Sunday, December 7, 2008

Keegan's Master Plan for 2009

If you've been following the Google situation ... in which Keegan's page ranking has been zeroed out due to an incredible f**k-up in the algorithms ... you'll be looking for an update. The story so far, in a thimble, is that this blog has been caught in the snare set to trap "pay per post" bloggers. 100,000 ppp bloggers have had their PR set to zero ... and about half a million more innocent blogs (of which this is one!) will probably also have abeen relegated to page 9,547 of the search engine results, since the snare catches the guilty and the innocent alike, so long as they met the right criteria ... and this blog does.

The upshot of this is, The World According to Mel is like that island in Pirates of the Caribbean: it can only be found by people who already know where it is! For the full story, see this:

The blog is obviously on the skids, because no one can invest this much writing in something which Google is determined to strangle out of existence! Is it unfair? Yes, it is. Am I madder than hell? Yes, I am. Am I going to chuck in the towel? No, I'm not!

I've been having ideas for new blogs and sites since I discovered what's going on between Keegan and The Goog. And if you tuned in a few days ago, you'd have seen this post:

Somehow (and I can't even remember how) I stumbled into the fascinating world of the digital novel. And I'm intrigued. I can't resist doing this.

I have a stack of novels about three feet thick (no exaggeration. If you printed them out in paperback form, they would occupy 36 inches of bookshelf), and no way of publishing them between covers anytime soon. But ... what if they were uploaded, chapter by chapter, to a blog? What if you parked advertising on the blog? What if you had about a thousand people reading each FREE daily installment of the unfolding epic adventure?! What if even a few people gave you a click on a $1 donation button? The Internet being what it is (vast beyond the wildest dreams of anyone barring a galactic astronomer or your actual cosmologist), there should be an unspeakably massive number of readers looking for a good-quality freebie, and even a small percentage of those readers, at $1 per click, will pay my bills.

There are 1,000 page novels with titles like BLOOD AND FIRE (vampyre), and THE EYES OF NIGHT (historical fantasy), and LEGENDS (tales of elder Atlantis) and DRAGON OF BRITONS (Arthurian fantasy), and POWER AND MAGICKS (after the holocaust SF), and CRYSTAL GENESIS (future fantasy), and THE KINDGOM OF SUMMER (more fantasy).

Where the hell do all these novels come from? I've been writing for over 30 years, folks. GMP and Millivres managed to publish the grand total of 8 books over 12 of those years. DreamCraft have done another 14 over the last 8 years, as well as reprinting many (though not all) of the original novels.

Uh ... what do you think I've been doing for thirty years?! New writers are inclined to write a book and then work like hell to sell it, and they don't write anything else till they sell the first one. This is a big mistake -- and a bad one. Firstly, it might take you several novels' worth of writing to develop a style, and an integrity in your editing, which makes you publishable in the first place! Then, practise makes perfect. If you write one novel and then stop ... your chances of becoming a working, self-supporting writer, just went down like a brick.

I always wrote about five times more than could ever be published. Some of my earlier stuff was read in "limited release" editions, and various versions of things were read by small(ish) groups a long, long time ago (like, 25 years ago).

So there's an ocean of gay fiction a la Keegan to be tapped into, and I'm very, very fascinated to give it a shot.

Also, thanks to the sheer audacity of Aricia Gavriel, I now know that you can rip Blogger templates apart and play tunes on their innards. Mind you, I, myself, don't know how, but have a look at this:

And I know for a fact where AG had it done. Why did I never think to go whining to DreamCraft and have Jade drag out some magic wand and wave it over this blog? Good gods, I'm getting slow.

So -- when the big fiction blogs start running in the new year, you'll be seeing some page designs that are literally out of this world.

Incidentally, AG is only just floating this new blog. I think it has something like two proper posts up at the time of this writing, but I'll be watching it closely ... not (only) to see what she says about my stuff, but because I quite agree with the premise of the blog: there were some fantastic books 20 - 40 years ago, and they're being forgotten, or at least overlooked, in the avalanche of gay fiction which is issuing from the ebook and online publishers. Companies like alibris, Amazon and eBay are treasure troves of secondhand gay books (including mine), and the reader's biggest challenge is just to know what they are, where they are, what they're about, what to buy. AG: you've chosen a great niche ... now, let's see what you can make of it, kiddo.

Me? I'm heading off into uncharted waters in 2009. The unthinkably vast fiction blogs ... stories in which you can lose yourself for months at a time, as they appear post by post.

You've got to be fascinated.

Ciao for now,

No comments:

Post a Comment