The Rickety Old Shack

Site News

Short Summer Break | June 7th, 2019

It's time for one of my annual excursions into the country, where I'll be almost completely disconnected from the world. (I guess, technically, I could make a phone call if I chose to take a walk, climb a hill and hope to get a bar of cell signal.) Consequently, I'll be missing a really strong UFC 238 fight card. I'll be playing catch-up when I get back into the city late on Sunday, but won't be posting any Pre-Fight Thoughts for the event, and the Fight Notes and Post-Fight Thoughts articles for the main and co-main will be delayed.

Everything should be back to normal by next week. I've got some more album reviews coming, and some other music articles in the works. Some new stuff, some retro content, but updates should keep the same schedule I've maintained over the past few months. As always, I am open to suggestions for things to cover, just send your requests my way — either via email or the Twitters.
Posted by: Derek

The May Update | May 10th, 2019

If you've been paying attention to the music reviews I've been posting for the last month, you'll notice there have been a lot of reviews of older albums. I'm still working on reviews of new releases, but I got inspired by some album anniversaries to start going through my old music and reviewing it. In addition to album reviews, I intend to do some articles about specific genres and bands and expand the types of music content on the site.

There are other projects in the works, but most of them are ~6 months away and my primary concern remains keeping steady updates flowing. Book, movie and TV reviews are still in the works but I find myself getting sidetracked a lot. They're still coming, I promise — I just don't know when.
Posted by: Derek

Shack Blog Offline | April 28th, 2019

I've decided to take down and revamp the site's blog. I was never happy with how bland and generic the updates were. I think I can do a lot better, but I think I'm going to turn it into a blog specific to Magic: The Gathering. I've not made up my mind just yet, because there are downsides to that. If I use Word Press, then all the content is locked away in backups for that platform. The alternative is to build a sub-site with its own scripts for presenting deck lists and card information. A big reason I run a basic, hand-coded website is because I retain complete control of the content without depending on third-party tools and their ongoing maintenance.

I do not know when the blog will be re-launched, and I will most likely be shuttering the site's Instagram because I don't think I'll ever be heavily invested in the platform. I use it to keep track of a few people I know and watch powerlifters do ridiculous things and that's about it. Twitter remains my current social media platform of choice.
Posted by: Derek

General Shack Update | March 15th, 2019

I'm a bit delayed in announcing this, but the changes to the Fight Notes column have been implemented. I will still be writing up some sort of summary for each event I watch, but I have condensed the format and won't be doing a play-by-play style article anymore. The tweaked format took effect in the entry posted for UFC Fight Night 146 (link) and I plan to stick with that for the foreseeable future. As with anything you see on this site, if you have any feedback or suggestions please feel free to pass them along.

I've yet to vary the content from the usual music reviews and MMA articles, largely due to juggling a lot of personal obligations. I've begun posting some old, archived music reviews from this site's old Word Press incarnation. I've got about 6 old reviews left, and then I am pretty certain that I am out of old content that I want to post here. I may stumble across some old .ZIP files, however, so you never know. The fact I found reviews from 2011 was cool, but also another reminder of how old I'm getting. Ah well, c'est la vie. Thanks for reading!
Posted by: Derek

Fight Notes Updated | February 18th, 2019

Thanks to the UFC promptly posting the undercard fights for UFC On ESPN 1, I was able to play catch-up and get the rest of today's Fight Notes article written (link). I will be making an announcement in early March concerning some changes to the MMA content on the site. It's nothing too drastic, and should improve the overall quality of everything — at least, I hope! Stay tuned.
Posted by: Derek

Fight Notes Update | February 17th, 2019

While I am still sorting out the format change for the Fight Notes article series, I will still be doing them. Tonight, however, I am actually tied up with personal committments, and won't be able to catch any of the undercard fights. I'll be looking into my options to watch the fights I missed, but this edition may go up just as a commentary on the main card. I may also evolve the series into exactly that, or possibly just noting the fights of interest. I expect to have a decision made by the first week of March. Thanks for your patience.
Posted by: Derek

Technical Difficulties | January 21st, 2019

My string of exceptionally unfortunate luck continues apace, as my main PC — the one I do 99% of the work for this site on — just fried another video card. I'm going to be out of action for a few days, either cobbling together a temporary replacement PC, or possibly getting the old beast back in action if I can find a spare card lying around somewhere. Luckily, I had written up some older reviews, so I have a bit of content in the bag while I resolve this latest problem. I'll be posting a new music review tomorrow / tonight (EST) and I will see what my plan of action is and will update from there.
Posted by: Derek

Brief MMA Update | January 19th, 2019

As a result of some delays in making changes to the MMA / combat sports articles and archive sections, Fight Notes will remain in its current form for the next little while. I'm still working on the new format; until I settle on something, I'll contine to post the same commentary / recap style of article. I expect no more than 2-3 weeks before I get these changes committed.
Posted by: Derek

State Of The Shack 2019 | January 3rd, 2019

As is always the case, the holidays snuck up on me, felt almost too brief, and are already shrinking in the rear-view mirror. Hopefully everyone reading this had a good final week of 2018, and kicked the new year off on a positive note. The update schedule for The Shack and The Blog will be back to normal by the beginning of next week, and I have a few notes regarding what content to expect this year.

I'm going to be continuing MMA coverage, although I'm changing the format for Fight Notes and possibly re-titling the existing editions. I spent so long writing UFC event recaps, it's practically a compulsive habit at this point. Now, I still intend to do that sort of thing, but I'm going to post them at a much slower pace and have plans for reviewing a lot of older events. I'm looking at writing shorter, pithier notes on fights rather than just describing what happened. The exact changes haven't been finalised, but it will be sorted by January 19th.

TV show, movie and book reviews are coming. I am also going to be writing articles about more than just MMA. The site turns 20 this year, so there's going to be some retrospective content about ye olde Internet. You can also expect some tweaks to the site layout by mid-year.
Posted by: Derek

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