For eight awesome months, I ran the Star Wars website at About.com. I’m proud of the work I did there; I think it’s some of the best I’ve ever done. A few months ago, I was told that About would no longer be pursuing Star Wars as a topic site, due to some heavy restructuring of its business model.
That’s entirely their right, and I completely respect it. Jobs come and go for writers; it’s the nature of the business.
I don’t entirely understand their decision; Star Wars has never been a hotter topic than it is right now, and it’s only getting bigger by the day. Rogue One, Episode VIII, Rebels, novels, comics, video games… Disney is doing Star Wars right, and now is the best possible time to cover it.
But things happen and we move on.
The thing is: I’m not finished talking about Star Wars. And funny enough, people are still subscribing to my Star Wars social media feeds even though I haven’t written anything on the subject in months! I had all kinds of ideas cooking, materials to review, features to share, and insights to offer. And there are people out there who still seem to want to hear what I have to say.
So I’m going to keep going.
But as long as this is my own thing, why limit it to Star Wars? I’m passionate about lots of geeky stuff, like superheroes, Doctor Who, Game of Thrones, Tolkien, Harry Potter, video games, comic books, LEGO, movie soundtracks, board games… Basically, if it promotes great storytelling and creativity, I’m in.
I’ve been in this business for more than 20 years, and I still receive communications and review materials from a variety of sources. Many of those materials are quite brilliant, and I’m dying to share them with you.
But there’s another reason I’m doing this.
People love the Internet because it’s an endless well of content, and it’s content that’s posted insanely fast. Before the Internet, the fastest turnaround time in media was newspapers, which published the next day, i.e., the day after something newsworthy happened. The Internet changed that; we’ve been trained to now expect our content to be fed to us with the utmost immediacy. Major media companies employ staffs of dozens or hundreds to catch the latest minutiae and write about it as fast as humanly possible. Breaking news alerts are fed to our phones via notifications. Twitter gives us a steady stream of instantaneous, knee-jerk reactions and snarky commentary.
I believe that in pursuit of all that speed, we’ve lost something valuable. Anyone can regurgitate a press release or turn around a quick news piece summing up known facts, or say something in less than 140 words. What’s missing is voice. Authority. Intelligence. Quality has taken a backseat to the almighty throne of urgency.
This is something that’s been bugging me for a while, and a recent viral video crystallized my feelings on the matter. Maybe I can do my part to reclaim some of what we’ve lost.
I’m not reinventing the wheel, I’m just looking for an outlet. And maybe I can add a little thoughtfulness and depth to the conversation. I might even present a few things you won’t see anywhere else. The usual stuff — structured, scored product reviews, for example — has been done to death. Who needs more of that?
This is going to be different. Experimental. Unexpected. Fun.
I’m not setting a publishing schedule. Life is too crazy for that. I’ll post something when I have something to post. Follow along on social media to find out when something new is up. (If you already follow “All About Star Wars” on Facebook, Twitter, and elsewhere, you’re good to go.)
Welcome to Assorted Geekery — where quality is baked right in.