A quick word to address a question that was raised yesterday: the new MW schedule, as I understand it, is as follows (Misty or whoever, should feel free to correct me as necessary): David on Monday; Misty on Tuesday; Faith on Wed.; Catie alternating Thursday (with various guests?); AJ and Ed alternating Friday; Kalayna on Saturday; Sunday we all rest.
On with the post, then…
As some of you know, I’ve been working with Spotlight Publishing this year as an acquisitions editor, creating and overseeing a line of sf and fantasy books for them. The relationship started when they published my short story collection, The Trouble With Eating Clouds, and now we are about to release the fourth book in the line, a collection of IGMS stories headlined by Peter S. Beagle and the other winners of the 2010 InterGalactic Awards (which is basically IGMS’s annual readers’ poll).
The IGMS InterGalactic Awards Anthology (edited by Orson Scott Card and myself) will be followed by two more anthologies, both edited by Jason Sanford. One of those anthologies presents Jason’s favorite sf and fantasy stories from his eight years running the Million Writers Award, and the other presents his favorite mainstream/non-genre stories from the contest from that same time period. Those two books will come out next year at the beginning of the nominating process for the 2012 Million Writers Award.
As you will surely have noticed, the line-up is heavily laden with collections of short stories (the other two books are single-author collections of stories by Jason Sanford and James Maxey), and I think as much as anything else, what I’m doing here today on MW is not so much trying to teach you anything or make any point, but find out what you think, what your opinion is on the subjection of collections vs novels. One of the biggest reasons I decided to work with Spotlight is because they were so open to publishing anthologies and short stories collections, something the big NY publishers seem to be producing fewer and fewer of. I understand why the big guys do so few collections—they don’t sell nearly as well as novels—but that leaves a lot of deserving books/stories homeless.
So my question for you today is this: As readers, what are your thoughts on the value of anthologies and short story collections? What makes you buy one over another? Or are they simply something you avoid altogether (and if so, why)?
Please help me understand these books better through the eyes of the people who read (or don’t read) these things. Because like it says on the back of the book cover up above, it’s the readers who matter most.