Hello, my readers! Life has been busy, as you can tell by this site’s wrap-up post for last year (2019) happening in the middle of February 2020. Full time work, and family time including my one year old daughter, are keeping me very busy. (As was being very sick at the end of December.) But I have wanted to take a look back for a while now, as I have a few things to say.
First, Virga’s Mystery’s “Balancing Act” has now been running for over a year; it began at the end of January 2019. I had debated splitting it up partway with another “Epsilon” story, but found myself with very little free time in the summer, and opted to use that time to finalize edits instead.
Yes, there was a bunch of editing that took place for “Balancing Act” from its July 2012 origin. Notably separating it into parts, giving Trixie more personality to do her own thing (rather than tying her to James), and generally explaining more about the world I’d touched on in the early cases (in particular during the big time skip).
However, Melissa Virga’s story will be ending shortly. Meaning something new in April 2020. That will likely be a return to “Epsilon”, as my schedule is gradually easing, but it could still be more runs of old writing. Do you have a preference? If Epsilon, will people will be interested enough to vote?
That said, I am pleased that I’ve maintained the posting schedule of every two weeks, ever since I shifted to it in July 2017 (during “Epsilon 4”). So if you want reliability, I’m here for you. But see more on site statistics below.
Secondly, work on my sequel to Time & Tied is still progressing… very slowly. Here’s a picture of Heather Bright, which I commissioned when I somehow made it to Anime North 2019. She’s the new time travel tech for Carrie, now that they’re at University. Many of the characters like her are in my head, even if their words are slow to hit the page.
As a quick reminder, my early writing for “Untied” dates from 2014, before I had even posted up Carrie Waterson’s first stories. I restarted from the top for NaNoWriMo 2017, managing 39,372 words by early December. I did edits for it the summer of 2018, splitting it into four files. November 2018 saw an additional 29,225 words, and by January 2019 we were at 6 files and over 65,000 words.
There wasn’t much writing time beyond that, as I went from part-time back to full time work. Still, November 2019 added another 33,373 words meaning we’re almost at 100k – and we’re almost at what I’d envisioned as the halfway point. So it seems we’re looking at a run of at least 4 “Books” again (as I did with the Time & Tied), assuming it all goes as planned.
A reminder that I can’t release the first part until the second is done, as the time travel aspect means some earlier scenes might need redoing. But that’s fine, as certain secondary characters are finally showing more of themselves, meaning I can give them more personality in those early scenes too.
To be clear, this is my priority as far as fiction writing goes (I’m not including non-fiction efforts for the Time Travel Nexus), which emphasizes how much little time I’ve had in the past year for writing at all. And reading, for that matter. I’m behind on other blogs, and I haven’t done much with Comic Tea Party in over half a year. Thank you for your patience.
As far as coins go for 2019 – read “Time & Tied” if you don’t understand why this is interesting – I got 3 toonies, 1 loonie, 9 quarters, and 4 dimes. That’s a total of 17. (I had 16 until Christmas, when I got an additional quarter driving home.) No nickels, which made me wonder if they minted any, but I got one as change just yesterday, so they’re out there. There were also special D-Day commemorative toonies, but I only got one as change in early January, so it’s not pictured.
I’ll probably keep an eye out for 2020 coins. Inflation is still a thing, meaning they’re still printing more money.
Finally, as I said above, I maintained a post every two weeks through 2019. That meant 27 new posts (including the extra “Behind the Scenes 5”), for a total of 315 postings to the blog overall. So, how do the statistics look overall?
My pageviews for 2018 totalled 2,429… and we’ve backslid to 1,492 for 2019. Granted, I have barely had time for any promotions. I auto-tweet out the current parts, and post them to my Facebook writing page whenever I remember. I did add “Balancing Act” to the Web Fiction Guide listing, and it came up in mid-May on their front page, but that’s about it.
Granted, that listing did help break up a rather impressive stretch of decimal views, which had been going on for over a month.
Decimal views means less than 10 views (in this case, under 5 views) per day, for 30 days. Because WordPress turns the scale into decimals. It actually happened twice in 2019, once for March through to May, and then again for October through to mid-December. Is that impressive? I mean, it’s likely something others cannot claim to have experienced in the fifth year of their blog being around.
My most popular day for 2019, as far as I can tell, was May 28th. That day saw about 52 page views. Most days had less than 15. Strangely, there’s been 9,249 spam messages blocked for the duration of the blog; I’m not sure why they’re so interested.
How many people have read through all of Virga’s story? Act 2A (from April) has only 16 views, while Act 5A (from November) has only 9. But that 9 is fairly consistent with the page views of posts afterwards. (Granted, last week’s posting has 3 views so far.) As to comments, I had 3 for the whole of 2019 (6 if you count my replies). Thanks to mathhombre (March/Sept) and chaosbeast (Nov).
The posts with the most hits (aside from the indexes) were Virga’s Act 1A (77 views), TT1 “Timely Discovery” (72 views), and Epsilon 3.1 “Data Integrity” (38 views). Those were followed by other Virga entries beyond 1A. Kind of nice that some of my older posts are getting looked at, even if people aren’t continuing to read. Top countries (over 100 views) were the US, Canada, and for some reason, Sweden. Thanks for coming out!
I believe that concludes everything I’d wanted to say. If you’re running your own website, hopefully it’s doing better. At any rate, I’m pleased about my consistency, and given the opportunity I wouldn’t have changed my priorities.
Final questions, would you like to see another “Epsilon”? Are you still interested in hearing about progress on “Time Untied”? And will you miss Melissa’s story at all? Feel free to drop a comment to let me know. Either way, hope you stick around, and thanks for reading.