I Am Un-Publishing One of My Books

It is with mixed emotions that, as of today, I am removing my second novel, Corruption from sale. There are a few reasons for this.

The first, and most important, is the book is unfinished. After two years of writing and editing the manuscript, I was antsy to write other stories and was concerned that too much time would pass after my debut if I didn’t publish my second novel ASAP, so in April of 2017 I made the hasty and short-sighted decision to put it on the market without having it professionally edited. Well, that isn’t entirely true – I was working as a professional editor at the time, so it was, in a sense. But as Elvira advises Tony in Scarface: “Never get high on your own supply.” So while I certainly feel the story has many great, memorable characters and scenes, and in general is free of any typos, it simply was not ready to be published. There are plenty of reviews out there voicing many different opinions you can read as to the “why.” My own take: the pacing in the first half is too slow (many readers enjoyed the second half much more), and there were a handful of creative decisions regarding certain characters that would have been better executed with some editorial guidance.

Not to say that I would change the story itself, about a young man’s moral fall at the hands of a bad mentor. But rarely does what we say matter more than how we say it.

Corruption is also unfinished in another way. It is the first book in a series that I planned as a duology. I spent a lot of time drafting the sequel, Virtue, which currently sits at around 70% finished on my hard drive. I have no idea when I am going to complete it. In the mean time, I’ve written two other novel manuscripts, several short stories, and a screenplay. For now I feel my heart is simply too set on other projects to give this series the time it deserves, which brings me to my next point…

The final reason I am un-publishing this book is my conscience. While I still love this story very deeply and have always written with the ethos that a writer’s first, and only job is to be honest, an honest effort doesn’t always guarantee success. The story is undercooked, and that no longer sits well with me. If the book had sold a thousand or ten thousand or a million copies, or if I didn’t own the rights, it would just be another “oh, well.” But it didn’t, and I do, so I can do what I want.

I do intend to finish this series, someday, after a significant re-edit of the first book with the helping hands of a professional. Maybe I will release both books as an omnibus, or as separate “definitive editions,” or together as one huge, Russian-length novel. I don’t know when it will actually happen, but that’s the plan.

However, for now, it is coming down.

Some dates:

  • The paperback version is no longer for sale, as of today.
  • The Kindle version will be removed from the Amazon store on December 26, 2020 when its current KDP period expires.
  • The audio version is still available on Audible for the time being, but will be removed in the near future.

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