May 10, 2002
This is the official start of my online journal, the go live date. The earlier entries I’ve loaded were all done off line, when I was pretty sure I would start a journal, but not yet sure of much else about it.
The biggest unknown was hosting. Should I start with something at diaryland or diary-x, just to see if I like doing it, and have the discipline to keep it up? Or just dive in and buy a domain and find a place to host it and go that route? I knew I wanted to be able to have a lot of images—all those quilt pictures—and free/cheap sites don’t support image-heavy pages. But money isn’t a huge issue—I could divert some of my fabric budget without damaging my ability to make the quilts I want to make. In part it was about how I want to be viewed. Since the first journals I read all predated the prefab journal phenomenon, I have it my head that having one’s own domain is the ideal. Journallers with their own domains are more serious and worthy, goes that line of thinking. That’s prejudiced, I know. But I want to be like my journal heros (most of whom are women, but I don’t like the word “heroines”), and they’re not at diaryland or diary-x or geocities. Yet here I am at diary-x. I decided it was the best way to start: easy and cheap (I sprung for Diary-X Plus!, even). And now that I’m here, of course, I’m paying more attention to who else is, and finding some familiar names and good journals.
Diary-x solved another question: design, where to get one. There’s a nice, clean template here with white background and black text, which is all I really need right now. I figure it can only increase my readership if people can check in from work without bright colors giving them away. (Though I might have to rethink the purple accent color I’ve chosen).
Another issue was caching. Did I want to try to keep myself out of Google’s cache and projects like the Internet Wayback machine? “Yes,” was my first thought. I like control; I would like to think if I took a page down, it would stay down. But I use Google to find things all the time, so it seems like I should support them, not block them. And really, what am I going to be writing about that’s so controversial? Nothing, if this goes according to plan.
Content was, and is, the big concern. What is this site’s purpose? A recap of what I’m up to, so relatives and distant friends can keep in touch without having to talk to me? An ego boost? A hate mail pipe? Why would anyone hate me? Am I going to have one of those journals everyone hates? Or is it going to be so boring that no one will read long enough to even think about hating me or my site? I don’t want to have one of those journals that’s all “something happened but I can’t write about it”. I want to have an honest journal, but not one that’s too revealing. Things I don’t think I’ll write about here include details about work and problems with Mr. Karen or other family. What does that leave? Laundry lists of things I’ve done and things I plan to do and things I’ve thought about. Things that are about me, because I own those rights. Is that going to be enough? I’ll find out as I go, I suppose.