Sunday, May 31, 2015

Blog Plan and Results

(originally published at New Stories and not really relevant here, but I wanted to save the comments)

Wow, three months already. The response to my blogs has been great so far. Thank you so much for all the support. The views, the comments, the e-mails … it’s all more than I expected.

Woo hoo!

Starting on Monday 6/1, I’ll be posting two new stories a month. These stories will appear on the 1st and 15th of each month. In between, I’ll try to post other content. And over at The Cave, the two stories a week schedule continues through October.

Wait, is that enough ME?

I know some of you want a new story every day and others can't keep up with the weekly schedule I'm posting now. However, as much as I want to be reader-centric, the new schedule is ultimately about me. I think this is what I can manage on a long-term basis. Two stories a month is a pace of 24 stories a year. That's a lot.

Ben can finally relax, Route 69 wraps up Monday

I want to keep a reliable schedule. This pace should enable me to guarantee new stories on a regular basis through 2016 at the least.

The battles will keep on going

So, I didn't post Blog Results earlier, because I found something I liked better. You might have noticed that I added two gadgets to the bottom of the blog ... most popular posts all-time and most popular posts past 30 days. I thought about adding this to the side, but it cluttered it up too much.

Jae IS a beast, with the two top stories

Anyway, now its out there, so I don't really need to post it. You guys can all see what's trending.

A few things jump out at me ...

Page Views - New Stories: May's numbers are 20% over April's. I'm looking at it through 30 days and both months had 13 posts, so it's a fair comparison. That either means I'm getting more visitors or the content was better and worth re-reading. Either one works for me.

Page Views - The Cave: The total numbers are down from March and flat from April, but I posted fewer stories, so on a per story basis, I'm actually up a lot. In March, I posted 16 stories, with 11 of them being split in half (meaning two views per story), and 2 non-story posts. In April, I posted 12 stories, with only one divided in half, and 1 non-story post. In May, I posted 8 stories, all single posts, with 5 non-story posts. So quite a huge difference. Being flat is cool with me.

Characters: Interestingly, the feedback from the original posts back in Bard's group is very indicative of popularity. Beau and Xaq/Spartan stories have quickly risen to the top, reflecting the positive feedback I received on them. I've written multiple stories for both and they're definitely my most frequent secondary characters.

You're a champ, Beau!

Pump it, Xaq, you've got more work to do

Variety: There's a place for doing things a little differently. So far, my lone Superhero story is the biggest Cave story by a mile. It's slightly unfair to compare it to re-posts, because it's a new story to most of my readers, but it holds up even against new stories. And Abuse of Power is a hit. It's funny how much I questioned that story, even to the point of almost holding it back to re-read and re-write it. I’m not the best judge of my own work apparently.

You love sexy superheroes

I need to figure out what's next

Sean suffered for your amusement

Reviews: These remain popular non-story content, trending above the Casting posts. Both Guido posts (here and here) and the RHW review were highly viewed and commented on. UCW, not so much, but it's early. For some reason Google is not ranking my review of Guido vs. Superman correctly, but it's actually my second biggest post ever. I was worried that my comments weren’t very timely, but it seems like that’s not a huge deal.

Guido is a winner!

Yeah, we can't get enough!

You like reading about Dash and the RHW guys, too

Based on the results, you want to see more!

Moving forward, I do have a plan, but plans can change. I’m already taking notes of characters, stories and themes that you want to read and re-read. I’ll be adding, accelerating and adjusting based on comments, so please keep them coming!

Thanks again for reading what I write. I appreciate it!



  1. Alex R:

    So where do I start with this post? Hmmm LOL Well first things first. Dang those images hit my senses like back to back to back etc...Starting with the first one which I dont think we have yet to see in the Cave...Am I right?Then Cody..My Lord. Beau, Spartan, Somehow they look better mix like that! We need a Cave Rumble!
    Regarding the stories, its understandable. Im one of those that is more on the more the merrier but Im grateful for each and everyone and try to comment on all of them to show my appreciation.
    Regarding the gadgets! Ive been going through them since I found them. I think its super interesting where peoples eyes are going to. No surprise on who are on the top positions, Beau, Spartan, Riddle, Bane. A bit surpised that Jeff's stories are not a bit higher but he was against stiff competition. I guess this is the characters wrestling for our affection and attention and we determining the winners. Dang it feels good!
    Even though abuse of Power is not part of the regular Alex Miller Universe, it was so different that it caught my attention, as well as other peoples.
    One of the challenges that I imagine you must have is responding to our comments, which I personally find really awesome on your part.

    So some questions, are these some images or storylines we are going to see in the future? Is Nightwing in our future? Someone Im looking forward to seeing is your alternate version of Robin. That would be interesting.
    I think that the demand youre receiving is a testament to your storytelling, your great communication with your fans and collaborators plus the great artowrk.
    Looking forward to more of your great work!

    1. Well, I appreciate guys taking time to comment, so the least I can do is respond.

      All the images are new. Some are ones that I didn't think could ever "fit" in a story, others are just hot. None are specific to anything in the future, although I am tempted to make Dash Decker into one of my characters. I just don't know if it'd be weird, since he's Dash ...

      I think to appreciate Jeff you need to read Route 69 from the beginning. What I think drove Jeff to be uber-popular was the first time he narrated in Fort Worth. So newer readers might not be reading or re-reading his posts.

      Nightwing is definitely a character you could see in the future. I'm really trying to solve the superhero thing and figure out what to write in that genre. Superman and Nightwing are at the top of my list.

    2. Alex R:

      By the way Miller, I love the captions on the images! My favorites, Beau's, Spartan's and the last for Dash! So detailed!

  2. I know that you are wrapping up the stories for Ben and Jeff with the Route 69 series. I am gonna miss those characters! Your writing was so well done that a reader can eventually relate and care about them. I hope you will bring them back again maybe in other stories you write. But keep up the good work!

    1. Appreciate the compliment! Both Ben and Jeff will return eventually. It's just their year-long road trip adventure that's winding down.

  3. Its weird Route 69 is ending but it feels like a new chapter for the blog. Im excited to see whats next is a new series going to replace Route 69 eventually? Going off the two pictures i hope it is a Superhero story and i hope you figure out a way to do it. It does sound like a tricky task. Do you have an idea ir layout so far? I would think it would be a Hero vs Villian series though having them wrestle instead of fight seems complicated task (If you want them to wrestle and or have them need s reason to wrestle). It woulf be cool to see nightwing and superboy be the main characters like Cody and Jay being batman and Superman but im rambling thoughts now haha.

    The Blog Results seem intresting butbim guessing i cant see them because im on mobile. Il have to check it out sometime. Im sad for two stories a konth just because i like to read your stories as soon as there out but i understand how hard it is to pump these amazing stories out so i can be patient haha.

    Overall Thank you Alex for doing this much your stories are always great to read and taking time to reply to our comments is always nice to see. Im looking forward to what you have planned for us readers this year!

    1. Thanks! I am trying to solve the superhero conundrum.

      I am announcing a new wrestling series on Thursday, but it won't debut until fall. This will be a Cave summer, with action featuring new characters, old characters and even some drama for our guys.

  4. Great statistics, and it's equally great to hear that the blogs are going well for you!

    It'll certainly be exciting to see what you deliver to your fans over the coming months. And it's nice to know that you'll be going at your own pace. 24 is certainly a lot in a year, yeah, especially for the excellent quality you've given each tale.

    Thanks as always!

    1. Thanks. Low expectations help the results look good, too. ;)

      I was able to do weekly, because I had so much backlog, but we've caught up basically to my inventory. The next story is the last one I sent Bard back in January before I decided to do my own thing. I still think this is doable. I'm traveling for work a lot this month and I get a lot of writing done on planes (intros and action layouts) and in hotel rooms (the sexy parts).

    2. Alex R:

      That last sentence made me laugh Alex. The planes and hotel rooms.

    3. In an example of art imitating life, I actually have an upcoming story where the intro is set on a plane and the sexy parts happen in a hotel room. I didn't have to stretch too far for that one.

    4. Alex R:

      Well life is conspiring to give you material for inspiration! LOL. Hopefully you will meet one of these guys by accident while travelling? That would be amazing lol.