THE STORY OF ZEE'S CAFE CAFE
THAT'S A CAT WITH A VERY LONG TAIL
I heard the expression - that's a cat with a very long tail - decades ago. It stayed in my mind. It fits here. The story of how Zee's Cafe Cafe came to be - and now it came to be put aside for a very long time - goes back at least to 1999, and even to 1994.
1994. That's when I started, unexpectedly, writing what I called "word pieces" - words meant to go with music. I started waking up with words in my head. I would scribble them down, follow the words. 19 pieces the first month. I remember counting at the end of the month. I typed them up.
I kept on writing more.
Soon there were dozens, then hundreds of pieces.
Over time, the flow has been stronger and less strong, but has never left.
1999. I've been writing word pieces for 5 years. The pieces naturally fit one after another to tell a story. But where to tell the story? I get the idea for a TV show, Zee's Cafe Cafe.
The cafe. One of those old cafes, with old wooden tables and old wooden chairs. A comfortable place. Low lighting. Regulars who come week after week.
The owner of the cafe is Zee, an alter ego. She tells - through the word pieces - bits of her story, week after week. There's room for other performers as well. And for the regulars.
A couple of years later, a friend tells me about a new emerging possibility - something online. There is a brand new grant available for such projects. I've never gotten a grant, but my friend suggests I try for one, so I d . I know almost nothing about making a webpage or using Photoshop, but I spend a couple of months learning, and creating my first vision of Zee's Cafe Cafe. In a few months I hear back that the project is not well enough developed. By the second year, I've learned ever so much more. What I send is very developed. I hear back that I wasn't considered the right person for the project. I don't try again.
2006. Something else happens. I create my first website.
I learn how to use keywords. I learn who is called SEO, meaning getting the search engines to take notice.
Nothing is easy, but I have such a strong urge to get my word pieces out into the world. And I do get them out into the world. Within about 3 years, I have quite an audience. Up to 60,000 page views a month. That's 750,000 a year. Three-quarters of a million. Plus I have a huge sendout list. This was in the Wild West days of the internet. No double opt-ins.
I still keep wanting an online Cafe. So a few years later I develop one as part of my site. This version of Zee's Cafe Cafe is still online. But then I run out of energy for the project. I don't go further.
Up til 2012 I keep posting quite a number of individual pieces, personal pieces for the most part.
But a huge change is happening in my life. Since 2006 I've been noticing both the way good thinking is becoming taboo and the way Islam is protected from objective evaluation - instead we are to believe, believe, believe. For instance, we are to believe it's a religion of peace, no matter what the evidence.
My interest shifts. In 2012 I launch a new site, the World Truth Summit. I do several interview series on people daring to look into Islam.
More than a decade passes. I feel horribly stuck.
In 2021, I'm working with a coach. She loves the idea of Zee's Cafe Cafe. I dust off the project. I have an audience - as I've had an audience of varying sizes since 2006. At that time the audience is mainly for idea pieces but also for the occasional creative piece I send out.
When I let people know about a live Cafe, only about 10 people came the first week, for the launch.
Almost nobody shows up the second week. I'm discouraged. I don't know how to get the project to reach an audience.
So I put the Cafe aside again for a while. I hold a few events, but then nothing since over half a year ago.
Actually, it's far from nothing. There's been almost nothing with the Cafe. But there has been lots else, especially a Truth Summit last month - interviews with 21 amazing Truth Tellers. Then last year I was barely starting on Substack. Now I've published more than a hundred posts. I feel much more connected to the readers.
So now, a new launch. With a stronger base. We will see.
- MORE COMING SOON -
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WHAT IS ZEE'S CAFE CAFE?
ZEE'S CAFE CAFE,
WITH YOUR M.C. ELSA -
A.K.A. ZEE -
SO NOW . . .
- ELSA at ZEE'S CAFE CAFE -
SPOKEN WORD, POETRY,
WORDS AND MUSIC,
IDEAS AND GOOD THINKING,
IMAGES AND MORE!!!
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