Tuesday, September 9, 2008

"I've just finished reading Stay"

From: Pat Combs

I don't really do this--well maybe I do now, write to writers I like. I have followed your work since Ammonite. I read Stay AFTER Always, so I'll probably re read Always. Your work fascinates me not only because it's such good work and so interesting and you write about women but also because right now it made me even more homesick. You see, I'm from SC and have spent a lot of time in Atlanta and Asheville. I moved to Nashville in 1995 then to Misissippi just south of Memphis in 2005. Now I'm in CA.If it weren't for my honey, I wouldn't be here. I do like the Bay Area but I'm in Turlock and mostly away from trees and mountains where I can almost walk to them and walk into the woods whenever I want, The up side is that there is still a bit to explore out here, haven't been up to your neck of these particular woods just yet. But thanks so much for taking me home for awhile, and for having the girls win!

You're welcome. I hope Always is as much fun the second time around as the first. But why did you read it before Stay? Have you read The Blue Place, or Slow River? (I recommend reading for free online the first chapter of any book you're thinking of buying--mine are all on my website--then you'll know if you'll like it or not. No sense wasting money.) The reason I ask is that I'm curious about how readers find my books, and then once they've read and liked something, how they, you, go about finding the rest. Do you go to the website and then read my novels in chronological order? Do you order whatever you can find in your local library database, reading on a catch-as-catch-can basis? Do you have an wishlist and get what you're given, or what?

Basically, I'm curious about how readers use my website.

I've been looking at it the last couple of days, and thinking. My friend Dave Slusher built the first Official Nicola Griffith Website in 1995 and I started getting, and answering, questions right away. Wow. Ask Nicola questions going back thirteen years... Unfortunately, most of the stuff in the AN Archives isn't dated (much of it isn't sorted at all, just lumped in the 'Not Yet Archived' folder) but you can work out what year it is by what I'm talking about. For example, Bending the Landscape: Fantasy came out in hardcover in 1996 and in one post (scroll down) I'm talking about it 'coming out next year'. So that's a clue.

I admire what Kelley is doing on her blog every Friday, but I quail at the thought of following suit. If I did three ANs a day, it would probably take years to get them all up and, well, life is too full even now. Besides, I don't even know if that's a good use of my time. What do readers hope for from a writer's site? What would you like more/less/different of? Would you rather I did new stuff or found a way to start digging out the old?

Having said that, there really is a humongous pile o' stuff over at the old Ask Nicola area of my website. But I have a search function. It doesn't seem to make sense to me to sort this stuff out when Google or Yahoo or whatever can fish out what you want whenever you want it. (My website currently uses Yahoo.)


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