Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Celebrating 20 Years: The Top 10 Posts

The year was 1997, and I had just logged on to the internet. After a few months of cruising around and checking things out, I came up with some big plans. I'd always wanted to be an entertainment writer and own a bookstore, and the internet put those possibilities in front of me.

On the World Wide Web, I could reach an audience that would appreciate my reviews of heavy metal music and fantasy books like the readers of the newspaper that I was writing for at the time never would. Associates programs gave me the opportunity to have a book and music store without a lot of the hassle of actually running a book and music store. It was the perfect storm, so I thought.

That led to the launch of two sites on the old servers, The Hall of the Mountain King (viewable via the Internet Archive), which served as landing page and music site, and The Bookwyrm (also viewable via the Internet Archive), which housed my book content. In my mind, these two sites would eventually become go-to hubs for content on fantasy fiction and heavy metal. As you can see, that didn't work out quite as I'd planned.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Remembering Paul O'Neill (1956-2017)

It’s not often that the passing of someone famous really affects me. When I hear about it, I may think, “Man, that’s a shame,” but I quickly move on. Every now and then, though, someone makes enough of an impact on my life to really hit home. Paul O’Neill is one of those people.

I was incredibly saddened Wednesday night to see a Facebook post from Trans-Siberian Orchestra announcing that Paul had succumbed to a battle with a chronic illness at the too-young age of 61.

I didn’t really know Paul O’Neill personally, but I felt like I did. Not only was he responsible for some of my favorite music ever with both Savatage and TSO, I knew him as a warm and friendly man in several interactions I had with him over the years.