Reading too deeply into these things since 1981
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Update and reminder!

March 26th, 2017 | Posted by Philip J Reed in Meta - (0 Comments)

This is your final official reminder to please, please, please (pretty please?) take the Noiseless Chatter Reader’s Survey. It’s only 10 questions, many of which are multiple choice. It shouldn’t take longer than a minute or two, and you can write as much or as little as you like.

The results I’ve gotten back so far are…exceptionally helpful, actually. So thank you to everyone who’s taken the survey already. If you haven’t taken it yet, consider setting aside a moment to do so. Your answers help me to make this site a better reading experience for everyone.

Please click here to take it.

As far as updates go, April is going to be a pretty great month, I think. I have the next two (nearly three) Fight, Megaman! pieces done and just about ready to post. They still need to be edited, but the bulk of the work is done, and I look forward to sharing them. That’ll take us halfway through the series, and I’ll get a chance to talk about the less-loved (and less-often-covered) games, which is really what I’m looking forward to. I hope you enjoy.

But mainly, there’s the return of Rule of Three. That’s my comedy-movie offshoot of Trilogy of Terror, and it begins April 1. On that day and for the two weeks that follow, I’ll be taking an in-depth look at three related comedy films. Last year I did three Muppet movies. This year…well, you’ll have to tune in and see. But I will say that it’s one of the first trilogies I thought about doing last year. Again, I really hope you enjoy it. They’ve been a blast to write.

Also, Better Call Saul returns in April, so you’ll have those reviews to look forward to. Possibly six years from now, if history is any example.

Otherwise, I’m sure we’ll have some other, smaller posts to look forward to, but I’m excited about April. Those are six longform posts more or less in a row, and I’m proud to be able to share them with you. I always enjoy writing the Trilogy series, and based on the feedback I’ve received so far, you guys look forward to it as well.

Any guesses as to what I’ll be covering? Any comedy or horror trilogies you hope will be covered in the future?

Let me know. Take the survey. And tune in Saturday, April 1, when we’ll kick off a “big” feature.

There. That was your only hint.

It’s that time again! Please take a moment to complete the Noiseless Chatter Reader’s Survey.

It’s quick. I promise. Only 10 questions, many of which are multiple choice. It shouldn’t take longer than a minute or two, but if you’d like to write more, hey, write more!

I always take the results of these surveys seriously, so this is your chance to speak up about what you like, what you don’t like, what you want to see, and what you hope this site never becomes. The survey is completely anonymous, so say whatever you want, and don’t worry about anyone’s feelings.

Be open, be brutal, but above all be honest.

This particular survey is especially useful to me, as the site…has kind of a blank slate right now, really. Sure, I know the kinds of things I’d like to write about, and I’ll likely do that no matter what, but I no longer have the weekly ALF commitment ruining my life, so knowing what you like and don’t like will be a big help to me when it comes to prioritizing projects and ideas.

In short, know that this survey is important. To me, to this site, and, ultimately, to you as readers.

So please, take the Noiseless Chatter Reader’s Survey.

I’ll be collecting results through March 31.

Thank you in advance for participating.

Now get surveyin’.

’16 Going On ’17

December 31st, 2016 | Posted by Philip J Reed in Meta - (7 Comments)

So ends everyone’s favorite year, ever.

I don’t think anyone within my circle of friends — real life friends and online friends alike — made it out totally unscathed, but that’s what comes with surrounding yourself people who still have shreds of moral decency, I guess. The point is: we made it through the arbitrary stretch we’ll all look back on as “2016,” probably while rolling our eyes or making a sour face or something.

It was a rough year, but I don’t need to tell anybody else that. And as we look forward to one of uncertainty (unless you’re one of my readers who is already on January 1, in which case it’s probably at least a little more certain)…this blog’s future follows suit.

No, I’m not shutting it down. (TOO BAD.) But my longest, most consistent project ended this year. I have a few other balls in the air, and some ideas, but it’s going to come down to where (and when) the inspiration finds me. I don’t have a specific direction right now. I do plan on running a reader’s survey* again very soon, so I can gauge what it is you would like to see here, but…frankly, I don’t know what 2017 will bring here.

If that sounds worrying or depressed or anything else along those lines, it shouldn’t. It’s exciting. I’m going to discover what comes next right alongside you. And I do have ideas for some posts that I know I’ll enjoy writing.

But…overall…

I don’t know.

And that’s okay.

There’s a lot that we don’t know as 2017 begins.

I just want to thank you all for making my year a little bit brighter. Every comment, email, Facebook message, or anything else I get from a reader makes my day. Even when they call me names or ask for my address so they can mail me ALF puppets.

You guys are great. And I’m thankful every day that I have an audience willing to indulge me in my bottomless, neurotic nerdery.

That’s the highlight of every year.

Thank you.

Now go have fun. Okay?

—–
* And please participate! I’ll have a prize or something, but, mainly, these surveys are tremendously helpful to me, and I want you to make your voice heard.

Merry Christmas!

December 25th, 2016 | Posted by Philip J Reed in Choose Your Own Advent | Meta - (2 Comments)

Hey. I’ll be back with my typical year-end post, but for now: Merry Christmas, if you celebrate that. If you don’t, happy December 25. Thank you for reading, and for tolerating my wallowing in literacy this holiday season.

I deeply enjoyed writing these. It was…good for me, I think. It was a chance to just write. Not to worry. Not to be anxious. Not even to think very hard. These are books (or sometimes authors) that already mean a lot to me. I knew what I wanted to say. I sat down and said it. And that helped me a lot to get back into the habit of writing…something that, to be honest, has been difficult for me lately. Having a daily commitment was good as well. Without that…I can’t imagine I’d have done much of anything.

So thank you. I needed this. I hope you got something from it as well.

If you’re interested in the full list, or just want to revisit any previous entries from my advent feature, have at it:

Day 1: Catch-22
Day 2: Blindness
Day 3: Lord Jim
Day 4: The Catcher in the Rye
Day 5: The Postman Always Rings Twice
Day 6: Point Omega
Day 7: The Boy Detective Fails
Day 8: Ulysses
Day 9: Pale Fire
Day 10: Mother Night
Day 11: The Good Soldier
Day 12: Middlesex
Day 13: Flatland
Day 14: The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman
Day 15: The Big Sleep
Day 16: Against the Day
Day 17: Mostly Harmless
Day 18: The Great Gatsby
Day 19: The Road
Day 20: Of Mice and Men
Day 21: The Devil in the White City
Day 22: The Sound and the Fury
Day 23: Nineteen Eighty-Four
Day 24: The Hotel New Hampshire

I appreciate all of you. Be good to yourselves, and be good to each other.

Let’s do our best this coming year. It’s bound to be a bumpy ride.

Black Books

Starting this week, it’s the Noiseless Chatter advent calendar: Choose Your Own Advent!

A new post every day(!) from December 1 – December 24. Each one is a writeup of a different novel, covering a grand total of 24, and spanning many different approaches to the material.

Specifically, I think back to a comment longtime reader RaikoLives left here, thanking me for speaking about the experience of reading each book, as opposed to just summarizing plots. I’m taking that approach for Choose Your Own Advent as well. There may be recaps, there may not be, but these pieces will all, in some way, reflect my experience as a reader, as a writer, as a human being whose life has been improved and enriched by an appreciation for literature.

I love books. You…probably know that already, but I always feel as though I don’t write about them enough. This is a chance for me to scratch that itch, and it may help you find something great to read in the new year.

I get asked for reading suggestions often, and I love to respond personally to those whenever I can. But…well…now I can do it on a wider scale, and I really do hope you enjoy it. It’s the biggest series this blog’s had in a while, and I’m excited to share it.

There aren’t many rules, but I did want to set a few so that the posts would be varied and, hopefully, interesting.

Novels only. So no non-fiction, no graphic novels, no short story collections. Sorry, but I had to narrow the criteria somehow, or I’d be here choosing books forever.

Only one title per author. Because otherwise I’d never shut up about Thomas Pynchon.

Approximately 1,000 words each. Those are pretty short posts by this site’s standards, but I think that still gives us a lot of space to find interesting inroads. It’ll add up to around 24,000 words for the feature when all is said and done anyway, so I hope it pleases those who enjoy both bite-sized and meatier reading material.

This is not a “top 24 greatest novels” list or anything; the books covered won’t even necessarily be ones that I like…they’re just ones that I had something to say about. And while you can probably guess a handful of titles that I’ll cover, I know there will be some big surprises as well, as I’m using this series to spotlight some books that I might not otherwise have any opportunity to write about.

Anyway, come back on Thursday, December 1 for the first entry. We’ll get to celebrate the end of one monumentally shitty year by immersing ourselves in my favorite medium.

I hope you enjoy. Thanks for reading.

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