I admit, I haven’t been the best blogger in the universe. I haven’t been doing a very diligent job of updating this thing, or my Facebook. I also don’t have a Twitter, because I think Twitter is fucking stupid. I also don’t have an instagram, because I’m not a very vision oriented person. Also, I’ve heard Instagram is Twitter for illiterates, and as I said before, Twitter is fucking stupid.
My only real excuse is my side projects required a lot of my attention. For a while, I was playing with the idea of streaming gameplay, as well as a podcast.
As of this posting, I believe I may be done with streaming. I wasn’t expecting to get Pewdiepie levels of fame over night. I played the YouTube game back in 2007-2008: when a little guy stood more of a chance of getting somewhere, and one-hundred subscribers was considered a milestone.
A lot of my disappointment with my latest YouTube outing has less to do with the response (or lack there of), and more to do with the fact I hated about eighty percent of the videos I’ve put up there now. There were some unforeseen instances that ended up hampering the experience. Like that Darkest Dungeon stream where I forgot to switch on my mic. Or that WWE2K17 stream where I laughed at entrance music that apparently got filtered out of the archived version for some reason. Or the fact Knee Deep requires a lot of reading, and I’m a slow-ass reader.
SIDE NOTE: that jigsaw in Knee Deep ended up being a lot easier to solve than I originally thought. Shit, if I knew the pieces turned yellow when you connected them properly, I would’ve braved the sstorm. Oh well.
I haven’t given up on the idea of streaming altogether, but I think this might be less of an ambition, and more of a fun little aside I occasionally do.
No sir, the REAL distraction that has taken time away from The Hood and the Heroine: book 3 of the Gael Saga, is my podcast: Red Flannel Radio.
I started the podcast when I was between books, waiting for cover art, and really wanted to give the podcast game another go. I’ve done podcasts in the past, and… Well… Let’s just say, rate of success may vary.
In 2006, my friend, frequent cover artist, and former roommate and I tried our hand at podcasting. We made a dumb little show by the name of The Mechanical Cannibals. I think. Mechanical Cannibal was definitely involved in the title. Either way, it was apparent out the gate that neither of us knew what we were doing, and we both had different ideas about how to do this.
Roomy wanted a super-organized blueprint laid out before we went into recording, and I wanted to just throw caution to the wind and just dick around for an hour. In the end, we ended up compromising with a very loose blueprint that left room for improv. We had segments, but none of which were concrete. We’d have segments like game reviews, movie reviews, my roommate’s “annoying song of the whenever”, and a couple others I can’t remember anymore. Just because they were on episode 1, though, didn’t guarantee they’d carry over to episode 2.
Another big problem with Mechanical Cannibal was finding a webhost. I was playing with 50webs.com at the time, but they didn’t allow you to host mp3 files. Least of all if you had a free account like I did at the time. Soundcloud didn’t exist in 2006… Or I didn’t know about it. In any case, we shared it on one of those file storage sites like megaupload.com. Except it wasn’t that specific one. I think it was something like File Jar or something? All I know for sure is that was a terrible way to host the show, and unsurprisingly, we got discouraged to keep going after the three episodes we recorded were met with absolute dead silence. It doesn’t help episode 2 got taken down by the site for… Some reason. Probably copyright infringement, seeing as how it featured the annoying song of the whenever.
Four years would go by. Then, in 2010, I’d plug my PS3 headset into my computer tower, and adapt my religious obsession for UFC into a podcast. This time, I learned from the mistakes of the past, and while I still wouldn’t have called myself an expert, I had a better idea of how NOT to do a podcast.
This time around, I was running a show by the name of The Sacred Octagon. I posted my audio to still images, made a video file out of them, and posted them to the now defunked blip.tv. As a bonus, you actually made money if people let the ads play. Unlike last time, I knew that a show with a very specific topic required a more concrete blueprint. I talked mostly about UFC events, though I occasionally talked Bellator, and maybe even Strikeforce. A lot of the time, it was recapping that season of Ultimate Fighter, or giving my predictions on UFC pay-per-views. Not to mention reporting results from those UFC PPVs, and seeing if I guessed right. Hint, I don’t think I did all that often.
In mid 2011, I ended up putting the show on hiatus due to the home stretch of my college years demanding my immediate attention, and me taking my attempts at getting for-real-published a lot more seriously. I picked the podcast back up in 2013… Only to fall victim to “The Great Blip.tv Purge”.
I didn’t keep copies of my videos, or even the audio files, because why bother? It’s a weekly show about a very topical thing. As a result, I basically lost everything, and couldn’t reupload anything to anywhere else because I’d lost everything else.
For the next few years, I chose to make my writing the primary focus. It helped that 2012-2014 was more or less the height of my old blog’s popularity.
Then, in 2017, I began my most recent podcast: Red Flannel Radio. This right here was the podcast I wanted to have over a decade ago: no script, no structure, no mercy! The only rule I set for myself was to try really hard not to talk politics. And unfortunately, Donald god damn Trump is just too tempting a target for a hardcore Berniecrat like me to take potshots at from time to time.
Honestly, this podcast is a show I consider to be my greatest success in the field yet. I have a reliable host with Soundcloud.com. I have about ten subscribers as of this posting, which is about seven more than I was ever hoping to get. And just in case Soundcloud decides to kurplode, or purge someone like me as the result of going a different direction, there’s a couple other podcast hosts I know of. A friend of mine recommended I do what I did with Sacred Octagon, and post video versions on YouTube, but the problem is I’m pretty sure YouTube’s little algorithm will find something to bitch me out over. Namely, I like to use thirty second clips (give or take) of music in my intros and outros.
I have no idea what to say other than Red Flannel Radio has been a blast. I actually look forward to Tuesday afternoons now. I just sit back, and I dump all the chatter in my brain into a thirty minute (give or take) slab of audio file. I have some laughs, I discuss topics I want to talk about, I don’t have to worry about maintaining a segment, or skimming through news sites… It’s pretty much just thirty minutes of TJB being TJB. Or Flannel Guy, as I seem to be known on this show, but it’s all good.
So yeah, I’ve been distracted as all hell with this podcast. Who knows: if indie publishing ends up not working out, I might just keep this up.
But make no mistake, dear reader: The Gael Saga will be finished. I know I flopped on Jade Blade Legacy, but this one I do plan on finishing. From there… Eh, we’ll see. But for now, I do plan on finishing The Hood and the Heroine. Right now, as of this posting, I’m up to chapter 27 in the first draft. Admittedly, that’s not quite where I thought I’d be, but I’m making progress. And without YouTube channel to worry about, I should have that much more time to devote to the project.
I’ll be sure to keep you posted on news and updates. Till then, I strongly recommend you check out the podcast.