Quaraun Novel Update: Starting in 2014, in preparation for the 40th Anniversary of The Twighlight Manor Series (September 23, 1978/2018), all 2,000+ short stories are being compiled into chronological order, to be re-released as a series of 130 novels. All the original short stories are being republished both here on EelKat.com and on Amazon. In the novels, each short story now stands as a "chapter" in the novels. New scenes are being added to connect the short stories together into novel format.

Why Not  Short Stories? Why Novels?

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Why Not  Short Stories? Why Novels?

Why Not  Short Stories? Why Novels?

I LOVE short stories. I write way more short stories then novels, and even though I'm a published novelist, I'm more known for my short stories. Probably because most of my novels were self-pubbed, while a bunch of my short stories were pubbed in magazines over the years. Since 1978 I've published over 2,000 short stories. At the height of my career (several years ago) I was publishing a short story every week. (Sadly those days are gone, largely because hundreds of literary mags went out of business in 1990s and it's not as easy to publish short stories today, as it was back in the 1980s when I was doing it as a full time career.)

I switched to novels when it became harder to find places to publish short stories, because, while mags are still out there, most of the ones today pay you $5 to $10 per story, when back in the 1980s we used to get paid $200 to $500 per story. Since the big shutdown of literary mags in the 1990s, it's become very difficult to earn a full time income with short stories.

40 years ago, publishing a short story a week was going to bring in at least $10,000 ($200 x 52), now today, you'll be lucky if it brings in $200 ($5 x 52). I think that's why you see the shift in focus with a lot of writers focusing on novels now instead of short stories. A lot of people are looking to pay the bills, so they gotta write what sells, right?

Interestingly, my novels are not actually novels, but rather me taking the 2,000 previously published short stories and writing "connecting scenes" to pull them together into a set of 130+ novels.

>>**Try writing a short story in two days and see if any magazine will publish it.**

It takes me on average 8 hours to write and edit a 5,000 word short story. There have been times when I write, edit, and published 4 stories in a single week. I don't recommend that as a weekly schedule, but it certainly is doable. 

It depends on your skill, the story, the magazine in question, and how many fans you have. Magazines will publish an author who they can guarantee will sell issues, over a new name with a better story. 

I have 7,000 die hard fans who buy EVERYTHING I write and 3 million more who swoop in here and there, so my name on the cover, regardless of the story, guarantee they'll sell 7,000 copies of that issue and could reach over a million copies. A lot of magazines struggle to sell even a 1,000 copies per issue. Believe me, once you become one of the top names in the industry, you can publish ANYTHING.

When I publish a new story on my website, it'll get 25,000+ views a month (which I'm doing right now at a rate of 3 to 4 new short stories a week). 

A lot of small magazines drop everything to rush a big name to press without even reading the story before accepting it. There's that to consider.

I'm a big enough name that Hugh Howey invited me to write a book with him... 2 years BEFORE he wrote Wool and became a household name. (See book link below...)

But I started writing in the 1970s when short stories were king. I'm not sure a short story writer today could follow in my footsteps and gain the sort of fame I did. So yeah, starting out, you'll find it difficult to get published, but that doesn't mean it'll stay that way. Stick with it and you can reach the top and have the literary mags eating out of your hand and begging for you to submit to them.

>>**Why is everyone jumping on spending years on one story?**

Uhm... no one doing this as a career is doing that. The average career author publishing 4 novels a year.

>>**Still, I stand by my thought, that more time spent in a story helps to engage the reader by more fully developing characters and ideas.**

I've published 2,000+ short stories... all are in one setting and follow one character and his friends/family... more than 14,000,000 (14 million) published words.

You want to see how developed this character is... here, have a 28,000 word character profile sheet: 

I defy you to find a series of novels with a more detailed story, idea, or character

I've literally spent 40 years fully developing him.

So, I was over on Reddit, you like I often am, and found this question. And answered it, like I do. However, the answer I initially gave was a simple generic answer. If you want to read my original answer unaltered, simply click on Reddit's embed feature links which Reddit provides for webmasters to be able to post their answers on their websites, while linking back to the original thread on Reddit (if you didn't know Reddit offered and encouraged the use of this feature, look for it in the "share" features underneath every post, comment, and reply on Reddit).

I am answering random questions today about world building, over on Reddit and decided to take my answers from there and expand upon them even further over here. So that's what this page is. Me rambling on about various aspects of world building techniques I use when writing the Quaraun series. The questions I am answering are embedded here. Clicking the link in the embedded question will take you to the original Reddit page where you can see the original answer along with other people's answers. If you wish to comment, you can do so on the Reddit page where a place to do so is provided.

In any case, as with all of my Reddit answers found on my site here, my original post on Reddit is much shorter then the article here.

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