As some of you know I am looking to become a professional author, generally defined as an author that gets paid for his work, but I’ve always said I’d be happy just to see my name in print under a publisher other than me. I’m not picky, I just want to be able to go to a newsstand, bookstore, or online media that I don’t produce, and see my name attached to something I wrote. Now, as I wait for a response from my last hope to get my first fully finished short story into a magazine, I’m trying to wrap my brain around the realization that I might have to do something that grates against my old fashion ideas about writing. I might just have to convert it into an e-book format *shudder* and put it up on Amazon!
I had previously told myself, if Wastelander (that’s the title of my short) is rejected by this last chance, ironically the magazine is called The Rejected Quarterly, that I would try to shop it as a graphic novel. The drawback to that is it would have to be rewritten into a comic/script-like format, taking me away from other writing projects. On top of that I would have to convince a company to take the story, and find me an art team to finish the book. Not many comic writers break in without having previous work, or already on a team with an artist, inker, colorer, etc. It would pretty much be more of a long shot than trying to get it into a magazine. I also don’t want to revisit this story if I don’t have to. It’s finished, and as just about every writer can tell you that’s a hard thing to do, call a work done. They want to go back and tweak and polish until the end of time but you have to just finally say “It’s done!” Well It’s Done!
So, this leaves me with a connundrum. I want to get this story out, I want it available in as wide a blanket as possible, and I am not yet ready to just post my stuff willy nilly online for free. It can hurt your chances for future contracts on the work, should someone like it. It also tends to get nasty when someone develops a fan base on free stuff, and then decides they want to start providing for their family using their talent, and tries selling stuff. All of a sudden your fan base gets hostile and words like ‘sell-out’ and ‘mainstream’ get thrown in your face. I’d rather avoid that if I can.
So, at the end of the day, I think I’m going to play with the idea of following in the footsteps of MP3s and microtransactions. Maybe not a new concept, but hey, if someone is willing to pay 99 cents for a 90 second song, why not 99 cents for a short story? It will sure last longer, and hopefully be more entertaining. Amazon allows authors to sell their work on the site, I just have to convert the story into an e-book format and put it up. I’m thinking .pdf so that just about anyone can access it, I’m not a fan of the proprietary e-book software that everyone seems to use. Maybe when these companies get over themselves and come up with a generic format I’ll jump on the e-reader bandwagon.
Anyway, you’ve listened to me ramble about this for long enough I think. Hopefully a little peek into one of my other hobbies was interesting enough to get to the end of this post, because now I’m going to share an opportunity.
I would like Frags and Beer to be something like an online gaming magazine, offering articles to readers one at a time, as often as possible, basically giving them more than a magazine’s worth of content every month. For free. (Yah I know what I said up there). Anyway, if you would like to write an article for us, please feel free to submit your piece to us at my email: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll look at it, probably proof it, maybe get back to you for clarification or editing, and if it fits the bill I’ll post it with your credit of course. Obviously there isn’t any pay for this, we don’t charge for the blog. So, requirements? Post length should be reasonable, we don’t really have a short or long limit yet. Should be geek-esque in nature, take a look at the site to see the kinds of things we post about. Also, nothing profane, too adult, pornographic, religious or overtly political. If it fits a category we’ll toss it one. If it needs a new category, or you are a recurring poster, we’ll give it one.
Well, that’s it for now, stay tuned for another look at Planetside 2, more Zombie Watch, and a couple of Pointless Geek Debates in the cooker. Until next time.