An Interview With The Ink Babes

Posted by Chrissey - 9th March 2012

The world of publishing is experiencing change. New electronic media, lowering print costs, and print on demand services are bringing a new sense of freedom to a market previously dominated by publishing companies.

Bleeding Ink - snippets of text and blood splatters on a cream backgroundI had the pleasure of interviewing three authors who decided to embark on an adventure into these newly opened up waters. They are the Ink Babes, and they are putting together an anthology of dark and twisted tales; Bleeding Ink. They’re here to tell us a bit about the anthology and the experience of creating it.

Chrissey Harrison: Can you tell us a bit about who the Ink Babes are?

Ink Babes: Separately we are Tammy Crosby, Lisa Forget and Patricia Hollett; together we are the Ink Babes; three women who wanted to find a way to bring together well written dark stories, flash fiction and poetry and turn it into an anthology for all to read. It was easy to join forces to share this endeavour, because of our passion for writing and reading. We not only work well together but we get along really well. That’s a huge plus when putting together something of this magnitude.

You can read more about the Ink Babes on their website under Who Are the Ink Babes?

CH: Bleeding Ink is a collection of dark, twisted tales. What made you choose this style and genre for the anthology?

IB: That’s easy, we’re all dark and twisted!

For starters we each write supernatural fiction, it’s what drew us together in the first place. Well that, and belonging to the same online writing forum, and our undying love for all things Kelley Armstrong. This genre was a natural fit.

CH: You accept submissions of short stories, flash fiction, micro-fiction and poetry. What made you choose to put such diverse formats together into one volume?

IB: The goal was to create something that would break up the pace of the anthology. In other words, we didn’t want all long stories, or short stories, but wanted to give readers a variety. We also wanted to give writers a venue to display their talent; some tell a story over tea, some tell a story in a blink. This anthology gives all their skills equal time to shine.

CH: Small scale publishing and self-publishing are growing in popularity and credibility. Do you think we’ll see more author driven publishing endeavours, like yours, in the future?

IB: We think the trend toward self-publishing is an ever-growing field, and more authors are pursuing that avenue. Self-publishing seemed the most natural fit for us as we’re trying something very different here with this anthology. It’s the best way to see how it will be received by the public so we can determine the market potential for future works. We are hopeful that it will be successful for all involved, especially for the contributors.

CH: What have been the biggest obstacles you’ve faced so far? Were they things you expected to be difficult?

IB: What we expected to be difficult? Nothing of course! How could reading all these great works possibly be work?

We didn’t expect it to be difficult when we first decided to take on this enormous task. There’s a lot more work involved than what anyone would guess.

Organization is paramount to making everything run smoothly. We’re lucky in that there are three of us so we divide the tasks evenly. We take turns doing a weekly blog post on our website to keep things interesting. Reading and evaluating the submissions takes much time and consideration, we discuss them between the three of us in order to make a fair and worthy decision.

The biggest obstacle is probably finding time for our own writing and personal life ‘stuff’.

CH: You must have received a lot of submissions. Do you feel you’ve learned something as authors by experiencing the submission process from the other side?

IB: Oh, absolutely! We’ve received quite a lot of submissions. Reading, assessing and deciding if they fit with our anthology theme takes time.

It’s really hard when you have to turn down a well written wonderful story because it doesn’t fully fit the profile or didn’t meet the guidelines. We feel for authors everywhere, after all we are them, but we also have a better appreciation for editors now as well.  It’s a blessing to see both sides, one we highly recommend to others if you’re so inclined.

CH: What advice would you give writers who are considering submitting a piece to your anthology?

IB: Make sure your piece fits the guideline and theme of what you’re submitting to. Double check your grammar, punctuation and spelling before submitting to any publication.

Also, cut anything that doesn’t move your story forward. In other words, don’t include a lot of back story. These are short stories, flash fiction and poetry, and we believe people reading them want to get to the ‘blood and guts’ of the story. The quicker the better. Start with the action, hook the reader and end it with a ‘poignant pause’. Make everyone remember your words.

CH: Where will people be able to buy the Bleeding Ink anthology and when will it be released?

IB: We are targeting a cut-off date for submissions of March 31, 2012, and at that point we are hoping to schedule our editing and decide on a release date. We will update our website with all the pertinent details as they become available.

CH: And lastly, tell us why you think people should read the anthology.

IB: Our hearts are set on making Bleeding Ink something that will intrigue our readers. Something that will stay with them and make them want to tell all their friends about it. And, if we’re lucky, make them ask for more.

We hope the quality of the anthology speaks to the talent of the writers, and the hearts of our readers.

IB: We’d like to thank Chrissey for taking the time to interview us for The Great Escape, and for your interest in our anthology. It’s been a pleasure answering your questions and we hope your readers enjoy the interview and find the time to visit our website.

Bleeding Ink Anthology - click to visit the official website

Submissions to Bleeding Ink are open until 31st March. You can find all the details, plus more about the Ink Babes and entertaining weekly blog posts at bleedinginkanthology.wordpress.com