Patrick E. McLean : Just what it says on the tin.

A Post Containing Failure, Humility and Hope

So, I’m a little depressed. By the numbers, the revival of the Seanachai is a pretty abject failure. In the six months since I’ve resumed doing a weekly episode, I’ve seen no listener growth. It sucks to put a lot of energy into something that doesn’t give energy back.

In a strange way the suck of this is heightened by how well everything else is going. I have had some great successes this year. I’ve sold a bunch of books. I’ve written a couple of books. And my personal life and business life is really going great.

But still, it sucks to fail.

The only questions that are worthwhile to ask at this point are “Why?” and “What to do about it?”


For sure, the Seanachai is hard to spell. It’s also not hooky or shareable. The new ones have been thoughtful and personal. Thoughtful doesn’t play real well on the internet. Listen to this podcast because its, non-specifically interesting. Sure, I’ll remember that.

So the lesson here is that it’s a great add-on for people who already like what I do, but it’s not a good thing to introduce people to what I do. What really sucks is that introduction is my problem at this point. In terms of writing, I’m mired in the vast swampy middle. I’ve had some things go very right. And my work is good enough for bigger arenas. The question is how to stand out against all the noise? I recognize that this is not entirely in my control. All I can do is keep making the best stuff I can and get it out there.

What to do about it?

Less, I think. Less. The Seanachai stays my personal author podcast. II’ve got a new book that I’m going to release (as soon as it’s recorded), so it will go out on the feed. So will, monthly or so updates of how things are going. But weekly? No. Besides, it’s not even topical.

But I do make nice audio. Which means, that perhaps another, serial podcast type-thing would be good. I have some ideas, not the least of which is a non-fiction book, working title, “How to Succeed in Evil: The Self-Help Book You Want to Buy, but Are Afraid to.” It’s a collection of evil schemes through the ages. Less, “Giant Laser in Space” and more “Opium Wars” and “Mercantilism.” I think that’s a little more buzzworthy.

What’s next?

Vacation. I’m going to the beach for a week. Sloth, Gluttony, Sunburn, all of it. As Rimbaud said, “Sometimes it is best to lie dead drunk in the sun.”

When I get back, I’m going to start recording the audiobook version of my latest novel, “The Soak” I got it back from the proofreader and it’s ready for prime time. And that last phase of editing where I read it aloud and fix all the crappy little things I can’t stand when I hear them said. I’ll be podcasting it, never fear. Then it will be released in physical and ebook format.

I’m also going to put out another book this year. I now have close to 90k words of fresh ‘Evil. And even thought I’m going to need another 60k or so to get the first new book done (For some reason I always start with the wrong book!) I’m optimistic about getting that done in 2015.

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