Discover more from All the Fanfare
The Friday High Five
On branding, poor timing, and slaying imaginary monsters
This week’s High Five comes from the 1987 film Predator, which was on the short list of films I considered for All the Fanfare’s inaugural article. If you’ve been on the Internet for any length of time, you’ve seen this image reused endlessly in memes. If you’re a film dork like me, the image immediately conjures the accompanying dialogue.
Dutch (played by Arnold): Dillon! You son of a bitch.
<uber-manly handclasp morphs into mid-air arm wrestling, which has never happened in the history of forever, but is somehow believable and compelling>
Dutch: What’s the matter? The CIA got you pushing too many pencils?
As burns go, that’s an all-timer.
Have a great weekend! High Five!
5 Things I’m Loving This Week:
Custom URLs 🖥️
YouTube Premium 💎
Dungeons & Dragons 🐉
Point Break 😵
Yep, I’m a nerd.
As part of my overall strategy for Fanfare and All the Fanfare, I have recently moved to custom URLs as follows:
Medium: medium.com/fan-fare —> fanfare.pub
Newsletter: ericpierce.substack.com —> newsletter.allthefanfare.com
I cover why I moved the Medium publication here, if you are interested. In short: it looks better, outwardly. I’m going to start asking studios for review screeners. Part of that is looking like a professional publication and not some random Medium blog.
As for the newsletter—I am tying it closer to the work I’m doing on All the Fanfare, so it makes sense to use the same URL. When I started this newsletter, I wasn’t 100% sure what to use it for. I just wanted a home base for people that follow me. While that remains true, the what & why have evolved. I now see this newsletter as an ancillary piece to All the Fanfare, because it allows me to fill in the gaps between the full-blown articles. I don’t just disappear for a month at a time while I go unfathomably deep on a movie and then struggle to make a fun and riveting article out of it.
This newsletter also allows me to let my hair down. I’m never very serious online, but I am even less so here. The me you get here is basically the real deal.
Funny insights on your favorite pop culture properties, delivered to your inbox for free.
Typically I plug pop culture things I’m digging in the High Five—books, shows, games. Sadly I did none of those things this week, which has me reaching a bit to fill out this five. But no matter how busy I am, I always have time for some YouTube.
I had YouTube Premium previously for a brief period, as part of a trial or something. I let it lapse, and only then did I realize how ubiquitous and annoying all the ads actually are. So I subscribed to Premium and I haven’t looked back.
30 second ads might not seem like much, but apparently I’ve reached that stage of life where I will gladly pay money to reduce annoyances.
I’ve been writing on Medium for 4 years. My love for the platform has ebbed and flowed as it has given and taken away. But the past several months, they’ve really been on a writer-friendly tear.
Recently they introduced a concept called boosting, which is a way to get more eyeballs on good stories (and thus, more money for the writer). I actually had one of my stories boosted during their trial phase in January, and it made many magnitudes more than anything else I wrote on Medium recently. (Funnily, I don’t even think this is like, my best writing, or anything. I wrote it mostly out of frustration in about an hour. So it goes. Anyway, here’s a free link to the story in question, which is about the MCU.)
Seems like a really bad time to substantially shift away from Medium, no? My timing is impeccable.
Zulie Rane recently interviewed two Medium employees about how the program works. The interview is full of great insights. I watched it twice!
Dungeons & Dragons
My son turns 19 this weekend. We married early and had kids early-ish, but I know. It’s flipping crazy. I certainly don’t feel old enough to have an adult child. I’m barely an adult myself.
His birthday party is a marathon game of D&D with me and my friends (he played recently with his friends when everyone was home for spring break). But for his actual birthday, this was his request. So! Shields will be splintered and cake eaten.
And and! My brother will be visiting for a few days this week and we’re going to play again with him! D&D for days! Dice for everybody! Why am I shouting!?
D&D is basically my favorite thing ever.
Obligatory Point Break entry.
There comes a point in every writing project where you start to question everything: the idea, your sanity, your talent. I call it the ‘oh shit, this sucks’ phase. A lot of writers get stuck here and never make it out the other side. I’ve been pulled under plenty in the past.
I am currently knee-deep in it. Doubly so since I’ve sorta made a big deal about all of this.
The work is going slower than I’d expected. Part of it is digging through my mountainous notes, looking for the perfect anecdote I half-remember hearing somewhere. Part of it is life getting busy at just the wrong time. But most of it is doubt, and pressure to make it perfect the first time around. Which it never is, and I know that. But this is how it goes sometimes. The head knows one thing but the heart is a stubborn ox, and it has somehow convinced my fingers to join its alliance of misery.
So that’s fun.
One thing I’ve been thinking about is the best way to format the article. A 5000-word block of text is going to look pretty impregnable, even with ample use of white space. I can use stills from the movie to break things up, but everyone does that. I want graphics, and graphs, and art. I want little graphical bits I can easily share on social media.
As a trial run, I asked my artist friend if he’d do some drawings of the Ex-President masks. We’re going to start with one and see how long it takes and therefore how much it’ll cost for everything I have in mind. It’ll be an investment made out of my own pocket, but I think it’ll be worth it in the end. And with custom art comes the opportunity for merch! Which could be part of the profitability equation.
It’s become fashionable to use AI to generate art for articles. I considered doing likewise, but it honestly felt wrong. I’m not using AI in any part of the writing. Why use it for the art? Don’t artists deserve to be paid, too?
Until next time.
What are you into at the moment? Leave a comment and let me know!
If you enjoyed this, please like it and share it with someone. It’s the best way to show your appreciation and it would mean a lot to me. :)