Monday, March 23, 2015

Ch-Ch-Changes Coming to Spacefreighters Lounge

Many of our blog readers are aware that we've had a recent change here at Spacefreighters Lounge. Just a couple of weeks ago, we made an enthusiastic introduction of Australian SFR author Greta van der Rol as the latest partner to our blogosphere. The dynamics she brings to our rowdy little space bar are exciting, but it's also a wonderful thing that we now have a peer from Down Under amongst us.

This gives Spacefreighters a unique scope: three time zones in the USA (Pacific, Mountain and Eastern), the UK and Oz! Speaking in temporal terms, that's a lot of real estate! Global time, I think we've pretty much got you covered.

But we're not stopping there.

The recent smash success of the SFR BRIGADE HOUSE PARTY illustrated what a powerful thing it can be to connect authors with readers of SFR. Since inception here at Spacefreighters Lounge, we've been focusing on more of a mixed author/reader bag and though the two are not mutually exclusive, we think a focus on more of a "SFR beat" is warranted. We'll now be aiming to blog on more timely topics of interest to SFR readers and fans.

BON VOYAGE MISSION: SUCCESS

Since 2009, we've been talking a lot about our writerly journeys and our successes--large and small--via the MISSION: Success posts. While it was very motivating to report on our efforts to obtain the Holy Grail of published authordom, as of 2015 we're all now THERE. So the time has come to retire our trusty MISSION: Success timelines. (::: a bit of nostalgia ensues ::: ) Maybe we'll even throw a little retirement ceremony for the familiar old button. Clearly, it did it's job of keeping our eyes on the prize and reaching for our goals.

Mission accomplished!

So here's this >>> If there are any aspiring authors out there who would like to pick up the torch and be "willed" the magic of MISSION: Success, chime in and let us know. We'd be glad to pass it on to a "Next Generation" author or authors-in-waiting. And may the Mission be with you.

NEW FACE--FAMILIAR PLACE

Along with our change of focus, we're also working on an exciting new facelift for the Lounge itself. The look of Spacefreighters has changed very little since inception many years ago. Time to modernize (or maybe futurize) the ol' tavern.

We hope to make this interactive. We'll be asking blog readers to help us choose a new banner and tavern trimmings. (Stay tuned to this frequency.)

GUNNING FOR THE GOBBLEDEGOOK

Along with the new look, we need to conduct a search and destroy mission for the Ghosts of Spacefreighters' Past. Here's what we're shooting for.

1. Update the text boxes to a dark font on light background
Along with the new banner, we'll reset the entire blog to tie into the new theme. One of the things our readers have mentioned in the past is that the white font on the dark background is a literal eye-sore. We'll be changing that up. (And really--good riddance!)

2. Sweep out the cobwebs
We've acquired a lot of cool site links and other clickable offerings over the years that have since gone defunct. Time to spiff up all the dark corners by eliminating the nonfunctioning content.

3. De-clutter the bar area
In the past, we've collected an overwhelming amount of information which we've plastered all over the sidebars, bottom bars and added pages--until it's the electronic equivalent of layers of posters. Most of it is no longer relevant for our new theme and definitely won't work with our revamped look. We'll be doing a major spring (and probably summer) scrape and polish to divest ourselves of the AIO (Accumulated Information Overload).

4. Develop a New Display Case for the Goods
This went from a no-book-title blog to a multiple-multiple-book-title blog in a very short time, and with the addition of Greta van der Rol's work...well, it's just a lot! We're going to design a more attractive way of showcasing our work and then pointing you to our websites if you want to learn more about the stories.

SPACEFREIGHTERS THEMED ANTHOLOGY?

Another idea we've been booting around is the possibility of doing a Spacefreighters Lounge anthology of short stories, and re-introducing our bartenders, Fax and Benna. Surprise! Betcha didn't even know Spacefreighters Lounge had bartenders, didja? Well, sure we do! Who d'ya think serves up all that Billins and mops up the spills? (Psst. Benna may even have a crush on one of the characters in Inherit the Stars.)

Yes, the space ale dispensing duo made several brief appearances in the past but have since been relegated to the "not heard and not seen" status. We think we need to give them another shot at becoming Lounge personalities and narrators for this possible future antho.

What do you think?


FEEDBACK, FEEDBACK

So there's our plan. And here's the part where we ask you for your thoughts and ideas. Tell us what you like and don't like about Spacefreighters Lounge, and/or other blogs you frequent. What works for you as a patron? Really, we're all ears...or antennas.

Your opinions really matter to us.

Have a great week.

~~~ * ~~~

6 comments:

  1. Quite sad to see the Mission Success go - even though I started with my debut imminent, it's been my mainstay since joining. *sniffle*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, it was a great mainstay for a long time, but seems time to let it go. Maybe we'll get a taken or two or six on our author to pass it on.

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. Thanks, Pauline. We're looking forward to the renovations. :)

      Delete

Comments set on moderation - all spammers will be exterminated!

About Spacefreighters Lounge

Hosted by 5 Science Fiction Romance authors with 8 RWA Golden Heart finals and a RITA final between them. We aim to entertain with spirited commentary on the past, present, and future of SFR, hot topics, and our take on Science Fiction and SFR books, television, movies and culture.