HI! It’s me! The creator!!!

Umm, I’ve been a busy creator.  I spent a little time working on a concert band composition, but once that was done, I turned my attention back to Lily, and I’ve been really busy with her.  I’ve done a bunch of stuff, so far.  I’ve updated her body model and all the body models of her direct friends.  I also found a way to pose them together that doesn’t involve trying to figure out how to use blender (I need to at some point but it’s ridiculously time consuming), and I created a new cover image from that.  I went back and checked all of the posts for correct dates and categories, and also created series so that each month is in its own series and they can be shown chronologically.  I also spent a little time creating a small wordpress plugin (not for public consumption yet) that actually added some content directly to the end of the post using ACF (advanced custom forms) so I can keep some of the administrivia stuff out of the database.

This is all in preparation for turning Lily into either a book or something similar.

However, that job is barely begun.  I have a lot more stuff to do.  This includes:

  • There are some plot holes in Lily.  I hate that they’re there and I did my very best to avoid them, but it was impossible to completely avoid them because of the nature and scope of the world I built, and also in the progessive (not politically, but literally) way I wrote the story.  There are some plot points that were mentioned and then forgotten (like Lily learning how to make chocolate), and some were a really big deal (like not knowing when Crystal and Diana’s birthdays are).  So I have to find some way of categorizing and then fixing these plot holes.  I don’t know how I’m going to do it yet, there are over 450,000 words, probably approaching 500K now, and, well, there’s just no way I’m going to do it by reading each post and taking notes.  I have to have a more structured way of organizing the story and finding conflicts.  I haven’t yet found a good way of doing this.  I’d like to do it within wordpress, but I’m also wondering at what point the loading time will be far too long.  It’s already almost there.  I need to clear some things out, and I need everything that’s there atm.
  • Worse than plot holes, there has been a major tone shift in the story since it began.  This is partly okay.  Lily started the story as a fifteen year old girl, and she is now well into her eighteenth year, and, well, she and everyone else in the story has grown up.  That’s to be expected.  And, well, let’s be honest, so have I.  I started the story in a very different mental state than I’m ending it, for better of for worse.  But at the same time, there are aspects of the tone shift I’m not too fond of.  She was a very happy, chipper, cheerful girl when I started the story, like when she got drunk on nyquil or called everyone silly-billies, or…  and this is much more difficult to “fix”, if I even can, or if I even want or need to.  Either way, I need to pay some attention to it, and at least find some way to quantify the tone shift.  That will be very hard, and nearly impossible.
  • My attitude on fanservice has shifted a lot.  When I first started the story, I wouldn’t have dreamed of creating fanservice of Lily or any of the characters.  I did create some PG-13 (or even R maybe) parts of the story, mostly involving her and Jack, well, let’s be honest, getting each other off in an age appropriate manner, but I wouldn’t have dreamed of posing any of the characters in a really racy way.  My attitude on that has changed.  For better of for worse, sex sells, and I have a bunch of really beautiful characters I’ve taken a lot of time fleshing out (pardon the pun), and taking advantage of some of that to create a draw, well, that’s “leaving money on the table”, in a sense.  So, I’ve started creating fanservice, and I need to create more.  While i stress that the fanservice is not canon to the story, and the characters may end up doing things in the fanservice that they would never do in the story, I think it’s something that I need to do.  I’ll keep it locked behind a subscriber wall for the time being, but… I feel like it needs to be done.  I’m actually still a little conflicted, but well, it’s the entertainment world we live in.
  • After I’ve closed as many plot holes as I can and adjusted the tone as much as possible, then I’ll have to think of next steps.  I think I want to do a Japanese translation of the site and all of the posts.  This will end up being either a time consuming or expensive undertaking, and more likely, both.  I’ll probably end up doing google translate for the raw translation and then hiring a Japanese translator to go over it and fix any errors.  I actually can speak Japanese conversationally, but not well enough to do this kind of translation.  Yet, anyway.
  • And here’s the worst part:  I’m doing all this work, and still, no one reads it.  I get no hits, no exposure, no money, nothing.  In fact, not only have I never made a cent on this story, it’s cost me literally thousands of dollars to produce and maintain.  Yes, writing the story itself is free.  But there’s web hosting, which adds up, some wordpress plugins that have the functionality I need (the series one, for example, is about $70/year), and I spent about $2500 on a pretty beefy computer that I’ve been using to do the character renderings and (in the past) video creation.  I’ve had this story for three years and it’s made me absolutely no money, and there is no indication that it will ever make me any money.  Worse than that, there is no indication that more than three or four people will ever read it, and that is the worst thing about it.  They say “if you build it, they will come”, and in this case, I built it, and no one’s come.  I’ve shown it to a few people, they said it was cool, and never read a single word.  I sincerely don’t know what to do.  It’s not a perfect story, but it’s a good story, and I don’t know why no one seems to want to give it a chance.  So I need to, somehow, figure out how to fix that, and I just… don’t know.  I really don’t know.  It’s eating me up a bit, if I’m being honest.  Maybe I’m just an incompetent idiot with interesting ideas.  At this point I can’t rule that out.  I even posted it to wattpad, and no one’s even read it there.

So, anyway, that’s what’s going on.  And this is in addition to my other projects.  I intend on writing another composition at some point, and that will take time away from this too.  This could easily be a full time job if I let it, at least for right now, but I already have a full time job, and at least I’m getting paid for that one.  This one… well, I can understand losing money.  Artists or authors rarely actually make money on the things they create.  But making not a single penny, not even in income, but just in revenue?  That’s not only not sustainable, but it’s frustrating and annoying too.  Alas, though, this has always been a project of passion, so I will see it through to the end.  And then probably just forget about it until Lily drops off into obscurity.

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