This is largely the text of a comment I put on the accursed Facebook. I have slapped rouge and lipstick on the relevant parts of it and I am posting it here to if anyone is really bothered.
I often feel like wiping Elitistreview off the web. Apart from the generosity of a very, very small handful of people, writing it is a thankless task.
I think I generally do a passable job of it, sometimes a very good job. However, when one is madder than a jam jar filled with scorpions, it is bloody hard to write 1,000-odd words coherently, hopefully conveying useful information and attempting to spice up novel, gratuitously biological jokes.
Moreover, due to my fibromyalgia I feel completely shattered and in severe pain for several days after I’ve written an article. This is really traumatic.
Most of the feedback I get is in the form of emails asking why I did not report on X, have I tasted X and what did I think of it and can I tell this person where they can buy a bottle of X (usually with a laughably stingy maximum price the correspondent is willing to pay). Emails of this type are not terribly rewarding to receive.
I often give some fabulous tips on great wines to buy – I know people buy cases of them with big grins slapped across their faces. I am usually only able to afford the one bottle I report upon.
I try to take gratification from the fact that I manage to write anything at all. However, when the immediate effect of writing an article is days of feeling utterly spent, my body charged with seething, fulminating pain and my mind charged with existential trauma it is very hard to feel I have been positively rewarded for my considerable efforts.
Moreover, the knowledge that I am going to experience such torture is not good. I know I do not enjoy wine, as I otherwise might, when I know I am going to write the bottle up – it is going to make me suffer.
It might be best to remove the site so I feel no obligation to write anything and do not suffer the punishment I experience when I do write things. It has been online since 2005, maybe it can bow out to almost inaudible applause 15 years later.
Many would mourn its passing, David. The site has been informative, educational and fun. You shouldn’t feel under any obligation or pressure to post to it. Wine is, after all, supposed to be a pleasure, not a burden. But maybe on occasion you might feel moved… one of your rants every now and then perhaps?
I haven’t decided yet, Peter, we’ll see how I feel over the next period of time? Obviously, Elitistreview has been a labour of love, but that labour is getting as unpalatable as Jeremy Corbyn. I’ll decide soon.
Well, I’d certainly miss ER greatly! Never read one review/article by you that I didn’t hugely enjoy, and I often refer back to them.
I’ll decide soon, Charles. It’s hard work and I get more decrepit as time goes on.
Davy, you’re a peach. I so look forward to your missives and your slightly askew point of view. Were I located on your part of the planet, I would voluteer to come and type for you. Have you thought of getting software that allows you to dictate to your computer? The world of wine needs your voice. No pressure, though, do what is best for you.
Office 365 and Windows 10 come with the ability to dictate, but every time I’ve tried to use it I’ve found the experience deeply unsatisfactory. I’ll have another go! Writing this has shown that dictation on Android is rubbish.
I really hope you can keep writing Davy. Yours is the only wine blog that makes me laugh. I’ve been able to locate some of the wines you’ve reviewed favorably here in the US and I’ve enjoyed every one. I look forward to every new post. I realize that in the end you have to do what is right for you but I did want you to know how much I enjoy your writing
I haven’t decided finally about this. I will take a few days to think. Elitistreview is not all totally terrible, but it hurts both physically and mentally, and I am a bit of a flake.If you would like to see Elitistreview continue do feel free to let me know. If you feel that my reasons for stopping are understandable then also let me know. I’ll be in touch soon.
Dear Davy, It is your site and the only real reason for continuing to write is if it brings you satisfaction and enjoyment. If you do decide to stop I will miss your writing very much, both in content and in style. I have bought and enjoyed many of your recommendations; I have also paid attention to the things that you have not liked and learned from this. Your (sometimes brutal) honesty and sense of humour are rare and precious things in the world of wine commentary and to be cherished.
Wishing you well at all times
We have never met, but I read your mail and I may not understand what you are going through but REALLY hope that you will continue. Ok, lets make a deal you cant quit until you tasted and write about Naude wines (every 3 months) – got about 8 wines – that gives us roughly 2 years ! Will ask Gregg to get a bottle to you as soon as possible – or how would I get wines to you ? I honestly think you have a gift and hope my wines can bring a little bit of the South African sunshine to you – thats why I make wines NOT for points but to share a piece of the place I love in a bottle. A old Greek told me once – “ a winemakers job is to take a liquid photo of a specific eco system and put that in a bottle “ hope that works for you with my wine – in Afrikaans we have a saying “ vasbyt, voorwaards en opwaards “ ( dig-in, forward and upwards ) not good with English translations – ask Gregg or any Saffer to translate better
Thank you all for your input. Most people seem to think I should continue it as long as it makes me happy. That seems reasonable to me. Elitist review does brain be happy when I write something good. When I’m soggy through an article about something I don’t really like,It is hard work. Thank you for your offer Ian, I’d really love to taste your wines, of course I cannot promise positive reviews, but since all my friends like your wine, I think I probably would.I would like to meet you one day Ian, if only to thank you for your kind offer. I still haven’t decided, but I’m leaning towards continuing writing at least until the burgundy on primeurs Have happened. I’m dictating this comment hence the numerous mistakes. If I can do the burgundy reports, and don’t feel too dreadful afterwards, I’ll take you up on your offer Ian, it really is a very kind offer. So home via answer is possibly continuing in the long run, after an experimental writing stage in January.. Thank you all again for your comments, emails and general support; thank you Ian; thank you Max. I’ll be in touch!