|une, 1999—what an absolutely glorious month! Not only did the magazine finally get listed in Yahoo, but, on Wednesday, June 9, Of Ages Past was named Hot Site Of The Day by USA Today. Who says Historical Fiction doesnt have fans??? (Indeed, I havent had so much fun since the day when Dream Theater, Emerson, Lake, & Palmer, and Deep Purple all played together on the very same bill!)
I will never forget that Wednesday. As I do every morning, I went into the site to see what, if anything, was happening. I couldn't believe my eyes, and actually pinched myself red. The night before I was toying with the notion that we might hit out 5000th visitor sometime the following day. Well, imagine my surprise when we had not only hit 5000 on Wednesday morning, but were well on the way to 6000. Ok, I thought, what sort of nefarious prank is this? But no, the magazine was receiving nearly 4 hits per minute throughout the morning and well into the afternoon, bringing nearly 700 visitors in total that Wednesday. I could practically see the numbers turning on the counter. It truly was unbelievable, considering that 80 visitors had been the most the magazine has ever received in a 24-hour period. Then the following morning, even after USA Today placed Of Ages Past in their archives section of winners, the magazine still received another 300 hits, and to this day, receives a handful from their site. Needless to mention, I am indebted to the powers at USA Today for their kindness in bestowing the magazine with this grand honor.
Additionally, Yahoos listing of the magazine, following directly on the heels of the USA Today blurb, brought in another 1000 or so visitors, so once again, things seem to be on a steady roll, and I couldnt be more pleased.
Thanks to everyone who sent in novel recommendations to add to the ever-growing list. Please keep them coming—I would like this list to be the ultimate source for learning about both new and old historical fiction, so any and all additions are welcome.
I also must thank the numerous authors who galloped to the magazines rescue several weeks ago when I suddenly found myself in the midst of an article shortage. Your entertaining, insightful, and always-helpful articles are much appreciated, and I now have a handful stockpiled for forthcoming issues. You guys are the best! Much obliged!
Any new features this month, you might ask? Unfortunately, no, but Ive recently heard from several authors that sales on their novels have actually increased since we started featuring excerpts from new releases. That is good news indeed. Therefore, beginning next month (if all goes according to plan) Of Ages Past will begin a new section entitled Author Of The Month, which I pray will keep the names of some of our hard-working contributors in the public eye. It seems that historical fiction is finally receiving some much-deserved recognition, so I want to keep the fire burning and, hopefully, help some of our contributors to boost their sales.
Also, the Of Ages Past Award for Historical Excellence has been given this month to one outstanding site. (See the Sites Of The Month section.) I extend my congratulations to this dedicated webmaster for again doing a splendid job for history lovers. At your earliest convenience, please visit this webpage and pay homage to their achievement.
In this months Articles, author Vella Munn discusses the sometimes-strong, sometimes-fragile, and ever-important friendships that exist among writers; novelist Robin Bayne shares her experience with running a magazine and offers tips on what and what not to do when submitting manuscripts; while S. L. Viehl gives us a tongue-in-cheek list of things you should never say to a fellow author of romance fiction.
In this months Book Reviews, Frances Grattan gives her opinion on a writing How-To book; Glenda Bixler shares with us her feelings on a unique combination of novel and art; while I provide me humble two-cents regarding the latest book from The King Of Historical Authors.
In this months Short Stories, author Jesse F. Knight provides To Capture A Perfect Wave, a previously-published ghostly tale of one artist in turn-of-the-century San Francisco; new contributor Mark Mellon shares his Where Will We Bury Them?, a chilling story of World War II as seen through the eyes of one Russian soldier; another new contributor, Rachel Hullett, delights us with her story Playing With The Big Boys, the tale of a young orphan girl in early 20th-century New York City.
In this months Novel Excerpts, much-lauded author Sherry-Anne Jacobs shares with us a preview of her award-winning novel Persons Of Rank, which was reviewed in these very pages several months ago (see Aprils Book Reviews in the Archives section); Meredith Whitford gives us a taste of Treason, a gripping epic of kings and king-makers in jolly ol England,; while I provide several chapters from my 4th novel, Strange Liaisons, the story of a young Southern woman and her quest for truth, love, and understanding just prior to the outbreak of the bloody American Civil War.
As I say every month, thanks for visiting. Keep those letters, Sites Of The Month nominations, and recommended books coming fast and furiously. And again, thanks for your support in my crusade to make Historical Fiction rule the world!!!
Take care, and enjoy!
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