Of the two stories I published last week, Choices is by far my favorite of the two. It’s richer in terms of emotion, and in terms of provoking thought and response in the reader. Nothing is a surer indicator than the overall stats of those stories on Stories OnLine.
Now, the tone and genre of the stories I write doesn’t perfectly resonate with that of SoL. So, while I’ll have an occasional story which is liked by many of them, I doubt I’ll ever be one of their pre-eminent writers. I’m not quite sure where my stories fit, but if I ever find a site that has the audience my stories want, I’ll pay for a membership or three.
The stories that seem to have some popularity at SoL are Wife/Cuckold stories, BDSM stories, Harem stories and underage/incest stories. Long adventure stories with harem themes seem really popular, and they often contain BDSM. Also, there are several authors who do many short cuckold stories. The underage/incest stories date back to the founding of SoL, when it was formed as a safe haven for that sort of story.
There, that’s your basic market research. Most of what I write is BDSM of some sort of fashion, but the first story I posted there, They Will Know fared very badly. I suspected that, as it’s a breathplay story, and,well, SoL doesn’t include a code category for breathplay.
The second story, The Willing Cuckold, is currently my story with the most number of hits (~1700) of all my stories, and has been up for about a year and a half. Its posting predates the crash of my linux machine, but I think it got me one or two comments, total. On SoL it’s a liked, but not loved story.
I posted Thursdays there back in January. It has about 700 hits, and the same basic rating (but less votes) than Cuckold. Becuase of the title, the slug and the keywords, this story is never going to get hits on search endgines, where Cuckold gets a couple handsful of new hits every week (more if I post a story during that week). Google reminds me that I received two comments on this story, something I’d forgotten until now. It was enjoyable and fun to write, but primarily just a diversion.
That brings us up to the past three weeks when I posted three stories. I posted them all in parallel on this blog. Kadja is currently my highest rated story, and about 360 people have read all four parts; the story itself has almost 1400 hits as of this writing. It’s generally liked and has been added to more people’s private libraries (by an order of magnitude) than any other story, and my favorite author count doubled while it was being posted.
There will be more Kadja, of course, as the novel I was working on last year was based on her. Which gives me a lot of material to turn into short story adventures. Kadja is a fun adventure, and perhaps the thing that fits best into the SoL world that I’ve written. It’s not a harem story, not really, and has a female protagonist, which perhaps sets it outside the norm there. Still, more stories will increase her ratings, and find Kadja a good audience.
Last week I posted two stories which have seen print, and which, to me, are both fantasies: one romantic and one horrible. Of the two, Choices is by far my favorite (and one of my favorite stories to have written). Something About Him always struck me as being too romantic and ideal to be happy with, but it has some power. Something now has the second highest rating, and least number of hits of any of my stories. I’m not sure it got enough votes to display a rating on the main site.
Choices has almost 1000 hits over the past five days, and the lowest rating of any of my stories, in all the ways that the story can be rated. Two people gave it a ‘5’ (of 10) for technical, although I don’t think there are any major grammar, sentence, spelling or plot structure problems with that story. Those people also gave it the lowest rating for plot and appeal.
For both stories, I put an author note at the end, discussing (very briefly) my thoughts on the story, and requesting comments, with promised responses. Something got one anonymous comment, which I can’t respond two. I awoke Thursday morning (the day of Choices’ publication) to two very angry comments. I’ve since gotten 6 or 7 comments of various times. At one point, the ratings on the story dropped down to close to 3, and are now up to 4.1 (with Kadja being at 7). [NOTE: SoL’s ratings are adjusted to fit a curve, so Kadja may have gotten a mix of 8’s and 9’s, but been adjusted down because other stories posted that day got 10s.]
I twittered that I was very pleased with Choices’ reception. I’m not sure it’s a story to like, and feel good about. It’s a dark fantasy about being in a dark place, and choosing to stay there. It’s chilling, as one of my commenters pointed out. Unfortunately, that is not well liked or rated by SoL’s readers.
That’s okay with me. Few artists I know desire mediocrity. Hate me, or love me, but please Goddess don’t ignore me.
This week, in honor of 10 years of living with my wife, I’ll be posting the story that won her to me, despite it’s vile pun. I’m also considering posting three of my earliest, lighthearted works (which comprise a series of sorts) just to confuse people what sort of writer I am.