L.J. Smith Confirms Vampire Diaries Rumours

Thursday, February 10, 2011

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?


  1. This is just sad all around. I would never be able to work for a company like Alloy, because it would break my heart to have my characters ripped away from me like that.

    I could never boycott Harper, I love them too much. That being said, I probably won't be reading any of the new TVD books from the ghostwriter. If it won't be ending with a Team Damon ending, I don't want to know about it! lol

  2. I think that the authoress should start another series and should let her lawyers read all the contracts three times before she signs anything. Sad but necessary.

  3. Ok, forgive me sounding like a conspiracy theorist, but of course she has to say that. I am sure it's part of her contract (can you imagine the legal liabilities she could face if she supported a boycott?) plus her next book is being published by HC.

    If I was a fan I would not boycott HC, but I would boycott the books in the series that proceed that are not written by her.

    Hurt them with your pocket books. That is what will get them to listen.

    Overall, this is a crying shame that for some reason I did not fully understand until just now.

    Great post!

  4. I've only read the first two books - and loved them - but this does bother me. I actually do think a Damon-Elena ending would rock (both in the books and the show, because Damon's just more interesting and complex).

    It's so sad for LJ Smith to have no control over it, and to be kicked off a series she's put a lot of effort into. I think I'll continue catching up on the series, but I might just stop once I reach the ones she didn't write (I'm not really that big of a fan when it comes to ghostwritten books, especially if the author is still capable and willing to continue the series).

    That's just the downside of work for hire...there's no guarantee you get to do things your way.

  5. HarperCollins has a storied history of treating people this way. Look up the Author of Priscilla the Great and see what they did to her.

    I understand that L.J Smith doesn't want anyone to boycott HC because it would spell doom for her professional career. The literary industry is extremely vindictive and would crush her like a bug if they thought she crossed them publicly.

  6. Becky's Barmy Book Blog has awarded you the 'One Lovely Blog' Award. Congrats.

  7. Sorry, just read your thing about awards. Don't feel obligated to do the post thing, Read it just as i hit send. :)
    still want to honour the fact your blog rocks!!!

  8. This whole thing is interesting (and sad!)... thanks for keeping us updated, Melissa.

    I'm really looking forward to hearing what you think of Matched... everyone seems to love it or hate it!

  9. This is sad on many levels but one good thing out of this is that aspiring authors may become more aware of how important it is to create contracts that protect your work and your rights.

  10. Was someone holding a gun to her back when she typed that? I just think it's always been her series and she should be allowed to finish it. Would Stephanie Meyer had a ghost writer for any of her books? I think not. Alloy and Harper Collins are cheating both her fans and L J Smith.


  11. Is anything affected if we signed the petition? Is that going anywhere? Will HC see it? I signed it only signed it because I didn't feel it was right for a ghostwriter to write her books. Not to boycott HC. They publish wonderful books. But did you know she is working on another series? The Secret Circle. It's kind of companion to The Vampire Diaries and will be developed by Kevin Williamson for the CW. So she is working on that project. I don't know what to think about this whole thing. It still doesn't make sense to cut someone out of writing a book they created originally.

  12. I think it is wrong! It LJ Smith creation not HarperCollins and she should be able to be finish anyway she likes. I am surprised that they would do this.

  13. I think that I read somewhere that she is still receiving royalties for the books (and perhaps future books?!?)... I wonder if that is true.

  14. I haven't read any of L. J. Smith's books, being all-vampired-out, but I think it's wicked that the publishers take her story, her baby and then say, "thanks for doing the hard work, we'll take it from here." How dare they deny her authorship of her own story? How dare they deny the story, her character she knows better than anyone else can, the ending that is right for them? They think they know better? This is sickening.

  15. This is terrible and sad! I feel so sorry for the author. Vampire Diaries is L. J Smith's creation! All this seems so unethical to me.

  16. As A writer myself, I was told I own my book, When I see that someone took away those rights from a fellow writer it sickens me. But a true writer's  soul can not be stolen. There fore you are still writing and your idea's will be in your own creation. Protect this one, my dear creator. Any one that knows you and  your soul , that knows your way of writing can never be stolen or destroyed, because it is as individual  as your fingerprint, God made us that way for a reason! 

  17. she had written a manuscript for secret circle 2 but this was rejected by alloy, who own both this series and vampire diaries.
    Secret circle will be ghostwritten 2, starting from the divide.
    The original series from the 90's is all l.j.smith
    And the reviews for the ghostwritten books are terrible!
    thank god for that

  18. i couldn't find much, can u explain further, also the owner of the series is alloy entertainment, not harpercollins, there just the publisher.
    And yeah it is confusing!


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