Monday, October 15, 2007
Markets of the Dead
Madness. Madness, I tell you.
This was a quiet convention, as conventions go. I went last year to Conclave in Romulus and I would wager there was a sizable drop in attendance this year. I'm not sure why, although I can tell you it took them forever to get the programming together, and once together, the number of panels and presentations from last year were down considerably, with no focus or thread seeming to hold the convention together.
Still, it was fun to drag people in for refreshments while hawking the official release of "High Seas Cthulhu." And magically, I even got to sign a few books. I liked doing that so much, I might just start hanging out in libraries and scribbling in the flyleafs, maybe even forging names as I go along, leaving behind a trail of signatures from Sinclair Lewis to John Steinbeck. Of course, no one seems to take these books out any longer, so my wit may go unappreciated for years.
What's next? I am still pounding away at a novel revision and working on short stories to hawk to an ever shrinking market. Little by little the number of anthologies and magazines are vanishing, stepping off into the dismal clouds of yesteryear.
Years ago, when magazines seemed aplenty, and I'm talking about the forties, fifties, and sixties many writers were publishing their work in mimeographed anthologies and collections of fan fiction. Of course why mimeograph when we have the internet?
I'm working on a piece of fiction now, which should be done by Thursday, hopefully. When this is finished (it's called 'Dead Memories', a better moniker than its working title of 'Zombie Love'), I'll send it out snail mail to the handful of magazines still printing and paying something close to five cents a word. When they reject it, it's off to the five to fifteen dollar a story internet publications. And if they won't print it, why...then it's the freebies.
Writing may be all about the publishing, but when no one is publishing or buying, what's a writer to do?