Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

Wine and Scrivener and Zelazny’s Corollary

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In the end, I was able to run a Windows version of Scrivener in Wine, and I am back in business full time – and not a minute too soon. I was rather wary of Scrivener on Wine, but it works surprisingly well with a minimum of fuss. A backlog of work in progress formed while I was re-installing and updating my system, and now I have to work on the double to finish everything and go on with my projects.

My idea to hit fifteen calls within the month is still on – with a few changes.
The story Monkey & the Cat was supposed to go to a very low-paying market, just for kicks, but has at this point cost me so much time and work, that sending it to the original target market would not be profitable. In the meantime, what was supposed to be a 2000-words short has evolved into a 5000-words story, that also provides a glimpse into a world it would be nice to explore further, and the plot has moved away from the original theme of the call. So, I’m looking for a new market, and a high-paying one.

And lass night a spark of fuzzy serendipity crackled here in my room, as I heard about Roger Zelazny’s technique to make money writing, and I was like “what an idiot I’ve been!”

Roger Zelazny explained during an interview that when he was starting ot as a writer and he wrote mostly short stories, his strategy was to mail his stories to the highest-paying market, straight away. If they rejected the story, he would then submit to the second-highest-paying market, and so on, until he made a sale.
In this way he was sure his stories always made as much as possible.

This is, to me, Zelazny’s Corollary to Heinlein’s Third Law, that states that a story must be kept doing the rounds until it sells.

And I’ll never be as good as Roger Zelazny, of course. He’s up there in my personal pantheon, between Leiber and Peake and Wolfe, and he is one of those writers I re-read to learn the ropes.
I’ll never be that good.
But there’s nothing wrong in trying.

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

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