Earlier this morning I posted my story “Cleansing Fire” on my Patreon profile. This is the first story of my Solar System Stories series where I plan to write twelve stories set at various locations throughout the solar system. This story is set nearish the sun and is about a guy who does dangerous stunts. To read the story, you either have to become a patron at the low, low price of a $1 a story, or you can wait over a year until I collect them all into an ebook which will probably sell for $2.99.
What’s scarier than all the ghosts and goblins at your door? There’s an election next week.
To try to blunt the horror of the season, I’m offering my anthology of forty, short, political stories Political Pies for free! You’ll be able to download it to your Kindle now through Wednesday November 5. Download it early, and you can read it while waiting in line to vote on Tuesday.
If “free” isn’t enough to entice you, check out the cover and blurb:
Everybody complains about politics, but does anyone do anything about it? Stephen L. Thompson’s attempt to do something about it is to collect forty of his short stories with a political element into his Political Pies anthology. His stories are either politically neutral or equally condemning of the national parties. Instead of trying to sway you to one ideology or another, his goal is to just get people thinking about politics in the hopes a rose might grow out of all the political manure.
So what are you waiting for? Download your copy now, you won’t get another chance until next year.
So several months ago I heard of this Patreon site where creators of videos, comics, stories, or whatever can raise funds with the help of patrons. I thought it was a great idea, but I wasn’t too sure how well it would work for someone like me. But after thinking about, I decided to join.
My first project I’ll be working on is to write twelve, short science fiction stories of a few thousand words at least. These stories will be set in twelve “locations” in the solar system, the sun (well, near the sun), Mercury, Venus, Earth/moon, Mars, Asteroid Belt, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Kuiper Belt, and the Oort Cloud. My plan is to write a story a month, and at the end of the year I’ll polish up the stories and publish them as a Kindle ebook. Anyone who finds this interesting, and especially those who’d like to help out financially, should check out my Patreon Profile.
My original plan was to write the first story or two, and then start posting them in January. But recently I’ve been trying to force myself to write more, so I decided to start a few months early. The first story, set near the sun with the working title “Cleansing Fire,” should (I’ll say 95% likelihood) be up sometime in November. Right now I’d say it’s about a third done, but I hope by giving myself a deadline I’ll get around to finishing it. We’ll just have to see.
QuarterReads describes itself as “A short read at a fair price.” Basically, you read short stories or poems for a quarter. What’s really interesting is what happens for writers. Of that $0.25 you spend on a story, the author of said story receives $0.22. Having things the other way around where the author only gets $0.03 is more common. But that’s not all. If you enjoy the story, you can tip the author an additional, $0.25, $0.50, or $0.75, and all of the tips go to the author.
As someone who usually writes short stories, you can understand why I’m excited by something like QuarterReads. But for the site to really take off, requires readers. So I encourage you to check it out and hopefully find some stories you like. If you’re curious about my stories, here’s my author profile. Right now, I have two stories up but I’m hoping to add at least one a month.
Mere moments after midnight, I will start my 2014 30 Stories in 30 Days Challenge. In case you can’t figure it out, that’s where I try to write thirty short – sometimes very short – stories in as many days. In previous years I have posted the stories on my website or on my other blog, but this year I’ll be posting them on my Bubblews page. For more information, check out this post which should answer any questions.
Wish me luck.
A couple of years ago, I came up with the idea of putting out minianthologies – collections of five to ten stories – on Kindle as a way to use up some of my stories and to let people know I exist. Well, I have just put out my latest minianthology – “A Cabin Under a Cloudy Sea and other stories.” It contains five stories set upon the moon. The blurb I have for it is as follows:
Hopefully, in the not too distant future humans will return to the moon. We will build bases and colonies, create farms and factories, and live, love and learn. “A Cabin Under a Cloudy Sea and other stories” contains five short stories set upon the moon. They give the tiniest glimpse of the possibilities awaiting us there.
I hope you’ll check it out, and if it strikes your fancy you can download it for only $0.99. I hope you’ll enjoy.
The story behind this minianthology is somewhat long. Part of the idea behind my minianthologies is to show people a sampling of my writing, but I also like to group similar stories. When I realized I had several stories set on the moon, it was natural to put them together. A couple of these were published before – I’ve revised them for this – but I also wanted a couple new stories. I had one story that involved time travel, and I haven’t figured out how to make it work. So I would start working on this collection, only to get stuck on this story, set it aside to let my creative juices flow, only to then get caught up in some other project. It was probably almost two years ago that I started this project, but I didn’t really get anywhere with it until about four months ago.
About four months ago was when I learned my story “The Reluctant Host” would appear in Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What? which would be published now. (See my previous blog post.) You know what would be good, I thought? If I had a Kindle book come out at the same time to get some of that chicken soup splashover.
Of my dozen or so projects, “A Cabin Under a Cloudy Sea and other stories” was the closest to being finished, so I set out to finish it. One problem was this time travel story I couldn’t make work. Fortunately, I had recently come up with a new story idea also set upon the moon, “Putting Down Roots.” Since I could finish that story, and since the other stories in the collection were more grounded scifi (no warp drive or aliens) the time travel story kind of stood out. So I swapped the stories and set to work finishing it.
I was making steady progress, when in early July I smacked my forehead because I had missed something. July 20 marked the 45th anniversary of Apollo 11 landing on the moon. What better time to put out a collection of stories set on the moon? I debated for a bit if I should change my publication plans, but I couldn’t finish it in time.
As it turns out, this later publication date may actually be better. One thing am really passionate about is setting up a permanent human presence in space, such as at a moon base. If I had published this a month ago, it probably would have been lost in all the hoopla for Apollo 11, which I believe all faded into obscurity on July 21st. But with this ebook coming out a month later, it can help advance my goal of moon bases in my lifetime by showing people the moon isn’t just something to get excited about on big anniversaries.
At least, that’s what I tell myself to keep from smashing my forehead for missing such an obvious connection.
Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What? came out yesterday, and as you can see, my story “The Reluctant Host” can be found on page 293. And while it would be nice if you read mine first, I won’t be offended if you take your time and read all 101 stories about dogs.