Drew Hayes on Starting a Web-novel

Drew Hayes, the author of Super Powereds and Corpies, posted on his blog about things to know before starting a web-novel. If you are even thinking about writing a serial novel online or writing one now, I would highly recommend you read it. He even links to my blog post about setting up a serial novel in WordPress.I cannot stress enough #1, the posting schedule. When I started Portal, I followed Drew's lead of updating twice a week. Since his post schedule was Tuesday and Thursday (posting the previous evening), I followed the same schedule. I wanted my story available to his readers while...

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Portal – Chapter 43

Although not all agents in the JTF rated to wear Harris armor, they were all combat trained. Everyone, including the drivers and command staff, were ordered to don armor, standard ceramic plates and Kevlar helmets, and sweep the campsite for colonists. They did actually have a good piece of intel, there were a lot of families with children in the camp. The agent in front signaled to stop with a clenched fist. They were following  an old drain pipe to find the opening, looking for anyone that might be hiding in there. An animal was growling in front. “Brown, this is McIlroy” Michael heard...

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New Year Maintenance

If you are visiting the site, you might see strange links or the wrong menu attached. I'm doing maintenance and re-attaching all the menus and sidebars. If you spotted the Wiki link, that will be coming soon, once I get all my notes together. Only non-spoiler information will be added to the wiki but it will have more background information on people (mundane and Enhanced), places, and items mentioned in the series.

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Captcha Added to Comments

You can thank the spammers for this one. I wanted to leave the comments open and easy but the spammers are taking advantage of it. I've added the Captcha plugin that will require you type in something (usually a number to answer a math problem) to verify you are a person and not a bot. I'm apologize for the inconvenience.If you do have any comments about a certain chapter or the story in general, please do share them. You can always email me at jeff@thepeninthestone.com too. Some emails have been the topics of blog posts.

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Happy New Year!

When I started, I thought I would be lucky to get 50 hits a day by this time. We have far exceeded that number and ThePenintheStone.com is going strong.I received an email yesterday from WordPress about my website. It had various statistics for the year that I would like to share.Canada, the U.K., and Australia were the top non-U.S. countries for views. Denmark, Germany, and Sweden were the top three for non-native English-speaking countries. Thanks. Danke. Tak. Tack.I would like to thank underwhelmingforce, anonymus, Bobby, and Zeta and everyone else for their comments, corrections, and speculations....

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Portal – Chapter 42

Michael looked in the portal and saw Cortex looking back. He could barely see Teams One and Three through Caldwell’s binoculars but it was enough to create a portal next to the Mentalist. Cortex guided the portal to face the right direction and keep it hidden under the berm. Michael did not need a 50 caliber round coming back through the portal at his head. When it was in the right position, Michael closed the portal on his side.  Lady Justice and Lieutenant Caldwell were still arguing over the plan behind him. “No way,” Lady Justice said firmly. “Justice is missing,” Lieutenant Caldwell...

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How to Sell Books from Your WordPress Website

As a followup to my last blog post about setting up a Serial WordPress website, here is more advanced information about creating a marketplace on your site. I use some of these plugins on a site  that sells legal documents to lawyers.If you are interested in adding a shopping cart to your site, I would highly recommend WooCommerce . It is widely supported and free. Shopping carts provide your readers with a traditional eCommerce experience rather than a direct link for payment.If you are selling books online and want to deter piracy, you can use the WP PDF Stamper Plugin by Tips and Tricks...

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Portal – Chapter 41

No one heard when the drone arrived, it was too high. Only Net could see from the target camera since he needed his power to connect to the colony server. Since he was limited with the HQ Stryker damage from Mother Nature, he called up one of the map websites and cross-referenced the location of the drone by the geographical features he could see in the camera. As soon as the approximate locations of the machine gun emplacements were visible on the horizon, Net started inputting targets based on the GPS data from the online maps. Bravo Company had counted one from the ground and Lady Justice had counted...

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Portal – Chapter 40

“Get out of here before she comes back. All we did is piss her off,” the agent warned. He could breathe now but the vines were still wrapped around his lower extremities. He was not going anywhere soon. “No way,” Michael said as he continued to cut. “You wouldn’t leave me behind.” The agent remained silent, ashamed to tell Michael the truth. If the roles were reversed, the mundane agents would leave him behind, it was standard protocol and not common knowledge among the Enhanced agents. The earth thumped. “What the hell was that?” asked the agent trying to turn around and look...

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(Updated) Creating a Serial Novel in WordPress

In a previous post, I explained how I setup WordPress to run a serial novel. Since WordPress 3.8 was released, I had to modify the setup and simplified the posting process with a little extra CSS work on the back-end.I'm still using the Kingsize theme (currently v4.1.3) running WordPress 3.8.I am now only using two plugins:'WP Post Navigation' by Anas Mir. 'List category posts' by Fernando Briano.'Serial Posts Plugin' by Ade Walker was removed because it required metadata manually entered on each post. When 3.8 updated, my custom fields disappeared so I could no longer use it. I modified...

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