Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Wordcraft -- Writing’s little hacks: the double dip

Who hasn’t wished at some point wished she could be in more than one place at a time? Or grab an extra scoop of ice cream without doubling the calories? Or maybe get two sales for the cost of writing only one story, like British blogger Deborah Walker, http://deborahwalkersbibliography.blogspot.com/, who recorded an amazing 179 sales last year.

How did she do it? First, of course, by writing a lot and submitting a lot. But she notes that about half of those 179 sales were reprints. Yes, she’s learned to double dip on her sales by tapping the market for reprints. (And by marketing to foreign language venues, but more about that in a minute.)

I’m far from being as prolific as Deborah, but I’ve learned to love the reprint market. Reprints don’t always pay as well as markets for previously unpublished work, but they offer a chance to get our work in front of the eyes of new readers, or in new media. (Audio publications in general love reprints!) And don’t tell anybody, but sometimes I’ve even sold reprints for more than I got from the original sale.

Check your contracts to be sure you have the right to sell your story again. Typically, all rights (except first English-language or first North American publication) will revert to the writer within six months to a year.

Find those reprint markets the same way as markets for original work, online. I love to hear from readers about their favorite search sites. Mine include The (Submission) Grinder, http://thegrinder.diabolicalplots.com/ (free); Ralan, http://ralan.com/ (free); or Duotrope’s Digest, www.duotrope.com/, (by subscription, but consider checking out is first-month-free offer), where I set the search parameters for “accepts reprints”.

And about those foreign language markets Deborah uses? Canadian speculative fiction writer Douglas Smith maintains a list of non-English markets at his site, www.smithwriter.com/foreign_market_list.htm/.

How else to double dip? After long resisting the lure of Pinterest,
www.pinterest.com/, I realized it’s a great second venue for the photos I take for my blog posts. There’s no pay, but it taps a different set of potential readers.

Another double dip comes from book reviews. Recently, I wanted to help my friend, Kathleen M. Rodgers, whose new novel, Johnnie Come Lately, was published this month, and realized I could post virtually the same review I’d posted at this blog on Goodreads, www.goodreads.com/; and Amazon, www.amazon.com/. I stumbled around those sites a little before getting comfortable with their formats, but a couple of postings, I feel like an old hand. Again, its multiple places for people to read about Kathleen’s book and see a sample of my writing as well, at a single swoop.

Ardent reviewers and review readers will want to see Dallas Morning News writer Joy Tipping’s list of book review sites and blogs, “To get your book reviewed, take Tipping’s tips.” at this site. And for anybody who loves getting those free review copies, the Dallas-area Fresh Fiction organization is advertising for reviewers. For information, see http://freshfiction.com/.

And share all the ways you double dip as well!

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