Sit down, ladies and gents. I have a few things to say.
Ok folks. Go read the daylog by Two Sheds on March 31, 2007. I'm probably one of the few left on Hermetic's list from September 6, 2001 that have more recently written a non-daylog, non-administrative write-up, but if people think I'm not here for the writing - wow. I realize my contributions are few and far between, but there's a reason for that. It's all about ebb and flow.
Let me set the record straight - I'm ALL about the writing. Just because I don't contribute, doesn't mean I don't care about that aspect. There is just this thing where it ebbs and flows, you know? Most of us are in the ebb phase. (Some of us may never leave it.) I'm not casting any disparaging remarks against the community concept - I thoroughly enjoy that aspect of it as well. I've been an editor. I've been the newbie. I've been a mentor. I've been the seasoned vet. I've spent many, many hours in #e. I've pioneered a group and become a member of many more. I've met noders, I've touched them, I've corresponded with them, I've laughed and cried with them. I actually know some of the things that people want to know about.
I've even been the fled noder in a manner of speaking, with all but one write-up deleted - believe it or not, they were NOT for the typical "Asamothian" taking-my-ball-home type reasons. There are people on this site that know exactly why it happened, and I don't feel that I have to explain myself to any of you on that point. Eventually I realized that the reason for my taking all those words away didn't make a lick of difference to my situation at the time, I returned them to their rightful place.
Go read my log on October 24, 2002. Go on then. I'll still be here when you're done.
Done? Good. See that list? Since its conception, the members that should belong to it has increased, exponentially. Unfortunately, a lot of people or write-ups on that original list are gone, or their names have changed, or their agendas have changed, but what hasn't changed is that once upon a time they gave us both their best and worst, and we loved them for it. I personally love them still.
My first write-up is dead and gone. It was crap, and I know it was crap, and I'm ok with that. I would be lying if I said E2 didn't help me become a better writer - oh good gravy did it ever. It had nothing to do with "raising the bar", or whatever you crazy kids want to call it.
It had to do with a lot of the people on my list. We would feed each other lines, seed each other's minds with thoughts and build, expand, grow and grow. But we all start at the beginning, and the beginning is not so good, but it's where you have to be initially. The trouble I'm seeing is - there is no room for a "beginning" stage here. It is almost expected that your first write-up be stellar, or so help you God and Sunny Jesus.
Where do you grow from that? If you start at the top, sometimes the only the only way left to go is down.
This has nothing to do with the "pretention" of newer noders, or the "donkey-braying stubbornness" of the older ones. Change happens, and it happens gradually. Walter hit the head of the nail on that point. panamaus wasn't lighting the match to the fire - the fire had already burned, and more severely than this, long ago. He might have been blowing at the embers a little, but let me tell you something - I'm glad he did. He raised some good points, and acted as a catalyst to more discussion, and pumped a little more blood into this place.
I'm not naive. I know (don't we all know it!) that E2 will never be what it was, and several years from now if it's still around it will change yet again. There is not one single thing that can be done about that. Life isn't static, and the internet most assuredly isn't. But there's nothing wrong with nostalgia, no more than there is anything wrong with the desire for change.
In October I will have been coming to this site for 7 years. That is equivalent to a million when you are on the internet. In seven years I've seen this grow into something much bigger than all of us, and the people working on reigning in that chaos have my respect if not love. Just so long as they understand - when you reign in a wild horse, it's going to buck at you. It's going to chomp at the bit and spit at you and bray and stomp. It will fight you to the bitter end until you finally break it.
What you then have is a broken thing. If you want to gain that wild thing's love and understanding, you need to handle it with caution. Otherwise - the first chance that shows up, your wild horse will stray, or just stop working altogether, and allow its heart to gradually slow to apace until it's barely breathing.
You get what you give. I've given more of myself to this place than to anything else. I've gained a lot more in return than I am able to articulate. I'm not about to judge anyone or how they choose to contribute, or not contribute. I just wanted to get those few things out of my brain, clear the cobwebs, and prepare for the next literary adventure.
Edit: look. I'm not writing this to complain about the current state or the way that the power structure runs things here. I think I was pretty clear about the fact that I love and/or respect the people in charge for what they do. I understand it's easy to indicate what is right or wrong, and harder to provide solutions. That's not the true intent of this, and never was. Apologies if that is how it seems.
In response to the ed log by Wiccan piper I wrote the following: I thank you for your response, and realize that what I wrote could be construed that way. That's the trouble with me and journal-posting - I let it freefall out of me and almost immediately regret it afterward. There's no point in recanting, as you've quoted me quite elegantly here. It isn't something I concretely believe per se. It was just part of the letting it all out of my brain process. I still don't know what I think on the matter. What I do know, and what I was trying to point out is, I loved the site. I love it still. I love and/or respect what the administration has done here. Also, for the record, the daylog isn't the first thing I've posted to "join the fun again". I have indeed been posting all along, albeit sporadically.