IMPEACH TRUMP.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Happy Fifth Anniversary

Five years ago, I did not use screen captures. I have since become addicted to them. I find them helpful in illustrating a particular scene, or showing atmosphere. After all, the topic at hand is a visual art. All my purple prose isn’t going to stand up to one glint in James Cagney’s eye, or the shadow of the villain on the wall.

Five years ago, my posts were short, barely 300 words. I had read some “rules” of blogging on other established blogs at the time to the effect that short posts were best and readers would never read a long post. I have since written posts of several thousand words. (Insert evil laugh here.)

I have read that a blog post should not take much time to write, that an hour was too much time to compose a post. I have since spent several hours writing posts, and several months in preparation of topics.

Once upon a time I used to work as an assistant editor of a monthly magazine, and I have never gotten the “let’s go to press” feeling out of my blood. My blog is like a magazine to me and I am the sole staff. I write the articles, I select the pics, and do the paste up and layout. Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, we used rubber cement, and the layout was done by hand, draping strips of typeset on the card stock “boards”, and shooting halftones in the darkroom. I loved it. The blue pencil that would not photograph edit marks, and the X-acto knife that shaved off the messy bits like a surgeon’s scalpel performing delicate cosmetic surgery.

When I hit the icon to publish the blog post, to me it is putting the magazine “to bed” and sending it “to press”.

One of my favorite lines in “Funny Face” (1957) is when Kay Thompson says, “A magazine must be like a human being. If it comes into the home, it must contribute. It can’t just lie around.”

I hope this blog, this virtual magazine, has contributed in some way to your enjoyment of classic film.

This is the fifth anniversary of Another Old Movie Blog, and as mentioned last week, I am offering my new eBook, a collection of essays selected from the blog for FREE for the next four days.

“Classic Films and the American Conscience” is available exclusively through Amazon for at least the near future, and then may be offered at other online shops at some point.

It is a long book, well over 300,000 words (no kidding, they mumble and all roll their eyes to the ceiling). Some short essays, some long ones, but enough words, I hope, to show that blogging need not be necessarily a lightweight endeavor, or even impermanent, simply because it is virtual. Nor is blogging “dead” just because Facebook and Twitter require very little work, and make it far easier to connect to a network of strangers.

I have dedicated the book to my fellow classic film bloggers. Most of us are strangers, but together we share a unique bond, and come from all walks of life. This year a silent black and white film has won the industry’s highest award, and we are smug. Rightly so, for the rest of the time we seem to be regarded as a nostalgia-crazed fringe group, somehow naïve G-rating worshipers, clustered around TCM like wanderers in the wilderness around a campfire.

I can remember some 30 years ago when classic films were regularly shown on broadcast television, and not just on the late, late show. I did not think of them as old movies, just as movies. They were still very old, but they did not seem as if they were from a different world, if only because they were so easily accessible in my world. TV gave me them to me, for free, on Saturday afternoon when I was 12, on Friday night when I was 15, just after school on weekdays, or right after the news. At any time, Humphrey Bogart or Shirley Temple might be in the living room. No big deal.

A person growing up in the 1960s and 1970s had a greater chance to become a fan of classic films because they were always on some channel when you flicked the dial.    Enough so that a kid in the end of year variety show at my high school could do impersonations of Katharine Hepburn as her act, and everybody knew who she was imitating.

I can’t imagine a high school kid getting a laugh today in their school show with the old “The calla lilies are in bloom again” line. Sound of crickets chirping in the school auditorium.

There were only four stations, not much else to distract you.  And many actors from Hollywood's heyday got work on TV comedies and dramas as guests, or even starred in their own shows.  You learned the players, just by absorption.

The 1970s also saw a burst of the first nostalgia craze, and that drew a lot of attention to old movies. This might find its way into a future blog post.

When "Gone with the Wind" was first shown prime time on broadcast television in 1976, the world seemed to stop.

Today, I think it is harder for younger people to become accidentally introduced to old movies.  There are hundreds of channels now, and infomercials are more profitable fillers.  One has to purposely tune in to TCM (if their cable network offers it), or hunt for titles on Netflix, or be introduced to classic films by someone they know with a large collection.

TCM provides a treasure trove, and the opportunity for those of us who love them to see films we’d never known about; but newbies have to find the way there first. We veterans know what we’re looking for, and many resources to find it.

I wonder how many are finding their way to old movie fandom through blogs? If they are, I hope one of them is this blog.

Hop over to Amazon here to download your FREE copy of “Classic Films and the American Conscience.”

And thank you, most sincerely, for the pleasure of your company for the last five years.

Now, let's go to press.

36 comments:

Patti said...

Well, I just recently found your blog, so I haven't had the pleasure of your 5 years' worth of posts. But I do extend a hearty congratulations to you!

I look forward to getting your book. I have to tell you (and you will find this funny!), I am not an e-reader at all. I was thinking I would download it and then print it out!! HA!! 300,000 words! My printer couldn't handle that, and to take it to Office Depot would probably cost me $50. So, I guess I will become an e-reader...for your book anyway. Thank you for the wonderful gift of the free download.

It's funny...though I have been blogging since 2006, I only started my classic movie blog last year. I did so because I hoped to inspire my friends to discover the classics. I thought if I shared snippets of movies I had seen, they would have their interest captured and want to see the movies themselves. Alas, the vast majority of my friends have never even visited the blog. They simply have no interest in films which are black and white...or 60-80 years old!

Again, congratulations! Here's to many more great blogging years!!

LucieWickfield said...

Happy Fifth Anniversary! I sincerely hope the 1000+ word posts continue to appear for well over another five years. This is most certainly one of the finest classic film blogs on the internet. Here's looking at you, kid.

Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. said...

Happy fifth blogiversary, Jacqueline! Short posts are for fops and poppinjays!

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you so much, Patti. Definitely do not print this book. Your printer will explode. I hope your friends will eventually check out your blog, as indeed I hope all our readers do. I wonder if people have become more selective these days and less willing to take a chance on something different.

Lucie, I really appreciate your kind words. Right back at you, baby.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tony said...

Happy Fifth! It's an achievement and milestone, and simply great that you're keeping the art of blogging alive, when the blogging countryside is being ravaged by the Facebook and Twitter hordes!

Great stuff as always, Congratulations!

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you, Ivan. Your choice of words always cracks me up.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thanks, Tony. I guess I'm part of those hordes, too. Must purchase lance and helmet with the horns on it.

Rich said...

It's not just the Bogart/Hepburn type films that used to be part of the TV landscape either. I'm just barely old enough to remember watching monster movies and kung fu flicks on free TV on weekends and holidays. Thanksgiving in particular seemed like the time for Godzilla or giant ape flicks.

Happy anniversary. I like your blog for your fine wit and your deep film knowledge.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thanks, Rich. I also remember there seemed to be a lot of Tarzan movies on TV when I was growing up. You'd hear kids hollering that Tarzan yell all over the neighborhood. Never as good as Carol Burnett, though.

KimWilson said...

Happy blog anniversary, Jacqueline. While I've just recently come to your blog, I have enjoyed reading it immensely.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you, Kim.

The Lady Eve said...

Jacqueline - Happy Anniversary! "Another Old Movie Blog" is a very special 'magazine' that contributes much and does anything but "just lie around."

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thanks, M'Lady. Very kind.

Karen said...

Happy anniversary, Jacqueline! I enjoy your blog immensely, and look forward to many more years!

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you, Karen.

Kevin Deany said...

Congratulations, Jacqueline. I always start reading one of your posts with the keenest of appreciation, as I know I will be equal parts amused, challenged and will make me look at a favorite in a new way or introduce me to a movie I have never seen.

Yours is one best classic movie blogs and I look forward to the next five years (if the world doesn't end in December, that is).

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you so very much, Kevin. I really appreciate your kind words. Don't worry about the world ending in December; it won't. I'm kicking around some blog post ideas for that month, and I can either pencil in movies or pencil in the end of the world, but movies come first on my agenda. The Mayans are going to have to reschedule. I'm booked.

policomic said...

Thanks for your wonderful work, and Happy Anniversary!

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you very much.

Cliff Aliperti said...

Happy 5th Anniversary! And in a somewhat bizarre twist, my site first went online March 5, 2002! We're birthday twins :)

Thanks again for the alert on the promo days for your book. Heading over to grab mine tonight!

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thanks, Cliff. I hope you enjoy the book. Congratulations on your site's 10th anniversary.

Classic Film and TV Cafe said...

Happy blogaversary, Jacqueline! Five years is an amazing accomplishment. Your blog continues to be one of my regular classic movie reading pleasures.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thanks very much.

J.C. Loophole said...

Jacqueline-

A very, very happy fifth! You deserve it all and more, and I am lucky to count you among my erstewhile online friends and am grateful for that! I am looking forward to rereading favorites and catching up with essays I may have missed in your book.

Much love and wishes for continued success-
Your pal-
JC Loophole

ClassicBecky said...

Jacquline, congratulations! Your blog is very special, and your dedicated work always produces interest and important info. I loved your take on being a classic movie lover: "we seem to be regarded as a nostalgia-crazed fringe group, somehow naïve G-rating worshipers, clustered around TCM like wanderers in the wilderness around a campfire." Too true! I think it is a shame that it is so much harder to introduce younger people to classic film. Easy and fast seems to be the bywords of the day. What a shame. Wonderful post, and again, congratulations!

Laura said...

Hi Jacqueline,

Wished you congratulations yesterday via Twitter but I wanted to be sure to join in the party here, too!

Turned on the computer yesterday and immediately went to Amazon and downloaded your book to my Kindle Fire. Your blog is a treasure and I look forward to visiting each Monday and Thursday -- here's to many more years of blogging!

Best wishes,
Laura

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Deeply honored by your presence, JC, Becky, and Laura. I'm grateful for your kind words, and most especially your friendship. Thank you so very much.

Joel Bocko said...

Not much else to say except I very much enjoyed reading this & keep up the good work.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you, Joel.

Yvette said...

How did I ever miss this event? Jeez. Sorry, Jacqueline. I'm going to celebrate by going right over to Amazon and seeing if I can get your book...wait, it's the 8th. No more free-bee. Well, I'll see what's what.

My problem is that I really do dislike reading off my computer screen. I don't accept books from hopeful authors for that reason alone. I get a headache and the screen just doesn't hold my attention. I have one of your other books in my folder and hope to read it at some point. But it's kind of 'catch me in the right moment kind of thing' so I apologize for that.

Anyway, HAPPY BLOGO-VERSARY m'dear. Even though I'm late, it's well and truly meant.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thank you very much, Yvette. I think you've still got a few hours to sneak in the free book. Please don't make the effort if reading off a computer screen gives you a headache. I'm not worth a migraine.

Thanks again.

John Hayes said...

Much belated but very heartfelt happy blog anniversary to a great blog & a great blogger! This is going to be a wonderful book!

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thanks John. I'll just be happy if not too many commas are misplaced.

Yvette said...

Thanks for understanding, Jacqueline. I don't know why it's a problem for me. I mean, I can read in snips and patches, but that's about it. I'll eventually get through a book but it takes forever with many stops in between and a bottle of ibuprophin. :)

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Not a problem, my dear. I'm current working on getting "Cadmium Yellow, Blood Red" into a print book. If it works out and doesn't kill me, I'll try to put more books in print.

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