Today, I found out that I was selected by a small online press house as a slush pile reader. They’ve got some interesting publications and the correspondence I had with one of the two editors / managing partners was crisp and professional.
I’m excited about this; I think it’s a great chance to a) learn more about the other side of the publishing industry, b) gain some experience, c) make some contacts (or "network," as the kids say these days), and d) get to read lots of fantasy and fiction. Most of their work is novel-length and I’ll have to read a minimum of one manuscript a month, which won’t be a problem. I should get my first work next week.
The editors sent me a story to critique as a test, to see if I was in phase with their thinking. According to them, I was spot on. I hope all the decisions are that clear-cut, as it was not a very good story and thus was easy to recommend against. I am dreading that first one that could go either way; having someone’s potential publication future in your hands makes the process slightly more serious than before. No more drinking wine as I critique. ("What? A horse? Fuck no, this should be a unicron. No, not a unicorn – a unicron. Yeah, green, with eight horns. Hic.")
And yes, I omitted the name of the publisher on purpose. No insider advantage for my readers. All three of you….
Oh, BTW, if you type "flint hatchet" (as one quoted phrase) and "blog" into Google, this page is the first listing. Something I’ve written is now part of Google’s search database. I’m famous now. Or maybe infamous. I didn’t know whether to cheer or cringe.