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Old 12-21-2012, 06:31 AM   #26
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I'm not on FB anymore. I got rid of it a while ago. However, I was able to chat with somebody earlier, but soon after we began loosing power every few minutes. That played havoc with my computer and I had to step away for a few hours.
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Old 12-21-2012, 03:43 PM   #27
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Old 12-21-2012, 04:10 PM   #28
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You guys have been busy already, I see.

1. I like the idea of print, but offset is rather expensive. Most of the POD's I have picked up have been fine, if a little bit meh - nothing wrong with them, but nothing which gets me really excited. I would say to go with an ebook first, then (if things go well enough) to at least consider a short print run. I want something in my hands more than I need another file clogging up my computer - and I already have upwards of a hundred books in to read which I have downloaded.

2. If FB is not an option, then everyone can think about chat. Mibbit is my client of choice as it isn't ugly, and is (generally) able to hold a connection when things are going wrong here. My connection is abysmal at the best of times.

3. I like themes as much as anyone, but a loose theme is better than a tight one - if people want to diverge off on a tangent, then that should be at least considered. Also, from knowledge of a few of the things I have participated in previously, the way people approach a concept can be quite a bit wider than anyone expects, so a degree of latitude to tone and length should be in place - it may seem strange to include gothic, splatter and mundane in one collection, but readers have had this range in pro titles over the years (check out the Peter Haining collections for an idea of the variety you can get away with).

4. It is a bit early to have this conversation, but can someone give a hint at the complete length of the project so we know how much room we have to fill? It is all very well asking for images, poems, whatever to fill out the antho, but if just a couple of the shorts run long, then we get into problems if we have to put this in paperback. Also, are the contents going to be B&W or color (which will affect cost as well), and what is the feeling about full-bleed? Printing to the edge of the paper is another problem which can add cost and time...

5. Is tying together a few of the stories with references to other shorts in the antho, and playing with meta concepts, something which is going to annoy people, or are you cool with other writers playing with your toys?

Yes, I have been thinking about this. A lot.

Oh, and while I am thinking about things, because I don't have enough to do from day to day (feel the sarcasm bleeding from my fingertips), are we doing this as a one-off, or are people excited about this enough to make it a yearly outing? If you guys want to make it something more ongoing in nature, it might be a good idea to get in touch (politely) with people on the board who have experience of doing ongoing anthologies.
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Old 12-21-2012, 08:14 PM   #29
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Ooo... an anual anthology!

Though I really like the idea of an annual, a tiny voice says to see how this pans out before commiting to an even bigger project.

But I really love that idea...
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Old 12-21-2012, 08:32 PM   #30
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BTW, is this JUST for the Hounds, or is it open to all AWers? If the latter, should we have some sort of announcement in AW Contests and Projects Room?
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:30 PM   #31
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Thus far, we've been discussing this being open to all AW'ers. Once we get a few more details hammered out, there will be a post in the Contest Forum.

As for now, we probably need to come up with a Guidelines Page, as a next step.

As for chat, AW already has a link to starchat and it's easy to add a private room.
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:36 PM   #32
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You guys have been busy already, I see.

1. I like the idea of print, but offset is rather expensive. Most of the POD's I have picked up have been fine, if a little bit meh - nothing wrong with them, but nothing which gets me really excited. I would say to go with an ebook first, then (if things go well enough) to at least consider a short print run. I want something in my hands more than I need another file clogging up my computer - and I already have upwards of a hundred books in to read which I have downloaded.

The most common worry about print is cost. I'm working on some ideas to get few dollars in the project so we can have some printed books up front. Personally, I figure printed books are good for marketing.

2. If FB is not an option, then everyone can think about chat. Mibbit is my client of choice as it isn't ugly, and is (generally) able to hold a connection when things are going wrong here. My connection is abysmal at the best of times.

AW Chat is perfect. Plus, I can access it through Chatzilla and log the convo so everybody else can read what we're talking about. It saves time.


3. I like themes as much as anyone, but a loose theme is better than a tight one - if people want to diverge off on a tangent, then that should be at least considered. Also, from knowledge of a few of the things I have participated in previously, the way people approach a concept can be quite a bit wider than anyone expects, so a degree of latitude to tone and length should be in place - it may seem strange to include gothic, splatter and mundane in one collection, but readers have had this range in pro titles over the years (check out the Peter Haining collections for an idea of the variety you can get away with).

I would ask that everybody have a look at the guidelines of anthos they like and see how they handle the various aspects of dealing with a theme. That's what I'm doing right now. This will help us decide how we want to handle this. Hopefully, we'll have a guidelines page we can all agree upon.

4. It is a bit early to have this conversation, but can someone give a hint at the complete length of the project so we know how much room we have to fill? It is all very well asking for images, poems, whatever to fill out the antho, but if just a couple of the shorts run long, then we get into problems if we have to put this in paperback. Also, are the contents going to be B&W or color (which will affect cost as well), and what is the feeling about full-bleed? Printing to the edge of the paper is another problem which can add cost and time...

Not sure yet about this.



5. Is tying together a few of the stories with references to other shorts in the antho, and playing with meta concepts, something which is going to annoy people, or are you cool with other writers playing with your toys?

Interesting question. I'm not sure. Let's see what others have to say.




Oh, and while I am thinking about things, because I don't have enough to do from day to day (feel the sarcasm bleeding from my fingertips), are we doing this as a one-off, or are people excited about this enough to make it a yearly outing? If you guys want to make it something more ongoing in nature, it might be a good idea to get in touch (politely) with people on the board who have experience of doing ongoing anthologies.
Let's get this one done and see how it goes.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:20 AM   #33
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First, I think an antho is a great idea.

I think we'll have to do this on our own. However, we have an extremely marketable product set to come out at the best time. If the marketing is right, we should be able to overcome a lot of obstacles.



As a reader, I like the flow found in a themed collection - when it's done well. Themed collections I've read that have not been done so well have been borderline redundant in their plots/characters - someting we'll have to find a way to avoid.

Yeah, this was brought up by Soapy as well. We'll have to figure out a way to avoid a dozen subs with the same plot twists, etc. I've got a couple of ideas to sort of help folks gauge what direction others are headed towards.



Fantastic idea! Sketches between the selections or on the title page of each selection would be neat.

We've got some good artists floating around here. I think many of them would do well with a theme in the horror genre.



Eight months - do-able.

Once we get a few of the foundation issues set, like guidelines, size, etc. we'll be able to set a schedule that will allow us to achieve this goal. I'm terrified of a frantic, last-minute dash to the finish.

Questions:

1) How involved do we want to be with each other's work - like editing/critting involved?

Yeah, this is a good one. Beta reading the competition might be a problem for some. But, I'm sure we all could find beta readers not involved with this project.


B) Do we want writers to submit stories to SYW under an antho heading? I plan on asking a mod, once we have the foundations settled a bit, if we could get a sub-forum on SYW were ID's were stripped off and folks could vote. If we go that route. If not, then we could keep that forum only with a small number of people, who are on the committee, password protected. That's another issue we'll have to discuss and come to consensus about. Which way do you feel is best?


C) Do we want writers to independently be responsible for their own editing? I would say Yes, because that's how it is with other publications. If it needs to be cleaned up, we can always ask the writer to do it before the final go-ahead. But the expectation needs to be that we want it polished.

2) Re: avoiding redundency - Pesonally, I'd rather know at the rough draft stage whether or not I've landed on a smilar tract as someone else in the antho but do we really want to look at a slew of roughs? I'd hate to be told/have to tell somebody that all the work they put into making their final copy shine was for naught, that their work and another writer's ring a bell too similar to be in the same compilation.

My idea is to have a poll with all sorts of plot-tupes related to this project. I.E., haunted food, food that really stays, mutated by food, etc. This should take a lot of the guessing out. I hope. Or, you could just say it in a forum someplace. "I'm subbing a short story about _____" and see who pipes up.



Or it could be that the anthos I've read with selections similar enough to make me double check the authors/titles were just bad examples - which could be, the ones I'm thinking of were in small presses, since closed.

Food is a pretty broad theme though, so it's probably nothing to really worry about.

Food is broad AND marketable. Between the growing, making, eating, digesting and wasting, there's a lot that can happen.


3) Story length - flash, short, novella? Any and all of the above?

We've been shooting this around the forum and in chat. Flash and short sounds best. I vote for under 5K words, but some feel under 4K. What do you feel is best? As for novellas....well, we might consider allowing one, depending on space, etc. That would be a tough call, though.

That's all the cobwebs have caught so far. I'll give it some more thought though.
We'll fix it.

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Old 12-22-2012, 07:16 PM   #34
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Does that link work for anyone else? Or is it just me that it won't open for?
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:14 PM   #35
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Does that link work for anyone else? Or is it just me that it won't open for?
I'll figure this all out eventually. In the mean time, I get off work at 8pm CST and I'm off Sunday. I realize that's a super-busy day for most but if somebody wants to hook up in chat, lemme know and I'll work it into the schedule.
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:31 PM   #36
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I'll figure this all out eventually. In the mean time, I get off work at 8pm CST and I'm off Sunday. I realize that's a super-busy day for most but if somebody wants to hook up in chat, lemme know and I'll work it into the schedule.
Most likely I won't be there. But I honestly never know when my schedule will open for stuff.

But if others get together, please send me a copy of the log so I can see what I missed.
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Old 12-23-2012, 04:32 AM   #37
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I'm willing to help some in contributing ideas / oversight. A few things I'm noticing from reading this thread so far.

Quote:
4. It is a bit early to have this conversation, but can someone give a hint at the complete length of the project so we know how much room we have to fill? It is all very well asking for images, poems, whatever to fill out the antho, but if just a couple of the shorts run long, then we get into problems if we have to put this in paperback. Also, are the contents going to be B&W or color (which will affect cost as well), and what is the feeling about full-bleed? Printing to the edge of the paper is another problem which can add cost and time...
I don't think it's too early to talk about any of this. Print publishing a professional quality product is quite the undertaking. The last thing you'd want is for people to put in the effort of writing, editing and assembling contributions for this anthology, only to run into issues later on with the actual book itself. One of the first things the committee might want to look into is the overall budget for this project. Print might seem like a great idea, but it won't be known if it's practical until some numbers get crunched, I'd wager.

The initial meeting among the decision-makers involved should really nail down the full scope of the anthology, including a complete schedule of everything that needs to be accomplished prior to the Sept. 1st pub date. A list of every critical "go live" decision should be compiled.
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Old 12-23-2012, 05:18 AM   #38
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Have you guys looked at the thread for Absolute Visions? There's a lot of talk about how things were set up, what the requirements and expectations were, what the payment for author and artist was, etc. etc.

The Great Absolute Write Spec Fiction Anthology!

At least it would give you guys some guidelines as to how they did it. I'm sure Mac (editor) and Pthom (art director) would be open to discussing details with you.

I believe they went with a POD press for their print copies. I don't know what company they went with, but they put out a quality project (a copy lasted multiple readings with a spine-cracking friend of mine--better than some MMP boos do) and I generally get my order from amazon in about 3 days.

IIRC, they also got over 200 submissions--so if you don't have the staff to go through that many, remember to announce a limit.

Have fun with this.
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Old 12-23-2012, 07:59 PM   #39
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I'd make sure that you talked to poetinahat, who has done several poetry anthologies. Mac funded the cost of ISBNs, and fees for writers and artists, and the contributors' copies for Absolute Visions. I believe it cost around 2500.00. The copies purchased haven't come anywhere near that total. She used Create Space for the printed copies, and purchased copies for contributors.

Here are the rough stages you need to go through:

1. Decide roughly how many words your anthology will have, and what kind of stories/poems it will have, will it be illustrated, etc. I'd be cautious about including illustrations unless you have someone thoroughly conversant with preparing illustrations for digital and print venues.
2. Decide a point person for contact from participants, and a schedule for submission ending, reading ending/announcement of participants, editing period, file production, galleys/QA, final file deadline, publication date, PR. You need to know what rights you'll be asking for and for how long.
3. Decide on a selection process; I'd suggest an editorial committee, 3 to 7 people who are not subbing but know and like the genres/formats and who are anonymous.
4. Someone collects and tracks submissions, copies the files and removes names from them, and makes them available to selection board.
5. Final selection having been made, and participants notified, someone writes editorial notes. This should be a single person, with editorial skills. You need to have a fairly standard and legal and fair contract; I'd ask Mac about this.
6. Final edited files submitted to the editor. Proofing and basic formatting takes place (i.e. italics, bold, proper and standardized punctuation and spelling, etc.; notes on proofed hard copy made about any special formatting typesetting needs for individual pieces). This is NOT editing; no substantial changes should be made, formatting and proofing/typesetting only.
7. Typesetter and / or book designer and editor confer about design. Typesetter produces file(s). QA on those files, including a hardcopy pass, submitting to services, and having volunteers check the ebooks on various devices.
8. Someone obtains ISBNs, and submits final files to services (Amazon Create Space, etc.). Final QA; someone obtains /buys a copy of each format book and checks it carefully.
9. Production of marketing collaterals, etc.
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Old 12-23-2012, 08:50 PM   #40
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I'm in, however you need me.
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I don't know, mighty Tigress. You've presented some fine alternatives, but Boston and Rob are the little-black-dresses of blame. You know. Classics.
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Old 12-23-2012, 10:38 PM   #41
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Has anyone mentioned going through CreateSpace for print? I put the text for Hatchings through there and it sailed right through (I flubbed the cover by not following directions though and providing sufficient border space). I've formatted for Amazon, Nook, Smashwords and CreateSpace so I can help there.
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Old 12-23-2012, 10:53 PM   #42
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Has anyone mentioned going through CreateSpace for print? I put the text for Hatchings through there and it sailed right through (I flubbed the cover by not following directions though and providing sufficient border space). I've formatted for Amazon, Nook, Smashwords and CreateSpace so I can help there.
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I'm in, however you need me.
Sweet!

I have some ideas about funding but I need to ask MacAllister about them first. I won't want to break an AW rules.
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Old 12-23-2012, 11:39 PM   #43
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Dot the 'i's cross the 't's.
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Old 12-23-2012, 11:41 PM   #44
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Dot the 'i's cross the 't's.

Yup. It's important, I think, that this be proper in many ways. This is going to be the first big exposure for a number of writers and artists, I hope. It has to look good and not look like some redneck in Wisconsin got drunk during a snowstorm and came up with a "great idea". For the record, no beer was involved--so far, anyways.
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Old 12-24-2012, 12:35 AM   #45
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I've been lurking this thread the past couple days and while I may have no publishing experience a few things popped into my mind.

Are you going to only accept AWer submissions? Is the process going to be selective, or more inclusive? Are you going to select as you go or have all submissions ten a reading period?

Someone mentioned they would like to know if there story is on track. Maybe if submissions were rolling you could post exceptions and a one sentence teaser of te story.
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Old 12-24-2012, 01:06 AM   #46
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I've been lurking this thread the past couple days and while I may have no publishing experience a few things popped into my mind.

Are you going to only accept AWer submissions? Is the process going to be selective, or more inclusive? Are you going to select as you go or have all submissions ten a reading period?

As long as you have an active account on AW, like yourself, then you are an AW member.

Someone mentioned they would like to know if there story is on track. Maybe if submissions were rolling you could post exceptions and a one sentence teaser of te story.
We've been talking about various ways to address this. I'm sure we'll figure something out. Perhaps a poll to let folks know the track they are on. People vote and then see how they're doing in relation to others.
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Old 12-24-2012, 01:10 AM   #47
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We've been talking about various ways to address this. I'm sure we'll figure something out. Perhaps a poll to let folks know the track they are on. People vote and then see how they're doing in relation to others.
I'm not sure that's wise. You might want to talk to both Mac and poetinahat about their experiences. Like sooner rather than later.
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Old 12-24-2012, 02:41 AM   #48
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Yeah, what Medievalist said, Ted. No "management by poll" sort of thing ever works out well. Management by committee does, barely, but do not manage by poll. You're just a politician then.

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Old 12-24-2012, 03:36 AM   #49
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I'm not sure that's wise. You might want to talk to both Mac and poetinahat about their experiences. Like sooner rather than later.
I totally misunderstood the question. I'm sorry.

You guys are right. No, this wouldn't work.

My bad.

I was thinking something totally different.
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Old 12-24-2012, 03:40 AM   #50
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Someone mentioned they would like to know if there story is on track. Maybe if submissions were rolling you could post exceptions and a one sentence teaser of te story.
One thing that I think worked well was that Mac let people know their stories were still being considered after an initial reading pass.

There were over 300 stories subbed for the Absolute Visions anthology. When you're reading for an anthology you have not only the usual "is this a publishable story" question, you have the issue of stories that will work together as an anthology, which in some respects is a bit like assembling a playlist.

The stories need to work together, and then they need to be in a particular order.
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