Authors for anthology related to climate/environment/eco-fiction

Tanja Bisgaard

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#21
Dear everyone following this thread - I have tried to describe in more detail how I imagine such an anthology could be created. Again - all comments, ideas, etc welcome - and please do point out any pitfalls! (Sorry about the length...)

How to do it

Partnership model: I would like to propose a partnership model where a group of authors go together and write 1-2 stories each. In other words, each author decides what story to write for the anthology – it will not be my decision.
I am not too worried about the stories being different in style etc – because I think that is what makes this type of anthology interesting. I hope other authors also will see it as an opportunity to be promoted via the other authors’ channels – creating a marketing opportunity for everyone involved.

Rights: We all have the same rights, and we all share the proceedings from sales equally. (Something similar to this compilation A Killer Thriller Collection - Eight The Hard Way (Mystery Thriller Suspense) eBook: Nick Stephenson, Ryan King, Kay Hadashi, Alan McDermott, Micheal Maxwell, R.S. Guthrie, Robert Swartwood, D. D. VanDyke: Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Store rights can be seen on the first page.)

Number of stories: It would be great with around 10 stories – so if we are 10 authors one story each, or if we are 5 authors 2 stories each. If we end up with a number in-between we will have to figure out how we do it.

Proposed story length: 3,000 – 6,000 words for each short story. But this can be discussed.

Setting: The world in 2047 where the focus is on what has happened regarding the climate and environmental challenges we face today. Topics might be (not an exhaustive list):

· A warmer world due to greenhouse gas emission – leading to the melting of the icecaps and thereby an increase in ocean levels
· Pollution due to CO2, chemicals, plastics, other waste etc.
· Acidic oceans leading to changes in marine life etc.
· Other effects on biodiversity, wildlife, plants
· What solution are being made – how has already been accomplished – what else needs to be solved for the people to have a “good” life?

Other issues (social, labour, etc.) can also be included to create a credible universe for the story.

Before committing: Since I am an unknown author, I would be happy to send potential author partners one of my short stories if they want to read it before they decide whether they want to commit or not.

Editing and proof reading: We team up in pairs and help each other.

Business model: I will take on the responsibility of “project manager” - making sure everyone keeps their deadlines, compile the short stories into one book, create an e-book (I hope I can get some advice on how to do that).

I do not have any money to pay anyone upfront, but I will try to get some funding from e.g. an NGO that works within the sustainability area. I suppose funding will be for managing the process, costs of setting up e-book and making a front page. We find a fair price for the book, and everyone gets an equal share.
And we also need to decide whether to print the book or not – I could ask for funding for that, too. But I am not sure how the logistics would work, though.
Even if do not get funding, I am still willing to do the work. Hopefully there will not be too many costs involved other than my time.

Marketing: We can all use our existing reader base. Mine is not very big I am afraid, but I will reach out to my professional network who all work within the sustainability area, and see if the book can be promoted during conferences and similar events. For those occasions print versions might be useful.

Timeline: First drafts ready by 1 June. Edits done by 1 July.
I do not have any experience in putting together an e-book, but hope it can be done by 1 September. (I suppose we also have to get a cover made – is that something we can do on our own – e.g. using Canva?)
 

Overread

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#22
A few thoughts:

1) LEGAL - I would strongly recommend that you consult a lawyer in this market area to ensure that you get a proper legal contract drawn up for this project. Whilst consultation to find a suitable lawyer might be free or cheap; the actual legal work will cost and be a key initial investment.
It not only protects yourself, but everyone else who signs up to this idea. It's also important to have it in place and ready before you start otherwise things could get messy and complicated.

2) Expertise - its a little concerning that, as the project leader, you've not really got the experience in publishing to take this project through to completion. Whilst I'm all for start-ups (and everyone has to start somewhere); I think that you need to read up and be on the ball. Furthermore you need to project that to those you're advertising this concept too. Otherwise its a neat idea, but without any real experience and without already having a game plan written out; you will likely flounder. Or if you make it through to publication it will be a rollercoaster of delays and nightmares (that's not a knock on you at all; but rather the practical realities that all projects have problems; being behind and always having to catch up with the problems easily creates more).

3) Turn around - considering that you have little capital to invest into this and thus cannot (likely) hire expertise at every level to oversea and run things; you are giving yourself a very tight deadline to work to. It's already March and you're wanting stories written by mid-year; then edited in a month. I understand your desire to publish during this key year, however I would also argue that the year in itself is not all "that" notable outside of a very niche group of people. As a result I think you can easily get away with extending deadlines and even releasing next year. I think that would be far preferable (and might be the only realistic course of action) rather than pushing things and rushing the whole process.
That your marketing plan is currently to use existing fanbases of your authors already suggests that a delay to another date shouldn't be a problem. You're not tied to this year.

4) Finance - I'd honestly be very surprised if you could gain NGO finance for this. At present you've not even really got enough to get Kickstarter or similar backing in any form; let alone approaching professional companies for finance. That you've also not got a full handle on the process of publishing it also suggests that you've not even got a ballpark idea of how much this project could cost.
It's very hard to get books financed for publication - very hard. It's near impossible when you're an unknown name in the market. Bodies with access to finance would be far more likely to turn over money to an author/editor with a string of successful publications under their belt already. You "MIGHT" get support this way if you can get a notable author or editor to take part in this; but I wouldn't rely on it. Also any author considering offering their influence for such would have the risk that, should this project fail, it would be their name and reputation harmed as well.
You also have to consider that any body funding such a project would expect profits from it to be a return to them or their cause. As a result there'd be an investor on board who'd want a slice of the pie that you and the other authors are already sharing. Some groups might even want all profits to be a donation (ergo each author is donating rather than being paid for services).


I don't want to be a downer, but at present it feels like you've got the makings of an idea without the expertise to actually bring it through to completion. I feel as if you've got enough energy to collect together a selection of stories from authors in an informal manner; but actually making a professional proper publication is out of reach at present.
 

Jo Zebedee

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#23
Quality is my big concern. I publish nothing without a copy edit - even after using a very able writing group'a feedback. Without that final edit, I'd be out. I might be flexible in payment - but not about what goes out under my name.
 

Overread

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#24
Quality is my big concern. I publish nothing without a copy edit - even after using a very able writing group'a feedback. Without that final edit, I'd be out. I might be flexible in payment - but not about what goes out under my name.
With anthologies you also have to consider that its not just the quality of your writing but of all the writing. Whilst each story is its own entity they will all be judged, roughly, together by the reader. So if there's a few in there which are poorly edited that will instantly reflect badly on the rest, even if they are otherwise fine.
 

Tanja Bisgaard

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#26
On a more positive note - I will investigate the opportunities for funding before giving the idea up entirely. How much does a professional editor cost? and what other services would I need to finance - ideas on the figures for that?
 

Tanja Bisgaard

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#27
UPDATE: I have now got 10 authors together for the anthology, so if anyone else would like to join, the deadline is May 1. We are mainly a group of new authors, although some have been pubslished. Send me a PM if you want to join us!
 

johnnyjet

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#28

Tanja Bisgaard

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Aug 16, 2016
Messages
123
Location
Copenhagen, Denmark
#32
I thought I'd post an update on this project since Tanja hasn't posted for a while.

I am one of the authors who joined this project since the idea intrigued me. Tanja has been moving forward with this project full steam ahead. I'm impressed by her persistence and resourcefulness. Read all about it on the web page Home and crowdfunding page https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/...ure/x/11034069?fref=gc&dti=1831937027061069#/.
THANKS @johnnyjet
Happy to have you onboard (y)
 

johnnyjet

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#33
I'm happy to announce I'm part of a group of authors from around the world participating in @Tanja Bisgaard's anthology of eco-fiction called 2047: Short Stories from Our Common Future -- stories written to create awareness about pollution, excessive resource use, and climate change. It is available at Amazon as a Kindle Edition now and in a print edition soon. Check it out here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077T7BZ56/?tag=id2100-20 or here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B077T7BZ56/?tag=brite-21.
 
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