Tuesday, July 3, 2012

the break

As most of you know Sketch Support is taking a break. I thought I would give a little more detail into that. I've spent my life worrying about what people think and trying not to upset anyone. (I spent three years covering up a tattoo because I didn't want to upset my mom. Hello! I'm almost 32!) I'm not really going to worry about that in this post.

Simply put, I'm not a good leader. I avoid confrontation like it's a plague and often times worry a little too much about other's feelings. Until Sketch Support I honestly thought those were great qualities that I was proud to possess. Proud, that is, until I realized that, as selfish as it may seem, if you don't worry about your own feelings, you'll never survive. I take that back. You'll survive but you'll be miserable.

I spent the entire time running a team and worrying constantly about their feelings. Missed deadlines and not making requirements and I could only say "Oh, it's okay..." Then I was frustrated and mad at myself for not standing up and saying, "You know what, it's not okay." I took that frustration and stress and bottled it up. Bottled it up into a 50 pound weight gain, severe depression, and weekly meetings with a therapist.

Don't get me wrong, the Sketch Support team was a fantastic group of women that I, with the exception of a few, very much enjoyed working with. They had talent, were fun, creative, respectable, and understood responsibility. I think so very highly of those girls.

Unfortunately, the girls that I admired and enjoyed where often overshadowed by the disrespectful and deceitful few on the team. You know how they say one bad apple can ruin the bunch. So true! After one particular incident with one team member I was done. Sketch Support was no longer enjoyable for me. What little fun that was left had been sucked out by a person that I had considered a friend. It was heartbreaking and I felt betrayed. In hindsight, I should have known.

Another thing that led to the break (I may need to duck and cover for this...) was the lack of comments. It was beginning to seem that Sketch Support was losing a lot of interest. I felt like I was yelling down a dark hole, "Hellllooooooo? Is anyone there?" I knew that people were visiting the site but I just couldn't understand the lack of comments. I could only assume that it was a lack of interest in the content. It was starting to feel like making the sketches and putting all that time into the postings was a waste. And I carried a lot of stress seeing these wonderful layouts and projects from the team getting very little praise from our readers. I felt like it was my fault since it was my site and my sketches. Again, I bottled it up.

The only interest we could seem to drum up was when we did a giveaway. When I saw that that was the only time we got comments, I stopped doing so many giveaways. I was so frustrated that we only seemed worthy of time when we offered even more free stuff. I know you see this on every blog that does giveaways and I'm not saying we were something special that deserved hundreds of comments on each post. What I am saying though, is that if you enjoy a site it doesn't hurt every now and then to say so. The way I see it is if I stood in our store and handed out free sketches and layout examples to our shoppers, I bet every single one would take the time to say "Thank you." Again, I'm not saying that every single visit to our site should have resulted in a thank you or a comment. I just thought those girls deserved a lot more praise and support than they got.

Maybe I'm just being silly over that part. I don't know. I only know how it made me feel and what kind of thoughts I had on it.

I understand that a lot of people just don't see the comment situation from that perspective. It's sometimes hard to really understand situations until you yourself are in a similar situation. I used to be terrible about visiting blogs and websites and never taking the time to comment. Now that I know what it's like to be on the other side of that, I see it in such a different way.

So the question is, "Is Sketch Support going to return?" As of right now I would say probably not. For one thing, I didn't realize just how much time I was putting into that place until I took a break. I have no idea how I got it all done on top of my home life and my job. Plus, after bottling up all of the worries and stresses and troubles over a year, I was becoming very sick. I imagine it's going to take a lot of time to recover from that and I'm going to take the necessary time to do it.

One thing I do know is that I won't remove Sketch Support. Everything will stay as it is and available to everyone. 

I feel much, much better now that I got that off my chest.  :)

89 comments:

Janet Zeppa said...

Oh my goodness Allison!!! How awful that you have been walked all over just because you are so nice!
I'm glad to hear that you are taking time for you and time to heal. All the best to you. :)

HeatherK said...

Hope your health improves and you enjoy your family time. Scrapping using your sketched brought me nothing but joy and I hope that they bring that to you again one day.

Scrapthat said...

Oh Allison....I'm so sorry to hear that you were stressed by the site and the few DT member's that gave you grief!
I'm also sorry that I didn't stop in to comment more often! I kinda felt you were so popular of a site that my one little comment probably didn't make a huge difference. I should have let you know more often how much I loved the sketches and the different spins on them.
Thank you (if a little late) for all the extra hard work you did to provide a fabulous site and inspiration!! :D

ScrappinKaren said...

Oh Allison, I am so sorry to hear of the stress you have been under and completely understand the reasons for needing a break. I also want to apologize for not commenting more. I have love every single one of your sketches and all of the variations I have seen. Your work has inspired me to become a better scrapbooker. I will always appreciate all you have contributed.

Joan said...

Allison, I hope you realize the impact for good you have had on the scrapbooking world. We have been guilty of not expressing our appreciation often enough, but I know I speak for many, many scrapbookers when I say that your sketches bring joy to our scrapbooking and quality and efficiency to our layouts. Those of us who use your sketches regularly cannot imagine scrapping without them. Take as much time as you need to heal, and know that we are praying for you and will continue to use your wonderful work until you (we hope!) eventually create even more of your wonderful sketches.

Bethany Rielage said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story and your thoughts. I'm sure that it wasn't easy for you to do that. I don't know you personally, but I have greatly benefited from this site (and your other materials), and I appreciate everything you have done and will continue to do. Having said that, you have to put your family and health first, and I'm sorry to hear about all the stress and frustration that you have been through. I will continue to use your sketches and ideas, and I loved all of them! Thank you!

kellystar said...

why is it so hard for moms to not feel guilty? You are not alone. Hurray for you to recognize that you need more time for yourself...and deservingly so. I have loved your sketches, and I think part of the reason comments are down is because if others are like me, I read my blogs in google reader...I scroll through and read all/most of the posts of all the blogs I follow, but just can't comment on the 75+ posts I'm scrolling through. So, I'm sure you had traffic that just doesn't get counted as views. Thank you! And, thank you for leaving the blog up so I can go back and use sketches I never saw and re-use ones I loved.

Denise G said...

I love your blog and the inspiration that it offers. I am sorry that I have not personally commented. I hope that you will find a new "happy" place that showcases your talent. I am thrilled to know that you won't be taking the postings down. Enjoy the summer days and know that you are appreciated.

joel & ginny said...

Hugs, Allison! I wouldn't be able to deal well with that kind of situation either. Thank you for keeping Sketch Support up and congrats on the great success of the kits at Scrapbook Generation. I'm a long time fan of your work and I appreciate how you continue to share inspiration! I'm not good at commenting, because I read blogs in Google Reader. I need to get better at that! All the best to your and your family!

Ashley Horton said...

Allison, I am glad you were able to share more of your feelings on this and I hope you will continue to move toward less stress, in your busy life. I was happy to be a part of the Team for part of the year and loved working with your sketches!!

snapdragon said...

You know, sometimes, I just hit your site quickly for inspiration and then moved on. I thought I was just a small fish in a big pond and it didn't matter much. But my mom raised me to be appreciative, and so I apologize.
I really found the sketch support to be useful. I even thought about sending you pictures of what I did with your ideas, but I just didn't always have time. And sometimes I just didn't have confidence that my layouts would measure up to the amazing work I saw on this site.
Thanks for sharing your creativity. Thanks for sharing your passion. I hope this year brings you less stress and more fun with your beautiful boys.

Beth Hallgren said...

Allison,

I'm one of the ones that didn't comment much. I love looking at blogs but I find that I don't have enough time to comment on all of them. Plus, I'm ashamed to admit that I don't type so it takes me longer.

Getting that off your chest was the first step in your recovery. I too suffer from severe depression and some days it is a struggle to just get out of bed. I don't talk about this because I'm afraid of being ostracized from the scrapbooking community.

I want to thank you for your sketches, I love them! Many of my layouts using your sketches have been published and I'm embarrased to admit that sometimes I forgot to credit you. Please know it was never intentional.

I hope you feel better and enjoy your time with your boys.

Highest Regards,

Beth

Katrina said...

Allison,
I'm so sorry that running Sketch Support took such a toll on you. I'm another that never commented just because it didn't occur to me that a tiny comment on such a big blog would matter. I know better now. I will miss the new content on Sketch Support... when I scrap, it is the site that is up on my computer screen 9 times out of 10, giving me inspiration. Your sketches changed the way I work for the better. I really appreciate that. Too little, too late... but THANK YOU. I hope you feel better soon.

Cynthia B. said...

Oh, I feel so bad that I didn't comment more often! I did - and do - appreciate all you've done with these wonderful sketches and inspiration! So sorry that you had to go through much stress. I'm guilty of bottling things up too, and my family takes the brunt of the grumpiness that results from my stress. So kudos to you for taking the break that you need for your family.
Thanks for updating us on the changes. Please know that you have a ton of followers that appreciate you and wish you all the best!

CodyandTraci said...

You are a very inspiring person. Thank you for sharing your feelings, and your creativity, and being an example to me. Take all the time you need for yourself, so you can be the best you that you can, then those you love will be happier as well.

Katrina said...

Girlie, you know I am behind you 110% on EVERYTHING you do! I loved the fact that you let me be a part of the amazing thing call Sketch Support. The one thing I am most happy about is now I have another scrappy buddy! If you ever need help in anything, you know I am here! hugs, Katrina

CreativeChretin said...

You go girl! You are amazing no matter what you do! Like you've said before your boys and husband come first and everything else after that should be FUN, not stress, especially when it's supposed to be a hobby. I think you are extremely talented and i'm sorry you feel so defeated. :(

Anonymous said...

I "second/third/fourth" all the comments that were added to this post. I too feel bad for not leaving a comment.. I too have a blog.. and I know how it feels to not have comments, so I started seeing my blog as my diary... which is totally different than what you were providing. I also read your personal blog because you are such an inspiration. I love your scrapbook generation blog as well and all the products that ya'll produce. I have gotten so much of my scrapbooking done by using your sketches, kits, etc.. keep up the good work and I will make an effort to leave comments. Again, I apologize.

Sheri in Colorado

Scrapbook Generation said...

What tattoo?!

Love you.
MOM

Christine said...

Allison, thank you for sharing! I know I was one of them who was often late with layouts...I'm sorry! I too, didn't realize how over-busy I'd let myself become until I let a lot of things go...and now I can relax with my kids. Take care, it was a joy & inspiration working with you :)

Lynette said...

Thank you Allison for your honesty and for sharing. Thank you for allowing me to be part of Sketch Support. I love your sketches and your books are my "go to" when I have no idea where to start. I will remain a faithful follower;-)

xx

Michele's Scrapy Creations said...

oh, Allison--HUGS I'm so sorry for what you went thur. I know i am one of them that didn't comment much only bc I just assume you would have tons of comments--as always I love the sketches and your DT' inspirations. It is alot of work to put into and lose yourself in the process. Take a break however long you need to recover and decide from there if you want to continue then but make it more fun for you, not work. When you ready, I'm looking forward to classes you may set up online.

Jill Sarginson said...

Sending you big hugs Allison - thanks for being such an inspiration to us with your amazing sketches and takes on them! I will miss Sketch Support but completely understand!

Suzanna said...

Thank you Allison for ALL that you have done for me personally, the scrappy world and the true honor of being a part of Sketch Support. I am sorry that it took such a toll on you and hope that you can look down the road and see happiness. Sometimes our dark days lead to a fuller, more complete living. {{ HUGS }}

Virginia said...

Allison, it has been wonderful being part of Sketch Support and as I am sure you know we all respect and support your decision. Thank you for your generosity, kindness and inspiration! Hugs, Virginia

Anonymous said...

Allison, I wanted to comment here to let you know how much I appreciated all of the effort you put into Sketch Support. I am yet another party guilty of not leaving comments despite visiting each week to check out the new sketch. There are a variety of reasons why I didn't comment, but it never dawned on me that my comment could make a difference on such a hugely popular blog. Now I know better. Take care of yourself!

Vicki said...

I wish I could take you out for coffee and give you a big hug. Worrying about other peoples feelings is a nice thing up until its not.
We should have left comments to let you know how much we loved the sketches. Your hard work was appreciated and your honesty in this post is too!.
I hope after you have had some down time that you decide to come back and maybe post once a month for us die hard fans!

reen said...

Haha! LOVE your Mom's comment!

I also LOVED the sketches blog. I'm the type of person who will sit at a table FOR HOURS with a bunch of pictures wondering where to put them, how to arrange them to look nice, on and on. I LOVE having sketches to go by. I find that by using them I'm more creative. Sounds weird when essentially I'm copying, but it really did allow me to see what I could do on my pages. Anywho...
I'm sorry things have been such a trial. I'm sorry you had to feel responsible for others short-comings. I recently stepped away from a position that left me feeling responsible for a group that DROVE ME LOOPY! I feel so much better... have fewer headaches... lost a few pounds. I still feel badly about walking away. But that's how I am too. I feel responsible for EVERYTHING. We both need to work on what makes us happy, healthy, and whole!

All the best!!

Anonymous said...

I am guilty of faithfully visiting your site every single day and NEVER leaving a comment. I am so terribly sorry. I adore your sketches and samples and I miss them so much. You and your team were such an inspiration. I understand that you need to take care of yourself and your family. I hope at some point, you will update the sketch support site once you feel healthy and renewed...

Barbara said...

I too, did not think about commenting. I am so sorry. I really do appreciate all the work, not to mention talent that goes into all the sketches and info that you share. I hope you get to feeling better and enjoy scrapping for your family. Your scrapping family understands and we wish you the best. Thank you again for all you've done.

Kelley said...

Like the others who have commented here, I appreciate all your hard work and creativity. I read blogs in Google Reader and, so, early comment unless a particular post really strikes a chord. I'm sorry.

Over the past couple of years, I've moved away from scrapbooking because it all got too hard, the expectations too high and the money outlaid too much. I'm slowly starting to warm to the idea of getting my stuff out again, so I'll be grateful of any inspiration that will make the creation of pages quick and easy, so thank you for leaving this site up.

Jennifer Cowan said...

Self gratification is a funny thing. The comments on Sketch Support really shouldn't be the reason for posting/continuing/quitting. You should be doing it because you enjoy it and it betters your brand/company. Clearly you were not happy doing it and that alone is the reason to stop.

I have more to say on this topic but will leave it at that.

I hope you reconsider and reinvent Sketch Support. I loved it for inspiration and will continue to visit the store and use the books regardless.

Hang in there and I hope all these comments help you to see the gratification.

Sue Althouse said...

Allison, you have been on my mind these past couple of months, so I'm very glad you posted this update and shared your feelings. I want to thank you for allowing me to be a part of the Sketch Support Creative Team. I loved every minute of it. I feel like I am a more confident scrapper in many ways because of the experience and I want you to know how much that means to me. Best wishes to you in the future. So sorry you had to go through rough times, here's to brighter tomorrows!

thearthurz said...

I have LOVED being part of the Sketch Support team and it was mostly due to your hard work and creativity that kept all of us inspired. I will miss the team, but understand the need to step back and lighten your load. I had no idea how in the world you kept that crazy pace as long as you did! So proud of you for recognizing the need to be more present in the parts of life that are most significant and take the necessary steps to move forward. I have always appreciated your honesty in all areas of your life, which these days is a rare and wonderful quality! Although I will miss Sketch Support so very much, I look forward to what is next for you and your family!

Anissa said...

I think your amazing and talented. Sorry to hear all your stresses. Glad you have stood up and made decisions for your health. Thats what is important. I also am glad you are realising it is not worth worrying about what people think about you anymore. While your worrying they are not and getting on with life. I have just turnt 40 and realised this. Take care and enjoy life xx

justasiam said...

I was ready to post a comment and it disappeared!! For a moment I thought "forget it" and then felt that I needed to retype the comment. I was dismayed to read your latest post initially for a purely selfish reason. I love to read your blog so much even when I only have a few minutes and I check on it daily. You have provided so much inspiration and creativeness here that I have been so excited to see what's new! It is important to have time for yourself and your family and I admire you for standing up for that. But if you decide to continue or return to blog at some later date, you can be sure we will all be there to learn from you again!

CJ Johnson said...

Good luck with your future endeavors. Sorry your feelings got hurt.

Turn off the thing that makes me try to read and type one ugly word and then a number and I'd comment more often. I hate those things. Never get them right on the first try.

debbi said...

Allison,
I have been worried about you and your family since Sketch Support took its break. I too am guilty of reading Sketch Support every day and rarely commenting even though I loved the content. I am someone who has benefitted so much from your sketches. If I named one thing that changed the way I scrapbook, it is your sketches and layouts about your boys. Not only do I always use one of your sketches now, I also remember to scrapbook about simple everyday things...which I learned from you. I want to say "thank you" now for making me happy with what I create. I do miss logging in to Sketch Support each morning but it is not your job to give me my internet scrapbook fix. You have already done so much for me and I truly appreciate it. Now go take care of you.

Linda said...

Allison,

I am sorry about the issues you have encountered. I am a big fan of yours. I have loved your work since I first stepped foot in the Scrapbook Generation. I was fortunate enough to get to meet you and take some classes wiyou taught when I went to a couple of retreats in Branson. You are an inspiration!

Keep us updated on your blog about the special little boys in your life.


I use the sketch books and love them. I really loved the online class you taught but I must admit, I wondered how does that girl do all she does. You are awesome!

Ruth said...

Just wanted to say sorry I didnt comment more, I love sketch support, escpecially the sketch itself and your layout. I introduced friends to see it too, they love it. You are really appreciated and there is a thread of 2peas where everyone is saying how great it was and how sorry they are that you had such a hard time from it. your class was so amazing, you give and give so much, we are so lucky to have you in the industry. hope things are getting better. all the best, ruth

Janet said...

Thanks so much for sharing your feelings with us. You have changed the way I scrap. I always reach for your books whenever I need inspiration. I have take a taken a few of your classes and I love Sketch Support. Sorry I didn't take the time to say all this before but I'm grateful for all you have put into the blog.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear that the lack of comments meant lack of interest. It SO didn't. You have provided so many with so much inspiration. Please take heart in the fact that your creativity and generosity inspired so many.
Sorry to hear about your other issues - hope you recover quickly and know that it is not you. That person will be nasty to everyone.

Pink Dalmatians said...

Thanks for sharing your story, sometimes we just need to vent help the healing process. I had a lot I wanted to say, but many have said my exact words. My mom got me onto your site & I have to say we both use it a lot! I came in at the end, but wish I had been around sooner. Thank you for leaving it up for us to keep using. You & your family need to come first. I scrapbook for fun & have never wanted to make it unenjoyable. I hope you can get back to that place again. You're extremely talented. One thing I wish you did was challenges & if you ever come back you need an enforcer! LOL. hang in there!

Melanie said...

I have enjoyed your sketches so much! I read Sketch Support everyday because it was in my google reader, but I didn't leave comments very often....sorry for that.

I hope you enjoy your break...and can have fun scrapbooking again!

PS: Your mom's comment made me laugh :)

Stacey said...

Allison, you are appreciated. Thank you for your wonderful sketches. I have almost all your books, subscribe to the monthly kit and visit this site regularly. I'm another one who visits through Google Reader.

I can relate to a lot of things you said. Actually, it caused me to leave scrapping for quite some time and to be honest, it was you who sparked my creativity and got me back into scrapping regularly again. I'm glad you made your decision before it got that far for you.

Hope you feel better soon.

Erica Marshall said...

I'm sorry your experience was not as good as it could have been. Your work is amazing. It is always more important to take care of yourself than worry about what others think. Kudos to you and I hope you can begin to feel better and rise above all the stress this has created for you. Best of everything to you!

Julie B said...

Wow Allison! I am so sorry that Sketch Support caused you such pain. I am doubly sorry that I rarely commented. I guess one more "cute layout!" seemed silly at the time, but now that you have bared your soul here, I can absolutely see how you could have felt awfully unappreciated. I can tell you that, from my experience with scrapbooking blogs, you had and have a loyal, devoted, inspired, borderline crazed fan base. We LOVE your work, we are totally inspired by you, we have enjoyed watching your family grow through your layouts and we wouldn't know how to scrapbook without your sketches and samples! I thank you for your time and effort, I apologize profusely for not being more respectful of the time and energy you put into Sketch Support and I want you to know that I think you are an incredibly talented artist.
Two personal notes: first, I have, on more than one occasion, joked that I run so that I don't murder anyone. I don't know if you get the chance to exercise regularly, but it might really help with the depression. Second, if Sketch Support inspired you and brought you joy before your unfortunate experience, I am certain that you can find a way to make it work for you (post once a week instead of every day, choose only three or four of the timely submissions from the design team to post, delegate, delegate, delegate!). If not, screw it! We'll still love your work and follow you wherever you publish! : - )
P.S. Love your mom's comment!!

mimisimon said...

In the future I will take time to post a comment on the blogs that I like. Don't we always think that someone else is doing it! I do love Sketch Support and Scrapbook Generation. I will continue using your sketches and being inspired by you.

Judi said...

Allison,
I recently discovered scrapbook generation, your blog and sketch support -- it was like finding a treasure chest!! I admire all your work. I'm glad you are taking care of yourself and I want to thank you for keeping the sketch support site up and running (I know I will be referencing it often). Thanks for opening my eyes to the importance of giving people (even people you don't know on a blog) feedback (only makes good sense).
Thanks again! Judi

laura said...

I'm also one that would "read and run". I'm sorry that I did not stop to comment more. I love sketch support and scrapbook generations and am delighted that you are offering kits online through your store. I have several of your books and use them every time I sketch, I just miss having actual layouts to jump start my creativity. You are an inspiration daily. Thank you for all you have done for me personally in my scrapbooking.

Pokey Puppy said...

Allison, thank you so much for sharing your feelings. That took courage. You have to be true to yourself - easier said than done sometimes especially when dealing with others who may not be as conscientious. It always amazed me that you posted each day. I kept wondering how you juggled it all. Now you've told us it cost you dearly. I am truly sorry for that. I am also sorry that I faithfully checked your blog each day (I checked twice on Sundays to see what was coming the next week) and I hardly ever commented. I had no idea how that made you feel and that it showed a real lack of appreciation on my part. Your blog has meant so much to me and I'm sorry I didn't let you know.

It seems that once again you have something to share that has helped me to grow. Usually it's as a crafter, cardmaker or scrapbooker. This time it's as a person. Thank you.

I wish there was something I could say that could help heal the wounds you've been carrying and give you back some of the joy you started with. There are many of us who care about you - not just as a fellow crafter but as a kind friend.

Anonymous said...

Oh, Allison, I echo all of the sentiments expressed above. You are such a fantastic artist and teacher! I completely understand where you're coming from (except my 50# weight gain is due to the boss I inherited 4 years ago through an acquisition of companies).

I was lucky enough to get a spot for the October 19-21 Branson retreat. I am really looking forward to meeting all of you. I hope that you will be there.

Take care of yourself first and foremost!

{{[hugs}}}
Shara Jones

dawn said...

Allison,
I'm so sorry to read all this, totally crying over this and only read some of the comments.

Dinner is ready so I will come back.

PLEASE PLEASE KNOW THAT I LOVE YOU AND YOUR INSPIRATIONS MAKE MY DAY AND REMEMBER THEY DID BEFORE I KNEW THEY WERE YOU!! IT WILL BE 3 YEARS THIS SUMMER SINCE I'VE FOUND YOUR BLOG, I STILL REMEMBER HOW EXCITED I WAS AND TOLD MY HUBBY. YOUR SWEET BOYS HAVE GROWN UP SO MUCH AND I'M SOOOOO VERY PROUD OF ALL YOU'VE DONE AND DONE FOR US. I WAS THE FIRST ONE ON BOARD FOR THIS SKETCH SUPPORT BLOG, I WANTED TO SEE MORE MORE MORE SKETCHES.

DANG MY FAMILY IS CALLING ME, WILL COME BACK SOON AS I CAN.
BIG HUGS AND PRAYERS COMING YOUR WAY.

Jen said...

Oh, Allison, I feel so badly. I was a regular visitor to your site and I LOVE LOVE LOVE your sketches and use them ALL the time. I realize now it was thoughtless of me never to make a comment. I have learned a valuable lesson here and I apologize that it was at your expense. I am so happy to hear you will continue to leave the sketches up. I will do my best to leave comments on all sites I visit and benefit from. Take care of yourself. Miss you.

winjes said...

OMG Allison... I'm so sorry that you have been carrying all of this weight on your shoulders. I hate to admit that I'm also ones of those that didn't comment, but LOVE, LOVE, LOVE all you and your team shared. Your site brought the happy back to my scrapbooking and I am so grateful for that. Your creativity and wonderful vision is missed, but I'm thrilled that you are taking time for YOU and hope that you find your happy again too.

Allison Davis said...

Wow! These comments are amazing and I am so glad to hear that so many of you enjoyed Sketch Support that much. I wish things could have been different!

Jennifer, I promise you the commenting wasn't a "self gratification" thing at all. It was a I'm putting all this work into something and thinking that nobody is enjoying it thing. How would I know if it was bettering my brand if I don't get any feedback? I watched the comments dwindle down from the beginning to the end and logically could only pull together that the interest was dwindling down with them. We used to get a lot of comments! To me it was a sign that I wasn't bettering my brand/company by continuing on. :)

I don't know why I felt the need to respond to that because really it doesn't matter. The main reason Sketch Support is ending is that I was very unhappy with managing a group of people. I am just not cut out for that kind of leadership role. I wish I was and that Sketch Support could continue on. I so much enjoy making sketches and making layouts and I will never stop doing either of those. :)

Paula in Ontario, Canada said...

Oh my goodness, do not let a website make you sick! I know, I was guilty of not posting comments over the past few months. I tried about three times to upload a layout (and eventually gave up) and I allowed that to frustrate me. After that I guess I felt a little unworthy of posting anything. I still lurked about, but stopped commenting after that. Silly me, right? I respect your decision however you want to proceed.. but I do thank you for leaving up the sketches for us to continue to use. You and your team have inspired me and I thank you for that.

Anonymous said...

I read almost the same thing on another blog {Ruffles and Stuff} and one thing that came up in the comments was that as the blog got bigger and better people felt that their commments were insignificant. "Why would such a succesful blogger read my little comment?" I think, in this big wide world web, we forget that there is a single individual behind the screen, and she needs comments!!! One thing that kept me from commenting was that in the beginning I couldn't comment annon. And I never noticed the change over. I'm so thankful that you are keeping the blog up and I hope you continue to make sketches at your own pace! :) I also hope that you can recover quickly and find more peace in the other areas of your life! Thank you for the example you set in this post.

Laurel Geisbush said...

Hi Allison, thank you for sharing your inner thoughts. I love your sketches and layouts and am glad you'll be continuing them on. You've gotta do what makes YOU happy. So glad you are on this path. I am sorry for all the painful parts. Big hug.

Fiona said...

It takes a lot of strength and courage to share what you did and good for you for finally listening to that inner voice telling you something wasn't working for you anymore. You have immense talent and I'm sorry this experience of trying to share it with others left you with such a bad experience. I visited daily and LOVED all your sketches - they are solely responsible for me doing a full year and a half of "catching up" while I was on my last mat leave, and finally ENJOYING scrapbooking again without stressing about layouts and what to do with all the cute papers I was collecting! Your sketches and amazing layouts also pushed me to try new techniques and be more "creative" all while scraplifting to my hearts delight! Thank you. Good luck and enjoy the new found free time.

PS: sorry to hear of your grandpa's stroke and hope his recovery is going well - I'm an OT working with seniors and know the road to recovery can be long and tough - for the entire family.

Pat said...

Allison I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the words you have written! As a former owner of a scrapbooking website, that I closed down because I was feeling the same emotions that you were & just couldn't tell people how I felt. Thank you for putting it out there. I am sending big hugs out to you & it does get better with time.

Chris said...

Thank you so much for sharing all your amazing creativity with the world. I hope you all the health and happiness in your everyday life.

debbie susee said...

So very sorry!!

Jac said...

Thanks for sharing all that with us Allison. I agree with both snapdragon and scrap that. I too have often looked at sketch support's work and enjoyed looking and getting more inspiration. I suppose the reason I haven't commented is because of wanting to say more than just thanks... actually letting you know the so what ?? of reading your blog. I am glad you are taking time to heal from the other issues and that you have a family that appreciate you. I look forward to more posts on this blog - and more comments from me!!

Lisa P said...

Thank you for your honesty. It has to be hard to get on here and bare your soul and the hurts you felt. I found your site and this blog shortly after you started it. I wish now I had commented more and shown my appreciation. I love getting inspiration from the scrapbooking world and try to leave comments at different stops along the way but need to be better at it. It is good to see the other side and see that comments do matter to people. I do want you to know that I sent many friends your way and told them how much I loved your style as well as your sketches. Too little too late as telling you that sooner may have encouraged you when you needed it. Thanks for the time you put in and it is totally understandable that you need to heal and put your family first now. I hope to continue following you here and seeing your beautiful family through your posts on your blog. You are a very talented and amazing scrapbooker, a fun and loving mother and I wish you well in your daily life.

connie said...

Allison I feel the same as the others and don't need to repeat everything. Just wanted you to know that I appreciated all your and your teams hard work. I loved visiting the site but I WAS ONE OF THE ONES THAT DID NOT always leave comments. Please take care of yourself! Thanks for leaving the site up and available for us to still visit. I will still follow your blog and Scrapbook Generation.

Lisa Goodwin said...

I LOVE YOUR SKETCHES!!!!! thank you for designing these. I have ordered the books and have pimped them to my scrapping friends. Im a bit technology challenged and often don't leave comments....but thanks for reminding me. You have the BEST sketches out there....much appreciated in CA!

Kim M said...

Sorry that it seemed to be such a disappointing experience for you. I really enjoyed sketch support and everything the site had to offer.

I would not read too much into the lack of comments. I look at about 80 blogs every day, I read every blog post all the way through, it is just not humanly possible to comment every day on every blog that I read. I will comment from time to time but most of the time, after reading everything I don't have the time to comment, especially now that blogs have made it so much harder by having to copy the words to prove we are real people.

Again, sorry, it did not turn out as expected. You have such talent to offer, I hope you continue to do sketches.

Amy said...

Oh your post makes me so sad for so many reason. Mostly because you internalized everything and in turn gained weight and became so unhappy. Just to bring all of us absolutely amazing sketches. I am so sad to hear your probably not but I totally understand where you are coming from and don't blame you for feeling that way. It really is so hard to "be the bad guy" I got a bit of an eye opener from your post as I internalize and have been gaining weight for years and years. I am trying to put myself first and it is hard to do.

I wish you all the best and if you ever do decide to come back you will be welcomed with open arms. You do amazing work. Looking forward to hearing about your healthy progress.

Susan said...

I've been gone from the scrapbooking hobby for a long time and I'm now just returning. First place I looked, your blog! You give me so much inspiration with your sketches. And now I read about how you are feeling and I'm getting more inspiration. I am very much like you. And trying so hard to change that. I totally get what you are saying and doing. I support you 1000%.

In regards to the comment thing, I too get kind of bummed that I don't get many comments on my blog. I am contemplating about stopping blogging altogether. BUT, I think now that Pinterest is the rage, many people Pin rather than comment. Recently I've seen blogs with very large followings not get much comments either unless they do a giveaway. So I don't think it's only yours. :)

I say do what makes you feel good. And please know that you have inspired at least one person out there. xo

Mendi said...

I discovered the Sketch Support site late in the game (sadly after you stepped away for your break), but I can see you have a real talent in the sketch department and I am sad that I missed being there through it all. I hope you feel better and pick it up again sometime on your own terms. I know what it's like to be burnt out on something though so take forever if you need too. Hugs! :)

Michele said...

Wow Allison, I really do understand why you needed to vent ... and why you decided to discontinue with Sketch Support. Thanks so much for letting me be part of the team ... it was such an honour to be associated with you and your CT.

I too have had to re-assess my life, and I've been dealing with a "health challenge" myself. But I'm learning to live with it ... for now, at least until I know for sure ... I think that I'll even start blogging again ... very soon.

Take care ... and thank you again!

Michele Edwards

IlianaM said...

I am so sorry! I visit Sketch Support all the time and surf for starting points. I hope eventually you will bring it back. Thank you so much for your candid post on what happened. I do love your sketches and own almost all the books. It is a go to in my crafting. As for comments, I always surf through the archives and always thought that it was too late to comment on an old post. I love, love, love you. As for it taking too much time, delegate girlfriend. Teach me, I will help. I will deal with it for you.

Anonymous said...

Allison, I have loved your work since you first had layouts published in Creating Keepsakes magazine. I always find inspiration in your layouts. Hang in there and know that there are many people who are happy that you are healing you. And if you ever decide to return to a modified version of an online sketch site, I will be an enthusiastic reader! God bless you and your family.

Charlene said...

Allison, thank you for posting this. You are extremely talented and very kind. I am sorry/sad to hear why you need to step away. I took your sketch support class and was amazed you took the time to comment on every layout posted. That to me said alot about your character. I too visited your sketch site regularly but failed to comment. I mistakenly thought my "looks great" comment would not matter and I really, hate, the I'm not a robot par of posting a comment. I even mistakenly assumed you didn't even look at the comments. I assumed someone with your talent didn't need an atta girl, for that I apologize, everyone needs to be told they are doing a great job. Allison, you are doing a fantastic job! Take some time, regroup and enjoy your boys!!!!

Penny Peck said...

So sorry to read about your pain. I had no idea but thank you for being bold and sharing the truth so I will be more sensitive and willing to openly thank others for sharing their talent. You are not only very talented in many many ways, but also very nice. This world needs more people like you. I have gleaned lots of good ideas from you not only from your projects, but also from what you do with your family. One thing that you used to do that I loved was when you had a scrapbook page example at the store with the supplies next to it. But get rest. And keep enjoying that neat family of yours! Thanks for all the haring that you do do! Anytime I need guidance from you, you have always stopped what you were doing to help me. That means alot.

SRE said...

Thank you for not just the site, but for your honesty! I have been always been a frequest visitor to the site (and own all the Scrapbook Generation books). This has always been my go-to blog for scrapbooking ideas! The sketches and layouts have ALWAYS been amazing and inspiring. However, I have never posted. And I never thought about posting until I read this entry. I am a shy gal - have been on Facebook for years, but I don't post there either! But I never thought of the other side and how much comments would mean to the blog owners. So I apologize and want you to know that I will take what you wrote, and use that on any other blogs. (Too late for sketch support, but I wanted you to know what you wrote made a difference in me seeing things differently.) I hope Sketch Support returns some day - but I hope more so that you take care of yourself and heal. Thanks so much for all you have shared with us! ~Suzanne

Michelle McClure said...

I thought you were a great DT leader, don't knock yourself down. I've been under the other side of the coin (quick to confront) and it was miserable. I really appreciated your site and the weekly free sketches as I felt there was nothing else like it out there that didn't require a subscription. As for not always commenting, it felt redundant and non-insightful to say the same thing - love your sketch, cool projects DT! Or, I didn't want to point out the one project I liked the best from that day and make the others feel bad. You are totally appreciated and loved in the scrappy blog world. Don't measure your brand or success level by comments. It might be like dating, where it just got comfortable and we stopped saying the things you wanted to hear. So sorry for that. Pleast take care of yourself, and please come back in a modified form that is manageable for your health and welfare.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry that Sketch Support caused you so much grief. I loved the blog and loved your sketched. Of course, like many I am guilty of not commenting. I hope things get better for you! All the best.

scrappymo! said...

Forgot to say that i joined your blog today. i really appreciate that you left the sketches up for people to download. That was very kind.

I am a commentor...maybe it is because i am a Chatty Cathy type of personality.

I don't usually read and run...so you may get sick of my comments!!! LOL

gayla wolf said...

I have appreciated and enjoyed all of your creative endeavors. My wish for you is a happy family and good health because without those things everything else is unimportant!

csewy-csescrap13 said...

I know that I am late in saying this but I am so sorry for all of the stress that you went through with the lack of comments on Sketch Support and members of your DT. I love your blog and the SS blog and know that I didn't comment often, sorry for this! After starting a scrapping blog myself, I do understand people not commenting....and, my blog is something minor compared to the time that you took with yours! BTW, I love your style and use your ideas often! Thanks for the inspiration! (((((Hugs))))) hope you are feeling better!

Julie said...

Allison, I am so sorry for all you have gone through. I am guilty...i do not comment on blogs that I read...and I'm sorry. I should...and from now on I will. Please take care of yourself...that is what is most important. You have been a very important part of the scrapbooking world over the last few years...and I love you! Take care!

Janette Carter-Kincaid said...

I saw your post and read your email explaining the reasons for the break a few weeks ago but I didn't and still don't know what to say.
As a DT member I wish you would have told us how difficult it was for you. Maybe we could have helped or made it easier somehow. I feel bad and responsible for how it affected you. I’m so so so sorry.
You were a terrific leader and I felt you managed us well. I loved the personal emails and the lovely notes added to the packages we got in the mail. But I don't know what happened behind the scenes.
I'm really really sad that SS is over. I miss it and I miss you.
I haven't done much scrapping since the break. I don't know if it's a funk or if the structure of the deadline was what pushed me to finish pages.
It doesn't really matter.
I just wanted to publicly say thank you for allowing me to be part of the Creative Team at SS. It is/was my very first team, thanks for allowing me to be a part of it.

~J

Stacy Haworth said...

HUGS

We will be sad to see you go.
my whole group of scrappers uses your sketch books.
I plan to go home and buy all the ones I don't have to make sure that I can get them! LOL

We wish you the very best in your future endeavors and the best in life!

May you receive many blessings!

gingerella said...

Allison,
I didn't read the other comments, so I don't know if I am repeating what others have said. I just wanted to say how much I enjoy your work, your creativity and the inspiration you provide to me. I am one of those who just read the blog without commenting very often and I apologize. I have every sketch from Sketch Support, printed, sorted and in a notebook. (I have 8 of your books also.) I use your sketches in almost every layout I do. (I started in the classes at the store and when I moved back to Texas, I have been in the Super Sketch club since the beginning.) You taught me to sew on layouts, layer shapes to make embellishments, group my pictures together in a pleasing way (instead of lost islands on a white background), how to get the most from my patterned paper - and many other lessons about this hobby we love so much.

I hope your "sabbatical" gives you the time you need to heal, enjoy your family and hopefully know how much of an inspiration you are to many of us.

Thanks for all you have taught me about scrapbooking.
Ginger Griffith

Cindy said...

Guess my post telling how often I scrap and look online, I just seen this.
Loved your sketches and inspiration when I did look.
Thanks for sharing and thanks for not doing as many giveaways LOL I for one never like them on a blog!!!
Hope you still put out books and have your memberships.
Enjoy having a less stress free life!!!

The Marshalls said...

Alison,
I only recently discovered your sketch site and Scrapbook Generations monthly kits. I have to say, that I love them both! I'm sorry to have missed the sketch support site while it was up and running. I can understand your frustration and reasons for taking a break from it. It's hard not to focus on the negatives instead of the positives that your site generated. There are lots of women out there that are unknown but who would love a chance to contribute to a sketch site. So often the design teams are just popular artists who go from site to site. They get egos the size of a blimp and end up treating site owners like crap. Perhaps if you decide to start your site up again, you'll consider scrapbookers who are new to design teams.
In the meantime, take care of yourself and enjoy every day.

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