WWC Day 1: Anthology Jam

Panelists: Ron S. Friedman, Randy McCharles, Charles V. Prepolec

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Q: As a writer, how do you approach an anthology? How to you get in?

RM: There are two kinds of anthologies, open and closed. Open anthologies are exactly that. There will be an open submission period. Closed anthologies tend to be by invitation only and some are dedicated to a particular franchise or theme.

CP: Open anthologies are the only chance for newer writers to get published. They tend to be niche and specific. Pitching an anthology to a publisher is difficult these days. People aren’t reading them as much. You can check out the possibilities on ralan.com. Ralan’s good because it will list the rates as well as the contact information. Professional rates are like six cents a word or something like that. I think Innsmouth Free Press has an open call out for She Walks in Shadows, for Lovecraftian stories featuring a female protagonist or deity. Also check out Kickstarter (Mel’s note: I just did a quick search for anthologies and sorted by newest). It’s a way of guaging the market as well as raising funds. Some of them have open reading periods, for example, ChiZine Publications’ Fearful Symetries, which Ellen Datlow edited. Duotrope is another good place to go. It’s reasonable at $50 a year.

RM: Really, you have three options: magazine, open anthology, and collection. There’s no other way to get your short stories published.

Q: Do you write to a particular Anthology’s theme?

RM: Yes. I wrote to theme for Tesseracts: Parnassus Unbound.

CP: You can write to the market.

RF: If you write for a particular anthology and your story doesn’t make it, you can always submit it elsewhere.

RM: You write stories. Keep a “story drawer” and repurpose as required. I had five short stories that I cobbled together for Tesseracts 16. It was published in the anthology, the year’s best, and nominated for an Aurora. Sometimes it’s an issue of money vs. passion.

RF: You can also publish short fiction on Amazon. Kindle Singles.

Q: What rights go to the anthology?

CP: Usually for an anthology it’s first time print rights for about a year.

RM: Short fiction is a one time sale. There aren’t any royalties like for a novel.

RF: Rights are usually considered from date of publication, not date of sale.

RM: Anthologies love reprints because they feed back to sales for the originating anthology.

CP: Gaslight Grimoire had two stories picked up for other publications. You don’t want to be competing with yourself though. If you want to find out more about the market, you can check out The Market List, Writeaholics.net, Towse’s links to online submission guidelines.

RF: Check out the SFWA site as well.

Q: I’d recommend submission grinder.

CP: If you’re heading into this world for the first time, I’d also check things out on preditors and editors.

RM: Your goal isn’t just to sell, but you want to sell to a market that people read. Ask yourself, is this a market that people are reading? Send to the highest paying markets first. They usually have a larger readership.

RF: Bundoran Press will have an open submission period for Second Contact, September 15, 2014 to January 15, 2015.

CP: Small presses are more open to anthologies and collections. Prime Books – Sean Wallace. Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing – Brian Hades.

Q: How much material do editors request? Do you ever oversubscribe?

RM: Content or contributors may be assigned. Choose between five or six of these authors. The editor may choose. There is going to be a total word limit you have to stay within.

CP: We oversubscribe by about 30%. There will always be people who drop out or don’t follow through.

Q: Can a writer pitch an anthology?

CP: No. Editors, maybe. You could pitch a collection of your own stories, but not an anthology.


 

Tomorrow: The Next Chapter: August 2014 update.

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Caturday Quickies: Recent developments

So . . . I went to work Monday morning to learn that I had been successful in the Consultant process. Yes, I am now in another qualified pool. Treading water at the moment, thanks.

On Tuesday, Phil got a call from the municipal engineer. Apparently all the reports were in and they were ready to start work. He wanted to meet with us after work to discuss the plan and get our sign off on the work.

Our former front yard

Just a reminder of how things currently look

The plan they had come up with was to blast out the rock, rebury the gas line, build a three foot knee-wall, and then slope the yard down from the house to meet the knee-wall. They’d have to demolish and build a new set of front steps for us, because the slope on the yard would necessitate two much longer legs on pylons. The slope would be about 60 degrees.

Phil said, “Do we have any other options?”

He explained that the bus stops by our house, and we have kids who tromp through our yard on their ways home to the apartments up the hill. There are also a couple of bars down Regent Street whose inebriated, late-night patrons also seem fond of our yard. Should any of those individuals take a tumble down the 60 degree slope and off the three foot knee-wall, they could be injured. Worse, we’d be liable.

To his credit, the engineer agreed with Phil’s assessment and together they discussed options.

What are we going to get? A full six to seven foot retaining wall with a railing for safety. Much better.

Three quarters of our driveway will also be re-paved because it also has to be sloped properly. In the process, they will be re-seating the two water shut-off valves that are in the middle of the driveway. We’ve had persistent issues with frost heaving and buckling around those.

Though we’re basically losing the full easement from the front of our lot, the city is not going to be expropriating now and they seem perfectly content to leave us easement-less until the street is developed in X year’s time.

So yay!

I also had a wee setback with the video project I was working on, but found a permanent (and easy) solution within a day. Thank you, National Service Desk 🙂 Joy! This will make doing further videos super easy, and super fast, relatively speaking.

Now onto the next WWC2014 post: The Anthology Jam. All sorts of good information on getting your stories published in anthologies 🙂

Caturday Quickies

By the way, the kitteh in this blog image is our dearly departed Thufir (Howat, the Mentat Cat)