The Benefits of Episodic Blogging & Other Navel-gazing

I’m trying to be consistent with this nth return to aniblogging, so even if this is a self-indulgent post, I’m going to write it. It’s not for lack of ideas either (plus I also have that Moveable Manga Project that I’m hosting later this month — aaaah) but even too many ideas that I don’t know how to put together coherently. Plus while Japan’s revving up with the new anime season, a bunch of the US shows I’ve been watching are having their season finales and gotta keep up with those too. Yes, all #nerdworldproblems.

Been somewhat successful in keeping up with new series and even writing about them. It’s cute how I’ve almost come full-circle; started off as an episodic blog, then jumped on the editorial/commentary bandwagon, and now I’d like to think of myself as an off-kilter hybrid. I won’t summarize what happened in the episode for you — ’cause you can watch that on your own — but I’ll pick up what I thought was a significant moment/theme and overthink it to pieces. Episodic posting lets me think critically about the show in smaller chunks, to pay attention to details (or what I call my “throwaway moments”) instead of looking for the overarching theme. Micro- vs macro-level, as it were.

I don’t even know why I was so down on episodic blogs in the first place. Maybe there was just a point somewhere in ’07-’08 where I felt as if they were all over the place, raw-watching blowhards who misunderstood the point of episodes yet were too cocky to shut up. Granted, those types of bloggers only came up because the concept of simulcasts was still a hazy pipe dream. And now, in 2013, we have everything from Aiura to Zetsuen no Tempest, right at our virtual doorsteps, hours after broadcast, legally, subtitled and (mostly) in HD. Welcome to the future.

Even though I’m not fond about keeping up with weekly episodes, I’ve forgotten how much fun it is to keep up with everyone else and be excited about what just happened. On twitter, especially, it’s like I finally decoded the language that everyone’s speaking. And while I’m sometimes still doubtful of Crunchyroll’s acquisition (why no Precure?) and translation choices, the convenience is delicious. I really think another reason why I took such a long blogging hiatus (other than the omg boyfriend/social life w00t) was the amount of time and emotional bandwidth that I had to expend to finding the best version of a fansub of a show that I wanted to watch. With CR, I do away with the fansubber drama and pissing contests. Granted, once I leave the nice IP confines of the US for Manila next month, this vast library will no longer be available to me, so I’m enjoying it while I can.

I really regret losing all of the former TJ content when I switched to wordpress from my own hosted domain. There was actually a time when I was blogging WJ series like Tenipuri and One Piece; yes, the foolishness of youth. Maybe I should do a week where I  blog only long-running shonen series, picking the most recent episode and figure out wtf is going on. Even if it would only be interesting to me, it would have been at least funny to see how much my change has/hasn’t changed since the early-00s.  And that’s where I think my husbando 3×3 is relevant. Other than Fate/Zero and Tiger & Bunny, most of my anime boyfriends are from series that I’ve seen ~2006. That time was possibly the peak of my anime fangirlism and I’m only just now getting back there.

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5 thoughts on “The Benefits of Episodic Blogging & Other Navel-gazing

  1. I have been doing episodic posts for a long time and I feel that there is a diminishing returns. There is not that much satisfaction from it these days compared to write a full review or an editorial. While there is some use, it only really benefit popular sites as they get them out first.

    • can you define what you mean by diminishing returns? do you gauge how successful a post is by the number of comments?

      From the get-go, I never intended this blog to get thousands of hits per day so that’s why I’ve always stuck to what I know best, in the style that I can do best. If people find this blog and subscribe or add it to their rss feeder/bloglist, that’s fine for me. The knowledge that there are a handful of people reading is great, so any comment I receive is gravy.

      • I think it’s just that with episodic blogging, people just get bored. The readers will move onto the new guy whose head is buzzing with fresh ideas.

        To those blogs that do keep their readership, it’s either because of accessibility of their content or the extensive staff they have on hand. Either the posts are simple and to the point or everyday you get someone else’s take on a certain anime. It’s hard to compete for the ivory tower critic.

        My goal is to promote conversation. But considering how cookie cutter anime can be, sometimes you end up asking your audience to have the same conversation for the upteenth time. I think it’s important for bloggers out there to expand their styles. I’m usually comfortable with philosophical and ethical analysis of anime. Lately I’ve been trying to include a literary context.

        Evolution is the key to achieving most blogging goals, but sometimes that isn’t enjoyable.

      • Your points are all valid, and I agree that bloggers who wish to engage their audience must offer something that isn’t available in another outlet.

        In the end, we’re all here to bring our individual voices into the conversation, so how we accomplish being heard will vary from person-to-person.

      • Well of course, I blog because I’m motivated… I have been doing it for four years, which is why I’m committed to continuing as I already paid for hosting and a domain name. But I think the lack of comments has to do with my lack of interaction, although it’s easy to get a discussion on editorials these days… Unique content is the goal at the end of the day and episodic posts I feel have creative limitations as you care confined to one episode.

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