Saturday, January 18, 2014

Cheer Up, Guys. This is Not Goodbye. It's Just I Won't Ever See You Again

When I started this blog in spring 2008, I thought it would be a good way to express my thoughts on movies and, to be honest, keep busy writing. My freelance career was limp--it would get worse when the Great Recession hit over the summer--and I needed a distraction.

Even if I never got a book deal, or even an assignment, this blog filled that need. It kept me sane during failed job interviews and unreturned phone calls and awful freelance assignments. It provided a forum for people to read my stuff. I didn't feel like I was writing for an audience of none.

Nearly six years have passed and things have changed so much. It's time to say goodbye to What Pete's Watching.

I'm now at a point in my career--knock on anything within walking distance that is wood, including trees and neighboring houses--where my freelance career is actually a career. I'm writing about things that keep me interested and happy, and that's where my efforts need to go. The musings that I would generally put on this page should put money in my pocket. I have a wife now. We'd like to buy a house and fill it with little people and big stuff.

But, Pete, where will I read your thoughts on movies? Facebook and Twitter (@PeteCroatto, by the way)--combined with the fact that every publication I write for has a digital component--makes my blog obsolete as a halfway house for reviews. To be honest, copying and pasting the reviews was driving me nuts. I'd post something from ICON, find a mistake, and spend 30 minutes climbing out of a shame spiral. As someone who considers himself a perfectionist, the blog was not allowing me to let things go, keeping the tinkering spirit alive so it could rise up and kill me while I took a shower or had breakfast.

This was never just a movie blog. The signs were obvious early on: the book column, the ETC. Movies were just one part of the material. As I write more stories about sports--a lovely, unanticipated development, by the way--maintaining a straight-up movie blog seems, well, a bit silly. I will start another blog, but one that features more variety and gives me more joy. When will that happen? I don't know. Could things change and I'm back to ranting about movies? I don't know.

What I do know is that I appreciate each and every one of you who read my posts, left a comment, or told me they liked something. Thank you. It was fun.