Monday, October 11, 2010

Saturday 9th

When I look at the stats on this blog it’s clear to me that when I post something about writing, my books, science fiction, I get more interest, more hits and more in the comments section. Quite obviously the majority of the people visiting this site are here looking for Neal Asher the science fiction writer, not the Cretan home owner, gardener, tobacco grower, chilli grower and chilli sauce manufacturer. They’re not here to see how I renovate chairs, repoint walls or really to learn anything about Crete, or what happens to me particular interest at any one time. However, I do hope that the posts I do here about things other than SF at least entertain.

You see, I have a bit of a problem with blogging solely about my writing. I can’t tell you precisely what I’ve written about, how I sorted out this plot or that, what I’ve done with any of the characters because I would be giving too much away. This blog would be full of spoilers. I can tease you, but that’s about it. I can tell you something about the process, within limitations, but really, it’s boring. Let me give you an example: this last week I sat down at my computer each morning over five days and wrote a total of 12806 words, of which 10950 were for Zero Point, the rest being blogs. That’s it really. Would you want every one of my blog posts to be similar?

Such comments are the kind of thing I save for my journal, that kind of anal stuff I outline in ink at the bottom of each half page: number of fiction words written, number of blog words written, alcohol units drunk, cigarettes smoked, other jobs completed, amount of exercise, number of spots popped, total of toenails trimmed...

18 comments:

Mark T Croucher said...

I read them all mate. I don't comment all the time but I am interested in your Cretian adventure as it beats the crap out of my mundane existance. Any news on books, plots, movies etc is always a bonus in my eyes.

Keep up the good work.

Nerine Dorman said...

I enjoy seeing what goes on behind the scenes. This includes the chili-growing. ;-)

Sean said...

Maybe I'm in the minority here, but I actually prefer the non writing focused posts. It's nice to find out the status of a book, or how things are going on the writing front, but in general I don't like to know to much about the "details" of the writing. To me...it's sort of like watching "the making of" part of a movie. For instance, I love Doctor Who, but I never watch "Doctor Who Confidental". I know it's all make belive but it takes some of the fun out of it for me.


Many authors have blogs but the majority of them --with a few exception like John Scalzi and Patrick Rothfuss--just do the boring posts--only mentioning how the writing is going--instead of letting us get to know them more as a person. I've learned that you smoke cigarettes--proudly--and you're less than thrilled with the current political and economic makeup of England. Your views and observations of Crete are fascinating to me as it's a place I'd like to visit some day. I can't say I agree with all your worldviews and opinions but eh...so what. You'd be a fun person to sit down and have a few beers with.


I actually laughed out loud when I read your post about hiking to the town above your house and how your "exercise" got sidetracked by beer. I can relate.

Your post (friday,8th) about weather was rather timely as the wife and I are vising England in December. I suspected that it was unlikely we'd see the sun for the 2 weeks we will be there, but it was crushing to find out I was right. We live in Hawaii so this will be rough on us. I suspect I'll be visiting many pubs...


Post as much as you want. I'll read it all.

Scott said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Scott said...

It's easier and more likely for us readers to comment on writing-oriented posts. That doesn't mean we prefer them.

I'm the kind of guy who hates to see more than the bare minimum in a movie preview. I tend to skim past posts on upcoming books for the same reasons.

Your non-writing posts, however, are interesting to me. You have a very different background and outlook than I, and you live in a different environment. I enjoy the perspective and insight.

Larry said...

I much prefer reading about SF to be honest-sitting here in gloomy England and hearing about hot sun and blue seas, well, ya know....

What happened to those video messages you used to put up? ;)

packrat54 said...

I just enjoy tagging along, whatever's on your mind works for me. I should get my arse in gear on my own blog.

Jebel Krong said...

i read each and every one and it's all interesting - i don't always comment, but i do read them all. :D

been absorbed by the technician over last few days - will do a review on my blog, but even having finished it i do have some questions churning in my mind about it...

Graeme said...

Same as everyone else really. They are diary entries; it's hard to comment, especially with regards to the growing of things. We also grow lots of stuff at home, but this is your space, the same with your ongoing DIY projects. It's not easy to swap notes on what you've done as your writing clearly explains the process without necessarily leaving anything to probe about, and then you would end up with basically fawning comments about how clever and multi talented you are. Which if I don't miss my mark would probably grate on you. If you like I can do a guest piece on doing raised beds, a lean to workshop, and making a bench out of scrap 4 by 2’s.

It's interesting to see the underlying adventure, the less antiestablishmentarianist (that's a big word) libertarian (according to one review of you and your work on Amazon) Mr Asher, the far more carbon neutral, environmentally friendly, Tom and Barbara Good Mr Asher. It’s interesting to see that while your head is a hundreds of years in the future scattered across our galaxy, thinking about our potential (and according to some very likely evolution), that there you are in Crete breaking rocks, digging the garden and suffering from the rigours of middle age like some of the rest of us.

Were I to ask for anything for the blog, it would be an understanding of the process for creating retroacts, the How it is (by the eponymous Gordon), quotes from the weapons directory. It's fascinating that almost out of body commentary on your own work. And without insulting your intelligence gives you the lead in to the meat of the plot.

Crack on.

mr-maigo said...

It's interesting to see a writer as human and not just some sort of word cow that needs to just hurry up and get the next book out. Scalzi rarely mentions writing unless it's a secret project.

How many toe nails HAVE you trimmed? That could be a very interesting blog post.

Gog said...

At the risk of being a "me-too-er", I echo the thought of most of the other comments. I'd much rather see more frequent content instead of the occasional professional status update every 4-6 months. Thanks for allowing us more insight into your daily life.

Chrish said...

Hi Neal,

Please go on writing as you do, it's often hilarious, we appreciate it very much especially because we have seen where you live, Love, Chris and Anna. (please say hi to Caroline)

Jason said...

I came across your blog a few months ago, after reading a few of the Cormac novels, I did a bit of digging around online to see what else I might be interested in, and to my suprise found this.

The reason I keep coming back is because I find the information you share interesting, providing insight into (and possibly even inspiration from) your life and experiences.

The posts regarding your writing are great, but I still have a few books from your back catalogue to get hold of, so I dont worry too much about them. It's the stories about your life in a foriegn clime that enthrall me, even if the subject matter is something that makes me rage (puppy incident).

The TL:DR version is this - keep doing what your doing, I enjoy it and I'm guessing plenty other people do.

laurenlibrarian said...

I like hearing about Crete as well, especially when you have something to say about dealing with the local bureaucracy or how things work there.

Chrish said...

Well what do you know? lot's of people seem to love what you write about Crete! Why not develop a paralel writing career, enough examples of people being very succesful doing this sort of thing :-):-):-)

Jan Harald said...

See?! We hardcore Asher-fans like whatever you write, fiction or not... :)

/ Jan Harald

Thud said...

You write books?

Djehuty said...

I like to read about your life - in a totally non-stalker like fashion. It's one of the reasons I keep coming back.