by Sonya Chung & Lisa Peet for Bloom
As all gardeners and farmers know, seasons of dormancy are as crucial to fecundity as planting and harvesting.
Almost three years ago, a small and dedicated group of us—passionate about “non-prescriptive, zig-zag paths to creative fruition”—launched BLOOM. Since then, we’ve featured 135 “bloomer” authors—99 of whom are living, 50 of whom are debut authors and thus only at the start of their promising artistic journeys. Those whose body of work will inspire generations to come—Isak Dinesen, Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, Gaston Leroux, Sybille Bedford, Penelope Fitzgerald, P.D. James, Walker Percy, et alia—remind us that literary success comes in all shapes and sizes, and invariably via challenging life experiences.
Our contributing writers and essayists number another 45, many of them bloomers and aspiring bloomers as well. We’ve grown from a founding group of four, to a crack all-volunteer staff of seven. To all these exceptional and devoted Bloom contributors and supporters: it’s been a great privilege to work with you, and we thank you for sharing your time and talents with us and the Bloom community. It’s because of you that we’ve been able to produce original, high-quality content—every week since November 2012! We sometimes can’t actually believe we’ve done it, given the many other commitments and vocations we all juggle.
This fall of 2015, we’ve decided to take some time to rethink and re-envision what Bloom has become… and what it can be. The community that’s developed around the site has been remarkable; there is no doubt that Bloom fills a crucial and vital gap in literary life and conversation. The community grows and grows. It’s this growth and evident demand that’s prompted us to take a break from producing new content—so we can catch our breath, and also be in communication with more of you, our supporters, about where Bloom can and needs to be heading.
So please be in touch! How would you like to participate? Whom do you know who might be interested in getting involved with Bloom’s transition? We are exploring partnerships, collaborations, fundraising and business plans, staff and content restructuring; in the meantime, we’d love to hear from you if you think you may have something concrete to offer this process. Like all creative and entrepreneurial endeavors, we are seeking talent, commitment, and resources. And, of course, please let us know whenever you discover some new blooming talent you think we should know about—we’ll still be active on Facebook and Twitter.
During this time of bloom-site.com’s dormancy, we trust that we will all continue to cultivate and nourish our deepest and most fecund roots. You can look for more stories of inspiring bloomers at our sister site The Millions, where we will continue to publish “Post-40 Bloomers.” And please continue to visit and spread the word about Bloom—which will remain online as a clearinghouse and resource.