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 Post subject: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 10:53 am 
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Hey guys,

I've decided to put some heartfelt thoughts down on paper and share them with you guys. I feel slightly anxious about doing so, but I've known a lot of you guys for years and years: you're like my second family – so I guess I'm just going to be honest with you all, and kick my insecurities into the dirt. ;)

A couple of years back when Jay asked me to take over Holy Worlds, I prayed a lot about it before I gave him my answer. I really felt that it was the right thing to do, and although there was upheaval and upset around the change, I still feel today that it was the right decision. It was a tough time for me, and a lot of people – I struggled with how offended some people were, and I was upset that I had hurt people – I still get upset about how hurt people were, as I guess I'm pretty sensitive emotionally, (for instance if I'm sat with someone and they start crying, the likelihood of me crying too is like yep, a definite surety). There were things done that I would change if I could go back in time, but we don't have that luxury – we just have to move forward, make amends as best as we can, and walk before God to the best of our ability. However, although I would have done some things differently, I still don't feel I was wrong in taking over Holy Worlds; and whilst some people disagree, it's one of those things that we agree to disagree over, and love each other anyway! :)

That said, this year I was starting to worry; we have a cash flow for HW, which pays for webhosting, domain names and etc. The Web Hosting was the most expensive. A good few years back, the Leadership asked for donations for the web hosting, and with that and the book sales and etc, we had enough money to run the forum for some time. However, I had started working out in my head how much money we had left, and I was beginning to worry about how we were going to run the forum in the future. There was not enough people on HW to fund it with donations again, and I couldn't afford to pay it on my own; I personally felt that the forums were so quiet – I wasn't sure where it was going and with how expensive the hosting was to run all the sites, it seemed a lot of money to pay if the forum was only being used by a handful of people. I kept telling myself I'd made a mistake, I'd taken over the forums and would eventually have to close it down due to lack of funds. It was something I was regularly praying about, as I wasn't sure what the future held for HW, and although I had felt at the time that I was making the right choice in taking over, I was beginning to doubt.

That said, I really believe that God has perfect timing. 'So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself' and 'Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand' comes to mind. Rachel wasn't in a place to take over HW at the time that Jay was sending out offers to different HW members, I don't even know if she'd met Joel then. Penoakes Publishing hadn't been set up, all these things that have come to fruition seemed to have just fallen into place at the right time. I think Holy Worlds faces exciting prospects right now, that can carry it into a future that I couldn't have. I think that God has different seasons and times for things, and I personally feel that He's moving us onto something else; I love our forum, and I hope that I am around for some time to come yet, I don't plan on going anywhere. I just really believe that Joel and Rachel can take Holy Worlds into the future that many people who have come and stayed, or come and gone, hoped to one day see. I have no idea what God holds in store for Holy Worlds, but I hope and pray that He uses these changes and these circumstances for good, and to further His kingdom. I understand that we have the ability to make our own choices, and so it's really important that we are prayerful and listening to where we believe God is leading us.

Sometimes we hear whispers that some guys aren't happy about having new Admin, and are worried about the future of the forum. Guys, if you are worried about something - anything – I'm here to hear your concerns, please don't feel you can't talk to me about them. Rachel, Joel and David are also people you guys can talk to about your concerns: it's no good us getting a whisper from someone that a certain person isn't happy, and is thinking of leaving, and we're not told much more. We're not told names, so we can't go to that person and chat to them about why they're concerned, and work through any train of thought with them, we're really in the dark and left that way. Up to now, we've had very positive feedback, and no one has brought any concerns to me personally.

If you have concerns I want to hear from you, I want to talk to you. I've always been here for you guys, and I'm still here for you guys. It doesn't matter how big or how little you feel your concern is, you can spill it all out to any of the admin, without fear of being judged or annoying anyone. You can talk to us about literally anything. You are all important, you are all equally important and your opinion will be taken into account. Don't hold onto your concerns, and feel that you shouldn't/can't saying anything, we're more than willing to hear you. It's important that we hear from you, I hate to think that some of you are worried about bringing up your concerns, or are somehow not as important as the next person or something. New member, old member, whether in Leadership or not, if you have ideas, concerns or anything – we're here to talk and to listen, to pray and to let God guide us. Yes, we may disagree in the end, but at least you'll know that your concern was met, and listened to and prayed over and taken into account.

I really personally didn't see a future with the forum with me as admin that would take us into the Publishing route, which is where Holy Worlds has always wanted to go, and I feel that the right time has come, and the right people have come along. It's not like someone who hasn't known the heart of Holy Worlds, and hasn't grown with the forum, is taking over. Philli, Aubrey, our resident Glitter lover, has been here for even longer than I have, and I believe she understands the essence of Holy Worlds and wants to see it be fruitful and grow as a forum, and branch out. I love Holy Worlds, you guys are my other family; David and I wouldn't hand this amazing place over to someone we didn't trust. They may have different ideas from us, or a slightly different perspective, but sometimes fresh ideas is exactly what you need. Holy Worlds has been quiet for long enough, it's time to spring clean, shake off any cobwebs that nasty spiders have left in the dusty corners, and waken this wonderful place up again. I'm still going to be here, taking this journey with you all, and I hope that you will be too!

Don't forget I'm just a PM away, or just an email away, or heck even a phone call away (although that might be pretty expensive since I'm half a world away) but I'm here anyway. Contact me if you're worried, you all know I don't bite; we want to hear from you as you guys make up this forum, and you're all important to us. :)

I've probably gone on a little too much about how you guys can contact us, haha! But it's really important to me that you know you can reach out and chat to us if you want to. (I'm still going on about it! Honestly!)

God bless!

Elanor

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All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king

J. R. R. Tolkien


My favourite quote: "God will give His kindness for you to use when your own runs out."

Pippin's Waggy Tales

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 12:12 pm 
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Amen, Elanor. Honestly, even those of us who are (or have been in the past) for the changes to HW, we still have our doubts or concerns about how certain things are going to fit into the new scheme of things. The important thing though is that we remember why we are here: to love God, to love people, and to love writing. That's our common goal. If we agree on this, we can be certain of good things to look forward to in HW's future! :D

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:17 pm 
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I heartily agree, Bushy! :D

_________________

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king

J. R. R. Tolkien


My favourite quote: "God will give His kindness for you to use when your own runs out."

Pippin's Waggy Tales

Autumn Leaves


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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 3:42 am 
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Eleanor, thanks for being open to say these things! That took a great deal of courage. :salute:

And what she says is rock on. I trust the people being Penoaks completely, especially with how God has brought all things together at the right time. And if anyone wishes to talk about things, I am also available if any should so desire.

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"Haven't I fallen enough?" She asked, head drooping to rest on the copper-black armor that once gleamed with starlight' white fire. "Must I betray my oath one more time to save these people I have betrayed and oppressed?"


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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 3:08 pm 
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I love you guys so much. :D I can speak to God's timing. I've always wished in the back of my mind that there was something I could do to restore Holy Worlds, but I would never have suggested something like this had it not been offered. I actually saw the email at church while waiting for service to start, shared it with Joel, and prayed during service about it. We were both incredibly surprised, but it made us both excited because it lined up perfectly with the direction God was already taking our lives.

I would never have dreamed this would be possible... of course, a couple of years ago I would never have suspected I'd be able to go into publishing full-time. After so many years of struggle, not only on HW but in my personal life, it's a very clear sign of the goodness of God for everyone to be moving into this new season together. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2016 4:36 am 
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I'm glad I got a chance to have chances to talk to you during some of those points, Elanor. You took a lot on your shoulders whenever my analytical mind would go blank on a personal issue. I'm really glad we got a chance to share the difficulties though. :D It's been great to have heart to hearts over the years. :D

I'm not over this way often because I get soooo hopelessly distracted from my time with the Lord, and the internet is the first big shiny thing, so I've been reducing the sites I frequent a lot, but I'm still available through email and facebook if you all need a chat. Praying through messaging has become one of my favorite things.

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2016 3:45 pm 
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Thank you, Varon *Hugs*

I'm really looking forward to the years to come, Aubrey, and see what God brings about on here! :)

Rin, I am so touched by that. I've been so blessed by our chats, and I'm always touched when you reach out and offer prayer. It's a lovely work that you do, and I'll definitely be taking you up on that offer! Hugs! Thanks for reaching out even though you're really busy!

_________________

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king

J. R. R. Tolkien


My favourite quote: "God will give His kindness for you to use when your own runs out."

Pippin's Waggy Tales

Autumn Leaves


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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2016 10:41 pm 
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Well, since you asked. :P

I have one small technical thing I need help with (1). Otherwise, really, I'm very happy to have a Christian community to draw on when I need some writing encouragement or feedback. I've just started on a three month sprint of writing, studying the science for the fiction, and preparing for NaNo 2016.

From a forum member's view, change of leadership isn't bad, new leaders often feel they mess up worse than they actually do, and people who whine about change seldom spend the effort to set up and run a forum they way they think it should be run. Really, don't worry about change. Do your best, ask for feedback, and fix what you can.



(1) Technical issue. Can't find how to change the color scheme. The middle blue on slighly less middle blue is very difficult for me to see. I would much prefer some gentle contrast.

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2016 10:31 pm 
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Domici wrote:
(1) Technical issue. Can't find how to change the color scheme. The middle blue on slighly less middle blue is very difficult for me to see. I would much prefer some gentle contrast.


Until the new forum is switched over, that cannot be changed. I believe there are discussions about the color scheme and I believe it will be changing. However, to make sure of that, you could go here and fill out the survey with your comments regarding the color scheme.

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2016 2:17 am 
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Miss Elizabeth wrote:
Domici wrote:
(1) Technical issue. Can't find how to change the color scheme. The middle blue on slighly less middle blue is very difficult for me to see. I would much prefer some gentle contrast.


Until the new forum is switched over, that cannot be changed. I believe there are discussions about the color scheme and I believe it will be changing. However, to make sure of that, you could go here and fill out the survey with your comments regarding the color scheme.

As a comparatively-elaborate workaround, a technically-inclined user could create a "user style" (a CSS stylesheet installed for just (a) specified site(s) in your browser that can override the decisions of the stylesheet provided by the site).

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Fri Sep 09, 2016 9:31 pm 
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Domici wrote:
Well, since you asked. :P

I have one small technical thing I need help with (1). Otherwise, really, I'm very happy to have a Christian community to draw on when I need some writing encouragement or feedback. I've just started on a three month sprint of writing, studying the science for the fiction, and preparing for NaNo 2016.

From a forum member's view, change of leadership isn't bad, new leaders often feel they mess up worse than they actually do, and people who whine about change seldom spend the effort to set up and run a forum they way they think it should be run. Really, don't worry about change. Do your best, ask for feedback, and fix what you can.



(1) Technical issue. Can't find how to change the color scheme. The middle blue on slighly less middle blue is very difficult for me to see. I would much prefer some gentle contrast.


Thank you! Your insight is appreciated. :D I'm glad you are enjoying the forum, I can't believe how fast November has come around again!

As mentioned, a new forum colour scheme is in the pipeline, but it probably won't be in place for a little while yet as I believe it's still being worked on.

_________________

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king

J. R. R. Tolkien


My favourite quote: "God will give His kindness for you to use when your own runs out."

Pippin's Waggy Tales

Autumn Leaves


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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 10:25 am 
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Most forum software, like phpBB, provides add-on styles that let the user choose a color scheme. There should be little back end work required, unless you're writing your own forum software.

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 Post subject: Re: Some Heartfelt Thoughts
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 10:46 pm 
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I literally just finished replying to an email from our tech team about color schemes when I popped over and saw this. :rofl: Yes, updating the design is a high priority. Since it's about a 50/50 divide amongst the users on whether or not they like the current theme, ultimately we will have multiple theme options. Our tech team is going to be doing some major backend work in the next few weeks. After that's rolled out, then updating the theme will be next on the list.

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Lieutenant General Aubrey Leah Hansen
author, screenwriter, co-owner of Penoaks Publishing

Penoaks Publishing: Independent Publishing, Professional Quality


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