Update: Book, Fiction into Film, Mega Man, more!

Right! So, it’s been quiet around here, I’m not dead, you know the drill. But since I haven’t updated the site in 2019 yet, I wanted to provide some information about what’s going on, tease a few features, and open something up to a vote.

First, the book.

I know, I know, I wish I could actually tell you about it. Hopefully soon. My publisher will have to do its own announcement first, and then I’ll never shut up about it, I promise.

Progress has been great. I sent them a complete draft toward the end of 2018, and they provided a lot of useful, extremely thoughtful feedback. I was happy with the draft (as far as drafts can make one happy), and they’ve unquestionably given me the tools to make it better.

Posting much of the feedback here would give away the subject, so I’ll instead just include this one general bullet instead.

That felt good to receive! I can sleep again knowing I didn’t submit a big heap of crap.

There were definitely a few things I did that they weren’t on board with, which is great to know. It’s impossible for me to experience my own work as a reader, so feedback like that is immensely helpful.

I will say that the book covers a topic I’ve discussed here before. Obviously this will cover it in much greater depth, but if you’ve been a reader of the site, I think it’s safe to say you’ll be glad when you find out what I’m covering.

All of that is to say that I’m currently working on the second complete draft of the book, which consists of a major rewrite followed by lots of and lots of editing and polishing. I owe them this draft by the end of February, and I expect to turn it in much sooner than that. Once that happens, I’ll be posting here regularly again.

Well, “regularly.”

I do have a number of things I want to cover when I have the bandwidth. For starters, it’s safe to say I’ve spent enough time with Mega Man 11 now that I can write its Fight, Megaman! entry. You’ll notice it wasn’t in my best-of-2018 list, but I don’t hate it and I know I’ll have a lot to say.

I’ve also spent a lot of time with Fallout 76, which has become less of a video game and more of a flaming dumpster tumbling down a mountain. Which is a shame, because its dire reputation is both well deserved and unfortunate. You’ll notice it wasn’t in my best-of-2018 list, but I don’t hate it and I know I’ll have a lot to say.

There’s also a whole piece I’d like to write about Prey‘s approach to ethical conundrums. You’ll notice it was in my best-of-2018 list, and I nearly discussed my (very positive) feelings about this aspect of the game there, but saying anything of substance will be impossible without major spoilers, so I’m going to confine it to its own post. In the meantime, go play Prey.

In February, I’ll be reviewing another show in its entirety, for those missing the ALF reviews. It’s a worse show than ALF, but it also didn’t last as long, so we can call it a draw. Stay tuned for more information on that.

I have my three films selected for this year’s Rule of Three, and I think it will be an interesting study. You can look forward to that series starting up, as always, on April 1.

And, finally, I want to spend time this year writing more Fiction into Film entries. I always have good intentions with this series, and it’s one of my favorite things to write, but it also takes a lot of time and energy, so when those things are at a premium, this is the first to go.

However, as your reward for being patient, I thought I’d open up the next Fiction into Film to a vote.

Below are a number of entries I’ve wanted to write for a long time. These are adaptations I know I’d have a lot to say about, and the reason I haven’t covered them yet is simply because I haven’t gotten around to it.

After this draft of the book is complete and submitted, though, I will begin work on whatever wins the popular vote. You’re welcome to vote here in the comments, on Facebook, through email, on Twitter…any way you like. Just let me know which one you’d prefer to read about, and that’s what will get my attention. I’ll announce the winner as soon as my draft is complete, so I don’t have a firm date yet. The end of this month is probably a fair guess, though, so vote now!

  • Catch-22 (1961/1970)
  • The Long Goodbye (1952/1973)
  • The Hotel New Hampshire (1981/1984)
  • Jackie Brown (1992/1997)
  • Breakfast of Champions (1973/1999)
  • Ghost World (1997/2001)
  • Fantastic Mr. Fox (1970/2009)
  • Submarine (2008/2010)

As always, thank you for your patience and for your readership. You’ll get something great out of the quiet time, I promise.

Vote!

Ho ho ho, it’s bed time

I have to admit, while I didn’t expect to take a break after this year’s Xmas Bash, I’m very glad I did. It feels good to just do…nothing.

That obviously won’t (and can’t!) last forever, but for now, I hope you’ll understand if I take the end of December off.

I won’t be completely gone. At the very least, I want to post a best-games-of-my-year list like I did for 2017. I’m still trying to decide on a format, though, since once again I’ll be allowing games I missed from the previous year.

And though I say I’ll take the end of December off, I’m actually working on the second draft of my book. The publisher got back to me with feedback that was thorough, useful, and honestly flattering! The rewrite won’t take nearly as much work as the first draft did, but there are a few things I’ll need to really rework, so it’s no small task, either.

So…be patient. Enjoy the holidays. Hang out with friends, exchange gifts, consume alcoholic lactose. You’ve got better things to do than check a blog!

I’m not gone…just enjoying a few deep breaths. I’ll be back soon.

Announcing: Halloween and Christmas!

Happy Labor Day! Let’s talk about Halloween and Christmas.

The two biggest holidays for this blog are closer than you may realize. I recently announced my Halloween plans on the official Facebook page, so be sure to follow that if you aren’t already. It’s sometimes easier for me to push quick news there if I don’t have time to write an actual post.

In short, I’ve been busy with the book lately, so don’t worry…I haven’t stopped writing, even if this blog seems a bit slow lately. You’re going to get a really great, long, intensive piece in physical form, and it’s horror-related, so I know it’s something you’ll enjoy. Just be patient; I will make the official announcement as soon as I can.

To make up for my online absence, though, this year’s Trilogy of Terror feature will be getting a bonus entry in the form of the long-overdue return of Fiction Into Film.

Fiction Into Film is a series I deeply enjoy writing for, and one I truly love, but it’s also one that takes a massive amount of work, time, and focus. As such, I never quite get to it. There’s always something else I could (or should…) be doing.

Now, though, I’ve set aside the time. Not only because I want to give you something great to read, but because it fits perfectly into this year’s Trilogy of Terror theme.

The films I’m covering this year follow the theme of The Most Dangerous Games. That is to say, they each center upon competitions of life and death. And every one of them has a unique approach to that concept.

If you’d like to follow along this year, here are the films we’ll be covering, and the dates on which the features go live.

Oct. 10 – Fiction Into Film: The Running Man (1982/1987)
Oct. 17 – Trilogy of Terror: Deathrow Gameshow (1987)
Oct. 24 – Trilogy of Terror: Rollerball (1975)
Oct. 31 – Trilogy of Terror: Solarbabies (1986)

Each of these films should be fairly easy to find, and you might get lucky and see a few of them available for streaming. You’ve got time to look, if you’re interested in checking them out beforehand!

In addition, well…I may as well announce the date and time of this year’s Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash!

This will be the sixth time we all gather ’round the internet to enjoy five hours’ worth of forgotten Christmas specials, bizarre Christmas music, vintage commercials, and so much more.

All you have to do is visit this very website at the following time, and enjoy the Xmas Bashing.

The 6th Annual Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash!
Saturday Dec. 8, 7 p.m. Eastern

What will we be watching? I can’t tell you yet! But I have been working on the stream as well as the book (and as well as the upcoming Halloween posts!) and I know you’re going to wish I never dragged any of this crap back up and made you witness it.

It will be great!

As a refresher, here are the holly jolly trainwrecks we enjoyed in the past five Bashes.

The 1st Annual Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash! (2013):

  • ALF – “Oh, Tannerbaum”
  • Lassie – “The Christmas Story”
  • Sabrina, the Teenage Witch – “Sabrina Claus”
  • Major Dad – “The Gift of the Major”
  • Charles in Charge – “Home for the Holidays”
  • Lost in Space – “Return From Outer Space”
  • Family Ties – “A Keaton Christmas Carol”

The 2nd Annual Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash (2014):

  • ALF – “ALF’s Special Christmas”
  • The Fat Albert Christmas Special
  • Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers – “Alpha’s Magical Christmas”
  • Christmas Comes to Pac-Land
  • The Partridge Family – “Don’t Bring Your Guns to Town, Santa”
  • Santa’s Magic Toy Bag
  • Nestor the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey

The 3rd Annual Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash (2015):

  • ALF: The Animated Series – “A Mid-Goomer Night’s Dream”
  • The Bill Cosby Show – “A Christmas Ballad”
  • Full House – “Our Very First Christmas Show”
  • We Wish You a Turtle Christmas
  • Mr. Ed – “Ed’s Christmas Story”
  • Perfect Strangers – “A Christmas Story”
  • Walker: Texas Ranger – “A Ranger’s Christmas”

The 4th Annual Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash (2016):

  • Family Matters – “Christmas is Where the Heart Is”
  • The Flying Nun – “Wailing in a Winter Wonderland”
  • The Monkees – “The Monkees’ Christmas Show”
  • Amos & Andy – “The Christmas Story”
  • Welcome Back, Kotter – “Hark, the Sweatkings”
  • The Super Mario Bros. Super Show – “Koopa Klaus”
  • Rapsittie Street Kids: Believe in Santa

The 5th Annual Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash! (2017):

  • The Cosby Show – “Getting to Know You”
  • Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers – “I’m Dreaming of a White Ranger”
  • Inspector Gadget – “Inspector Gadget Saves Christmas”
  • Thunderbirds – “Give or Take a Million”
  • Dog With a Blog – “Twas the Fight Before Christmas”
  • Good Times – “The Traveling Christmas”
  • Kung Fu: The Legend Continues – “A Shaolin Christmas”

You may not see it here just now, but I’m working hard on getting some great things together.

Join me, won’t you? And thanks, as ever, for your patience and support. We’ll be together for the important holidays.

Update: Time Slips Away

Is it too soon to plan the rest of the year? When you’re someone who overstretches themselves at every opportunity…no!

For a while, even at my slowest, I was able to produce one new post here every two weeks. I thought that was a pace that was fair to both of us. But time makes fools of us all, as a wise man once observed, so I wanted to check in and let you know what to expect for the rest of 2018.

– For starters, I’m sorry. I know it stinks to keep visiting the page to find nothing new. I did know this was going to happen, and I tried to make sure I gave you a long, classic-style ALF review to remind you that I’m not going anywhere…but I have another large project that’s been dominating my time.

– That project, of course, is the book. I’m still not able to reveal much about it specifically, but I assure you that while I’m not pumping out blog content, I am still writing; you’ll just get it all in one shot when the book is released, possibly next year. I’m making great progress on it and I’m very happy with how it’s turning out. I’d say the draft is around 70% done. I’m excited to share more information with you, hopefully relatively soon.

– However, there are deadlines I need to adhere to. I owe my publisher a completed first draft by Dec. 1. That’s unquestionably a realistic target. But it does leave me with a lot less time for blog content. Why? Well, I’m glad you asked!

– October will of course see the return of Trilogy of Terror. This will be the fourth year for the series, and I’m looking forward to it. It’s been a highlight of my year since I’ve introduced it, and I love the opportunity it gives me to dig deeper into certain films than I ever would have otherwise thought to.

– That means September will be given over to watching the movies, researching them, writing about them, gathering screenshots, editing the writeups…you know. All that fun stuff that happens behind the scenes. It’s a lot of work, but I enjoy Trilogy of Terror and I know you guys do, too, so I always want to do it justice. In fact, to get you excited about it, this year’s theme is Games of Life and Death.

– Also, because I’m never happy without too much on my plate, I really want to do a Fiction into Film that complements that theme. That’s another project that requires a lot of work, but it’s also something I’d love to cover.

– I’d also really like to do another Xmas Bash! But those take a lot of work as well. If I’m going to have another group of Christmas specials / commercials / music videos ready to go in December, I need to get it finished (or nearly so) in November.

– That leaves August for me to get my draft done. Oh, except The Venture Bros. and Better Call Saul debut their new seasons in August. I plan on covering the latter, for sure. The former, I think I definitively have to pass on writing about. There’s simply not enough time.

– On top of all this, I have a job, a social life, the fallout from getting rear-ended at a stoplight in April…I’m a busy bee.

– So, yeah, don’t expect much in the way of frequent updates between now and the end of the year. I really, truly hate to say that. But do expect big, important, substantive things. What I do post is going to count, I can assure you of that much. You just might have to wait a while between posts. I’ll do my absolute best to make that wait worth it.

– I know I don’t need to post an update every time I’m going to focus elsewhere, but I respect your time as readers, and I appreciate it every time you’ve come back to see what exciting new topic I’m going to be thoroughly wrong about. I don’t want to waste your time or squander your attention. So, as a reward for being good, here’s one more bit of information about my upcoming book: it’s horror related.

– Lastly, if you’ve been visiting for more than a year or so, you probably remember that I had official Noiseless Chatter mugs for sale. They were great, but I sold out of them a while back. I’ve been wanting to get some kind of new merchandise made, for folks who want to support the site. I’m not a big fan of taking donations in exchange for nothing, and I don’t want to just get more mugs made because the shipping was prohibitively expensive for readers in other countries. So let me know what kind of things you’d like to see and would be willing to buy, and I’ll poke around!

Whew. Thanks for reading. Be patient. I’m sure I’ll have a few surprises for you along the way, but this is shaping up to be a very busy sprint to the end of the year. I thank you for your understanding, and I appreciate that you’re taking this journey with me.

As ever, stay tuned.

UPDATE: Boom

I don’t feel so bad that I’ve let these past few weeks pass without a new post. I’m proud of this year’s Rule of Three, and I’ve seen great discussion come from it both here and on social media. These articles deserve the room to breathe, and I thank you, sincerely, for reading my crap!

However, I didn’t intend to let the site languish. I have some other article ideas in mind, including one you might actually enjoy! The problem is that a few weeks ago, I was rear-ended at a traffic light. I was at a complete stop. Another vehicle hit me from behind, and the driver admitted his was using his cellphone and not paying attention to what he was doing.

Pretty cut and dry, but my brand new car is smashed up pretty good, and I sustained a neck injury that I hope is minor but which my doctor is reluctant to be so optimistic about.

I do intend to post more stuff. Great stuff! And soon! But I wanted to apologize for the unexpected downtime. I spend 8-10 hours each day sitting and writing at work, and while I never mind coming home to write for another few hours, my neck feels far better when I lie down, so I’ve spent most of my free time doing that.

My goal, however, is to have a new post ready for Monday. It’s one I’ve been passively working on for over a month now, so it’s certainly a reasonable goal. I just apologize that for the past few weeks, my car, my neck, and all of the related insurance kerfuffle has taken precedence.

I’m not dead. Ghostbusters ’16 didn’t kill me. I will be back. And when I am back, I solemnly swear to keep writing about things nobody on the face of the planet could possibly care about.

Thank you for your patience.

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