World market opening up for fiction writers
Whenever two or more writers gather, the conversation will inevitably include lamentations about the decline in the number of readers in the U.S. Another trend, the growing international market, however, has given me hope that fiction writing is not a dying profession.
One of my short stories, "Call Me Mr. Positive,", currently appears in the new print anthology Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show. Yesterday, I was contacted by an Israeli science-fiction monthly, Mercury Magazine, who bought reprint rights for a Hebrew translation. Oy vey, I was happy.
My experience is a faint echo of the international success being enjoyed by other writers (notably including our Tobias Buckell) as stories are being translated into Russian, Hungarian, Chinese, enjoying new readerships worldwide. All of this is thanks to the internet, through which the original stories gain quick worldwide exposure, digital files, which allow the source material to be sent with the click of a key, and digital printing, making production of small-run magazines economical.
When one's potential audience suddenly grows from 300 million to six billion, what once looked like oblivion suddenly seems like a bright new world. Writers, take heart!