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For New List Members

2000 - To keep up or not to keep up with list email

There was a list member who was feeling over whelmed with the amount of posts that come into the list. This is the reply I wrote to her. 


Since we are a busy list and encourage bonding for friendship and off
topic posts there's the fact that there's a lot of email that does
come in, and this list is only one of the lists that most of us are

I have this one LEXX List, Kai Estrogen Brigade. They are a third the
size of this list and match us post for post. So a couple of thousand
posts this last month for this list and another couple of thousand
posts from KEB. What do I do?

Since I'm committed here I take care of the posts that are on this
list first. Before my personal email as folks will tell ya true.

When I'm busy claying, no posts get replies unless someone calls out
to me directly, "NJ do you remember that url for ...." I'll stop
claying for those posts but I'll let the river of posts to the list
keep flowing and go back to claying. I check the posts every few
hours or so during the day and if no one's hair is on fire, no one
has a pressing need for a personal shimpoipoi, I'll go back to
finishing up a tutorial, take pictures, get them posted, yadda yadda
yadda (as my girlfriend Prima in Florida just loves to say).

When I'm busy claying I do stop to take care of list admin. You'd be surprised to know how much time that takes
up. So if you see that I have announced a tutorial but I've not
posted a lot to the list you can assume that I'm wrestling anacondas
in the background.

Since there isn't a particular lesson plan that comes with a test at
the end of the week there's no particular reason to follow any of the
posts all that closely.

Other list members have written to me and said, "What am I do to?
There's too many posts coming in from the clayart list!"

Don't read what you don't have time to read. Seems simple enough.
It's not like you're going to miss out on anything, the messages are
all there in the digest for when folks do have less on their dance

If you have a question ask it, then scan the digests for the answer
to that question.

If you have a tip you can share it with the list and scan for folks
saying, "Golly, that's great, thanks."

If you're not "into" SciFi TV programs, scan and go past the posts
that are not relevant.

If you don't have kids or pets and if folks are chatting all friendly
like about such stuff, skip it if you're deep into production for
sales for the holidays, which I would think you are with those CUTE
dollhouse items you have on your site. LOVE the bathroom stuff,
little shelves with towels and such on them, just too cute.

Folks get all wonky about thinking they have to read all the posts,
or answer all the posts.

LELAXXX, as my mother would say, relax. Just scan the digest and if
something jumps out at you, then respond. If nothing jumps out at you
then don't. But there's no reason for any angst.

I'm always pointing the beginning of the list to the people who are
new to clay but old to miniatures, since miniaturists started this
list and we had a good bunch of people to start out with. Now these
posts are a couple of years old, right? They are still relevant for
the information they give. They are as new as the person who reads
them the first time. I keep on reminding my sister that the News on
TV is really "OLD" because it happened long enough ago for it to get
filmed, broadcasted and or printed. She retorts, "Well it's NEW to
ME." ok, older sister, point taken.

So the posts that are a couple of weeks old will still be new to you
if that's the first time you've read them. They will still be
relevant when you have time to read them with less of a time crunch
leaning on you.

A lot of the time if there's a particular person I want to perk up,
like when I'm making things for Paulo, I know he's busy. I know he's
working on opening a new Hospital. I know he checks the list so if
there's something in particular I want him to see, or if he wants me
to see we'll put names in the subject line. Makes it easier and I get
fast results as you can see when I pull his white doctor's coat in
the subject line. If you're wanting a particular person to respond
put their name in the subject line, when they answer it'll have that
personalization there and you can find it quickly in the digest.

Again, for everyone:
Snip un needed portions of the post you're replying to. It's a
kindness and the digest folks will thank you for it in their hearts.

Change the subject line if the subject shifts and changes, so
everyone looking for a particular subject on the web by using "up
thread" won't end up getting biscuit recipes when they were looking
for dremel sanders.

And don't angst if you can't keep up with the messages. They are in
archive, in digests on your machines.

Do trim the amount of lists you're on. I had to do that. As much as I
would like to lend support to the other lists and be a pal to
the moderator, I couldn't possibly keep up and I wasn't into feeling
guilty for focusing my attention to this list, the clay and the admin
I do each day. So I unsubscribed to most of the other lists, not
out of any negative energy, just knowing what my limits are.

A lot of people who are subscribed to too many lists often ask us to tell folks to stop posting about this or that subject, usually a subject that they
have issues with.

Ya, I'll say that again. Those folks who put too much on their plate
ask us to stop doing what we're doing because they are overwhelmed.
Needless to say, I don't ask the list members to stop
posting, we suggest to the person who is overwhelmed to go on NoMail
or Digest or let go of the other lists that are not being utilized
all that much.

Just like some of us had to stop watching the TV so we can center
ourselves after the WTC attack, I had to quit lists that were too
negative, too hateful and too angry. I needed to settle my energies
and leaving lists that are not adding positive value to my life I
don't have energy for. Nothing personal, it is just serious, is all.

So there it is then, relax, there's no race here.

I'm off to get on my machine now that the phone line is free and
James is bumping about.



Then one of the moderators of the MSATClayArt wrote that she had felt she had to read every post.


Thanks NJ I REALLY needed to read that post! It is a KEEPER! I find I am one of them that feels like I have to read and answer every post, and it just ain't so!
Barb "Twilightelf"
First of all Barb, if you're doing a bunch of stuff for the list you are already doing something for the list. Keep us updated as to the new things you've loaded up when they are ready for prime time viewing. All else get prioritized as your energy permits. Now don't make me have to tell you that your health is of utmost concern for us here. Not eating, not taking your meds on time, not getting your rest, not having fellowship with the family cannot be put before the list, the clay, or erotic pen pal exchanges.... ooops, that's my distraction, not yours, but you get my drift. (I read that to James and he laughed, "you're soooo bad.")
One has to pace oneself for a day in and day out 24/7 deal like moderating a busy list like this one is. It's really easy to feel bad... Michele/luny, you hear me in this too. It's really easy to feel bad that one isn't keeping up. There's too much for keep up with. That's why I have co moderators. I need to delegate stuff to others because I know I can't keep up. That's why I encourage Melly to teach us about the chat room options. Anyone who has questions about how to function in chat can ask Melly. We have two WebTV beta testers to make sure what we share can be shared by all. It's a group effort here. Sometimes as a moderator one has to set back on purpose and let the list flow, let folks make friends, show each other stuff.
It's not just for the moderators but anyone on any list should toss a quarter in the jar if they say to themselves, "How can I keep up?"
Who said you had to keep up? No body.  Was there a race? Was a contest or challenge given? <looking right and left and between her breasts> I didn't get a notice of any of those competitive events taking place here on this list.  The only person you're competing with is yourself, your own expectations, which can be adjusted.
This brings us to the concept of expectations lead to disappointment. Running after uncatchable expectations, ones that are not reasonable, leads to angst.
Now I would like to flatter myself and think that folks on the list read each and every one of my posts. But as we saw with the public unsubmissions, just days after I wrote to the list twice about how rude I felt that was proves to the whole list that even my golden prose is not read. Not each and every one, if they were folks would know that certain things just push hot buttons in me.  Push on purpose then we will just have to box, that's all there is to it. LOL  Picture me posing in the Marques of Canterbury Rules position of "duke's up".
For goodness sake, folks, we're here mucking about in this little claypen and we're supposed to be having fun. When your doll houses and miniatures and wee bits of colorful clay don't cheer you up then post to the list and get a hug.  I will do what I can to goose muses by chronicling my experiments with polymer clay, some call them tutorials, I call them clay journals. Just documenting, the successes and miscalculations. But no one is keeping track, comparing your work to some presubscribed lesson where individual expression is not invited. There are no tests, no grades, no pop quizzes unless they are for movie quotes. Like who said "Now that pisses me off to no end." Clue - the speaker is hundreds of years old.
So relax already. Eat when you are supposed to, take your meds, clay when the spirit moves you, but no one is expecting anyone to keep up with each and every post on this list. If folks felt they had to it would take the fun out of stuff.
This is like a party, a coffee klatch or cocktail party. Different groups of people are talking and there's three hostesses bustling about in the kitchen, answering the door and chatting with the guests. That's how I feel it is. At parties we're supposed to be having fun, so I suggest folks just get on with their merry making when they are not making something out of polymer clay.

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