Henry Flesh recently discussed the history of the indie publishing company in a NY Press article, noting that many authors represented under former Soft Skull Press publisher Sander Hicks didn’t receive one red cent for their work. Flesh’s article opens with an anecdote likely to inflame supporters of small publishing houses:
Asia Argento once told me that in many ways she preferred working with a mainstream studio rather than an independent one, since at least she knew what she could expect from a major.
“The independent producers pretend to be your friends,” she said, “then they stab you in the back.”
In the end, Flesh cheers the success of Richard Nash, the companyâ€™s chairman of the board, who took over as publisher after Hicks’ departure and turned the company around despite the skepticism of authors who had been cheated before. “The ethical approach used to right Soft Skullâ€™s finances and deal with artists is one that should be studied by every independent,” Flesh says.