Sooner or later it happens to every writer. The story that’s too weird in characters or plot to get past the sales force of a publisher, or has the wrong word count–too long for a short story sale (10,000 words or more), too short for a novel sale (less than 55,000 words).
It used to be when that happened all one could do was save those stories up for a collection of short stories or let them rot in a drawer.
And then after awhile, one reaches a point where one knows a story is going to be quirky after the first few pages, and an overwhelming urge would hit to just give up on it since there was virtually no market for it.
That’s why I’m so excited about the new distribution systems opening up through Smashwords, Amazon Kindle, and Barnes & Noble’s PubIt. Writers’ quirky stories are going to be able to see the light of day. I’m looking forward to seeing what some of my favorite writers do in this new world.
And these days I no longer get the urge to stifle a story after the first few pages, because I know if it’s of publishable quality I can find a home for it, no matter what, down the road. No story I write need sit rotting in a drawer–unless (like the first novel I wrote) it ought to. Bad writing is still bad writing in this new world.