This is definitely not the title I had envisioned nor the post that I had planned for this point in time but this is the post I have for you today. I am hoping that in sharing this openly that it might somehow inspire someone in the same condition and let them know that they are not alone. Failure on its own is not bad since what becomes of you after is more important than the failure itself.
This post is a story of my passion and drive for a particular domain and how I have struggled and failed repeatedly to bring it to its full potential. Where do I start, I will try a quick summary of events leading to my latest failure. I purchased Petmemorial(dot)com a couple of years ago in the secondary market. At the time of purchase, all I had was passion and love for animals.
My decision to buy the domain name then was as a result of some live events and a special dog called Hanna. Prior to purchasing the domain, I owned PetHall and it used to be a portal for pet lovers. In its prime PetHall offered free email, greeting cards and a lot of things which by today’s standards is not a big deal but was a big deal sometime around 2000 and 2003. When Hanna a German Shepard mix which belonged to my then girlfriends mother passed away, she was so devastated and frankly it could be said that words can not clearly describe how my girlfriends mother felt. However I did notice the soothing feeling Hanna’s memorial in PetHall gave her. At that very moment my ambition to provide a place where grieving pet owners can feel better and mingle with other pet lovers who may be able to provide comfort was born. I purchased pet memorial a couple of months later and almost starved doing it. I was a lowly Airman with the US Air Force at the time.
From day one, I have never lacked ambition or ideas for pet memorial (PM) but I have never been able to bring my ideas for this wonderful domain to fruition. In the early days, it forwarded to pethall/petmemorial and then as my interest in pethall wained, my interest in PM grew.
I moved it to its own hosting and that was when the journey began. PM has been a Frontpage site, a Subdreamer site, it has been vbadvanced/vbulletin adapted site, It has been a Geek Articles and Review adapted site and even a WordPress site and while it went through all these changes, my vision for the site remained strong, despite the fact that I was not getting it to be all it could be.
In 2006 when I was in the desert supporting the armed forces, I had 10 hours of spare time and a slow but available computer. I quickly set out for a coder and hired the best one I could find at vWorker then known as Rent-a-Coder. When this guy was done, What I got was a skeleton of what I had envisioned. I learned a hard lesson then which is to make sure everything in future is spelled out in writing. Do not assume anything when contracting a job. Some of these coders can be funny in there ways. Needless to say, that development went no where, my money was gone and I still could not use the site he built. I however salvaged two functionality from his work which we call post-a-paw and light-a-candle. I patched these two functionality to the site as I went back to using and adapted vbulletin engine.
This year I wanted to make sure I focused on one domain or site.
From the middle of this year, I had one goal. It was simple. To finally bring PM to its full glory. I got two sample sites to explain the workings of a memorial site, I then proceeded to pen down every detail of how my PM would work. I posted the job again at a freelance site. I had over 30 bids. I then proceeded to ask each one of them questions to see if they even understood what they claim they can do. Most never replied satisfactorily. There was however one particular coder/company who was rated #22 out of over 300,000 of his peers who impressed me. He wrote flawless English, and when I fired him with a 10 point questionnaire, he proceeded to answer each and everyone of my questions. He was by far NOT the cheapest, he was not exactly the most expensive but he was up there; top 5 in pricing. He was however the most highly rated in expertise amongst those that bid on the job.
I am going to cut a long story short here. My coder was never able to complete the job despite 3 extensions. What bothered me the most was that the main functionality that mattered to me was never really done even though he had completed 70 percent of the site. Another issue was the fact that his so called completed work was littered with avoidable errors and bugs. I got tied of spending almost 5 hours daily combing through his work to point out errors and omissions. When I finally pulled the plug on the project, it was not as much the fact that he never finished the job but more along the lines that I did not think he could ever finish the job. He had hit his limit. He is a great coder but with very little imagination. The back-end of his work was an apology to say the least. Luckily for me this time, I had a very descriptive contract with clear spelled out expectations so I was able to work out with my funds.
I am gradually bringing back PM to a WordPress site as of the time of this writing. In domaining as in live, you will hit many roadblocks but somehow the difference between winners and losers is often determined by whether you get up and keep fighting or you trow in the towel. I have decided I will fight to the end even though at times like this it becomes difficult to keep a positive attitude yet it is at times like this that one needs a positive attitude the most.
Forgive me domainers for this should have been a grand tale of the successful launch of the best pet memorial site the world have ever seen, a place where grieving pet owners can find some comfort and solace. Yes I have failed yet again but by Gods grace, I will succeed some day. If this becomes my last post before Christmas; Merry Christmas everyone and may the New Year bring forth great insights and blessings from the most high.
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