The Half-Price Books Union, and Also, Australia
I’ve been traveling the last couple of days, and am about to be traveling for two weeks straight after that, so I’ve posted my usual “hey, I’m traveling, don’t expect a reply” email auto responder. This means that if you were hoping to get an email response from me about something, bad news, friend, you’ll have to wait until October at least. Sorry (exceptions are made for Tor staff, my agent/manager/lawyer, and Krissy and Athena, the latter two being more likely to just call or text in either event).
Be that as it may, a couple of things popped into my email queue under the wire that had requests of a public nature, so I thought I would address them here quickly.
First, I got an email from a member of the Half-Price Books Union, basically saying, hey, you’re going to be at the chain’s flagship store in Dallas on your tour, can you fly the flag a little bit? It appears the company is being a smidge resistant to union activity, although as far as I can tell there’s no strike being called.
The chances are very good that in my tour-zombie state I might have it slip my mind in the moment, so I thought it better to note it here, now, while it is on the top of my mind. So, basically: I think it’s no surprise that I support unions in general, and given that actual union activity is a plot point in Starter Villain, it would be remiss for me not to say that obviously I support unionization, not only at Half-Price Books but also for any bookstore chain. If memory serves there was a recent one-day strike at Powell’s headquarters for similar reasons.
Booksellers rock and deserve fair wages and benefits and all of those good things, and — strangely! — the collective power that come from unions helps with that. So, yeah, the Half-Price Books Union has my support here. Easy call!
Second, my pal Liz in Australia asked if I could share a video in support of the Indigenous Voice to Parliament referendum that is underway in Australia. My immediate response to this request, being a citizen of the United States, was “bwuh?” to which Liz very helpfully sent along this explainer of what the referendum is on and entails. I found it useful to understanding things, and I can likewise recommend it to anyone (and especially Australians) who are wondering whether or not to support the referendum.
Having thus been somewhat enlightened, I am happy to now share the requested video, which features Australian music legend John Farnham’s song “You’re the Voice” in support of the referendum. My understanding is that the US equivalent would be Bruce Springsteen allowing one of his signature songs to be used to support a constitutional amendment, so there you have it.
And now, my email is officially asleep until October.