The long and short of it - making a living through short works

Discussion in 'Short Stories' started by Ruckus, Feb 23, 2019.

?

Do you believe it is possable for writer to make a living from short works alone.

  1. Sure -

    5 vote(s)
    41.7%
  2. Nope -

    3 vote(s)
    25.0%
  3. only if your a well establish writer

    4 vote(s)
    33.3%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Rzero

    Rzero Reluctant voice of his generation Contributor

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    I'm sorry. I honestly didn't know you or anyone had answered that before. I've done searches and couldn't find threads about it. I know criteria varies from publisher to publisher. I figured you'd know enough to save me having to read the guidelines from twenty sites, which you did. I appreciate the info.
     
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  2. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    I didn't mean to get snippy with you or anyone else here. I get that people want feedback on their work. All I'm saying is there is a risk involved when it comes to posting something online you later hope to sell to a magazine. The chances of publishing a short story are slim enough already. I don't want even the possibility of another strike against me. People don't seem to like that answer. It seems like they want to hear that it's okay and that this is something that won't later cause problems. No one can give that kind of assurance, especially as any sort of blanket statement. And from what I know of the marketplace, the opposite is true. However, no matter what you decide to do there is no substitute for reading the submission guidelines. Most of them won't even mention this issue, but the guidelines about formatting, word count, if simultaneous submissions are allowed and so forth differ from publication to publication. You've got to read the guidelines. And I do wish you luck with the whole submission process.
     
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  3. Rzero

    Rzero Reluctant voice of his generation Contributor

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    That's fine. It was exactly the info I needed. See this other stuff about reading guidelines, that's easy enough to find. I know from my research that it's considered vital to not only consult the individual websites and read them thoroughly (I read a couple out of curiosity a few months ago,) but also to read as many copies of the magazines as you can before you submit word one. What I hadn't come across, for some reason, was this specific question and the one you answered for me about a week ago regarding submitting the same story to multiple publishers at once. Your answers weren't surprising, but you never know until you know, right? Sometimes people just want you to confirm whatever they want to be true. I know that's annoying. I hope it makes you feel better to know that I found both answers very helpful. I'm not ready to submit anything, but you may have saved me from ruining the chances of several pieces in coming months, so thank you.
     
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  4. Ruckus

    Ruckus Banned

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    Maybe I should structure my questions or responses better. I type as I think often and am only looking for more clarification if only for my own monkey mind. The more I write, and expose myself to the world as a writer, the more I want to understand everything and extract all the knowledge I can from the people who have a better understanding then I do.
     
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  5. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll I said I write, didn't say good. :P Supporter Contributor

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    Yeah, to rely on self-pubbed work, you kinda have to spam the market
    and hope to gain some traction. Like youtube, amazon is more about
    quantity over quality.
    Make of that what you will, but that is how it is now a days.

    Good luck. :)
     
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  6. thirdwind

    thirdwind Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    I think it's possible, but it takes a lot of time and luck. It can take months from when a story is accepted to when it's published, so you would have to churn out many, many stories every year. If you do want to go this route, my advice would be to find a "day job" that pays the bills until you find yourself in a comfortable financial situation from publishing stories. Good luck!
     
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  7. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Pimpin' ain't easy, but it sure is fun.... Contributor

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    I'd be fascinated to know what the short story cash flow numbers are. Like how much readers pay annually for short fiction and how much flows back out to the authors. I couldn't even begin to guess what that would look like... what we in the restaurant business refer to as the "pie." Like the pie in my town (which aint that big) is well over a $1 billion annually, which basically means there's plenty to eat for whoever can do it well. Be awesome to know what the short story writing pie is worth.
     
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  8. matwoolf

    matwoolf Contributor Contributor

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    That would make a great intro:

    'In my business we call it pie. The greenback pie, y'know your dollars on the plate...'

    The gentleman wiped his lips. Margaret shuddered trapped here in the window seat aside the slobbering salesman.

    'Books,' she said, 'world literature,' she squealed almost.

    'Can't eat no books, babe.'

    His ham palm smacked against her kneecap.

    'Help,' she cried to nobody, her own lips tight like a wire, like a barbed wire, and she dreamed of a machine gun emplacement with [EDIT]. Thousands of the slobbering salesmen emerging ed over the top. Her muzzle swept the battlefield.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2019
    deadrats, Homer Potvin and Cave Troll like this.

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