Apparently you can.
Meet David Powers King. Lots of you probably already know him. Last October, I was invited to join a critique group of which he is apart. The four individuals in this group have been fantastic. They have helped me grow so much as a writer, and I now consider all of them dear friends.
When I found out David and his co-author, Michael, had signed a publishing contract for their debut novel, Woven, I was thrilled! By that point I'd had months of exposure to David's work, and knew anything he wrote would be fantastic. As I learned more and more about the story, I got more and more excited for October, when I would be able to buy a copy and devour it.
That's not going to happen now. Oh, I have no doubt the book will be published. But not in October. Not by Cedar Fort. Why, you ask? All because of one word--partner. Go on, read the article. I'll wait. You can also listen to the short news clip that aired on KUTV last night. And read David's thoughts on the matter.
I'm shocked, too. I couldn't believe it when David told us what was happening. I checked my calendar--it's still 2013. I thought we were enlightened now? I thought we decided discrimination was bad? I thought we were supposed to love everyone and judge not, that we be not judged?
The writing and online community seems to be exploding with this news. Read this very interesting--and enlightening--blog post on the subject. The whole thing is just sad. Cedar Fort knew Michael was gay when they signed the book. By offering them a contract, Michael and David assumed it wasn't an issue. Woven is a YA fantasy with a very heterosexual romance angle. It's fun, light-hearted, something anyone and everyone can enjoy. It doesn't infringe on anyone's value or belief system. Cedar Fort wanted the book, but they didn't want to properly--and respectfully--attribute the work to it's rightful authors.
Because David is LDS, Cedar Fort caters to a largely LDS audience, and Michael is gay, I'm sure waves will be made. But let me say this: this was not a decision made by the LDS church. This decision does not reflect on the opinions of all LDS people. There are many, many good LDS members who are just as saddened by Cedar Fort's actions on this issue as am I. As for me, I stand by my religion's beliefs and statements on the matter, and I always will. You can read about the LDS church's stance here and here, on their official websites. And those beliefs state, over and over and over, that everyone--everyone--deserves to be treated with love and respect and humanity. Which unfortunately did not happen in this situation. At all. It's sad that all of this mess is because of one tiny word. A word not even in the book, but the bio.
The good news is David and Michael again hold the rights to Woven and now they can shop for a new and better home for their novel. Which they will find. And when they do, I will be at the release party with a copy in my hands. Because I buy books based on the book's merits, and not the authors' lifestyle choices.
So what do you think about the situation, blog readers? I'd love to hear your thoughts.