Another year is done and I appear to be healing. The neurological symptoms are mainly over, though it was a process to get back to working on things. The joints remain damaged and one of my knees doesn’t straighten. I’m always going to be fragile compared to how I was, but I appear to be broadly healthy (outside of the obvious mobility problems).
I took a break in summer to just do whatever came to mind. I read several novels, did some random mesh work for Second Life (I redid my cake shop) and wrote a short story.
The most difficult thing has been that I’ve always had executive dysfunction. I’m now faced with a list of things I should have been doing over the last few years, which makes it difficult to pick things and work on them. As such, I’m making no claim of doing anything in a sensible order or to a certain deadline.
Book sales were down last year. I’m several years behind releasing a new project and that’s been hurting sales. Unfortunately, knowing this creates a lot of pressure, which is not the best way to actually get a big project finished. I closed my Patreon, so I don’t have that as a backup either, but that does lead on to the next thing.
Some people have asked how to throw money at me and the next novel is some time away. So, I had the idea of publishing some single short stories available for $0.99. I’d aim for longer shorts (but shorter than novelette) and include some story notes at the end. That means even though some might be available elsewhere, or will be in the future, the story notes will remain a unique feature of the singles.
It didn’t go that well when I published a novelette in the past, but I recognise that times have changed. The average price of a self-published novel has gone up, making the shorts seem less expensive in comparison. Patreon has also popularised the idea of paying a dollar per thing (which is often a dollar per short story for a writer).
Anyway, if this interests you, let me know.
I took down a lot of videos, so that I could edit them and reupload. This has been a great learning experience. I even managed to get usable audio on two videos where I had to cut it completely before. This isn’t the path to success or anything like that, but I don’t have the time or strength to really go for the channel. So I’m getting my backlist of videos as strong as possible.
I did make a few new videos. Some were done using a phone to film, which is easier for me to handle. As a result of this, I also started a TikTok account, where I’ve uploaded some of the vertical videos I did for YouTube. I can’t really use TikTok as it’s not accessible, but I can upload stuff there for people who prefer it over YouTube Shorts.
A big issue has been the demise of Twitter. I’m not leaving anytime soon, but it’s harder to be seen and to talk to people. I’ve tried various alternatives, but ended up only really using the two I already had: Tumblr and Reddit. Neither of those is really a replacement for the casual microblogging experience.
In terms of my social life, I’m doing well with Second Life. I have friends there. I have lots of stuff to do. Given that I can’t go out and do all the stuff I used to do, I’ve ended up doing more in Second Life. I’ve taken up a breedable cat game (KittyCats), expanded my shop land a bit, and hope to get into more building things this year.
In terms of chatting to other writers and the business side of things, everyone leaving for social networks I hate is obviously a problem. I’m not sure even sure if anyone will even see this blog post. It also ended my livetweeting of the Alien / Predator films, but at least I ended on a high with Alien vs. Predator, which I really enjoyed.
My health has improved a lot, other than continuing joint issues and reduced mobility. I’m hoping to publish a few shorts to get a little more money as I work on the next big writing project. I’m polishing videos and reuploading them on YouTube and TikTok. Twitter is dying, but I’m still there for now.