Sunday 29 December 2013

Facebook: Adjusting your News Feed

Did you know that you can alter your news feed by assigning different levels of  'friendship' to your friends?

I did this yesterday and it really changes the nature of the posts you see. I love it.

Click on a Friends profile.
Click on the friends button, where there's a tick
Assign them as 'Best Friends' for more updates
Assign them as 'Acquaintances' for less updates
Assign them as 'Restricted' for even less updates

This is a really nifty feature. There's also a feature when you can create your own lists. That could be very useful if you've got lots and lots of Facebook friends.

I'm sorry if you already know it. I'm never sure if to post these tips. Maybe everyone already knows it.

Perhaps you all know something that I don't. What else can you do to refine your news feed?

Saturday 28 December 2013

Poem, Tweet and a Competition for the Very Small

My poem 'Ocean of Milk' is up at Eternal Haunted Summer.

And my tweet is up at Confettifall. 
For those of you who like  science fiction the very small, Nature's Futures is holding a competition to celebrate the launch of the electronic version of their anthology. You've got just 200 characters to encapsulate the future.  

Friday 20 December 2013

Blog Hits for the Year: Hints to Increase Your Page Views

Rahul posted his blog stats which I thought were very interesting. So I thought I'd do the same.

Here we go

Jan 2012                               1230
Feb                                       1117
March                                   1461
April                                      1657
May                                       1886
June                                      3608
July                                        4956
August                                   3943
September                            4100
October                                 4107
November                              2420
December                             1661

What I've seen is a big increase in hits ever since I've changed the layout to Blogger's dynamic view. Because the dynamic view allows the reader to see, essentially, all the blog posts I've made and I get hits for older posts.

I also get more hits when I post more than once a week.

It looks like my blog numbers have died off a bit in November and December and I'm not sure why. I'll have to investigate that.  

I've also had limited success from my cross promotional activities. (When I post to twitter or facebook.) 

But most of my hits will come from my e-mail signature, which I've set up automatically. And also from people googling my name. 

Wednesday 18 December 2013

Where Are My Story Links?

A reader recently made the helpful suggestion that I list my stories and links on my blog.

Quick question: Do I?

Edited to say: Thanks everyone. This was so helpful.
I did have links on my blog. In two places. Kudos to Amanda and possibly Sam who spotted them. (They were on the side (now removed) and under the header). I wanted to know if readers could see them, and clearly they couldn't. So that was a blog fail on my part.
So, I've tidied up the bar under the header, and renamed it My Science Fiction Stories instead of Science Fiction. etc.

Edited again: Now I've changed it yet again, to Free Online Stories and Bibliography

Thursday 12 December 2013

Life's a Drag: New Story in Nature's Futures

'Sibyl' has been published by Nature's Futures. 

 Art by JACEY

it's always a pleasure to be published by Nature. I'm looking forward to getting my hot little hands on the contributor's copy.

Edited one hour later: And it's arrived! They don't hang about. Bravo Nature.

Wednesday 11 December 2013

Story in Year's Best SF 18

The Year's Best SF 18 was published yesterday with my story 'Glass Future' (from Nature 2012)

Here are my Table of Content's buddies :

“Old Paint” by Megan Lindholm
“The Ghosts of Christmas” by Paul Cornell
“Prayer” by Robert Reed
“The Battle of Candle Arc” by Yoon Ha Lee
“Dormanna” by Gene Wolfe
“Holmes Sherlock: a Hwarhath Mystery” by Eleanor Arnason
“Electrica” by Sean McMullen Electrica
“Perfect Day” by C.S. Freidman
“Swift as a Dream and Fleeting as a Sigh” by John Barnes
“Liberty’s Daughter” by Naomi Kritzer
“Weep for Day” by Indrapramit Das
“In Plain Sight” by Pat Cadigan
“Application” by Lewis Shiner
“A Love Supreme” by Kathleen Ann Goonan
“Close Encounters” by Andy Duncan
“Two Sisters in Exile” by Aliette de Bodard
“Waves” by Ken Liu
“The North Revena Ladies Literary Society” by Catherine Shaffer
“Antarctica Starts Here” by Paul McAuley
“Bricks, Sticks, Straw” by Gwyneth Jones”
“The Sigma Structure Symphony” by Gregory Benford
“Glass Future” by Deborah Walker
“If Only” by Tony Ballantyne
“The Woman Who Shook the World Tree” by Michael Swanwick
“Nahiku West” by Linda Nagata
“Houseflies” by Joe Pitkin
“Branches on My Back, Sparrows in My Ear” by Nikki J. North
“The Peak of Eternal Light” by Bruce Sterling

Monday 9 December 2013

Writers' End of Year Round-Ups

Like the first flakes of snow, writer's end of year round-ups are beginning to appear. I've seen Ian Sales' and Lavie Tidhar's so far this year.

I love these because:

1) I love success the success of my internet pals and also people I don't know at all, but might be following on twitter.
2) Plus there's often links to free stories.
2) It gives me a chance to compare my own progress. Sensible advice is to acknowledge that every writer is different, and has different amounts of time to write etc. But that's no fun. I like comparing.
3) And this is a sneaky one: it gives me new venues to write for.  Often time I'll think, Ooh. haven't heard of that magazine must check it out.

Have you written your end of year round up yet? Do post a link when you do.

I'm keeping a list. I'm checking it twice:

Ian Sales 2013 and Me
Lavie Tidhar Short Stories
Rahul Kanakia Wrap Up 2013
Matthew Bennardo A Tough Year in Review
Amanda C Davies 2013 Year-in-Review
E Catherine Tobler What if (2013)
Cat Rambo 2013 Wrap Up
Simon Kewin 2013 In Review
Trisha 2013 Goals + Evaluation
Tim Pratt 2013 in Review
Ahimsa Kerp 2013- Write On!
Sarah Pinkser My Writitng Year 2013
Lisa Shapter A Year in the Life of a Working Writer
Milo James Fowler 2013 in numbers

Wednesday 4 December 2013

In the Mood for Some Writing Fun

I'm kicking up  my heels and having some fun with my writing this month. After all it is the season to be merry.

So, I'm on the prowl for fun venues for science fiction, fantasy and horror.

So far, I've found:

Journal of Unlikely Acceptances, open 1-15th December and looking for really, really bad flash from writers with one of more SFWA writing credits 5 cents per word.  (Yes. I've mentioned this before. But it really is fun).

Mad Scientist's Journal, accepting first person narratives set in the world of mad science. $10-$20

Miscellanea looking for <300 word extracts from imaginary books. $10

Of course, my idea of fun may not be yours. Tell me, what venues do it for you?

edited to add: Spinetinglers Annual Christmas Ghost Story (deadline 13th December) and Fifty Word Stories look fun