As the last few grains of sand drain out of 2015, I imagine most of you are at parties, counting down the last ten seconds of the year and gulping down champagne. Myself, I'm at my in-laws' apartment, typing out a blog post and drinking Korean beer out of a plastic Mardis Gras cup with the Back to the Future trilogy playing in the background. If I'm honest, I wouldn't have it any other way.
I don't often see my father-in-law, a 70-year-old Korean man, laugh at English language movies. But seeing Biff Tannen crash his car into a manure truck transcends age and language barriers.
The New Year, traditionally, is a time for resolutions. Maybe you want to lose weight, or stop smoking. Both of these are noble pursuits, and things I hope to someday accomplish. But I will not be naming either of these on my own personal list of New Year's resolutions, because a week from now is, traditionally, a time to tell your resolutions that they can go fuck themselves.
2015 has been an incredible year for me. It was the year I finally started taking this blog seriously, my Facebook page has been steadily growing, and my books have been selling so well that I was finally able to quit my job and write full time.
For 2016, my goals are simple. I want to kick even more ass.
To accomplish these goals, I intend to carry on just as I have in 2015. That may not sound very resolution-ish, but I'm not talking about just doing the same shit I did all over again.
I mean, sure, I'll be doing some of the same things... writing more books, spamming my shit on Twitter, maintaining this blog, trying to suck less, passing along your requests to Saturn Five Sound to get those audiobooks made faster, etc...
But what I believe really made things take off for me last year was all of the experimenting I did. 2015, for me, was all about trying new ways to reach a wider audience. Targeted Facebook ads, trying to subtly encourage Amazon to associate my books with the books of more famous authors, writing some gamer-related blog posts.
This was also the year I started participating in the Authors and Dragons podcast. The gaming part that you get to hear is lots of fun, but listening to the pre-and-post-game chit-chat between authors, some of who are more prolific and successful than myself, and probably all more knowledgeable about the publishing industry, has been educational as well.
It's this experimentation that I intend to keep moving forward with in 2016, and I've already started! Yesterday marked a historic milestone here on the C&C blog. I had my first GUEST POST, an interesting Star Wars theory by Steve Wetherell.
The benefits to me are obvious. More content for my site by a funny and talented author, and another person with a vested interest in sharing links to my site with others.
The benefits to Steve are less concrete. I can't afford to pay writers for content, and I don't get enough traffic to boast promises of great exposure, but for someone like Steve, who has things to say, but doesn't want the bother of maintaining his own blog, it's a better-than-nothing option.
So in the spirit of new beginnings, I'd like to offer the same option to you, my dear readers.
Are you a writer so starved for minimal exposure that a spot on this blog feels like a step up? Feel free to send me a pitch!
I can't guarantee anything. It's the nature of experimentation that sometimes (more often than not) things just don't work out. But it's a new year. Roll enough dice, and you're bound to hit some Natural 20s.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!