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Showing posts with the label Announcement

Year Nine

Welcome back to Mainlining Christmas. Pull up a chair. Relax. Have a cup of hot chocolate.

We've been meeting up like this for a while now. Nine years and counting - that's a tradition! In that time, we've tried to do our best to keep everything running, to keep the Christmas magic churning out as it always has. Got to save the holidays and all that.

And in some ways, this year will be no different. We'll keep reviewing Christmas movies and specials, we'll keep subjecting ourselves to mind-bending quantities of holiday music... you get the drill.

But, here's the thing: we're not getting any younger. And, partially because of that, things need to change.

That's a long-winded way of saying we're relaxing some of the rules around here. We're dropping the "post every eight hours" gimmick - that was fun at first, but it's gotten a little silly. We'll still have quite a bit to share, but we're dropping the quota, partially becaus…

The Mainlining Christmas Yet to Come

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Like a tree nurtured and grown, another year has been cut down, dragged inside, strung up with bright lights, dried out, and inevitably caught fire. To put it plainly, Christmas 2017 is gone. And with it, we must also bid farewell to another "season" of Mainlining Christmas - the eighth since we started this little experiment in holiday bingeing.

So, then. What now?

In past years, we've vowed we'd be back in more or less the same form (or halfheartedly claimed we were shutting the whole thing down, only to pull a last-minute twist).

This time... I'm not so sure.

I mean, we'll be back in one form or another - we have way too much fun to walk away altogether. But we've been considering a format shift. The rapid-fire of reviews is getting a touch mechanical to write (and I suspect to read, as well).

We enjoyed making the podcast this year - we're planning to put together at least a few more of those. Beyond that, we're still figuring things out. We …

Podcast Episode 1: Back to the Yet to Come

In case you missed the release announcement, this is a quick reminder that our gift to you this season is the pilot episode of the Mainlining Christmas Podcast.



In the first episode, secular holiday nerds Erin and Lindsay get a visit from their own Christmas future, along with a lesson on the true reason for the season (spoiler: it's time travel).

Listen above, or on Soundcloud, Stitcher, or iTunes.

Pieces of media discussed or mentioned:
Back to the Future, Part II (1989)It's a Wonderful Life (1946)A Christmas Carolby Charles Dickens, 1843Quantum Leap: "A Little Miracle" (1990)Blackadder’s Christmas Carol (1988)Real Ghostbusters: "X-Mas Marks the Spot" (1986)Back to the Future: "Dickens of a Christmas" (1991)Saving Santa (2013)Doctor Who: "A Christmas Carol" (2010)Doctor Who: "The Unquiet Dead"  (2005)Doctor Who: "The Doctor, The Widow, and The Wardrobe" (2011)"Christmas Every Day" by William Dean Howells, 1…

Presenting the Mainlining Christmas Podcast

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For the better part of a decade, we've been sifting our way through an endless ocean of yuletide specials and sharing the experience with those of you willing to follow along. Over the years, something odd happened: we started to learn something.

This was unintentional, I assure you.

We started noticing patterns and trends, and we began piecing together theories about the holidays' odd relationship with pop culture, genre, and literature. I'm not sure it's fair to call us "experts," but we certainly developed a rather unique perspective.

But while the blog has been a good forum for reviews and the occasional think piece, it's a poor environment for more in-depth discussion. We wanted to try something new.

And that brings us to The Mainlining Christmas Podcast.

We're working on pushing this out to various podcast outlets, but for now you can listen at Soundcloud. We've got plans for several more episodes, assuming there's interest, though we&#…

It's Time

It starts in March, but it's quiet - so quiet you can only hear it when the wind dies down and you're perfectly still. You don't even notice it until you're trying to fall asleep. A shuffling sound, at most - you can ignore it most nights. Pretend it's not even there. Most of the time it doesn't even cost you sleep. Most of the time.

By June, though, it's grown into an audible scratch. Sometimes you climb into the attic, thinking there must be some injured animal up there. But there's nothing. Nothing but the boxes. And you dare not even look at those, not in the summer.

In September, it's tapping. Knocking. It wants you to notice. It wants you to let it free. But it's still fall, so you try to ignore it.

But now... now it's pounding against the ceiling. Rhythmic, ceaseless. It won't be ignored.

If you left it there... if you did nothing... would it grow louder? Would it continue to build until the pressure was so intense it reduced your…

Christmas is CANCELLED

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So. Everything is awful.

President Elect Meisterburger has pledged to orchestrate a complete and total shutdown of elves entering the country, and the Winter Warlock is heading up his transition team. Once again, Kris Kringle is public enemy number one.

This is as dark as it gets. As cold and bleak and empty. This is the point in the special some kid's supposed to shed a tear and say Christmas is going to be cancelled.

But that's backwards. Christmas isn't supposed to be bright and sunny - it never was. Christmas thrives in this shit. It was born here, in the darkest season, when it seems like the light's gone for good. For millennia, humans have celebrated in order to spite the darkness. We've come together to drive the cold winter away or, barring that, to get drunk on eggnog and exchange sweaters.

And nothing's going to change that. If President Meisterburger starts a war that leaves the planet a radioactive wasteland, we'll crawl out of our sewer sanct…

Now Ends the Reign of Mainlining Christmas

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Sadly, our reign as monarch of Sensible Castle has come to an expected end, so that the next subscriber can claim their three minutes of glory. You should be able to read our proclamations by visiting the Hall of Kings and searching for us.

Now Begins the Reign of Mainlining Christmas

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Well, this is it. The moment we've all been waiting for, when Mainlining Christmas is unambiguously crowned king of Sensible Castle in Ireland. This honor is being bestowed on us by Cards Against Humanity as part of their Eight Sensible Gifts for Hanukkah promotion.

You can celebrate our rule by visiting this site, which features video of our castle. You should be able to see our proclamations here, once they're officially proclamated. What are those proclamations? Hell if I know - we submitted them last winter.

Christmas Presents in July!

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What's Christmas without presents? A bunch of micro-humanoids singing around a tree while floating on a mote of dust through an unforgiving jungle? Screw that! I'm here to make sure your July is merry and bright. And to do that, I'm offering you the chance to download any or all of my books FREE this weekend.

That's right: FREE. Just click on the links below to be whisked off to the magical world of Amazon, where you'll be able to buy my novels for the extremely generous price of $0.00.

I'm practically giving them away! And by practically, I mean literally. And by literally, I mean the official definition of literally prior to 2015, when dictionaries were forced to acknowledge lingual drift meant the term had become synonymous with its antonym, figuratively.

You know, I'm concerned I may be wandering off topic. Here are the damn links:
A Count of Five (The Citadel of the Last Gathering, Book 1)Tide of Ice (The Citadel of the Last Gathering, Book 2)For Love …

A Seasonal Announcement from Mainlining Christmas

YOU WON!

Yes you, you lucky people. What did you win?

MORE CHRISTMAS.

It’s July, and this year we’ve decided that 32 days of holidays in the winter just aren’t enough, so we’re bringing you some special Christmas in July content.

According to Wikipedia, “Christmas in July” has a few different contexts:

First, starting in the 1930s, some American summer camps would hold a special Christmas in July celebration, including decorations, presents, and Santa.

Second, places in the Southern Hemisphere where July is the middle of winter sometimes hold bonus Christmas in July parties to make up for the fact that it’s boiling hot on December 25th.

Third, and perhaps most familiar to us, it’s a lovely excuse for a sale at a time when marketers are stuck in a lull between the Fourth of July and the Back to School season.

We may touch on all these areas, or not. It’s summer, we’re not making too many promises. Maybe we’ll go to the beach and send you pictures of starfish photoshopped onto fir tr…

What's This Under the Tree?

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This is unexpected. There's an extra gift here, and it's addressed to you.


I know we usually wait until Christmas, but it says to open now. We probably shouldn't argue. But what in the world could it be?


It looks like a book. Only... I think there's more here.


I was right! It's a whole bunch of books. In fact, it's ALL MY BOOKS! And you're getting them absolutely free.

Well, the Kindle copies, anyway. Hey, what do you expect - paperbacks don't grow on trees. But, from now through December 26th, you can download free copies of For Love of ChildrenFacsimileA Count of FiveTide of Ice, and Tending the Fire. Get them now; read them later.

And the best part of digital copies is you can keep them and still re-gift them. Just send your friends the links in lieu of a real gift and remind them it's the thought that counts.

Year Six and All’s Well

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It’s that time once more.

I can’t believe this will be the sixth year we’ve held our Christmas here online with all of you. (Please don’t send up six geese a-laying, there’s a no pets clause in our lease.)

We hope you’re looking forward to this as much as we are. We’ve been collecting more music, more movies, specials and episodes, and more randomly holiday-branded baubles and doodads to share with you.

As a refresher for any newcomers, here is our pledge to you:

Between now and Christmas, this blog will update at least three times every day (approximately every eight hours).Erin and I will listen only to Christmas music whenever we are in control of our aural environmentsWe promise to watch at least one Christmas-themed special, episode or movie every dayAs time allows we will experience other holiday activities, such as decorations or events, and report back

In past years, we have also reported the slow and steady fracturing that our psyches take under the onslaught of yuletide. Th…

All Aboard

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The sixth year of Mainlining Christmas is just hours away. Make sure you have your tickets ready.


Self-Promotion: A Count of Five Now Available

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Let me just get this out of the way up front: this doesn't have a damned thing to do with Christmas. The wreath was just a cheap attempt to obfuscate that fact: sorry for the deception.

A Count of Five is my new novel, which is now available on Amazon. You can pick up the Kindle version here for just $2.99, or you can buy a paperback version for $9.99.

This is the first book in The Citadel of the Last Gathering, a new series blending fantasy-adventure, science fiction, and quite a few other surprises. We're planning on releasing the second novel in the series this November.

This represents a lot of work from both me and Lindsay, who edited and laid out the novel. We're extremely proud of the finished product, and hope you'll pick up a copy and give it a read.

Happy Thanksgiving from Mainlining Christmas

We here at Mainlining Christmas would like to wish all of you a
happy and safe Thanksgiving.

The Unveiling

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Remember last year, when I wrote a novel-length collection of short Christmas genre fiction and posted it daily to the blog in December? Well, I enjoyed it so much, I decided I'd rather rip my teeth out with pliers than try to do it again this year.

So if you were hoping to get another twenty-five short stories out of me this December, you're out of luck. I might - MIGHT - write a handful if I get any ideas worth pursuing, but don't expect anywhere near the level of fiction I wrote in 2012. I burned through just about every idea I had, and I don't have the kind of free time this year I had last.
To make it up to all of you, I'm giving away the new e-book version of last year's* collection for a limited time on Smashwords. Now you can take the stories of Mainlining Christmas with you wherever you go. I mean, you could probably do that before, assuming you have a smart phone. The stories are still sitting here on the site, after all.
But then you'd miss out …

So I've Been Thinking....

I know I said I'd see you next year, but that's days away, and... I missed you guys. Besides, I've got something to say.

When we started Mainlining Christmas, Lindsay and I discussed, among other things, what would and would not constitute a "Christmas movie." It's not as easy to delineate as you'd think. Originally, I excluded Die Hard, reasoning that an action movie wasn't a Christmas movie, regardless of when it was set. We went ahead with it this year for a few reasons, not the least of which being that we wanted to watch something good.

But there's more to it than that. As we've covered more and more classics, the line's gotten blurred. Holiday Inn is considered a Christmas classic: hell, it's where the song "White Christmas" originated. But Christmas actually only represents a small portion of the film's time and attention.

The rule of thumb I've been using so far has been that if something feels like it's q…

Repetition

This isn't a full post, but I wanted to mark a milestone. Today is December 12th, 2012, a day of significance to many people. Let me spell it out for you: this is 12/12/2012. Or, to put it another way, today is the 2000th anniversary of 12/12/12, the last repetitive date the Universe ever saw. If anyone claims today's date is repetitive, it's likely because they're unaware that when we drop the 20 from 2012, it's just shorthand.

If that made a difference, we could just start writing dates without the placeholder for ten in the year. Then we'd get repetitive dates all the time. March third, 2013 would be 3/3/3, as would the same day in 2023, 2033, 2043, and so on. Of course, we'd all know it would be BS: dropping a placeholder doesn't mean it doesn't exist: it just means we're lazy.

On an unrelated topic, you've got less than 2 weeks of shopping before Christmas.

Mainlining Christmas Presents: 25 Christmas Eves

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Remember two years ago when I wrote five short stories for the blog in the midst of trying to review dozens of crappy specials and movies, and by the end of it I was almost ready to put my head through a brick wall?

Good times.

But at least my hard work was appreciated. I mean, just check out these enthusiastic quotes about the free compilation I dumped on Smashwords afterward (download yours today!):

Nothing cheery about these Christmas stories. Would not recommend it.
-Anonymous reviewer on Barnes & Noble's website
Though this collection of short stories was better than the other free books/short stories I've purchased on my nook, I still will not say it was very much worth reading.
-Reviewer on Goodreads
If the people want more, who am I to say no? With that in mind, I'm ready to announce something a little special this year. After slacking last year (three stories - really, I am embarrassed), I felt like I owed you a bit more this holiday.

That's why, starting at …