Writing Update: A New Frontier

This is the last week to get in nominations for the Aurora Award, one of Canada’s speculative fiction awards (also fan works and art). If you’re Canadian and want to nominate and vote you can go here to do so.

writing, publishing, self-publishing, anthologies, collection, Aurora Awards, poetry, fiction, speculative fiction

Creative Commons: Drew Coffman, Flickr

I was also shortlisted for the Friends of Merril contest. The results will be posted in the next day or two and while I don’t know who won, alas, it was not me. Writing is always an evolution and I’m always writing better than I did before but I still have work to do. Sometimes my pacing is off. It’s the elusive golden ring for me and I’m trying new ways to master this. My story was off on pacing and thus is did not win. But it was one of 9 shortlisted out of over 100. That’s not so bad.

I actually have a few stories right now in what I call the bridesmaid stage. They’ve made it out of the slush pile and the editor has contacted me to say they’re holding them for further consideration…but they have not yet been picked. I also looked at the edits for “Gingerbread People” due out in Chilling Tales 2 from Edge Publications in 2013 now. They edits were light and mostly punctuation/spelling related. This story was a look at the nature of evil; is the person who does the crime more evil than the

person who masterminds and gets the other person to do it. The idea came out of the true tale of Paul Bernardo and Carla Homolka, convicted serial killers who did horrible things to several teenage girls.

Self-publishing requires using all the marketing tools. Creative Commons: Kristina B, flickr

I’m also considering a new venture. I wanted to have a collection of my stories published. This would be mostly a reprintcollection, with one or two new tales tossed in. With stories, they sometimes appear in a magazine or anthology somewhere, for a brief time and are never seen again. It would collect those works and make them available to a wider readership. I thought of sending these to several publishers, but truth be told I’m not enough of a name for most publishers to consider my collection. There are many indie publishers who would but I think for a reprint collection I’m going to go the route of self-publishing.

Many people take this route but don’t do well. There are several things to consider; writing skill, editing, proofreading, distribution and marketing. Since I’m an accomplished (as in published more than once) writer as well as a freelance copyeditor, my work is going to be cleaner than a lot of self-published works. Plus these stories have been published at least once before. If I go with Smashwords and CreateSpace it covers the ereaders and print publication as well as distribution. Marketing is something that people have to do themselves these days. This  means posting to Facebook, doing Twitter, using Goodreads and this blog.  And, when I go to conventions I’ll need to promote there as well.

I have the collection mostly together already though I’m going to review the titles in there. I was going to call it Transformations and Temptations of the Wayward Soul but I might just call it Transformations and Temptations. This will be an interesting process and my first venture into self-publishing so I’ll post how it goes.  Stay tuned.

March has been a productive month writing wise. I’ve done two rewrites, finished and written three stories, started a fourth and worked a bit on the novel. I’ve also tentatively started a series of poems that will go under the title of A Compendium of Witches. Of course I hope to have 13 poems in that series.  And that’s the writing world to date for me.

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