Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Well . . . Does It?


Wild Wednesday with 
Ryssa Edwards

It’s Wild Wednesday, so I can talk about anything! Except cooking. Let’s not go there.

Today, I’d like to make my modest contribution to a question debated over the ages by scholars far and wide. Well, “scholars” might be a wee bit of a stretch.
What’s this big question, you’re wondering? Here goes: 

Does Size Matter?

No, not that kind of size. I’m talking short story versus novel.
With E-Publication becoming a bigger and bigger player in the reading mix, we can downsize our reading, even while we supersize that E-Reader, because seriously, is five hundred books in one virtual place really enough?

Today, even well-established writers like Stephen King are selling single shorts in electronic format at about three bucks a pop. Yes, I totally pre-ordered “Mile 81”. What does this mean to readers?

The answer is evolving as this market grows.This is how it’s been for me. I’ve loved Stephen King’s short stories since Night Shift. It used to be I’d have to wait years between short story collections because he couldn’t sell a book of short stories until he had eight or ten of them written. But now, I can get his newest short story almost as quick as he can sneak it past his editor. Ahhh. . I mean as quickly as his most wise editorial staff can add their valuable contribution. (Love you, Rie!)

Readers get a real bonus here because, you may not want to buy a whole book of short stories at $15.99, but what if you could spend three bucks at lunch time and get a quick read from an author you love? Or even better, discover a new writer to love?

I’ve found writers I would never have read thanks to E-Publication of short singles. Some publishers offer short stories for just $.99. For just over a buck (after taxes), I’m willing to check out a new writer. Tor.com has started a trend that I hope to see continue. They offer single shorts at $.99 by both unknown and very well-known writers. 

This works well for both writers and their fans. After a writer finishes a novel manuscript, they need a break, sort of down time to write something that’s just for fun. Most of the time, this turns out to be a short story. But then, they have to go back to the novel, because deadlines include the word “dead” for a reason! In the meantime, that one brilliant short story they wrote between drafts can languish for years before it’s got nine or ten brothers and sisters that can be sold with it as a ‘collection’. 

E-Publication is putting an end to this. Writers can get their short stories to market much faster, and fans can get a quick fix in between longer works.

So, does size matter? What do you think?

I’m Ryssa Edwards, and this has been Wild Wednesday.
You can find me here on the web:
Facebook: facebook.com/RyssaEdwards
My blog: http://www.ryssaedwards.net/blog/
Preview my upcoming release, Dreaming of a Kiss, here.
Warning! *Free Read Ahead* Check out “Spinner” my contribution to GoodReads’ Hot Summer Days.

6 comments:

Barbara Elsborg said...

Funnily enough I'd just mentioned this very thing on my blog - I'm very long winded and tend to write l...o...n...g novels - though I have a few shorts out there. I wrote one for that ARe contest and didn't think it worked so expanded it to 10,000 words and now its much better. I then wrote another one for the contest and sent it off and now want to write another short. I think they're a great way of unwinding after being steeped inside another world for several months but there is no doubt in my mind that writing a short story has its own problems. Nowhere near as easy as people might think!

Ryssa Edwards said...

Barbara. . . so true. Shorts are a great way to catch your breath between longer works. But paradoxically, they're much harder to write than longer pieces.

Thanks for stopping by!

books4me said...

As a reader, I really like short stories. If they are written well, they are just as good as novels and take less time to sit and read! As a busy mom, I have more time to sit and read a short story and get it done that to keep coming back to a novel and pick up where I left off! And they are easier on my pocketbook:)

books4me67 at ymail.com

Ranae Rose said...

I'll read scarily big fantasy tomes, stories I can read in an hour or less, and everything in between. I like how e-readers open up a whole range of shorter possibilities that weren't very accessable just a few years ago. Some stories natural lengths just aren't novel-sized, but they're still great reads.

I also write novellas and short stories, too (in addition to novels). Some are for sale while I publish others as free reads. As long as people are enjoying them, I'm not going to stop writing them. You're right - writing a short can be the perfect break between longer works. :)

Ryssa Edwards said...

Books . . . shorts are *way* easier on the budget, especially when you can buy one at a time! Thanks for stopping by

Ranae . . . I love the way E-Publication and E-apps have really broadened the range of what’s available to writers and their fans. Thanks for stopping by!

Ann Mayburn said...

I'm a huge Stephen king fan, thanks so much for the tip about his short stories. Skeleton Crew has always been my favorite. Sometimes you're just in the mood for a nibble.