Farewell… and Thanks!

It's been a fun ride, but all good things...

Written by J.T. Johnson

When I was six years old, my older brother Jason showed me the original “Star Wars” Trilogy (at that point in time, that’s all we had boys and girls). That was the moment that I no longer just saw cool images on the screen. I saw a story about a young farm boy who goes out amongst the stars to seek his destiny. That experience also started a lifelong love for the movies.

When I was eight years old, my parents got divorced and when I would visit my dad on the weekends, we would rent movies and watch them throughout the night on Fridays. I have many memories ranging from watching a boy freeing a whale named Willy to watching Keanu Reeves attempt to stop a bomb on a bus from exploding. I remember being thrilled by a bank heist in “Heat” to watching a man find hope and freedom in “The Shawshank Redemption”.

These were golden times in my childhood and eventually I enjoyed watching how the magic was made as much I was watching the films themselves. Thanks to the power of DVDs at the time, there were usually several special features showing me the unique tricks of the trade. Yes, in high school, I wanted to work in the film business but, unfortunately, life got in the way.

Despite the fact that I was still trying to write a screenplay, I had to go get a full time job and deal with some family and financial matters on the home front. My dreams were put on indefinite hold as a result. However, I was still a massive fan of films and eventually, I had created a MySpace page when that was the dominant social media site at the time.

On that site, there was a “My Blog” section and I realized that I could share my thoughts as a movie buff with my friends. I wrote embarrassingly short and terrible film reviews to let my friends know which films I recommended and which ones I thought they should steer clear of. This was in 2007 and only a short year later, I started to expand my thoughts and turned them into full fledged reviews.

I eventually created website called JT’s Retro Reviews that eventually turned into JT’s Movie Page. It was then transformed into Geeks, Inc. Online (named after a group I had created and ran on Facebook). Eventually, I finally settled on calling it The Geekly Blog. For the past three years, I’ve been running the site under that name.

And it’s been fun as hell sharing my reviews over the past decade. I always loved coming to you as a fellow audience member to share my views on the cinema. So, why am I stopping something that I’ve loved doing for so long?

Over the past year, I’ve had a familiar creative itch pop back up. In fact, it never really left as over the years I’ve developed some ideas for potential stories from time to time but had always kept them at arms length. Years ago, I wanted to be a writer. Since October, I’ve actually been writing on two stories with the intent of turning them into novels.

I’m still moving forward with one of the stories as a potential novel at this point, but I’m also working on turning one of them into a possible screenplay. Being that I haven’t flexed my creative writing muscles in over a decade, I’m practically in uncharted waters here. That means that I need to refocus the majority of my time on creative writing and that means giving up the site that I’ve loved working on for so many years.

I must admit, though, that I’m not actually writing this article to tell my readers why I’m leaving or where I came from. I’m writing this article in order to tell my few consistent readers that I thank you for being there over the years. It has been fun writing for you and I hope, if I ever manage to get any of my stories out there, that you’ll join me in this new, more creative direction that I’m taking.

Like that farm boy on a desert planet in a galaxy far, far away, it’s time for me to head out to the stars and (fingers crossed) embrace my destiny. I’m just thankful that no one had to kill my aunt and uncle to make me do it! So, once again from the bottom of my heart, I say thanks and as always, I’ll see you at the movies!

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