Mmmmm… Babylicious

Look what we found in the cabbage patch!

Okay, so we didn’t find the baby in the cabbage patch. We don’t even have cabbage patch. We once grew lettuce in the garden, but all we found in the lettuce garden was, you know, lettuce. This baby came as part of a package deal when friends of ours came over for visit, bringing their infant with them — which Krissy immediately took possession of, because she does love her some baby.

And before you ask, no, we’re not planning on any more ourselves. We did our time in the baby trenches. The best thing about visiting babies is that you get to give them back to the parents for things like diaper changes and feedings. Which is to say, all the fun of a baby without all the work of a baby. And that makes this the very best baby of all!


That One Small Detail I Alluded To In the Previous Post

It’s this:

Last year about this time I mentioned that my plan for the year was to devote my mornings to writing pay copy, which meant less time doing things on the Internet before noon. It was a good idea, and in a general sense I did much of my non-net writing during that time. But I also ended up doing a fair amount of backsliding. Basically what I’ve found is that if I pop up the Internet first thing in the morning, just to check e-mail, etc, I have a pretty good chance of then not getting to actual work until much later in the day, at a point when I am not as energized for it, and therefore do commensurately less of it.

So this year I’m going to get serious about things, time-wise. Since I very often find it’s useful for me to write or say something in order to sink it into my brain, here it is: in 2011, Monday through Friday*, I will not be online at all before noon, or before 2,000 words of pay copy, whichever comes first. Because now that I am old, morning is my best creative time, and because self-knowledge tells me that I allow myself to get distracted if I don’t set down an actual rule for myself. Now I have.

What this means for you:

1. No morning posts unless a) I’m up late and posting right after midnight, b) I’ve been productive and hit my writing quota, c) I wrote something the night before and scheduled it for release in the AM.

2. If you try to contact me before noon, you’re not likely to get a response.

3. Presuming I’m disciplined about this, lots of new fiction. Not all of which will be available immediately — remember that novels, etc have production cycles to consider — but a full pipeline is never a bad thing for any of us.

What was the asterisk for? The asterisk is for “*when I am at home.” Because I’ll be traveling a decent amount in 2011 and typically on travel days I don’t do too much creative work because I’m a grumpy traveler and/or I’m busy doing the things I traveled to do. Nevertheless, for 2011 when I travel I’m going to try to do the Cory Doctorow thing of at least 250 words regardless of where I am or what I’m doing. It’s better than my current writing plan for travel days (i.e., write nothing), and as with anything, the more one does it, the more one is able to do it.

This goes in effect starting tomorrow. Wheee! Wish me luck.


Whatever Stats 2010: The Nerdination

Because I know you want to know these things, and keeping in mind the standard caveats regarding the accuracy of the WordPress stats suite:

1. The WordPress stats suite suggests that viewership in 2010 was up from 2009, with 5.13 million views recorded by the stats suite, up from 4.46 million views the year before. The month with the highest viewership in 2010 was February, when the Amazon thing happened; the lowest viewership was in August, when I was on hiatus (although the site was still very well trafficked, thanks to the guest bloggers).

Naturally I’m very pleased that the viewership of the site continues to grow; it’s nice to know new people are still dropping by. Hello, newer people. I love you.

2. The top 10 posts of the year — by visits to Whatever directly — are, in popular order:

  1. Things I Don’t Have to Think About Today
  2. All The Many Ways Amazon So Very Failed the Weekend
  3. Wil Wheaton/John Scalzi Fan Fiction Contest to Benefit the Lupus Alliance of America
  4. Being Poor
  5. Kodi, 1997 – 2010
  6. What I Think About Atlas Shrugged
  7. A Quick Note On eBook Pricing and Amazon Hijinx
  8. An Interview With the Nativity Innkeeper
  9. 10 Things Teenage Writers Should Know About Writing
  10. How to Make a Schadenfreude Pie

Folks who know the site at all will observe that three of the top ten posts are posts from the archives (Being Poor, Teenage Writers, Schadenfreude Pie), and among the top twenty posts, another four are archive posts, including (of course) the one featuring bacon cat. It’s nice to have a “greatest hits” in this respect, and to be blunt I’m glad “Being Poor” is a bigger “hit” than bacon cat, on a year to year basis.

3. That said, I’ll note that if one includes RSS readership, the single most viewed Whatever post of the year, by far, was “Nativity Innkeeper,” which tracked 175,000 total views in 2010, more than doubling the 80,000 total views for “Things I Don’t Have to Think About Today,” even though it was available for substantially less time. Although off-site viewing has happened for as long as their have been RSS feeds available, in 2010 it appears to be taking on a life of its own. I’m going to have to figure out what it means, but at the same time I don’t really see it changing the way I do things here on the site.

4. Indeed, at this point, I have no major plans to change anything about what I do with the site, aside from a minor point of scheduling, which I will detail separately. I like it the way it is and for my purposes (self-entertainment, heat sink, place to socialize online, outlet for things I don’t write for the market) it does what it does pretty well. So I’ll just keep at it. Thanks for dropping by to see what I’m up to.

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