Beach Hut Writers, Brighton, crowd-funding, Latest TV, Laura Wilkinson, publishers, short stories, ShortStops, spoken word, starlings, The Short Story, Thresholds, Unbound, Women Writers, writers
It’s been quite a week. I could see that I was getting towards the deadline for raising funds for my short story collection In The Future Everyone Will Be World Famous For Fifteen Minutes. It felt like I was stalled at the 40% mark and that I would never get enough support for the project to go ahead. I couldn’t really see what to do but I knew that I didn’t want this opportunity to slip away. In the last few weeks I have done events, sent out emails and press releases, written blog posts and had stories from the book published in journals and still there were only a handful of responses. I was very grateful to each and everyone of those new pledgers but I needed more. I decided it was time to change tactics. Over the last few days I have spent 6 hours a day solidly marketing. I have contacted every journal and short story organisation I could find and asked for their help. To my surprise the answer has almost always been yes. One editor replied within minutes with the opening line, ‘Hi Erinna – you’ve come to the right place!’ I was so grateful I could have cried. In the next few weeks I have articles coming out on Women Writers, The Short Story, Thresholds and Short Stops as well as guest posts on the blogs of friends and colleagues. The first of these is out today on Laura Wilkinson’s blog and she has cleverly called it In The Future Will Everyone Be Crowdfunding?
Last Friday morning I’d just got in from the school run when I took a phone call from Latest TV , in response to a press release I’d sent out a couple of weeks ago, could they come around in an hour to film me? I looked around my extremely messy house in horror but obviously I agreed. Creatives aren’t meant to be tidy, right? The film was posted on their Youtube channel on Tuesday and it has been an absolute godsend. It really represents what the book is about, how celebrity culture is everywhere and that this is not necessarily a good thing, and that one of the aims of the crowdfunding project is to draw attention to the lack of support given to the short story by UK agents and publishers. (When I write this in any article the editors always tell me I have to say ‘most UK agents and publishers’ but you know what, fuck it, this is my blog, and I want to go on the record as saying that this is true of 99.9999% of all UK agents and publishers!) I have set the film up to post on a loop on Twitter and Facebook with the buy-line ‘I’m trying to prove the popularity of the short story,’ and it’s getting quite a lot of attention as well as bringing me new pledgers. I am going to use the film as the basis for the campaign over the next couple of weeks. As of today I am at 58% and it really feels like I’m going to make it. I still need people to pledge so if you love short stories and think that they should get more attention from publishers please pledge to this collection.