New foreword author for Never Unprepared: Shanna Germain

After EN World reported accusations of sexual harassment made against Sean Patrick Fannon, I spoke to the other rights-holders for Never Unprepared — for which Fannon wrote the foreword — and we agreed that he should no longer be the “face” of this book. Engine Publishing stands with accusers.

We contacted award-winning game designer and author Shanna Germain about writing a new foreword, and were thrilled when she signed on for the job. You may know Shanna from her Origins- and ENnie Award-winning work on Numenera and No Thank You, Evil!, her numerous books, or her erotica.

Our layout designer also offered to update the book at no charge and requested that we donate what we would have paid him to Planned Parenthood, which we did.

If you have previously purchased Never Unprepared, whether in print or digitally and no matter where you purchased it, we would love to send you an updated copy with Shanna’s new foreword. (If you bought it on DriveThruRPG, you already have access to this updated version.) No other content has changed.

9 Responses to “New foreword author for Never Unprepared: Shanna Germain

  • Xandyr
    9 months ago

    I am an avowed believer that any form of sexual harassment is absolutely abhorrent…when it has been proven. The fact that this is being done based on nothing but allegations and accusation leaves me no choice but to step away from other products in the future.

    “Engine Publishing stands with accusers.” You are more than welcome to support those who claim they have been abused. But to treat accusations as something that are already proven, and to take it so far as to erase an accused — but not convicted — person’s contributions is…far too reactionary.

    I will no longer support this. I know this won’t matter to you, and that’s fine. I will be discouraging others from doing so, either.

  • Andrew Merzetti
    9 months ago

    You stand with accusers? Great. I accuse you of not caring about fair treatment of those accused of sexual harrassment, so thanks for your support. (I’m sure glad though that when I was falsely accused of harrassment by a spurned co-worker that the people involved didn’t stand with accusers.)

  • Martin Ralya
    9 months ago

    Sexual harassment is notoriously difficult to prove, and there are few — if any — incentives for accusers to come forward.

    If you’ve read the EN World piece, and Fannon’s responses, you know that this is not a “casual” accusation, nor an isolated one.

    I recognize that this choice won’t be popular with everyone. It has cost us time and money to make this change, and will likely cost us in terms of lost revenue from folks who feel the way you do about it. I’m fine with that because it’s the right thing to do.

  • David Menefee
    9 months ago

    I also stand with accusers. I’m downloading my updated copy now!

  • John Arcadian
    9 months ago

    I am incredibly pleased that you took this step. Thank you for being a phenomenal publisher and working to create better spaces within the industry.

  • I am extremely uncomfortable with the precedent of editing or censoring published content on these grounds. I own many books written by criminals and worse, because I believe that a person making one (or many) mistakes does not necessarily taint their life’s work. To my limited knowledge of the affair, Fannon has done wrong and admitted to it, but that does not in any way compromise his right to be published in your book. If as publishers you expect to continue censoring paid for products after the fact to suit the shifting tide of public opinion, I have no further interest in supporting your products.

  • Russell Phillips
    9 months ago

    Regarding the complaint that nothing has been proven, proof is not an absolute.

    UK civil courts require guilt to be proven “on the balance of probabilities”. Criminal courts, because they can inflict much harsher penalties, require the much higher level of “beyond reasonable doubt”. I believe the US has similar differences.

    Engine Publishing evidently believe that the proof that they have seen is sufficient to justify their actions. That’s their choice, just as each of their customers can choose to buy this product or not. Anyone that has already bought it and doesn’t like Engine’s decision can choose not to take up their offer of an updated version.

  • Elizabeth Hillis
    9 months ago

    Thank you for this decision. I assume many of the people saying they dislike this choice are doing so because they are friends with Fannon, or because they struggle to view the situation from any perspective but the side of the accused.

    Let’s be frank, the incidents weren’t isolated and were repeated. But worse still, Fannon seems unable to acknowledge his “missteps.” His series of denials that morphed into “misunderstandings” that morphed into “they didn’t communicated these problems to me” that morphed into…well, it’s an ongoing tale, it seems–are frustrating and disheartening. If he had addressed the initial accusations, acknowledge his problems outright, and stated he would work to improve, I could consider him in a better light, but, as it stands, he continues to dig himself into a hole by claiming to support victims…EXCEPT the ones that he victimized.

    Again, thank you for this decision and your statement. Kudos to your team and to your layout designer, who donated their pay to a worthy cause.

  • Martin Ralya
    9 months ago

    Thank you to the folks who have voiced their support. I appreciate it.

    Elizabeth, you summed up the problems with how the post-ENWorld-report situation unfolded better than I could have.