Pull up a log by the campfire and enjoy some original creations by Stuart J. Whitmore, including photos, fiction, software, technical solutions, video, and more.

No Fanfare: Experiment Results

Although I don't have much time for blogging as I try to get caught up on projects before NaNoWriMo arrives in a couple weeks, I wanted to share some thoughts about my most recent release, No Fanfare. It's been on the market for about a month and a half now. It was experimental right from the start, even before I decided to publish it, and I might as well share some results even though the experiments were not rigorously constructed. As seems fitting for the "no fanfare" title, the story itself has had no significant response from readers and thus, in a sense, all of the experiments eventually failed. Read on to see what I mean.

New Book: Selling Books with Bitcoin

On this blog I have mentioned Bitcoin several times before. The idea of accepting Bitcoin for my books has been of interest to me pretty much since I first learned about Bitcoin. I was (unfortunately) hesitant to buy Bitcoin... back when I could've bought 1 BTC for ten bucks... and thought that selling something would be a good way to get some Bitcoin. Then I could experiment with those funds to learn more about Bitcoin itself. Turns out that was not the right decision to make at the time. To date, I've sold all of one copy of one 99-cent book for Bitcoin, so it's basically gone nowhere. So far.

I'm either tenacious or an incurable dreamer, but I believe that it's at least possible to sell a meaningful number of books to buyers paying with Bitcoin. So, I wrote a book about it. It's not a long book, and it's not really done yet, but you can read what I have so far right here: Selling Books with Bitcoin. Read on for more details about this new book project.

Writers, Beware the Service-Provider Conundrum

Published writers, are you tempted to offer your services to other writers who are still working toward getting their books on the market? They need help with editing, formatting, cover design... you know there's a lot involved in creating a quality product. If you're thinking about doing that, I can relate! I felt the same way, and I acted on it.

After hearing about other indie writers being ripped off for basic services, and having my own experience self-publishing my books, I decided to make life harder for the sharks by offering better services at vastly lower prices. Originally this was focused on children's books and was on a pay-what-you-want model (but not free). I eventually created Crenel Publishing to provide, as the tagline goes, "publishing services for a digital world."

It seemed a slam-dunk decision. I have a solid technical background and have been publishing digitally since before the Web existed (and thus before Amazon existed), and I could provide technically-correct, author-sensitive services at reasonable prices. Everybody should win, other than the sharks... right? What I didn't expect was an inherent conflict that would loom as my client list started to grow. Read on to learn more about what I now see as the service-provider conundrum.

I Might Flip for NaNoWriMo 2015

This blog post serves two purposes. The first is what the title is about, which I will explain below. The second is to serve as a way for me to become acquainted with an online collaborative writing tool called Penflip. If you’ve been reading my blog long enough to know how much I promote the use of Markdown to draft novels, you’ll understand why Penflip being built around Markdown is so appealing to me. For the most part, the collaborative side of Penflip is less important to me, so I will leave discussion of that aspect to someone else. As for the NaNoWriMo angle? I’m mostly committed to participating in NaNoWriMo this year, and using Penflip for it – and that actually means a lot more than “hey, I have a new tool to use.” Read on to see what I mean!

Three Reasons to Give Up Your Dreams

Dreams—meaning lofty goals in life, not sleepy-time imaginings—are highly valued in our society. You don't have to look far to see social messages urging people to not give up on their dreams; indeed, we are urged to pursue our dreams with all our might. Broken dreams are seen as a bad thing. It is very common to have a dream to "write a book someday," and the annual NaNoWriMo event helps make that dream a reality for many people every year. But I'm not writing this blog entry to be a part of that bandwagon. I'm here to tell you that there are good reasons sometimes to give up your dreams. Read on to see three of them.

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