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Tell Me – Sarah Hans

(Crossposted from Jennifer Brozek)

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Sarah at conventions and publishing her in anthologies. I’m really happy she got to do this anthology with Alliteration Ink. She and I will both be at Origins Game Fair Library this next weekend.

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If you’d told me two years ago that I would be editing my first anthology in 2013, I would’ve laughed at you, because I was a new writer with hardly any publishing credits under my belt. Two years doesn’t seem like much time to go from barely-a-writer to editor. But a series of events conspired to place me in the right place at the right time and friends with the right publisher. Steven Saus of Alliteration Ink asked me if I had any ideas for anthologies I’d like to edit, and I said yes! In writing, every door that opens leads to bigger (and sometimes better) doors, and if you want to make writing a career you have to diversify and try as many as you can. So I took a deep breath and opened the Editor door.

The idea for Sidekicks! came from the novel I’ve been writing since Summer 2012. The book is about a girl who is the quintessential sidekick, someone who is perpetually overlooked and continually underappreciated...even by herself. I wondered what other authors would do with the same concept. Why would anyone choose to be a sidekick?

The anthology was invitation-only because I’m too busy with a full time job and graduate school to deal with hundreds of submissions. I primarily chose authors I knew from writing groups and conventions, and Steven gave me a list of authors Alliteration Ink had worked with in the past. So if you’re an aspiring author and you’re out there wondering how to get on an editor’s invite list, the answer is to join a writing group and go to a convention or two. Networking is still surprisingly powerful in this day and age.

Sidekicks! contains twenty stories in a variety of genres. The authors we invited took the concept of the sidekick and really ran with it. We have a few of the stories you’d expect, about superhero and supervillain sidekicks, but I think you’ll find the trouble the characters find themselves in unexpected and entertaining. We also have stories about a telekinetic gun slinger, a dictator’s conniving brother, a stone-faced Martian warrior, and a kidnapping victim who takes matters into her own hands. We’ve got sidekicks who are female, male, people of color, soldiers, students, gay, straight, etc. Some of the stories are quite funny, and others are very serious, and still others are rather dark, so there’s a little something for everyone. We tried our hardest to answer the question of what motivates someone to become (and remain) a sidekick. I think the answer is different depending on which character you ask--but they all have their reasons. And they’re all good ones.

If you’d like to hear some of the authors from Sidekicks! read their work, we’ll be at the Whetstone Library in Columbus, Ohio on June 8 from 5-7pm (Facebook event here). To keep an eye out for future events or to ask me a question about this blog post, please find me on my blog, twitter, and facebook! Thanks for reading!