Friday Fun, Copyright & Bibliography

Saint PaulMy last post resulted in a pretty substantial impact. I’ll probably do another one or two on the same topic later, focusing around the technologies publishing companies can use to make their lives easier and marketing theories to help drive sales… maybe even one around public relations work or building a quality product. Likely in that order too.

I know that this knowledge is not as sexy as authors want to read, but this stuff is important for figuring out the bottlenecks. If anyone wants to write, they have to know the business.

Anyway, back to my more generic rantings.

While walking to the day job this morning, I finally had an idea for a story due in 20 days. Rather than devise something totally 100% new, it’s actually another tale set in the same universe in a story I innovated, soon to be released from a different publisher. I think press companies tend to enjoy linking stories like that, because they can redirect some sales from another title their way, thus cross-pollinating their readerships pools.

Frequently, writers coming from a fan fiction background get a little confused about this practice; fan fiction means you’re writing something that is not your original intellectual property, and unless it’s public domain or the creator gives selective rights (see Slender Man’s copyright status for an example, or Kindle Worlds) you need the permission of the owner to publish anything under their franchise. But if your creation is wholly original, it’s yours. You’re the owner. And you can take it to whichever and whatever publisher you want (who is then free to reject it.)

Digression: I just noticed The 100 is on Kindle Worlds list of properties. Now that’s something I might actually consider crafting a story for. The show is great and I need to read the original trilogy by Kass Morgan.

Anyway, this revelation leaves me with one story ready to write, two that need the synopses nailed down and one in need of inspiration. As much as I want to go home and tackle this queue to the ground, my day job calls and I have family/future family visiting this weekend.

One has to keep creating new work to grow the authorial resume. Typically, my bibliography only gets updated once a general agreement or contract has been signed. At which point, the awaited literature finds its place under the “Publications Coming Soon” section. There is more work brewing out there. But until I have at least a confirmation of acceptance, I never mention it specifically.

SadkoI picked up the idea of tracking my own bibliography from Josh Reynolds, a professional author I respect. I did an interview with him sometime back for the Bolthole, when he pointed to his own scoreboard. It’s interesting to see the growth. In 2003, he published three short stories. Same in 2004, but in ’05 and ’06, he doubled that. Afterwards, ’07 was an accomplished year for him, with over a dozen short stories and his first listed novel. He’s been a busy guy ever since.

Some struggling writers might feel down after seeing a resume like that. But if you’re one of them, ask yourself, “Have I been at it for 12 years?”

I bet the answer is no. I might want to reorganize my bibliography by release dates myself to keep tabs on my record.

However, that reminds me. This blog. The talk about starting my own publisher and/or my own site has made me consider whether or not to keep it. Originally I was going to polish and transform it into a more official looking site, but its roots as a fan blog kept bothering me. Yet He2etic’s Hysterical Horoscope has been around for four years and has over 300 blog posts. That’s a long time to just walk away from.

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