Good news: I am back home. Bad news: I lost my Kindle in Heathrow airport and spent most of my five-hour layover trying to report it lost or find it, which means I couldn't do the markup on Matt's story that I wanted to. I did send him the cash, because it's a good story and there's no need to keep him deprived on that account. There are some suggestions I'll make, and some issues I need to do a better job of figuring out. I will post about these later. Short version is I need to figure out how to deal with getting a longer story than I had originally planned on (I paid $300 but I also said 5 cents a word, so have to figure out which version of the story I want and how/whether to deal with the overage). My plan at the moment is to do this with a few more stories and then put the result out as an ebook anthology; I have a small press LLC that hasn't been doing anything, so that is the way I figure I'll go. If folks have criticisms or suggestions, let me know, because I'm feeling this out. Biggest objection I can see from a writerly point of view is that this is 1) flat rate and no royalty and 2) basically perpetual, but I think that the fact that it becomes non-exclusive as soon as you sell it elsewhere helps ameliorate that a bit. It's an experiment.
Some folks have asked I would sponsor a novel, and the answer is that for that kind of payment I would really feel pressure to be buying something sellable, and I'd hate for somebody to take the challenge and then find out that I don't want to buy it. Yeah, they could try to sell it elsewhere, but I'd rather have an open submissions policy. I will see about getting this done at some point in the not-too-distant future.
I am thinking that I would like to publish some adventure novels. I say this as an unabashed lover of what's called "men's adventure;" not only do I think folks would like these, but I think there is an untapped market for "women's adventure" novels. I will start working on a solicit for this in the not-distant future.
Side note: who all is going to Dragon*Con? Be fun to do a DW fandom meetup at some point, if folks're interested.