2018 has been a year in which Joel and I have worked exceptionally hard – And I think every single one of you will have had a similar experience. You’ve all likely done something, or something happened to you in this year, which has changed you or changed the way you do something. This year hasn’t exactly been a barrel of laughs all the time, but it’s also not exactly been a bad year for us. I’ve got some fond memories from this year, which I hope to use to propel us as a website, us as a group and even myself as a creator further. Today, we’re just going to share what we think we’ve achieved this year – and hopefully you’ll be as proud of us as we are of the work we’ve put in.
Holy smokes, I knew this year was my fifth year running this blog, but on Wednesday 19th, it was officially the anniversary of the website. Hurrah! No, there’s no time for cake, as I thought that was a perfect excuse for me to chat about everything that’s happened with us. The good, the bad (although there’s not really a lot of ‘bad’) and of course, the outright amazing. All in all, it’s been five years of ups, so expect to see a lot of gushing about how excellent this has been… And hey – We’ll chat about the meetup and what that means to us, as well as future plans.
GeekOut Media is the name we’ve given the collective of GeekOut South-West, GeekOut West-Midlands and our web ventures. We’ve been wanting to bring everything together properly for some time, but it just hasn’t happened as of yet. A massive project to bring it all together is still underway, but until recently, we hit a stumbling point. Now that issue is in the past, it’s time for us to shape our future – and you can help us make it how you’d want it.
GeekOut UK is our brand new website in the making – Something we’ve been working on for a rather long time now. As the release of the new website draws ever closer, we’re going to celebrate by showing all of you some snippets of what can be expected of the new site. Today, we’re going to talk about a topic we covered a long time ago, but this time it takes the form of a badge system.
NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month, is an event that takes place annually in november. The event has been running since 1999 and in that time the company responsible for the event, also called National Novel Writing Month, has become a nonprofit. But what exactly is NaNoWriMo and what can you get out of the event? We’ve written about this event several times, but we’ve never written a sort of primer on how to get involved, or what you need to know. If the idea of writing a novel in a month sounds like a blast, a terrifying prospect, or something you find slightly curious – Then read on, as NaNoWriMo is a beast that should be taken on by all comers!
Most, if not all of us have heard the name WordPress, in fact if you’re here you may notice the words “Blog at WordPress” somewhere near the bottom. It’s been a long-standing tool for bloggers and keen writers to get their work out into the world, and with a bit of careful effort noticed there too. It’s also a fairly functional means of producing a quick and easy website for those of us with only rudimentary programming skills, with a wide selection of modifiable themes and plugins that can be put into play to make your WordPress site stand out from the many millions of other WordPress sites there are out there (about 74.6 million). (more…)
Tirelessly, I’ve been working to bring you new content and this month, most of the content you’ve read by me was written back in December! Surprise! However this was to allow me time to work on our projects for this website and our future as GeekOut South-West.
Me and Joel discussed what we would do for our Happy New Year post, welcoming in 2015 and we decided we’d split up and do a separate post. Once you’ve finished reading my post, please do go check out Jaberwock Joel the Jemmy’s look at the year ahead of us. Yes, I just called Joel a nonsense crowbar because he’s great at bludgeoning the rubbish out of the best of us. Including me, it would seem. To think, I’ve not even begun my new years celebrations yet.
We could have done these posts on New Years Day itself, I mean you’d think that’d be a better way to welcome in the new year, right? But no… We figured we’d look at what was going to be a fantastic year coming up, offering what we’re most looking forward to and what we’re hoping to achieve this year.
My 2015 plans
Let’s begin with the thing that really made GeekOut South-West come into existence: Conventions.
So far, I’ve got 5 conventions in the works for 2015:
London Anime and Gaming Con this February – I’ll be on the reception team, so please do swing by if you’re going to that event and please say hello to me. I’d love to see you there and you should join the Shonen Heroes team, since heck – I am an awesome hero there. Not only this, some of the GeekOut South-West group will be there at London Anime and Gaming Con! Come make yourselves known to us.
After LAGC, I’ll be attending EGX Rezzed with the 1001-Up crew. I’ll be there as a member of press and I’ll make every effort to go and speak to anyone and everyone about upcoming games. Not only this though, I’ll be speaking to the cosplayers of EGX Rezzed and let’s see what I can throw together for my part of the deal. Hurrah for Rezzed!
Next up, I’ve got Kitacon, where I will be joining Joel and many others. Originally Kitacon was going to be available for registration as of January 1st at midday, but they have suffered a technical set-back. Nevermind, the team were diligent enough to tell us in advance that this has been pushed back to Thursday 8th at 18:00. So please do come join in and come meet up with me and
Joel! We’ll… Sign your… Things..? Wait, that’s the silliest idea ever! But do come and make yourselves known to us and chat geek with us!
Then there’s a combination of Cardiff Anime Convention in August and then Bristol Anime Convention in October. I believe I will be the head of the registrations team for the Bristol Anime Convention and I will be on the registrations team again for Cardiff, so please do come and say hello – Yes, GeekOut South-West are officially involved with conventions now! We’re super excited to be bringing some smaller, local conventions to the scene!
Last but certainly not least there’s BristolCon which I intend to take the group to once more. It’s a fantastic experience and I’m considering doing a panel on Sci-Fi and Cosplay. If you can make it to Bristol and this sounds interesting to you, please let me know in the comments below, or if you think there’s a topic I’d be better suited for that should be covered, let me know! I think the local Bristol conventions need to be made aware of the presence of cosplay, why we do it and more importantly: How it can help any/all geeky scenes out there.
What about GeekOut’s plans?
Some of these things I have been keeping close to my chest, so close that maybe even Joel doesn’t know of some of it… So here we go:
One thing about blogging is you have to pay close attention to the demand for your website. Whilst we’re not quite ready yet to be moving to self-hosting, it’s an option that’s ahead of GeekOut South-West. We’re looking towards a bright future, but this means we’ll need to move to our own hosting service. I’m keen to stick to WordPress, but moving away from the WordPress.com platform will be a big leap. We’ll see if we make it there in time next year.
You’d have noticed if you’re a regular reader of this website that we had an advent calendar which wasn’t so spectacular. The original idea was to have windows set up for each and every day, so that every day it would open automatically and show the post behind it. There was no way to do this via our current WordPress hosted server, so if we want to do anything as ambitious as that in future, we’ll seriously need to consider moving to the .org platform.
Anyone who has seen our mobile website will be aware it’s not the prettiest one in the world. It’s pretty ugly. So I’m working on making mobile more optimised and better looking for everyone, as well as looking at potential other avenues for mobile technologies to get involved, perhaps with integrated Meetup features.
I’ll keep everyone informed as to what’s happening, of course!
Yep, this one was a given, but it’s important to note that we’ll be keeping our posting schedule up as hard and as fast as we have been. We believe geek culture has so much to discuss, so we want to chat about it all! We also wouldn’t mind getting more people guest posting for us, much like our friend Kevin Kutlesa has. Please do get involved if you feel you have an article that you want a platform to launch off of!
Also, do note: I’ll be doing a return soon. More on that later in the week.
What are your plans for the new year? Any resolutions that you have made? Anything particularly geeky that you’re interested in this coming year? As always, please comment below and remember to check out Joel’s New Years post!