I’m hope you’ll all forgive the following whine – I just need to get it out!
I’m a little disappointed in myself over what’s going on at ChapterBytes. If you didn’t notice, I put the site on hiatus awhile ago. It was fun while, well, while it was fun. But it hasn’t been fun lately, for me anyway. It’s nothing about what’s been written, I love the writers and I love the story. But when I started the whole thing I didn’t think too much about the administration of it all. And the finding of new authors, and the promoting, and the stats, and all the stuff that doesn’t make it fun anymore. And I don’t know what to do about it.
I’ve had some grand plans for it. I bought a domain name, with ideas of self-hosting, and having multiple streams of storylines, and all sorts of cool stuff. Then suddenly those things overwhelmed me. At the same time I struggled with finding new authors to keep the current story going. I felt like I was constantly selling it, always asking for more writers. I almost dreaded a new chapter arriving in my inbox because that meant I had to get the next writer going and I never knew what their enthusiasm level would be. At the same time the logistics were killing my own enthusiasm.
So now I’m left with decisions. Do I let the current site just die where it is? Do I move everything over to the new domain and try again? Do I start fresh with a new “book” at the new site? Do I use the new domain for just my own writing?
Should change the whole concept into a writing carnival with links? I could set a topic or a first sentence or some other prompt each week and let people who want to participate write on their own sites instead?
The thing is – I put up that hiatus post a week ago and I’ve not had one single comment and only one private email. Does this mean hardly anyone really cares? That I can do whatever I want and it doesn’t matter? If it does matter to someone then I’ll feel bad if I screw it up, but if it doesn’t matter to anyone then I’m free – but disappointed. Clearly I’m conflicted.
I’ve also found it really odd that I’ve had two completely different readerships between these two sites. Only rarely has a regular of one crossed over to the other and stuck around. Well, readership is a strange thing in itself anyway, fickle, unpredictable, and apparently inversely proportional to number of comments. I suppose that’s a whole separate post of it’s own though.
I’m digressing. What I’m really doing is asking opinions here – what would you do if chapterbytes was yours? Not that I necessarily do what y’all tell me to, I’m just curious what you would do.
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