Timothy S. Brannan, The Other Side
It is that time of year again. The holidays are done. The kids are all back in school. It is way too cold for yardwork or being outside so naturally our thoughts turn to writing.
Or maybe that is just me.
|Strange Brew cover by Peter Bradley|
I write. I blog. The lines blur until it comes to the final product. But honestly it doesn’t have too.
Allow me to take a step back. I have been blogging now since about 2007, prior to that I maintained a website since about 1995 or so. I have always had something to say. I began blogging as a way to gather up my thoughts for the book I was working on at the time. So for me there is a lot of harmony between “book” writing and “blogging” writing. I first took part in the A to Z Challenge in 2011. I made it my own goal to visit and comment on everyone’s blog. My own efforts though were less focused, I posted what I wanted on that day. Yeah. I was pretty busy in April of 2011. For 2012 I went really crazy and blogged on a theme (which is in my opinion the best way to go) and I also posted on my other blog, The Freedom of Nonbelief with the A to Z of the atheists that had most influenced me. Both of these were good and it was a lot of fun, but I was still really busy.
Last year though I hit on the magical recipe. On my main blog I actually focused on something I was doing for my book writing and made the A to Z part of my research and rough draft cycle.
I wasn’t sure if I was going to do the A to Z again this year. I have new Kickstarter out for my next book on witches (and it is a huge manuscript) and that is taking up a lot of my time now. Plus I didn’t get as far as I wanted on the demon book as I wanted. But yet the material I got out of it last year is just too good NOT to do it again.
So this year I am once again doing my “Theme with a purpose”. At present I have a few WIPs on my hard-drive. I am a freelancer and I use Kickstarter to help fund editing, art and layout so my projects are largely my own. Top of my list is an A to Z of Vampires. I have wanted to get a vampire book out for some time and it was almost my topic last year.
Here is my strategy:
- Make the A to Z posting part of my own research. I tend to research all over the place, so with something like this it is good to start early. I might not have anything on Aswang yet but a lot on Baobhan Sìth.
- The posts are notes, not the final document. With the Demons last year sometimes I all had was a name and a vague idea on how I was going to use it. Other times I had material that I could almost cut and paste right into my document. The goal though isn’t to be “cut and paste” ready but have an idea on what I want.
- Post for feedback. During the A to Z I get a much wider variety of readership than usual. I also get more people replying to my posts. You might not know anything about my games but there are enough horror writers on this challenge that I am certain to get some great feedback.
- Make it worth your time and make it fun. No one will read my posts if it looks like they were a chore to do. If I am phoning it in so speak cause I can’t find a Vampire for “Q” (and I haven’t yet) then why should I expect anyone to read? By the way if you do know of a Vampire that starts with Q then email me!
Doing the A to Z Challenge is a Challenge, but it doesn’t have to be a Chore.
About the Author
Timothy S. Brannan is the author of The Other Side blog, http://timbrannan.blogspot.com/
He is also the author of “The Ghosts of Albion RPG”, “The Witch”, “Eldritch Witchery” and the upcoming “Strange Brew” which is currently in a Kickstarter Campaign. Please stop by and see if this is something you would like to support.