Lost and found

I have been reading only a few blogs about anime this past half year. That amounts to quite some time, but then again, I have had to experience a terrible first semester which left me no time for exploration. Indeed, the experience of a bad semester left me little room for expansion of my perceptions as well as the explorations of others, but it gave me a lot of time to reflect and to ponder primarily why I was not what I used to be, which became the source of mostly introspective and reflective posts. I often looked inward, not outward, and although I had an unlimited source where I could cull my thoughts, I believed I was trapping myself within me, like what Japan did before the 1900s. True, it gave the nation the improvement and solidarity that it sought, but it also blinded them from knowing their bounds. I guess the similar thing was happening to me. I did not know where my limits were as a person, and as an avid fan I limited myself to only my own value judgments with regard to the anime I watched.

I believe in myself, who believes in himself

It was a good thing I stopped entrenching myself within the shell I created. I started reading more anime blogs than the usual ones I read, and frankly the only blog I read with consistency these past six months was RyanA’s AloeDream. I appreciate his friendly demeanor towards me as well as his lighthearted (and this I mean in a positive manner) way of blogging.

The reward was instantaneous. Just this morning, I read a meta-blogging attempt by Jeff, and the insights I gained from the short post of his was outstanding. Reading his introduction reminded me of my old days in WordPress where I had an average of twenty comments each summary post of Ergo Proxy I wrote, and visitors of at least a thousand a day. I stopped writing about Ergo Proxy because the anime came to a point where it was almost incomprehensible as well as very boring. On a personal level, I could not do summary posts even on a weekly basis: the action tired me too much. Blogging was supposed to be a catharsis, but writing those seemed to me as chores. I stopped, and so my traffic suffered.

Nowadays, I write primarily what I want, and when I am in the right mind I tend to think writing about media in general, with anime as a focal point. Otherwise, my lows would reflect the times when all I would write about were updates about what happened to me. A writer fails to remain a writer if he is not read; to remain as one, I had to remind what faithful readers remained that I was alright but struggling through school.

I appreciate comments more than visits, though. I guess I will not mind if only twenty people a day visit my blog as long as they add something to my posts, which double as springboards to discussion. I truly appreciate those who have written comments in my posts (whether coerced or not) because they allow discussion to proceed and intellect to foment (I am getting fond of this word nowadays).

I guess Jeff and I have reached the same conclusion: we have to post more. This was no attempt at meta-blogging, but I guess reflections on a meta-blog post end up as meta-blogging anyways.

5 Responses to “Lost and found”

  1. Kljigen Says:

    It is better to write what you want to write rather than writing what you have to write. To me, I enjoy reading normal post about anime rather than episode summaries. Episode summaries could be done by anyone and would more or less be the same but thoughts about an episode or rather post about things that are related to anime in some other way are always more entertaining to me since everyone would have different opinion. Posting about stuff related to anime also allows me to know more about the whole market and its development or trivia that are interesting rather than reading episode summaries. If i have the time to read an episode summary, i rather watch the episode myself since i will definately have different thoughts and comments than the person who wrote the post.

    IMO, You don’t have to increase the amount you write. It is the quality that matters, not the quantity. Although the more you write and the wider variety of topics you write about, you attract more readers but in the end are you content with it? Are you forcing yourself to think up of something? If that happens, I suggest that you cut down on the amount of post. The important thing is, as long as you are happy with it, its good.

  2. Ryan A Says:

    Hey! Thank you Michael. I have to say this blog is one of the few where I try to read every post, though I pay attention to nearly every blog on my blogroll (aggregated with RSSOwl). The problem is, that most posts I see in the reader are episodic, and usually on a series I’m not following or I’ve not viewed the specific episode.

    I agree with Kljigen’s statement about quality vs quantity. Though, I think posts that are going to stand alone for months should be able to withstand time; still be relevant or useful within a year. Even if the post can do that, it still must battle commenter psychology [or implement a new feedback method].

    There is this vibe around blogs that makes it seems a bit awkward to comment on posts older than a month, especially when there’s been commenting in the first few days of posting. I guess it is the idea that blogging has an “in-the-moment” feel to it, and commenting on a post that is 8 months old may be strange for the commenter. At least with traditional animeblogging (episode summaries), that is the feeling I get (could just be me).

    I’ve read posts on series I’d be watching way out of season, but 90% of the time I wasn’t going to leave a comment even if the blogger made a good point. Usually (definitely not always), episodic posts have a trivial nature when the “moment” has passed.

    The implementation for blog feedback I mentioned is something like a “Visited”, “No Comment”, or “I’ve Read This” button. I don’t know how to use site statistics or even enable them (too lazy), so someone like me would enjoy seeing:

    2 comments, 4 no comments. 🙂

    I should probably make this short, but I also have to say that the commenting interaction of WordPress is somewhat disconnected. Commenter leaves a comment, someone replies, but the original commenter doesn’t receive an email about the reply? One thing I’ve seen on sites like digg is that comment replies are useful. Maybe there is a tool to do this, but why is it not embedded in WordPress?

    Okay sorry for the length. Stimulating entry!
    Cheers Mike! 🙂

  3. meganeshounen Says:

    And.. this is probably one of the reasons why I asked you “why do you blog?” the other day. 🙂

    I bet lots of bloggers started out to simply voice out their opinions on anime-related topics such as weekly synopses and special events. After a while, and perhaps bloggers have gained a bit of popularity (from anything they’ve done, whether good or bad), they started to cater to more and more niches, and/or specialize in certain fields. (See: tj_han’s post on “Otaku Subspecies”)

    Still, if blogging goes too far, as such that you start losing time for RL and stuff, that’s the point where you’re supposed to say “okay, enough of this”. Or so I think. I remember the commotion that happened during the time that Omni said that he was going to stop from blogging… I guess his blog was pretty much well loved(?). And probably because Omni’s blog was pretty informative about the recent shows (and still is, imho). I just wonder what would happen if Shingo (Heisei Democracy) or Danny (DannyChoo) decide to take a break….

    Also, have the usual complementary ROW ROW FIGHT DA POWAH from the TTGL OST. 😀

  4. Cameron Says:

    Honestly, I’m pretty new to the whole blogging thing, but I have to agree with other commenters that you should write what you want. I mean I don’t really like reading episode summaries on series that I don’t really have a chance to watch.

    And… I’m just repeating other people. I’m sure you get it.

  5. Totali Says:

    This really goes along with all the “what keeps you going” type of thing that happens on a regular basis with most bloggers. It’s funny that most get spoiled when everyone started with 0 comments and very few viewers. I still call myself fairly new, but I really keep the mindset that I am writing for myself. I really don’t mind if a post has not received any comments, because I originally started my blog as my own kind of journal. I do write a summary type blog (cows ftw? T.T), but I am more concerned with the conversations that happen elsewhere around the community.

    As far as comments go, I think that the style of blog probably makes a difference. Most anime blog readers are looking for quick fun in the form of episodic blogs, or occasional editorials. I visit quite a few blogs (this being one of them) on a fairly frequent basis, but I don’t always feel like I have something worth saying. Yes, every blogger has their niche, but readers also follow different niches. Maybe I just always feel like I am in the reader’s shoes because I do consider myself more of an anime blog reader than writer. As far as increasing commentary, I would definitely say that interacting more with the rest of the community would help with exposure and feedback. You shouldn’t force yourself to write though. Some of the blogs I read hardly ever update, but I still love it when they have a quality post to read.

    I agree with Ryan A about feeling silly about posting on content that is a bit older as well. Even if something is only a week old, I sometimes feel that everything has already been said, or the writer is already done with the subject. Especially with a journal type blog like this (the other one I read probably being ad2225), I just don’t usually feel like I have anything worth to add. For example, I really had to try to pump this comment out…..and I don’t know if I a even making sense xD. It’s just an atmosphere thing…or something. Just have fun blogging, and don’t worry about the non existent pressure or expectations.

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