Given the amount of correspondence of a remarkably similar nature, which we’ve received over the last month or so, it seemed like a good time for us to clear the air and debunk what seems to be a popular myth: namely, that if an author doesn’t currently appear on SF Gateway, it means that we don’t rate them or don’t know or care about them. This is simply not the case.
The SF Gateway Inbox has recently received a number of variations on the above, ranging in tone from ‘are there any plans to include my favourite, Author X?’ to ‘Are you serious?! No Author X? What’s wrong with you guys?’
This seems as good an opportunity as any to reiterate the answer to this question as set out in our FAQs at the launch of SF Gateway, back in 2011:
Why Isn’t Author X in the Gateway List?
There are many reasons an author might be absent from the SF Gateway list. In some cases the rights are simply not available. In others, an author or an author’s estate has decided that they don’t wish to make eBooks available; in these instances there is nothing we can do but move on and plan to revisit that author in the future, in the hope they will reconsider.
Sometimes, it’s just a case of us not having had time to approach an author. It’s also often the case that we are still speaking to an author or agent, and we obviously can’t discuss negotiations in progress. Given the scale of ambition for the SF Gateway project, author acquisition is likely to be a continuing process for some time; we announced SF Gateway with a list of authors agreed to that point, have added more since the announcement and will be adding even more authors over the coming years – but we will not announce an author until we have an agreement with their agent or estate.
If you are disappointed that certain authors are missing from the SF Gateway list, please bear the above explanations in mind, and be reassured that the least likely reason an author isn’t present is because we haven’t thought of them.
In short, if your favourite author isn’t present on the SF Gateway, please appreciate that their absence almost certainly causes us just as much frustration as it does you – perhaps more, if we’ve been pursuing rights in their work for the better part of five years (as is sometimes the case). We love SF, we know about SF and we care about SF, and if there are occasionally gaps in our list of authors, we hope it’s understood that we’re doing everything in our power to close those gaps. But sometimes the rights simply aren’t available, and in those cases there’s just nothing we can do.