Tag Archives: YouTube

‘Frozen’ and ‘The Thing’ make an awesome combination

I enjoyed the movie ‘Frozen,’ and have on more than one occasion professed my love for the movie, ‘The Thing.’ As such, here is something that mixes the best of both worlds for all of you horror fans who just may be a bit sick of that song.

(Made by Lee Hardcastle, check out his awesome work here!)

The Tunnels – WFTI Podcast

Hey everyone!

I just wanted to share that our newest podcast is out! It’s based on a story that hasn’t appeared on the site yet, and I hope you enjoy it. So far we’ve put the most work in to this one and I think it shows. As always, thanks to Graham for the great audio work.

Enjoy, and if you like it, subscribe to the channel and like the video! You can do this through clicking the “Watch on Youtube” video on the player.

And now, “The Tunnels.”

Thanks!

Chris

On failure

I’ve been recently told that I need to slow down on my projects or I’ll burn myself out. This is a valid concern (given my New Years pushups and running resolutions) however with writing and my side projects, I feel like slowing down will burn myself out. I am enjoying creating content for others to read. I can only hope it’s entertaining, but the goal here is to create something worthy of just two minutes of someone’s time. Just a year ago around this time I heavily started writing. I’ve always written, but I wouldn’t have called myself a writer until then.

Back then, I was terrified of criticism. I would worry about each piece I was thinking of showing to people, and then show them only to select groups from where I knew I would get positive feedback. I would never dare put my writing up online for fear that someone wouldn’t like it. Just getting one negative review would be enough to throw me into a shame spiral. But you know what? Now I don’t really care about that.

I just started on YouTube working on my podcast. It has been a long time in the making, and my friend Graham is lending his amazing sound mastering experience to help supplement my writing. We’ve gotten pretty positive responses, but also something that I’m not used to. Now, for the first time I’ve received visibly negative feedback.

I got my first dislike, my friends.

What would originally have destroyed me has actually inspired me. I try and think of what I can do differently for the next video instead of beating myself up about it. When I look at my project’s failings, it’s not out of self-pity, but to continue to improve and thrive.

A few posts ago I mentioned that I had scrapped the work on my novel. People I know, to put it simply, politely freaked out. They worried about all the time I put in to the current drafts. What they didn’t realize was that I was already on my third attempt at the same story that just wasn’t working. I had invested all told about 40,000 words on writing that I was trying to force to work. Now I don’t believe that all writing is inspiration and magically flows through you or some such. Writing is work, in some cases harder than other things. But when you can’t shake an idea and keep it as a sacred cow, you can’t improve on it.

So, I scrapped it. There are still copies of it on my hard drive so I can’t say I dramatically burned the thing to the ground, but I no longer consult them. I started writing fresh and shed the plot elements I was so concerned were needed, and ended up having my characters take me to where I needed them to be. Yes, writing is work, but sometimes there are those moments when the words talk back to you. You just put them to paper and they glow. Other times you stare out the windows wracking your brain for the next big step.

The dislike on my video was more puzzling than disheartening, but I get it. A week ago I sent Graham a new cut of recordings I did for the next episode of the podcast. I waited for a response because I wanted to get in to it, and he replied that I had made my voice so gravelly and stuttered that I sounded like a barely literate Batman. I thought I had sounded creepy, he thought that me being ‘creepy’ sounded like I didn’t know how to pronounce the word ‘exercises.’ He was brutally honest about it, and I loved it. I learned more about recording in that 5 minute conversation than spending time trying to figure out what I think people would like. It’s been one of the most helpful criticisms I’ve gotten in my career.

Like any other blooming YouTube sensation, I tend to exaggerate but I also watch my click-through-rate and advertising statistics. They make sense to me now. They ebb and flow just like everything else and the goal to getting views isn’t just good marketing, but also providing great content. I had run ad campaigns that shot up my views, but did little to keep people except for a dedicated core of viewers and readers around. I was getting my 15 minutes without any of the benefits.

Moving forward, I’m working on making myself better in all ways. I’ve started doing my pushups again, and now I’m learning how to use video editing software in addition to the sound aspect of the project. Graham has his own projects to worry about, so the more I can help him with the mundane aspects of the editing the better. But I need to start considering my technical skills in addition to my creative ones. Graham is awesome with sound because not only is he a skilled musician, but he’s also passionate about all aspects of recording music. Thanks to this podcast, he’s transitioning into Foley work as well. It is as new a field to him as recording and video making is to me.

That’s what I need to learn how to do. Not just focus on the technical or creative aspect, but both. They can live together in harmony and don’t need to be mutually exclusive. I can watch CTR’s and also not compromise myself as an artist or whatever pretentious spin you want to put on it. People will like things, people will hate things, but if you want to be successful you need to keep putting out work, and scrap your sacred cows when they aren’t working for you.

I was so afraid of failure with the podcast initially that we had the episode recorded for months before it actually hit the internet. It was my first foray into the audio arena of the internet, and while it isn’t perfect, it was a start. Scrapping my novel and starting over has been the best decision I’ve made yet, as I’ve written more in two days based around the same general elements than I have in the last month on this project. It all comes down to not being afraid to admit failure, but not letting that failure stop you or slow you down. That’s how we learn and that’s how we prosper. If I hadn’t gotten rid of my flawed progress on my story, I would be rewriting the same 40,000 words. Just spinning my wheels unhappy with everything, but since I had already gotten that far, there was nothing I was able to do.

Getting that far is only part of the trip, the other is making sure the journey is worth it. If Wally World is closed, savor the journey, but also turn the damn car around and go to Disneyland.

Thoughts on Recording

So I’ve been getting slightly into the technical side of audio recording with my buddy. Graham, who is an awesome audio engineer, has been guiding me through the worst of the pitfalls, but for the moment I’ve been doing a lot of experimenting with it myself.

It’s actually been fun as hell!

I always wondered just why exactly it was so prohibitive with regards to cost to get in to, and now I get it. I’ve been using free software and have been seeing the limitations. With video editing, I’ve run in to the same problem. My wife, the graphic designer, has access to a bunch of Adobe programs except the ones for video production. Windows Movie Maker can only take you so far.

Either way, I hope you guys enjoy the work we’ve been putting in to the podcast. Sorry I’ve been a little sparse on updating on here, but I’ve been working on audio-only stories, as well as print-only stories. I’m debating whether or not to start adapting ‘The Map’ for corresponding audio pieces as well, but I feel like I would want to get a stable of amateur voice actors for that one.

So timeline wise coming up, you should be able to hear the new podcast episode come out next week. I should also have a few new stories for the next week as well. I’ve been trying to do a few horror let’s plays as well, but there have been technical as well as ‘Chris-in-front-of-the-camera-with-nothing-to-say’ limitations.

Regardless, I’m having fun, and should have some impressive stuff for you guys soon considering how quickly we’re learning. Thanks for checking out our stuff, and consider subscribing and liking stuff on our YouTube page!

Thanks everyone!

 

Episode 2 | The Old Church

Hey everyone!

It’s been a while in the making since we’re still getting a hang of this “YouTube” thing, but episode 2 of our creepypasta series is out!  The Old Church is one of my original stories written for a 100-word story competition, featured earlier on the site. Thanks again to Graham Grochocinski who does all of the amazing sound work and makes my voice barely tolerable!

If you like this, please check out our previous episode, Darkness.

Enjoy, like, and subscribe if you want to see more!

Handier than I thought and an announcement

Donkeys unrelated. I just love that photo of me.

So my biggest problem lately has been staying in one place long enough to spend time writing. A lot of my best writing has been done while propped up in bed, or on the couch, but balancing everything has been a huge pain in the ass. I wanted to buy a lap desk, but Karen reminded me I’ve been dropping cash left and right on things. So, I decided to make my own!

I’m not even going to pretend that this is impressive, but I’ve been amused and how quickly I macguyvered it together. It’s only mid way done, and is effectively just a piece of pine wrapped in pleather left over and scavenged from my costume, and glued into place.

WIN_20141117_062851
A masterpiece in progress. Yes, that is weatherproofing caulk. Shut up I ran out of superglue.

 I’ve been feeling like working on a DIY project for a while and this is a simple, but fun start. Cobbled together in 20 minutes, I can prop it on a pillow once done and have a non-slip work surface once I get the urge to move around the house. I want to build my own writing desk soon, but I’m going to need wayyyy more tools for that.

Ever since I’ve started writing I wanted to start doing more stuff with my hands. I’m a target shooter as a hobbyist, so cleaning and breaking down simple machinery kind of scratched that itch, but lately I’ve been in such a mood to create that I’m trying to learn new trades.

Speaking of which! I’m starting a YouTube channel. It should be up by next week, just waiting for my partner in crime to get some of his professional recording mics together. I tried recording with my webcam and headset and… well it wasn’t pretty.

It’s going to be me, me reading stories, and me doing other stuff. Me, me me me me. Yeah I know you can’t get enough of me. (Please don’t close this tab yet.)

So, keep an eye out. I’ll make a post about it, but my first real video is going to be me reading my original story, “Hypothermia,” from the blog. Yeah, it felt thematically right given that it’s my new project and a horribly cold start to winter. The story has been revised since it’s original publication. Not heavily, but enough.

Looking forward to seeing you all next week when I try building a house,

UPDATE: The final product:

Real men wear pink and steal their wife's pink wireless mouse. B-)
Real men wear pink and steal their wife’s pink wireless mouse. B-)

Unexpected bonus, the backing of the pleather also reads the wireless mouse perfectly. Not too shabby for 20 angry minutes of work, a hacksaw, utility knife, a bottle of super glue, and then weather sealant if I do say! Saved $20.