“The ‘build it and they will come’ approach works in movies, but seldom in real life. ‘Discoverability ‘ is key-how will readers find your work? today’s writers are urged fo build a ‘platform.’ become masters of social media, develop a fan base, and mold a personal brand. For now, let’s just talk about how to get a short story into a place where people will find it and read it.
“Unless you write only for yourself, think about where and how you’d like to publish your story before you even begin writing. there are large markets fro some stories and smaller markets for others, so do some research and check out the outlets that are available.” Page 135 of How to Write Winning Short Stories.
There are many more good tips in this book. It’s available at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/How-Write-Winning-Short-Stories-ebook/dp/B01BHYO13E/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1458925237&sr=1-1&keywords=nancy+sakaduski
Often one hears that if the writer has a good story, it will sell even if the writing is poorly done. Unfortunately this is not often the case. Yes, spelling counts! A good story deserves the kind of attention that Nancy offers in her book. If the writer does what is suggested, at least follow the mechanics from page 53 to 124, he or she has a pretty good chance of being competitive. Especially check out the often overlooked category of “Voice” which is often completely overlooked by the writer.
Nancy has the experience and knows her stuff. She is an award-winning writer and editor who owns Cat & Mouse Press and runs the Rehoboth Beach Short Story Contest, which attracts entries from across the United States. She helps writers perfect their short stories and prepare them for publication, and offers writing tips and advice through her blog and newsletters. Nancy is the author of 23 books (including Scientific English, which she co-authored with Robert A. Day). Nancy founded Cat & Mouse Press, a small independent publishing company in Lewes, DE, to create “playful” books with a connection to the Delaware shore and provide a way for new and emerging writers to have their work published. She enjoys working with writers to help them perfect their writing and experience the joys of publication. Nancy writes for children and adults. One of her children’s books, Passport to History: Ancient Greece, was named best social studies book by the Society of School Librarians International, and “Mapping the Mind,” which appeared in Odyssey magazine, won the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Award for Nonfiction. She served as the developmental editor for Global Energy Innovation: Why America Must Lead, a book by Nobel Peace Prize winner Woodrow Clark II. Two books she edited, The Beach House and Sandy Shorts, and one book she authored, A Rehoboth ABC, won national first-place awards from the National Federation of Press Women. Cat & Mouse Press is a member of the Independent Book Publishers Association and the Mid-Atlantic Book Publishers Association, and is active on Facebook and Twitter. Visit the website at: www.catandmousepress.com.
Here’s a picture of Nancy at work.
An additional thought is that the index of Nancy’s book is a truly beneficial writer guide. It probably contains the best collection of current articles by experts on the writing of short stories.
Editor’s note: Put this in a sign over the writing desk. It is Chekov’s immortal recommendation, a welcome admonition to writers:
“If there is a gun hanging on the wall in the first act, it must fire in the last.”
-Litvinov translation of letters, May 10 1886, The Stories of Anton Chekov, Matlaw, WW Norton 1979