An amusing piece of history...from my archives.
Within weeks of issuing this tribute and challenge, Webseed.com, writer platform, announced its demise.
Our race for the finish line was scratched in mid-stride!
Helga’s Heartlines: A Journal
April 19th, 2002.
Ah, the vicissitudes involved for we enterprising would-be authors and yet-undiscovered writing talent to try to maintain a firm foothold in the Ethernet environment of World Wide Web Publishing. Here today, gone tomorrow. These last few years it’s been enormously challenging for us to showcase our work with an e-publisher offering a platform of more than a short shelf life. What looked so promising in the beginning, the democratization of publishing, (hopefully lucrative), has a long way to go.
For me, first there was Themestream: “We’re a team!” Then, “Maybe This One Works?” Writtenbyme: Once more, we will see...” Well, we know what happened to them.
Now, please, please, as far as in your power, with the help of readers if need be, demonstrate we writers have the last word, my dear Webseed. For the sake of you, me, our respective contributors, audience, please ‘Let It Be’. Our Dream.
So far, I like what I see. Webseed.com, I hitch my star with yours. May we both shine brightly, and mutually thrive. May your reflective aura, cast me, your enthusiastic writer/editor, in its luminous light. This morning I review my hits, encouraged, yet recognizing I’ve still got far to go. But, I telI myself, I’m PUBLISHED and READ. How far I have come. Somebody likes me! Somebody cares what I say! Whoopi!
I discovered you little more than seven months ago. I saw the door of opportunity swing open and immediately leapt through. My first articles were massaged and submitted right away. Material I’d drafted, honed, written and rewritten, took on and off the back burner until I could figure out what to do with it, was at once out there on the World Wide Web. The prospect of traditional publishing made me tired, just to think of it. Without notoriety, or requisite credentials, initials after one’s name, and voluminous research, non-fiction doesn’t sell. Novels sometimes sell, but I’m rarely inclined to read them, much less write them. Visions of hundreds of pages of perfectly formatted copy paper, self-addressed return envelopes, trips to the post office, were not only tedious to me, but also, truly, a turn off. In the back of my mind, I knew there had to be a better way. With the new technology, it was only a matter of time for a venue that was simple and direct. Where there would be no one to dismiss or bless, thus arbitrarily keep me from my potential audience. I’m so glad I found you, Webseed.com. A match made in heaven, I hope!
The notion of writing had been with me, more or less always, in reserve for a time when, having grown sufficiently in awareness and experience, I might be in a position to devote myself to it, entirely. Once I’d disabused myself of the notion of being able to focus my energy exclusively – at least at first – the acceptance actually helped get me going. Being a firm believer that you can and should do what you love, one way or another, I would do it for its own sake, on my own time. See where that would take me....
So, finally, I made the commitment to myself early one morning several years ago. Begin! Today was the day to start. No more procrastination. Suddenly, there I was. You had to see me, rumpled and groggy. The caffeine hadn’t kicked in yet. I found myself with pen and paper in hand, scribbling away, thanks to the notion landing out of the blue as did the famous apple upon Newton’s head. I had no inkling I’d be sitting there that morning, doing what I was doing - though it had been in the back of my mind for years. Life has a way of amazing me as it unfolds.... Since then, time an oxymoron in my life, I jotted notes as ideas occurred to me - in the bathtub, while commuting - wherever I happened to be.
Apart from honing a latent talent it is advisable to have something interesting to say if one is going to write anything. All at once, the numerous passions and pleasures I’ve always pursued cried out to be communicated and shared, the various interests, issues and events I’ve been reading up on, researching, and ruminating about for sheer pleasure and to satisfy my curiosity. You could call it a love story of a kind. I’ll follow my bliss and take my readers with me. This will hopefully lead them to their own.
A perfect fit for my preferred format is what I’ve found Webseed to be. A satisfactory symbiosis. No need to write a novel or a treatise, thank goodness. Just concise, tidy articles on an assortment of subjects that I link to general, broader themes – nay, passions - in my personal Domain. Now, all both of us need is more traffic moving through you to me....
Thus, did I embark upon the exercise those many months ago, on nothing more than faith and gut feeling, not knowing if, or where, it would go. So far so good. I am proud of myself and grateful to Webseed for the opportunity. I heard or read somewhere, ‘NOBODY cares what you think until you’re a SOMEBODY’. Well, perhaps, Webseed, thanks to you, I’ll be SOMEBODY because our readers care about some of the same things I think.