Well, I have been working on tackling the poetry reorganization according to my plan. I have made a lot of progress.

I decided that, as is usually best practice in a major reorganization of anything, the first step was to organize and get a handle on what I had. So I brought up the old OSB website, my Website 12 poetry page, and my most recent poetry page. Armed with those three websites, I dove in and started accounting for everything in my poetry folder.

What I found was, indeed, the hairy mess I figured it would be. But it is better now.

There are three ‘tracks’ of poetry organization that I’ve gone through (which is funny, because I’d completely forgotten one of them). The “OSB” track was the way the poems were presented on the old OSB band website. The “Web8″ track is the way the poems were presented from Website 8 to Website 12. The “Web13″ track is the way the poems were presented from Website 13 to Website 15.

Most of the OSB track existed in a semi-organized fashion among my archives, so I simply had to go through and mess with them a little and confirm that they properly mirrored what was on the old OSB website. Likewise, most of the Web13 track existed and needed only minor adjustment.

The Web8 track was the real challenge, since it was the track that was active through most of those computer changes and so forth. Many of the original files for the Web8 track were lost either in the Great Hard Drive Failure or in my switch to Macintosh (due, I’m sure, to my error).

What also took a long time was that, after organizing the files themselves, I decided to homogenize them. So, I loaded up each poem in whatever word processor could load its type of file and converted them all to the semi-universal Rich Text Format (RTF), made them all the same font and size, and otherwise made them similar in format.

There is still more to do. I have to work some more with that pesky Web8 track to make sure I have created new “originals” for all the collections from that era, and I’m also planning to sit down with my handwritten drafts and make sure I’ve typed up anything that might not have been typed in the first place (for a while, I only typed the ones I was really happy with).

Once I’ve done those things, I’ll have a pretty comprehensive archive of my poetry from the day I started writing it up ’til now, all formatted the same and in RTF format. Once I have that, I’ll be able to start reorganizing and editing and culling to figure out what I want to put on the internet for your enjoyment.

In the mean time, you’ll notice that the “Poetry” menu item has disappeared from the main menu. That’s because I have set up the poetry section so only I can view it. That way I can start publishing the poems and getting it so I’m happy with how they’re organized, and then make them available to the world all at the same time when I’m done.