I can say it no other way. After 8 years and over 3,000 posts, GFTW is retiring. For the last year or so, as Bryan Thomas Schmidt and Pipedreamergrey and a series of guest posters have carried the torch, I have been wrestling with the decision to stop running this blog. My life has introduced a child, self-employment, and a second job to make ends meet. The result was I published only 16 reviews at GFTW in 2012 when in the past I had nearly one a week. I wrote no essays of substance here (though I published a couple elsewhere), readership has not grown and I have no time for publicity efforts, and the technology of blogging is changing too rapidly for me to keep up. Also, the waning of blogging in general and the growth of for-profit SF news sites and formerly print-only publishers entering the SF field has made the competition too fierce for a lone blogger of limited time and means.
This makes me sad and frustrated.
I did not feel it was fair to Bryan and Pipedreamergrey to ask them to contribute so regularly when I did not do so myself, and I needed to free them from obligations to me in order that they might be able to pursue other opportunities that would enhance their online careers. Bryan, for instance, will continue his SFFWRTCHT posts weekly at SF Signal (a Hugo winner last year) and at the SFFWRTCHT site. Pipedreamergrey will continue to run his panoply of sites devoted to Geek Media at The Great Geek Manual. If you have enjoyed these features at GFTW, please do go to their sites and subscribe.
I’m glad for them.
As for myself, I plan to continue reviewing at other sites like SF Signal (where I am an irregular), for WORLD, and for anyone else who’d like a review from me. However, it won’t be nearly as often, though I do hope it will be more in-depth. I have several reviews owed to various individuals which I will write first, then others as I desire. I’ll also be working on essays and perhaps even put time towards writing that novel that’s been knocking around in my head. I’ve also got an idea for a nonfiction work. So while the blog is retired, I am not.
I also plan use the skills gained from running a blog for the National Buy a Book Day Foundation – growing that nonprofit organization far beyond creator Philip Athan’s expectations.
I’m hopeful for me.
GFTW will remain up and running so long as I can afford it (its good for the next year at least) and I may put up the odd post as the mood strikes me. The blog is retired, not dead, and as any retiree will tell you, there is still plenty of work left to do when you enter this new phase of life. When my circumstances change, GFTW may rise again (I can’t dismiss the possibility) but for now it is on indefinite hiatus, a hiatus long enough for me to dub it a retirement. It is a sad thing, but a good one.
For now, I must say farewell – until we meet again.