Wednesday, June 26, 2013

End of the Serial, New Direction

The Serial is Over

For those who didn't pay attention to Sunday's post... nobody objected to the idea of dropping the serial from this blog.  So it's done.  I may pick it up again in the fall, or I might just write it as a book.  (And with either one, I might significantly revise aspects of it...)

So What's Next?

This blog is going back to its original concept, with on exception -- I won't be posting every day.  I'll be re-joining ROW80, and posting twice a week, Wednesdays and Sundays.  Some of these posts will just be updates, some will be the usual thoughts and opinions about writing, art and life.  My goal, just now, is to stick to JUST those two posts a week until fall, and then maybe add "Friday Favorites" reviews back.

The 2.5 Year Learning Experience

I started this blog almost four years ago.  The original idea was just to report my daily writing progress as a public "writing dare."  Because reporting word counts is boring, the blog evolved into a writing blog.

But then Indie Publishing came along.  The world changed.  And suddenly the business of publishing wasn't a bad-fit business model that I had to tolerate because that's how it worked. Suddenly everything I really loved to do -- not just writing but design and publishing and business and marketing and online stuff -- was available to me.  In spades.

So for the past two years and some, this blog has kinda been my sandbox, where I play and learn and experiment.  I transformed it a number of times, upgrading the content, publishing more actual fiction, and fewer posts about writing fiction.

The thing is, most of those transformations were aimed at being a marketing tool -- turning this into a blog for readers rather than writers.  And I learned a lot and had a lot of fun... but it wasn't for real because I don't have the body of work to back it up.  It was play.  And I've learned all I'm going to learn from playing pretend.

I've bee slaloming around the sandbox in overdrive, spinning and doing wheelies.  And I haven't had the time and energy to do the work that I was practicing for.


It's time to quit screwing around and shift back down into a working gear.  Something that can bear a load.

A Round of Words in 80 Days Round 3 for 2013 starts Monday.  Sunday will be the start up post.  I'll post then about my goals and what I'm doing.  I'll likely post more about the Plotting Game on Wednesday.

See you in the funny papers.


Tanja said...

I used to do ROW80 a year or so ago... since then I stopped blogging but I'm now considering to start again. I'm torn though :S

I think one of my problems is that I can't figure out why I want to blog. Is it for my own amusement? Accountability? Attract readers? Communicate with writers?

The Daring Novelist said...

My advice is: if all you want to blog for is to meet the requirements of ROW80, then that's exactly what you should do. It's personal blog for your writer pals. This may be attractive to others, but don't start catering to that (as I did).

You don't want to struggle with conflicting purposes to a blog. You can always start a separate blog for other things, if you need to. Later.

That's probably the biggest lesson I've learned. Don't try to piggy back the traffic/success you've earned on one purpose into a new one. Just start over on that if you need to. Any success you have from one thing will connect up anyway.

The Daring Novelist said...

One other thought:

I don't have great data to back this up, but the tentative lesson I also take from this experiment in blogging is that interesting posts about writing for writers does seem to sell more books than posting fiction.

I might talk about this in more detail in a blog post later -- but readers and writers seem to want to know about your struggles, and they want to know about how things work. They like reviews, and analysis and updates way more than you'd think.

And it makes you a person, so they're curoius about your work too. A story keeps you more anonymous in their minds, and it doesn't necessarily drive them to seek more of your stories.

Strange but true.

Tanja said...

You're right, I don't have to get it right or make the blog serve every purpose I can think of. I'll be joining Row80 and work on keeping the blog for me and my writer friends.

I've been contemplating writing short fiction to post on my website for free but honestly, I'm not sure it's worth the effort. Might be better to just concentrate on stuff that *fingers crossed* might bring in some money.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Enjoying your thoughts here, Camille. I've enjoyed your blog, too, but I totally agree with you that you'll have more time if you scale back on the blog and pour more time into your fiction.

It's cool that the self-pub revolution plays into your talents so much!