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Discussion Starter #1
So, I have a backlist of short stories I'd like to release, but I'm wondering which way people would prefer to read them: individually or as a collection?  I know Amazon did the short story thing in the past and it obviously tanked, but I thought I'd solicit opinions out here and see how you all feel about them.

Thoughts, opinions, and perspectives all welcome!  :)

Thanks in advance!
 

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I have both short stories and short story collections on Kindle, and both are selling pretty well. Just price the individual short stories you sell at $1.00, and people will be able to buy them at $0.80. The ebook format lends itself well to short stories as long as you don't overprice them. Cannot promise huge sales either way, but I think you'll find that there are many who will appreciate both formats for the stories.

One suggestion. If you have a lot of short stories that you intend to sell individually, don't just throw them all up for sale at once. Spread out their releases and use them as a means to try to build an audience, give those who buy your stories something new to look forward to. Always leave them wanting more, and then later, give it to them.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Greg, appreciate the input!

I've only got about two ready to go right now.  I'd like to take a fresh pass over the others since they came out a while back and could probably use a healthy rewrite, lol...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hi Carol,

Just "published" PRISONER 392, so I expect that will be available around midnight EST (I hope!).  This is probably my most well-known short story since it appeared in the anthology From the Borderlands alongside people like Stephen King & Whitley Strieber.  It's my favorite, so I thought I'd lead off with that one.  Should be 80 cents when Amazon discounts it from a buck.

Thanks!
 

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I think releasing short stories one at a time is a better route than a collection, at least, until you build a dependable readership on Kindle.  Buying a collection, psychologically, is a bigger commitment in my opinion.  Please do keep us up to date on how it goes. 
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks Erik, I agree.  I like the idea of releasing them one at a time.  Plus, I'm a sucker for groovy cover art, so more thumbnails is always a nice thing, ha!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hi Carol,

Thanks for asking! I see the description hasn't been posted yet on Amazon (for the life of me, I can't understand why it takes longer for a simple description to show up, lol) so here's the scoop:

"They called it the slit.
And it was the only way Prisoner 392 could see the outside world.
Cut into the iron door of his cell, the six-inch wide by two-inch tall opening looked like a mouth, rusted burs jutting up and down from the unfinished edges like serrated teeth..."

One man's journey into a hellish prison where escape might just be truly impossible, but that doesn't stop him from trying...a short story by author Jon F. Merz originally published in Borderlands 5 & reprinted in From the Borderlands, it earned him an Honorable Mention in the 2004 edition of the Year's Best Fantasy & Horror edited by Ellen Datlow.

Here's the link if you want to pick it up and thereby reduce me to ecstatic tears of joy. ;)

 

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I think it's possible to do both. But a problem I've run into selling single short stories on Kindle is that sometimes readers mistakenly think they're getting a whole book since I do write novels too. I haven't yet found a really good solution for that problem; I've tried mentioning in the product description that it's a short story they're buying, but I'm not sure how well that's worked. I still offer my short stories for 80 cents each, but I also offer the entire novel-length collection for 2.78, so I'd suggest trying both ways. It's always good to give your readers as many choices as possible.



William Woodall
www.williamwoodall.org
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks Carol! Hope you dig it! I've also got another story up, THE BRANK OF KHOSADAM you might enjoy - a trip to recover a relic in Transylvania goes horribly awry...



William, thanks for the input. Once I get enough of the stories up, I may collect them into one ebook collection offer that as well for those who prefer it that way. Thanks!
 

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Jon,
Just read the product description for The Brank of Khosadam (golly did I spell it right?) and it sounds great, so I 1-clicked!
Thanks,
Carol
 

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This seems like a great way for a newly minted writer to get noticed. I have 40+ short stories ready to go, a few of which have won/placed in the handful of short story contests I've entered.

I have the first two installments of my 'A Matter of Time' series posted at my website, www.davidlerickson.com, about a self-exiled dot.com millionare and a time traveling history researcher.

I can also see where readers could expect to get a novel when what is offered is a short story, because so many novels are offered under a buck. My novel, Mankind's Worst Fear, is on Kindle and Smashwords for $.99. See what I mean?

So, am I to understand that Amazon/Kindle once offered a short story section?
 

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Jon,
I really enjoyed the Brank of Khosadam.  Well written and thoroughly engaging!  I even googled a brank.  Well done!

I left a review - hope that was ok! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks so much, Carol!  And I VERY much appreciate you taking the time to write a review!  So glad you enjoyed the story!  :)
 
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