Online Writing A True Fairy Tale

by vbright

Those of us who have suffered the journey of writing on the many online sites may appreciate the humor of this article

Many years ago, writers flocked to an online publishing site called Squidoo. What started out as a dream come true, ended in tragedy. Betrayed and down-trodden, writers began a journey for a new place to express their creativity. Publishing online can be risky, to say the least. I present to you a real life fairy tale experienced by me, and many other writers.

The Search Went On

Looking for a New Online Home
Looking for a New Online Home

The First Light

A dream come true?

Once upon a time, there were many writers seeking an online island on which to share their many stories, lessons, and humor. These writers had passion, they had talent, and most of all, they had the desire to share with the rest of the world. The artwork was provided by the incredibly talented Steve Thompson. 

Then, one day a charming prince proclaimed that he had created just such a place. He proclaimed the island would be named Squidland. Word spread like wildfire throughout the writing community, and the celebrations commenced. The Prince assured the wordsmiths that any work they published on his site would remain their own property. Like any new venture, there were obstacles to overcome, and this was no different. Loyal writers stayed the course and continued to believe in the charming Prince and his messengers.


The Prince invites the masses
The Prince invites the masses
Steve Thompson

A New Beginning

The new online community became a haven for wordsmiths across the globe, and many more began to join the writing village. As it grew, the comradery of the people grew as well. The Prince occasionally communicated with the village, but more often than not, word came through messengers of his Highness. For years, the people of the community continued to contribute, and praised the Prince for all he was doing for them. Writers flocked to the site each day to share their wisdom, but also to ask questions and offer help to other writers. Life was good. 

The Journey to Squidoo
The Journey to Squidoo
Steve Thompson

Bumps in the Road

For several years the village flourished. The community nurtured, and the citizens created. New decrees would come down from the Prince, and the people would work together to learn the new advancements. The entire internet world loved the village. Even Google, the internet Overlord, loved the new writing city and sent others there to contribute, or even visit in order to gather information. People were informed that content was King, and to create the best articles possible, and the people happily complied.

Then, according to the Prince, the Overlord Google was changing the rules. There became more and more restrictions. The villagers were no longer free to write as they wished, but under these new guidelines. Writers were accustomed to earning a little extra money by adding space that would be utilized by selling items related to the content on which they wrote. Writers were forced to become sales people in addition to writing. Content was still King, but Advertising was now Queen. Passionate writers had to put aside their creativity in order to appease the Queen and the Overlord. Slowly, the creative and informative articles became more like sales ads. The people grew restless.  


After a time, the villagers realized that they must move to safer ground, as the village was sinking. They reluctantly climbed onto lifeboats in order to save their writing. The Prince was still in charge, and continued to offer encouragement. Until one day, much to the dismay of the people, the Prince jumped ship. He swam as fast as he could, and betrayed his tribe by selling all of their hard work to a rival village. The people were in disbelief that the Prince would do such a thing. All of their hard work, which the Prince Squidoodoo promised from the onset would remain their property was sold out from under their feet. 

Bye Bye Squidies

The Prince Jumps Ship
The Prince Jumps Ship
Steve Thompson

The Land of Hubbub

To make matters worse, the new village, named Hubbub, had people who felt that the new citizens had encroached on their property. The labored but loved work of the stranded villagers was continuously slashed and criticized by villagers of the new land. It was a hostile land, and it became obvious that newcomers were not welcome. After much effort, the people began leaving the new island. As time went by, the talented writers of the old country left the island and wandered, searching for a new home.

A Hostile Land

Life at Hubbub
Life at Hubbub
Steve Thompson

A New Journey

Word of new worlds would reach the people, and they would set course to see if they could create, or at least join a community similar to the one they had been forced to leave. Time and time again, the Royalty at these new communities would abandon the community and the people. They became reluctant to try new worlds, as their hopes had been shattered so many times. Although they drifted, some in groups, they kept in contact. 

Light at the End of the Tunnel

One of the original tribal people had developed a new land, and slowly, the writers began to test the new land, to make sure it was safe to plant their creative seeds and watch them grow. The people had once trusted the keeper of this new land, but were still wary. In time, trust grew, and the people began to create once more. This new land, dubbed Wizzley, was open to anyone who wanted to create, share, or even find needed information on a variety of topics. Old acquaintances reunited and rejoiced. Once again, the people were happy and began planting seeds once again.

The End

A New Home

Could ibe?t
Could ibe?t

Moral of the Story

The moral of this story is that no matter how often you have been disappointed in writing online, keep searching, keep writing, and most of all, keep believing. Oh, and don’t forget to make a copy of EVERYTHING you put on any site. 

Updated: 10/04/2016, vbright
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Mira on 10/06/2016

Thank you, Frank.

frankbeswick on 10/06/2016

Mira, they are educational textbooks in Religious Studies. I would probably have to sell them on-line, but the publisher's failure was due to the fact that teachers are reluctant to buy on-line material, they want to download it free. So while I could try to sell it on-line, the profits would probably be very small and not worth the effort now.

I have written quite a few books for schools, but some are out of print and others are past the time when they are selling well.

Mira on 10/06/2016

Frank, why can't you market your own books now that the publisher is bankrupt?

Evelyn Saenz on 10/06/2016

Squidville was a beautiful place while it lasted and will remain in my memories. I no longer write online but if I was to do so, Wizzley would be the place I would do so. Thank you for writing the story of a real fairy land.

vbright on 10/05/2016

Caroline Ross. I know so many of us are still grieving what we had at Squidoo. It took me a very long time to write anything. In fact, this is actually the first thing I have published in a very long time. It was rushed, but since I had the notion and the ambition to do it, I did.

vbright on 10/05/2016

@frankbeswick I am sorry to hear that. I have not ventured into the book voyage yet, but I have considered it.

Carolan Ross on 10/05/2016

Very well expressed tale here, Veronica. Those of us who were on the ships remember it well. Most of my work is still stuck on that Hubbub ship, and has been plagiarized to death. Sadly I've taken a break from writing online, do miss it very much, but on that voyage there are so many torpedos to dodge.

frankbeswick on 10/05/2016

I have just had a different experience. My publisher has just filed for voluntary liquidation, and as a creditor I am owed the princely some of £2.57, not worth claiming from a bankrupt company. But I asked that any books of mine still in publication be returned to me,and they promptly were sent on line, four of them. I cannot market them, but I did not want the liquidators selling them off as company assets.

vbright on 10/05/2016

Thank you, Nancy. I do as well.

Nancy Carol Brown Hardin on 10/05/2016

Excellent, Veronica! I love this fairy tale, and I hope that everyone truly does live happily ever after!

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