Monday, May 23, 2011


Yesterday, in order to increase traffic to my novel, I researched the best sites for posting short stories with the intention of posting them for free. Not only that, but it's been a great many years since I was in a creative writing class, and feedback is very hard to come by.

The first site that I looked at was After reading that they are owned by Anheuser Busch, I was skeptical. Then I got to reading their massive legal disclaimer where they state that they can use the writing far into the future, even if I withdraw from the site. Uh, no thanks.

Not that my writing is beer company material, but back in the late 80s I wouldn't have thought that 'How Soon Is Now' by the Smiths could have been in a beer commercial, and then years later, there it was. Now, if there was sufficient money involved ... wait. No, sorry. Writer starvation sickness setting in.

The next one was a competition, and required payment.

I think my writing habit has cost me well enough money, thanks very much, just in latte's alone, but for those who are flush with cash as well as talent, here's the link:

The next one was called Booksie. It sounded juvenile, a little too cute for its own good, but I got to looking around, and the set up is great. I could upload for free, and there's little formatting (not to compare to an actual publishing site, but if you want a few pointers on how to format for publication in all formats, pay a visit to the labrinthe of I like how anyone can comment on anyone else's work, and how there are breakdowns by genre. Great.

I posted two stories on Booksie. These are actually the same two books that I had posted for sale for 99c on Amazon, so I felt a little twinge of guilt doing it. However, if you can prove to me you're the one person that paid for them and didn't return for refund, then I'll take you out for a coffee AND give you back the loonie.

That done, I started looking around for some good authors to start criticizing in order to get some input back.  I read probably thirty short stories (or the first pages), and then about fifty first paragraphs. I tried to do some criticism, but I found that there were some things glaring that could be easier fixed by dropping links to the Strunk and White style guide. I gave each a chance, but common major flaws made me ambivlent. Spelling mistakes, typos, jumping between first and third person narrative ... it was to the point where if it was well written, but boring, I stuck with it, giving much more of a chance than I would if I was buying it. In the end, I had to admit that there is way too much crap out there.

I take it for granted how much I learned in high school about writing, and how much I learned about technique in University. I could have spent all day writing criticism and correcting things, but in the end it's not my job. I posted my stories, and will definitely go back, but more as a lurker than a critic. I'm sure there's great writing there, and I'm determined to find it. Hopefully just a matter of time and persistence.

The stories that I uploaded can be found here (warning: sex and language in both)

Burnee, and Heaven, or Harbourfront in July

and my novel, here:


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