We've gotten a number of complaints from the people who read our Original Fiction section. They say that they like our stories (Thank you very much!), but that the way we serialize them makes 'em really hard to follow, and kind of kills the interest in the stuff. Our numbers would seem to bear that out: New stories start out with boffo reads, and as each installment comes online, the numbers decline.
It was a bad decision, and the blame is entirely mine. Basically, I've been breaking the stories up based on their 'beats' rather than any consideration of length. It's a stupd way to run a railroad, I realize. Actually, I've realized it for a month or so now, but there wasn't time to do anything about it until now. So, firstly, I apologize to everyone, and secondly, here's what we're gonna' do in the new year:
1) We're going to reprint our stories from 2009 in 2010 all in one piece, with no breaks. Because of the dopey way I broke 'em up, a lot of the stories didn't really get the exposure they deserved, so, if you started reading one and drifted off, you'll soon get a chance to to re-read it all in one sitting, without any annoying "Continued next week" or "This is part 7 of the story, for part 1 go here on alternate tuesdays of months that don't have an 'R' in them" crap. After we exhaust that, we'll be running new stories.
2) We *will* still be serializing stories, assuming they're long enough to justify it, but the segments will be much longer - generally around ten pages or so - so as to preserve as much of their narrative punch as possible, and to annoy the readers as little as possible.
3) We're going to be introducing a feature in our serialized stories whereby you can download the whole story for a nominal fee - less than a buck - after reading a section. If you read the first installment of "Home Again," for instance, and decide you really can't wait to see how it ends (It's an 80-page novella, that'd take a while to run even under the new rules), you can guy the whole thing for cheap and read it at your leisure. (PLEASE NOTE: This option will only be available for stories *we* own the copyrights to. Stuff by outside authors will not be available at this time for licencing and legal reasons)
4) Because the segments will be longer, we'll be needing more stories this year. I've got several in the pipeline, but they're not done yet. Neorandomizer has a good one that's in editing right now, R2 has one or two he's working on, Dr. Charlie Starr has submitted a novella and Tessa Dick has kindly allowed us to reprint one of her stoires, and I'm sure several more will occur to us before the end of the year, but since we're going to be running stuff in bigger chunks, which means we'll be burning through our material much faster. Quite frankly, we're not up to the task of generating enough new stories on our own to have Original Fiction up every week, so there might be some 'dead sundays' here. We'll do our best, however.
5) The internet is a demon bitch goddess who devours material and craps out nothing but a ravenous desire for more material. You can help us out: If *YOU'VE* got an original Science Fiction story, submit it to us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org . If it meets our editorial standards (Which are pretty lax, really), we'd love to run it. We won't pay you any money, but we won't be making any money off of it either (See "3" above). You'll retain full rights and credit for your story *AND* since we get around 500 hits a day at present, it means your work will be seen, read, and enjoyed by a hell of a lot of people you've never met or heard of. How cool is that? (Answer: very cool.) It's a good way to make a name for yourself, if'n ya' wants ta' be a writer when ya' grows up.
And that's that.
Oh, wait, one last thing: Many of you have been suffering through my "Superheroes are Gay" story in tiny, sub-bite-sized chunks. Next Sunday we'll run the *ENTIRE* short story in one piece, from start to finish, and I do apologize for the inconvenience.