Hi to all my loyal readers and subscribers to the website!
Earlier this year I was putting together an anthology project to be called And the Hugo Goes To …. The idea was to collect all my stories that were nominated for the Hugo Award. Now, I have had a lot of nominations in my career, and have won three times. Putting them all together would make up a fairly healthy volume.
So I started writing introductions for each story, and soon got enthused about the whole thing. It was shaping up like the intros to The John Varley Reader, which many people have told me were amusing, interesting, or at least worth reading.
It turned out that I was the only person who thought this was a good idea. Oh, well. Then I got the news that the rights to several of my books have been reverted to me, something that is not usually done. Extremely good news. That means I can sell them again, and have done so. More about that in a later post.
Except that fact that one of the books to be published again was The John Varley Reader, which contained most of the stories. It made no sense to put that book and the new one in print. So the Hugo book was dead.
But not quite. I still had fun writing the intros, and I would hate to see them go into the trunk, never to be seen. So I am going to experiment.
Some writers, such as Cory Doctorow, have put their work out there on the WWW for anyone to read, at no cost to the reader … except that Cory asked readers to pay what they thought the story was worth. He claims to have had overwhelmingly good response, at least as good as if he had published them in the traditional way.
I thought about putting the intros for sale on Kindle. I don’t know precisely how that works, but I do know Amazon takes a pretty damn big bite out of the original, self-published books that they sell. Plus, I really hate the idea of putting any money into Jeff Bezos’s pocket. He already has $153,720,000,000, give or take a few cents. He really doesn’t need any more. (I’m missing the third season of The Marvelous Mrs. Maizel right now because I really don’t want to subscribe to Amazon Prime.)
BTW, publishing the traditional way, by selling to a firm like my old publisher, Penguin Random House, you also make a lot more money for them than you do for yourself. Typically royalties are 15% of cover price, 20% tops. So I am going to go the Doctorow route. You can read all the intros at the link right HERE.
Then, should you decide they are worth something, you can go to that little yellow button on the Welcome box at the home page, the one that says DONATE. You can’t miss it. That will take you to PayPal, where you can decide what you want to pay. I don’t know what to suggest. $5? $10? $2? More, less? It’s entirely up to you.
And should you want to read them for free, or if you don’t think they are worth anything, that’s cool, too. We can get along eating dog food for another year.
Kidding, kidding. Really, do whatever you want. You have my blessing.
January 2, 2020