Until recently, it was all speculation and rumours, but L.J. Smith, author of the popular Vampire Diaries series has come forth and addressed the rumours on her blog, affirming that she is, in fact, no longer the author of the series.
In her words, L.J. Smith says, "Thank you, but don't boycott." Essentially, she's asking that her readers and fans don't take their judgment out on HarperCollins or the future books in the series and urges her fans to at least give the new books a try.
A refresher for those of you who didn't know - L.J. Smith originally signed a contract that said she works "for hire," which means that while she is the author of the The Vampire Diaries series, she is not the owner of the series. HarperCollins is the publisher, and Alloy Entertainment is the true owner. Creative differences involving the presence of the Elena/Damon plot line have caused differences in opinion as to the future of the series, and it was decided that L.J. Smith would not continue to author the series, essentially firing her from the The Vampire Diaries books. She will be replaced by a ghostwriter.
In full, L.J. Smith states on her blog, "First, I want to thank my readers for all their messages of support. I’ve gotten far too many emails to answer, and I really appreciate the kindness and emotional sustenance you’ve given to me at this difficult time.
Second, if you’ve asked me a question about the future books or the endgame of The Vampire Diaries and I’ve been vague about what’s in store, I’d like to take this opportunity to apologize. I really wasn’t looking forward to the day when I would have to talk about this.
Third, and most importantly, I want to ask anyone who was thinking of it, not to boycott Harper’s or anyone. It just doesn’t make sense. Although I wanted and still want more than anything to be able to continue The Vampire Diaries series myself, there’s no point in not trying the new books. (And remember, for fans of Bonnie and Damon, and strict Stefan and Elena fans, the immediate dynamics may be more to your liking.) Besides which, Midnight, which is all mine, is coming out in March, and I believe there may be some of my writing in Phantom.
Thanks again to all the fans who have shown loving and loyal kindness to me."
I, for one, won't boycott HarperCollins, but I'm still appalled by the true meaning of working "for hire," and the liberties a series owner like Alloy can take...and I'm a little disgusted, too. Also, a note to fans of the show...this will NOT directly affect the TV series, so don't fret! What do you guys think?