Year One at the Red Dirt Chronicles: Committing a “Take Back” on the Editor’s Choice Essays

This is the office scene of which I am a part most every late night and sometimes early in the morning.  It’s where I do my editing work for the Red Dirt Chronicles.  And, where I write. And where I follow up on work from my days in Stillwater that might not be quite finished.  It’s also where Mick checks out the news headlines when he comes home from work, where Rylee’s boyfriend interfaces with his home computer when he’s visiting and where our family gathers sometimes for impromptu hang-out sessions.  My home office gets lots of miles.  However, it’s gotten more than I’ve wished for since I’ve been on vacation.  Why?  Because I’ve been trying to create a “RDC Year-One Top Essays” list for a solid seven days…on and off.

I hate this job.  Who gave it to me?  Me.  Who’s going to take it away? Yep – me.  Why?  Because I can and I don’t want to do it any more.

For the past four days, all I’ve wanted is a “take back” like Will challenged Skylar about in Good Will Hunting. (about 3:30 on the link; rated R dialogue)

Here’s why: I devised a method and began my approach.  I started reviewing all our posts, beginning back in August when our contributors began submitting their essays.  Over the next couple of months, more contributors came on board and they also submitted work which built our readership. I chose my favorites from August, then September and finally made it through October.  By the time I had completed October, my “Top Ten” candidates were 23 strong…and I was just beginning November.


Then I thought, “Perhaps I should just highlight categories and ‘best of’s within those topics.”  So I created categories.  Then I started November, and my list grew to 30.  This reeked, because I had already published the “top 25 most read posts” at the end of July.  This list couldn’t be longer, it needed to be more succinct. Then I read through December…and gave up.

That’s it, I give up.  Instead, I’ve decided to run a “Throwback Thursday” afternoon post until I get all the way through my favs of 2010.  I may run them in “thematic” groups, or just individually with the full-post text.  And, when I get to August 2011, I’ll figure out what to do from there…in my office, late at night or early in the morning.




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