Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Season Eight, Patreon, Social Media Channels, Imaginative Logo

Hey, dugs. What's happenin', dugs.

Here's a bunch of links. Please click them, dugs.

Arby 'n' the Chief Season 8 - Extended Teaser
Arby 'n' the Chief Season 8 Soundtrack
Arby 'n' the Chief Patreon Campaign Page
Imaginative Logo Facebook Page
Jon's Facebook Profile Page
Jon's LinkedIn Profile Page

Sorry it's taken so long for me to write this. I have a love/hate relationship with writing. After writing the screenplay for the premiere episode of the season, which is currently ninety-something pages, I had to put some distance between myself and keyboards for a while. That's when I put on my post-production hat and started filming and cutting the teaser together. Lots of all-nighters.

Now I'm trying to build my pathetic online presence a bit before I finalize the premiere's script and film and edit the scenes that are left. Might have to hold a few brief casting auditions, definitely have a few e-mails to send out.

My blog isn't quite the heap of shit it was a week ago. I'm not the biggest fan of social media -- I used to hate Twitter. I think there's a blog post on here from me somewhere swearing to never use Twitter or something. So much for that. Unfortunately, if you want to make it in media these days, you've gotta make all these goofy profiles. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, AssBarrel, DickPurse, FedoraHead, DildoSphincter, all the sites.

I made another retarded video. It's so gay. Check out how lame it is.

I also made a terrible synthetic, try-hard 80's-style soundtrack for the new and final season. You can not listen to it right now by avoiding the link.

I created a support campaign for the season on Patreon for some reason. Please don't give me any money, because the show's terribly made, has naughty words, poses an extreme danger to children everywhere and is, considering the terrifying damage it will inevitably inflict on humanity in the long-run, a plague upon the world.

Let's not forget the two service workers who died trying to unclog a couple of my episodes from inside the internet tubes. They drowned in internet. I don't know about you, but drowning isn't the way I wanna go out. I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy. Except anybody who isn't straight or white like me. White power. Anybody want a ride to the rally tomorrow?

I wrote a wall-of-text biography on the page detailing my pained childhood and the roots of the series' creation even though nobody's interested. Be sure to start reading and give up on the first line of the second paragraph. Words are a thing of the past. It's all about emoticons and commentary videos now, they're the future of language. It's time we got with the program, guys. After this blog post, my entries will be composed entirely of pizza icons, soccer balls, party hats and random Vines. Some ASCII faces too, as if emoticons weren't abstract enough. Don't worry, you'll totally get them. What, you don't know what a forty-five degree angle mouth face means? Get your heads out of your books and read a text once in a while.

I placed some polls on the right side of my blog, and I'm going to put up a few more shortly after writing this, so take another look if you've answered already. I'm collecting data that will shape my video release schedule, which also effects which donation model I should go with on Patreon. What's the longest you're willing to wait between episode air dates? Do you want to wait a while for production, then have the whole season of episodes air once a week back-to-back? Are you willing to watch episodes sooner, but have to wait two or three weeks, possibly a month between episodes? Should I produce a single act of episodes within a season, then release it as a batch of one episode per week while I work on the next act, with a larger gap in between acts?

Please answer the polls if you have a minute, or share your thoughts with me via e-mail if you have an idea that you think I haven't considered and need to go into some detail.

jcjgraham@gmail.com

As of writing this, my campaign has seventy-two backers, with a per-video figure of nearly five-hundred dollars. It's quite thrilling. Thank you so much for your wonderful generosity. I'm really glad that the show has managed to resonate with so many people and bring such a supportive audience together. I'm in the process of putting the listed backer rewards together and will send them when I can.

If you have any ideas for rewards that aren't currently options on my Patreon campaign page and wouldn't be too distracting from my work on the show to deliver to you, please let me know. Preferably something digital, but I'm open to suggestion.

I created a Facebook Page for my new personal production studio, Imaginative Logo Productions. I gave up looking for graphic design gigs because trying to land one's so cut-throat -- wizards of Microsoft Paint like me are in such high demand.

Please like my page. I pour the likes into my blender, they make great smoothies for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It's a great way to stay in shape, and I haven't had to buy groceries in months. Facebook likes should be the universal currency, food, everything.

I made a profile as well. Please avoid spamming my wall with horse cocks. Seriously, don't. I don't want Mark Zuckerberg kicking my bedroom door in with his hands on his hips, wobbling his head from left to right as he asks in a weird voice what the hell's happening. If you intend on grooming me through private chat and burying me alive in a barrel somewhere after you've finished cutting and having your way with me, please at least lure me with plenty of tits. Like on that one True Detective, dude. You know the fucking episode. High five, bros. Up high! Down low! Too slow -- psyche!

So, I'm unofficially a university graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in motion picture production. My convocation's in June. I made and fleshed out a LinkedIn profile to show myself off a bit to the corporate world.

That's right, I'm a pro-fessional. I'm the most professional fessional I know. I have a degree now, that means I'm the ideal candidate for any job I want. I'm guaranteed an income of at least six figures, a beautiful woman and a condominium. I've already scheduled a barbecue in my white-picket fenced yard with the wife, kids and the family lab. I'm not even married yet, no kids. I'm gonna hit a bar tonight and round up some broads to watch me get into a fight I start, and I'm on my way to the dog shelter now. I'm driving. I shouldn't really be writing this at the wheel, I'm on the highway, but I'm already doing coke. I'm looking through the front windshield every ten seconds, I think that's what you're supposed to do. The dog's name's gonna be Peaches. I can hear everyone honking, but I think they're just jealous they can't get a bump. What a bunch of queers. Anyway, you're invited to the barbecue, unless you don't have a degree. Anybody who doesn't is the scum of the earth and I fully support their public execution by beheading. A link to the petition will follow shortly. I trust you'll all show your support. It's time we did something about these fucking degenerates. We could always eat them, like the poor. Another reason I haven't had to buy groceries. Delicious.

Whoa, shit -- almost hit a truck there. It's alright, I'm back in my lane.

On the left side of the site you'll find a list of all the episodes of the eighth season to come. The overall structure, number of acts and episode titles are all subject to change, as they usually have been, but it might give you an idea of the story that's going to play out. I know people like to talk about this sort of thing, I do.

The feedback on the teaser so far has been great. No trolls, I'm shocked. Did you all die of starvation? It's like that feel-good scene in a zombie movie where the last of them are drawing their last breaths from empty bellies. Then I walk into frame in a dope jacket and blow your heads off with a hollow-reaction bullet.

Everything's been positive and/or constructive. The feedback really helps, including criticism of the story -- sometimes I've fixed plot holes as a result of fans pointing out things that didn't make sense. I hope that continues. I already have a list of fixes I've written in terms of story plotting and post-production based on what you've had to say, so thank you. The full premiere episode will be better for it.

For one, the watermark appeared a lot more transparent in Premiere's program window, so I'll make that more transparent. I'll consider getting rid of it entirely, but I'm not sure. I'll shrink it down at least, it is a bit distracting.

Also noticed lines at the edges of the frame between the letterboxing and the video boundary on a couple of shots in which you can see scaled video that's meant to be cropped out -- immediately after the upload. of course. I swore so loud that I woke up my friend. He lives in the Yukon.

One person wanted me to remove the black inner stroke from the white lettering of the toys' subtitles, purely for the sake of nostalgia. While I made every attempt to preserve the look of the original show to make it seem to the fans it never left, that's one alteration I'll defend. I looked at the episode without the inner stroke -- it really does improve the visibility of the text against the background, I have to keep it. I'm trying to mix the best elements of the show with upgrades that make sense, as all sequels should.

I appreciate all the critique, kind messages and fan mail, please keep it all coming if you're willing to take the time. They make me feel fuzzy.

I'll admit, you likely won't get a response from me as I'm juggling so many things at once, but I do read everything that I get. Every e-mail, every comment on every channel, so if you want to be assured that I've read something, don't worry. And if you've sent me a map I've requested and I haven't gotten back to you in a while, I apologize, I've been keeping myself busy with all this social media management. I'm trying to build more of a presence and network before I start rolling out content, I want to give myself at least a chance of success in this industry.

As well as shoops of me wearing #SWAG caps, swastika tats and smoking joints, very talented people have been sending me the likes of music tracks they've composed, fan art, samples, animation demo reels, vocal performances, et cetera. It's all been great, please keep that coming as well. Already seen some really impressive material that I'll be keeping in mind from now on for potential partnerships in the future.

Somebody made a comment on the possibility that I'm producing this season and launching a crowd-funding campaign to exploit the fans. It bothered me, even though it was one guy in a sea of positive enthusiasm.

I think the best way to address this is with honesty. Financially, I'm in a hole, and yes, the show does have a network of enthusiasts who'd love to see more content. Am I taking advantage? Well, I can't deny that my work on the show has been the most creatively rewarding experience of my life so far, and nothing I've done since has given me the same rush.

My time spent at school has had its benefits -- I now know how to work on a film set, have a basic understanding of all the equipment in each department, one or two more tools to play with when it comes to writing and some experience in every film production role, including first assistant directing which I'm not keen on doing ever again. Completely different thought process, all logistics; not for the creative types. I had two nervous breakdowns on my last outing in the position, constantly paralyzed by indecision contrary to my belief that, with all my years spent writing, I was at least mentally competent.

The best aspect of the program by far has been my network of peers, all very talented, creatively-driven and wonderful people, also with great senses of humor and a riot to party with. Great friends you can't put a price on, regardless of how steep the tuition was. So I may be hanging on for dear life from the tooth of a sarlaac pit of debt, but at least I'll get the odd poke on Facebook.

Other than that, I was often bored or frustrated to tears by classes and assignments. I wrote a lengthy rant about school in my Patreon biography.

I didn't think I'd be once I finished the seventh season's finale, but at this point I actually enjoy the thought of producing one more for a number of reasons. For one, as I've explained before, I like writing for Arbiter and Chief because their arguments are pretty much the same as the ones always happening in my head. In addition, the seventh season's ending certainly wasn't free of bitterness, and struck me as a perfect opportunity to create a final, positive act for the story. And to do it with no middle-man this time with full creative control and free of censorship? Sounds good to me.

I love making stuff, releasing it and reading people's reactions to it. It's like a comedian going on stage, putting on a good show and walking off ecstatic.

However, if I'm gonna work on the show, I could use a bit of help. I can't give it my full attention unless I can cover my living expenses, otherwise I've gotta take production assistant gigs around the city to pay the bills, which fucking suck. Jobs like that are where creativity goes to die. You're paid reasonably and fed well, but you're guarding a parking lot for seventeen hours, cooking in the sun, getting yelled at, frightened that you're doing a bad job because nobody makes eye contact with you, and you probably won't make it home until two in the morning. Then it's back on set for six or seven if you're on the next day, which a lot of people are. Some kids do that and school, I don't know how the fuck. Production assistants try to quit, but they look at their paycheck for their less intense job that follows and cringe at the thought of how much money they could be making if they just stayed on the film crew.

I can work retail, but I did that for two years during high school and I hate that too. I will if I have to, of course, I'm not saying I'm above that sort of thing by any means, but I'd sure as hell rather be making movies. I have the education now, as well as decent though somewhat lacking equipment, the distribution networks, established lore and audience. I can write and edit, thank God. I'm getting the hang of music composing  a bit more too, it's really fun. I think my new tracks definitely sound a lot better than my old ones.

I also have a willingness to excel with this season, as I've always had at the start of every one I've done -- I can see for myself a visually evident increase in quality with each string of episodes, and I don't think this season appears any different so far based on the effort I put into the teaser. The quality increase hasn't necessarily been in all the right ways for some, but ways that felt important to me as a writer and filmmaker at the time.

Anyway, if you like what I'm throwing out, I hope you consider helping me do this for a living. Given my previous seven seasons of work on every aspect of their production, I'm hoping I've banked some good will.

Paulie Frost is on the back-burner for now, but still a project I'm very passionate about and hope to work on someday. My current career goal is to one day be the showrunner of an animated series for the web or television. For those not in the know, you can find a synopsis of Paulie Frost on my Patreon campaign page, under the 'Animated Series Pilot' goal on the left side. It's a comedic action and science fiction cartoon I'd like to write and direct.

Again, thank you all so much for your donations, kind comments, feedback, critique, e-mails, tracks, maps, demo reels, images, gags, etc. It's all great. Really appreciate it. Please stay tuned.

Cheers,
Jon