Nook’s Not Dead Yet
I’m back at the helm even though officially Nook is still on a summer break. I should have done a post sooner about our break. I just did not have the energy. I think I’m stronger now and it is easier to talk about some things. I’ve gone from two steps back for each step forward, to maintaining and running in place. For those who don’t know I lost my husband a few months ago to an NSAID induced stomach bleed. He had refused narcotic medication to deal with his pain from an accident several years ago and took what he thought to be a safer over alternative. I can’t unsee those last few hours of me trying to keep him alive until help arrived, and of the rescue squad trying to bring him back to life. It takes all my energy to reach a point each day where I can pause the mental equivalent of a full color video stuck on replay, so that I can get small things done. The result being that I have been in now-you-see-her-now-you-don’t mode. Mostly you don’t.
I was not the only one that real life got too real for. One member was downsized out of her job. Some had personal health crises, a couple more who are caregivers for elderly family members saw them through traumatic hospitalizations and are now helping them recover strength at home. One had a child undergo surgery to save a kidney. So the Nook has been empty and events were put on hold for the summer to give us all a chance to catch our breath.
All of this has set the stage for a situation the Nook gang has asked me to speak to. This is as much a talk to encourage them as it is to explain what is happening. While we were busy elsewhere, there has been an ongoing replication of the events we have come up with as unique ways to engage authors and readers: Our write-ins, The Everything Writing Chat, Author Balls, Flash Fiction Workshops and so on. All of those events replicated in a sort of Nook Nock-off appearing on some commercial grids. I’m not sure if there are still 3 or it is just the one being moved around. The event descriptions are worded so closely to ours that people think I have handed off the torch. Some thought the Nook members left the grid because I abandoned it and were holding their events elsewhere. Some just thought we put a clone of ourselves on other grids and were expanding.
The Nook members were all frustrated because we saw it happening but none of us was able to deal with it. In the past weeks, especially the past week, we’ve all been asked what was up by different people and the team said it was time to speak up. So here I am.
There is no copyright on events or ideas. Yes, anyone can create a perfect clone of our grid and we can’t stop it. I think it’s a waste of good energy to pay it any attention, but to clarify for those who were fooled or wondering:
1) I did not pass the torch.
2) We did not invite anyone to replicate our events for us elsewhere.
3) Nook is not dead. We’re not finished. We do not quit.
4) We hold Nook events at Nook and nowhere else. If we want to expand, we’ll add another server.
That said, I want to say to the Nook team. No one can replicate you, what you are about, who you are as a community, or your driving goal to have a hand and a voice in shaping the future of fiction. You have poured years of your lives into this goal and we are not done yet. No one can duplicate that. When someone makes a Nook knockoff, that’s just them wanting to be the star of your party. The passion you pour into everything you do will always outshine that.
So we’re going to take a few more weeks to get ourselves together. All Nook events will resume at their regularly scheduled times in September.
We do, however, have one new feature launching outworld. Every Friday, starting this Friday, we will each blog about a book we bought that we think is worth the bucks. There will be a strong focus on indie authors, but it will not be limited to them. It will be limited to books we spend money on. Watch for us here and on social media. I will link to all the others participating when I make my post.
Edit: Forgot to say, Siobhan Muir made the lovely book graphic.