Rather than sharing trivial thoughts of mine or promoting a new feature at PeKu today, I simply want to extend our thanks for all who have given freely of themselves in order to provide us with freedom. We are truly grateful.
Archive for May, 2014
A week ago Sunday, on Mother’s Day, I awoke feeling under the weather. An optimist, I hoped it would pass, but it did not. Mother’s Day was spent sleeping. I felt badly, not only because I was ill but because I knew the kids and my husband had planned a great day. With no way to change that day’s situation, I decided to schedule a do-over. So, yesterday we spent the afternoon together- a walk along the beach and boardwalk, lobster rolls and clam chowder at an oceanside restaurant, card games at home, and finally ice cream cones for all. Take two of Mother’s Day was an absolute success.
Sometimes the redo is better than the original. I know with writing that my second draft is almost always better than my first. I have had time to consider the thoughts that I put on paper (or screen) and find different ways to word phrases. I see words that could be replaced with stronger choices. As I write these Editorially Yours columns, they go through many iterations before they are published.
This ability to edit and redo is one of the things that I like about running PeKu. I am able to make changes as each publication, and the company, grows. I get to look at each property individually and determine what works, what could be better, what needs tweaking. I also get to make other changes, such as when there are bugs or updates required. These, not surprisingly, are less fun, but the end results usually still make me smile.
Sometimes things may not go as planned. Sometimes we need to or choose to make a second attempt. And sometimes, if we’re lucky, that version is even better.
Over the past few months I have spent a good amount of time making changes to PeKu. These changes have been bigger than typical site redesigns or article additions. In fact, as I reflect upon the changes I’ve made it makes me think of using playdough with my children when they were little. Sitting with them at their preschool-sized table, we would take the warm playdough that we had made and create a variety of items. What I liked it about it was that you could imagine anything you wanted, shape, and reshape until your form was exactly as you envisioned.
For a good portion of the beginning of the year I have been shaping and reshaping PeKu. In February we stopped publishing on Health Eagle. In April we stopped publishing on Buzzer Eagle. However, as we eliminated, we also added. New topics were added to Here Comes a Bride, Outdoors Eagle, and Camp Campaign. With the number of publications from 23 to 21 it was time to look at organization also. Did all of our sections make sense? Did we still need to have eight sections?
As May started we rolled out our new organization. PeKu is now comprised of seven sections, over which our 21 publications are divided. As part of this reorganization, we even did a little interior work, switching assignments for the editorial team a bit. Like most jobs, getting to cover a new area or experience a change in work can make things a little more interesting.
As I look at PeKu, this company that I have shaped and reshaped a bit this year, I am please. The new organization gives it a better flow. The 21 publications are excellent sources of lifestyle reading. I look at PeKu and think that I really like what I am seeing.
Of course, PeKu is just like playdough, so I may want to tweak its shape again. . .
My first article of the month usually is a highlight of what to expect in the coming month. This month I am taking a different approach to the column, as I want to focus on two members of the PeKu team.
In April’s Highlights column, I wrote that we were adding three new columnists to assist with upcoming transitions. The first of those transitions occurred at the end of April when Bea V. and Louise v. d. H. wrote their last articles for PeKu. These two writers are special to PeKu (and me) for several reasons.
Bea and Louise were the original paid writers at PeKu. Before we launched in July 2008, I was writing articles, as was my husband and another adviser. I wanted each PeKu property to have at least a handful of articles when we officially became live. Being a startup, my budget was small. Through a casual acquaintance I was introduced to Bea, who was a senior at a local high school. She wrote many articles for me (at a ridiculously frugal price) and helped PeKu begin. When I wanted to add another writer, for similar pricing, a couple months later, Bea recommended her sister, Louise. She, too, wrote wonderful articles for not much more than peanuts.
Over the past six and a half years, I have had the pleasure of working with Bea and Louise. Their depth of knowledge, ability to research, and fantastic world travels have made them valuable and reliable members of the writing team. However, it has been six and a half years, and each of these women is moving in a different direction. Bea has graduated from college and will start a job as a process improvement engineer. Louise graduates this month and begins a master’s program in the fall.
Having watched them grown from teens who wrote articles amidst a flurry of high school sports, events, and homework to successful adults who are sure to take the world by storm, I am pleased to have known them and worked with them.
Although I will miss reading their weekly articles, I know that they are sure to excel at whatever lies ahead. I look forward to reading about their successes in the coming years.