This fall, Xchyler is releasing their new paranormal anthology, the theme of which is ‘Mr.& Mrs. Myth’ and I have a short story titled ‘Charon’s Obol’ in it.
I’m delighted because I had a blast last year being a part of ‘Shades and Shadows’. If you are a writer, especially one still trying to ‘make their mark’, I recommend keeping an eye on Xchyler. They really know how to put together an anthology, and while professional, are great fun to work with. They also do more than just paranormal, so that opens it up enough that maybe you can find your ‘In’.
My short story, as no one who reads this blog will be surprised to find out, is in the White Dragon Black series. But I’m having to do rewrites (actually more additions than rewrites) on the beginning. I failed to introduce Jonathan Alvey quite as well as my publisher would like, for new readers to the series. A valid point, so I started working on that.
Working on that consisted of running the opening scene over, and over, in my head while I did other things – like search for review blogs that might be willing to review Tomorrow Wendell. Roughly three hours of checking out blog, after blog, and emailing all those that I think the reviewer could honestly be interested in my work.
Three weeks I’ve been looking at review blogs: averaging thirty or more blogs visited, ten or more emails sent out, and two requests received every day. I consider that a good return.
So Saturday, once I had finished my afternoon of blog searching, I opened up ‘Charon’s Obol’ and allowed the little bits and pieces that my brain had percolated from my subconscious into forebrain, out onto the screen. It’s probably not quite there yet – I sent it to my editor to get some feed back, some direction – and I expect it will come back with exactly that.
I expect this because the editors at Xchyler are very much, all about making the writing the strongest it can be while still making it all the writer’s voice, words, and creativity. As a writer, I not only appreciate that respect, but I appreciate the challenge it represents as well.
I want this story to be strong. Of course I do… it’s mine. But also, it is the third published in the series, a series I”m trying to build and secure in the ‘real’ world. A series, I want to draw readers into and have them fall in love with. And yes – I want it to be strong, because the reviewers I’m trying so hard to the attention of, they will start getting those reviews out just a bit ahead of the release of the Anthology, they will continue to come out around the release of the anthology, and still be coming just a little after.
It’s good marketing. I had nothing to do with it. I got in the anthology on writing merit, not marketing (Xchyler anthology submissions are anonymous and graded on many points to find the strongest stories) but that doesn’t mean I”m not going to take advantage of any marketing edge I can.
I’m a brand new writer that wants to be around a decade from now – darn tooting, I’m going to do what I can to make sure that’s true. And the best way to do that – get this rewrite done right.