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Posts Tagged ‘blogging’

Have you ever wondered what the numbers in the diary title refer to?  Unless you’re terribly unobservant you’ve probably realized that each week’s number is the same as the Links column which follows it; that’s because they both refer to the week rather than the number of entries in that category (which for both is somewhat below 500).  In other words, this is the five hundredth week of this blog.  Every day for the last 500 weeks I’ve published a new column, and even though many are now news columns, link collections, or adaptations of Twitter threads, that’s still an awful lot of essays (over 3500 now, altogether).  I’ve never been paid for any of it, nor have I paywalled or intrusively-monetized the site, and I don’t intend to; however, I think it’s time I got at least some compensation for an awful lot of time, effort and brainpower.  That’s why I’ve started gathering my best work into collections; The Essential Maggie McNeill, Volume I came out last week, and you can buy it on Amazon; if you prefer a signed copy, I just got a box in yesterday and I’ll be adding it to my store today.  I’d appreciate it if those of you who appreciate my writing would both buy it and review it, because that’s how things get marketed on Amazon.  And now that I’ve figured out how to turn preparing these collections into a routine, I should (with any luck) be able to turn them out on a regular basis.  I’m already almost halfway through with the primary edit for Volume II, and Shannon Reeves & I have already planned the next cover; I don’t foresee any difficulty in getting it out in April as planned.  Then I’ll start compiling my next project, Ask Maggie, a two-volume collection of my advice columns, followed by a compilation of all my harlotographies and, if there’s sufficient demand, a third volume of The Essential Maggie McNeill, collecting my best essays from 2016-2019.  With any luck I can start making an appreciable income on books every month; if even one breaks out into general notice, the rest will follow.  And the more income I can be sure of every month, the more energy I can put into writing and speaking.

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Lately, I’ve received several requests from escorts, especially mature ones, asking how they can move toward the business model I’ve built, namely eschewing formal advertising altogether and just relying on guys who contact me because of my blogging, Twitter, articles, books, video interviews, podcast appearances, etc.  And I’m always hesitant to even try to answer such questions because, though I often play at being terribly conceited and full of myself, it’s always done with enough of a smile and a wink that most people know it’s a tease (at least, I hope they know).  In reality, it took a very long time for me to accept that I was even attractive, much less a bona fide sex symbol, and I’m still not really comfortable with discussing that status as a factual thing; as a result, I find it difficult to answer the question “How can I market myself as you do?” by stating the true and factual answer: “Be Maggie McNeill”.  No, I’m not being facetious; that really is the truth.  By the time I started escorting full-time at the age of 33, my personality was already pretty firmly established in all of its unconventional, intense, neuroatypical, compulsive, fiery glory, and trying to hide or disguise that personality would’ve been almost as difficult as trying to get a new head.  From the time I was a stripper I’ve never made any effort to “round my shoulders” as my old friend Dr. Helena put it, in other words to soften my edges and cool my fire so as to be less threatening to men.  Some men love my strength and fury, but a larger number are intimidated by them; that’s just something I’ve had to accept as the price of being who I am.  As I’ve explained before, aside from the occasional nude selfie or the like, I’ve never really done anything solely for marketing purposes; astute readers may have noticed that my ads on various escort ad sites are always plagiarized from one another, because I find it much too difficult to find new ways to praise myself.  I didn’t start this blog to market myself as an escort; remember, for the first five years I pretended to be retired!  No, I started it to educate people about sex work and speak about what I believe in, and I started Twitter to promote the blog.  Then the interviews, speaking gigs, books, etc, all followed as natural consequences of that, and eventually I realized there was no point in hiding my identity from potential customers when it was pretty clear that, in our current surveillance state, the “authorities” already knew who I was anyhow.  In other words, I didn’t go looking for fame; it just sort of happened to me, and business (plus the likely attention of evildoers) followed close behind.  Simply put, I can’t possibly tell you or anybody how to get to where I’ve found myself because it wasn’t the result of any kind of brilliant and well-considered plan; it just kinda happened as a result of the choices I made, and those in turn were just outgrowths of who I am.  I realize “Be Maggie McNeill” is useless as career advice to anyone who isn’t already Maggie McNeill, but I’m afraid it’s all I’ve got.

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Those of you who follow me on Twitter probably noticed that I started tweeting awfully early Saturday morning, and awfully late on Sunday afternoon.  That’s because I flew out on Saturday for an overnight with one of my favorite gentlemen, and was too busy enjoying my visit to tweet until I got to the airport to come home on Sunday.  And it was such a lovely and memorable visit that I managed to stay completely calm on the way back even when it looked like I was going to be pushed off of my flight due to what I believe to have been a mass invasion of conventioneers or some such.  But apparently Hermes is happy with me right now, because I got on both legs of my return trip despite that.  Even better: it looks like I’m going to be seeing a lot more of this particular gent than I have in the past, and that makes me very happy for all the reasons you might expect (and a couple more I won’t mention).  On top of that:  As I mentioned yesterday, The Essential Maggie McNeill, Volume I is out!  If you want an autographed copy, I’m going to be adding that to my store very soon (likely tomorrow, because I have a Who night with Lorelei tonight).  I’m not going to jinx things by dwelling too long on how well things are going for me right now, but I had to at least share the highlights with y’all, and hope I have plenty more like them this year!

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At long last it’s finally here!  I first mentioned my plan to write The Essential Maggie McNeill in my New Years’ Eve column for 2013, before many of the essays which are included in the final version were even written.  At that time I imagined I’d have it done by summer of 2014, but of course I decided to do a book tour during that time instead, then one thing led to another.  By the end of ’14 I had a title but nothing else; after March of ’15 the project sort of fizzled and by the time I mentioned it again over a year later I was already working on The Forms of Things Unknown.  Then it was two years after that (ie, about 18 months ago) before I finally started working on it in earnest, and I mention in the foreword that I wrote it on July 9th, 2018…at which time I told y’all that it’d probably be available in August.  Unfortunately, I’m not nearly as good with graphics as I am with words, so though the text was quite ready by August, I could not manage to create a cover that worked (though you may recognize the photo in this mention of the project).  Because I’m very competent at most things, I’ve never really learned how to deal with tasks that are difficult, and I’m not proud to say that my usual strategy for coping with such things is to put them off and hope something changes.  A year ago I hit upon the idea of letting someone else do the cover, but didn’t know who; Chester Brown has been busy with a big project of his own, and I don’t want to keep imposing on him anyhow (though I will when it comes time to publish my next fiction collection, Lost Angels).  Finally in November I decided to get Shannon Reeves, the young Canadian artist who did the artwork for The War on Whores; Paul Johnson put me in touch with her and she was able to design and create a lovely cover in a very short time!  Now here’s the good news:  we’ve already got a plan for the cover of volume II, and it’s already formatted and waiting for editing.  So barring some kind of disaster, that one should be ready in April, and Shannon’s already agreed to do covers for two collections of my answers to reader questions which I hope to get out in summer and autumn.  Yeah, I know, I don’t have a great track record on these, but once I get into a groove I’m usually fine.  In the meantime, y’all can inspire me by buying volume I at Amazon; the Kindle edition is here if you prefer that, and autographed copies will also be available on my store by the end of this week!

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Back Issue #78

Arbitrary social conventions have no more resemblance to real morality than pantomime horses have to thoroughbreds.  –  “Heart of Gold

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Diary #494

I’ve been busy with Christmas preparations lately, not the least of which is preparing as many columns as I can in advance so there’s no pressure on me to do so during the holidays.  Normally I have about ten columns “in the pipe” at any given time, though it often drops a bit lower when I travel; right now I’m at 18, and hope to keep it there until I head to Sunset on Monday.  I plan to stay there until January 2nd, and to be fairly lazy while there except for cooking and helping Grace to build the bookshelves for my living room.  It will be nice to have some time alone with her; we haven’t really had much of that over the past five years.  But Jae left for a vacation with a friend in Australia yesterday, and Chekhov is leaving to visit family on the 27th, so Grace and I will have the days leading up to the New Year for the bookcase project, talking, and getting stoned together.  That may not sound very exciting to you, but as I wrote a few weeks ago, I have learned to appreciate the quiet times in my life.  And time spent with a good and beloved friend has a special joy all its own.

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Diary #491

Unlike last week, which only seemed quiet, this week was genuinely quiet.  And you know what?  It was hard to be upset about that, and I didn’t really try.  Some writing, a couple of nice sessions with regulars, getting my hair and nails done, doing a fun podcast that I’ll tell you about when it drops, planning Thanksgiving, doing a little shopping and hiring someone to help me finish a long-delayed project; that about sums up the productive portions of the week.  Otherwise, I actually managed to do some light reading (!!!) and have made some new additions to my wishlist (if you’re considering getting me a Christmas present), and I did a bit of philosophizing while stoned that might make it into a future story or philosophy column.  Tomorrow I’ll be driving out to Sunset in the evening, and then the feast on Thursday and tree-trimming on Friday; with any luck, I won’t have anything more exciting than that to tell you about in next week’s diary.  Except for reminding you of my toy drive, which is always exciting.

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