Sunday, February 3, 2013
100 Days of 750words.com
750words.com and you should start an account there today and start kicking in a few bucks to the guy who runs it. His name is Buster Benson and he has created something special. The trouble is that it has gotten popular beyond his ability to run. Recently, he lost the person who was keeping things running and he himself has taken a job at Twitter that keeps him, I would imagine, pretty busy. He also has a wife and a kid. The future of 750words.com is in doubt.
First, it's okay because this guy created something and it took off. I mean, he had an idea of something he wanted and he created it. Then, for whatever reason, it took off. I have no idea how many people are using the site. I know I use it. My friend Carol uses it even more than I have. And there seem to be a lot of people offering to help keep the thing going. That's a great thing, to create something from an idea and have it become a sensation like this. Good for him.
Also, it's good that he has a job he seems to love, a family, and a whole lot of success. All that and he still seems to be a down-to-Earth kind of guy who really is interested in making the world a better place. I'm very impressed with that kind of thing. A person like that is important in the world.
And it's also okay for people like me. I'm going to record my second longest streak tonight and my second time that I've hit 100 days in a row. If Buster decides tomorrow that he has to shut the thing down, then I'll still have that accomplishment. It's not like that goes away.
750words.com if he shuts it down, but I have no shortage of platforms on which to write (including pen on paper). I've gotten into this habit of writing every day and composing something for publication. Even if he has to stop running the site, there's really no reason for me to quit writing. That would be like a photographer quitting because film cameras are out of vogue. There are other ways to get the job done. And the job is too much fun to quit.
I've been reading what other people are writing on the site describing Buster's quandary and a lot of them seem to miss the point. He said that money isn't really the issue, though he didn't say that money wouldn't solve the problem. It's really a case of needing someone to take care of it. I would imagine that he would be happier to have a kindred soul to hand it to rather than have to hire people to run it. The site wasn't designed to make a ton of money, it was something he wanted and wanted to give to others. The people writing in to suggest that he find ways to monetize it are, in my opinion, missing the point.
It would be fine if more people kicked in money and Buster found himself so flush that it made perfect sense to hire someone to run it for him. I think that he might be willing to go that route, but I don't think he wants to go with pricing plans, incentives, and the like. All that stuff is more bother than it's worth.
My hope is that enough of us have shown an interest in paying for something wonderful and that the money can make his life easier to the point where he feels good hiring a person or a couple of people to run the thing and let all of us keep writing. The only problem is that there will be more and more people coming to the site. I know that for sure.
Whatever the case, Buster's problem, as problems go, isn't a bad one to have. And my problem as a user of 750words.com who might not have the site to write on any more, is an easy problem to solve as well. I mention all this because just a few years ago I would have railed against the injustice of it or begged him to keep the site alive. Now, I just wish him very well and while I have hopes that the site will continue, I know that no matter what I'll find a way to always and every day write on.
Posted by Brian G. Fay