I can’t recall if Cean or John or figured it out first. We were high school classmates, and for one reason or another Cean I think (or maybe John) saw my name written out: Nicole Collier. Doodling or something, he noted the co in Nicole and the Co in Collier. In that instant, the nickname Coco was born.
It didn’t catch on. Well not really, anyway. People have always called me whatever suited them: Nicole, Colie, Nicolette, Lette, Nicki, Nic, and so on. Cean called me Coco and John called me NiCocoButterBeanSoup. Maybe one or two others jumped on the Cocowagon. Everyone else stuck with whichever version of Nicole they liked.
I thought coco was cute in print, so I began to write it everywhere.
Somewhere in the middle of the AOL and Geocities explosion, when everyone’s website had animated .gifs and embedded music, I taught myself basic HTML and built the first version of cocostudio. It was black with turquoise and white letters. And yes, music was embedded (Joe Sample).
Fast forward to graduate school. I wanted to try my hand at my own domain. So in November of 1999, a month before I was due to graduate, I bought cocostudio.com. It served as a portfolio site as I interviewed for teaching jobs. It was yellow then, with cheerful colors.
Over the past 14 years it has been an electronic resume, a clearinghouse for photographs and clips, a calling card for freelancing, even a journal of sorts, before blogging became a thing. Many times I’ve archived everything and started from scratch – sometimes promising and postponing relaunches for up to two years at a stretch.
I think I’d been nearing the two-year mark this time around, but here we are. Too many times I’ve let perfect be the enemy of good. And honestly, I’ve often let it be the enemy of progress. But this year is about action, vibration, movement. Building.
What’s in store for you?