A couple of years ago, I came up with the idea of putting out minianthologies - collections of five to ten stories - on Kindle as a way to use up some of my stories and to let people know I exist. Well, I have just put out my latest minianthology - "A Cabin Under a Cloudy Sea and other stories." It contains five stories set upon the moon. The blurb I have for it is as follows:
Hopefully, in the not too distant future humans will return to the moon. We will build bases and colonies, create farms and factories, and live, love and learn. “A Cabin Under a Cloudy Sea and other stories” contains five short stories set upon the moon. They give the tiniest glimpse of the possibilities awaiting us there.I hope you'll check it out, and if it strikes your fancy you can download it for only $0.99. I hope you'll enjoy.
The story behind this minianthology is somewhat long. Part of the idea behind my minianthologies is to show people a sampling of my writing, but I also like to group similar stories. When I realized I had several stories set on the moon, it was natural to put them together. A couple of these were published before - I've revised them for this - but I also wanted a couple new stories. I had one story that involved time travel, and I haven't figured out how to make it work. So I would start working on this collection, only to get stuck on this story, set it aside to let my creative juices flow, only to then get caught up in some other project. It was probably almost two years ago that I started this project, but I didn't really get anywhere with it until about four months ago.
About four months ago was when I learned my story "The Reluctant Host" would appear in Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What? which would be published now. (See my previous blog post.) You know what would be good, I thought? If I had a Kindle book come out at the same time to get some of that chicken soup splashover.
Of my dozen or so projects, "A Cabin Under a Cloudy Sea and other stories" was the closest to being finished, so I set out to finish it. One problem was this time travel story I couldn't make work. Fortunately, I had recently come up with a new story idea also set upon the moon, "Putting Down Roots." Since I could finish that story, and since the other stories in the collection were more grounded scifi (no warp drive or aliens) the time travel story kind of stood out. So I swapped the stories and set to work finishing it.
I was making steady progress, when in early July I smacked my forehead because I had missed something. July 20 marked the 45th anniversary of Apollo 11 landing on the moon. What better time to put out a collection of stories set on the moon? I debated for a bit if I should change my publication plans, but I couldn't finish it in time.
As it turns out, this later publication date may actually be better. One thing am really passionate about is setting up a permanent human presence in space, such as at a moon base. If I had published this a month ago, it probably would have been lost in all the hoopla for Apollo 11, which I believe all faded into obscurity on July 21st. But with this ebook coming out a month later, it can help advance my goal of moon bases in my lifetime by showing people the moon isn't just something to get excited about on big anniversaries.
At least, that's what I tell myself to keep from smashing my forehead for missing such an obvious connection.