While the NSB news has quieted down a bit since this: http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/publisher-news/article/56733-skyhorse-start-offer-night-shade-authors-new-terms.html
I saw an announcement yesterday that might have slipped through the cracks as people processed the horrible events in Boston:
The Underland title I’m most familiar with is the magnificent Finch, the capstone novel of Jeff VanderMeer’s Ambergris series/triptych/giant squid love-fest. I’ve had the chance to chat with Victoria Blake, the publisher at Underland, several times, and pitched Shield & Crocus to her a couple years back. She didn’t have a place for it on her list, but she was very gracious and professional.
Depending on how these two deals go through, we might now see why Skyhorse/Start wanted to buy Night Shade’s assets (the books) without wanting to buy the company outright. If Underland is in better financial shape, Skyhorse can bring their SF/F/H out with the Underland brand, maintaining some brand continuity. I don’t know if this will be the case, however. Skyhorse/Start might just be gathering what resources and assets they think will put them in the best position to enter the spec fic publishing world with the best chances of success.
With combined lists, Skyhorse/Start will instantly become one of the larger non-Big-Six/Five publishers of SF/F/H, joining Angry Robot Books, Pyr Books, ChiZine Publications, Prime Books, and the other notable independent SF/F/H publishers. I’m very curious to meet the folks at Skyhorse and help welcome them into the spec fic publishing community.