When we started All Things Horror back in 2009, I had the idea that it would be an excuse to talk about some of the movies I loved with my friends, and if a few people here and there read the site, then it would be a success. The site quickly evolved into something different. Thanks to the support of Michael Hein and the NYC Horror Film Festival, we were able to experience some of the best works that independent horror had to offer. For me, it was like getting that mix tape in high school from a friend that had Bad Brains, Bad Religion, Minor Threat and Black Flag on it all over again. I knew the direction I wanted to take the site in, and over the past six years we've made it our goal to bring as much exposure to the smaller, more personal and far more terrifying horror films than the standard big studio fare.
On top of that, we've been lucky enough to develop a fantastic relationship with the Somerville Theater. For five years we were able to bring some fantastic movies to the Boston area long before they made their way to theaters, DVD or VOD. We were able to pack houses for Spring, The Battery, American Mary, Stomping Ground, Soulmate, Dys, Dawning, Absentia, Dead Hooker in a Trunk, Satan Hates You among the fifty feature films and hundreds of shorts we screened from 2010 through 2015. We were fortunate enough to partner with Heidi and Staci of the Etheria organization and for four years we were able to help spotlight some of the up and coming female talents across a number of genres: horror, science fiction, fantasy and action.
We've strived to bring you the best that festivals have to offer through our site, and I would put our coverage up against sites with far more resources and better staffed than us and say we come out ahead. From every Fantastic Fest since 2012, to the Fantasia International Film Festival, Toronto After Dark, the Boston Underground Film Festival, The Stanley Film Festival and even Sundance, we've been fortunate enough to cover some spectacular events. Through the site I've been lucky enough to serve as a host of The Telluride Horror Show for three years running, and I can tell you that without a doubt, heading into those mountains marks the best week of the year for me.
All that said, for the past month, writing for the site has been a struggle. That feeling of joy that used to come with opening my inbox has curdled into something I don't like. “Dread” would be too strong a word, but lately it's been with a lot of resignation that I've gone through my my emails and struggled to find something worth writing about. That's not meant as a reflection on the films we're seeing, but more of a total burnout on my part. I still love horror, but spending seven years of watching and writing about it-to some extent almost exclusively-it feels like it's time for a new direction.
By spring time All Things Horror won't be All Things Horror any longer. While I'd be stunned if horror coverage consists of less than fifty percent of what we write about, I made the decision a while back to retool and rebrand the site. It's been a long time in the works, and part of the impetus to mention it now rather than wait until the final design has been completed is to give myself a quick in the seat of the pants to get over the last of the hurdles and launch the damn thing. In the meantime, don't be surprised to see films that fall outside the range of straight horror cinema to appear with more regularity. We're still going to cover the most badass cinema we can get our greedy mitts on. We're still going to work on bringing you the best festival coverage we can. But if you turn to our site and start seeing a greater emphasis on action, marital arts, science fiction, foreign thrillers and surrealist fare, my hope is the quality of writing sucks you in and keeps you coming back for more rather than firing off a “What does this have to do with horror?” comment before dismissing us for good.
I'm really proud of our site and what we've accomplished since its inception. From working with Chris Hallock at its start (a guy whose talent is only surpassed by his kindness) to meeting and making some my closest friends, to working with an extraordinary team of writers (and it should be noted that Dede pulls double duty by keeping these organized, promoted and making sure my ass doesn't fall too far behind).
We're going to be around a long time. I could no sooner kill of the site than I could snuff out one of the cats with a pillow. What I'm hoping to do is broaden my own horizons ans a writer and step outside of my comfort zone. We're looking for more director retrospectives, a more consistent podcast and multimedia presence and a break from the review/news rut I've fallen into the past year or so with some more long form critiques. It's going to be a bit of a bumpy journey, but I know we'll get there. Here's hoping you guys stick around for the ride.