you’re-going-with-this fictive suggestiveness! Transforming the fiction branch of the IDN brand into a sort of artistic “from milk to meat,” concern. We won’t need the milk here but strong meat. Not to be too grandiose, but it’s not impossible that one day our works will be Classic.
[Poor girl has not— her reception of signals— our signals should be a bit amplified, I think.]*
It was such a thrill to read our (how I love that word our!) book on envisioning the Christian imagination in poetry and fiction, in music and performance and art! I’ve been going back over it in prep for this work. “Those works outside church culture with subtle artistry woven throughout, or a certain slanted-ness, quirkiness, eccentricity and power embedded with spiritual wisdom….” So it does not get better than that! This book of ours is going to be my mentor, my guide. So. You are my mentor! Woody! Never fear. But I will also get in touch with the author of Re-Imagine for tips on authors he might think it worthwhile to pursue in this generation.
Anyway! Better get back to this marvelous slush! Thank God for readers! :-> So glad they are in tune with the vision. At least, I’m supposing they will be.
*These thoughts of Woody’s were later shared on social media in promotion for a certain concern. We may find out about that as this LeakyWits series unfolds.