A Bit of a Change

With a new year comes a re-evaluation of the way I do things. I’m not planning any massive overhauls, or anything, but I want to tweak my approach to writing a bit as I continue to adjust to this whole blogging thing.

I’ve been running this site for nearly five months now — in the grand scheme of things I am still a huge newbie trying to find the best way to do things for my writing style. I think episodic blogging has treated me well so far — I’ve enjoyed tackling most of the series I’ve written about week by week. For the most part I think I have done relatively well in choosing series that interest me enough to keep going back to them, and that also offer enough for me to provide a different perspective on them (most of the time) and to not repeat the same things ad nauseum in each post.

At the same time, however, episodic blogging has clear limitations, and I haven’t done myself any favors by allowing myself to be shackled a bit too easily by its restraints. I’m not going to pretend I am some brilliant literary analyst (lord knows that’s far from the truth), but there were some series I wanted to write about but never got around to doing so because . . . I dunno, I felt weird about jumping in on them in the middle of the series, I guess. Which is clearly retarded because I started this damn site by jumping in on the middle of several series.

For whatever stupid reason I fooled myself into thinking there’s something wrong with jumping into a series in the middle of it when clearly that’s stupid. If I have something interesting to write about, then nobody is really going to give a shit which episode I started from. Nobody looks at my archives at all and says, “OMG he didn’t start from the beginning when blogging the second season of Spice and Wolf, the fiend!!” and if someone does say that, then he or she is a moron.

So I want to change my approach a bit. There are series that are good enough to blog the whole way through, and I’ll certainly have my fair share of shows I blog to completion, but I don’t want to ignore those series that might take a few episodes to get a full head of steam. Sometimes I’ll jump on a few episodes in and keep going with it if a series takes the leap, and other times I’ll just highlight a particularly good episode within a series. (For example, I wasn’t at all interested in blogging Kampfer, but in this system, I almost certainly would have written about ep11, which was a hilarious trainwreck that greatly entertained me.) That approach will work especially well for comedies, I think, which come off to me as somewhat difficult to blog weekly.

I don’t want to limit this to currently airing series either; I watch a good number of series outside of current seasons, and I rarely post about them here. I want to change that, so when I come across really good episodes of series I’m watching (or maybe a good group of episodes if I want to highlight an arc I really enjoyed, or something like that), I’ll post about ‘em.

Also, I want to change up the way I approach reviews. I don’t really like writing them in a way that’s, “This is what I liked about the series, and this is what I didn’t like.” It’s boring for me to write, and because that comes across in the writing, I’m sure it’s boring for people to read as well. (Not that there aren’t good reviewers who write that way — psgels is particularly good at getting in and out with a quick opinion.) Like many people, when I get bored with writing something, I also get frustrated and lazy — my Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny review took a month for me to post, which is ridiculous. I didn’t like the series, but I wrote about it anyway because I was in my dumb “I have to write long reviews for every series I complete!!” phase, which lasted for three series.

What I want to do instead is highlight a couple of things about the series that really grabbed me (like a certain theme, or great characterization or particularly great animation or whatever), limit my thoughts to 500-700 words or so and get the hell out. Basically it’s an ego check for me, haha. Forcing myself to be concise has always worked better for me than filling a bunch of space with words, anyway.

So it goes. Any other suggestions are welcome; I’m just trying  to be as flexible as possible with what I write about.

4 Responses to “A Bit of a Change”

  1. Blogging takes a fair bit of stamina, especially if you’re doing episodic blogging and doing a few series at a time. I too have this thing for finishing what I started, and sometimes it does end up biting you in the ass.

    At least you generally don’t do summaries, that always takes me a while but I guess it’s part of our team editorial policy, something which I didn’t do back in the day when I blogged on my own blog :)

    • Haha, I can see why you guys do summaries because of the humor angle you take with them. I just don’t like writing them; it takes me long enough to get some of these posts out as it is!

  2. more posts = more for me to read = :)

    Generally the approach I take with anything other than episodics is write whatever I’m interested about that others would be interested to read about. Sometimes I’ll start writing something and realise halfway through that this would be insanely dull to read. I often end up with a load of half-written posts with the intent of going back to it later when I have an interesting angle to talk from.

    I also went through the ‘review everything’ phase once. Boy did that die quickly…

  3. Heh, I was writing up a similar post as well. Nothing like the end of the year to make people all reflective. :-P

    I can relate with your thinking. Maybe it’s the completionist in me, but the idea of starting a show in the middle, or just writing about an episode here and there bugs me. It’s totally irrational though. I mean, I’ve done it before. I’ve enjoyed doing it. And besides, it’s my blog, I can do whatever I want, right?

    So if you wanna go ahead and drop in on shows every now and then, you won’t find any complaints from me. =D

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