This Hand of Mine is Burning Red, It Tells Me to Watch Anime: Thoughts on Blogging

Ever since THAT Anime Blog came out with its guides on how to establish yourself as a blogger, I’ve toyed around with the idea of writing my own. My intended approach was to focus less on steps for “establishing” a blog-like entity and more on the act of writing one’s feelings on anime and manga. As I started to think about it more though, I realized that as much as I can talk about the way I write, the last thing I want to do is to give the impression that my style is better or that you should be trying to write how I write.

But even though I don’t think I can write a proper guide for anime blogging at this point, I still want to convey what I think are essentials for anime blogging, or at the very least are pointers that will help you, whether you’ve already been blogging for years or you’ve just started thinking about committing your thoughts to your internet journal. I will still use myself as an example, but mainly so that I can give some context to my thoughts.

Think of the Possibilities

Before I even start to write, I approach anime blogging with the notion that there is always, always something interesting to talk about or to consider. Now a lot of times I don’t even manage to reach those interesting conversation points, but what’s important here is the mindset. Somewhere out there in the nebulous space of otaku-relevant thought is at least one on-going discussion that is worth exploring, or perhaps an idea that has yet to be expanded upon, or even an area into which you can funnel your own thoughts and opinions.

Anime series, manga series, comparing anime to manga, fandom itself, story, characters, episodes, story arcs, character design, costume design, political and philosophical messages, psychological elements of games, the possibilities are near-endless, and if I fail to talk about something interesting, I don’t think it’s anime’s fault for not having enough meat, but more my fault for having my attention caught up by other things.

Which isn’t a bad thing, really. I can’t fault someone for not feeling like they can write about anime or an anime-related subject because their mind was elsewhere. However, I think you can see that there’s a difference between “I couldn’t find anything interesting to talk about” and “There wasn’t anything interesting to talk about.”

Understand Yourself, or At Least Try to

If you’re looking to foster your “voice” as a writer or at least as an anime fan, I think it’s good to have a good sense of yourself and how you approach your anime fandom. Do you see any trends? Why do you think you like one show but not the other? Can you commit those thoughts to your keyboard in a way where others can understand where you’re coming from even if they disagree with you?

My personal voice as it has been established on this blog is one of creating connections. I look to connect seemingly disparate ideas with one another to foster conversation and at the same time connect readers with ideas both old and new so that they too can think more about themselves and their fandom. However, this is not entirely how Ogiue Maniax began, and it’s something that was only eventually established as I wrote more. So even if you feel like you don’t have a voice, or you don’t feel like you understand yourself as an anime fan, you can still treat your blog as a venue for self-exploration. It doesn’t even necessarily have to be about you. One possibility is to write your thoughts on two different shows and to just kind of compare your two posts and see if they differ any in tone, attitude, or some other area. Then, simply ask yourself, “why?”

Love It Even When You Hate It

The feeling that I really want to emphasize is joy. Anime blogging should be fun even when it’s frustrating and you feel like it might not be worth it to say anything. If you can keep it fun for yourself by watching fewer shows, do so. If it’s more fun when you focus on specific things, focus on that. If it becomes a bit of a chore, don’t be afraid to experiment and find something you do want to talk about. If you can get fired up over what’s wrong with a series instead of what’s right, talk about that provided you can do so with genuine gusto. Burn-out is fairly common within anime blogging, and the chief cause is a simple loss of passion. That’s not to say that you can’t sometimes get tired of writing about anime or whatever topic you’re on, but that even when you get the strange feeling that your blogging has turned into an obligation, it shouldn’t completely extinguish the flame of fandom that burns within you.

10 thoughts on “This Hand of Mine is Burning Red, It Tells Me to Watch Anime: Thoughts on Blogging

  1. Great advice! I just started blogging last week and actually your blog was one reason that encouraged me to do so.

    Now this post couldn’t have any better time for me, thanks for writing it.

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  2. Anime blogging should be fun even when it’s frustrating and you feel like it might not be worth it to say anything.

    This. Even if I don’t post as frequently as some other anime bloggers do, or as frequently as others want me to do, I never lose the enjoyment of doing it, and that’s how I can keep going. I always say that when it stops being fun is when one should stop doing it, but that sounds too final to me when I think of it. Passion ebbs and flows, and I guess it’s how long you’re willing to wait for your passion to come back when you lose it. If you’re willing to wait.

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  3. Being new to this blogging shenanigans and reading different guides, the recurring warning about burning out doesn’t seem like it will be something I have to worry about due to the AMV shtick I am aiming for. Making an AMV can take anything from a couple hours, to days and sometimes weeks. However, I haven’t burn out on AMVs and I seem to be long over due for one.

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  4. Ogiue Maniax is the blog that inspired me to start to my own honestly. But I’ve found it a pretty frustrating experience for two reasons. The first being that my writing doesn’t seem interesting at all to me and the second that after 61 posts I’ve had one comment in total.

    Good advice though. ^^ Hopefully I’ll be able to rediscover my interest in blogging.

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  5. Wow, I agree with just about all of your points here. When I run out of ideas to blog about, I know there’s gotta be an interesting topic out there that I haven’t yet written about, and I eventually find it. I also use my blog as, like you say, a venue for self-exploration into the nature of my anime fandom. And lastly, I make sure I’m enjoying what I’m writing about even if it’s something I don’t think will be a hit with my readers.

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  6. I’m always looking for more inspiration, hopefully some of these strategies will help me write more original and more personal entries. Because who wants to just copy someone else’s style?

    That said, this was one of the blogs that inspired me to give anime blogging a try. I felt a little bad about picking the same WordPress theme, though. Didn’t want to look like I was trying to copy your style or anything.

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  7. Pingback: Preventing Anime Burn-Out « OGIUE MANIAX

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