About the domain.
ZerudaORG is my collective domain which houses all sites owned by me. Building websites is a ton of fun and a great way for me to express myself about the things I am passionate about. Unfortunately, I love a lot of things which has resulted in the making of a lot of sites. That's okay though, because I love them all. Most of my sites are shrines dedicated to some of my favorite characters, but I run other sites too, such as directories, cliques, and fanlistings. I don't think I'll ever be able to quit fanlistings. I'm a huge Nintendo fan, and if you haven't noticed by now all but two my video game shrine subjects can be found on a Nintendo console. I swear that wasn't on purpose. I didn't even notice it until a friend pointed it out to me. I'm also a huge fan of female characters, although I haven't quite figured out what it is that draws me to them. I will figure this out one day. Maybe. It could also be a secret to everyone.
ZerudaORG made its internet debut on May 18, 2006 and is the first and only domain owned by me. I briefly owned himeru.org, which I had intended to have replace zeruda.org, but I chose not to, instead using it for a fanlisting collective. I'm glad I listened to my gut because I think I would have regretted it otherwise. The name was purchased from GoDaddy on May 16, 2006, and is hosted by them as well.
The girl who does things.
Who am I you ask? My name is Crystal and I am the one who runs this domain. In case you're wondering that is my real name. Back when I started websites I didn't know about aliases and even after I did I chose to stick with it. I'm pretty awful when it comes to talking about myself. I never know what to say. Some things you should probably know about me are my birthday is March 14, 1986, green is my favorite color, I love to play video games, and I suffer from social anxiety disorder and a learning disability which affects my processing speed and working memory. This does make me a little slow, which has lead some people to think me stupid, but that is far from the truth. I just work differently than most. I hail from a small town, where everything is within walking distance, located in Alberta Canada which is home to some of the strangest weather you might see. And no, we are not experiencing Global Warming; it is called a "Chinook". It's a pretty neat weather phenomenon that only happens in three locations in the world.
As I've mentioned before I love video games. Playing video games is probably my favorite hobby. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Fire Emblem: Awakening, Rune Factory 4, and World of Warcraft I'd consider dearest to my heart. Other video games I love include Animal Crossing, Final Fantasy XIV, Fire Emblem, Fire Emblem Fates, Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, Hyrule Warriors Legends, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire, Pokémon Black/White, Stella Glow, Tales of the Abyss, and The World Ends With You. I also enjoy watching some shows on TV. Some of my favorites are Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Castle, Leverage, Once Upon a Time, Quantum Leap, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. I'm also a sucker for Disney movies, especially some of the older ones such as Aladdin and The Little Mermaid. I am quite fond of Frozen too. What can I say? I love the sister dynamic of the movie. ♥ Although I am not into anime or manga like I used to be I will forever love Fruits Basket and Bleach.
The road to here.
It has been a long journey getting to this point, but here we are. Remembering some of my early days on the web is embarrassing to think about. I was such a noob back then, and I don't mean the barely knowing any html kind of noob. Guh, I don't even want to think about it! Despite these grievances everything I've experienced have all been the building blocks to get me to where I am today, and I couldn't be more grateful. This whole crazy thing began in 2002 during a computers class in my junior high years where we were required to make our own webpage for the school website. Mine sucked, obviously, as I had zero idea what I was doing, but it sparked an interest, and I wanted to learn more. After some incentive from a friend who also wanted to mess with it I got myself started. Kinda funny I was the only one who kept going with it.
My very first website opened in December 2002 and was hosted on Geocities. The site was a mesh of various fandoms, including Harvest Moon, The Legend of Zelda, and Cardcaptors, and was named after a fairy I had created for a Legend of Zelda fanfic I wrote in school which involved all my friends. Honestly, it was embarrassing and made no sense at all (the website I mean, the fanfic wasn't so bad...I think). I closed the site a couple weeks later, opening a Cardcaptors fansite in January 2003. That site did pretty well and lasted several months. I opened up a Legend of Zelda fansite in August 2003, which I kept for a good couple of years, but later closed down due to reasons I'd rather not discuss. In 2004 I discovered fanlistings and opened a Fire Emblem fansite somewhere in there. I don't remember much of that part though. In May 2006 I got ZerudaORG where it still lives on the internet today, and hopefully will for a good long while yet.
What's in a name?
For anyone who may not yet be familiar, the name "Zeruda" comes from the Japanese pronunciation of the name "Zelda", which many may know as the princess of the Legend of Zelda series. This series means a lot to me and Zelda is one of my most beloved favorite characters. Over time the name has since developed a deeper meaning for me and I can't help but think of it as sort of a second name for myself. If you were to call me "Zeruda" chances are I'd respond to it. I adore the name to bits and can't really see myself going with anything else in either the near or distant future. I'll admit I've tried thinking of alternatives, and while I have liked some of them none have been able to connect with me on a personal level like Zeruda has.
It is quite funny though because the name was actually a spur of the moment type deal at the time I chose it. I had originally planned to go with rakushinu.org for my first domain, but for some reason I ended up checking to see if zeruda.org was available. When I noticed it was I knew I had to use it. I never expected how much importance the name would soon have to me. In March 2007 I began playing World of Warcraft and decided I'd name my first character Zeruda, mostly just because I suck at names and couldn't think of anything else. The growth I went through with her felt much the same as my growth with websites and my domain. I began with embarrassing experiences I can't talk about, and instead of letting those get to me and quitting I kept moving forward and allowed myself to learn and improve.
As for the network name, I don't know why I went with it or how I how I decided upon it. The name comes from a Retribution Paladin ability in World of Warcraft, which is called Divine Storm. The "Organization" part is just because my domain is a .org. I guess because it sounds cool? I don't even know anymore.
About the layout.
Currently we are on version 31 of the domain which features several important characters in the video game Final Fantasy XIV (I'm too lazy to name them all, plus some of their names are complicated to spell). I've thrown around the idea of making a FFXIV layout for some time, even making several different layouts using my characters, but it always seemed to feel awkward so I'd never use them. I think because it felt like they had to be wearing "current" gear, and if they weren't the images didn't reflect my characters or something weird like that. It's something dumb, I know that much. One day I was looking through images I had saved on my computer and I somehow ended up finding myself drawn to using this image for a layout. I'll admit I was unsure on the layout to start, but after messing around with it, and rewriting all the pages to fit with the new layout, I found it growing on me. Now I'm in love with it. Crazy how that happens, isn't it?
The layout was made by me using Adobe Photoshop 7.0 and then coded by hand using Notepad. The image used in the layout was found at Final Fantasy Wiki and patterns used were found at Subtle Patterns. Fonts used are called Imprint MT Shadow and Footlight MT Light. A huge shoutout to Megan who helped out with giving me a lot of feedback while I worked on this revamp. Sometimes I have trouble making up my mind on certain things I come up with and having a second opinion always helps me out immensely. Thank you so much! Previous layouts used may be found at my layout archive.