This all started out of curiosity, simple as that.
One day, I was sitting in the garden, idly swinging on the tyre when I began to wonder if I could start an on-line satirical newspaper. Stupid, stupid, stupid Chatty.
Just to give that remark a bit of context, I was not a writer, journalist nor did I work in IT. Being far more inclined to drink beer, eat too much cheese and play a little golf, this was a distinct change of tack.
I wasn’t completely niave, I had worked in business and used to send write articles for The Rochdale Herald. When it comes to IT, I am very much of the ‘keep hitting keys until it does something that looks about right’ school of computing. But, I had always been curious about building a website, it seemed like an interesting challenge.
Of course, what I really needed was some to club me over the head, say “that’s enough of that nonsense” and stop me.
Unfortunately, no one did, so I ended up building an online satirical newspaper, The Chatty Chimp.
Even worse was to come, people began following The Chatty Chimp and then some of them started sending in stories. WTF? So we started sharing the site on Facebook and Twitter, where the public didn’t seem to hate it.
One day someone asked, what is it that makes The Chatty Chimp different? I had to think about that one for a while but I came to the conclusion that it is the focus on new writers, people who are relatively unknown or had little writing experience.
Whilst some of Chatty’s writers are professional most aren’t. Our little team tries to provide a positive environment for people ‘to have a go’. There are so many funny people out there, that don’t even think of trying something like this.
We ambled along, tried different things, had loads of ideas and met lots of interesting and creative people, most of whom were complimentary. Nice.
Then, one day, it was crunch time. Whilst The Chatty Chimp was not hugely expensive to run, it was a steady financial drain. Image rights being particularly expensive. Personally, I had exceeded what I was looking to do, so now the question was “What do I do next?”.
I could carry on running it, spend the money and look at it as an enjoyable hobby or try and develop it into something that could make enough money to cover its cost’s and develop it a bit further.
Option one would have freed up a lot of time, saved much anguished crying and reduced the chocolate biscuit consumption at Chatty Towers. Option 2 was more interesting.
So that is where we are at. We launched The Chatty Chimp’s Market Stall, not to get rich, although should wads of cash turn up I won’t say “No!’, but to make enough to cover the costs of running the Newspaper.
So help us out, buy something!