MeiLin's blog

Marketing Mission #8: Rate up a particular review at WFG

  • Posted on: 25 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Over at, IHGK remains top-rated, and that's good. But so many of the reviews refer to the old draft. I want to get the word out that what is said there about IHGK is outdated. So I've put up a "review" myself. Could you please vote it up? This is what it says in case you're worried I'm sock-puppeting:

The Author Would Like to Say…
. . . that all but one of these reviews reflects a version of the serial that is no longer available. Please come check out the new version. It’s better. Promise.

That's all it says. You'll find it here. Just log in to WFG if you have an account and mark the review as helpful.

That's it! Quick and easy!

And yes, I rated myself five stars. I'm the only pimp I have.

For other Marketing Missions--quick and easy things you can do to help promote the story--click on the "All Together Now" icon. Thanks!

i r reel riter nao

  • Posted on: 22 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

I can now officially say "THFPPLLL" to those who maintain that self-published authors are losers who can't get accepted by publishers. Circlet Press has accepted my story "Fears Moon Woman" for their upcoming shapeshifter erotica anthology "Like a Moonrise." Smile

The story features Rabbit Runnels, the hapless, gentle deputy from Scryer's Gulch, but stands alone. The Gulch will remain PG-13, but it was fun to get poor ol' Rabbit laid.

I haven't seen the contract yet, so I don't know when exactly I can put it up here. When I do it'll be in the Patron section.

Marketing Mission #6: Stumbleupon

  • Posted on: 21 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Marketing Missions are quick and easy things you can do to help these stories gain an audience. Without an audience, there is no story. Here's today's!

At the top and bottom of every page, you'll find a button that says "SHARE." This button allows you to take quick actions: bookmarking at; Twittering; favoriting in your browser; emailing to a friend; and StumbleUpon. Today I'm going to ask you to "stumble" the History and the Gulch, at the two pages I've linked to.

While you're at it, if you want to Digg, or anything else in the "Share" button, help yourself!

That's it! Quick and easy. If you're in the mood to do other Marketing Missions, just click on the "All Together Now" graphic to find more.

The book proof

  • Posted on: 20 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

The book proof is back, and it's gorgeous. Any complaints I had about CreateSpace are gone.

Yeah, the first proof was a dog's breakfast, the worst print job I've seen in some time. But CreateSpace's customer service was in overdrive. They tracked me down via Twitter--THEY wrote ME, not the other way round--and helped me get things sorted out. I stand in awe, and it cements why I use them instead of Lulu, iUniverse, or one of the other printers.

I'll be ordering hard copies for the pre-salers today. I have to do it in batches because the pre-sale money is long gone and to fulfill all of them and the pre-orders will be close to $1,000, but I'll be ordering and shipping as fast as I can afford to. (If you've been putting off buying an ebook, now would be an awesome time to do so.)

If you want to get the paperback RIGHT NOW without waiting for me or an autograph, buy "Lovers and Beloveds" at CreateSpace.

Call for ASAP beta: "Scryer's Gulch" erotica (updated)

  • Posted on: 15 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

The public Gulch will stay resolutely PG-13, but there will be occasional Gulchsmut. The story for which I need a beta toot sweet is a Rabbit Runnels story set during his first full moon as a werecritter; it's actually a pretty central part of his backstory.

I need someone asap; today's the deadline. I'm trying to get this into a Circlet Press anthology.

Update: Too late! Thanks to Taslin and Char!

"Other Sides" is here!

  • Posted on: 14 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Gah! I'm on deadline (in hopes of making it into Like a Moonrise) and almost forgot the big news of the day!

My stand-alone story "Dalston Junction" is in the anthology "Other Sides." You can download it TODAY, RIGHT NOW, FOR FREE! Twelve stories by fourteen webserial writers, including M.C.A Hogarth, A.M Harte, Char Cotrill and Erica Bercegeay, MCM and more. Download the free "Other Sides" anthology in PDF or ePub.

And there's a scavenger hunt! Except someone already solved it! Biggrin

My story will appear here at some point in the Patron area. I'm waiting to get the okay as to when that can happen.

Edit: Here's an excerpt of "Dalston Junction":

It always amused Amelia to see Margaret’s little round glasses steam over when she peered into the teapot. She herself had strong eyes, the only way in which she was stronger than Margaret, she mused. She returned her thoughts to the letter in her hand. “Another answer to our advertisement,” she said. The handwriting jumped its lines, as if the writer had trouble controlling the pen, and ink blots spattered the page. “No lack of sad cases this week.”

“So much the better for us,” said Margaret, taking the letter. “Boy,” she read aloud. “Three weeks old. ‘Discretion called for.’ Perfect.” Margaret linked her hands behind her back and stretched. “Damnable corset, I’ll never get used to it. Have you taken the last one’s clothes to the pawn shop yet?”

“No,” sighed Amelia. “I’ll sort them over tea, shall I.” A drooping, brown paper bundle tied with limp string stood on the trestle table. Margaret took up the tray sitting next to it, laden with the tea things, and strode through the kitchen door. Amelia tucked the sad package and her enormous pink challis shawl under her arm, and trailed after.

Once in the comfortable sitting room, she opened the package, thin hands moving among the tiny garments: two dresses; several flannel waists; two caps knitted in fine wool; miniscule shoes that shook in her trembling palm. “Shouldn’t we ought to burn these? The pawn shop’s bound to get suspicious at some point.”

“Then use another one. There are only several dozen in London,” said Margaret. The dull gold signet ring on her right hand clinked against the porcelain tea things as she reached for cake. “We need the money for housekeeping. The money’s the whole point.”

Amelia examined the fine seams of a little dress of pale blue fine wool. Expensive fabric for a baby dress. Such care taken in the stitching. She wondered about the mother who’d made these things for her child. Amelia had only seen the woman for a few minutes, but fingering the dress brought a closeness she shouldn’t allow herself. “Pity the wee one won’t ever wear them.”

“Somebody’s ‘wee one’ will.” Margaret fixed her companion with a pinched eye. “I often wonder why you’re here, Amelia. You’re far too soft-hearted.”
Amelia’s fingers hovered over the sugar bowl. Two lumps? One? “I like babies.” None.

“You spend minutes with them. I do all the disposal work. I don’t see how it matters,” snorted Margaret between bites of cake.

“I don’t suppose it does,” murmured Amelia. She folded the tiny clothes into a neat pile, set the tiny shoes atop them, and drank her tea.

Scryer's Gulch skip week

  • Posted on: 12 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

I'm on deadline for a Circlet Press anthology I hope to get into with a Rabbit Runnels prequel story, so we're going to skip this week's Gulch update. If I don't make it into the anthology, the story will be going into the Patron area, not just to give them content, but also because the story is NC-17 and I want to keep the visible Gulch PG-13. Eventually it will end up there, though I'm not sure when; Circlet will have a delay before I can put it up online I'm sure.

"Other Sides" anthology giveaway!

  • Posted on: 10 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

This Thursday, 10/14/10, the first anthology from Ergofiction Magazine hits the bricks. It's called Other Sides, and it features twelve short stories from some of the best weblit writers currently working, including yrs trly. It's an ebook--and a free one at that--but there will be print copies available.

In fact! Wanna win one? Here's your chance!

Enter at Goodreads for a chance to win one of five paperback copies!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Other Sides: 12 Webfiction Tales (Paperback) by A.M. Harte

Other Sides

by A.M. Harte

Giveaway ends October 28, 2010.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

My guest post at Circlet Press

  • Posted on: 7 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Hey folks, I've got a guest post up at Circlet Press's blog. The topic: Fictional Sex Among Fictional Teenagers>:

When I started writing, I thought “An Intimate History of the Greater Kingdom” was strictly erotica (it’s gotten way, way out of hand since then), and so I joined an erotica group. I made the mistake of telling them my hero was under eighteen. I was promptly drummed out of the group as a pedophile.

Let me repeat that: I was classed as a pedophile because I depicted a fictional sixteen-year-old having fictional sex. Not that I was having sex with a real sixteen-year-old (I’m nearly fifty–ewww), but that I was writing about a fictional sixteen-year-old having fictional sex with fictional people close to his own age. Unless you count omnipotent, ageless beings.

I myself have never had sex with a real sixteen-year-old, not even when I was sixteen, and consider myself lucky. Most men can tell you what they knew about making love to a woman at age sixteen and it’s essentially…*crickets*



  • Posted on: 5 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

I got the proof copy back from CreateSpace--very quickly, I might add--but the cover is completely borked. Incorrect margins--just a mess. Sad This pushes things back at least a week. I was hoping to ship 10/15 but it may be closer to 10/20. Sorry, guys.

A short story collection you won't want to miss

  • Posted on: 4 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Ergofiction Magazine has collected twelve short stories by some of the best web writers out there. And you'll get to read 'em, free! Stories by:

  • M.C.A. Hogarth
  • Erica Bercegeay and Char Cotrill
  • MCM
  • Zoe E. Whitten
  • G.L. Drummond
  • Lyn Thorne-Alder
  • T.L. Whiteman
  • Nancy Brauer
  • Chris Childs
  • Isa K.
  • M. Jones
  • A.M. Harte

...and me, with an introduction by Ergofiction editor Jan Oda.

My contribution is neither Gulch nor History-related, but was inspired by real events in 19th century Britain. Me with the Victorian stuff. I wonder if I'll ever write about the present day, or the future.


Anyway, the collection goes live October 14th. We're not sure about the distribution points yet; stay tuned!

New story for patrons posted

  • Posted on: 3 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

The Creation of the World According to Anniki of Litta:

This is a teaching handed down within certain circles in the Sister's Temple and popularized by Sister Anniki of Litta, whose faction is now led by Ibbit. Anniki's thoughts are considered heretical throughout the other Temples. While officially the Sister's Temple repudiates Anniki's teachings--and in fact executed her for heresy circa 970 KY--the beliefs espoused in Anniki's glosses on Tremontine religious teachings are held to varying degrees by a large minority of Sisters.

In the beginning there was the Void, and the Void took form and became the Lady. And the Lady was all there was. The Lady was lonely, and so she took one of Her eyes and one of Her fingerbones and made a spindle. She spun her hair into fine thread on the spindle and unwound it all around her, and it formed into all things--the earth, the stars, the plants, the animals and the people. All were as the Lady. There was no male thing in the world, and peace reigned.

Patrons, read on -->

Marketing Mission #4: TopWebFiction bookmarks

  • Posted on: 2 October 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Here's something quick and easy you can do to help the project--two things, really, but they're so easy they count as one.

Drag these links to your bookmarks toolbar:
Vote SG

Or add those pages to Morning Coffee if you use it (I do, it's great).

Once a day, click on those bookmarks in your toolbar and vote for the stories. There's a story that is regularly number one on Top Web Fiction that has far fewer readers than we do. Let's make some noise!

Click on the All Together Now image for more Marketing Missions. Thanks for helping!

Today from the 'Weenies: Nothing Gold Can Stay

  • Posted on: 28 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

I am so effing sleepy. To wit: this is the best I can do with this scent, and it's not helping that the entire house smells of chicken soup.

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

Dewy green leaves colored by Moroccan amber, ginseng, and rooibos.

In the decant: Very perfume-y, and not in the good BPAL way.

Wet: Better, a lot better. My first hit is a green aquatic, which normally wouldn't work on me. An almost lime green. The rooibos and the amber play really nicely together, and I confess I couldn't pick ginseng out of a line-up. I think this is a surprise hit, very fresh. It reminds me more of spring than autumn, though.

Dry: This fades very quickly. For the brief time it's here, it's lovely, fading into rooibos and amber with that little almost-citrusy green at the back. It reminds me a little of Chanel no. 19, but that's probably me misremembering.

Marketing Mission #3: Goodreads Indie Fantasy List (updated)

  • Posted on: 27 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Today's Marketing Mission--short things you can do to help find an audience--is at Goodreads. If you don't have a Goodreads account, you might want to get one; it's really rather a fun place.

So, assuming you have an account:

1) Go to the Best Indie Fantasy Books List.

2) Vote for "Scryer's Gulch" and "Lovers and Beloveds."

That's it! Quick and easy. Thank you!

For other Marketing Missions, click the All Together Now icon.

UPDATE! SPECIAL BONUS MISSION! Also at Goodreads! Just discovered I was on another list.

1) Go to the Best Independent Novels list and do the same. "Lovers and Beloveds" is the only book on that list, and I don't really think Scryer's belongs there; it's not a novel.

I'm already #1 on the Fantasy list! Thank you!

Today from the 'Weenies: The Hag

  • Posted on: 25 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Today's scent is The Hag:

Black musk, bay leaves, galangal, bourbon vetiver, blackcurrant, and rum.

This is sort of a drive-by reviewing.

In the decant: Immediate hit is foody, I'm assuming from the rum and blackcurrant, followed by a sort of cologne-y scent that I assume is the bay.

Wet: Yep, rum, then vetiver; combined they smell very foody. Boy this is changing fast. Here comes the sweet, fruity currant. The bay's at the back but it's present. So far this is lovely.

Dry: The bay, musk and vetiver are more to the front than they were. There's a little rum left. This is not boozy at all. I really rather like it.

Marketing Mission #2: Tag/rate "Lovers and Beloveds" at Amazon

  • Posted on: 24 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Here's today's Marketing Mission, something really fast and free you can do to help promote the stories here.

Go to the Kindle store listing for the "Lovers and Beloveds" ebook (US / UK)

1) Write a review/rate it

2) Tag it "kindle" (and whatever else you think it should be tagged)

That's it! One quick thing. Thanks!

For other Marketing Missions, click the All Together Now icon.

Marketing Mission #1: Tag and review "Scryer's Gulch" at Amazon

  • Posted on: 22 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

There are two ways to look at my work right now:

I'm one writer, with no publisher, foolishly doing this alone.


I'm a writer with dedicated fans, and we're doing this together.

The world wants me, and you, to look at it the first way, because that validates the "scarcity" model of publishing. The reality is, we really are doing this together; I could never have gotten this far without you Historians, and there is plenty, not scarcity.

So here's the first Marketing Mission, this time for "Scryer's Gulch." These are quick, free ways you can help get the word out.

If you have an Amazon account, I want you to do one or both of two things:

Go to the Kindle store listing for "Scryer's Gulch" (US / UK)

1) Write a review/rate it

2) Tag it "kindle" (and whatever else you think it should be tagged)

That's it! One quick thing. I'd really, really, really appreciate it.

For other Marketing Missions, click the All Together Now icon.

Ebook price drop

  • Posted on: 22 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

"Lovers and Beloveds" is selling better than I'd expected (I'd expected 5 or 6 in my worst nightmares and I've done ten times that), but worse than I'd hoped. I've been told over and over that $2.99 is the price point for an unknown, but I priced at $3.99 in hopes the fan base might support it.

It hasn't, which is totally NOT your fault. The people who actually read the blog part of this site have been NOTHING but supportive, and this is not me pleading poverty or anything, this is me trying to find my audience after 18 months of attrition. I want my audience back. It's reviving--I've doubled the audience since the beginning of the month, but it had sunk so low that doubling is a small dent.

Later today I'm going to post the first Marketing Mission, something simple and quick you can do to help out. Because if I don't find my audience, I can't continue to write--not a threat, just a financial reality. It's that simple.

In the meantime, I have bowed to reality and priced the ebook at $2.99 at Amazon and $3.49 at Smashwords. (Because Smashword partners discount, I have to price it a little higher at Smashwords so I don't lose my Amazon listing.)

I've also taken out a sponsorship on Kindle Nation Daily that I'm told more than pays itself back--if KND accepts my ad. That's a big "if" considering the content. Cross fingers. Smile

Today from the 'Weenies: Halloween Los Angeles

  • Posted on: 21 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

Beth did a series of scents based on memories of the places she's lived at Halloween. I chose Halloween: Los Angeles since most of my girlhood was spent in the beach cities of LA, and this description resonated:

The sky on fire: a strange incense of burning brush, junegrass, tumbleweeds, chaparral, and wild sage.

In the decant: Hm. Smells musty, like a musty steamer trunk.

Wet: Smoky sage.

Dry: Wow, this really does smell like LA during hill fires; that smell hangs over the whole basin.

Verdict: I'm not sure if I want to smell like Malibu in the average autumn, but damn, she sure nailed it. How do she DO that?

Today from the 'Weenies: Pomegranate IV

  • Posted on: 20 September 2010
  • By: MeiLin

This year Beth didn't do a Pumpkin Patch; she did pomegranates instead. This is Pomegranate IV:

Pomegranate, cognac, red musk, cocoa, tobacco absolute, star anise, and thyme.

In the decant: Kind of a muddle but for a hint of tobacco and cocoa, afterhint of the star anise.

Wet: Cocoa and tobacco, which is kinda yummy. Tiny bit of the astringency of pomegranate.

Dry: The cocoa is fading. The thyme is present now, with the tobacco.

Verdict: Later. I gotta go pick up teh hubsie.

Later: On full drydown, it's the tobacco, anise and thyme, with the red musk. I never did get the cognac, and the pomegranate is a brief, astringent memory. Nice, quite nice really, but I can live without it. The decant is plenty, and I'll hold onto it.


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