Announcing Azure Fire Publishing

AFP header | Azure Fire Publishing: encouraging youth-friendly Fantasy & Sci-Fi literacy through writing challenges

As you know, the Fantasy and Science-Fiction Network (FSFNet) is dedicated to helping fans find the very best fantasy & sci-fi books for children and adults (both young and old) which do not exceed a PG-13 rating. FSFNet strives to be a primary source for the latest G/PG/PG-13 fantasy/science-fiction (sci-fi) books, news, and events. We are a collective of authors working together to enrich the genres we love for fans worldwide.

FSFNet supports its member authors by sharing tips, sources, and advice for improved production, publishing, marketing, and fan outreach. All of these activities require time and financial support. Our group is run entirely by published best-selling authors who should be writing more books. But we love the genre so much, we freely share our support with new authors. Helping new authors get a good start adds so much to our community for all fans of fantasy and science fiction.

However, the costs of supporting FSFNet operations have been growing with each passing month. Nowadays, they are roughly $4,000 a month. These cover, among others:

  • Hosting. We need a robust enough hosting plan to support the highest spikes in traffic we ever get so we don’t crash during those moments and ruin our happiness.
  • ActiveCampaign. This is the service we use to email posts out to the subscription list. This fee grows as the email list grows.
  • Ongoing web development. It’s a website, so it has problems as it grows, it needs constant maintenance, there are always upsetting glitches coming out of nowhere and, occasionally, we add a new site feature. All of this takes days or hours of work by people who have the programming skills to do the right thing without breaking everything else, and those people expect to be paid for their expertise.
  • Marketing for events. When we announce a new event, we need to promote it to be sure that the announcement reaches to everyone.
  • Administrative Employee. We have a great paid administrative assistant. We can only afford to cover 10 hours a week with no vacation or sick time. Right now, she handles things like redistribution requests, spam comment deletion, website upkeep, author services, and a bunch of other little jobs. These things end up adding up to a few hours each day, and, without this employee, we end up getting behind and dropping many needed activities. Getting our volunteers to cover takes time away from their content creation time, i.e. book and article writing.

Possible Solutions

Many of our new authors are not yet earning enough to pay membership dues and we’d like to keep the group open and supportive for everyone to join.

However, we’ve grown to a level where volunteer time is not enough, and our resources are limited. Although currently stable, we have already begun dropping some of our events supporting literacy and reading for lack of hands and funds. For FSFNet to continue, it requires ongoing sustaining income.

Thinking about the long-term self-sustaining plan, we have ruled out using ads. It would cause a shift in our focus. We want to concentrate on promoting awesome fantasy and science-fiction; not just those authors who can afford to “pay to play.” In short, ads are annoying and hurt the user experience.

No membership dues and no ads leaves little space for authors to produce a sustaining income for FSFNet. So, we came up with a better way to do it: Azure Fire Publishing.

Azure Fire Publishing To The Rescue

Azure Fire Publishing is a 501(c)(3) literary nonprofit charity dedicated to inspiring a lifelong love of reading and enriching the fantasy and science-fiction genres. Azure Fire Publishing encourages literacy through fantasy and science-fiction writing challenges and publications. It mentors new authors, helping them grow into sensational creators of magnificent fiction. Its author challenges inspire a lifelong love of literacy through learning the art of storytelling for creating fantastic new worlds.

Why Azure Fire Publishing?

By making FSFNet part of Azure Fire Publishing, we can help fund it without the need for introducing membership dues. This is important because we need to make FSFNet self-sustaining in order to allow it to go on for a long time. After a few years, we have proved it works. We have authors helping each other, a heavily visited website, fans signing up to the news channel and newsletters. We love creating new content for the site and news channel—when we need a break from writing our books, doing a little research and writing an interesting new article is great to let us enrich the genre while having personal fun time. This will always be the case.

What Does All This Mean For You?

As far as FSFNet members are concerned, nothing changes, except for the fact that the FSFNet will now be supported by Azure Fire Publishing and by private donations. We have set up a Patreon page to support FSFNet operations. By making FSFNet part of Azure Fire Publishing, we can make donations count more.

Donations are tax-deductible and go directly to Azure Fire Publishing. The accounts ensure all of the FSFNet funds received are used primarily to cover FSFNet operations. Any excess funds go to supporting Azure Fire Publishing’s fantasy and science-fiction literary events and publishing. So patronage is always supporting fantasy and science-fiction works.

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  • Sally Ember, Ed.D.

    Excellent! i’ll be out in Seattle at the end of August. Is there a place to visit for Azure?