In the beginning, there were four teenagers with a mission…
In the summer and fall of 1998, David P. (formerly of the RoTW Project, Shallowthorn, and other projects), Kenny C. (formerly of Salamandastron), and Josh B. (formerly of Bobbo's Den) banded together in an attempt to make a significant contribution to the ROC (Redwall Online Community). Along with Kelly H., then of Castle Alelea and now of Fernblossom, an excellent artist and cover illustrator, they decided to put what was a truly revolutionary idea into action. At that time, none of them foresaw the success that the venture would gain…they just hoped that they'd eventually have a site that a lot of people would want to come to. Dave was the design guru, Josh was the Chief Reporter, and Kenny handled editing and other various jobs. In November 1998, their work was introduced to the world as…Terrouge!
Terrouge? What does that mean?
Dave and Josh are responsible for coming up with the name Terrouge, a name that has since been pronounced many different ways by many different people. It comes from a combination of the Latin word for "earth" (terra) and the French word for "red" (rouge). Therefore, our name should roughly be translated to mean "red earth", or "land of the red." As the languages of origin of Terrouge are Romance languages, which include Latin and its derivatives, the pronunciation should also conform to those languages; thus, when you say, "Terrouge," it should sound something like "Tur-ooj." This pronunciation, however, is not the one I use, and you shouldn't feel like you have to say it that way, either.
Redwall.vr9.com - our first web address
When starting out, we were just a bunch of poor teenagers, so we went with free webhosting from Vr9.com. We stayed there until May 2002, when Vr9 went down without notice. In July of 2002, we were still a bunch of poor teenagers, but moved to a paid hosting site and registered the Terrouge.com domain name. Gone were the old days of sporadic connectivity and near-daily site problems - and good riddance.
An explosion of growth
Following the switch to the Terrouge.com domain, we saw a huge explosion of growth, under the leadership of then Editor-in-Chief Erin L. (Shortestar). By the time Shorestar stepped down as EiC in June of 2004, the e-zine had leaped from 20 visitors a day to over 1000, ensuring Terrouge’s place as one of the premiere ROC destinations.
A succession of editors
Jason Caits-Cheverst succeeded Erin as Editor-in-Chief of Terrouge. However, after a year he was forced to resign by pressing real-life issues. Rob (Rat73) stepped up to plate to fill in temporarily. That temporary editorship stretched into a year of dedicated work before Rob stepped down. Next up to bat were Ulbaz and Phillip P. (Vilu Daskar) in early 2006. They served as joint Editors-in-Chief for a brief period before Ulbaz took over full-time. In mid-2006, Jason returned and re-assumed the mantle of Editor-in-Chief. In an attempt to revitalize Terrouge's readership he began a radical redefinition of what Terrouge was.
In January 2007, Jason unveiled the new face of the Terrouge magazine, Firebird by Terrouge Productions. Instead of concentrating solely on Redwall-related issues, the new e-zine would reach beyond it's roots and cover general literature in addition to Redwall. The change was met with mixed reviews though, and hurt by some rather caustic responses to his work, Jason resigned from his staff positions. At this point Dan B. (Sawney Rath) and Zian Choy became co-Editors-in-Chief, though Dan was forced to set aside the job after several months.
Times at Terrouge have not always been hunky-dory. Many times in our history, issues have threatened to shut the whole project down indefinitely, and there were times when many of us staff members wouldn't have minded seeing Terrouge just drift into the Dark Forest of Discontinued Redwall Websites.
Tragically, in September 2003, Josh Boycott, a former Editor-in-Chief and longtime staff member and friend, passed away after his automobile rolled over twice. This is undoubtedly the worst thing that has happened to Terrouge, and one of the worst things to happen to the ROC in general. We maintain a commemorative image to help remind us of him, of his life, and of his contributions to Terrouge and the ROC.
While times have occasionally been tough, and certainly none tougher than the time of Josh's death, we've endured every challenge so far; and through enduring them, we have become a more cohesive unit, a team more ready to take on the challenges of the future.
Where do we go from here?
Today, Terrouge exists to bring together readers who want to discuss and explore literature and literature-related topics, especially the Redwall series. You should note that since our transition to general literature, the e-zine's articles cover a wide variety of works, including books that may not be appropriate for all ages.
Although Terrouge is not ending anytime soon, this document is coming to a close. We want to thank everyone that has enriched our lives with their support, with their participation on the forums, and their friendly notes of encouragement. We enjoy working on the site but our joy comes from the people that view our site.
Thank you so much!