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Thread: Posting fluff on your blog - a bad idea?

  1. #1
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    Posting fluff on your blog - a bad idea?

    Ok... let's say you've had several dozen short stories published in past years, many of which have disappeared from circulation since the webzine on which they appeared is defunct or the antho/magazine is out of print. And yes, you have the right to reprint them as you only sold the first rights for an exclusive duration of six months, or whatever. Now, the stories are not necessarily THAT crap as they were published in paying marketing, so somebody liked them... but they are significantly less deep than the novels you are getting ready to publish, which are not literary masterpieces themselves, but a step above the completely mindless fun of the shorts.

    Is it a good idea to reprint said silly romps on your blog, or do you run too much risk of turning away readers who assume your novels are equally shallow?

  2. #2
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    If you have a few dozen shorts available, and all rights have definitely now reverted to you, I'd have thought you'd do better publishing them on Kindle and SmashWords. You'll generate a little income for yourself, which I'm sure would be nice, while also reaching people who might well be interested in your forthcoming novels.

    They might be different in levels of darkness but if you're anything like most other writers I know (and I know a few) there'll be a similarity of tone which will carry through to your other work.

    You're probably far more likely to reach new readers on Amazon than you are on your blog, too. Unless your blog is wildly popular.

  3. #3
    practical experience, FTW
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    Agree with Old Hack here - speaking as a reader, I'm far more likely to grab a story for my Kindle than read it on a blog. In your position, I'd be tempted to put half a dozen on Kindle, make the first one free and the other five cheap, and see how that went before deciding what to do with the others.
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  4. #4
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    What about the cost of cover art though, or are shorts not expected to have professional quality cover art (pretty new to this obviously)?

  5. #5
    practical experience, FTW
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    If you're halfway decent with a photo editing program and a camera, you can make a tolerable cover. I do plan on putting a pro cover on the short I have posted when I can afford one.

    You might be able to get a cheaper cover if you contact an art school and hire a student. I would never ask anyone to work for free, though.

  6. #6
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    We have a whole room dedicated to art and design, which has a special area for discussions related to covers. It might be worth dropping by there, reading about a bit, and perhaps asking a few questions.

  7. #7
    Heckuva good sport frimble3's Avatar
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    If you then point out the presence of the short stories on your blog, you have something to blog about, get to do a little advertising, and get a chance to explain that the forthcoming book will be different, that these are not just samples and out-takes.

  8. #8
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    So I put one out that wasn't on the blog for Kindle, but would you suggest taking the ones already on the blog off before publishing them there as well?

  9. #9
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    I didn't see that anyone mentioned this, but most first rights publications expect to be credited as first publisher. If you no longer have the details of your agreement to confirm this, you should credit them in your collection just to be safe.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Hack View Post
    If you have a few dozen shorts available, and all rights have definitely now reverted to you, I'd have thought you'd do better publishing them on Kindle and SmashWords. You'll generate a little income for yourself, which I'm sure would be nice, while also reaching people who might well be interested in your forthcoming novels.

    They might be different in levels of darkness but if you're anything like most other writers I know (and I know a few) there'll be a similarity of tone which will carry through to your other work.

    You're probably far more likely to reach new readers on Amazon than you are on your blog, too. Unless your blog is wildly popular.
    I second this. Shorts are selling now--or rather, compilations of shorts. I wish I had a bunch of them sitting around. As it is, I only have a few, and only one posted on my blog. That one little story gets a decent number of hits. (of course, it just occurred to me that someone might think it's another book until they click on the link. Hmmm...maybe I should clarify that in the link.)

    I know a guy who has several books consisting of nothing but drabbles. He finds a theme and writes drabbles having to do with that theme, and then he also has invited other authors to submit one. I donated one myself. I don't get a cut but it links to my author page, so it's a win--and in my case, it was a triple drabble (exactly 300 words or a short flash fiction).

    While he doesn't get rich with these book, he's sold well over a thousand books, all told.

  11. #11
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Drabbles?

  12. #12
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Hack View Post
    Drabbles?
    Flash fiction of exactly 100 words, not always counting the title.
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  13. #13
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Thank you. I was wondering what Margaret had to do with such brief fiction, but guessed she wasn't involved.

  14. #14
    Wicked Safari release date March 17 gingerwoman's Avatar
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    I feel people are maybe not addressing all of the original question which is....if you know you've improved as a writer is it a good idea to publish or give away your old shorts when you know your new long novels are so much better?
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  15. #15
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Ah.

    In that case, I'd revise them substantially and if I could make them good enough I'd decide what to do with them at that point.

    Putting less-than-stellar work up on your blog is never a good idea if you intend it to be a marketing tool.

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