Monday, January 5, 2009

A Vision In Perpetual Motion: 2008 short story anthology

My intention when exploring a little further each of my action plan points from yesterday was to do it chronologically - because after all that would make sense, but that's just not the way it's going to happen.

Today is the first day back of the working year for Annie and I with our partners (patrons-of-the-arts) back at their desk jobs. First cab off the rank was to decide which of the stories we'd written over the last year we'd put into our 2008 anthology.

Late last year our ebook Reclaim Sex After Birth: the survival guide was added to the list of books on the Buy Australian Books website which was created to support homegrown writers. As I was looking through the lists of authors and books an idea sprang to mind - what if Annie and I as emerging Australian writers were to compile a best of from 2008, package it up as a downloadable ebook and market it through the Buy Australian Books site. All it would cost us was our time and perhaps we might find a market for our short stories.

And that's exactly what Annie, Paul and I are in the process of. I'm grateful for the fact that in August I audited all the stories that I had - so I had an almost up to date list of stories to choose from. (Note: If you don't have a list of your work - I really recommend that you do it, sooner rather than later.) I also had the moment of wondering if I had 10 stories good enough to contribute to an anthology - guess what? I was pleasently surprised. Reading back on lots of them I had forgotten how good some of them were - but also how terrible some also were. After whittling it down, then expanding it out, and whittling it down again I came up with a dozen stories - one for each month of the year.

I'm proud to announce that my list of short stories for inclusion will be:

  1. 24
  2. Pegasus
  3. Haefestus
  4. Hiesha
  5. Intercontinental
  6. Repatriation
  7. The Giant Falls
  8. A Valentines Tale
  9. Andrew Said
  10. Deck the Balls
  11. Don't Tell, Alice
and a twelfth currently unnamed story from last years photo competition at Write Anything. Hopefully it will be a good range of work that I have done - though there isn't any sci-fi in there because of the nature of the pieces - they don't stand alone.

Next job is to get them edited up, proof read and laid out ... all the things that as a writer I have been avoiding like plague. I have been selective in what I have chosen. I've have kept a small stock of stories for submission to competitions and for other publishing projects that are in the wings - and I've also steered clear of anything that came in two parts, or was part of a larger body of writing (such as any of the Adam and Eve stories - thus no sci-fi!)

If you want to read any of these stories for free - your time is running out. In the next week or so they will all be taken down off the blog forever.

At this point in time guesstimated price for the anthology will be $15-$20 Australian dollars and will be compatible with Kindles, iPhones and other hand held reading devices. The anthology will be available through this blog (and my soon to be launched personal website) and will also be submitted for consideration to Buy Australian Books.

Why do this?

Why not?
  • Self publishing is cheap - I have the programs, the expertise and the material. It makes sense.
  • Traditional publishing opportunities are becoming rarer, especially for emerging writers - so if we don't create or seize the opportunites presented by new techonology, we're going to be left behind.
  • There's the possiblity of making a buck - and wouldn't it be lovely to say that I get paid to write.
  • Creating this puts it out to the Universe that I not only want to be read, but I want to be paid for what I write. And that I am serious about what I do.
  • It establishes a publishing history for my work and creates a publishing profile for some other endeavours waiting to be born.
Without this anthology these stories would simply be gathering virtual dust on my blog or on my hard drive, which doesn't do justice to these great stories, to the time and effort that I've put in, or for my professional development as a writer.

I'll be back with an update on this project and would love your feedback also.

Do you have a collection of short stories doing nothing big? What are you planning to do with them?

1 comment:

Paul said...

Do I need to be looking for another two stories now to match your twelve?