An Absent Presence

Forging back into the 2013 Fall Semester of my school year, I’ll be diving headfirst into a semester of studying, schoolwork, journalism, reporting, and extracurricular activities mostly involved with the Kappa Sigma fraternity.  Because of this, I will not be able to visit this site and post as frequently as I would like to.  If this were any other year, I would be sulking about in this return, mostly drowning my sorrows in some Elton John and endless bottles of Coca-Cola.

What does this mean for me though, now that I have discovered my site and my newfound presence on the blogosphere?  Not much really.  I’ll still be putting posts up on my website, writing reviews, reporting news announcements, and piping up my own opinion on ‘The Scope’ every now and then.  None of my functions on this site have changed one bit.  The only difference between the semester and now is that my postings will be more irregular than they already have been, and I won’t be able to post on my site as much as I want to.

Again, this doesn’t mean much difference except for a quantity of articles.  Experienced film critics like Peter Travers or Michael Phillips post an average of 4-6 articles every week.  At my current rate, I have only been producing about 2-3 articles every two weeks, reaching Travers or Phillips weekly numbers by the end of a month.  That’s embarrassing, isn’t it, to admit that you’re one-fourth of a professional film journalist?

It is what it is.  I choose not to compare myself to those journalists only because I haven’t reached their level of expertise yet.  If there is anything that I’ve learned this summer of film reviewing, its that film criticism takes a great amount of thought and dedication.  It’s not enough to simply watch a movie and have an opinion of it: people do that automatically, from the petite three-year-old toddlers to the average 80-year old retiree.

It’s easy for anyone to have an opinion, and its easy to assess why you have that opinion.  What’s difficult is deciding who the film’s intended target audience is, and whether it will appeal to that audience or not.

The difference between myself, Travers, Phillips and normal moviegoers is that we’re required to assess what elements will appeal to its target audience and what will not.  We do this through the words we write in our critiques.  Whether we liked a film or not isn’t the point: people should be able to read your review, and whether they agree or not, should at least reason whether or not it will be something they want to see or not.  This seems like it would be a simple job, but not when you think about all the elements you need to take into account when writing your review.  How easy is it, for instance, when trying to describe whether movies like Taxi Driver, Cloud Atlas, or The Tree Of Life will win over its target audience or not?

Nevertheless, I have had a great thing happen to me over the course of summer break.  I have learned what it meant to be a film journalist and I gained more experience as to what the online database is like.  When I first started this site, I had little to no clue what I was doing.  I played with menus, I designed topics, I took photos, I practiced with designs, and I kept fleshing out what my site would look like and how I would market it to my audience.  When I first started, all I had was a few articles and many, many empty pages. on my site  Now, I have had well over 800 views of my articles, I have seven subscribers, and I have people regularly commenting on my articles whenever they pique their interest.

My site is not at the level of my other fellow bloggers, but that is besides the point.  This is a great starting point for me.  Over the course of the summer, I’ve learned the value of consistency, accuracy, opinion, and debate, and I’ve got to experience what going “viral” felt like.

To which I need to say one thing to whoever is reading this: thank you.  I would have not made it this far without your interest and support, and I certainly would not have made it this far without your initiation to click onto my page.  Whether you commented on an article, shared a link, subscribed to my page, or either just pointed-and-clicked any of my articles on Facebook or Twitter, your support has helped me mature as a writer/journalist/blogger/critic, and helped me better understand the world I am trying to appeal to.

So again, and again, and again, I say thank you.  This is not a goodbye, but rather, I’ll see you soon.  To the seven-or-more people who consistently follow my site, you are in my upmost regards and appreciation.  I’ll be back before you know it.

To those who are visiting here for the first time, I encourage you to stick around.  A few surprises just might come your way.

-David Dunn

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