Thanks for all the fish…

Maybe…

Hello everyone. Update time.

This is just a post to let you know that the blog will be entering hibernation until at least next year. As you may or may not have noticed, the output from me has reduced significantly for several reasons. I have felt the need to focus my attentions elsewhere for quite some time, but have also worried that ignoring the blog would be detrimental for me and others. Since the beginning of 2012, when I started this blog, I have taken great pleasure in writing what I hope are entertaining snippets of cinematic triviality, but due to other demands, brought on by my own personal nagging creative desires, not to mention the very real need to prove to others what I have always believed, I have to admit that my head has been turned.

Now, 730+ posts, a million words, five million views and nearly 1000 movie reviews later, I have to remind myself of the reasons for writing the blog. The original purpose was one of challenge (those of you that were with me from the beginning will remember me trying to fill an imaginary stadium with my visitors, the goal to reach 100,000, enough to fill Wembley Stadium. We achieved that rather quicker than I had anticipated). I had been writing movie related nonsense for a good five years before I even started on here, on both websites of my own and on those belonging to others, yet nothing had prevailed. I have actually been writing now for nearly thirty years all told. The partner I have since separated from rightly accused me of not being able to stick at anything creative and the blog was a way of challenging that criticism. Even if I had to admit her candour was hurtful, it was nonetheless accurate. I have proved to myself, if not to her maybe (as I am sure she is not the slightest bit interested, or even around to see it), that I can indeed stick at something for longer than five minutes. Ironically, my focused enthusiasm for proving her wrong was partly responsible, I feel, for the fact that two have now become one. If you want me to do something, the best way to get me to do it, is to tell me that I can’t. Just be careful what you wish for, Missy. Strangely, even after all that has happened personally, I maybe comically still need to prove myself to her, even if she doesn’t know it, and cares even less. Perhaps I just want to put two fingers up to her in a ‘told you so’ fashion.

The past four years have been nothing but a pleasure. I have been afforded the opportunity to write for many different websites, as well as my own output and meet some very interesting people in the course of my pursuit of honest, unbiased, simple film criticism. I have upset some people that really shouldn’t care what I think and have been praised by those I never expected to read my opinions about their work in pretty much equal measure, and have been repeatedly grateful for the very nice things most people have to say on the subject of my writing. It is especially nice to receive kind words from screenwriters and authors whom I respect the most in this industry and I have yet been made to feel anything but respected by every person I have professionally come into contact with in the course of my efforts to make my little voice heard in what is sometimes a barrage of white noise.

Despite actually making money from doing something I love, this rather selfish pursuit will never make ends meet. Not too many of us can say that their opinion alone in this industry is actually profitable and fewer still can afford not to do something else in addition. This is not the issue at hand, however. I want to draw a firm line under the blog (with the condition that I may well return, yet making no promises) so as to commit to not doing something any more. This may seem like an odd statement to make, but my head tells me its the right thing to do. I guess it’s like stopping smoking, but not telling anyone you have. You can start again, and no-one would know that you’ve failed. Simply not writing the blog is not what I would qualify as a success in this regard, unless there was a legitimate reason, such is the importance I place on my readership and the very real sense of privilege I feel at having people choose to come and spend their very valuable spare time inside my mental innards. The reasons for stopping are simple and the reasons for telling you are equally so.

My first play is currently in its second re-write and I am grateful to those that have contributed a wealth of good intentions and suggestions on how to make my first foray into what I feel I was born to do a reality. Still some way from being the finished article, even in my own opinion, I am confident that 2016 will see these efforts come to fruition. In addition to this, a collection of short stories is planned for the end of next year, with work already underway and expected to hit full pelt in less than a month. An autobiography that I am about to start for the benefit of my future generations (I mean, who else would really care?) is also on the cards. My creative juices are as active as they have ever been, I am just directing them elsewhere. I thought it only right to let you know why you won’t be seeing quite so much (or any) of me for the forseeable future.

In summary, I will always be a movie-guy. I just can’t help it. I have to stop writing about it now as time waits for no man and I have now reached an age that I told myself in my youth that I would be able to sit down and write something worthy. In order to achieve this, I need to focus on my nagging goals.

I am reminded of Stephen King once saying that writers have a kind of mesh in their brains that filters out the stuff that goes through their mind that they can’t use, but feel compelled to write down the stuff that gets stuck, too chunky for the brain filter. The only way to get rid of it, is to put pen to paper in a kind of cathartic self-therapy. My filter is not getting the chance to get unclogged, as my commitment to the blog alters my focus. As such, it has to stop.

Thanks for your support up until this point. Feel free to send me a tweet should you have a mind to.

Best wishes as always

Steve

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