Against the Wind

An author’s lament

I enjoy the promotional aspect of writing, mostly. Whether it’s scheduling newsletters for my Substack, updating my website and blog or making little videos for Tiktok, I experiment boldly and gladly. I accept defeat philosophically, dust myself off and try something else.

Sometimes, though, the sheer unrelenting effort of getting folk to clap eyes on my stories gets me down.

Today is one of those days.

Many people who read this will be in that same crowded little boat. In online writers’ groups, whether on Medium, in Twitter’s writing community, on Substack or on Booktok, we’re mostly promoting our writing to a supportive but time-poor crew of fellow writers. Each with a long To Be Read list already.

Out there, somewhere, amorphous and shifting like fog on the horizon, is the Greater Reading Public. It seems a wide gulf between us.

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Telling Tall Tales … and Tiny Ones

Launching a Substack storyletter — progress and plans

I decided towards the end of last year that I was going to launch a fiction newsletter on the Substack platform. Tall and Tiny Tales went live on 1 February.

Substack seems to be rather the flavour of the month, although evaluations differ, and some, if I may say so, miss the point entirely. Substack isn’t really a community like Medium. It’s primarily a publishing platform. Your potential readership isn’t other Substackers: it’s anyone who likes to read your genre online. (Truly: forget about other Substackers. Stats on them are irrelevant.) The snag is: you have to do all the publicity for your publication yourself. No friendly algorithms are going to carry your word to the masses.

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