This is something I was thinking about when I was reading through Vanessa Matthews’ blog last month. What should I do with my short stories when May is over?
Throughout the month, I’ll post some of them on this blog, but I wanted to see what I could do with the rest of them and, if they’re good enough, it seems as good an idea as any to submit them somewhere.
I started investigating this through Duotrope, a site that has a massive database of publishers. About a week or so ago, I made a list of 31 different places I could possibly submit to, though obviously I won’t be submitting to all of them. To be honest, I don’t know if I’ll submit to any at all, but there’s no point in ruling it out.
The main thing I’ve found out, when I’ve scouted around for information on this topic, is that I have to keep an eye out for ‘first rights’; that is, whether something has been published before or not. As far as I can tell, publishing something means that it has been published in a magazine/anthology/whatever, by a third party – but also, if you publish it on your own blog and make it available for everyone to read. Most places like first electronic rights, so publishing to my blog would take these pieces out of the picture. However, some do accept reprints – so these pieces would apply there.
Some opinions seem to vary on whether or not publishing to your blog but then restricting access to a piece – i.e., by password-protecting a post, counts as publication or not. Most people seem to think this doesn’t, but I have seen a few people who aren’t sure, so that is something that should be ascertained before posting.
Short post, because I’ve got to get ready for all my May challenges, which begin in… 10 minutes! Ahh! Still, is anyone thinking of submitting any of their May stories? I look forward to reading the ones people post on their blogs!
(Incidentally, for an interesting result of last year’s challenge, check out what Morgen Bailey did – she compiled all her stories into one collection and it’s out as an ebook! Looks good! )