I’ve retired! That is, I’ve finished working as a translator and as a regular writer of teaching material. I’m not drawing a pension yet, that won’t be possible till January 2024, but I am free now to spend more of my time writing and creating as I choose. Among other things, this will mean changing things here at TheSupercargo.
This isn’t the first time. There were Big Changes here nine years ago when I tried to split up the website into different sub-sites. Then seven years ago (with the help of David Bowie), I turned to face the changes again, bringing everything back under one roof. There have been a few other gear shifts over the years that I didn’t feel I needed to call attention to, but the current changes do feel qualitatively different and worth a brief post of their own.
First of all I’m going to be putting more effort into social media, though for commercial rather than social purposes. I’ve decided to step away from my anti-social media position and embrace the tech. Or at least to try it out. To this end I’m setting up an Author Page on Facebook and a dedicated YouTube channel. Here’s the statement I’m putting into the YouTube Channel’s About page. There’ll be something similar on the FB page too.
Statement of intent
Hi, I’m John, an emerging, creative writer. (I hope I am creative, I hope I am emerging.) I aim to post regularly about my writing, the practice and craft of writing, about developing as a writer, about publishing, and about building a post-retirement income stream from writing and writing-adjacent products.
This channel is starting from scratch, so tag along and see where it goes – or sit back and watch it crash and burn. Either way, I hope you’ll be entertained.
I’ll be using my social media engagement as a guide rail to keep me working on my writing. After 15 years of trying, I still haven’t written even the first draft of a novel all the way to the end. That has got to change.
And as I give up my last piece of regular paid work, I want to see if I can supplement the income I expect from my pension through my creativity. Other people seem to manage, why not me? (That question was rhetorical. Please don’t answer!)
Changing the way I interact on-line will have some consequences for this website too. My regular publishing schedule has been weekly on Wednesdays. (With a few exceptions. I took a month off in June.) That is very likely to drop back, perhaps to once a month. Or perhaps there will only be the occasional update. I’m actually considering a separate, much lighter-weight site. TheSupercargo has become so very slow.
But I don’t want to abandon TheSupercargo after all these years. I started it in 2008, roughly at the same time as I thought I’d write my historical novel in a year. (Ha!)
Self-publishing and social media updates
One of the things I’ve learned recently is the importance of having “digital property” for visitors to download. So I’m going to repackage some of my better blog posts in a magazine — TheSupercargo’s Magazine. Coming soon-ish.
Depending on how easy that is to create, I may go on to invite other authors to share some of their writing in subsequent editions. (Note please: This is not a call for submissions.)
I’m also thinking about self-publishing a limited edition of a book of my poetry.
But the most important thing is to get that damn first draft written. The historical novel is on the shelf for the moment. Instead I’m working on a science fiction novel set roughly 500 years in the future. (Mostly because the historical novel is set 500 years in the past.) Chapter 1 is done, chapter 2 is in progress. I’ll put updates on Facebook and Instagram.
I suppose I’d better finish by encouraging you to “Follow me on social media!!!” Except the FB page and YouTube channel are not yet available. As soon as they are, I’ll update this with links.
But that’s me for this week. Thank you for your attention!