As the person first responsible for the idea of VSS365, bringing it to life, hosting the first year of prompts and designing the ideas for the anthology, I have been asked to provide my thoughts on a few things.
VSS365 is a vibrant, supportive and inclusive global community.
It doesn’t work without the following:
- People like Voima Oy and Arthur Unk who selflessly give their time and energy to help others
- People who read, support, re-tweet and encourage – especially those that do so on a regular basis and have done for some time – you are the lifeblood of vss365, and you are everything that is good about Twitter and the virtual world
- People who write incredible stories, poems, and other creative work – you are out there, making the world better and inspiring others with your words
- Finally, it really doesn’t work without the prompt masters. They are volunteers, they are as passionate about the community as anyone and they want to inspire the best stories possible.
Is it a perfect system? No, but it’s as close to one as I have ever been able to find. This is not my doing, it is entirely credit to you and anyone who has ever participated in any way.
VSS365 has been wildly successful. I am not just talking numbers here, I am talking about how it has made people feel, the characters created, the worlds, the universes, the books, the films – there are literally dozens and dozens of massive projects that have happened because of this. It has literary, truly, saved some people. It has allowed new writers to flourish, and experienced writers to grow. It has been so successful that many many people have created offshoots, but the community still thrives because of the people listed above and their respect, care, and support for each other.
While the community can’t (and shouldn’t) force prompt masters to select words, we can encourage prompt masters to check previously used words, if they then decide to go with a word anyway, then at least it is a deliberate choice. Are these ‘duplicate’ words excluded? No, not at all. As Arthur Unk has pointed out very well on his pinned Tweet, new people arrive every day, life changes and new stories can be found for old words – but if we can help the prompt masters to look up previously used words then we, as a community, should try to make this happen in a supportive way.
Likewise for obscure or unfamilar words. I am always thankful as a writer for the occasional challenge. Some of my best work has come from competition picture prompts that left me scratching my head for a few hours.
It would be a massive shame for any prompt master to feel unwelcome, in the same way that I would hate for anyone to make you feel that your work was unworthy.
The community is something I am incredibly proud of, and you should be too. It is, like I said, one of the shining lights of Twitter, it is a beacon for how social media can inspire, connect, innovate, support, and nurture. And while no community is flawless, it is breathtaking just what you have all achieved. I want to sincerely thank you for everything you have done, and continue to do.
Thank you, yes, you!
You are amazing. Continue to do amazing things.
3 Replies to “VSS365 – my thoughts”
Just when I was at the brink of giving up hope of ever improving my writing, I discovered vss365. It was a year ago this July. It opened my mind and allowed me to create with just a little push. When I received my first like from writers I respect, I was giddy. And when my vss is retweeted it gives me hope and encouragement to keep trying. On days when my schedule is too overwhelming or the words don’t jive, I enjoy what others wrote. It has helped me focus and formulate ideas using vocabulary I may not have otherwise chosen. I am grateful for the opportunity to use the prompts when I can and look forward to stretching my abilities even more. Caleb’s email with the prompt is the very first thing I look at each and every day. So, thank you. From the bottom of my heart. Thank you.
Thank you – that is so heart-warming and uplifting to hear.
Here here! Well said, Mark!