Tag Archives: Google

The day I ask what you’d like to know.

Question MarkI write many topics here on the blog; personal, professional. Reviews, gaming, roleplaying, game design, writing and more.

I know what brings my Google traffic: SWTOR, Wheel of Time, D&D and managing OCPD. I don’t know how much of that traffic returns to read other things, or how much my regular readers are interested in those topics.

To a large degree, it doesn’t matter what I write; the challenge is to make any topic both interesting and accessible to any visitor.

However, in the wake of personal stories leading up to our anniversary, I’m curious what you, my daily or weekly visitors (especially lurkers) find interesting. What were your favorite posts? What would you like to know more about?

I’m deliberately not attaching a poll or links to specific articles, leaving the question open-ended.

 

The reason fame and wealth don’t matter.

The ReasonI use the WordPress Plugin “Counterize” to track statistics of the blog: What brings me traffic? Which posts are popular? Which links get clicked?

Most fascinating are the search terms that lead people here. Self-promotion goes to shared spheres: Writers, Bloggers, Techies, Gamers. Search traffic comes from anywhere; people who’ve never heard of me Google a topic and read what I had to say.

It’s as intimidating as it is gratifying.

Today, this search caught my eye:

what is important …fame or wealth

That’s brought two visitors here, 3.08% of my search traffic.

I haven’t blogged explicitly about either fame or wealth. But if people are going to search it and land here, however rarely, I’ll help:

Fame and wealth are not important.

What? Jason, your blog is called LEGENDS of JRP. Aren’t you chasing fame and wealth?

Not exactly. Writing is not lucrative. A convention panelist confessed that selling two books and six short stories inside a year (which is impressive) net him approximately…$10k. Not luxurious. Read More →

SOPA & PIPA

Representative Price,
Senator Burr,
Senator Hagan,

As your constituent, I ask that you oppose SOPA (H.R. 3261) and Protect IP Act (PIPA). Otherwise, I cannot in good conscience support your bid for reelection.

As a writer, small business owner, videographer and blogger, the internet is critical to my success in those media and has been instrumental to  my career. It allows me to reach my audience affordably and with minimal carbon footprint, and without fear of arbitrary censorship. Read More →

Jason’s Tshirt on top of Google

I recently sold another “GLHF”-themed shirt on Zazzle. That’s 8 so far, which is not bad considering I’ve done virtually no advertising or promotion.

Being rewarded for pure creativity. Imagine it.

The sale prompted me to wonder how easy it is to find my shirts; there are several where “GLHF” sets up a punchline.

I typed “GLHF shirt” (without quotes) into Google and was pleased to discover my products form the top 3 results. Awesome!

So now, if you have friends that play SC2 or other RTS games where “GLHF” is a common expression, instead of telling them “my friend Jason has a thing on zazzle if you go there and search open door and go to this store”, you can just say “Google GLFH shirt”.

Did I mention Christmas is soon?

SATURDAY SPOTLIGHT: Holes (The Movie)

Each Saturday, Jason spotlights one product or service he finds particularly useful or enjoyable; the kind of things that make you wonder, “Why doesn’t everyone have this?”

Happy weekend! Got plans? Me too.

I’m going to do nothing. On purpose. You see, even working hard can be its own rut if you’re not careful.

Some of the nothing I like to do is watch something. Like a movie. A motion picture. A flick. A film. A feature presentation, if you will.

Since the mutual advents of high definition and Netflix streaming and home delivery, I actually prefer to watch at home. You can pause for restroom breaks or more popcorn, and watch in any state of dress.

If a movie is on your packed agenda for this week, there’s one I’d like to recommend, and easily contends among the top five of my all time favorites. Read More →

April Sage’s Day

Bah humbug.

April Fool’s Day is a holiday which glorifies dishonesty. If you absolutely must mess with people today, I encourage you to play pranks in good taste rather than outright lie.

For example last year someone stole and hid the desk and chair from one of my coworkers. However, they left her computer and other working materials in place. I like the sort of prank which causes a lot of laughs, but no real harm.

That said, I have enjoyed many an April Fool’s Day joke, especially announcements by major companies, such as Blizzard’s preview of the bard class (a la guitar hero), Burger King’s left-handed Whoppers, NASA’s claim of water on Mars (a glass of water and a Mars candy bar), google’s pranks, wikipedia’s pranks, and so forth.

My friend Ben (getting married this July) played an awesome April Fool’s prank on me when he insisted (after months of excitement towards D&D and roleplaying in general) that he’d done some more research and found that playing D&D would offend his good Christian sensibilities. He’s way too good of a liar.

Pranks and tall tales which are fairly evident or quickly revealed are all part of the fun. Just make sure you aren’t saying or doing something dishonest which is truly hurtful. And remember that everyone draws that line differently.

It was EXACTLY what I wanted to know.

Several days ago, I got the first full-text reviewed/edited copy of Woman’s Best Friend back from a Hatrack reviewer.

It was beautiful.

To fully understand my satisfaction with having my own work ripped to shreds, you must first consider the palpable frustration of a rejection letter.

The whole aggravation of a rejected work isn’t that it simply wasn’t purchased; we’ve all had dates declined, interviews we didn’t get hired, a request denied. But in most of these circumstances, it is possible to determine why. In social circumstances, you can even ask:

Why didn’t you want to go on a date with me?

The immature lady will simply not return this call. The mature gal will admit, “Because you’re creepy, clingy, needy, you have no job, and you smell funny.” This may be painful, but it gives the guy (if he is mature) the opportunity to become less creepy and needy, get a job, and bathe more before asking the next girl.

When I get a rejection letter, my brain screams at the editor:

WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME?

Based on the number of podcasts and books-on-writing I’ve devoured, I wonder:

Was my cover letter too short? Too long? Too dry? Too arrogant? Too humble? Did I misspell the editor’s name? Did the story remind them of a worse one they read in gradeschool? A better one? Did they just buy a story like this? Did they discover a misprint? Not like the title? Were they annoyed at the shade of white I printed on? Was there a smudge on the manuscript? Did they Google me and disagree with my politics? Religion? Choice of video games?

Did I give too little description? Too much? Did they not care about the characters? Did they find an element cliche? Did they finish the first page? The second? Was the ending trite? Was there a problem with the plot? The grammar? The style? Did I use too many echoes? Was my characterization thin? Or too heavy-handed? Were my hooks too trendy? Were my paragraphs too long? Too short? Was my dialog too vague? Too precise? Too true to life to be interesting? Not true enough?

…and on and on.

The frustration is not just that the work didn’t sell; even successful writers sometimes have that happen. The frustration is that to fix it, I don’t even know where to start.

Enter the anonymous critic, willing to read the whole story and pull no punches with his opinions.

I wish I could reproduce the full text including his comments for you here, but then I would have used my First North American publication rights to the story.

Suffice to say that the first total stranger to read Woman’s Best Friend found a whole host of echoes I never noticed in myriad readings. Nor did anyone else. He found whole paragraphs which could be cut, their whole meaning still evident in the sentence preceding them.

I am now working on a 5th draft of Woman’s Best Friend, which will be much tighter and more streamlined. Then if that one isn’t good enough, a 6th, and so forth.

That’s how you become perfect.