Who, What, Where,
Why & How
First off, we're not going to tell you who actually chooses the stories
because we want the stories to speak for themselves. The person responsible
for most of the site design, actually asking most of the authors
for their stories and the posting of the non-story pages is Mardi Quinn
who can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Randy Saavedra donated the server space and also does some of the design
and formatting [which is nice of her because Bonanza isn't even
her main fandom as you can see by the domain name]. The actual story
selection committee for the Best of the West Bonanza Fan Fiction
site has decided to stay anonymous, partially to avoid the inevitable pressure
from friends and strangers who want us to post stories that don't meet
the standards we want to honor. We also want to have the stories
we select judged on their own merit, not on the basis of who selected them.
This site will honor and make accessible the best written Bonanza
fan fiction on the internet.
WHERE: Right here.
Thanks to Randy with a fansite for her favorite cowboy/biker/villain actor,
William Smith [Laredo, Wildside, western guest shots, Falconetti
in Rich Man, Poor Man, biker flicks, horror flicks, blaxploitation,
etc.] we have lots of server space for a quality Bonanza fan fic
site. [A bad link will default to the Big Bad Bill home page - don't
WHY: The quantity
of Bonanza fan fiction has increased geometrically over the past
few years. Because posting on the internet is so cheap and easy compared
to printing in fanzines, there's a lot of -- how do we say this politely
- of stuff we don't want to read. This includes stories with characters
not recognizable as the Cartwrights we grew up with, stories written by
writers who never heard of beta readers, stories by authors who want
to live their own fantasies or address their own psychological needs by
writing about characters with the name Cartwright but without the personas
of the characters gifted to us by Bonanza creators.
There should be a place for writers who care enough to produce quality
writing and to honor the source material.
Of course, no one has to read
anything they don't like, but it's gotten difficult to wade through the
mud to get to the grassy picnic spot, to rake through the chaff to get
to the wheat, to push aside the swine to get to the pearls - well you get
the picture. Sometimes it's hard to pick out the good writers in
the mob. Or a reader might miss that one really topnotch
story by a writer who is otherwise still struggling to hit the right note
most of the time. Readers might have dismissed a writer
based on her early work and missed the good stuff that came later.
We want to make sure all those good stories don't get overlooked.
In any fan fiction
world, there is a need for several types of posting sites. An all-purpose
site is needed, where almost anyone can post a story, no matter how good
or bad and be very accessible to the reading public [e.g. BBAB where Kathy
maintained a vast library in a very readable format and the current Bonanza-Legacy
which appears to be on its way to gathering its own large library].
But, there's also a place for other types of sites, more controlled,
such as sites that allow no major original characters or stories of only
limited length or no AU's or AR's or WHN's or have a content rating limit
(e.g.. Grotto Cafe or Women Writers Block). It's also valid to have
a site where the selections are judged to be the best of what's available,
so that as a new fan develops discriminating taste or when the fan has
very little time, she can find the better stories without wading through
miles of garbage. That's where we come in.
HOW: The first
100 stories selected were chosen by an anonymous committee of fan
fiction readers who are very familiar with Bonanza characters/canon
and the principles of good fiction writing. We are getting recommendations
for additional stories/authors from the selected authors and will eventually
get some from readers.