Sows’ ears and Silk Purses

New visitors to my garden; Long tailed tits
New visitors to my garden; Long tailed tits

Yesterday as I picked up another load of fallen apples before mowing the lawn I reflected on the passing year. I’ve be busy these last few weeks working on another short story for a writing competition. At the beginning of the year, I had planned to enter one competition a month and to work on my novel too.

What is it they say about all the best laid plans 🙂

My novel has taken the back seat for quite a few months now. :-(Anyway, I’ve now made a start on my next short story which I hope will be suitable for a magazine. I’m driven by this need to prove to myself, that I can make some money from my writing.

On Tuesday, I received a letter from a publisher about a short story I had published by them after I was an overall winner in their competition. As their winner I won a publishing deal… I know, it sounds exciting, but it wasn’t what I was expecting either. They published my winning short story as an eBook. As the story was short it couldn’t even be classed as a novelette. Anyway, they had sent me my royalty statement of a few pence which won’t be come a cheque until it reaches the grand total of five pounds.
I understand the problem quite clearly why readers aren’t buy my eBook, simply because it isn’t a book though my publisher tells me it’s all about the marketing.
I know writers shouldn’t write in clichés, but somehow sow’s ears and silk purses came to mind on reading their letter as they were sure I could increase my sales, but somehow I don’t think reader want to spend money on a stand alone short which can be read in ten minutes when they can buy a novel for a little more money and enjoy a longer read. I’ve had great feedback & reviews for my story and I’m proud of it, but I’m realistic and know that it wont make my fame or fortune.

Yes, I know it should be writing for the art of storytelling, or even for the love of writing, but deep down inside I feel that if someone I don’t know is willing pay for your hard work then somehow this validates me as a writer, but I don’t want to short changes anyone by passing off a short story as a book.
Of course, if it had my novel the publisher had been talking about, then I would be dancing round the room in excitement that they were so willing to work hard to sell my eBook.

So as this publisher isn’t willing to even look at a novel by me, I’m working on getting my name out there and building my career slowly my way.  I know writing a great a novel and getting it ready to send off to publishers and agents takes time, and loads more hard work too. You can’t rush a novel, which is why short stories are a great way to get your work out there. This is why I enjoy entering competitions.

Next month, I shall have to start thinking about my Goth outfit for the Festival in Whitby, North Yorkshire. I’m going for the black and white theme.

Best Wishes, & Happy Writing,

Paula R C

5 thoughts on “Sows’ ears and Silk Purses

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  1. Getting published like that gives you a publishing credit and the more you have the more likely you’ll grab the attention of that publisher you want. At least that’s what I’m hoping (o;

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    1. I know, Flighty, but now I have a cat which has adopted my husband and I, I keep find little headless corpses on my lawn, and sadly one was a long-tailed tit. 😦 I have no idea how she caught it.

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    1. I am Keith and entering competition too. 🙂 Have you got any more stories coming up in People’s Friends or others?

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