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A Short Story Or a Novel? : Conversation question • Page 2 • Writing Forum | WritersDigest.com

A Short Story Or a Novel?

Every month in Writer's Digest's InkWell section, we pose a question related to the writing life. Tell us your thoughts.
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DrG2
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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby DrG2 » Sat Jan 24, 2015 10:29 pm

James, your experience conflicts with what I have seen from the magazines I've submitted to or considered submitting to.

When you write even Tor pays 25 cents a word, well Tor is the holy grail for SF/F writers. It is the only market I have submitted to that pays so well (and I've been rejected by the best!) other than Cricket/etc..

The New Yorker is so far out of the experience of an aspiring writer as to be irrelevant, imo (Duotrope lists 546 submissions to TNY with zero acceptances).

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Crono91
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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby Crono91 » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:39 pm

Guess it kind of depends what you're good at.

I can't think of many authors who both sell well in the novel market, and in the short story market. Yes there are quite a few, but in ratio to all the authors on the market, I'd say there aren't many (I always say be careful when basing the writing norm on big time, largely public authors, because that's not the norm, and we just think it's the norm because of availability heuristic.

As far as the writers I personally know, they tend to either be short story writers or novel writers--yes they all tend to dip their hands in both, and desire to be good at both, but usually have their eggs in a particular basket. (Granted, the writers I know are around my age, and thus don't have the age and experience to usually have skill in both.)

I focus on novels--mainly because I LOVE creating a large, expansive story. Usually in the light of a trilogy.

Many times stories come to mind that feel like they could only be a short story or novelette, but I suck at writing them.

---

I say be careful when modeling yourself after what sells. Most of the time, we need to be aware of what sells and make sure we are paralleling ourselves. However, there are also times when we need to avoid that.

I once stopped working on the first book in my trilogy, because I read it's hard for new writers to sell trilogies, and they should enter the market with a standalone novel first. So, that's what I did. I worked on my standalone, but halfway through, I realized I wasn't have any fun writing it. I went and reread what I had written for my trilogy novel and simply re-fell in love with it, and went back to it.

Will I have a much harder time selling it? Yes.
Do I care? No.
This is what I love.
Be proud of your mistakes when they form from blinding passion. But now edit them.

James A. Ritchie
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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby James A. Ritchie » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:59 pm


James A. Ritchie
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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby James A. Ritchie » Sun Jan 25, 2015 5:41 pm


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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby Crono91 » Sun Jan 25, 2015 5:52 pm

Be proud of your mistakes when they form from blinding passion. But now edit them.

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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby James A. Ritchie » Sun Jan 25, 2015 10:41 pm


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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby Crono91 » Mon Jan 26, 2015 12:48 am

Be proud of your mistakes when they form from blinding passion. But now edit them.

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Re: A Short Story Or a Novel?

Postby James A. Ritchie » Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:51 am


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