This week we have a web-exclusive interview with Eric Kampmann of Beaufort Books - the company that showed the heart we all wish Random House had. For background, listen to our discussion on how Random House caved into the fear of Islamic reprisal, canceling publication of The Jewel of Medina by Sherry Jones in Podcast #26: Muslims, Publishers, and Free Speech. We were all hoping someone would come to the rescue and Beaufort, led by Kampmann, did just that.
Ex asks what Eric thought upon hearing of the Random House disgrace. What we get is some real inside-baseball on the corporate politics that may have been behind their decision, as Eric has been in the business many years and knows some of principals involved. He goes on to explain how Beaufort made the decision to get involved. We talk a little bit about what the book is about and why the book may be a "seller", even though Sherry Jones is a first-time author. Find out if Beaufort has any plans in place in the event of terrorism.
Eric talks about the support he has received from retailers. We get a peek inside the publishing industry and the likelihood of self-censorship in the future. Finally, the positive changes that have taken place within the publishing industry - something every free-thinker should be heartened by. Eric gives better than an iTunes 5 Star Review to Another Goddamned Podcast and gets a prize. You can probably guess what it is. (00:00)
We come back from the interview and the Herd and discuss it a little further. Ex wonders which of us is very likely to buy the book. Is a historical fiction about a religion going to be of interest to people like us? Is it bad if there were no real Islamic threats that Random House thought it was OK to use claims of threats as their reason for not publishing? (35:49)
It's puzzle time. Do any of our listeners know how to interpret Faithfreeists and Christians? Then, see what you can do with some biblical names. Ex gives the results of our "God Bless America" poll. Evo has two quizzes this week. One is just for the Herd, but you can play along! It gets better. The one for you is sweet. But click off of the podcast immediately after the quiz or listen to Evo sing. You've been warned. (51:50)
UPDATE: The European publisher of The Jewel of Medina had his home firebombed in an apparent terrorist attack.
Opening Music [00:00]: excerpt from "Another Goddamned Draft"
Bridge Music [34:25]: excerpt from "One of Many"
Bridge Music [50:45]: excerpt from "Swing to the Left"
Bridge and Closing Music [1:04:54]: excerpt from "As Jazzy as I Get"
(All music: copyright 2008 by Rachel Murie)
This Week's Goddamned Links
Jewel of Medina at Amazon
Another Goddamned Puzzle:
Krystian Kyhl, Yunshui