I've been running Dead End Follies for what? Almost three years now? It took me a long time before understanding what it was. It held pretty much every purpose possible, on home page as well as in my mind. I overthought this issue in every possible way, to come to a very simple conclusions. It's a writer's blog. MY writer's blog. I know it's a folder term that can mean many things. There are no two writers who are running a blog the same way. Some only promote their work out there. Others give writing advice and try to sustain a creative culture around them. Some post non-fiction pieces, articles and cultivate their relationship to the community.
I realized not long ago, that while I know what it is, I still didn't understand very well what's Dead End Follies to me? What is the place I want it to occupy in my life? Once again, I came to a simple, but vague conclusion. I want it to be my platform to readers and potential readers. The keyword here being "potential". It's clear that the backbone and the success of the site has (and will probably always be) the reviews. Over the years, I have built a decent database of books and movie reviews and hopefully, I got better at it along the way. So the reviews have never been questioned here. They are here to stay and they will always be the main purpose of Dead End Follies. It bring me satisfaction, helps me network and actually give my tastes a flattering sense of worth.
The promotion of my work is also a no-brainer. I don't think I'm being overbearing with it and I don't have anything to myself to sell yet. Once I do, you'll see a banner on the site, no doubt but no salesman pitch. At least not more than one. No, what I've been thinking about lately is the pertinence of maintaining everything around writing/publishing/literature. Don't get me wrong, it's important to understand the culture you live in as a writer and discuss it, whenever the events demands reflexion. For example, whenever Jonathan Franzen says something stupid or incendiary, there might be matter to step up (like in the eBooks case). Or when there's no Pulitzer Prize awarded for no apparent reasons. I'm not saying writers shouldn't discuss their culture, but I'm questionating the place it has to take.
What motivated this reflexion was the recrudescence of posts about writing that don't have much perspective about the craft or about anything else at all. For example, WHAT GLEE CAN TEACH YOU ABOUT GOOD WRITING *. I'm not going to question the scripting of GLEE here, which I'm sure is very clever. But it's not a crime for anybody to put the writer glasses off and watch GLEE just because you want to watch fucking GLEE and discuss the characters and the storylines on your blog. It's cool with me and that's how things should be. You don't have to justify watching GLEE all the time. We live in a free society. I've been watching THE VOICE this Winter with a crackhead and it hasn't taught me a single thing about writing. It had great storylines though. The show's more dramatic than a MONDAY NIGHT RAW episode.
Writers, by nature, are keen observers of existence. Their talent is to expose truth (or at least their truth), in the best, most appealing way they know how. It's important to talk about writing, books and publishing, because it's the way we chose in life and awareness and engagement towards the industry and the craft is preferable. But there is a whole world out there. Seen through your eyes, throught your upbringing and thousand and one modifiers that makes you unique. That's why I took the decision to post more candidly, the days I don't have anything precise schedule. I'm not going to start a diary here, but I'm going to start discussing more various subjects that interests me. The bulk of the blog will remain about literature and cinema, but expect a more opened mind and some surprise bouncing around. I'm a pop culture junkie after all, and it encompasses a lot of elements from sports to music, to cultural politics.
Dead End Follies being a high output project **, I'm always looking to improve the quality of my posting and I feel that thing stall in 2D whenever I don't bring in the full me and it's what this blog has been built around. I'm not exactly journalistic in my approach. My opinions and my reflections is (I think) what makes the bulk of my non-fiction writing. In the near future, expect Dead End Follies' regular cinema/literature output to be punctuated with wildly differnet subjects. I can't promise you'll be able to relate to everything, but I can promise it will always come from a passionate place. This is not a major change I'm announcing here (not a minor change either, mind you), but it's a change in philosophy, about how I'm running this place that I love (and hopefully you love too).
In conclusion, I want to thank everybody reading this blog and everybody who helped this place, no matter how. By sending ARCs or simply by retweeting my posts, you all helped. You guys are driving me to get better at what I do.
* This is absolutely arbitrary, but you get the jist of it.
** For those questionating the functioning, here. This blog became a morning ritual to me. Every morning for sixty to ninety minutes (depending on the traffic at work), I write my blog post and crank start my creativity like a lawnmower. Once I get thinking, I'm the Incredible Hulk (in my mind).