My Sojourn Here At the CaféA Story by John Stussy
Just a glimpse at what my time here at the cafe has done for me.
I have been a member of writerscafe.org since August 14th, 2007. Since that day I have seen a lot through this site, gotten to talk to many different individuals that I otherwise wouldn’t have known, learned lessons that others have taught through their writing. A lot of friendships have been made through this site, and almost all of them have been tried with the typical drama that occurs in any community. Yet through the drama the bonds of friendship haven’t been severed, rather strengthened.
It all started with a project with my best friend, Alex Merrill. We were trying to make his film company have a good start, trying to think up good story ideas for a short film. He called me on August 12th, and told me to look up this cool site a teacher from our old high school had told him about, a community for writers to post their work and read others’ poems and stories. I looked it up, and was extremely impressed by the way people presented themselves and their work. You were able to personalize your page, make it look how you want with different backgrounds and add graphics and playlists to your bio, as well as post your work. For the first two days I was one of the guests hovering around the site, looking at stories with Alex and holding phone conversations as to what we thought of different stories. On the 14th, he woke me up with a phone call and told me that he thought that I should post some of the poems from high school and see what people thought. Some of my friends had told me I was good at writing, but I more or less brushed the comments aside as simple support of something I enjoyed to do. It was an outlet for my thoughts, a way to cope with my parents’ deaths that January. Still, he persuaded me with the good old question “What can you lose from it?” Huh. I joined the site, made a profile and put up some writings. I added some of the poets I had read before on the site, and many more added me and welcomed me to the ranks of the writers. Among those people were such names as Blackbirdsong, Fantasy Fairy, Naedknarf, Celtic Cat, and Gary H. These were people I aspired to be as good as. I got to work more seriously, trying to juggle college and this new time filler.
I do admit, at first I wanted to be a Top Writer, just like almost anyone else. I posted poems as quick as I could write them, and reviewed my a*s off while being honest in my reviews. When I saw someone having a problem I often offered suggestions, though I didn’t know how much use my help was exactly. Through this I made more friends, and spent more time talking to these people than actually doing my college classes. A bit of a bad decision most would say, but I was fine with my decision, felt no guilt from it and I still don’t. Everyone I was talking to was helping me to cope with the loss of my parents, especially a good friend who was there for me to talk to and ask questions, and even simply vent to. Bubo helped me through so much, and through that friendship and others, I ended up forgetting about the ranking system, and rather wrote simply for the release. It felt great to let go of everything, and to talk to other people. I watched and learned from writers like Orlando, learning new words and styles from him and S. P. Vaporis. Mr. Vaporis taught me a lot that influenced my writing styles. Something that drew me to his poems was the way he formatted them to be more than simple stanzas, but gave them shapes, and life through different dimensions and emphasized his words like that. I employed the lessons learned and soon I had a style that was all my own, a mixture of the various styles of those poets and writers I looked up to. They are the ones I have to thank for it, and it is a pretty big number of people on here, nearly everyone that I have read. This site gave me teachers in all my friends.
There was a certain storyteller here on the site that I greatly admired for his ability to create the most captivating words. Captain Blackheart first asked me to read his poem The Duel, which is to this day a favorite of mine. I kept reading his works, and watched in excitement as he wrote the diaries of his alias. These stories were so much fun to read, and were a huge hit on the cafe. The way he told the stories was fun and he always managed to keep the pace going at just the right speed for the actions in the stories. I was fortunate enough to be allowed to write my own little installment of his story, a tale of a crewmember’s mission to assassinate a dangerous man. This was my first ever collaboration-type writing, and it thrilled me to have been able to do that. Aside from being shipmates in his stories, the Captain and I became pretty good friends, talking about what was happening in our lives. Through our friendship I got to know another great poet, Amor-de-Angel. Her works of love gave me bits of hope to find my own, and this is something else that I found through the café.
Actually, maybe I should say that she found me. I received a review from a mysterious, intelligent woman by the name of CarrieLynn. From the minute I read that review I decided that I wanted to befriend her. The way she talked to me made my heart race for some weird reason, and the way she wrote completely took my breath away. It wasn’t long before we started talking on the phone ourselves. And that was when I was a goner for sure. Her voice was able to take me away from the past, and I had hopes, dim at first, of being with her. Slowly, bit by bit, she was taking my heart. I started writing romance poetry, and it wasn’t half bad at all, she even liked it. Carrie opened up a new side of me. I was still me, just saw things, and experienced everything on a higher level. Especially poetry. I read even more, reviewed more than before. I was happier than I had ever been. Writer’s Café had been the place for love to find me, as funny as it sounds. Since then we have only been falling more and more for each other, and I am an extremely lucky man to be with her, distance or not.
About a month after Carrie and I started going out, I decided to befriend a writer whom I had seen much of on the café, a man named Rain. His reviews were sometimes humorous, and he was full of wisdom. I read his works, and the way he told everyone about his life was just so amazing. I learned lessons that I could have learned the hard way. Here was someone that seemed almost a father to me, despite having only talked for a little. He gave fatherly advice that a kid like me could use, and we talked on various subjects. He still is a dear friend to me, and I look forward to his teachings in the future.
Of course, as I have someone that is a fatherly figure on here, I also have someone who I look at as a mother as well. She left a ways back now, had some personal reasons for leaving. But she wrote under the name of Tai Chi Italy. Tai joked with me, laughed with me, and treated me much like my own mother used to. I was happy to have spoken with her, as she also taught me much about trusting people, and the way the world works. The way she talked to me, not as just some 18-year-old, but as a young adult, made me feel really confident about myself. She told me she was proud of me when I wrote of different things about my mother, and it seemed like mom was speaking through another person. I miss her greatly, but I am glad that I did get the opportunity to talk to her while she was here.
There are still amazing people I am meeting, such as Vatsayayana and LLB, that are simply a blast to talk to, and to read. The people I meet on here are a huge part of my life, and I would be a very different person had this site not existed. True we have drama, and changes happen like the new template and the read requests, some pretty big things. But we have all pulled through, as a community. This small pocket of the internet is home to me, and I could never leave this place. I am here to stay, to be able to talk to some people I have grown very fond of through the past eight months. I only hope that I can get the opportunity to meet all of you, to be able to tell you in person how much you have all done for me, and to thank you for the impact you have had on my life. I owe Charlie a big part of my happiness. He made me a home, a place I belong. Writer’s Café is a place I can display my writing and share it, but more importantly, it is the community that I am a part of, where I can meet new people and be with those I already know.
Waiter, I’ll have another cup of Cap! Time for me to get back to writing and to stop being so soppy hehe.
© 2008 John Stussy
Shelved in 1 LibraryAdded on March 11, 2008
One of the very corners of, WA
AboutPart-time poet, full-time fool, stoner, alcoholic, saxophonist extraordinaire (self-proclaimed), and scum of the earth. That's me in a nutshell. If you are under 18 DO NOT add me. I've been getting.. more..
People who liked this story also liked..