I’ve written this message two or three times already, so I’ll keep it short and as pain-free as possible. If you want to know more, I’ve included parts from the relevant emails below.
So here it is: The Movielicious and The Phileas Club are going on indeterminate hiatus, and likely won’t be coming back. I have loved and still love both shows (and the wonderful hosts) a whole damn much; one is some of the most fun I’ve ever had, and one is some of the most interesting discussions I’ve ever had. And I have loved and still love the communities that have formed around these “daring” endeavors even more. To all of you reading this; if I could kiss you right now, I honestly would. Like, full on. Even the guys. Just as an unwanted thank you.
But still, with many things to take into account, I have made the decision that I needed to take a breather somewhere, and that’s the only place I could find room. And hey, three and four years aren’t bad runs, right? We’ll always have the memories (some silly, some horrific, some fascinating), and if I ever find a way to bend the space-time continuum to get more hours out of a day, I’ll seriously consider resurrecting the shows. In the mean time, you’ll be able to find all episodes in RSS and iTunes form, hopefully forever.
There are two things this doesn’t mean though:
- It doesn’t mean this was a wanted or easy decision. Far from it. Tears might even have been shed, but it’s ok cause I’m French and love chick flicks anyway. Also, I said “maybe”, alright? “Maybe” means it’s not for sure. There might have not been any tears at all for all you know, so quit harassing me.
- It doesn’t mean I’m “retiring”. Probably the opposite in fact. First, I’m still doing my French shows (hey, a chance to learn a new language!), second I’m still happy to guest on any show that will have me (guesting is way easier than producing), and third, down the line it’ll hopefully give me more time to write blog articles, do videos, create silly one off things, etc.
So there you go; as promised, below is the long version. Hugs to all!
Portion of the email I sent Nicole, Turpster and Kichelle:
I’ve been feeling it for a while, but that incident was a wake up call: I think I’m doing too much (and I’m not 20 anymore), and I think I need to slow down, at least for a bit. I’ve been having small health issues for a few months, and I’m starting to think they are at least partly stress related; this was the straw that broke the camel’s back (I’m the camel in that metaphor), so I took a long hard look at everything I was doing and I came to the conclusion that I had to cut down on some of it.
Between my “real” job and the shows I produce, I only have a couple of hours left in the day where I’m not working or sleeping, and I’m finally realizing this probably isn’t sustainable, or healthy, in the long term. I’ve been doing it for three years and I’ve been really good (adamant in fact) about missing as little shows as possible, even when it was painful or difficult or just plain silly (doing the Movielicious when my back was broken was completely idiotic, I now realize). I keep thinking that the shows are only a couple of hours a month, but they’re really not; as you know there’s a lot of preparation / pre-production / post-production / editing / publishing that goes into it as well. It might be better if I only had to show up (like “lazy T” does), but I’m not even sure it be would at this stage. I thought I could do it forever, but it might be a good idea to take a break on some of those things before it’s “too late”: I’ve always thought those things were silly, but now I believe my body might be “telling” me to slow down before something really bad happens.
I’ll cut it short: I think I’m going to put production of The Movielicious and The Phileas Club on indeterminate hiatus. I’m thinking at least until the end of the year to see how things go, but possibly longer. You guys know how much I love these shows and how big a part of my life they have become (especially since I don’t have as much contact with the English podcasting community, and you two specifically, since I stopped my WoW shows), so you’ll know that it’s absolutely killing to even be thinking about this. It’s like leaving The Instance and How I WoW all over again… I feel like it is abandoning a part of me which I don’t want to lose, it’s honestly very painful. So I haven’t taken the decision yet, but I’m leaning towards it and wanted to let you know, and get your feeling on it.
Note: Nicole briefly considered taking over production of the show (which I was all for), but ended up deciding against it after discussing with Mark: “the show is all of us or not at all” (I’m paraphrasing). I was touched.
Portion of the email sent to the main Phileas Club co-hosts:
So I’ve been presented with an impossible dilemma: you all know I’m sure how much I love all my shows, the passion that drives me and the enjoyment I get out of being part of the community. I’ve been deeply committed to each one, and I’ve been incredibly proud to be able to contribute, in my modest way, to our world of podcasting. So when the time comes to make a choice in what to step back from, you can imagine that it is quite painful. My “real job” is of course a no-go, you know, ‘coz I gotz bills to pay. My French shows are an important part of our NoWatch.net initiative, and have a larger impact on those efforts. And my English shows allow me to be part of a community that I love beyond words, and which has honestly changed my life since I joined it in 2006. Three years ago I’ve had to give up one of my favorite things in the world (being part of the public WoW community), and I coulnd’t imagine letting go of more of it.
Yet I have little choice: I know that I have to let go of *something*, and The Movielicious and The Phileas Club are the “lowest hanging fruits”. It’s been an incredibly painful few days for me, trying to finally come to accept that decision. I’ve had to remind myself many times that while soldiering on is good and courageous, I should also be concerned with what’s at play in the long run. If it wasn’t for that, I swear I would be doing even more than I am doing now. I have ideas for shows that I’ve wanted to do for years, and it makes me truly sad that I’m having to cut back even more… But as I said, I feel I have to.
Now for the ridiculously emotional part (for me): The Phileas Club has been around for over four years now (I had to check, I can’t believe it’s been that long). During that time it has been my immense privilege and honor to work with all of you and many more people whom I have an enormous respect for. I’m very very very proud of what we have accomplished together, realizing the vision of the show by showing that fundamentally different opinions can be discussed rationally and that different cultures can enrich, rather than antagonize, one another. And most of all, that important matters can be fun and interesting at the same time, and that “the news” doesn’t have to be a chore. For all of that, and for allowing me to bring this vision to life, I want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart. This show, I think, has something really special, and even if it never comes back I’d like to think we can all be proud it.