Building and Changing

On the heels of last week’s update that Free Fiction Friday is being resumed on October 14th, 2022 (this Friday), the idea came to list out a number of things needed to happen on my site and writing life in general.

Over a year ago (can’t remember when at this point), I updated the site with a new theme. I also decided to make a static landing page rather than the main page being a blog-roll. Not having an idea of what I wanted to do, I left it up as “Loading… Please Stand By” with some over verbiage after that. Honestly, if I updated it within a month of putting that up, it would not be so bad. It is going on a year or longer, though. A blog-roll would have been better.

There’s a menu bar, at least.

The lingering home page exemplified the state of my site though. Here I am updating it more, putting up more regular content, and yet the site remains in this sorry state.

Then there’s the outside things. There’s the Kindle Vella experiment of The Colton Skyward Chronicles. Also book availability for my 4 current pieces — with only Gravity being available in wide distribution.

Needless to say, there’s a lot of work to do. So I figured that it is time for an update in many ways, and making a post is a good way to hold myself accountable in a way. Here it goes:

To start, after much deliberation, I decided that I am going to yank “The Colton Skyward Chronicles” from Vella. As fun and exciting a platform as Vella seems, there’s a lot about it that I ultimately don’t like — at least not for this story. There might be a project I find that I want to try out on there later, but Colton Skyward is not it. Whether I am going to publish that story as a book or make it a feature in FFF remains to be seen.

Given the above, I am choosing to focus my attention on two things: my site and my books. Again, this is for now. As I said in the previous update post announcing my bringing FFF back, this site is a great spot to make my own. It will serve me better overall than any social media site or another platform such as Patreon for example. Playing around with other platforms then is simply too much. Family and work still take most of my attention, so what is leftover to work on the writing business is limited, meaning that it is better for me to focus on what is doable rather than what might be popular. Meaning no BookTok for me!

Next, I am getting my front or landing page fixed. For the near-term, this means that the page is back to a blog-roll, which is already done. Long term, I am working through some ideas on how the landing page will look. If I find some ideas I like, then the page will get updated.

Then there’s the book pages. They are all in a sad state. For one, it only covers 3 of the 4 books I have out right now. Besides that, it is in need of a major update with links and all. That won’t happen until I get all books set to wide distribution — meaning not exclusively at Amazon. So that begins the list of things to do outside of this site.

Which really is that: getting the books to wide distribution.

Oh, and publishing stuff…

Another update worth noting is that I should be close to finally getting the next poetry collection out that was promised June 23rd of this year. It took me a lot longer than I anticipated. Rather than go alphabetical with the poems, I was trying to have them flow — and where they didn’t flow, I was flinging around randomly and seeing what works. It’s tedious and in ways largely unnecessary other than to satisfy me. Anyway, the title is:

varied degrees of darkness

It is after a line in my poem “Hide”, which is included in the collection. The other delay is that I’ve slowly added a few more to the collection, too. And I’m still toying with adding about 10 or so haikus to it as well. But we’ll see.

Then, I made a promise to my son that I would get the final revision completed of a middle-grade book I wrote back years ago while he was still in elementary school called “Soar”. He and a couple of his friends beta-read it for me, but I never applied the suggestions. The plan is to revise it again while my son works on some of the illustrations (he’s a pretty skilled artist — especially for his age). Once I think it’s ready, I should push it out soon after.

There’s also my novella “Antlers” that I’ve sat on. It’s in the revision stage. I am adding a bit to it to make sure it flows properly. We’ll see when that comes out. I wouldn’t plan on this year, but that remains up in the air.

Beyond that, I’m trying to keep up with writing every day. So far I’ve gotten back on a streak of 12 days hitting my minimum word count goals. One day at a time though.
That’s enough nonsensical rambling from me for today. Next Monday I’ll resume the “Why I am Failing as a Writer” series with part 6. See you then!


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