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November 14, 2010

One measures a circle beginning anywhere…

Charles Fort, 1931

As inauspicious starts go, this one is a cracker. This week I officially assumed ownership of the Write Anything blog. So this is pretty much my first week in charge. And this column?

My word, it’s a little bit late isn’t it? I’d fire me if I were in charge. Which it appears I am. So maybe I’ll give myself another chance. Probation period and all that.

Last week I promised you no more NaNoWriMo posts from me, a decision I’m instantly regretting as it means an easy source of topics is denied to me. Now I have to be original. Eek!

So what to write about instead? Well thankfully this week has actually made that quite easy.

On 11th November 2007 a young and unproven writer from Scotland posted his first column for a writing blog that was known, at the time, as Write Stuff. The editor and owner of the blog took a chance on him, and felt that he had sufficient talent, and enough to say, to be a valuable member of the team. And on 11th November 2010, that same editor handed over the keys to that same Scottish writer.

Life is cyclical. Every November for three years now I’ve wondered whether I have enough to say, or whether I should lay down the column and move on to pastures new. And in some respects, I’m doing both. I reckon that, after this week, there will only be another two columns by me as Sunday writer, producing weekly original content. Then I’m going to be taking more of a backseat role; managing an increased roster of writers, ensuring daily (twice daily!) postings, and generally taking the site to new places. That’s my new pasture, though I’m not having to move far.

As I’m stepping up, Karen is stepping back. It is an unusual feeling, to watch something you created yourself become independent of you, and to go its own way. It also shows the immense level of trust that Karen has in all of us, the writers gathered to this corner of cyberspace, to keep the site going, growing, and changing. That’s humbling, and an awesome responsibility, one I don’t undertake lightly.

All of us, moving on, adapting to new roles, will have the chance to reminisce, say goodbye, say our thanks over the coming weeks. But for now I’d just like to say to Karen, thank you. For believing in us, for encouraging us, and for creating a space for us to develop and challenge ourselves as writers.

Without [Fiction] Friday, I would not have had the courage to post my fiction publicly. Without this site I would never have begun to interact with so many amazing writers. Which would have meant no eMergent Publishing. No Chinese Whisperings. None of the writing projects which I can’t even mention yet, but which are terribly exciting.

There are a hell of a lot of writers out there that owe you a lot Karen. You built it, and we came. So take a bow!

Paul would just like to apologise again for his tardiness. The traffic was awful, he missed his bus, the dog ate his homework. Take your pick!
  1. November 14, 2010 11:30 pm

    Thanks for holding back on the NaNoWriMo posts. I admire and applaud people who can do that kind of in-the-trenches writing, but for those of us who don’t (read: can’t), I, anyway, started to feel a bit like Charlie Brown.

    Great blog; I’ve only just discovered you! Thanks for being engaged!

  2. November 14, 2010 11:37 pm

    I’ll take the dog ate your homework. Poor dog!
    Umm, just joking, congratulations and all the best, Paul.

  3. November 15, 2010 12:16 am

    Here here Paul! Hats off to Karen and virtual champagne all around to celebrate what Karen has built here. Without Karen and Write Stuff/Anything I would never have ‘got’ what I needed to get back into writing… to understand my process better (I need external prompts) and to be given a shot at sharing what I know, experiences I’ve had along the way through the invite almost two years ago to be Monday columnist.

    Also I wouldn’t share the business I have Paul, because Paul and I met here, over [Fiction] Friday. We shared a blog friendship, becamne facebook mates, then a fledgling business partnership and now, almost three years on we co-own a publishing house, have released three anthologies and are currently in the process of exciting new business opportunities… all because one wonderful writer decided to start a blog about writing.

    Thank you Karen. You created a honey pot of talented writers… and we are forever grateful.

    PS: I remember that call out for a new Sunday writer… and I almost put my hand up then. And was so excited to see you named the writer. I never regretted putting my hand up then, because I enjoyed your columns so much. From humble beginnings, huh?

  4. November 15, 2010 12:44 am

    thank you Karen…. for allowing space for a very new writer to be allowed to have mistakes and post up a first draft of fiction.. for engendering that family, friendly supportive feeling writers who participate in friday fiction have and continue to have…… for taking a punt on me and bringing me aboard as a columnist.
    To Paul – your writing and columns kept me going in dark times; perhaps more than you may imagine; your work has influences so many emerging writers. I too remember that call out for the sunday columnist – but I was too frightened and unsure to thinkI could do it.. I am so glad you were the one who was offered that spot.

    without WriteStuff.. and Write Anything, I would not have ‘met’ some incredible writers, not have had the courage to start or participate in the projects I have.

    Thank you FF for collaborative writing.. who will ever forget Gongozzler, Conspinky and Intaglio?

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