Thursday, April 16, 2009

About the blog: site suggestions, lurkers and guidelines

Hi all,

I was hoping we could take a break today to talk about the blog abit. Again, I have to say how grateful I am that other people are here and participating in this! I would like to make this a site that works for everyone.

First, I'm very open to suggestions about how to make this site really fun and interactive. Allowing Ms. Fettleston to host a tea, and trying a group story are experiments. You can let me know if it worked for you, and if you have other ideas, I would really welcome them. If you don't want to post them, I'm always open to e-mails. My address is on the side.

Any suggestions at all about the site would be welcome.

Second, I am going to post a set of guidelines this weekend. Nothing fancy, just the basics. I don't like having to single anyone out, and I think that might help avoid any hard feelings. I really don't want people to feel badly here in any way, either because they accidentally stepped over my artifical line, or because someone else did.

Lastly, I debated about letting people know this, because there can be something fun about a site that feels intimate. But I think many people would want to know, so I will tell you we have a bunch of lurkers. Maybe 50-60 people daily who are reading the site, but not posting. Sometimes more.

That's cool. People may be lurking because they are just reading for entertainment, or maybe feeling too shy to post. I will say that this is a good place to post for shy people, because no one has to know who you are! Also, I will never get a site counter that tells me who you are. That totally defeats the point of this site.

Okay, I've rambled on. Thanks again for being here, and any suggestions again would be very welcome!


DESTINY said...

Why make suggestions? It will happen as it is meant to happen.


Actually, I do have one suggestion. I wish you would serve ice cream. I like ice cream.

Bo said...

There really should be more sex around here, but I bet you knew I would say that.

Kalila said...

Please ignore Bo, everyone.

I've talked to the other band members, and to Ricky, and we all feel kind of bad that we're so much trouble. We'd like to make it up to you by inviting everyone to one of our shows. Ricky is checking which of our venues will allow us to put you all on the guest list, and I'll let you know.

Aidan said...

I'm cool with all that.

Anonymous said...


I wouldn't mind some ice cream.

I wouldn't mind talking with more girls here.


Rick Daley said...

First off, we can combine the sex and ice cream for some wicked cool fun.

Second, I liked yesterday's create a story. It was a deviation from my typical comments here, but it was fun.

Bo said...

Sex and ice cream sounds kinky. I'm in!

Nevin said...

I'll just take ice cream, thanks. Is it organic? I hope so. It's very important that we support sustainable, hormone-free, pesticide-free agriculture.

Anonymous said...

"sustainable, hormone-free, pesticide-free agriculture"

is it just me, or does that sound sexy?

Mira said...

Okay. Thanks. These are helpful so far.

Provide ice cream and sex.



Mira said...

Rick, I'm glad you liked the group story.

I thought that was fun too, although I'm so caught up at Nathan's with the query, I didn't participate myself as much as I wanted.

Kalila, I'm thrilled to hear about the concert. Can't wait.

Christine H said...

I have been very busy at Nathan's with queries also, despite my best intentions to stay off the Internet (or at least limit it) for a while.

But... I think you guys should tone down the sex talk. I think maybe that's what Mira might be hinting at in today's post. I realize we have some very.. erm... excitable characters here, but... can't you think of ANYTHING else to talk about?

Lurkers, come out! We need more characters!!!

I'm thinking about hosting a party, too, but I don't know when.

Word verification: Skint. Okay, now that sounds like a sexy word! Groan! "He was skint in skin-tight jeans." Even Blogger is against me.

Pure fiction said...

I love the site and really enjoyed taking part in creating the story -how about similar future posts, limiting entries to a genre once a week or something, like thriller, romance, fantasy, etc?

Anonymous said...

I'm one of the lurkers, partially delurking for a moment.

I'm afraid I don't have time to add these "assignments" to my daily writing schedule, plus I'm not totally comfortable with posting the mumblings of contracted characters online. However, I find the submissions fascinating and am considering using this forum to experiment with some new characters/ideas down the road. For now, though, I'm going to continue to play around the edges.

Ann (bunnygirl) said...

Posting as myself for once...

How about weekly pictures, quotes, and words that our characters could comment on? Or maybe a weekly random headline from the news? You could have a schedule of prompts, ie: Monday is always picture day, Tuesday is quote day, or whatever, and then have open discussion and virtual parties on weekends.

Just brainstroming here.

Andre Vienne said...

It seems pretty good so far, to me. I probably won't participate in some of the more involved things due to my growing list of things that are sliding in from nowhere to grab me, but hey. Seems to be cool for most everybody.

Mira said...

Christine - I would LOVE if you would host a party. Let me know.

Parties, concerts, sounds fun.

Actually, I have no personal problem with the sex talk, as long as it doesn't get too graphic (then I'd have to apply to make this an adult site.) I think it's amusing, and integral to some characters.

I'm curious how other people might feel, though.

Christine - I was hinting about the fact that I singled someone out a few days ago and asked them to stop doing something. I hated doing that.

Mira said...

Anon, that's totally cool. Nice to meet you. Would love meeting some of your new characters in the future. :-)

Ann, that's what I was thinking - having certain prompts for certain days. And I love the idea of posting pictures or quotes. That hadn't occured to me. Thanks!

Andre - thanks. I thoroughly enjoy reading posts. Love having you here.

Aidan said...

I'm cool with the sex talk. I also really like ice cream--chocolate chip.

It's raining here today. It's a good day for a museum, but we have to go out to a club tonight and check out this weird demon clique hanging around there. They sound pretty dangerous.

So I have to take a nap.

Charlene said...

Ice cream and sex
...heh, heh.

Things are good as far as I can see. Saturday's tea party was a nice break from all the chaos and running, all I usually get to see are bars and car interiors; it'd be nice to hang out at some other places too.

Ann's idea sounds good.


Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure skint means broke across the pond. Pretty sure, not positive. Blogger isn't against you.

Anonymous said...

Hi. I lurk sometimes too. Actually, I have had one character post and that was fun.
Right now I'm feeling sad and shy.
I just finished my novel -eighteen months of work.
And then I just experienced my first two agent rejections.
Ouch ouch ouch!

When I am feeling less stupid and vulnerable, I will post again.

In the meantime, I am a friendly lurker.

My word verification is: pearypo

Elaine 'still writing' Smith said...

To Christine H

I've just experienced a very weird feeling and it had nothing to do with ice-cream or the other thing either.

I haven't laughed (come to think of it I haven't smiled) in a very long time; there hasn't been much to smile about... but the idea of skint meaning like boys-in-tight-jeans just creased me up.
I'm going to go around to Egg's to try out my new word on him!


Uncle Will says to say sorry. Apparently, he forgot to sign his name when he posted yesterday.

Ricky said...

Anonymous, don't get discouraged about your book. I'm a talent manager, not a literary agent, but in some ways our jobs are similar. Who we take on as a client is subject to a lot of factors and talent is not really one of them.

It's nice if we find someone talented, but basic competence and professionalism are enough if we think there's a market for your work and if we think we can do a good job promoting you in that market.

In other words, creating literature and music may be art, but selling it is business. If you're trying to sell your book, the rejections might have nothing to do with your art and everything to do with market factors. A good crit group can help you understand which problem you've got and if there's an easy solution.

Of course, if you're a djinn like Kalila, you can just put some poor chump's blood and signature on a contract and threaten them with demon court if they don't make you famous. That's what she did to me. I'm sure she would tell you that it's the easiest way to go about it, too.

Anonymous said...

Dear Ricky,
Wow, thanks.

Really. tough. those. rejections.

My confidence went way way down to zero-ba-zero.

Oh gads, I am a skinless whinnie with even word verifications made just for Winnie the Pooh (and me).

But, seriously, thanks for the pep talk.

I was just crushed.

Somehow, I thought they would come running, ringing their bells, saying, here comes the next Terry Pratchett!

(hiding behind desk now.)

Yes, perhaps I'll come out and play with you guys, anyway.

Kalila said...

Uh, Ricky? You asked for that contract, remember? You dumped me from a perfectly decent lamp for no good reason, then acted like you had done me some kind of favor and deserved a reward.

Folks, all he said was that he wanted to manage a "really good band." He didn't say it had to be a human band, so don't waste your pity on him.

Anonymous said...

One of my characters (Keep in mind

that I've had TWO rejections already

today) is a semi-human singer in a

band. She's an angsty punk rocker,


Perhaps I should introduce you.

(She has out of this world vocals.)

Kalila said...


Vic, the vampire who comes around here sometimes, is our lead vocalist. I play guitar. I sing a little, of course, because we all have to, but it's really not my thing.

Since you say your vocalist is only half-human, the guys in my band probably wouldn't see her as food. Ricky has us booked at Club Nostradamus tonight, so tell her to drop by. We can talk between sets, and if the guys are okay with it, maybe she can sit in on a song or two.

Or just tell her to come here and say hello. This is a safe place. Sort of. It is for me, at any rate.

Aidan said...

My writer had a rejection today. You're in good company.

Christine H said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Christine H said...

I would LOVE to have a rejection because it would mean that I actually FINISHED something and SUBMITTED it somewhere!

Oh my GOD you guys are so WAY AHEAD of me.

Be Proud of Your Rejections... They Prove You're a Writer!!!!

(P.S. I googled skint - it does mean "broke.")

(P.P.S. Mira - as a teacher I can say that sometimes it is appropriate to mention a "word to the wise." I don't think you should feel bad. I'm just glad you weren't upset with anything I did!)

(Word verification: sperworm. Is it just me? I think Blogger has a dirty mind!)

Candy said...

Sorry about the rejections. When my person gets one she doesn't speak to me for days sometimes. Poor Anonymous, and Aiden. But two in one day is really awful Makes you want to go to bed and hide under the covers, doesn't it.
Some agent once said to just keep trying, somewhere there is someone who will want your work.

Christine H said...

Destiny, could you PLEASE match Bo up with some kind of sex goddess... then they two of them can just go at it for eternity somewhere else.

Is Venus busy?

Mira said...

My. My head is going in circles from all the queries at Nathan's. I finally finished.


Now I can focus more here.

Christine, I can't imagine not liking anything you did!

Word to the wise is good, I'll keep that in mind. :-)

Candy, you're such a sweetheart.

Anon, please do come out and play with us. I bet it would build your confidence. Besides, writer's need community because it's so tough out there.

I agree with Christine, getting a letter of rejection from an agent, means you've arrived! Congratulations, it's like a rite of passage! I have a friend who is making a wall of honor with them. :-)

Mira said...


Btw, did you know that J.K. Rowling was turned down by a hundred agents before finding a small publishing press to start her first book?

I just read that on Nathan's blog today.

I don't know if you've heard of her, but she went on to be the richest woman in England.

Oh. And she published a bunch of books that were pretty popular, too.

Mira said...

Pure Fiction,

I'm so sorry I didn't respond earlier. I'm glad you had fun with the story. Cool. Making it a particular genre is a great idea!


Christine H said...

Mira - I was afraid someone may have complained about my Easter exuberance.

Mira said...

Goodness no, Christine. I think people had fun.

I'm totally looking forward to the concert.

DESTINY said...

Christine, you have spoken to me.

I reply.

Bo would be unhappy with just one sex goddess. He needs many. As in many, many, many, many.

It is his DESTINY.