I have an ugly question that’s not terribly hypothetical.  Ugly because it will require some writers to a) change their minds, or b) fail. Because the question precludes the magical talent fairy:  “I just want to write,” which means, “I’m so good that my marketing/promotions basically takes care of itself.”  Nice gig if you can get it…

So let’s say your admission to a fiction small-press or indie anthology (paying royalties, not a flat, per-word fee) will dependent on certain marketing requirements. What should those requirements be?

Notes:

  • Most of the promotions that happen for any given indie or small-press endeavor are via the authors and editors.  Kickstarters are driven by the authors and editors: they don’t just coalesce out of nothing.
  • The anthology will succeed (i.e., make a profit for its contributors and add to their reputation and reach) only inasmuch as each author carries their own weight.

Writing a good story, of course, contributes to the marketing–it’s easier to sell a good product–but most of the people who want into any given anthology aren’t top-notch writers (yet) and don’t have the kind of names built up yet that can justify including them in the anthology if they aren’t going to pull their weight on the sales side of the equation.

You’re the editor.  What do you require as a marketing threshold to get into the anthology?

Bonus points if you figure out a way that both increases the quality of the product and prevents well-off authors from buying their way in by offering to purchase ads, etc.

If you liked this post, please check this out Zombified! 24 slightly off-kilter tales with a twist of slightly ridiculous lemon and/or bowling alley.