Changing Direction


This has been a really bad year on this site. Despite the continued popularity of some of my features, updates have been few and far between – especially compared to last year, when I used to routinely post three new pieces each day. There’s a few reasons for this. First of all, I’ve been a lot busier this year, so there’s been less time to get things done. Secondly, when I haven’t been busy, I’ve been ill with depressing frequency. And finally, of course, there’s my own mounting disengagement with the blog.

Honestly, I don’t know what to tell you. Somewhere along the line, this stopped being fun for me and became, instead, an onerous task. I’m very proud of what I’ve done here over the last 8 years, but I’ve gotten a tad burned out. And I’ve waited too long to tell you that. Mea culpa.

So what I’m planning to do, after today, is to stop posting new content for a while unless it’s new content that interests me to post. Too much of what I do here I do more from duty than joy, and that’s the fun killer for me.

Now, obviously, a site not regularly posting new content is going to slide in the search rankings, so I don’t plan to do that for too long. I have a plan. In no particular order, here it is:

  • Effective immediately, no more updates to The Rock’n’Roll History of the World. I have more than 200 entries waiting for me to write them – and a like number of bookmarks to assorted lyrics that I haven’t even got that far with yet – but I was also in the process of reformatting all the old ones when the Big River company decided to replace their existing widgets with a “new and improved” version that is larger, uglier, and lacks the fine control of the old one. Until that situation is resolved, there will be no new posts in this feature, and no more reformatting (because I now have to start that process all the fuck over again, and I just can’t deal with that right now).
  • When I come back, I’ll be re-doing the site’s theme and navigation. I’m going to be spending some time brainstorming that, and I have a couple of friends I’m planning to ask for help there, but my goal is to retain the accessibility of the current site while cleaning things up a little. This will most definitely include the creation of a site map, but other than that, I don’t know what else it will look like (although after a while with dark themes, smart money is that the next one will be lighter in colour.
  • I’m also considering going more personal with the blog. More talking about my life, about Australian politics, about the books and comics I’m reading, the games I’m playing, the films and plays I’m seeing. This is something I find a tad worrisome in this insecure age, but I think that what’s missing from this site, most of all, is its author. I’m tired of being the ghost in this machine.
  • I do have a few ideas for new features, some of which I think people are going to love, some maybe not so much. This point intersects with what I was saying about the redesign, above – some of these possible features have technical requirements that would need to be accommodated for them to find a home here. Some of them may wind up on independent sites. At this point, there’s insufficient data for me to decide, so research is going to be happening (not that this will be immediately visible here, but know that I will be busy even if the site doesn’t look like it).
  • The various Trade Paperback Timelines are all going to be staying, and I will be getting back to updating them more regularly. Ditto the Crossover Reading Orders, of which I have a few being worked on at the moment, and a list of the ones I want to add. (If there’s any new content before the redesign kicks in, it will be those.)

So that’s present and future of The Centre Cannot Hold. I hope you’ll be patient while I work this out.

Update: Period Ending September 14, 2015



Trade Paperback Timelines



The Podcast History of the World

Trade Paperback Timelines

Update: Week Ending July 27, 2015

Not a lot this week – I’ve added quite a few new entries to the Podcast History and done a little bit more work updating entries in Trade Paperback Timelines.

I realise that this stuff is kind of dry, but it’s what interests me to work on right now, and also, there actually are no new Rock’n’Roll History entries for July – I’ve posted every last one that I know of (which doesn’t rule out me learning about other songs in the future, just that for the moment, the well is dry). There are new entries coming up in August, so that’s something to look forward to. And some point soon, I’m going to be heading back into Crossing Over, with new entries popping up there, too.
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Update: Week Ending July 20, 2015

Weird, huh?

I mean, this Weekly Update immediately follows the last one in the feed. It looks like I’ve done nothing when I’ve literally created hundreds of new posts. But to list them all here would overwhelm this entire page with a long, long list of years. And I don’t want to do that. So instead, what I’ve decided to do is simply to list which podcasts and which periods have had material added to them this week. I realise that it’s not a great solution, but it allows this post to be much, much shorter than would otherwise be the case.
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Update: Week Ending July 13, 2015

So I got impatient this week, and pulled the trigger on something I’ve been working on for a while, launching it even though there’s still lots and lots of work to be done on it. But it was time: The Podcast History of the World‘s hour had come round at last, and it is born. (Messily, like all births.) I’m trying not to spam people with too many new posts to it on any given day, but given that there will be somewhere in the region of 3000 posts all up, I also want to get them up in a reasonable span. Still working on a compromise there, folks.

I’m not going to be ignoring other features of the site (although I’m still wavering on how I want to deal with The Rock’n’Roll History of the World, although I am determined to come to an end of it in the not too distant future.

Also, I’ve been working on the Trade Paperback Timelines, and the main Marvel Universe one is nearly up to date with its reformatting (and with a lot of new volumes added to the more recent pages), but I don’t want to release it until I can put up all the reformatted pages, and I’m currently about 3/4 of the way through 2011. So it’s getting closer, but it’s still a ways off.
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Update: Period Ending July 6, 2015

That was a much, much longer break than I intended. Things aren’t helped much by the fact that The Rock’n’Roll History of the World is winding down – although there’s still more than two hundred entries to go, they’re spread out over the next six years (assuming I continue to publish each on its correct day). And aside from The Campaign for Symmetrical English, I don’t really have anything daily to do right now on the site, which makes ignoring it that much easier.

I’m thinking I might start doing some of the challenges from the 30 Day Challenge Archive, just to give me something to write about here. I did something like this before, and I really enjoyed it, so there’s that. (Suggestions gladly accepted.)

Anyway, here’s the (embarrassingly small) amount of new stuff I’ve done here since June 16:
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