In September, I took the (scary!) step of entering my name for the Ilkley Literature Festival open mike competition that ends the festival. October, then, found me reading a short story in front of around 40 people. It was an experience that had me literally shaking – despite standing on my feet all day talking in front of people, nothing scares me like seeing people read my own creative work…except reading it to them. Despite my nerves, however, I was pleased to be Highly Commended by the judges – who said that it as brave to atempt a short story in three minutes!
So, the next phase of my attempt to turn this writing love into something more than a private hobby is to experiment with the world of e-publishing.
There’s a few reasons I’ve decided to give this a go. I have several short stories on my hard-drive that I feel are well-written and powerful. I could try to submit them to a series of competitions or to a publisher as a collection. Short story collections are, though, difficult to place and sell when you don’t have a track record of novels behind you. Competitions are often more focused and I do intend to do something more with that – but what about those stories that are entered and don’t win? It doesn’t necessarily mean that they aren’t valuable or worthwhile – although it can mean that! – it means they didn’t suit what the judges wanted on that occasion. I also think that e-publishing’s an exciting avenue to try and experimenting with it via short stories will be an interesting thing to do – and part of what I want to do with this is to try new things, new ways of writing and having people read what I write.
So, my next post will be a detailed look at how I’ve gone about exploring this!