With Anniversary week in full swing, we're making a substitute for this week's Author Showcase and instead of reviews of two GA Authors, one of them a Promising Author - this week, we're thrilled to offer this piece from one of the first GayAuthors.org authors, Comicality. Radiant Renee Stevens reached out to Comicality, and wrote the intro for this. We hope you enjoy!
We are bringing you something that was written from the heart. We all know what GA means to us and so I wanted to see what some of the earliest members thought of the site and how it's grown. In this avenue, I contacted Hosted Author: Comicality. He was with the site from the start and has seen every change that has happened. He knows what it was like from the start compared to what it is today. Comsie was gracious enough to provide us with a wonderful little piece to help us celebrate Gay Authors 10th Anniversary! Thank you Comsie!
- Renee Stevens
Wow...how time flies when you're having fun, right?
Am I really getting that old? Hehehe! One has to wonder what would have happened had things gone differently. If that one chance meeting online all those years ago had been missed by a fraction of a second.
As one of the very first authors to appear on GayAuthors, I've had the pleasure and honor of seeing it grow into the amazing place that it is today. I got to see the boards become populated with a loving and caring community. I got to see the roster of talented authors get bigger and bigger every month. I got to see the support, the feuds, the anthologies, the many different designs and set ups...it really has been one hell of a ride for all of us so far. And I expect that the ride will only get more exciting from here on out.
When I first started writing, I had a dinky little website that I built with the best HTML that my 'non-techie' mind could come up with. Unfortunately, the server that I was on at the time was going through a rather homophobic stage at the time. They didn't want to have anything to do with gay fiction. CERTAINLY not gay TEEN fiction. I was storing all of my files there, a ton of notes and stories and ideas. Then one day...poof. All gone. I got a rather cold email from them saying that my account had been erased, and that my content violated their terms of agreement. I'll never get that work back. That was a devastating blow, as I was writing like a madman at the time.
Hearing the news, one of my readers said that he would pick up the site and host it for a while. Then, once things got rolling again...he vanished from online. And I had no way to update or even erase the site. For all I know, it might 'still' be floating around in cyberspace again. No warning. He just disappeared. And I was feeling really down about it, because it was starting to look like I'd never be able to settle into a place that I could call home.
In comes Myridian....
I have to admit, when he offered to host my site for free, no questions asked, hehehe...I kinda felt like, "Here we go again." But I took a chance. He really seemed like he believed in me and what I was trying to do with my writing. So I thanked him and said "Let's do it." The server had a different name back then, I think. Hehehe, what was it? Like 'a site' or something? Hehehe, well, it wasn't GayAuthors yet. But what happened after that proved to be a match made in Heaven. He truly saved me from vanishing from the net completely. Because after the second incident, I had lost my inspiration and felt as though I just didn't have the strength to rebuild a third time. But Myr believed in me, and together we made an effort to start all over from scratch. That wasn't easy. I had to switch to a new service for the message boards, my previous readers had no way to find my new site location...it was exhausting. But I kept writing, kept advertising, trying to bring people in whenever I could. And in time, as the Shack grew, GA grew, and vice versa. We basically leapfrogged over one another to get more and more attention from a public that was looking for stories with a bit more substance than what they could find in a lot of the free sites online. By the time GayAuthors had become official, it had become synonymous with quality gay fiction. Romance. Emotion. A place where people could go, and leave feeling better than when they clicked on that link. And that's something really special, you know? I'm honored to be a part of that.
I truly consider Myr a close friend of mine. Over the years that we've been in contact, it has almost been a good time. Hahaha! Except for a few 'high spirited conversations' that occur from time to time. But if there's no conflict, then it's not a real friendship, is it? There have been many times when we would catch each other online at the same time, and end up talking for an hour or two. LOL! With neither ONE of us getting our online work done. But it's still fun! Sometimes Myr is stressed out, sometimes I'm stressed out, and we can talk about it. We can let off steam and get back to normal. And sometimes, we're both so busy (or exhausted) that we can barely get in a quick hello. If that much. But I wouldn't trade it for anything.
This past June, Comicality's Shack Out Back celebrated it's 14th year online....and that wouldn't be possible if it wasn't for Myr and GayAuthors. It is because of GA that I'm still around at all. And I am forever grateful. There's nothing that he can't ask of me. And even if I give him grief, bitch and moan and complain about it...I know what this place has done for me....and I know that I owe them a debt that I can never repay with anything other than the words from my heart. And they can have it. Forever and always.
So happy anniversary, GayAuthors! Websites have come and gone over the years, but we remain strong! We just keep growing and getting better! Not many people can say that! So raise your glasses, folks! My every success is due to the kindness and understanding that GA gave me way back when people were still saying 'Comicality who?' Let's wish them well for another ten years! To you, and to all of the amazing talent that you've sponsored on the site!