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State of the Blog – October 2015

I’ve got to say, September was a bit of rough month over here at Plot and Theme. After very strong success in August, I fell back below my site views for July and published fewer posts than I have in a full month. You may have also noticed that my Classic Review Friday posts fell by the wayside a little bit there as I was traveling and then occupied with work, which is disheartening. Still, I saw some great movies and made some very good posts this month, so I would like to focus on the successes with this State of the Blog post. Let’s get to it.

As previously mentioned, views fell back into the 2K+ range for the month, but a great deal of them came from older posts. The Disney series remains popular, but also for some reason people keep clicking on my San Andreas Something Earthquake Pun post as well. Your guess is as good as mine with that one, but people seem to like it. Of the posts that I published this month, my It Follows piece was the most-viewed, likely helped by its cross-post to CinemaAxis and a few reddit links as well. I went on something of a horror kick during this month for some reason, as The Babadook was another great movie and post.

But, without a doubt, the best thing I have done this month is my ongoing Denis Villeneuve week. In my previous State of the Blog post I mentioned that I would be doing this, but thought that I would be able to watch Sicario earlier in the month. Unfortunately, it only opens to a wide release tomorrow (October 2nd), so I had to wait until now for all this sweet, sweet Villeneuve action, but I am loving it so far. I know the beginning of the week focused on some esoteric offerings from the director, so I didn’t expect a great number of readers there, but I would encourage anyone who enjoyed his English-language films to look into Incendies in particular. Look later today for my review of Enemy, and then tomorrow for Prisoners, and then my Sicario review should be posted later this weekend.

Alas, I have neglected Classic Review Friday posts, and I don’t like that I have done so. These posts work the best when I just make a decision to do them and run with it, so that is what I am going to do from now on. As always, I welcome any suggestions that my readers may have, otherwise I will continue just writing about whatever pops into my head. I think my next one will be on Pleasantville of all things, so look forward to that.

Yet another entry on the list of things I didn’t get to publish this month are the three longer essays I have in the works, but I am getting to work on all of them right after Villeneuve week is in the books. First, look for my United 93 piece to be published next week, something on Don Bluth to show up mid-month, and a horror film budget analysis piece to pop up around Halloween in an effort to get people to go see real horror films instead of Paranormal Activity 9. Hopefully by writing these out here I will stick to them, as these longer essays are my favorite pieces to write – but are also the most challenging.

As for movies that I am expecting to see this month, we’ve got a few doozies. I’ve got my The Martian tickets in my pocket as I write these words, so I will have a review on Ridley Scott’s film early next week. I am a Fassbender freak and my old lady is on a Sorkin kick of late, so we will get out to see Steve Jobs at some point. I may also convince her to see Crimson Peak, and we’re both on board for Tom Hanks in Bridge of Spies (director: Steven Spielberg, written by the Coen Bros – absolutely unreal). And, maybe I can find some time to get out to see a limited release or two. In particular, Room and Suffragette are supposed to be fantastic.

September feels like a bit of a disappointment from my end, as I think other aspects of life elbowed out writing and I felt weirdly unmotivated for a long stretch of time. Maybe there was even a bit of writer’s block around there at one point. Anyway, the month is in the books, and it is time to move forward. I’ll endeavor to make October the best month ever at Plot and Theme, but I will need some help with that.

As it stands, I can continue posting reviews that receive zero “likes” and more views from random search engines than Twitter and Facebook combined because I am starting to learn that writing these pieces makes me more appreciative of the movies I am writing about. I am noticing more things, enjoying film more than ever, and always excited for what I get to watch next. Here’s the thing – it can get frustrating putting all of this effort into writing these opinion pieces, reviews, and bigger essays and receive no feedback whatsoever. I don’t mind if you read a post and immediately think, “meh” and move on – that’s fine. I want Plot and Theme to be a cool place where people can spend some time learning about new movies or being reminded of old ones and just generally have fun. If you do have fun, or learn something cool, or horribly disagree with me on a point, then I encourage you to engage in the comments, share with some friends, like the posts, and continue to click around.

Thanks for reading, and I hope I can continue to get better at this and make stuff that you want to keep reading and sharing!

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Derek Jacobs

Chicago,IL 60606

A website

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