This page will talk about this blog in general as well as my plans for some of the main continuing columns. The most important thing is that this blog’s primary purpose is to serve as an adjunct to my novels. I have written three called Save Columbus, The Ms. Matherson Plot, and Everlore Circle. They are available right now on the Amazon website and you can find them by searching my name, any of the titles, or a secret password which will be known only to readers of this blog. If you go to Amazon and type in Darren Cluster it will bring up all my novels. I then invite you to access the look inside feature which Amazon provides to read the start of the books for free. If you enjoy my writing, I hope you will support it by buying the books and spreading the word to as many others as possible. Also, whether you love them or hate them, I appreciate your time and would love to hear your comments.
This blog is going to break a rule for most successful blogs which is to stick to one main topic. This blog will have two main features, but they are so intertwined in my life that they seem like one.
First, this blog is about my writing. Articles will focus on my three fantasy series, the experiences of trying to make it as a writer in the brave new world of E-books, trivia about my novels, excerpts from my books, updates from Amazon about deals for my present and future books, and feedback from readers. And to give fair warning, I also plan to shamelessly plug my books at every opportunity. I’m attempting a rare feat, to create three successful fantasy series and sell and write them all simultaneously, and this blog will be home base for that endeavor.
I’m also going to undertake a rather unusual experiment. In addition to my three novels, I’ve written two earlier ones. They were written in the early 1990’s on a typewriter before there was computer backup and my only copies remain typewritten. The books are different from my recent work. They are intended for slightly younger readers and are also far shorter in length. They are also not nearly up to the standards of the three novels I’m selling on Amazon. However, despite their immaturity, I am fond of them, imperfections and all. Therefore, I’m going to take one of them called Jordan’s Quest and type a few pages each day into this blog. So, eventually, this blog will be home to a 120 page novel. Perhaps I will even make blogging history by debuting an entire book through a blog.
The second topic of this blog will be movies. They have been, with writing, the great passion of my life. This blog will focus mainly on my love of film and will try to share that passion with readers. There will be constant trivia questions and quizzes. There will be articles about my favorite quotes, favorite set pieces, favorite tracking shots, and favorite films under the heading of ‘my favorite things’. There will also be movie, DVD, and Bluray news, reviews of current films, comments on films I happen to be watching at home, and a variety of other topics. I’m even planning on throwing in some reviews of local theaters and articles about the overall film-going experience. I will also welcome articles from readers which I’ll be happy to add to the blog as well.
The articles will draw on the past thirty years of film-going for me in which I’ve seen in cinemas and at home over 10,000 films.
Film is such a powerful force in my life that careful readers will find tons of film references in all my books from settings to the names of characters. I’ll be writing some articles about those influences and in-jokes from my novels, which will take this blog full circle, tying my writing and love of films together and weaving them into The Fantasy Worlds of Allan Melody.
Here is a more specific look at the features and articles that will appear on this blog. A few topics will repeat information from above so I apologize in advance for that.
1-There will be many articles about my novels. Some will show some excerpts that got deleted from the final draft. Others will tell inside stories such as the genesis of many of the character’s names.
2-I will be doing articles about the experience of trying to become a success through self publishing. A future article will be one in which I try to track down some of my old tennis students who I dedicated one of my novels to. There are some that I haven’t seen in nearly 2 decades. I’m also going to be trying crazy ideas to drum up publicity for my books which probably won’t work, but at least if I write about them on the blog they should be good for a laugh or two.
3-I want this site to have a creative writing aspect to it. I’m going to start by blogging out an entire novel that I wrote a long time ago called Jordan’s Quest. It’s amateurish and not close to the standards of my other work, but I do have a fondness for it and I think it could be amusing to some readers. When that is done, I have some other ideas including trying to blog an entire short novel from scratch.
4-I’m regularly going to include some movie trivia questions and quizzes. Why? Simply because this blog is supposed to be a celebration of movies and I think quizzes and offbeat trivia are a lot of fun.
5-There will be a column called “my favorite things” where I talk about my personal favorite things in�films including performances, set pieces, quotations, tracking shots, and a myriad of other topics.
6-I’ll shortly be making a list which will appear as a column of my 400 favorite films. That will serve to start a series in which I take a brief look back at those films and why they mean so much to me.
7-I’ll sometimes be including some older articles I wrote that have appeared elsewhere on the Internet in the past. They will be entitled “a blast from the past”.
8-I will also be paying attention to current cinema in writing articles and reviews about movies that are out in theaters now. I’ll begin in late December with an article on my favorite films of 2012 and an article on the movies I’m most looking forward to in 2013. Starting in January, I will try to do either a full or capsule review of any movie I see in theaters.
9-There will also be many more miscellaneous topics and commentaries on things that I find relevant to this blog.
10-Many articles will be accompanied by a poll relevant to the subject being discussed. Whenever I include a poll in an article, I will mention its inclusion in the heading of the article by adding the designation “+ Poll”.
10-I’d also like to include articles from interested readers which I’ll be happy to add to the content here. I welcome participation and comments at all times. You may be as critical of me as you wish. I only ask that you please respect the no obscenity rule on this blog as I am expecting part of the audience to be made up of young readers.