Saturday, December 8, 2007

~ the star-dogged sails

My 50th post slipped by without my noticing. 50 posts! And to think I was worried about The Sails being a flash in the pan. I do have a tendency to bounce from minor obsession to minor obsession, but the act of blogging seems to encompass all my curiosities.

Sails of Oblivion has wormed its way steadily into my heart and mind, to a point where it's become major part of my creative effort. I’ve been writing all my life, in one form or another, but never as regularly as this. Certainly, I’ve kept journals, but not for publication – and with Sails I feel like I’m producing real work on an [almost] daily basis. Consequently, I’m keeping my skills properly honed – and that’s a source of satisfaction for me. Writing, like anything, is easier if you do it regularly and often.

I never saw the potential of blogging until I tried my hand at it. It was Steve [Kilbey] who opened my eyes. To quote – If Yeats or Auden were alive today, they’d be blogging. I was doubtful of that at first, but now I’m certain of it, and I really have to thank Steve for giving me that initial impetus, and for giving his readers a heads up in his blog.

He observed that I’d chosen the white on black template he uses for
The Time Being. I explained that, unless I became an html wizard, it was the only one available which looked cool enough and I wasn't being a sniveling plagiarist. He informed me, also, that it’s more energy-efficient than black on white. Apparently, I later heard, if the whole internet was formatted thus, it would lead to a surprisingly large reduction in global carbon emissions.

There’s also the community aspect. It’s satisfying knowing your work’s being read. It’s satisfying having a dialogue with those readers. It’s extra satisfying when they come back. My readership’s still small. Sometimes it surges. Sometimes it falls away, [usually when I’m slack with my posts]. But it is slowly, steadily growing.

I must also thank Alison Croggin of Theatre Notes for advice and for sending readers my way. And Chris Boyd of The Morning After.

And there are definitely a few readers I’d like to thank profusely for helping me keep going - and for making their presence known by commenting. [I love comments. I love comments most of all.] Thank you Amanda, I don’t think you’ve missed a post and I really appreciate it. Also Sue/Lily Was Here, Eek, Matt, Dangerous Meredith and Ann O’Dyne/Bwca. Hugh Marchant too, if you’re out there. And all the silent ones …

I’ve got all sorts of plans for the future of Sails. Aside from the regular posts, I’m going to keep the Eighties diary going and the space adventures of The Orn [next post]. Also, I’ll continue with the exploits of George. You might recall the story of the chairs? Well, there’s plenty of bizarre, recondite material still to be dredged up.

Over a period of five years during the Nineties, I wrote an SF novel called Autopsy Turvy in collaboration with a friend, Adam A Browne. We’re estranged now, which is sad as I dearly loved him, but we spent such an inordinate length of time together at the screen that when we finished with the book we finished with each other. [Though I was slightly peeved that he didn’t invite me to his marriage… Adam?] We started on a Macintosh Classic, then used an LCII, then an LC475 and finally, I think, a G3.

The novel was a monstrous thing. Huge, surreal and lush with weirdness. No one in their right mind would have published such a deranged artefact. However, it was shortlisted for the George Turner Award [for unpublished Australian SF/fantasy novels] but of course someone like Sara Douglas took the prize and all we received was the honour of a brief interaction with Terry Pratchett.

What I plan to do is publish it on the web as a side-blog to Sails of Oblivion. I’ll do it as soon as I've done with Christmas. I’m currently up to my neck in ebay book-selling and have barely even the time to write this.

Anyway, whoever you are, thanks for clicking on me - and now's the time to give me advice, if you have any...

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Chris Boyd said...

I don't know about Yeats and Auden, but I'm pretty sure George Bernard Shaw would be a blogger... a New Age pamphleteer.

I had a big piece in the Financial Review a week or so back, a spread on best reading of 2007. I wanted to mention Sails -- it's right up there in my mind -- but I was restricted to "books". And the column is called Must Have... And, well, no-one can possess a blog, right?

Sails is such a gift. Man, we should be thanking you !

I've gotta say, I've been a bit anxious that you might burn out. So, it's fantastic to read that this is turning into a self-sustaining (thermonuclear) reaction.

Forgive me if I lurk, and don't comment all that often. But I don't want to be any more ubiquitous than I am already! (LOL)

Cheers, and thanks again for the kaleidoscopic variety.


Anonymous said...

Hi Sam, congrats on 50 blogs. I've really enjoyed reading all of them and look forward to more of the space adventures of The Orn, the Eighties Diary and the chairs, you're a great writer Sam, well done!
Love Amanda
P.S. where's that photo of you gone????

Matt said...

Hey Sam . . . no advice from me, apart from keep doing what you're doing.

I really enjoy your 80s-era diary posts and I'm definitely looking forward to Autopsy Turvy.

Your blog is a breath of fresh honesty in an increasingly poseur-ridden blogosphere.

Sam Sejavka said...

Amanda, I put one photo in, looked, hated it, changed it, looked, hated it, removed it. But I will, somehow, find one that I like. I've been putting extra photos in some older posts, too. The Howard Head Pinata is in 'Happy Day.

Chris, what an encouraging little set of words. As I'm certain you know, I fully respect your opinions, and your comment gives me tremendous impetus. Do you agree that blogging is a new form? Pity, though, that it's called 'blogging'... Poetry, Prose, Blogging ... well.. yuk! Pamphleteering - that's an interesting an apposite observation. And one more thing: Am I wrong or is ubiquity not a good thing in the blogosphere? [Now that's a word I like.

Finally, Matt, thank you too for the encouragement. It really does hit home in just the right way. It's strange, but I never thought I'd get so committed... but here I am - committed.