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>> No. 6486 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 12:32 pm
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I know we have a few writerlads on gs, I was wondering if any of you could give some advice on getting work out there and seen?

I've been submitting my short stories to small zines for years now but nobody seems to read them and the zines themselves tend to be neglected and disappear after not much more than a year or so.
I can't find an audience and it feels like I'm getting nowhere.
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>> No. 6487 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 1:30 pm
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Sadly, the market for short stories is vanishingly small and has been for many years. In short fiction, the ratio of readers to writers is hopelessly unbalanced. You can get your stories on Kindle at no cost through Kindle Direct Publishing[1], but you're probably not going to shift any copies unless your stories are mummy porn.

If you're determined to get published, I'd suggest picking up a copy of the Writers and Artists Yearbook[2]. It's a massive list of magazines, publishers and literary agents, plus a lot of useful advice for aspiring writers.

Have you considered podcasting? There's a growing market for fiction podcasts, spurred by the success of Night Vale. It isn't difficult or expensive to put together a podcast. All you need is a USB microphone, a voice and an idea.

[1] https://kdp.amazon.com/
[2] https://www.amazon.co.uk/Writers-Artists-Yearbook-2017/dp/1472927656
>> No. 6488 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 1:37 pm
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I don't care about selling the short stories, I'd just like to have people interested in reading them so there's at least a minimal audience who'd be interested when I finally finish writing a novel.

You're right, I'll have to get an up-to-date W&AY, thanks.

You need to have a constant flow of new material for podcasts so you can put them out regularly, I'm not sure that's a realistic option.
>> No. 6489 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 4:12 pm
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I had my first book out this year and have just got a deal for another which I have to finish before the end of the year. There certainly isn't much money in it but the gratification and the fan mail etc are wonderful.

Around the start of 2014 I was writing extended facebook entries and getting some great feedback from people on my friends list there. It's embarrassing to admit to this as social networking is often a nauseating experience, but without that small audience to play to regularly and try to beat the last number of 'likes' I never would have finished a book, or been published. I've never submitted a manuscript to anywhere in my life and both publishers approached me after becoming aware of my fb micro-fame. I guess my experience is fairly unique/lucky and this is largely unhelpful, but I'd say it would help to widen your horizons from the small zine thing (which I did for years myself and at least it was practise at writing).
>> No. 6490 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 7:02 pm
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What kind of fanmail? Is it dirty? Do you touch yourself while reading them?
>> No. 6491 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 8:08 pm
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I've had an idea for a book since around 2012/2013, I'd been letting it 'compost', as I think the phrase goes, for around 2 years, just fleshing out the backstory, setting, potential plot lines - everything but the characters. I hadn't been trained, and I'd try to absorb any information I could find online that would improve my technique. I started writing characters in specific situations an exercise, something I've been doing again recently, because I'd neglected just how important one character trait could end up being to drive the book forward. I was focusing first on plot points, whereas now I'm focusing on the characters first, with a loose plot and the ending in mind, and despite having a lot of notes and a lot in mind, for me (and I'd imagine most writers, but I don't know any) there's always going to be some spontaneity whilst writing in which the characters will behave in a way and so end up changing what you had planned. That's the stuff that makes it particularly fun and engaging for me.

I've since had a couple of other ideas for novels, and I don't know if this one is the right one to start with, as it's fairly (don't want to say it but) epic in scope and in scale. Speaking of scope, I'd tried to construct my notes using the snowflake method, but it didn't work for me. Now I tend to think of the themes, the mood of what I'm writing, and what I'm trying to make the reader feel. From there the rest grows much more organically, before it felt like I was forcing it. Knowing the themes, I can build characters that would best experience those themes, carrying the emotional intensity of the novel and allowing the reader to relate. I already had the story in mind, so then it's backdrop, setting, and plot points, followed by research. Then I'll get some prose done, and revisit and edit it some time later, when I'm not as prescient on what I was trying to achieve, so I have a better idea of if it works or not - not including loose threads to be tied up later.

There's plenty of ways to approach writing a book, but arriving at the above method after some trial and error has improved both my understanding of how to construct the writing, putting myself in the position of the reader, and also just writing for at least an hour, whenever possible, really helps. Even if it's shit, you can go back and revise it, and if it's utter garbage, at least you've made that mistake and can move away from it.
>> No. 6492 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 8:12 pm
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I know this isn't that relevant, but as I say, I don't know any writers, and I wanted to share what I've discovered as I've tried to become a competent writer. I'm at the stage of writing short stories and bits and pieces of this novel. I think that I would self-publish, if I was able to put a bit of money away and maybe pay for some marketing. I don't have any hopes for making money by selling what I've written, I'm just hugely passionate about it. But there's also websites that will publish books in a better-than-amateur quality for you, like www.lulu.com
>> No. 6493 Anonymous
8th September 2016
Thursday 9:23 pm
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That's not particularly helpful for my situation as I'm shooting myself in the foot by refusing to approach it from a social media angle, but well done. I have a small writer's circle on a nom-de-plume facebook account who, while they're generally more complimentary about my work than anyone else's, aren't really what I'd call fans or an audience.

Personally I'd avoid self-publishing at all. It seems like a shortcut that means you don't get the real validation of beating the literary gate-keepers of publishing, regardless of how much you make from it.
>> No. 6494 Anonymous
9th September 2016
Friday 12:52 am
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I have had sex with four attractive women a lot younger than me as a direct result of my extremely modest literary success. It sort of helped that I became single at the same time as the book was coming out. But actually it is also really nice getting feedback from random readers in far-off countries I've never met and probably never will - makes me feel like a more useful human being.
>> No. 6495 Anonymous
9th September 2016
Friday 6:08 pm
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I have no idea what you're all talking about but couldn't you sell short stories as radio programs?
>> No. 6496 Anonymous
9th September 2016
Friday 6:27 pm
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You'd need to find a buyer. Here that basically means the BBC. You'd need to find the right commissioning editor during the right commissioning round, not to mention an idea of who might read some of the parts in your play for voices.

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