A brand new start for Voyagersguidebook!
It'd taken me a long time to think it over, and I'd said I was going to do it for years. But my nature has always been to stick things through until the end.
I don't see this ending any time soon. I don't want it to. The Fandom is flourishing. At least in my mind. The time has truly come to leave my 11-year "relationship" with webs.com and rebuild my beloved website, Voyagers Guidebook, elsewhere.
After seeing what magic can be done with other sites, my site is like a typewriter compared to a current laptop. If it were an object, it'd make a great boat anchor. It's old. It's stale. There I said it. It's blahh matter how many little adjustments I make here and there or if I add new things – frankly, their photo storage stinks and is giving me issues so I can barely add anything new. The way they "optimize" photos on-site is ugly, it's not just my failing eye-sight. They haven't upgraded with any new features in nearly 5 years and I believe they don't care and never will. As a company they're going downhill. And it's not just them. I've checked other Website providers and they're just as old fashioned and lame. It's like if people still made websites with Geocities from the 1990's.
Like the Jon-Erik Hexum fansite, Tenafly Guy, I checked out WIX eagerly. I'm familiar with them. Years ago when they'd started their service, my sister created a make-up design webpage and it looked great even then. Still, I was kicking and screaming, just thinking of all the work I had to do. But it'd eventually hit me, I'm finally designing it in the way it appeals to me. And WIX is making it simple. Doing this, tinkering with their suggestions and layouts, helped me understand clearly the kind of site I wanted. Clean, neat, uncluttered, streamlined…professional, yet still fun.
So, I'm building from scratch – to a degree. I've used the Template option because I'd chickened out with a full blank slate. However, I'm thrilled at all the dynamic choices I can still make to "animate" my site, the unique photo galleries I can post all over different pages, rather than in just one, big, stuffy Photo page of albums.
I found the perfect color scheme – something I'd used when rebuilding this blog. Wix picked up on my choices and gave me all the "Voyagers" colors without much hassle – Red, white, brown, black, gold, green…I'm thrilled! Copy and pasting text is not hard. Seeing how many typos and how terrible the writing reads in places is. Editing will definitely come later.
The Photo albums, and the fun but painstaking task of deciding what stays and what goes will be saved for last. I need to dig through CD-Roms and thumbnail drives for my archives. I want only high quality images around the website. You're actually forced to present it that way. New website providers take into account our love for everything hi-def, non-pixelated, and crystal clear. If we don't use the right ones our photos look blurry.
But don't despair for what might be lost. I also have the Voyagers Guidebook Facebook Group, where there are lots of pictures posted too. And I can always create more albums for the old stuff. It doesn't all have to all be crammed onto my main website.
The next issue is cost. Wix charges $2.00 more per month for the basic package. That's $14.00 dollars = $168.00 a year. That will burn a hole in the near empty wallet big time, but I'm still going through with it.
Voyagers! absolutely deserves a good website and I'm charging straight ahead. I've felt that way since 2005 when I'd created the site for the first time. It'd started off as a free site and I had no idea what I was doing, but it was fun and exciting then.
I've already knocked out 8 new pages, more-or-less. There's many extra pages on my current website that can be integrated into 1. I'm no longer updating the old site. Not while I'm working hard to have the new site up and running within the next 2-3 months. I might publish it for the fans before that, but I'll be fixing and adding to it.
Transition, I've learned in the last year, can take a lot of time and patience.
With Voyagers!' 35th Anniversary this year, a change is coming!