Personal History

I’ve spent the last few days updating my website DianaRajchel.com. I decided to correct the half-assed job I did on my C.V., and in the process I found myself doodling the old Medea’s Chariot site into the wayback machine. Squatters got it around 2005 or so, and some of my early essays explaining Wicca to the confused from the point of a newbie are probably lost to the ages. (People would crib the spells, but the essays not as much. Still makes me nuts.) However – ALL my old Medea’s Storm essays were still intact, along with a few responses. I’d already spent a chunk of the day grabbing screenshots from my old Examiner blog – the posts still exist despite a “that person doesn’t exist” statement when I search for myself. ((No, I was never paid for my work for them, ever. I also found the editors ignored emails on content-related issues.)) I went ahead and cut and pasted as much of the old storm content as I had, found my original C.V. that looks so so tiny compared to what I have now, and as the day went on and compiling my writing experienced took longer and longer I realized that perhaps I do have something to show for myself at 35.

After about an hour of cutting and pasting, I found myself with more than 30,000 words of text from Medea’s Storm alone. I haven’t reread my essays yet – I’m still doing my end of year/beginning of year clearinghouse work. But now I’m really hoping to find as much of my old work as possible. I already plan to release a personal anthology from work where copyright has reverted back to me. Now I’m remembering the guide for the student pagan that I wrote – that was rejected by most publishers – that was also gladly redistributed by other college Pagan organizations. I never thought I’d find myself glad of those liberal cut-and-paste monkeys that were constantly grabbing my work. Unfortunately, the service that mirrored Medea’s Chariot wholesale was sold this year and that means that much of it may well be lost for good.

I’m also finding scores of things I forgot I ever wrote. In a few essays I’ve dug up, I feel like my writing then is better then than my writing now. Maybe it was the college brain feed, or something else. I also know I outgrew Medea’s Chariot, and I often felt like people around me were consciously dismissive of my considerable work on it to “put me in my place” ((dismissive behavior, especially among women, is a topic I intend to address here. I can think of a specific circumstance where I am guilty of it, too.))  Since the site died after my divorce, I stayed away from it, but now I really do want to collect what I can.