SFFMP 99: A Quick Release Schedule with Traditional Publishing + Rocking Patreon with Seanan McGuire

Today, Seanan McGuire joined us on the show to talk about her urban fantasy and her science fiction, her rapid releases (under two different names) with traditional publishing, how she got started, and what led her to explore Patreon, where she is currently earning nearly $8,000 per short story.

**Note: a few curse words slipped out during the interview, so you might want to listen to this one with your earbuds in! 

Here are a few more details on what we covered:

  • How writing Buffy porn led to Seanan landing an agent
  • Publishing quickly even with traditional publishers
  • Why she has two pen names (Seanan McGuire and Mira Grant)
  • Seanan’s experiences with two different publishers, each with different ways of going about the business (she’s with Daw and also with Orbit)
  • What kinds of marketing things she does on her own, what she pays for, and what the publisher pays for
  • Why she decided to start a Patreon campaign and how she got the word out
  • Why she feels like you should submit to agents and try to make it through the gauntlet of traditional publishing even if you don’t ultimately sign
  • What a launch of a new book looks like for Seanan these days

For a limited time, grab Seanan’s first October Daye urban fantasy novel for 1.99 at Amazon. Visit her anytime at her website or on Twitter. You can also take a peek at her Patreon campaign.


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  • Great interview with Seanan! I’ve seen her on panels at conventions, she’s brilliant, and I appreciate her being on the show. Her fiction is pretty fantastic, too.

    I love her “purple unicorn” path for getting traditionally published–my trad pubbed friends are good examples of that, it’s usually something aside from just riding the “query-go-round” for a while and landing an agent. In other words, it seems individual to each writer how they got in.

    She’s going a great job of leveraging patron in fine fashion–really appreciated her sharing that.

    I don’t agree with her point about going the traditional route first before self-pubbing. Especially since if you are riding the query-go-round agents might not even reply, so getting feedback may be a long shot. However, I strongly agree about spending time improving your craft, getting feedback etc. before self-publishing.

    Thanks again for another great episode!

    • SFFpodcast

      I know I never got any feedback from the handful of query letters I sent out, or even from the partial that was requested, and it was a very slow process. However, I don’t think it’s a bad idea to try to sell some short stories before indie publishing. I figure if you can make some sales, then you at least know that your writing is at a professional level.