Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Long Goodbye & New Regenerations

It's been three years since I was asked to join this site and contribute news stories, or show gossip, or anything particularly relevant to Torchwood - a show (at that point) still half a year away from broadcast. I must have been insane! Torchwood could very well have been the biggest pile of wank imaginable; I didn't know.

Why? Because it was a gamble, and one that might pay off. I had no idea that Torchwood would have been as big a hit as it was, but I hoped it would be! I sat there writing, hoping that more and more people read the stuff I wrote here, as if that'd somehow make me famous in the Torchwood community!

But beyond the idea of Woodie champion and celebrity, I had a deep respect for this site - launched back in October of 2005, the day that Torchwood's commission was first announced. The sole writer at the time Kurly was a genius at managing to sring together news stories at a time when production on the show hadn't even started, and there was no news to report. I remember reading his sarcastic banter pretty much every lunch time, and he had me gripped - not only to find out where the future of Torchwood lay, but by his fantastic writing style. This was much more than a fansite reporting daily news; it actually entertained me.

I'm afraid one of my biggest regrets when I joined the site was not continuing this trend, because I was far more interested in reporting actual news than playing silly, not realising that that sense of humour was (till that point) the backbone of the entire site. Sure, we now had news springing up here and there, but what's news (especially one considering an up and coming fantasy television series) without style and grace?

Kurly was very nice about it all, but I'm sure he saw the direction I was taking the site (not deliberately; I just posted more than he did, so 'my' perspective on events tended to outnumber his!). Those first six months we still worked together pretty well, and they were some of the best times I've ever had blogging - the highlight being that night at Manchester's Odeon cinema, seeing the preview of Torchwood episode one, knowing that if I stood up at any point and yelled out "I'm jackharkness!" I'd probably be recognised by most folk in that cinema screen.

Then things changed. With the series on air it became harder and harder to keep track of news; and worse still, other sites beat us to the punch 9 out of 10 times, and we were left trailing far behind them. New writers were brought on board (all of them fantastic, by the way!) but things didn't improve. Not for me, anyroad - and looking back, I think I know why.

I've never admitted this before, but as much as I like Torchwood, it's concept, characters and execution, I'm afraid that like stops short of love. I'm a fan, yes, but not in the sense that I'm fanatical about the show or have a particular drive or passion towards it. In other words, unlike a lot of other folk out there touched by the series, it's not that big a part of my life. I don't relate to Toshiko Sato particularly, to use a crude example. I have no desire to visit the Hub set (though I'm sure such an experience would ROCK). Worse still, I'm not sure if I've even be here today if it weren't for the Doctor Who connection. The world of the show just doesn't 'do' it for me as much as I'd hoped when I started writing back in that February of 2006.

When Kurly sent me an email early last year to say that he was done, both with the show and the site (effectively leaving me in charge to run the joint) I was sad because I saw a lot of me in there. Somebody writing for the fans, who then ultimately realises that he's not part of that fandom anymore and feels he probably doesn't belong there. But I'm stubborn and told myself that I'd never quit, and that I'd carry on writing about a show I only half care about - mostly out of routine, a little because I like the attention it gets me (1000 readers daily; 14000 at our peak), and then there's you guys and gals, who I don't want to let down.

I think I've known for a while now that it can't go on. What was it that Tegan Jovanka's aunt used to say? When you stop enjoying something, give it up. My gut tells me that it's that time.

After three solid years, I'm ready to bid adieu.

There you have it, my resignation; but you don't get rid of me that easily. Oh no! You see, I love this wee site, always have done and without meaning to sound egotistical for one second, I'd hate to see my departure mark the end of it. I'm detirmined it'll carry on, just as strong as ever before (maybe returning to past glories, when it was a shinning example of Torchwood web fandom at its strongest and best) doing what it's always done; reporting on all things Torchwood - by people like you, who properly care about the series and love it to bits.

I'm opening the doors to anybody who wants to write for the site. If we're lucky, we'll manage to get a team of maybe 10 writers together, all of whom can use the Torchwood.tv blog as a platform to demonstrate not only their writing talent, but their passion for the show. (I'll let you know, I've had interviews since joining the site where the interviewer mentions Doctor Who and Torchwood in passing, I mention this site and that I write it, he or she smiles, and from there things go pretty well for me!).

There's also the chance for a redesign, maybe in time for the Children of Earth series? If anybody out there is ever-so-slightly technical minded then I'd love for you to get in touch. Ideally we'd need a new XML blog template - in someway Torchwood related! - and maybe a new site logo. If you have any suggestions (I understand such things like 0%) give me a shout. Or rather, an email.

Any other suggestions would be appreciated and very welcome!

Don't fret! I'm sticking around for the forseeable future - until the new team is in place, at least, and I should imagine until Children of Earth has transmitted (and I'll continue to write Sarah-Jane.tv indefinitely). After that, I take a back seat as a sort of advisor to the new crew, until the day comes they don't need me anymore (so that'll be about a week after their arrival then!) and I bid my final, final farewell, which will be an emotional day for sure.

Thanks to everybody who's supported me and the past few years, and a great big 'fuck you' salute to everybody that hasn't! I know my posts aren't perfect, or the most coherent, but they come with good intent, from a guy that's just like you; somebody that only wants to please the very audience he writes for. I hope I've managed to do that, and bring a little smile to your fan faces.

With that, this Woodie is out.

Contact me on my email address (clicky clicky!!)
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