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Friday, June 05, 2020

Valerie Allen Shares Path to Short Story Success

Who Loves Short Shorts?

by Valerie Allen, 

If you like to read and/or write short stories welcome to the “McQuick” world of modern times. In today's world we tend to want all things, our way, ten minutes ago! Reading an interesting story used to be a long and leisurely break from the hustle and bustle of daily demands or an interesting escape from the routine and mundane events of everyday living.

Now we can listen to books as we multitask. We can also sneak away for a few minutes to read a short story. Stories can be humorous or poignant. Tales can be under 1000 words, better known as flash fiction, or they can be the more typical short story of 1000 to 5000 words.

It takes a special skill to create interesting characters, define a place, develop a plot, and tell a good story in only a few words. If you've dabbled with writing the short story and feel you have a talent for it, the big question is how and where to connect with readers.

Over the course time, with many trial and error attempts, I have found these marketing strategies to be most successful.

1. Research the many magazines, newspapers, and online venues seeking short stories to attract hurried readers or fill in small spaces in their publications. Submit to all of them within their guidelines. Eventually you will strike gold! Narrtive Magazine, Electric Literature, One Story, Joyland Magazine, The First Line, Crazyhorse, Ploughshares, The Atlantic, and others.

2. Publish your single short story on Amazon.com via KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) as an ebook. I charge .99 cents and earn a 35% royalty. This is not a get rich quick opportunity but you will sell in quantity and pick up many readers. I have been able to create a strong following with this idea. You can see my books and short stories at Amazon.com/author/valerieallen

3. Every week have an online post featuring one of your short stories. Use the title, blurb, and cover. Send this out to your friends, fans, and followers. Readers will look forward to seeing your notices. You will get your name and story titles out on the electronic highway and build your brand as a writer of short stories. People will click to buy your story on Amazon.com and many will write a review. Here is an example of one of my recent posts: Here is your quick, short story weekend read: "The Garden of Love," Amazon.com/dp/B010W1D9FE “Life is good! Their boy is grown and married with kids of his own. He's got it together or does he? Why is he back? Why is he offering to help with the yard work?”

4. Find places to post online that are FREE. My motto is, It's FREE, it's for me! The benefit—you will find new readers. Granted you will not make money when you give away your work but you will build a following and your brand as a short story writer whose work people enjoy. One of the best online FREE places to post is StoryStar.com. I have posted 26 stories on this site and have had over 7000 views. The average number of views per story is 295 for my work. My most read short story, with nearly 1000 views, is Future Plans.You can find it FREE on StoryStar.com or you can buy it for .99 cents on Amazon.com/dp/B010TXRDQQ .

5. Create an anthology of your short stories and sell them as a book and/or ebook. You can also have them published in a large print edition and as an audio book. You can create a random collection and then make it into a series. I've done this with  'Tis Herself: Short Story Collection Volume One, and Volume Two, and VoluMan in Your Life.
me Three. You can also make a collection with a specific theme. See, Stories for the

6. I've also used my short stories to make mini books which I give out at book and author events. I use my document and divide the 81/2 x 11 page into four columns. I print it in landscape, front to back. I then fold it into a mini book with one short story and all my contact information. It's a FREE give away and who doesn't love FREE! Again, this brings me more readers and more exposure for my work.


Valerie Allen writes fiction, non-fiction, short stories, and children's books. She is the Director of Authors for Authors (AuthorsForAuthors.com) which hosts book and author events. You can find of her ideas in Write, Publish, Sell! Quick, Easy, Inexpensive Ideas for the Marketing Challenged, 2 nd Ed. at AmazonShe enjoys hearing from writers and invites you to contact her at VAllenWriter@gmail.com. Join her AuthorsforAuthors group on Facebook.

MORE ABOUT THE #SharingwithWriters BLOGGER

 Howard-Johnson is the multi award-wining author of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry. She is
also a marketing consultant, editor, and author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers including the multi award-winning The Frugal Book Promoter (http://bit.ly/FrugalBookPromoIII), now offered by Modern History Press in its third edition. Carolyn's latest is in the #HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers is How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically. Learn more on her Amazon profile page (http://bit.ly/CarolynsAmznProfile). Great Little Last Minute Editing Tips for Writers (http://bit.ly/Last-MinuteEditing) is one of her booklets--perfect for inexpensive gift giving--and, another booklet, The Great First Impression Book Proposal (http://bit.ly/BookProposalsII) helps writers who want to be traditionally published. The Frugal Editor (http://bit.ly/FrugalEditor), now in its second edition, is the winningest book in the series. Carolyn also has three frugal books for retailers including one she encourages authors to read because it will help them convince retailers to host their workshops, presentations, and signings. It is A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In-Store Promotions: How To Increase Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic Downturns with Thrifty Events and Sales Techniques (http://bit.ly/RetailersGuide). In addition to this blog, Carolyn helps writers extend the exposure of their favorite reviews at TheNewBookReview.blogspot.com. She also blogs at all things editing--grammar, formatting and more--at The Frugal, Smart, and Tuned-In Editor (http://TheFrugalEditor.blogspot.com)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing this information for all those short story lovers!


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