Thanks, Melinda. Over the years, I’ve had all sorts of people offer all sorts of things in the way creating content for the site, but my sense is readers like the consistent tone of what goes on here, and I’ve been able to control that by being the majority writer and sole editor. I am hesitant to relinquish control, moreover I do enjoy overseeing the blog and knowing it puts out quality content for free, no advertisements, a counteractive to balance out other outfits who are much more about profiteering, etc.
Site traffic has always been strong with over 1M unique visits and 2M page views within the first 2 years, then averaging 1.25M UVs and 2.5M page views pretty much since then. With the switch to Medium, traffic is up and the site is on target to hit 1.4–1.5M and 2.5M+ respectively in 2017. In fact, if you set aside Google search “screenwriting”, GITS is the #1 most visited screenwriting site on the web.
You are right, participation in comments pales by comparison. My sense is that people don’t need that type of engagement as much or at least have come to see GITS as more of an information site, less about community. Perhaps part of that is I don’t give enough time to push that type of connectivity. Frankly I’m not sure that’s part of my current goal or even interest. What does interest me is to do more movie analysis, script analysis, reflections on story, the business and craft of screenwriting.
In that regard, I think the approach I preach and teach, what I call Character Based Screenwriting, has value in a public forum. I know for a fact from teaching it, it can be a powerful motivator to help writers move beyond plot-oriented and formulaic thinking about story structure into a more direct engagement with characters out of which plot emerges.
Those type of interests, driven by my own curiosity to delve more deeply into what that all means and how best to understand ways to write from character, align with my academic path. So maybe what my gut is trying to tell me is to merge those interests, use the daily and weekly process of blogging to — at least in part — explore that content more fully.
Character archetypes. Grounding the physical journey of a story in the psychological journey. Exploring the organic connectivity of all the story’s characters as they service the Protagonist’s transformation journey. Even looking to see what else Carl Jung can bring to bear on the conversation as I do — half jokingly — think he is the most valuable screenwriting ‘guru’ around.
Anyway I just allowed myself to do a bit of mind-wandering in response to your comment, Melinda, hope you don’t mind. As I noted in a previous response, ideally I’d like to hit a balance point, a sweet spot wherein I continue to provide content which GITS readers find valuable combined with me winnowing down that content so it’s more about what I find exciting and of interest, and less about hitting 6 posts per day (for example).
More to come in the next few weeks. Thanks as always for your contributions and feedback.