Bittersweet

I’m not very good at change management; more of a stick my head in the sand and pretend it’s not happening kind of person. So, I hadn’t thought to write a post on the ending of Authonomy until now. It’s been my online home for the past year, a community of writers, readers and the craziest people I’ve ever encountered. I’ve made good friends, and discovered amazing writers whose books I hope will be enjoyed by a wider readership.

But on the 30th September, HarperCollins is shutting down the site. I suspect they’ve left already, but the sign’s still up. Whatever the commercial reasons behind the closure, I think Authonomy has been a brilliant experiment. I don’t know if I would have written as much as I have in the past year if it wasn’t for the encouragement of my critique groups on the site.

The ending is bittersweet for me. Today, the final Top 5 MSS to reach the Editor’s Desk were selected for review by HarperCollins editors. The Songs of All Poets was number 2, and I should expect a review by the end of the month.

For some (or most) writers on the site, this was the holy grail, the carrot we read, reviewed and commented for. While I can sigh with relief that I “made it”, I can’t help but think of the books that nearly did.

I discovered these amazing books on Authonomy:

  • Stone Circle by Kate Murdoch
  • Serpentine by John Bayliss
  • Finding Charlie by Katie O’Rourke
  • Ghosts of Chechnya by Jennie Ensor
  • Fait Accompli by Elizabeth Warner
  • Letters from a Shipwreck in the Sea of Suns and Moons by Raymond Holland
  • Evenrood by Richard Bradburn
  • Gone for a Soldier by Kathleen Kelly Garlock
  • Bad Business by Andy Paine
  • The Ensanguined Flowers by Cindra Spencer

Plus many more. All future bestsellers.

***update*** The Authonomy website has ceased to exist.

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