Sounds very interesting John! What was your inspiration? How well do you expect an anthology to do in today's market?
Thanks for your kind words about Quantum Zoo
! I know all of us are very
excited for its pending release.
Jessica and I got to know each other through an online writing group. I think both of us admired the work of the other (at least I HOPE that's the case on Jessica's end
), and we've been bouncing ideas off of one another w/r/t increasing the visibility of like-minded indie authors for a while now.
One of those ideas was for an anthology, but with a twist: all of the proceeds up to a certain threshold will be spent on testing out new marketing ideas. We know there's a lot of spotty information out there about what works and what doesn't for marketing for indie authors, outside of the obvious "write more books" that always seems to be the key.
By collecting a dozen or so top-notch stories into a single anthology, we thought we could "cross-pollinate" everyone else's audiences. Additionally, we could try a bunch
of different marketing strategies, and see what works and what doesn't, and report back to the group (and the larger indie community) accordingly.
So we just decided to go for it! The inspiration for the "Zoo" prompt came through several brainstorming sessions; we wanted a prompt that would be fun to write about, had a broad range of applications, and would work equally well for both sci-fi and fantasy authors.
We got a mention on The Passive Voice, and were overwhelmed by the resulting submissions, both in quantity and quality! In the end, we decided on a dozen of the very best ones (including John's--I can see why his story scared his wife!), and have spent the past few months collaborating with the authors on revisions and polishing the stories up, in addition to the really
fun stuff like drawing up contracts and coming up with a marketing plan.
As for how well we think the anthology will do, I think we're both realistic and optimistic. These stories speak for themselves--they're all fantastic. I'm proud to have my story listed alongside every other one in the anthology. We're initially going to spread the word via social media (to our own audiences), as well as guest posts and reviews where we can get them. Some folks are going to conferences and will be spreading the word there. Once we've started to pool each others' audiences, then we can start the fun stuff--playing around with paid ads, viral marketing, etc.
Which leads me to another point: if there's any kind of paid advertising or marketing concepts that you think would take some cash to get off the ground, but you haven't wanted to try for whatever reason as of yet, we'd be happy to test them and let you know what works and what doesn't. Quantum Zoo
is all about pooling stuff: talents, audiences, resources, and (yes) knowledge. We'd be remiss if we didn't give back to the community that's given us all so much already!
Whew--that's a lot! Needless to say, Jessica and I (and everyone else) are extremely excited for the release of the anthology! Check out the links John posted above for more info, and I'm happy to drop by and answer any questions as they arise. Thanks again!