Publishing short story collections on Amazon

Astro Pen

Write now.
Jan 24, 2020
Wales UK
Has anyone here published a collection of short stories on amazon?
I have accumulated a large file of them (mostly general fiction) after 5 years of writing.
Whilst they are not all great, I have enough that I am happy with to polish and compile a reasonable sized and, I hope, interesting collection.
Issues as I consider this are questions like:
"How tightly themed does a general fiction collection need to be?" and "How much variation in the length of the stories is acceptable?"
Also any practical elements you may have encountered with things like contents pages since there are no chapter divisions for eBook formatting.
Not sure if it's of help, but I was part of Distaff and the recent Femmes Fae-Tales anthologies done by a group of women, rather than a single author.

For Distaff they were all SF, but no theme as such, and the nine stories varied in length and tone. (I can't put my hands on word count figures just at the moment, though.)

For FFT, they were all fantasy and with female main characters, but of the nine a number had fae elements. Length varied from around 3,200 to over 10,000 words, total word count around 62k, I think. Again no theme as such and there was a variety of tone, including some comic pieces and others very dark or bitter-sweet. If it's of interest, what we did there was to start and end with what seemed the strongest stories, and then we tried to alternate long and short and light and dark so as to give variety.

We had problems with Amazon for FFT, but that centred around the fact some algorithm apparently thought there was plagiarism, which might have come about because elements such as bios were replicated in both anthologies, or might have been because one story within a story had been posted here on Chrons -- we never actually had an explanation of where the problem lay.

Serendipity dealt with the formatting for both, and for both paperback and ebook, and I'm pretty sure it caused a headache or two along the way. She might be able to give further details if you PM her.
Thanks @The Judge, useful info. (y)
Most of mine run between 500 and 2500 words. I may need to rewrite some for a bit more length.
Then again there is a readership that probably likes the "bite size pieces." of flash fiction.
So maybe 2 volumes, one shorts and one flash. ?
For both anthologies we asked for a minimum of 3,000 words (and a max of 15k) -- I'm not sure where that figure came from or who decided on it, but I doubt it was simply plucked out of the air. No idea if it's any kind of industry standard, though.

What might perhaps work well is if you have two or three flash pieces as interludes between the longer stories with a separate heading eg "Bite-Size Stories".
What might perhaps work well is if you have two or three flash pieces as interludes between the longer stories with a separate heading eg "Bite-Size Stories".
IIRC, the Raphael Bob-Waksberg short story collection, Someone Who Will Love You In All Your Damaged Glory, Did that kind of long/short - weird/normal - light/dark juxtaposition to great affect.

Also, probably the best book of short stories I've read in the last decade.
Very quickly Distaff word count came to 47,736 words over 158 pages for the paperback version - this includes everything i.e. title and information pages and bios. It was in 6inch by 9inch with the main test being 11pt.

Femmes Fae-Tales came to 64,049 words over 183 pages for the paperback version. Main text also in 11pt.

Similar threads