Hello Everyone, welcome to my second blog anniversary. Two years ago from today was when I posted my first blog post. This one in fact. It hasn’t gotten any views since that day, but it is a completely accurate post about how I got into anime in the first place. A post that really shows that I may have been spent too much of my time watching anime for too many years. (NAH). But in all seriousness, I now have about one hundred and sixty hours of anime watchage logged into my MAL profile. I know that isn’t the largest amount of anime that has ever been watched and I bet that many of you have watched a lot more, but it’s amazing to me. In a way, that’s going to be the theme of this post. Things that are amazing to me, but might be ordinary to some one else. Or the reverse. Depends on who you are.
A Year in the life of Scott
Before I dig into my blog, I am going to focus on me first. I can’t say this for the rest of the world, especially the United States, but it’s been a good year for me. A lot of things that I have done feel cyclical, especially since I work a manufacturing type job and one day can almost be the same as the next. Still, I was able to complete the three classes that I wanted to this year. Not only complete them, but achieve a 3.4 gpa with all three of them over the course of this year.
This may not sound like much, but I took a break from graduate school two and half years ago. That reason being that my life went out of control and all I was doing was being stubborn to let go until I was given clear signs that I was not doing well enough to continue. A lot happened during that time like how my brother passed away suddenly along with some grandparents that I loved and held dear to me. Finishing my first class with a 3.2 gpa told me that “yes, I can do this. I can go back to grad school and kick ass”. Then I did even better with the next one with a 3.4. Finally, I finished up my latest class with a 3.5. Through a scientific measurement of three samples, I think that I am finally ready to go back to school in fulltime and finish off this degree. I couldn’t be happier with that. That Masters in Aerospace Degree will be mine by the end of this year. I can taste it. It’ll only take one semester, which’ll be in August and then I’ll be done. Could not be happier about that.
The best part was that I was able to balance my education with so many other things that I had going on. I worked 40+ hours a week, played trumpet in a community band, somehow made it to the gym at a regular schedule, found time to watch anime, tv shows, movies, and some how blog. I don’t know about you or anyone else, but I like being busy. Always having something to do makes my life feel fulfilling to me and having multiple creative outlets helps me deal with a lot of the day to day stress from work. I feel like I’ve achieved a lot of things in each one of my hobbies. This brings me to one other achievements for this year. Playing some instrumental solos.
I’ve played trumpet a few times this at my Church last year, because my musical director likes me for some reason. There were some services like Easter, Reformation Sunday, and Christmas a week ago that I played and added extra flayer to some songs while other people are singing. Playing while other people are focused on something else is one thing. Playing while you and maybe a piano player are playing is something else entirely. Somehow, I was able to play two solos during the summer and they sounded alright to me. Far from flawless, but good enough to sound like I knew what I was doing. Considering that this is something that I haven’t done in years, I am just glad that I got through both of them. Especially since one of these performances had our local bishop in attendance. Talk about pressure. All in all, a year of great personal achievements for me.
This was a great year in blogging too. I could easily site the growth from barely over one hundred followers a year ago to almost four hundred by the time of this blog as a measure of success, but I am only going to partially say so. It’s a big deal since my blog seems to be having some traction in the online community. I mean, I’ve gotten to the point that even days that I don’t have anything new still have a lot more views then I did a year ago. If that isn’t a measure of success, then I don’t know what is. Look at the stats provided below and tell that isn’t something to be proud of? I know that I am. Are you sure that you guys haven’t found the wrong blog? You can always unfollow now if you want.
Still, that’s only a partial success for me. Not just because I’ve seen other bloggers gain followers a lot faster then I am in a shorter amount of time (you know who you are), but because of other reasons. There are some blogs out there that post everyday with consistently great content and I don’t hold a candle to them. I feel a little jealous about that, but I know that blogging isn’t all about stats. Each blog grows at a different rate. So what if my blog stats grow at a slower rate then other people? That doesn’t bother me in the end at all. It’s how I feel about my blog and, despite some shaky posts that I am not too proud of, I really do like the content that I am posting. Each post is true to how I feel about whatever show or topic I am writing about and somehow getting that across to people who are interested in what I have to say is the true achievement here. Thank you all for reading what I have to say. It means so much to me.
I feel like I found my grove on how I want to write posts this time around. I like the three day a week schedule that I have been going on for over a few months and I want to continue to it for as long as I can. I also found something strange that I didn’t consider doing last year. Episodic reviews. That started with Kino’s Journey (2017) and now I am doing it to continue my Space Battleship Yamato 2199 blog watch with DerekL. If I do this more in the future, then I am only going to do one show a season. That way, they don’t over take the rest of the content that I want to blog about. Episodic reviews are the kind of posts that made me put my blog work into a schedule and I am glad that happened.
The weakest part of scheduling posts is the fact that they feel a little manufactured. When I schedule things ahead of time, I had a habit of sometimes forgetting a lot about what I’ve written. I think most of what I’ve written turned out ok and sometimes great, but there are some bad posts that slip through the cracks from time to time. I really need to hire some kind of Quality Assurance guy or something. That way I can make sure the product/posts I put out all turn out to be good.
Then there are the other types of post that I found out how I want to do them. Reviews. Starting with Wolf’s Rain, I think I found a way on how I want to write them. Maybe the format of how I write them hasn’t changed too much since my beginning days, but the fact that I think each show needs their own focus and variation of this format is what I decided. Each show that I’ve watched has their own strengths and weaknesses. Changing this format around to suit my and the shows needs is the only change that I felt like I need to do. Each review should be personal to that one series and I hope I accomplished that. If I didn’t, writing reviews is always going to be a work in progress for me. I’ve only gotten closer on how I want to approach them.
Notable Blog Posts
Here are some my favorite blog posts that I’ve put on my blog this past year:
–Watch More Older Anime
–Re:Creators – How meta can one Series Get?
–Watching Horrifying Anime in Public
–Jazz and Mechs: Why Music is Important
–Wolf’s Rain: The Journey to Paradise
–Strengths of Science Fiction Media (and why I love it)
–OWL’s Post: Turn A Gundam: Negotiations and Unfortunately Necessary Fights
Some of these posts might not be your favorites, so please let me know if you have one.
If I had to describe a year of my blog to someone in a short amount of time, these eleven posts are how I would do it.
My Future Plans:
Before I dig into my future plans, I want to talk about what I am going to be doing this year. Right now, and for the next few months, I plan on staying at home and continue what I’ve been doing. The only difference will be classes. I don’t think I will be taking any. Maybe I will sneak in a CAD class, but I don’t know if any place around me offers one near me. Maybe I will get some more blogging stuff out during this time. Who knows?
The most interesting things occur in August. Around this time, I will be returning to a university in the Midwest to finish up my Masters Degree in person. I will be quitting my job, traveling with a lot of my things as a family, and going to school. I don’t know if I will be taking one class or two, but I will be working at least 20 hours a week. I should only be there for about one semester and that should be all that it takes. I’m kind of excited about this. Since I know that I can work forty-hour weeks, take a class, and do a lot of other hobbies, I’m sure that I can keep this blog up. It will serve as a good stress reliever for me.
Future Blog Plans:
OWLS and Innominate Anime Podcast:
If you don’t know what these things are, this page will link you to the OWLS blog and this link will lead you to Innominate Anime Podcast’s twitter. Nothing new for these two groups other than on taking part in as many blog tours and podcasts as I can.
I know that we haven’t had more podcast episodes recently, but it’s hard to schedule podcasts with only a few of us, let alone all of us. We all lead busy lives. I’m sorry guys. Episode 2 will happen eventually
I think almost everyone knows about this and so far it’s going along smoothly. I finished my third series that I am going to review and only have to watch a six-episode ova thing and rewatch some bits of another series next. I’m only planning on post five reviews through out the month of march for this. I have some interesting topics that I want to write discussions about too. There might be yet another surprise that is completely unexpected too which revolves around another series. All will be revealed in the future *wiggles fingers dramatically*.
I don’t think this event will get a lot of views. I did put in some familiar shows with some unfamiliar ones to help with this, but this event isn’t about the views. I am doing this because I want to and because Mecha March is an alliteration that works. That’s about it for that. Watching an episode or two a day for this may not sound like a lot of work, but it’s been pretty grating on my nerves. I usually like mixing up the genres when it comes to watching older shows. I am going to stay away from binge watching mech anime for a while after completing all of these shows. At least until the next Mecha March, if that is something that I plan on doing next year.
Right now, this is just an idea. I have recently purchased a couple Hideaki Anno shows (not Eva). I plan on doing a smaller event with only a couple of his shows and maybe go through Otaku no Video and talk about it. Otaku no Video is only $10 on right stuff and it is something that I’ve been curious about for a while now. The only problem I have with this is the fact that I am moving somewhere in August. It may or may not happen for all we know, but it’s worth a shot. If anything, I will at least watch these shows and just write reviews of them at some random time intervals.
This is something that I want to do more in the next year. More Collabs with more people. I have a couple planned right now, am in the middle of a longer one, and I am interested in doing more. If you want to do a collaboration post with me this year, please send a message to me here or dm me on twitter.
Money is something that is hard to talk about and it’s not something I want to ask others to do. Still, running this blog isn’t the easiest thing to do. I am not going to ask people for money or monetized this blog, but I want to at least open up a donation option. How does that sound to people? If a Ko-fi or Paypal link appear, would that force you to donate? I don’t want to forcibly take money from people, so this is the only option that worked in my own mind. Giving people the ability to donate, but not force them to, is the best option. Please let me know your thoughts about this in the comments section.
Sharing and Supporting Other People’s Works:
I have not been good at this and I am not holding any promises, but I want to at least try sharing other people’s works. I have only done this once and have not returned to doing another post like it yet. If I start doing this again, then great. If I don’t, then I will try to support people in other ways. One way or another, more blogs will be supported here.
As you’ve noticed, I’ve kept a lot more goals pretty low to the ground and there is a reason for that. I want to keep them as something that I can actually do. No set goals for followers or views, because I don’t want to be disappointed and I don’t want to angry over internet numbers. If I gain more followers, that’s fine. If I don’t, that’s fine too. I’m already happy enough with how this blog is going and having larger goals that go beyond that don’t seem reasonable to me. I want to watch anime and write about it. If I accomplish that, who cares what happens after the fact?
Once again, thank you for following me. I hope this block of text wasn’t too scary. Let’s have another good year!