I've only had nothing but the best of fortune working with Diamond.
The Starchild incident seems like simple human erro (while true, I was not there)...it only seemed like something (anything) could happen durring such a huge transition. I'm sure that absorbing Capitol was bound to be anything BUT a smooth transition.
I guess after reading the above, I just wanted to throw in my two cents be saying that I've been very happy with my Diamond dealings in the past.
They have been nothing but good to me, with all the pitfalls that self publishing brings.
My first rep, Glen Folland was wonderful to work with. He was the man who first brought TIMESPELL to Diamond. I'll never forget that, and his good news came to me the day before Christmas...making it the best holiday season to date.
I now have Chris Schaff as my rep, since Glen advanced within the company.
Chris has always been supportive, as has Chuck Parker and Mark Herr.
When my book was in trouble, we discussed options on ways to save it.
In the end, between retailer support, fan support and Diamond backing me up, my book prevailed from the brink of cancelation.
Since then I've met with my rep on several occasions to discuss ways to boost sales as I prepare the next arc and the trade paperback.
And while I may sound like things have always been rosy, there was an error...a simple human error duing the solicitation for the first issue of Timespell...which was readily corrected.
By mistake, Diamond listed Timespell #1 as an ashcan...not a first issue.
This forced me to do damage control by calling as many retailers as I could to point out the misprint in Previews on pg. 236. As a result, the retailers were thankful for my efforts, were happy (and surprised) that anyone would even go to the trouble to make those calls...and made a note to check out the book again when Diamond FIXED the situation by running it correctly in the next catalog.
I've stayed in touch with several of those retailers, and in a round about way...glad that the error took place.
It forced me to take a more personal approach to my book, instead of sitting in the basement wondering why sales sucked.
I guess what I'm saying is, even though mistakes are made, they are generally easy enough to fix. And while I've been to conventions where the topic of conversation has been "Diamond sucks, my book was canceled" or "Diamond sucks, they didn't pick my book up"...
...it's always easy to bitch but it's far harder work to do something about the situation to actually make it BETTER.