How To Build a Short Story Anthology

By Jason Boog Comment

Do you dream of resurrecting your favorite short stories in an anthology?

Today on the Morning Media Menu, author and Publishers Marketplace news editor Sarah Weinman explained how she created her new collection, Troubled Daughters, Twisted Wives: Stories from the Trailblazers of Domestic Suspense.

During the interview, Weinman explained how she assembled the collection from scratch, reviving stories that have been lost for years.

Press play below to listen to the complete interview. Weinman explained:

In terms of selecting of the stories, that was a matter of hunting through old issues of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and old issues of magazines that no longer exist and are sitting in dusty archives of the New York Public Library or more recent anthologies. In many instances, these stories are appearing for the first time in decades, and I believe all but a couple, it is their first appearance in eBook. It’s not just reintroducing the authors, it’s bringing the stories back for a new readership.

Weinman also added some advice about the tricky world of permissions:

One of the things that most interested me about putting an anthology together is that I did want to learn about the process of permissions. It’s a very important function in publishing. We think of it a lot in terms of securing music rights or quotes from poems, sometimes those little snippets can be extraordinarily expensive. It was a good way for me to learn the process and an exercise in the art of negotiation.

She concluded:

There were a couple of instances when I would go through my template of what rights I needed and what base fee I would offer. The agency or the rights-holder would come back with something else based on their own calculations. I would go “Well, I’m not sure we can make fit in with the permissions budget, but let’s talk and figure it out.” I learned a lot about the art of successful negotiation, in terms of having to give a little and take a little.