After hours of prayer and the loving advice of family and friends, I've come to some difficult decisions about the future of Firewind Productions. The time has come to share them with you.
Seventeen years ago, I accepted my first web design project. As a freshman at Northwest Christian College, I was excited about HTML and web technologies. I learned HTML inside and out, and after three weeks of furious study I was fluent enough to write my code from scratch. I embraced CSS and other technologies and tried to stay abreast of the wave of innovation that was sweeping the internet. Over these almost two decades, I have tried to do my best and be my best for my clients. I've not always been successful, but I have tried hard and for the most part I am proud of the work that I have done.
In 2004, I began an intensive process of testing content management systems to bring better rich media and rich content management to my clients. In 2007, I reorganized and relaunched my business under the name Firewind Productions in honor of the new philosophy that I found for content-driven websites and idea ignition. Since then, as Lindsay reminded me last night, I have been a part of a number of success stories.
However, all of that came at a price. Between my position at the Moneysaver Printshop and Firewind, I was essentially working two full-time jobs. I would frequently put in 12-14 hour days and was burning the candle at both ends. In 2010, I lost the Printshop position and survived two heart attacks. Other health problems followed a family tragedy and my recovery was longer than I anticipated. Still, Firewind survived and I made it through almost three years with it as my main source of income.
In May of this year, I accepted a contract position with the art department at Clearwater Paper Corporation. Since then, I have done my best to meet my website clients' needs the best I can, while once again working a full-time position. It's become clear that I can no longer do so. I am no longer working with the developers that I have worked with since 2007, and I have been unable to secure the capital needed to meet rising expenses I have paid for out of personal funds. My health has suffered greatly from the stress and lack of sleep. And, most recently, two website projects that I have invested a great deal of time and money into have failed.
After many hours of prayer and consultation, I have come to several decisions. First of all, I want to assure you that Firewind is not going away. However, I am reorganizing once again. I absolutely will not abandon my existing website clients and will honor their contracts as long as they will allow me to serve them. The present hosting setup that my current website clients are using will continue as long as they need. But, I am sorry to say, the new hosting/content delivery system I invested so much time and money into will not move forward, and I will not be personally taking on new website clients at this time.
I have come to the realization that I am trying to be something that I am not. Programming and coding have never been a strength for me, though I have done the best that I can and have invested thousands of hours and considerable savings into training and study. What it comes down to is that I am primarily a designer, not a developer, and while I have done what I can it simply isn't good enough anymore. After seventeen years of trying to make myself into something that I am not, I have come to accept that the best solution for my website clients isn't going to be found with the present systems I have been using. I am in the process of examining and interviewing prospective web developers and content solution providers to partner with to continue to provide the services my clients have come to expect so that I can focus on my strengths and allow others who have gifts in website development to use their strengths to serve my clients better.
I am, primarily, an artist and designer, educator and musician. I have been providing those services for nineteen years, have built a portfolio filled with successes and have certainly made my mark on the Lewis-Clark Valley. I've built an enormous network of contacts and service providers across multiple industries, and stand ready to connect you with the highest quality printing and manufacturing at excellent prices. I have been successful as an educator with LCSC Workforce Training, and with consulting and training services that I provide in conjunction with the many resources I have acquired over the years. I am proud of the audio and video production work I have done. Firewind Productions will continue to provide those services as long as you will give me the honor of serving you. But, again, I personally will not be taking on any new website clients at this time. My intention at this point is to refer new website contracts to the web developer(s) and content solution providers I end up partnering with. I hope to be able to serve you in the ways that I am most gifted, while partnering with other service providers for products and services they can do better.
Secondly, in order to put my family first and for various health reasons, I will not be taking normal service calls before seven a.m. or after seven p.m. unless they are an emergency or have been previously arranged. The new FirewindProductions.com will launch with a service ticketing system to help me better serve you.
Thank you, everyone who has allowed me to serve you on the Internet over these past seventeen years. May God bless you and your endeavors. I hope that you will continue to let me serve you in the other capacities that better suit my strengths.