Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Market Deaths

Murky Depths, Crossed Genres (the magazine--not the publishing company), and all forthcoming anthologies from Library of Horror Press are dead. I'm sad in the case of Murky Depths (but glad to have "Shoes for the Journey" published before its demise--it was a beautiful mag) and Crossed Genres (which published my longish-short "Down There" earlier this year). The Library of Horror situation rankles a bit. I had two stories slated for future publication from LoH, one in Witchology and the other in Made You Flinch, Again (again?).

This--the frequent death of short story markets--more than anything, puts me off writing more shorts. Markets come and go--even after you've signed a contract. If I'm running my writing life as a business, I'm not sure it makes much sense.

But then again, I'm not sure anything I've done in my writing career makes much sense. I tend to follow my heart:


9 comments:

Barry Napier said...

I've been noticing this, too. With the exception of one single story, I have submitted only poetry to these sorts of markets over the past 6 months or so. In the e-book craze, everyone was too worried about how it would change the larger markets that no one saw how crippling it could be to small short story markets, I guess.

Mary Rajotte said...

I hear ya, Aaron. I too had a story accepted to a Library of Horror Antho and it's sad to see so many cancelled.

I had the same thoughts about short stories. I admit, I do not have as many publishing credits as you so I feel like I am still getting my feet wet in terms of that, but I had already planned to focus on longer works in 2012.

Having said that, I still love shorts and if anything, I will still write them and compile them into collections :)

The good thing is there are so many ways to read eBooks even if you don't own an eReader.

Katey said...

Yeah, I agree with you, Aaron: I'm not sure short fiction as a business makes sense, not unless we're working with mags that look at it as a business themselves. These publishers, they're all paying their authors, yeah, but they're not meant to produce a profit for the staff to live on, as a business would. So it doesn't get treated as such.

Which leads to a beautiful, creative mag, a worthwhile endeavor, but an unstable source of income/whatever.

I would prefer the former -- like you, with the following the heart. Which is obvious, I guess, since I've got one of those mags myself. We're up against some weird, weird stuff when it comes to the writing-as-career issue, though.

K.C. Shaw said...

ew, squicky picture! But yes, I agree with you. It seems weird that short as my own writing career has been so far, I've already seen a lot of markets start up and then close within a few years (or months). It's sad and it makes it difficult to know where to submit work, especially when some of the markets that have gone were big, well-paying ones that had been around for a long time.

Kristi DeMeester said...

It both terrifies and saddens me that just as I'm leaping back into the market it's begun to flounder in this way. What a shame for not only writers but readers of horror/speculative fiction.

James Everington said...

A shame... but I've noticed many periodicals are starting to appear as ebooks on Amazon too. Maybe it will provide a lifeline?

From my own perspective, in amid the glut of self-published short story collections out there now, it helps to be able to put in the description that some have been published in paying markets. Maybe as more, and more, and MORE stuff is thrown at the Amazon wall to see if it sticks, it will become important to have some kind of non-self published history, no matter how small the magazine...

Danielle Ferries said...

It's sad to see another short story publication disappear. I'd not yet had anything accepted by Murky Depths but they had been on my list of publications I wanted to appear in. Sad to see them go and more than a little frustrating that there isn't more interest in short stories.

Cate Gardner said...

It appears I missed the Crossed Genres announcement. :(

Mercedes said...

I love shorts and I'm writing more with my eye toward anthologies instead of short story markets. Although (plug plug) Shock Totem is still going strong, even as everything else dies around us. It's a little unnerving.

Aaron, I wanted to tell you that I saw Blood Lite II being sold at the World Fantasy Con dealers room! I took a shoddy picture with my camera phone, but I pointed you out to everybody within earshot. It was great to be there with such exceptional writers and to see your work there as well! Surreal. Kind of like when you're a kid and you're dreaming. :)