Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas, 2009!

May your holidays be filled with peace and joy;
may the world be a little less dangerous and painful to live in;
and may the New Year bring a whole lot of dreams come true...
Merry Christmas ... Merrie Yuletide! ... to all,

Cheers, Mel (on Christmas morning).

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Jarrat and Stone on Christmas Eve...

It's Christmas Eve here, but I could swear it was Christmas morning. I just received one of the best presents I ever had, and better yet, it's something I can share with you. It's this:

They came through as attachments on an email about 90 minutes ago ... and I'm floored. I am seriously still on the deck, wondering what hit me. These characters just came to life -- they just walked out of my imagination and onto the screen, as surely as if a movie were being made! Jarrat and Stone have become real, live entities.
You can see the original blog post where they appeared here, and also the excerpt from EQUINOX which they were used to illustrate, here. (I've chosen an excerpt from each of the 27 titles on my backlist, and I'm putting up 2 or 3 a week. I have half a dozen up now -- Jade put up a couple of them for me, in particular those which are ... illustrated. Like this. Jade: "thank you" is too simple a thing to say, but if there's better words, I haven't learned them!
Christmas Eve is warm, humid; the overcast is breaking up at last -- it actually rained last night! We were supposed to get a storm, but if it broke, I didn't see it. Christmas is upon us, so...
Merry Christmas to all! May the season be happy, safe, and one to remember!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

ICE WIND AND FIRE: the paperback and the black hole

A swift update on the ICE, WIND AND FIRE situation:

We've passed the "delivery deadline" for the proof, and DreamCraft has officially categorized it as DBU -- Down Black Hole. It's been too long since it was shipped to hold out much, if any, optimism that it'll show up.

The proof has been reordered. Allow 14 days minimum for it to be delivered here, so it can be eyeballed and given the OK, and cleared for sale.

Alas, this puts us right in the middle of the holidays, so it looks like the paperback launch of IWF will have to be put back into January, 2010.

Rats. You can get it as an ebook, but ... what can I tell you? US Mails and/or Australia Post strike again.

In the meantime, here's some eye-candy, guy-candy, to put the smile back on your face:

...and it would be fair to say, in all sincerity, that I am so gobsmacked, my bog has never been so smacked. Want more: you need to be on Jade's Adventures in 3D. There's a new digital fantasy every day -- makes me feel like I'm stuck in reverse! I have GOT to get my creative act in gear in 2010. I'm supposed to be a writer, not a website administrator ... right?!

NARC ... Hellgate, The Swordsman, the Vampyre, all need to be finished. Okay: deep breath. The work starts (I said starts!) in January.

Bear with me...



Monday, December 14, 2009

FREE ONLINE GAY FICTION! (A post for the Google 'bot)

FREE ONLINE GAY FICTION! Get your free gay stories online --

In all seriousness, folks. I'm trying to attract the attention of the Google Bot. This post is about search engines, and getting properly listed by them. So, once again, being pellucidly clear:


Well -- they're GAY, they're FREE, and they're STORIES, right?

As in,

  • not straight, bent, counter-het, curvy;
  • not charged for; without cost; sans price; gratis;
  • fiction, as in ... well, as in fiction. You know, stories, not documentaries or text books. In other words, interesting stuff not likely to serve as a sleeping pill.

Therefore, GAY FICTION, which is FREE, and on the Internet. Online. Downloadable. To be downloaded without payment.

(Have I jammed in enough keywords yet? You see, Google doesn't read the sense of anything you're saying. You could be William Shakespeare; Google wouldn't care. You could be trying to get the Gettysburg Address crawled, indexed and on Page One -- Google would curl its lip. You see, the 'bot reads something nasty called keyword density. It also recognizes when words are embiggened and emboldened, and made into headlines, like this:


So, having said all that (and not forgetting to speak the 'bot's language and shove in some more associated keywords along the way, such as GLBT, and Manlove, and M/M, and Gay readers, Gay Books and GLBT publishing) where do you actually get the aforementioned (here comes the keyword again Free Gay Online Fiction ...?

This rather idiotic post is intended solely to wave a red flag at Google because I'm currently beating my brains out to launch a new blog: -- ALL GAY ROMANCE.

And if this post doesn't get Google's attention, and get the URL in front of you -- YOU, the surfer who is actually looking for (here it comes again) FREE GAY ONLINE STORIES, well, I give up. It's all about keyword density, you understand ... meaning, you only need to put in just enough semi-coherent babble between the keywords to get Google to literally count the words and divide by keywords which its peanut-sized intellect can understand. "Free gay fiction online" is a keyword. "Squashed banana" is not a keyword. However, if you put in too much semi-coherent babble between the keywords, Google can't understand what your page is about...

This next, from Google's perspective, would be the perfect paragraph:

FREE GAY ONLINE FICTION teddy bear's picnic and the pet dragon bit off Tigger's head, so Captain Ron had to glue it back on, and FREE ONLINE GAY FICTION when the aliens brought back Elvis, who'd been run over by Mad Max's new lawnmower, but FREE ONLINE GAY FICTION would be the last thing Uncle Joe expected when he tore up the old carpet to polish the floor and discovered FREE ONLINE GAY FICTION in the trunk of Eddie's rusted-up old Ford, but he'd been dead for three days before FREE ONLINE DAY FICTION.

That' to Google, makes perfect sense. It's not the beauty of the language; it's not the wisdom of the content, nor the harmony of the prose, the artistry of the literature. It's the KEYWORD DENSITY.

And according to the rules, I have to say the keyword one more time, and include a link to the pertinent subject matter at the end of the page. So here we go:

FREE ONLINE GAY FICTION ... available (free) here.

There. Let's see Google misunderstand this!

Sorry. I promise to speak English next time, and make sense to humans.



Thursday, December 10, 2009

New blog launching ... new cover art inspiring me!

Two items I *must* blog about today -- though I know I haven't blogged in a loooong time; too busy, folks; only so many hours in a day!

But -- two things to blog about today!

GLBT Bookshelf has just launched its fiction wing ... free gay fiction, online, glbt romance in any of its thousands of permutations: ALL GAY ROMANCE is launching at this time. There's quite a nice range of fiction online even now, and it's very early days as yet. A good time is being had by all, and we hope readers will soon find the site, bookmark is, and return often.

The other piece of news is personal: I just received the cover proof for my next-up novel, and to say that I'm thrilled to bits is a terrible understatement:

Will you take a look at that! It's by Jade ... who else?! ... and it was done in the new 3D art prog to which I intriduced the artist back in August. I'm still trying to figure out my specular from my ambient --! Jade, meanwhile, is doing stuff like this:

Is that amazing, or what? One of the best things about this is that Jade actually tells you how to do this stuff ... not in any great detail, of course, because these are not tutorials. But enough to point me in the right direction, and give me have a clue about where the tools are!

And I guess, now that the cover art for MINDSPACE is done and waiting for me, I better get on and finish the story! It's about 75% done, I just need to find the time to hammer out the rest of it and then send it over to DreamCraft for the edit and proof phase ... and somewhere along the line, maybe I'll find the time to blog again!