Yesterday I posted about what I see for the future of this blog, where I will be concentrating my efforts – although not exclusively – and what I plan for the future. Today, to brighten up a few dreary Sundays – although the weather here is scorching and I have every intention of going out into the garden in a few minutes for the evening – I thought I’d share a small taste of part of my plans.
Photo Source: Unknown
Anyone who has followed this blog for a while knows that my interests include photography and that I have a certain area which fascinates me more than any other: the self-portrait. This is something which has evolved over many years but, with the advances in technology and the wealth of readily available mirrors everywhere you go has become almost a fashion fad to rival all others. I do not think that I am overstating it when I suggest that everyone who has a smart phone with camera, or who even has a camera has, at one time or another, made a self-portrait. There have even been attempts of late to determine when the first selfie was shot and who shot it, something doomed to failure since most are meant for personal use and, back then, the technology to share – or be shared unwillingly – is a recent phenomenon.
It’s fair to say that after more than four years this blog has gone beyond the creation stage. It has a firm and relatively stable place on the Internet, frequent and regular visitors and a relatively good ranking against other, similar sites. With creation completed, it is once again time to look at how it should evolve further, how the small niche can be expanded and the contents made more interesting. This is, of course, not something which only affects me, every single blog which survives the first three months or longer needs to be constantly looked at, constantly improved and advanced. Getting into a rut later on in blogging life is just as bad as giving up in the first few weeks because there have been no visitors. A blog, the same as any other web site, needs to evolve to retain interest, to farm new markets, to gain new readers.
Photo Credit: Skley – Creative Commons
It’s not that I have run out of things to write about, nor am I likely to in the near future, but perhaps a little concentration on one or two areas might be good, perhaps the introduction of something new too. To be honest a reader might gain the impression I write about far too many things: Social Media; Sex, Lesbian Culture; Travel; Politics; Religion; Europe; Germany; Photography; Books, Writing and Publishing; Life in general. There is no real concentration on one specific area or, to put it another way, there is no single subject area which really stands out as being the strong point, the stable of the whole. Perhaps, in some ways, this is a good thing, but a little introspection, a little thought about the future is always a good thing. No one wants to stagnate, not on the Internet, not in real life. But what exactly is the way forward? What can be done to evolve this blog even further?
Everyone knows that lesbians can’t have children; it’s in the nature of things that when you have sex with other women, children are pretty much not on the agenda. What I find strange is those people who seem to think because you sleep with another woman, because another woman is your whole life, you don’t want to have them. Whereby they clearly overlook the many thousands of married and unmarried single-sex couples, male and female, who do have children and manage to raise them quite successfully. How many surveys have claimed that single-sex parents raise happier children?
Photo Source Unknown: via imgsrc
The thing is, many women simply don’t want children, no matter how sweet and endearing they may be, and by this I don’t just mean lesbians. Are we still at the stage in our evolution where children are the be-all and end-all of a relationship? Is no family complete without them?
Yesterday I wrote about the various means by which a writer can begin their work: by using a provided opening paragraph; by simply writing until the fear of a blank page is gone; by using notes and ideas planned long in advance. Despite my post title, I didn’t write anything about using Titles or Grammar, as absolutely no one has pointed out to me, so I thought I would remedy this and post a few thoughts on these two important areas today.
Photo Credit: bernat… – Creative Commons
The first is, clearly, the Title of a work. If you don’t have the right title, one which fits the work itself, you’re not going to do any damage, as such, but it may well put people off reading what is otherwise an excellent book or story. The title is of great importance: along with the cover – for printed works – it is one of the first things a person sees when browsing. I do it myself when trying to decide which Goodreads books to try to win, which books to take off a store shelf and look at further. Something which is clearly not within my interests, from the title alone, isn’t going to get me reaching out, isn’t going to make me want to check any further. Many people have a working title when they begin, just to keep them on top of things when more than one piece of writing is in the works, others have a fixed idea and stick to it throughout. I tend to be one of these last people: I have planned roughly what I wish to write, even if it doesn’t turn out that way, and seek a title which reflects something of the content. For books, however, a title isn’t always hard and fast; a publisher may well suggest a different idea according to market trends.
I read recently on Twitter an entry by a female novelist about how she begins writing, how she overcomes the fear of a blank page. She says that, rather than planning how to start, she simply sits down and writes whatever comes into her mind for the first ten minutes. This removes the fearsome blank page which, more often than not, baffles many would-be writers unaccustomed to simply planning, ordering their thoughts, thinking up the first lines away from the writing desk, and those with writer’s block. I’ve never tried this method, and I’m not so sure that it would be one which works for me.
Rather, I enjoy planning. I make copious notes throughout the day – and the night – until a set idea for the start of a work comes to mind. This is what I then set down on paper. How it goes from there all depends on my mood: I often do not have a set idea about exactly where a story should go, but let the words lead me, let the ideas come as I write.
Photo Credit: Florian Rathcke – Creative Commons
This has its good and its bad points. It is possible to sit down and write a really good draft over several hours – or days – just as easily as to write yourself into a corner; surrounded by fresh words and with no way out.
Another method I saw recently, again on Twitter, was the opening paragraph method. The writer – or someone else – writes a series of opening paragraphs for a story or book with a lead in of suspense. The idea is that this opening will draw the writer further in to the story and, hopefully, a future reader. An opening paragraph might just be fifty words, but it introduces an idea, perhaps a character too, and some form of scenario. Whoever takes over the writing after that merely needs to expand upon the idea. This actually quite appeals to me, mainly because I have a whole mess of opening paragraphs amongst my notes as well as conclusions, bits and pieces which can be included anywhere and a wealth of wonderful words which I would love to be able to use some time.
Even so, the one method that I have found to work the best is still working with notes and ideas before coming to my desk, before I set pen to paper to really form the ideas into a product. I may well try a few of the other methods sometime, just to see if it brings anything but, for now, I’m happy with what I have and, a moment of joy, it’s working well enough with my new creation.
Love & Kisses, Viki.
The trouble with selfies, aside from the fact that some are really not worth more than a sneer, a sigh or the need to retch, is that there are so many good, sexy, erotic, well created examples, it would be possible to publish a post with ten or so almost every single day, and not repeat a single one, or run out of examples. It remains one of the most intimate forms of photography available – aside from making your own sex-video, but that’s another thing entirely – and, with modern technology, one of the easiest ways for anyone to either express themselves, or show trust and (sexual) affection.
Photo Source Unknown: via imgsrc
Far more than that, for those interested in the social history side of things, in people rather than poses and the erotic, they can be seen as something of a fashion statement, especially when taken in a dressing room or when someone – whether partially clad or not – wishes to show off their own style.
With the initial euphoria over the world cup out-of-the-way, and the German team preparing to return to a celebration in the center of Berlin, some people appear to be putting a completely different light on the win against Argentina – and other teams in the lead up to the final yesterday – and its meaning. The suggestion from this Tweet is that Germany has gained a great deal, in their own estimation, through the win.
To a certain extent this is true: every single country which wins at the world cup, the Olympics or any other major games or contest, has a bolstered ego for a while. Or rather, to be more accurate, the people who belong to that country do. It would have been the same for the English, the Americans, the Argentinians, the Brazilians had they won. For a few weeks, leading up to, during and immediately after, people are on top of the world: they’ve won something major and carved their small niche in history. Can this, though, be placed alongside their standing in the world?
If you’re going to do it right, then do it! As many of you will have noticed, I have a thing for selfies – self-portraits – especially when the women featured are beautiful or sexy! However, I also find some fascination when looking at other selfies – not necessarily the ones with Granma dead in her coffin in the background – and this Tweet caught my attention today:
It’s perhaps not quite as exciting as the recent short film of a man taking a photograph during the Tour de France, where he gets knocked back into the crowd by a cyclist – but you can feel the action. How close are those bulls? Did he make it through? More to the point, did the photo work?
I guess we’ll only find out if he gets caught, or sells the result to a local newspaper.
Love & Kisses, Viki.
I wonder whether seeing a photograph of a beautiful woman, for some people, is more arousing than seeing the woman themselves. It has its advantages: you can stare at it without any feelings of embarrassment for as long as you want; carry it around with you; talk to it! And there is no social stigma attached, when you admire and watch.
For some it is almost natural, they do it without thinking, without any hidden agenda. Biting their lip when concentrating; covering their mouth with a hand; smiling. There are many who can project sensuality without even trying, who can arouse without any form of contact, who can draw attention without meaning to. It is in the nature of things. And so it is with looking, with admiring. An absolutely natural action, when it isn’t taken too far.
I’m not a great one for personal online statistics, although I do mention them sometimes and most certainly keep an eye on my own – especially when a professional SEO with a ranking of over five million offers me better rankings! – but certain statistics are important. Trying to find people willing to pay to have you write about them on your blog means your statistics, your ranking, your reach have to be good. And having a good number of visitors each day does make blogging much more fun, even if your audience is only on your site for a few seconds. They were there, they have seen, that is enough sometimes.
This week, however, I suffered a severe blow to my visitor statistics. Many came here from my Tumblr blog, a collection of over forty-five thousand erotic photographs with seventeen thousand four hundred followers. Came here: past tense. This week, without any warning, Tumblr terminated my account.
Naturally I sent them a mail asking why; asking them to explain themselves; asking them to reinstate my blog on Tumblr or, at the very least, let me have my collection back.
But Tumblr is a big company now. It belongs to Yahoo and, as such, has no need to worry about individual users. Tumblr has become another Facebook, smaller but with the same total lack of customer interest.
My mail remains unanswered, my collection – which is still available through the many thousands of other blogs which shared – is no more. Nearly four years of collecting, of pure erotic enjoyment, gone. I wonder whether the employee who received my mail at Tumblr doesn’t care, or whether they are unable to correct what has happened. I wonder whether they didn’t reply to my mail because they don’t know what happened, but don’t have the courage to admit it. I wonder whether there are humans working for Tumblr Customer Service at all.
In the end it makes no difference. No reply, no collection. How do you make up for the loss of forty-five thousand photographs? How do you find the seventeen thousand four hundred followers again? The answer is simple: you start from scratch with photograph number one of a new collection. So vmichaelis isn’t there any more, but the erotic blog – revised – begins again as vikimfan.
Love & Kisses, Viki.