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Conversation With My Mother 2

Thorn Wilde

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'They're doing a premium short story collection at GA,' I said, 'for Pride. Coming out stories. Thought I might submit something, got a couple of ideas. I'd get paid, even.'

'That's nice,' she said vaguely. 'I think you should try to write some more . . . accessible stories, though. You know, stories you could sell.'

Did you not hear that I may in fact get paid? I sighed. 'I can only write the stories that come to me.'

She pursed her lips. 'Of course. But you could write something that more people will want to read.'

Have you ever even read one of my stories? I wanted to ask, but I didn't. 'The stories I write are important, though. Queer representation is important. Queer voices are important. Queer writers writing queer stories is important.'

'Well, yes . . . I'm just saying . . . If you'd like to get published, then—'

'I can self-publish. Thought I might put out my short stories.'

'Do people make money off that?'

'Some do. It's hard to find bigger publishing houses who'll publish the stuff I write. And this stuff is important, Mum. How many mainstream novels with queer protagonists written by queer writers can you name off the top of your head? Ones that have reached any real amount of critical acclaim?' I knew I was getting worked up. 'Queer representation in the media is really, really important. Did you know that the only queer actor to ever win an Oscar playing a queer role is Ian McKellan?'

'Really?' She fell silent, and I sighed.

'I have to write my stories,' I said softly, 'or there's no point.'

She let it drop. 'Oh, we're here. If you don't want Vietnamese we could go for something else.'

'No, Vietnamese is good,' I said. 'I feel like Pho.'

 

 

EDIT: Fun fact about self-publishing: The Martian, the book that got turned into a big movie with Matt Damon, that The Martian, started out being sold for Kindle for $0.20 or something like that. Guy who wrote it just wanted to give it away for free to his friends and they kept insisting on wanting to pay for it. So, yeah. Self-publishing can work.

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Self-publishing can work.

I read a lot of self-published stories, so I know they do work.

 Amazon is my usual source, but that’s only because I like the way the stories can be formatted on my Kindle. Some are free and some I pay for. I even “follow” some authors because I like what they write, so I like to watch out for new releases. 

As for the convo with your mom, you’re very brave, Thorn. My mom would probably be the same with some of the things I like or the way I think, so I avoid conversations when I know she’s going to be tone-deaf about it.

:hug: 

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50 minutes ago, Reader1810 said:

I read a lot of self-published stories, so I know they do work.

 Amazon is my usual source, but that’s only because I like the way the stories can be formatted on my Kindle. Some are free and some I pay for. I even “follow” some authors because I like what they write, so I like to watch out for new releases. 

As for the convo with your mom, you’re very brave, Thorn. My mom would probably be the same with some of the things I like or the way I think, so I avoid conversations when I know she’s going to be tone-deaf about it.

:hug: 

Mothers can be... difficult. I'm looking into publishing on Amazon. I really do want to put out a short story collection. I have a whole bunch of them, after all. I have like 30 short stories up on GA at the moment. I'd like to polish them and put them in a book. Plus a couple of others I haven't posted yet but that are in the works.

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When I worked in a bookstore in the ‘90s, Diana Gabaldon (Outlander) was the example that was always mentioned for an author who posted her work online (pre-internet!) and was picked up by a book publisher.
;–)
 

I’ve read quite a few free books on Amazon. The level of quality leaves something to be desired – there are many stories on GA that are far superior. My impression is that others have had better experiences with the quality of the free books they’ve been able to download. They have universally been better than most of what’s on Nifty.
;–)

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Thorn Wilde

Posted (edited)

6 hours ago, droughtquake said:

When I worked in a bookstore in the ‘90s, Diana Gabaldon (Outlander) was the example that was always mentioned for an author who posted her work online (pre-internet!) and was picked up by a book publisher.
;–)
 

I’ve read quite a few free books on Amazon. The level of quality leaves something to be desired – there are many stories on GA that are far superior. My impression is that others have had better experiences with the quality of the free books they’ve been able to download. They have universally been better than most of what’s on Nifty.
;–)

There's a lot of stuff on GA that ought by rights to be published. Sadly, not many mainstream publishers want to publish queer fiction unless it fits into the kind of narrative that most cis-het folks feel comfortable with reading.

I once had a drink with Diana Gabaldon's son, Sam Sykes. An excellent author in his own right, and the biggest shit-poster on Twitter. He's a pretty cool guy.

Edited by Thorn Wilde
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