Another Aphrodite Terra Update

Back in January, I extended the closing date for submissions to Aphrodite Terra to 31 May, but the response has been less… enthusiastic than I would have liked. I know I only want half a dozen pieces at most, but I was hoping to have a large-ish pool to choose from. Rocket Science received just over 100 stories in three and a half months, and from them I picked seventeen stories and five non-fiction pieces. The submission period for Aphrodite Terra has been open for six and a half months and I’ve received… sixteen submissions.

So, the question is: do I extend the submission period another month? Or shall I call off the anthology?

Originally, I hoped to have Aphrodite Terra ready for Loncon 3 in August. I can’t see that happening now. On reflection, perhaps that’s a good thing. I have too many personal projects on the go, too many to really focus on building up Whippleshield Books’ publishing “empire”. I still like the idea of a series of mini-anthologies, each focused on a different planetary body in the Solar System; I still think the idea of a series of mini-anthologies which take a literary approach to genre conventions is worthwhile. But it’s looking increasingly like now is not the right time for it.


The closing date for Aphrodite Terra is currently 31 May – the exact time is not important, as long as it’s in my inbox by the time I get up at 9:00 am on 1 June I’ll consider it before the deadline. I’ll make the call then on what to do. If I don’t have enough stories to choose from, then I shall indefinitely postpone Aphrodite Terra and return all the stories (please note: I have not bought any fiction yet, so no refunds will be required). I will post my decision here on this blog.

If Aphrodite Terra doesn’t go ahead, perhaps it’ll re-appear at a more propitious time. We shall have to see…


4 responses to “Another Aphrodite Terra Update

  1. Have you considered going from a series of mini-anthologies to two more regular sized anthologies?

    You could have an “inner planets” anthology for Mercury, Venus, and Mars, and an “outer planets” one for Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus.

    That would give you still *some* sort of uniqueness from other “Colonization” themed anthologies, but would also give you more leeway in terms of submission volume as you’d only need somewhere between one longish and three shortish stories for each planet in each anthology. (Of course, this would probably still go in the “future” column.)

    Personally, I love the idea both of mini-anthologies for each planet and of literary approaches to genre fiction. I even had an idea for your anthology!

    Unfortunately, I just haven’t been able to write at all recently for a number of job-related and personal reasons, and that’s unlikely to change by June. 😦

      • How could you forget Neptune? Neptune has a wealth of untapped opportunity for the hard science fiction writer. I have only scratched the surface of what it has to offer… but I suspect if Ian were to move onto this planet next, he would have as much difficulty of getting submissions, because wikipedia etc only gives brief summary descriptions. But once you get down into the detail, oh boy…

    • Breaking it down into mini-anthologies makes it more affordable – I only have to pay for five or six stories, about 20,000 to 30,000 words, instead of twenty stories and around 90,000 to 100,000 words. And that means I can offer more per word. Also, the sale of each subsequent mini-antho might well push up the sales of previous volumes.

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