I wrote awhile back about how I thought Websnark might be on the way out. Eric Burns actually wrote me an email assuring me that Websnark wasn’t ending, that Websnark was who he “came to the dance with”, that he loved Websnark and that he was committed to continuing with it.
I wrote back that I was glad to hear that, but that my concern had not been that he didn’t have the commitment, but that he was losing the passion. I told him that I know (oh, how I know) what it’s like when something that once was a fun hobby turns into a job.
He never wrote back–I’m not sure if he got the email. But apparently he was at least thinking along similar lines:
Problem statement: Websnark is not my job, but I feel like I’m being locked into a position of accountability and responsibility for generating the content people want at the rate people want, instead of doing what comes to mind when it comes to mind and — most of all — actually enjoying it.
Websnark has never been defined as “a Webcomics blog.” Not by me. I talk a lot about webcomics because I like webcomics, and I’m interested in them, and because I think they matter. However, in trying to drive myself to exclusively write about webcomics — or at least kick the balance so high in the majority that I feel guilty when I write about anything else — I’ve been learning to dislike webcomics intensely. And that serves no one.
Does that mean “no more Webcomics coverage?” Of course not. I put a huge amount of each day into reading about them, doing stuff with them, and thinking about them.
But I’m done with trying to come up with artificial reasons to snark them, coupled with finding the energy to write those snarks.
He wants it to be fun again, and he’s going to work towards that.
And that’s great. More power to him. I hope it works!
Because–I definitely want to put this out here, because I’m not sure I’ve ever made it clear before–I am a fan of Eric Burns. I am not just a fan of his webcomics commentary. I love that, of course. But I love the rest of it, too. I mean…I devoured his rants about word processors. That was some cool shit! And even the stuff he writes about RPGs–I could care less about RPG systems, they’re what made the AMRN unfun for me–is interesting because he writes it. (And I’m still reading Gossamer Commons, even though I still don’t like the art and I can’t say that I am “grabbed” per se, because Eric Burns writes it.)
I want to see what Eric Burns feels like writing about every day. It doesn’t matter if it’s something I’m interested in. It doesn’t matter if I agree with him. Because I am in this for the writing.
I love reading things that are cleverly written. I love reading authors with voice. I am connected to language in a way that is far beyond the mere transmission of information. I want what I read to reach out and grab me by the heart, or tickle its way through my brain. Or both.
Eric Burns does that for me with pretty much every post. This is why I was concerned by the flurry of “I don’t have anything for you” posts. I want to read what he has to say. I could care less if he spends all week writing about RPGs, or movies I haven’t seen. It’s more than better than nothing. It’s writing that I can just eat up. It’s fun to read. It’s Eric Burns, and that’s all I ask.
[I would say all this in the comments on his post…but though I have signed up for TypePad, I can’t seem to actually log in. And while I’m on that tangent, here’s something else I wanted to put in a comment: this post by Wednesday White, who I am typically not a big fan of, is fantabulous, and I love it.]