This has been one heck of an interesting week.  Between all the new features, podcasts, and the site going down on Friday, I’ve come to realize it isn’t the big picture, but the little things that add up to something great.

Just when you least expect it, you decide to launch a website

When Major Spoilers launched on July 3, 2006, I had hopes that the site would reach epic proportions within two years.  While it hasn’t made it there yet, the small jumps we’ve experienced are due in part to two things; 1) you the dedicated Major Spoilerites who have spread the word, and 2) a bunch of chance encounters that add value to the site that get you to return and be part of the complete Major Spoilers Experience.  Matthew stumbled back into my life after 10 years by pure chance. Stacy B. stepped up to the plate to deliver the goods, and Victoria brings a different perspective to this whole thing we call pop culture.  I’m always blown away when someone new contacts me offering to write for the site. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but when it clicks, it clicks really well.  Which reminds me, if you think you want to play in our playground, you know how to contact me.

Just when you least expect it, you get positive feedback

When I look at the logs and see the countries and cities everyone is coming from, and when we receive letters from readers around the world, it really encourages us to do our best.    I know there are some weeks when life gets in the way (I could tell you some stories of our crew and the troubles we’ve seen), and the content you are expecting to be there isn’t, but these words of encouragement always spark us to do better.

Just when you least expect it, you get promoted

Six months ago I was promoted at work – my real job. The promotion has me working longer on reports that are written and turned in, then a week later I’m writing another report that asks for the exact same information but in a different format.  It’s maddening, really. For someone that has been working with database driven websites for right on 9 years now, these reports could be generated any number of ways, if only the content was entered into a database.  Since I’ve been working with database driven websites (or CMS as the hipsters are all calling it these days) for so long, I’m still a little surprised when people don’t understand the joy of databases.  It’s the slow exposure and buildup to content management systems that makes Major Spoilers work so well. Over the years, I’ve added new features to the site, because I understand how information can be accessed in a number or way, and served up in a way most users want.  I hope that you, Dear Reader, are finding it easier to access the information you are seeking.

Just when you least expect it, Critical Hit becomes a hit

If you don’t know the story by now, Critical HIt: A Dungeons and Dragons podcast came about through a series of random discussions as Rodrigo tempted me into the world of Dungeons and Dragons.  When we launched the first arc, none of us really expected the show to be successful, and yet the show has become the most popular show that we produce (and I produce six of them weekly). I think that goes for a lot of things in life.  When you really want something to happen and you dwell and focus on it all the time, you’ll never get the results you want, yet when you forget about it and let things happen naturally, it’s a nice surprise when things go your way.  I’ve seen this happen with site traffic, weight loss goals, income, and more.  I think if more people would just let things go and not dwell on that which does not matter, we’d all be a little less uptight.

Just when you least expect it, you realize you need an ad sales manager

As much as we want to control everything in our sphere of influence, there are times when we all need to realize that we can either focus on controlling everything and do an okay job with everything, or we can seek assistance from those that are experts in their areas, thus allowing you to focus on what you are good at.

Just when you least expect it, some free time opens up

I don’t want to be the guy that talks about his five jobs, but I work five different jobs (administrator, instructor, author, executive producer/creator of Major Spoilers, and tech reporter).  It means I have a lot of balls up in the air at any one time, but just when I least expect it I find that I have a few hours of free time.  The unfortunate thing I’ve come to realize is that free time means I’m forgetting something important, and it causes me no end of frustration as I scramble to catch up.  I think I’m getting better in realizing that if I have time to lean, then I have time to work on generating more content for Major Spoilers.  And even though I’m up well past my bedtime, i think the changes are going to be something you like.

Just when you least expect it, the site goes down

I hate it when the site goes down.  Sometimes it is the fault of the person who runs the site (me), but more often than not it’s some weird bug in a new feature I’m implementing on the site to improve performance.  Isn’t it ironic, don’t you think?  These downtimes most often occur when I have stepped away from computer to spend time with the family, or take a break to rest the eyes.  Yes, when I least expect it.

The good news is, we have really good support, and when the error is discovered our support team gets crackin’ and usually has things resolved within the hour.

Just when you least expect it, you decide to learn to play the ukulele

I haven’t mentioned it in a couple of months, but I am nearing the completion of self-teaching myself to play the ukulele. (Is that a sixth job?) Why with all the other things I have going on would I want to pick up an instrument I’ve never played before and want to spend hours  a week strumming away?  While spending time with family and friends is wonderful, I find playing the uke very relaxing.  As I learn the chords, the strums, and the songs, it has a way of changing the way I look at the world.

Music has a lot of emotion to it, and when I really get into playing a song (wait ‘til you hear my rendition of Row-Row-Your-Boat), negative emotions pour out, leaving room for positive energy and thoughts. It’s refreshing really, and I’ve found that practicing at 1:00 AM cleans away the woes of the day, and gets me jazzed.  Following a regular round of practice I find my energies redirected to more positive things, and wanting to create content for the site.  When the site is down, or when one of the Major Spoilers’ podcasts are uploading, I spend a few minutes strumming the four string, and I find my anger directed at the universe dissipates.  The uke is the fourth musical instrument I’ve learned to play over the years.  I think I’ll take up clarinet next.

Just when you least expect it, everything gets better

So what do all of these ramblings have to do with anything?  While I’m using this space to burn off some energy and rid the mind of thoughts, I’ve also come to realize that little by little all of these things have had a positive effect on Major Spoilers.  Major Spoilers isn’t the result of one big event, but all the little things, the events, the random occurrences in time, the self reflection, and minor adjustments that add up over time.  Today, we’re doing more than ever before, and with a great support group, in both the team and you the reader, we’re poised to do even more great things in the coming months.

I’ll leave it there. I’ve used up way more space than I wanted to, and if you made it this far, then thank you.  I’ll be back next month with more random thoughts.  Next week, it’s Matthew’s turn to throw out his ideas.

The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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  1. hectorbustnuts
    March 6, 2010 at 2:11 am — Reply

    I’ve got to say, that I’m loving this site.

    Clean, simple, with a metric arse-load of info AND love for said info. This site’s less about finding a news-story and slapping it up because it’s news…it’s because it’s news that gets a Geek’s juices flowing!

    I’m one of those readers that stumbled upon the site googling some comic or another…but once I found it, I bookmarked and visit every (or nearly every) day.

    Reviews are always solid, with structured reasoning behind the final thoughts, and useless (but awesome!) links like this week’s LEGO “Star Wars Unleashed” are a welcome break from press releases from the big publishing houses.

    And you give the little guys a fair go! Zenoscope and Red 5 are usually overlooked…but it’s great to see some “Grimm’s” and “Atomic Robo” love flying around!

    So, yeah…

    Great site, guys! Keep it up. You really do do some great work here.

    Love from Australia,

    Hector Bustnuts, Esq.

  2. March 6, 2010 at 3:46 am — Reply

    Just when you least expect it, the Spanish Inquisition arrives.

    Because nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition.

    • Ivdar
      March 6, 2010 at 6:39 am — Reply

      Our chief weapon is suprise. And comic books…comics, suprise, our two weapons are comics and surprise. And ruthless reviews…our three weapons are comics, surprise and ruthless reviews, and an almost fanatical devotion to Stephen, our FOUR…

      I’ll come in again, just to say thanks for sharing your thoughts, Stephen, it really makes me feel part of the MSP experience, seeing what goes on behind the scenes. And keep up the great work, we’re all behind you !

      Now curious to read thoughts from the rest of the crew…

  3. Slappy
    March 6, 2010 at 7:11 am — Reply

    One of those things that you did not comment on is chemistry.
    As a musician and teacher, I have worked with some great musicians and accomplished little. I have also worked with inferior musicians and created great music.
    The je ne sais quoi the Major Spoilers team on the podcast and on the site is complimentary. You can not create that. It is there or it is not.

  4. Brother129
    March 6, 2010 at 7:35 am — Reply

    This site is by far my favorite playground…:)

  5. Navarre
    March 6, 2010 at 9:04 am — Reply

    Waking up to Major Spoilers each day is like knowing you get to see your best friend.

    And (6 months too late) congratulations on your promotion, Stephen. :-)

  6. astrodinosaurus
    March 6, 2010 at 9:19 am — Reply

    I recently trimmed my bookmarks. And now I only get my geek-news from Wired, Io9 and Major Spoilers…Dude you guys are up there.

  7. SpiderLover
    March 6, 2010 at 12:37 pm — Reply

    I found critical hit about a month or so ago. The Major Spoilers crew got me back into playing Dungeons and Dragons. As I was listening along you happened to mention the other podcasts, and I went back to my love for comics.

    The first time ever in my life I actually have a pull list. These things your crew creates is like me hanging out with my friends discussing things I love. I look forward to every podcast. I now visit your site daily.

    Thank you Major Spoilers Team.

  8. vistapa
    March 6, 2010 at 7:26 pm — Reply

    love the site and really appreciate the work behind it, i stumble upon the site strangely enough to the dictionary of terms that use to be somewhere on the site (tom welling prime punch) when it was down, at the end of season 1 if you like, and ever since i been coming back one or twice a day. furthermore the MSP was the first podcast downloaded to my iphone and eventually become a fan of all the podcast you produce, well all but the secret one, still haven’t found it.
    So Thanks Stephen, Rodrigo and Matthew for all the hard work and time, because your love for comics, D&D and tech have reinvigorate mine

  9. Mike Keller
    March 6, 2010 at 7:45 pm — Reply

    I was web surfing for something one day, and ran across this page. I didn’t normally visit geeky comic book pages, but the flavor of this one really caught my eye. After a few visits I put the icon on my desktop (April 25th, 2008), next to the one for Whedonesque. I’ve enjoyed it ever since, and I love the comments from everyone.

    It’s my morning paper. :n)

  10. Brian
    March 7, 2010 at 9:48 pm — Reply

    You know … i gotta admit. Before Victoria started writing here, i only knew of this site as the “other” link in search engines when i looked up comics. I used to go to another site for my info. But since that time, I no long go anywhere but here and the publishers websites. This is my place. I’m trying (recently) to take a more active role in commenting on articles too. I really love this website and hope it grows to great heights. :)

  11. Hunter Dan
    March 8, 2010 at 3:21 am — Reply

    Let me say WOO YAY! from down under!

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