For months now, I’ve been trying to figure out something I could do with this blog. I wrote up one convention report… and then I still couldn’t figure out anything for several months, at which point I came out with another convention report. Most likely, my next post will also be a convention report, as Capital Con is lingering just around the corner. (Of note: I am scheduled to appear on a panel at Capital Con. My first time as a panelist since self-publishing my first book, and my first at an science fiction convention (though I used to regularly do fanfic panels at local anime conventions, including multiple Katsucons, Otakons, and the very first Nekocon). I was hoping to have a book or two to release during this period, but I’m way behind on them. And, really, I don’t think you want to read me talking about how “I wrote another 376 words today! I’m that much closer to finishing things off” every day. Trying to devote more time towards my books to complete “In Forgery Divided” has also contributed to my lack of blog posts.
But those are not the only reason this blog is so sparse. I have no desire to use this blog just for convention reports and book releases, but so far I haven’t really come up with any content that seems worth posting to a blog.
Excerpts for upcoming titles? Um… maybe some day, in the run-up to publication, but I’m not ready to start those, yet. Advice on writing? Well, maybe sometimes, but it seems like half the author blogs do that — I want to be a little more unique than that. I love getting reviews, but I’m not comfortable writing them myself (my review style is to look for and write about what’s wrong. Now, I only do this for things that I like enough to feel like commenting on, but I’ve known people who took things wrong when I did that).
I do have some ideas for things to post, but most of what I can think of only really works once this blog has at least a small following. That makes these ideas catch-22s: I can’t write these blog posts until I build an audience, but I can’t build an audience without having more blog posts.
Well, for the past few days I’ve been brainstorming to try and figure out something to add as content. So far I’ve come up with the following ideas:
1. A blog series on quirky things I’ve researched for a book… and never used. I would avoid mentioning those sorts of things that might get you put on some sort of watch list, but instead concentrate (at least initially) on “things you wouldn’t think you needed to research until you need them,” I would include details about why I was looking for this bit of research, how I went about it, when I gave up on it, and why I ultimately decided not to use it… or at least, why I’ve decided not to use it so far.
2. A discussion of the software that I use to publish a book. This would include programs like Adobe InDesign, Microsoft Word, Scrivener, the (rumored defunct, but I’ve seen a release since hearing that rumor) freeware project Sigil, the Hemingway App, and more.
3. A very few specific writing posts on certain things (such as a why and how for House Style Guides for the self-publisher… which might also include a small diatribe on the Chicago Manual of Style. Though most of what I’d say on the later has already been said by CJ Cherryh here).
4. Once I’ve built up a few posts on other topics, I might offer some author interviews (cross-promotion! A subject I will probably mention at my Capital Con panel, among a dozen or so other things). And, of course, I will continue to talk about conventions I attend… and, hopefully soon, I will actually get around to finishing those two books in my pipeline, and can post about them as well.