ANOTHER WORLD HAS LIVED TO SEE ITS FIRST BIRTHDAY.
Now it is time to reflect on what has gone, and look ahead to what is still to come.
Like me, it probably escaped your notice that Saturday 1st November marked the first anniversary of Another World. Looking back on that day when I made my initial posts for the blog, I didn’t give any thought to what the future had in store for the site. After all there was no guarantee that it would still be part of the blogosphere twelve months later. How may people start a blog only to abandon it weeks later, for one reason or another? I myself have been guilty of quickly losing interest in maintaining a blog on two occasions in the past. Yet here I am today celebrating the first anniversary of this blog.
As I prepare myself for another twelve months (hopefully), I would like to share some of my reflections on the first year: The things that I am reasonably pleased with, those things that weren’t so good, and the areas I intend to improve upon during the second year.
Starting off with the thing that I am most happy with, obviously I must mention how pleased I am that I have persevered with the blog for a year. It is an accomplishment that I’m actually rather proud of, and it has given me all the encouragement I need to invest more time in the blog.
Secondly, as I didn’t want to overburden myself in regard to reviewing books, I aimed to achieve an average of one book review posted every two weeks. This would mean a total of twenty-six books during the course of the year. I am happy to report that I managed to reach this goal, having reviewed twenty-nine stories in total.
The one other thing that I am really pleased about, was that I managed to secure an interview with a first time author promoting his début science fiction novel. This was a very unexpected surprise as I had no intention of pursuing interviews during my first year of book blogging. There are numerous other, longer running blogs, with much larger followings for authors to engage with, that it didn’t seem worthwhile trying to compete against them.
I wish there were more I could point to and say that I was genuinely happy with, but the aforementioned three are all I can come up with. The unfortunate truth is that there are many more things that I am dissatisfied with, as I look back at the previous year.
First off, is the frequency of new posts. When I first started the blog I decided that I would commit myself to posting a minimum of once a week. This should have been an easily achievable target. Sadly there were a few occasions when I went up to three consecutive weeks without a new post. While some of the blame for this slackness can be laid at the door of time constraints outside of my control, some of it was due to laziness and lack of commitment on my part.
Next up, I’m really disappointed at just how few science fiction titles I reviewed over the course of the year. Of the twenty-nine reviews posted thus far, only The Minority Report and Nylon Angel are out-and-out science fiction tales; in addition to the steampunk, Stormdancer, and alternate history, Romanitas, which contain some sci-fi elements. While I generally prefer fantasy over science fiction when it comes to literature, I am still not pleased with the glaring disparity between the numbers.
Looking to the future of the blog, I have drawn up a list of things I intend to do in order to greatly improve the content that is posted. First of all, I am committing to posting a minimum of once a day; even if it’s just to post a quote from a book that I like. I certainly don’t want a repeat of those occasions when the blog went several weeks without a single update.
I aim to increase the number of book reviews I post over the next year, compared to the last, by setting myself a goal of one review a week. That should mean at least fifty-two reviews during the next twelve months. I also intend to drastically improve the ratio of science fiction titles during that time, as that was a major failing I hope to avoid repeating again. Plus I want to start reviewing more work by independent / self published authors.
I really enjoyed the opportunity to conduct an interview a few weeks back, so I will be making much more of an effort to arrange a few more in future. Whether it be with authors or just people involved in publishing in general.
Finally, having looked at my stats for the past year, I was very surprised to discover that my most viewed post was The Top Ten Most Influential Science Fiction Authors, by a huge margin. For this reason I’ve decided it’s worth my time to write many more opinion pieces / editorials for the blog. If I can, I will try to post one every second week; assuming of course I have something of interest to write about.
Insights, reflections and opinions on various subject matters related to fantasy and science fiction literature. Maybe the odd talking point that others can also weigh into if so inclined.