Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Expanding your site, adding segments outside your comfort zone or even knowledge base, is definitely a scary thing to do.

PhotobucketWill people like the additions or even care? I don't know, I hope so, but I know I wanted to try a little stretching and see where it led me. 

When I started Fandom Fanatic, I wanted to promote the amazing under appreciated stories that I loved. Starting out small doing reviews, I quickly blossomed in to promoting the contests and causes that make up the fandom. I now have a multitude of segments that include author interviews, spotlighting, guest reviews, book reviews, new story promotion and affiliates.

In the past year, the Fandom Fanatic site has gone through some major appearance changes as well. Starting out with a very simple look and a banner adopted and edited by evieeden, I was on my way. I thought I looked good until an affiliate commented, very graciously, critiquing my "busy" look and offered her assistance. Assistance I gladly accepted. I learned all about HTML's, spacing, and what to focus on. Needless to say, I was looking good.

I struck up a friendship with the multi-talented AnIllicitWriter who decided I needed a face lift and lift she did. New banners, buttons, background, and formatting. I was brand new, shiny and loving myself. Most of all, I looked like a real site.

And while the beautifying was going on, I was doing my rec's and meeting the writers of my favorites. I gained the confidence to reach out to them via twitter and PM's asking for interviews. To my thrill and utter amazement, not once have I ever been refused. I have met the nicest and most extremely talented people in the fandom. Most are so willing to help and support. I have also, like many, been subjected to some not so nice things, but I never let myself dwell on them. Overall, the experience has been positive for me. I love the fandom as my blinkie will tell you.
And because of the majority of kindness and positive feedback I have received, I believe in paying it forward.  If you are fandom related, regardless of genre, and you follow me, I will follow you back. If you are a new writer reaching out for some exposure, I will help promote your story. If you email me, I always respond. Questions, I always answer. It is nice to be nice and I never forget I was new at one time too.

So the growing pains are upon me. What turned out to be a new segment I was trying out, turned in to a full blown expansion of the site. I have some wolf lover followers and an amazing wolf specific affiliate, Printing Paws. I felt the need to acknowledge that by starting some wolf rec's. I requested some wolf rec banners from Printing Paws, which by the way, are gorgeous. Set up an intro page on my site, and started looking around. The Wolf Pack had arrived, so I thought.


The fandom I discovered is very divided. Unless you are a wolf lover, it is not easy trying to find out who the wolf writers are, let alone, the big ones. I was really struggling. I ventured in to the world of Jacob Black N Pack, and met one of the adm's, Jake's Girl. What a nice person! She helped guide me with stories to check out and sent me some links. Not to long after that, I recv a rec from a wolf writer on my guest review page. I was thrilled! And even more thrilled that the rec was so well written, I posted it as is.

And who was that wolf writer? light4dawn. What a talented girl. Do you know her? You should. Though a new writer, she has been nominated for both a Torch and Hidden Star Award. But she is a wolf writer, so her ship is much smaller than the vamp ship. So yes, I understand if you aren't familiar with her or her stories...yet.

But!! You will definitely get to know her now because she is now a member of Fandom Fanatic!! light4dawn will be doing wolf rec's and interviews, as well as schooling me in the way of the wolves. And what an education I am getting. I had absolutely no idea of the myths, divide, stories, sites, and writers. But the stalker in me is loving it. I love finding out new things and meeting new people. This past week has been a complete blast and I can only hope it continues.

Fandom Fanatic now as an actual "about" page and we have posted two wolf rec's and have an upcoming interview with a super star in the wolf fic world.

I am really excited about the new additions to the site as well as light4dawn joining me on this journey. I hope you all are too and pop in to see the new happenings on site!

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