Tag Archives: business

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone! And welcome back to the blog. I’m rejuvenating the blog this year, and I have many exciting things to come. Many of them are things you already know about, but there will be some new things, as well.

First of all, I’ll do a minor refreshing of the design. I’ll make it look more bookish. Second, more of my own writing on this blog. Third, a desire to do some collaboration with others. And fourth, a bit more of an integration with my YouTube channel.

But I think the biggest thing is that I’m going to concentrate a lot on writing. In particular, Ariadne and short stories. I really need to focus on the main reason for this blog, my writing.

Another thing I’d like to do with YouTube is profile booktubers (book vloggers) who I subscribe to, and think you should watch if you’re interested in that kind of thing.

I’m going to leave you tonight with a video of mine, which is all about the year 2018. It’s all about plans related to my writing, YouTube, and business. While watching, I’d like you to think about what your plans are for 2018. Let me know what they are in the comments section.

Happy New Year!!

The Future of This Blog and More

Have you noticed how quiet I’ve been? I think I lost my way. But never fear, I am coming back and stronger than ever. There are going to be some changes around here, some streamlining, and a much stronger focus.

I started I Read Encyclopedias for Fun to review books and use as a means to launch my writing career. Somewhere along the way, I started talking about other things, stopped writing, and even stopped reviewing books. The only thing that really kept going was Authors Answer, which I haven’t updated in quite a while.

The last three months have been a trying period. So many things have happened that took priority. Surgery (not me), health issues (not me), employment issues (me!), a new puppy, and a complete reassessment of what I want for myself and my family in terms of business and creative endeavours. I haven’t been very active in the blogosphere, as I’m sure you’ve noticed. That will change.

This blog is very important to me, and important to my future in writing. But this goes back to early 2012, and the whole reason I started this blog. As a platform for me to showcase my writing, talk about the publishing industry, and, this is extremely important, make like-minded friends. I feel I did the friend thing, and I am happy for all the people who have helped out and contributed to this blog in Authors Answer.

But I should get to the point. What’s going to happen?

The Blog

The blog will be given a mild makeover. Actually, the theme will stay the same, I’ll just redo the banner. I want it to focus more on the book and writing aspect of things. The topics I write about will change. Actually, they’ll be more focused on the core of this blog: writing and books. I’m going to take the time and actually write fiction. I will talk about the writing process. I will talk about my writing progress. I will give little insights into what I’m doing in my writing. I will talk about world building once again. This is a very important and interesting topic to me.

Authors Answer is going to go on an indefinite hiatus. It’s become increasingly difficult to think of topics to talk about every month. It may come back in the future. Actually, I want it to come back in the future, as it’s been a staple on this blog for three years. I think it needs new and fresh ideas, though. There are three posts I still have to make, and I’ll be doing them on every Friday for the rest of this month. Unfortunately, due to all of the events that have happened since summer ended, I didn’t take the time to get my traditional “big authors” to contribute to the anniversary question. This time, it’s only focusing on the core contributors of Authors Answer, and to be honest, they deserve the spotlight. I can’t thank the contributors to Authors Answer enough. You don’t know how much I’ve appreciated you all.

Expect to see a bit of an integration between my main YouTube channel and this blog, as well. But it’s nothing new. I plan to post each of my book-related videos to this blog, but I will have a lot of things to say, as well. I won’t just post the videos. They’ll be a part of a blog post, not the purpose of the blog post.


That takes me to my other creative outlet, YouTube. I’ve been focusing a lot on my channels, especially in the past couple weeks. I have three channels that I will be uploading to regularly. Only one of those channels will be talked about on this blog regularly, though. In case you don’t know about them, here’s your chance to discover them.

Jay Dee Archer is my self-named channel, and it is my book/writing/scifi/fantasy channel. I do talk a lot about Star Trek and things like that, but that’s my main non-bookish series (except the Japan videos). This is the channel that I will be posting videos of, but only the book-related videos (except Star Trek). That is actually my “official” author’s channel, so it is highly relevant to what I talk about on this blog. The reason I will continue posting my Star Trek videos here is because that series is a huge influence on my science fiction writing. It’s been an important part of my life since I was a kid, and I will not stop talking about it. Anyway, click on the link at the beginning of this paragraph to go to my channel and subscribe.

Science: Not Just a Theory is my second channel, and the one that requires the most resources and time to produce videos. As a result, I’ll only be doing one video a week for now. I don’t want to take too much time away from my writing, but this channel requires a lot of research and plenty of editing. The main focus is space, but I will talk about other sciences, as well. It’s also the channel that has the largest potential for growth on YouTube, and as a result, could be a major source of income for me. While the prospect of it becoming an actual business for me is quite possible, I do this channel because I love science and want to promote the importance of it to people, as well as show how it can be very interesting.

Tommy and Dad is my third channel, and this is a more relaxed family vlog featuring my daughter and I. I’ve started vlogging on it just this past week, and hope to maintain regular uploads at a pace of around videos per week. This channel requires the least amount of time to edit and produce videos, so I can do them more frequently. I don’t do anything fancy. Just record, edit the clips together, and post to YouTube. It’s more of a fun thing for my daughter and I, but it also has a lot of potential. If you’re interested in seeing a bit about my life with my daughter, then check it out!


I am taking a business-like approach to a lot of things now, because I want to provide a secure future for my family. But it’s also important to enjoy doing what I do. I don’t write or make YouTube videos for money, but if I can focus and make it into a business, then I will. Over the past year, I’ve been doing a lot of research on SEO (search engine optimization), marketing, and promoting. I need to do a lot more to become good at it, though. The promotion of this blog, my writing, and my YouTube channels is important, and I will do my best to get them out there for people to discover. At least I won’t be spammy about it.

There are other avenues I’m looking at. For my science channel, I’m using Patreon, which I have yet to promote. I’m going into Patreon not as a way for me to ask people for money. No way. Wrong approach, and I definitely don’t like that way. It’s a business platform, as well as a community I want to develop. I’ll be offering value to it. There will be perks for Patrons, and depending on how much a Patron contributes, the perks increase. It will also allow me to improve the videos and devote more time to both making videos and writing. As the channel is educational, I believe it has a lot of value for people. There are exclusive benefits to being a Patron, such as behind-the-scenes videos, input into the production of the videos, private discussions about science, and opportunities for discounted merchandise.

And that brings us to merchandise! I’ll be opening a Cafe Press store to sell science, education, and literary themed merchandise. You might want a mug, or maybe you want a t-shirt. I’ll have those and more. I hope to launch the store in the next couple months.

What do you think?

So, what are your thoughts about this? What kind of merchandise are you interested in? Do you have any video ideas for any of my channels? And what kind of bookish/writingish (I made that up) blog posts would you like to see in 2018? Leave me a comment! All the feedback you have is greatly appreciated.

My Master Plan for the Year

With February coming to a close soon, our last month in Japan is fast approaching. Things are changing rapidly. I need to plot a course of action for the future. There are many things to consider, and not everything will be set in stone. But I do have a plan for the rest of the year.  This is it.

Our Move to Canada

Until March 22nd, I’ll be working still, but also packing and cleaning at the same time. Everything must be completely packed and everything must be ready to be taken out of the apartment by March 23rd. That’s the day we move out. We will spend the next couple days cleaning the apartment from top to bottom while our daughter stays with her grandparents. From the 26th to 29th, we have some free time to meet friends, go places we want to see for the last time while living in Japan, and restaurants we want to eat at once more. March 30th is the day we leave Japan. We’ll arrive in Vancouver the same day, although it will be at an earlier time (time travel!). And then it’s on to Vancouver Island for a week visiting family and sightseeing. We’ll then arrive in Edmonton and move in to my sister’s house.

The First Week in Edmonton

There will be a lot to do while my sister has a week off to help us run around and get things done. First order of business is to get my Japanese driver’s license and driving record translated at the Consul-General in Calgary. I need photo ID as soon as possible. I’ll then get my license changed to an Alberta license. During the rest of the week, I need to arrange health insurance for myself and my daughter, as well as change address at my bank, get my daughter’s social insurance number set up, and get her registered for kindergarten. My wife’s permanent residency will come, but not sure when. Once it does arrive, she’ll also need to have her health insurance and social insurance number set up.

Employment and Education

I already mentioned in yesterday’s video (see this post) about what I’d like to do for a job. I’m interested in working at a travel agency, bank, book store, or teaching English. To teach English, I need to get my CELTA, which is an ESL teaching certificate through Oxford University. It’s a six week course that I can do on the weekends.


April will be busy, but I think I’ll be able to get back into writing by May. I’m going to focus on writing every day at that point. I want to finish Journey to Ariadne this year and start outlining the first novel of Ariadne. I’ll also be working a lot on planning a nine part science fiction series, which consists of novellas, rather than full novels.


I will be setting up my account at YouTube for monetization, which means I’d get paid by YouTube for advertising on my videos. I’ll get that done after I set up a US dollar account for YouTube and Amazon. Best to keep that separate from my regular account, because I’d need to keep track of American income for tax purposes. I don’t expect it to amount to much this year, though.

I will continue working on videos chronicling our move to Canada and our adjustment to life there. I will also do all 30+ videos about Japanese sightseeing, as well as a new series on what it was like to live in Japan. That will be based on questions that have been asked to me on this blog. I also plan to focus on writing and book videos.


Pretty much everything will continue as usual on this blog. However, I do have the planned weekly flash fiction series to start up, hopefully in May. I’ve seen some interest in it, so that’s great. I also have plans to get guests for Authors Answer. We will see who will be guests.

Official Author Website

I should consider getting a domain name. Also, I plan on getting a lot of reference material up on the official website as I write Journey to Ariadne. I’m hoping to also do up some concept sketches and have them on the website.

Language Studying

This is more of a personal thing, rather than anything related to business. I hope to completely finish the Esperanto course on Duolingo, then get back to French, then Spanish. It would be nice to get those done this year. After those languages, probably going into 2017 and beyond, I’ll work on German, Norwegian, and Russian. But I also want to learn Greek, Dutch, and Italian.

There’s a lot to do this year. I don’t think this plan is particularly ambitious. It’s realistic and achievable. My goal is to complete every aspect of it. What do you think? Please leave your comments below.

Amazon… A virtual marketplace, or Big Brother?

While this doesn’t change my intention to publish with Amazon, it does make me have second thoughts about putting my reviews on Amazon (I haven’t yet, but I do on my blog and Goodreads).

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A couple of weeks ago I read the third installment of a series I really loved. I will refrain from sharing the name of the novel and its author.

Like any reader, as soon as I finished reading, I wrote my review. When I tried posting it on Amazon (I did buy the eBook, just like any normal and decent human being would), I received a rather concerning email.

I will not share the screenshot of the email as it does contain the title of the book and name of the author. In its place I have copied the body of the email below.

Dear Amazon Customer,

Thanks for submitting a customer review on Amazon. Your review could not be posted to the website in its current form. While we appreciate your time and comments, reviews must adhere to the following guidelines:

Here I was, thinking I had included an…

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