Abandoned Highways

This is not a story update. I’m just thanking people who’ve helped promote the story. Click Here to go to the next update.

Thanks so much to everyone who voted for The Beginners Guide. You got us to number 8 on Top Web Fiction’s general category and number 5 in the fantasy listings. I’m pretty happy with that. We’ve managed to sneak ahead of some great stories that have had longer than the Guide to build a readership. Of course, there are a few that have risen to the top even faster. Citadel, which started in mid October, is rocking a stunning number 3 behind only the indomitable Wildbow. Congratulations Untitled (edit: That should read Unillustrated I don’t know how I made that error!), and also thanks for the link! While I’m thanking people, huge thanks to Alexander Hollins and SnowyMystic who gave me ratings and reviews at Web Fiction Guide. Your reviews have driven in a lot of traffic, and more to the point I really enjoyed reading what you had to say!

You guys are all great.

And you were promised a story! Abandoned Highways is now up at wattpad. I originally said you needed to register to read stories there, but that was incorrect. You can read without logging in. There are some cool features if you do log in, and I really like how their downloadable app displays the stories, but you can read without any sort of account. I’ve put the story up at wattpad because I don’t want to introduce a big interruption into the flow of The Beginners Guide, and I may delete this post and move the information here-in to a comment when the next section goes live on Tuesday.

As to Abandoned Highways, well it’s a story I’m really quite happy with. I wrote it a few years back and I hadn’t looked at it for a while, but when I was editing it for this I found myself fairly pleased with what I’d written. In some ways, it’s very different from The Beginners Guide. Damien, the hero, isn’t much like Kyle and the story as a whole is more atmospheric and internally driven. In other ways, the two stories are quite similar. The setting is, I hope, quite original in both stories and exploring a setting is a big part of what I’m doing with both.  I write the setting of The Beginners Guide as “hard” as possible. Abandoned Highways is pure hard sci fi, but don’t let that worry you I didn’t describe any rocket engines. 😉 But listen, why are you reading about it when you could just go read it.

UPDATE: Welcome to all the readers coming in from Reddit and a big thanks to andor3333 for the link. (BTW, I’ve just thanked a lot of people by name here. I’m not stalking you; I just have inbound link information in the WordPress analytics.) Rationalist Fiction, huh? I had to look that up, but I guess that is about what I’m doing here. No real aesop as such- but otherwise. Given the nature of that genre let me repeat something I’ve previously said in the comments: Pay attention to the rules of the magic! Kyle does not entirely understand his spell. But, no other hints. Lips Sealed!

We are seeing a bit of a traffic spike. It’s not a huge one or anything, and the site seems to be doing very well, however should you experience problems the story is mirrored over at wattpad no registration required.

An Explosion of Savings
Santa Sells Cars pt 1

For some reason I cannot adequately explain, even to myself, I'm trying to write and to write better. So if you like my story let me know. All feedback is appreciated.

Posted in The Beginners Guide to Magical Site Licensing
10 comments on “Abandoned Highways
  1. Alexander (andor3333) says:

    I am so glad the reference got you some attention! This is a really innovative story and I love the world and magic system you’ve built so far.

    I got hooked by the moment of discovery in “Fire!” That was extremely well written. So many times the protagonist just ends up with some magical gift or advantage with no explanation or for some reason sees something game breaking that no one caught before despite being totally obvious.

    Here you did a WONDERFUL job of introducing the system. You brought up the different elements involved like the chi punch style foam and why people usually run into problems subtly in the background over the course of the chapters before the discovery so the reader had a chance to absorb them rather than just having a big heap of new stuff dumped on us all at once.

    The less stylistic reason I’ll admit also made me like this is that I have an IP law background and I find it hilariously entertaining that someone managed to make a magical system involving that.

    Anyway, its great that you got some traffic out of this and I wish you the best of luck with your writing in the future!

    • Thaumaturgical_Support says:

      Thank you, you’re too kind. It also sounds like you can keep me on the straight and narrow a few updates from now when more of this setting’s IP shows up. 😉 It’s different, of course, because magic is protected for different reasons than ordinary art and technology. However, I researched the real world laws for a couple of details. We’ll see how well I did!

  2. Thank you for the kind words, but it’s Unillustrated not Untitled. Unless there’s actually a Citadel written by Untitled, in which case: oops. The link was my pleasure since your story is, so far, a great read, kinda reminds me of a Heinlein short whose title I can’t remember. I figure us newbies should stick together. Unless you catch me on TWF, then it’s war.

  3. Alex says:

    Hi! Is there any way of following this story? (Preferably by email updates, though an RSS feed that gets just the new chapters would be good too.)

    I like what there is so far, but without a way of knowing there’s a new update I’m unlikely to keep checking back.

    • Thaumaturgical_Support says:

      So you’ve got a couple of options. There’s an rss feed for the whole site: http://starterserials.com/?feed=rss that’s not story specific, but it’s also not terribly noisy. You’ll see at most 2 updates a day unless something changes. If you log in at wattpad you’ve got some tracking options: http://www.wattpad.com/story/25722056-the-beginners-guide-to-magical-site-licensing . I think email is one of those options. At least you can follow a user and get updates when “Users you follow upload a story.” I personally use the mobile app to track stories on wattpad. That’s my favorite way to follow as it does a very good job at catching updates and the text presentation is just like an ebook. You could probably build your own rss feed through by having http://page2rss.com/ track http://starterserials.com/category/the-beginners-guide-to-magical-site-licensing/page/5/ BUT you’d have to update that about once a month as new index pages are built. As a final option, you might want to just set yourself a calendar notification to check back around July 2015 that’s the approximate finish date for the current book/plotline/whatever-you-want-to-call-it. I’ve written the entire thing and it should end at least as cleanly as the first book in a series right around that time.

      • I’m the guy that asked about it on the starter serial forums here, so I’m glad to see that I’m not alone in this desire for an independent RSS feed. At the moment, I’ve just been reminding myself to check regularly, and linking back through WFG. You’re welcome on the review! I try to grab one story at random every week to review. Yours was it that week!

        also, am i the only one creeped out by the fact that you have three Alex’s active on your comments at the same time? I feel like the three Erics at Wayside school.

  4. Jesp says:

    Wattpad does require you to sign-in to read and you have to use your Facebook account. I see that as an unnecessary invasion of privacy so won’t be reading the story there. Thanks, though.

    • Thaumaturgical_Support says:

      Blast, I think that’s new. If you want to read it I can share out a google doc or something; just let me know.

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