Ian Rose, a web developer and science fiction writer in Portland, Oregon and some friends have launched http://quarterreads.com a new venture to bring short story and poetry writers and readers together. The idea is simplicity itself: Writers submit their stories – up to 2,000 words max – for inclusion on the website. Readers can browse a few lines of the stories on the site, and pay just a quarter – just 25c – to read each story that they choose.
If a reader wishes to reward a writer for a story that they really enjoyed they can add a tip of 25c, 50c or $1.00 to the fee paid. Writers receive 22c of the first 25c and all of any additional tip.
Ian and his team read and vet all stories submitted.
Here’s what Ian has to say:
The site is a very small operation. Myself and a few friends were sitting around bemoaning the fact that there was really only one company doing anything like self-publishing of short stories, and that we had some growing differences with how they did that. Micropayments came up, and somewhere along the line, the quarter thing was raised, and everything sprang from that. The core idea was to make a middle ground between traditional publishing and self-publishing, maybe leaning a little more toward the latter than former: not forcing the reader into a pure slush pile, but not making choices based on our own tastes and preferences either. I think we’ve found a pretty good balance, and so far, there’s been a really good response to the idea.