Always Asking Questions

The shingles are mostly gone now minus some scarring (it looks like I was shot in the ribs with a shotgun), so of course my body decides it’s time to get sick. This would be amusing if not for the amount of writing time I missed in January.

I’m just wondering… how many of you here come here through Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram? How many actually follow me using wordpress and the email following? I can see how many people come here daily, and where they were referred from, but I’m just curious because sometimes wordpress gets a little wonky about where people come from when finding this site. I also ask because I tried doing a newsletter (twice now) but every time I get more follow-through and action on my website than I do on my email newsletter.

You see, I’ve been reading a lot lately on how to build up a larger audience, and every single one of them say to build an email newsletter. I’ve never had good luck with those, historically speaking. I hear some people have 20,000 subscribers to their newsletters. I haven’t gotten that many here on a single day (or month, for that matter…) so it makes me curious. I tried the freebie giveaway (two short stories were offered as freebies for signing up) and… almost nobody signed up. Meanwhile, everybody else who comes here loyally are just sort of drifting in the breeze. I apologize for that.

See, I have a bit of a problem. I treat my writing as a full-time job with dedicated hours, but my website here is more of a hobby. While tempting to do nothing but try to sell you my books through here, I prefer to just talk about other stuff sometimes. I don’t want to be “that guy”. We all know “that guy” and the last thing I want people to do is to say “Oh boy, not again…” whenever they see me update the blog.

I’ve considered talking politics a few times but frankly, politics are insane right now and I don’t see it getting better. I’d talk sports but I really don’t follow them much anymore. I used to follow baseball back when I played, but now I’m just sort of “blah” about it. When I was coaching basketball I followed the local basketball scene (four high schools in an area of less than 15,000 people means there are some intense rivalries) but once I stopped, it just became less important.

I still play videogames and I’m tempted to start streaming again, either on YouTube or Twitch.TV. I have a channel already up on both. I just need to decide on a streaming schedule and what games to play. I already have a lot of PC games I could stream, though none of them are the typical player versus player (PvP, parents… I’m here to help!) that are immensely popular. I’m more of a tactical player, meaning I don’t have the twitchy reflexes required for games like CS:GO and CoD. I’d probably be good at DOTA if I ever bothered to learn the game. If I did get back into streaming, I’d probably write for a 10 hour day like normal, then stream for 2-3 hours a night. I don’t know if that would interest people or not. If I get a second monitor for the gaming PC I could follow chat while I stream and answer questions. Of course, I should upgrade that computer to Windows 10 eventually. That way OBS would work better for me.

Yeah, I’m rambling a bit… sorry.

Right now my publisher, Chris Kennedy Publishing, is having an informal contest. Okay, it’s really just bragging rights between #TeamJJ (myself and coauthor Jamie Ibson, aka Team Youngsters) and #TeamKQ (Kevin Ikenberry and Quincy Allen, aka Team Oldhawks). The four of us have written about one character, Hr’ent, who is a Peacemaker (think wild west sheriff but in space) in the Four Horsemen universe. Mine and Jamie’s book, though it was released second, is chronologically first (GUNBOAT DIPLOMACY) and set immediately before theirs, titled ENFORCER. Both of us are around 45 reviews, and CKP decided that whoever gets to 50 reviews on Amazon first will be bought a round of drinks by the losers at an upcoming convention. Though GUNBOAT DIPLOMACY came out 5 weeks after ENFORCER, they’re only ahead of us by two, with the score 45-43.

I don’t know about you but with the amount of people who follow me on here, Twitter, and Instagram, we should be dominating. It’s all in good fun, mind you, but then again, I hate to lose. So…

Still working on DAUGHTERS OF THE PRIDE, the sequel to my novel SONS OF THE LION. I’m immensely pleased with how well this book is turning out so far and I’m hoping to have it turned in by Feb 21. If not, March 1 would be fine by me. Then it’s completing the sooper seekrit epic fantasy novel, turning in my Sha’Daa novella, and wrapping up Book 5 of the Kin Wars, WINTERBORN. 2019 was a pretty busy year but 2020 is shaping up to be even busier. Because after all that I still have more books to write!

It’s so horrible, woe is me… right?

3 thoughts on “Always Asking Questions

  1. I’ve survived shingles two times now. I can’t take the live vaccine because of a lowered immune system. The shingles likes to follow my sciatic nerve from hip to knee. Something I found that helped get this stuff into control is an amino acid called L-lysine. When I use it the shingle sores heal faster. This amino acid is also supposed to help with cell regeneration. Good luck and hope you feel better soon.

    • Thanks. Mine run from my back all the way around to my ribs. I still have a few sores but they’re not nearly as bad as all the tiny blisters were. This is my second bout of shingles as well, though this time was by far the worst.

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