Or more important, who's it for?
This website, still not quite two months old, took an enormous amount of effort to put together. Some from me—I'm responsible for the content—but even more from Andy Malone, my quite fabulous web designer, builder, master and custodian. Yet, at least in my mind, the question remains. (It's not Andy's job to worry about the philosophy!)
Who, for instance, did I have in mind when I decided we would have a section called On Writing with various short essays about the craft?
And didn't I realize that an abbreviation like “ms” only means manuscript if you're a publishing professional? Otherwise it's a modern equivalent of Miss or Mrs. Or maybe a disease.*
The answer is I never approached the concept that way. Here's what actually happened:
I've had other sites at various stages in my writing life. This time I wanted something less static. More dynamic. Like… well, like some of the food blogging sites I love and frequently visit. So the answer to the question about On Writing is simply that I thought of it as an equivalent of the “recipe” section on a food blog.
Yeah, but everybody eats. Everybody does not write books.
That occurred to me. So did the response. Everybody who eats does not cook, much less bake. But the audience for food related sites seems to be pretty much unlimited. And I remember years ago a dear friend who seldom went beyond scrambling an egg saying she was an avid reader of cookbooks. They satisfied her desire to eat spectacularly good food when she couldn't get it. (We were living on a small island off the coast of Africa in those days, but that's a whole n'other story.)
I also remember reading somewhere that people interview writers because mostly everyone loves stories. What the interviewers are really saying is, “Show us your magic.”
I can't do that because it isn't perhaps magic, but is so mysterious I can't claim to understand it, only share the journey. And hope that if you don't tell stories. you enjoy reading about them. As well as reading the stories themselves.
*We're working on a glossary. If you have any suggestions for definitions you'd like to see, please tell us in the comment section below.