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What I Learned From Starting A Blog, Year 3

Posted on the 23 July 2014 by Kaminomi @OrganizationASG

Well then

Something tells me I missed the timing of this by a lot of months. Just a feeling…

Anyways, I’m on to year 3 of reflecting and explaining what I’ve learned from starting a blog. For those who don’t know why I’m doing this, in 2012 I did my first panel about what I learned starting a blog at Springfest NY, and promptly entertained 4 people for a while. I also wrote about the con. Since then, I’ve taken it up to explain every April what I’ve learned from starting a blog.

Of course, it’s not April anymore. So I guess I forgot about it or something.

Anyways, considering I’m on Year 3, you’d think there’s not much to learn about right? I’ve surely learned all that there is to know about blogging right? Welp, there always seems to be new things to learn every day, week, month, and year, so might as well share what I do know. Of course, this isn’t a comprehensive list. But…oh well.

Anyways, let me share what I’ve learned in Year 3!

I learned you have to be unique…again!!!

I’m copping out again this year, as I’m listing something that’s been on prior lists. I will probably continue until this is actually true: try and be unique! Nowadays, attempting to start episodic blogging site #1000 is great, but a lot of things have to go right to get any sort of traction with anyone since there’s a lot of them out there, and a lot of them are mediocre. You want to talk about an anime series currently running? You’ll have to excuse someone unwilling to read it if it’s just a summary of a series that they’ve read on 10 other blogs. Or even if it’s mostly reaction of events, it’s still gonna be tough sledding, unless you’ve been blogging for years and years.

Basically, you have to take an established concept and break it in the best way possible.

Of course, you don’t have to blog an anime series weekly. You could also review anime! But does it have to be every anime? What about reviewing shounen anime? Covering all the romance anime in a season? Of course, it doesn’t have to be that either. It can be whatever you’d like to do the best. In the end, find something you like, and try and incorporate it into your blog in a fresh way. Will you know what to do immediately? Probably not. Sometimes it takes a while. Like this guy for example. He had a different blog than the one I linked to, but found something he was passionate with, and ran with it. So hey, you always have a chance to change. Of course, it depends on how long you stick with it.

I learned that, surprisingly enough, simple is best.

Sometimes, being simple can be the best thing you can do. When I worked on the anime you can watch legally post, for example, I thought when planning on what to do with it that it was too simple. I mean, we all know what anime we can watch and how we watch it right? Well as it turns out, there’s a lot of people who’ll watch a show on an anime streaming site that’s not really legal and has lower quality than one on Crunchyroll or Hulu or wherever else. So sometimes the post where you think in your head, “Man, this is too simple, people know this already,” there’ll be others who don’t know it. And even if someone does know it, they may just pass it along anyways, since they might know someone who may not know, or someone can use it as a reference for something.

But in general, simple for anything can be best, whether it’s in writing (making people understand what you’ve written) or to the blog design.

I learned you might be lucky enough to get in touch with a creator.

Last year I talked about how I was lucky enough to interview Mamoru Hosoda and talk about Wolf Children while staving off my blood pressure rising from being in his presence. This year, I talked to Hiroto Kawabata, the original author of Ginga no World Cup–also known as Ginga e Kickoff, the anime–on Twitter: ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

— ??????????????? (@Rsider) November 15, 2013

Hi Justin! I enjoyed your blog entries on Ginga. Thanx RT @Kami_nomi: The creator has a twitter btw (@Rsider).

— ??????????????? (@Rsider) November 15, 2013

@Rsider You're right. Mr. Uda and his staff at TYO did a great job. But it does help to have strong material :)

— Justin (@Kami_nomi) November 15, 2013

@Kami_nomi Thanx. let me discuss something about Anime and US fans in the future. I believe you have good vision & I'm curious.

— ??????????????? (@Rsider) November 15, 2013

@Rsider That would be great. My email's [email protected] Would love to continue talking with you.

— Justin (@Kami_nomi) November 15, 2013

Unfortunately, I screwed up in the process, and I haven’t heard back from him since. I still feel deep shame in messing up somehow to this day. But whatever the case, because of that experience, you can do two things: one, you can find a way to get in touch with people you’ve never thought about possible (though it’ll definitely take a while), and two, you may want to just let the creator speak out his mind 90% of the time.

(Why, no, that’s not what I’m implying with what happened here…h-honest! Though the real lesson is to be mindful, since these guys are busy. Also, all my Ginga e Kickoff posts have been destroyed (at least the images) due to bad habits and crap. Just a warning on that)

I learned you can expect to make some blogging friends, then to have them disappear suddenly

When you start a blog, before you know it you’ll find a blog or two that you’ll like and ultimately get in touch with its creator. You’ll then proceed to know them for a good while. And then just like that, they’ll go poof. That has happened over the 3 year span of me blogging. You may not even be that close, but a blog you just like, and then that blog goes…poof. Of course, what often happens is the blog goes on hiatus, or they announce they’re not going to blog anymore. It happens. Life happens. The passion to blog goes away. There’s a multitude of reasons, but it happens. You’ll just have to accept it as part of blogging.

(Of course, you can come back after all)

I learned that blogs will never go away, but blogging is getting closer to dead.

It’d be crazy to say blogs will go away. If you subscribe to the notion that anyone can start a blog and do whatever. Like post anime endcards every day or something. From that standpoint, blogging won’t really die.

But boy, does it feel like most blogs are dead now.

Needless to say, I’ve had to remove a lot of blogs from my RSS feed service because they don’t update. For 3 months. 6 months. You get the picture. I always feel saddened whenever I have to do that, but I’ve since adopted a different mindset: if they’re still around, they’ll find a way to get back in my presence again. It rarely has happened. But I think, with WP kinda degrading in service, people moving onto Tumblr and Twitter, giving up blogging due to real life, and the actual quality of the material they may deal with (anime/manga) also possibly lacking, the downward trend will continue. And we’ll probably have very few blogs around that actually provide interesting commentary on their favorite medium.

So yeah, that’s some of the few things I’ve learned in Year 3. Will there be a Year 4? Will there be anything to learn in Year 4? I guess I’ll just have to find out somehow.

Let’s hope I remember to work on this in April though, and stop breaking tradition.

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What I Learned From Starting A Blog, Year 3


Justin is the founder of Organization Anti-Social Geniuses. Anime & manga fan that likes to blog about anime and manga, is addicted to sports, and weak to crossovers. You can follow Justin on Twitter @Kami_nomi. What I Learned From Starting A Blog, Year 3

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