Hello there

So, you may have noticed a distinct lack of content here on the blog (and everywhere else), and though I wish I had a reasonable excuse for neglecting you all, I will say that I’m working on a schedule that will allow me to upload content for you all with increased regularity.

[I’m so sorry if you think I abandoned you]

You also might have noticed a slight cosmetic difference to the blog’s homepage and banners. I’ll give you a breakdown on those changes in just a moment, but first I’d like to address a change in what I intend to use this blog for, then explain a brief road-map going forward.

As of this writing the blog has just shy of 100 followers across all platforms – a humbling and exciting figure, to be sure, but engagement has suffered due in large part to my lack of uploads. So, to atone for my creative sins, I’m planning on uploading some form of content at least three times a week. The goal is, of course, to drive up engagement enough so that one: I’ll feel motivated enough to keep making things; and two: Keep the dream of this being a viable livelihood alive.

Here’s what’s changing.

I made a decision recently to change the overall purpose of the blog. I plan to venture away from (though not abandon) commentary and reviews of movies, television, and video games; and integrate many of my other creative projects right here for all to see. At my core, I’m a writer of fiction and non-fiction. Most of what I write is short, palatable, but deeply contemplative. My first inclination was to register a separate website domain and begin the process of designing and promoting all over again.

I don’t want to do that.

I want everything, my short stories, non-fiction essays, poetry (good or bad) all in one place. Add to that my Black Beanie Gaming YouTube channel and the podcast I co-host, and the artwork I do in my spare time – why not consolidate it all into the blog? Not only will this be easier for me, having one place to share and promote my work, but it will be easier for you, dear reader, to see it.

Changes begin along the banner at the top of the website, where you’ll see new menu items. ‘Writing’, ‘Art’, ‘Reviews & Commentary’, ‘Black Beanie Gaming’, ‘Podcasts’, and ‘Patrons’. Each of these may be selected or hovered over with the cursor to bring down a sub-menu with further categories.

Writing has three subcategories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, and Essays (though these headers may change in the future.) This will be where I post my personal writing, be they short stories, serials, or flash fiction. I’m very excited to share all of this with you.

Art has no sub-category as of this writing, but may in the future. Here’s where I plan to share any of the doodles or possible commissions (you never know) that I’l do in the future. You’ll be surprised how often I’ll add to this.

Reviews & Commentary is where you’ll find everything I’ve produced for the blog so far. All of my written reviews, news, box office updates, and commentary on Games, Movies, and Television can be found here through the drop-down menus. I arranged this to be as user-friendly as possible. Hover or click your way through the menus to find what you’re looking for. All future articles reviewing or discussing these topics will be sorted here.

The Black Beanie Gaming tab now has several subcategories. Clicking on the tab outright will take you to a list of articles containing the videos themselves and a brief description. The first sub menu will take you directly to the YouTube channel, where you can subscribe and browse uploaded videos there at your leisure. The next will take you to my Twitch.tv channel – more on that in a bit. The third will take you directly to the Black Beanie Gaming Twitter account, where you can follow along with updates pertaining specifically to the YouTube channel. There will also be a link to the Discord server.

The Podcasts tab, when clicked, will present a list of articles containing links and descriptions of the latest episodes of the That Was Okay I Guess podcast, which I co-host, and the gaming focused Black Beanie Podcast that has yet to launch. The first drop-down menu is a direct link to the That Was Okay I Guess podcast page, where you can subscribe and listen to each episode. The second drop down is an empty link that will eventually lead to the Black Beanie Podcast – more on that in a sec.

I can’t describe the Patrons tab without discussing the future so . . .

Here’s what’s coming.

I’ve set up a Patreon page, where fans of the blog can pledge a certain dollar amount every month to ensure that I can keep making content. Patreon manages monthly donations in Tiers, which I’ve varied in dollar amount from $1/month to $50/month, with Patron benefits raising exponentially further up the ladder. Under the Patrons tab will be a link titled ‘Become a Supporter!’, which will take you to the Patreon page and you can select a tier should you choose to do so. The page itself will have all the information about becoming a supporter you will need.

In the future, specific content will be available only to Patrons. Access to all content prior to the launch of the Patreon will be free. All reviews, commentary, Black Beanie Gaming videos, and both podcasts will be available for free, as well as some samples of my personal writing and art.

The lowest tier of $1/month unlocks everything available on the blog save for the VIP Content page, which will only be available to subscribers of higher tiers. The second tier of $5/month offers the same, but with recognition given to you on the Supporters page of the blog, where I’ll enshrine your good will forever.

Higher membership tiers will be more expensive, ranging from $15 to $50/month, but would include early access to videos and blog posts, access to a VIP Content section with goodies just for you, recognition of support not only on the blog but in specific articles, Black Beanie Gaming YouTube videos, and future livestreams. You’ll have a more direct line of communication to me with special privileges in the Black Beanie Discord server (which it totally live now, by the way.) VIP tiers have limited availability, and would hopefully consist of those of you who have a greater interest in my content and being a part of this Blog and YouTube Channel. Not to mention I’ll send you a very special Black Beanie Gaming black beanie.

Please note that as of this writing the Patreon page is not activated, but once I begin posting again with some degree of regularity, and if the interest is there, I’ll launch it fully. This plans requires a lot of work on my end, but I’m up to the task. The goal is to offer additional incentives to Patrons, not to withhold content that was previously available.

Wrapping up

The game plan for content moving forward is this:

  • At least three uploads to the blog per week. This could mean a review, a piece of artwork, short fiction, non-fiction, or box office update. It’s nebulous at this point, but I’ll hone down a schedule eventually.
  • Every week a new episode of the That Was Okay I Guess movie podcast is released on iTunes, a notification will be posted here.
  • At least once a week I plan on releasing a Black Beanie Gaming video to YouTube, a notification will be posted here.
  • At least once a week I hope to begin streaming games via Twitch, not only to keep Let’s Plays on the Black Beanie Gaming channel shorter, but in order to communicate directly with you all while we experience some of my favorite games together.
  • Should engagement rise and demand for more content increase, I’ll take steps toward launching the Patreon page.

There’s no timetable for any of this, and absolutely no obligation on your part, dear reader. I’m just happy you decided to stop by to begin with.

Until next time.

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