To quote our Publisher Bob Booth (slightly cleaned up for publication), “This has been one hell of a year.”
The horror community suffered a devastating loss when Rick Hautala passed away on March 21st. Anyone who has ever read Rick’s work will attest to what an amazing writer he was, but more importantly anyone who ever had the pleasure to know him will attest to what an amazing person he was. As such, the online world of Facebook and blogs such as this has been overwhelmed by a flood of tributes, remembrances, and appreciations ever since he passed (and rightfully so).
Amidst all those articles, however, Christopher Golden published the following on his blog, No Rest for the Wicked —
Unfortunately, Rick’s sudden death could not have been more untimely. The life of a freelance writer is often one lived on the fringes of financial ruin, and Rick struggled mightily to stay afloat in recent years. Just within the last couple of months, that struggle became difficult enough that he could not afford to continue paying his life insurance bill, and allowed it to lapse. Though he could never have foreseen it, the timing, of course, could not have been worse. Then, just this morning, Holly discovered that the social security benefits she might hope to receive as Rick’s widow are not available to her until she turns sixty, three years from now. Efforts are under way on projects that we hope will earn some money for Rick’s estate, but meanwhile there are costs involved with his death to consider, and then, for Holly, the struggle will continue. If you’d like to help, any donation would be appreciated. You can PayPal directly to Holly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you so much for your time.
Holly Newstein is more to us than just another author on our roster or the beloved wife of the first writer who ever signed with us — she’s our dear friend and an essential pillar of the Necon Community. Therefore, we humbly request that all those who can please consider responding to Chris’ call.
For our part, effective immediately and lasting through June 30th (i.e. the entire second quarter of 2013), Necon E-Books will not take our usual Publisher’s share of all sales of Rick or Holly’s titles — WINTER WAKE, DEAD VOICES and THE EPICURE. Instead, we’ll be passing those profits directly to Holly. Naturally, Ralph W. Bieber will continue to receive his share of sales of THE EPICURE, and all third party vendors (i.e. Amazon, B&N, etc.) will take their standard percentage as well. Otherwise, for the next three months, everything will go straight to Holly. Holly, we wish we could do more and we sincerely hope that this helps (even just slightly).
Along those lines, we have never once requested that our customers consider purchasing our titles directly from our own web site rather than through a third party vendor; in fact, we consider it a point of pride and emphasis that we make our titles available as widely and conveniently as possible. However, once and only once, I’m going to make an exception in this case because the PayPal transaction fees generated by sales on our site are far less than the percentage owed to outside vendors, which means sales from our site will equate to more for Holly (and to hopefully spur our customers in that direction, we’ve made all three titles available in one easy-to-purchase bundle HERE).
Thank you all in advance for doing everything you can to help Holly during this unspeakably difficult time.
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