Comma Press has launched a new fiction platform called MacGuffin which hosts short stories and poetry in text and audio form. Anyone can upload a poem or short story, so long as they also upload a reading. This doesn’t have to be professionally recorded – Comma encourage writers to follow the lead of amateur podcasters, who in recent years have shown that technical barriers to entry have fallen away (and in fact, many of our favourite poems and stories on MacGuffin have a homemade feel – recorded on a smartphone, with birdsong in the background, or a dog barking somewhere).
MacGuffin has a tagging system, to help readers curate content themselves. Anyone can add tags to anyone else’s poem to describe it, or add it to a reading list. This means that, not only can you search for content thematically (e.g. try typing the tag #ice into the search bar, to return a list of stories and poems with that tag), but you can make a playlist (rather like how people used to make mix-tapes for friends); just tag several poems with a unique tag to create a list.
Comma hope it’ll be a useful resource for authors who want to promote their short story collection. You can upload a sample story (we don’t ask for exclusivity) and link it back to point-of-sale, where readers can buy the book.
The website’s here. Android and iOS Apps to follow