Friday, September 30, 2016

How to Get Your Short Story into an Anthology

By Pamela Crane

It was the first time I’d been called the “b” word. My husband and I were sitting cattycorner at the dining room table—me scratching off crayon scribbles while Hubby piled after-dinner dishes—and all four kids had finally gone to bed (note I said bed but not asleep, as their chatter permeated down the hall). Then the “b” word slipped out: “Brilliant, honey. You’re brilliant!”

I had just shared some big news with him, which provoked the praise. My short story had just gotten accepted into a traditionally published anthology. It was a huge leap for lil’ ol’ me, a game-changer. My humble short story thriller, The Scream of Silence, would be in the company of literary greats!

If you have a short story in you, you too can grab hold of anthology opportunities, and it’s not as hard as you might think. Stay seated (at your computer, typing) because it might just fall into your lap.

Step number one: Get writing! The best part of writing a short story is that it doesn’t take a lot of time. If you have idle hands, start now and hone it, then save it for the right time. 
Next, the biggest “in” is your author connections. In my case, another author I had collaborated with on marketing a year prior came to me with the offer out of the blue: “Hey,” he said, “interested in writing a short story for an anthology?”

How could I say no to the free publicity?

“Heck yeah!” I replied. And that night I started brainstorming what to write. I decided to write a prequel to my upcoming Little Things That Kill Series, since the anthology publicity could help spread the word about it.

And so it began.

My big break came from an author who knew another author who mowed the grass of another author being published by this large house. My point: Make connections with fellow authors. Nurture them. Join writers groups locally or on social media—it’s littered with this crowd. Sure, it’s the nature of writers to isolate themselves; it’s how writing is—a lone affair. But when it comes to discovering opportunities, it’s all about connecting.

If your author connections aren’t reaping anthology opportunities, it’s not the end of the road. Look up anthologies on Amazon, find the name of their publisher, and solicit your short story to them. Many online magazines also publish short stories. Or better yet, consider collaborating with your newfound fellow authors to create an anthology together, opening up a realm of shared creativity.

Whatever anthology route you pick—or that picks you—it’s sure to be an exciting adventure.
Pamela Crane is a professional juggler. Not the type of juggler who can toss flaming torches in the air, but a juggler of four kids, a writing addiction, a horse rescuer, and a book editor by trade. She lives on the edge (ask her Arabian horse about that—he’ll tell you all about their wild adventures while trying to train him!) and she writes on the edge. Her characters and plots are her escape from the real world of dirty diapers and cleaning horse stalls, and she thrives off of an entertaining tale. She is the author of the best-selling psychological thriller "The Admirer’s Secret," Amazon top 20 short story "A Fatal Affair," and her latest releases "A Secondhand Life" and "A Secondhand Lie." To pick up a copy of a FREE book, or to find out more about her chaotic existence, visit her website at Author Links:

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