Posted on 7 August 2013 with categories: Random Posts

I really want to apologize for the lack of updates. I’m currently trying to catch up on Uchoten Kazoku’s episodes. I should have an episode review of them ready tomorrow. In the meantime, I’d like to talk about what it means to be blogging, and the moment that every single blogger dreads: the lack of updates. This is a very personal entry, but I hope that it helps both myself and others who are in similar situations. For those of you with a tl;dr mindset: I have no intention to quit blogging; I still really like tihs blog, and nothing about that has changed.

In my nearly eight years of blogging, I have seen a lot of blogs coming and going. In general, the short-lived blogs quit because the author loses interest: it’s a nice little experiment, but either a loss of enthusiasm for anime itself, or the inability to just blog regularly is usually the reason for these blogs to close down. For the longer-lived blogs, the reason usually is that people grow out of anime; they change and the priorities in their lives. I’ve also seen a handful who come back after a hiatus of a few years, but that usually just ends with a few posts.

As for me, I still identify as a blogger. It’s true that we just had the worst Spring Season in the past ten years, and a pretty abysmal Winter Season as well, but I really noticed that that didn’t diminish my love for anime. There were plenty of series that still captured me, ranging from Aku no Hana, Shingeki no Kyojin to From the New World and Chihayafuru. And the current Summer Season is really showing that Anime is far from dead. Series like Uchoten Kazoku, Tamayura, the new Rozen Maiden: I already love them and I really want to cover them.

So yeah, the problem is where to find the time to blog everything. I’ve said before that I’ve been very busy, both with my full time job, and that I’ve got a much bigger social life than what I used to have now. I always was a bit vague on what that actually meant, so let me elaborate a bit on my schedule.

I actually just started my new job last week. It’s a job of 36 hours per week. Mondays through thursday I work eight hours, and on fridays I work half a day. On fridays and during weekends, I usually have some sort of appointment with some friends of mine, or attend some public events that I know that people with similar mindsets attend as well. On weekdays I’m usually at home around 6pm, and done with dinner around 7pm, ideally.

The thing is, that it’s not like I don’t have the time to blog anymore. I know for a fact that if I use my time well, even with all my appointments, I can blog 12 shows per week and even have time for a movie. It’s also not like I don’t have the energy for it. I know from experience that I can get energized while watching a good episode. This season is full of those series! The problem is that I spend way too much of my time on the internet, browsing pointless videos that serve no point whatsoever. I’d say about 20% of it is useful: checking mail, keeping up with friends, that kind of stuff. However most of it is just random goofing off; spending way too much time on facebook, or watching stupid Let’s plays on youtube.

Let me get on a bit of a tangent here, because I also dabbled in a bunch of western games during the past half year. This is sortof relevant to this post, because I noticed that playing these games only increased my laziness in the long run. The thing is though, that gaming nowadays sucks for me. And it’s not like I picked bad ones. I’m talking about games like Minecraft, Civilization, the Binding of Isaac. Games that sound good and full of depth on paper, and I used to be a fan of civilization in the past, but every single one of them gets bogged down by repetition. Minecraft had me mining the same rock for hours after each other. Civilization starts off interesting, until you have to do the same tasks over and over again and games take waaaay too long, and the Binding of Isaac also isn’t really random once you realize that all you’re doing is running through a bunch of rooms and shooting things. It’s also a problem that I’m not good at gaming, so it takes me even longer than the people

Another example of this: platformers. I recently played Rayman Legends, after being a big fan of the first two Rayman series. But there too, the levels just kept looking way too much like each other and halfway through the level designers just give up and start to recycle previous levels. This is the same repetition I see at all kinds of other platform games: everything is just way too similar after playing a bunch of levels. There is way too much repetition and way too little creativity. Even Skyrim got tedious after killing the umpth zombie.

NB: as a honorable mention, these are western games that I do consider to be good:
– Portal: It’s short, witty and keeps you interested; the hype is very annoying, but this is what games should aim to be. And I mean the philosophy of variation, not just literally paste Glados in every game. That totally misses the point.
– Temple of Elemental Evil: a western RPG, half broken without a fan-made patch and a bare-bones story. However, what I loved is what you could completely customize your own set of characters and most importantly: you are encouraged to make these characters flawed and incredibly diverse, making it ridiculously fun to do all sorts of creative things with them, and watch them grow. The only downside: the more characters you have in your party, the less experience you get, the more you need to grind. Grinding is evil!
– Beyond Good and Evil: short game, divided into four arcs. Every arc is different and focuses on a different element of gameplay and has a different atmosphere.

Anyway, repetition. It can be incredibly evil. It can trap you in this routine that you can’t escape from. The more you get used to it, the more you keep looking for options that offer easy kinds of repetition. However, there are enough examples of good repetition. This is the type of repetition that is fulfilling. Think about getting out of bed at the same time each day, doing exercises on a regular basis, spending time on your hobby (in my case blogging). The annoying part is that the evil repetition easily has power over your will and motivation to focus on the good repetition, and once you lose that focus on the good repetition, getting back is impossible unless you put in effort.

You can’t just say “I’m going to do better”. That won’t work, you’ll usually succumb to the evil repetitions usually within seconds. You need to completely change your mindset, and actually DO it, not just talk about it. Acknowledging the problem doesn’t work, while wasting time on the internet I see way too many people just joke about it, without offering any practical hints of how to get over it (9gag is by far the worst offender of this, and everyone should actively block that evil website).

So I was wondering what you guys do in order to get out of a slump? For me, I noticed that with other parts of my life, the concept of fear or impending doom was a good motivator, and at this point in my life I have learned how to turn fear into positive emotions. I haven’t learned how to create it and make use of that, though. Go ahead and share some of your experiences.

57 Responses

  1. Houlgrave says:

    Well, I dunno how much help my own little anecdote will be, but here I go — I ran a music blog for about three years straight and only now update it sporadically: part of why I stopped was a lack of a participating audience. I’d get plenty of views, but almost no comments. And for a lot of prospective bloggers, whether they’ve just started it or have been doing it a long time, that kills motivation in a big way.

    Psgels, you have a fairly dedicated audience, which is quite the asset in and of itself. You get feedback by lots of people all the time both in your posts AND in that chatbox. That’s a powerful thing to have IMO, so that in itself should motivate you to post.

    However, I know that’s not enough, so here’s my suggestion — only do two or maybe three posts a week. Cover multiple episodes of different series per post on series that you are following. Spotlight particular things you enjoyed about each episode and give ‘em a rating like you’ve been doing.

    Basically, if you don’t have to post as much per week to keep your audience engaged, I think you’ll feel less slumped over because your post-quota won’t be as high as it has been up until this point. Give it a try! :)

    • Vonter says:

      Agreed. I keep on with was rlevant in anime thanks to this blog. Mainly because you tell what I look forward in a series without spoiling (there are times I don’t agree but it’s cause the medium shows for many different tastes).

  2. ronbb says:

    In my case, I need deadlines and a friend. I listed out all the good habits that I needed to get back on, detailed out the steps of how, and gave each step a deadline. I shared this with my friend and met her on a weekly basis for like a “status” report — this gave me pressure to do what I set out for the week. It wasn’t easy and definitely took time and effort, but it helped me.

  3. Emma-hime says:

    On the first point, take as long as you need, deem necessary, that you still get out the posts is something we consider a blessing to us as your readers. And if you ever do close up then we’ll support you there too.
    And on videogames I feel largely betrayed by the industry post the mid 2000s beyond the indie scene, it just isn’t fun, far far too much focus on an online play element, MMOs and FPS games which while fun at first are so crowded and time demanding, the social end of gaming I feel is actually hampered by more people playing online rather than in one room together. And I’m more of a watcher than a player so playing can be a bit of a pain sometimes.
    The repetition thing, as craply functioning autistic myself is outright torture (which leads to everything potentially becoming a poison) and that along that I have no-one irl to share my interest with regularly makes it worse.
    I can understand people lacking motivation, I’m almost 17 years at this and to be honest I’ve had a mixed, sometimes genuinely great run. But despite some moments I just can’t keep up with anime/manga anymore. Its become a ritual/repetition/routine moreso for me now, its mostly nostalgia, nothing else to do and no-one talking to me in irl, never finding stable courses or work that keeps me at it.

  4. Fluca says:

    My technique is this: Strict schedule. Once you have your entire day planned out, all you have to do is start and the rest of your chores will be a mere consequence.

    Granted, oftentimes you’ll have to force yourself to start, but once you do, one task will naturally segue into the other, making it easy to follow through with your plans.

    Just one clarification, by no means having a strict schedule equates to not having free time. You’ll just have to schedule it as well.

    I have been using this technique for years now and it tends to work really well.

    Of course, if you allow yourself to slack, everything will go down the drain and, as you said so yourself, it’ll take that much determination to get yourself going again.

    I hope you manage to overcome this problem, since your blog is very dear to me.

    Anyways, thanks for keeping at it all this time!

  5. JaK says:

    Bro been visiting this blog for nearly 4 years now and well its become kind a habit for me to check this blog like 10 times a day xD even if you dont update it [ the chat is a nice place].

    About the slump imo you need to try something different to put you out of the rutt for me i lost nearly all interest in anime about a year ago instead of just stopping i instead started reading books and comics covering different genre’s and in time i was able to come back to watching anime though now iam very very selective only watch the best rest goes to trash.

    Hoping you stick around for another 4 years xD good luck :)

    • Emma-hime says:

      I can also understand changing focuses I remember I did what you did before Jak but in addition to comics I also got more into movies and western tv.
      Actually lately I even seem to be putting anime/manga off for short story writing more and films.

      • JaK says:

        westren TV right that too xD in addition to J-Dorama’s which i find pretty well made the good ones anyway, you should try some.

  6. Emma-hime says:

    Scheduling is an interesting idea and can definitely work, but I found myself, through the very method I used to try and get out of the problem became an issue itself because of the way I’m psychologically wired =<

  7. Catherine says:

    I really don’t have any advice except to agree with Ronbb that to have a mentor or check up person with whom you meet weekly is a great idea and has helped me with issues in the past. I just wanted to say that your blog is one of my anime addictions…for me it is by far the best and by reading it I have found many series that I really loved to watch. So thank you so much. I have only been watching anime for about 3 years and your writing is a key part of my education!

    Also, thanks for sharing about your blogging block…darn those pesky games!

    Best,
    Catherine Conn

  8. Airies says:

    Lol this post actually came at an interesting time because my general interest I have in anime is slowly fading away but not, if that makes sense. I’ve started watching american and british dramas all of a sudden and I have been loving the series that I have been watching so far, much more than I have with an anime since like mawaru penguindrum tbh (exception of SSY, AnH). Knowing the way the anime universe works has actually caused me to lose interest because even though I havent seen every single series or that many to begin with, I know of them and I know what people think and nothing feels fresh or adventurous in trying anything. I still have a list of classics that I will slowly finish before I die though but other than that I can t see myself sticking much longer to this ‘lifestyle’ (which sadly it has become and wish I could reffered to it as a hobby but that would be an understatement). I guess we’ll see what happens.

  9. AidanAK47 says:

    It’s all about willpower. Or in my case putting a taboo on certain things.
    First off, lets plays. Don’t watch them. Utterly worthless videos designed to be watched in bunches. I tried watching game grumps and found myself skipping through looking for the so called entertainment. You would save a lot of time just by placing a taboo on lets play videos.
    Second, never ever buy a game with more than fifty hours gameplay. I have been avoiding fallout 3, dragon age origins, knights of the old republic and Skyrim for that exact reason. (That said I actually bought three of those, and I will never get around to finishing them)
    Third, if you are playing a facebook game like candy crush saga or something like that I recommend stopping. Those facebook games are designed to be time sinks. Same goes for most online flash games. Basically if you are repeating the same action just to get a new upgrade or achievement, I say the games wasting your time.
    As for the other stuff it’s alright in small doses.

    Though I say use that time for visual novels. They are awesome.

    • Juno says:

      I can most certainly get behind this. Lets plays were nice until I realized I felt much better playing the game myself. And for games themselves, while I do like to check out “great” games every once in a while, I typically limit the ones I play to about 1-2 console games at a time and 1-2 handheld games at a time, only starting the next one when the last one is beat or I get satisfactory progress (and I’m not exactly great at most video games anyway, so it takes me a long time to beat them, too). I typically avoid online/social games or I only choose one or two and play for a little bit at a time, with long breaks in between play sessions. I put up goals for myself and complete those goals in a timely fashion, modifying my schedule when necessary.

      Overall, just recognize:
      1) What activities are being made to take up your time with little reward.
      2) Why you’re doing those activities in the first place.
      3) If you’re reaching your goal, and if not, why?
      …and 4) If you’re starting to prioritize them over the things you actually need to get done.

      If it’s not looking good, then you have to actively find a way to condition yourself to be more organized and productive. Personally, keeping a clean environment and putting deadlines on myself that ONLY are flexible for necessary arrangements I don’t plan myself… or rather, don’t change the moment they’re supposed to be done.

    • arcanes says:

      I get your reasoning but you are missing out on a lot of good video games because of this.

      I played a lot of 50+ hours games and I can tell you that most of them can be played a lot quicker and be way less “repetitive”. What I mean is that if you fellow only the main story in a typical RPG you can usually finish the game pretty quickly. FYI I played dragon age origins for like 65 hours and I did every quest that I could find and I finished knights of the old republic in like 35 hours. Knights of the old republic was particularly amazing back then. To date the best RPG that I’ve played. To me the repetitive part of a RPG is what makes it great. it means you actually in part in control of the game unlike like say COD. And I played a lot of shooters and now I find them way more repetitive than RPGs. To me the whole thing is not a question of time it’s more a question of being fun. If I’m having a fun time playing a game I don’t care how long it will take to finish it. Be it 4 hours or 100 hours.

      Just my very long 2 cents :)

      • AidanAK47 says:

        arcanes, you just fell for the Skinner Box mechanics. Pretty much all RPG’s have them. They are a psychological trick into fooling the player that they are actually achieving something by gaining a level or a new piece of equipment.
        Not necessarily saying they are bad but well the time spent on Dragon Age could be spent writing 60 pages of a novel or finish the entire half life series.
        Shorter games usually have more quality. Because the creators put all their effort into those hours. Where as a hundred hour RPG has more repetitive quests and filler.

        • arcanes says:

          I’m Sorry, but yet again I see your point but I still don’t agree.

          Not by any means to offense you, but I didn’t fall for any trick. I actually choose it. When I play a RPG, I want to learn more about it’s world, people and story. By doing side quests, in good RPGs, I’m achieving just that. I agree that sometimes it can get repetitive, but if the game mechanics are good, even quests like kill x monsters can be a lot of fun. And I really don’t see the wrong with leveling up or wanting to get a new equipment. For me, it makes the game more engaging. When I get a cool new weapon or an awesome new skill, I feel more powerful and sometimes with a new skill it can completely change the way you play the game. I’m against a mindless grind, but in a really good RPG, you just don’t feel like it’s a chore. If you do feel like it, move on.

          To clarify, I play/ed all types of games and I love a good shooter say bioshock as much as I love a good rpg say the witcher. What I don’t think is right to do, is to say doing x hours of this is better than y hours of that. We all have our preferences, and playing all the half life series, playing a good rpg, marathoning an anime or reading a novel? to me they’re all equally good things do to in my spare time.

          And to sum things up, have fun with your hobbies. that’s what I’m trying do to :)

  10. Jalapeno Bagel says:

    definitely understandable. there are a few people that can really grit down and do everything exactly as they scheduled, but those are rare and few in-between. people need time to relax more than they think they do and doing so isn’t a bad thing, as long as it’s not disrupting your life in a wholly negative way.

    what i’ve noticed is that just actually doing the thing you want to do at the moment you think about it, rather than trying to set aside time for it, is usually the best way to do things. if you try to set aside time, there are more opportunities for you to put it off. sure, sometimes you’ll have to make a sacrifice since not every single moment will be convenient enough for you to just make the switch. but if it’s really something you want to do, then I’m guessing the sacrifice will be worth it, or at least, minor enough that you can deal with it.

    well, that’s if you don’t have the willpower currently to keep a schedule. even if you say something like “it’s just 8 hours a day, I’ve got plenty of time afterwards to do stuff,” it takes a bigger toll than anyone might think, especially if the work is mind-numbing. you might not have any willpower left to spare to devote to a serious schedule in that case.

  11. Miriam says:

    Unfortunately, there’s no blogging equivalent of Nanowrimo…
    My recommendation is to get off the computer. Which is hard, when your blog is about watching shows on the internet. So maybe get together once a week and discuss the anime shows you watched (if your friends watch anime). And afterwards, write your blog post. You’ll essentially be rehashing your conversation. You can even record it if that would be helpful.
    A lot of people are saying that you should keep a strict schedule, which is a good idea. But this blog was started as a hobby, and you don’t want to turn it into work or else it won’t be fun. If blogging is conflicting with your social life, try to bring the two together.

  12. dango says:

    Yeah, I suffer from a similar problem, and scheduling doesn’t work out very well, the thing is there are lots games and stuff like facebook their goal is to get you to keep on coming back for, your psychologically prone to keep on using them for the endorphins release just like drugs in a way..the best way is to either detox yourself from the addiction if its harmful or to limit it accordingly.

  13. Mormegil says:

    You should play Dark Souls, psgels. It reignited my passion for gaming.

    • Airies says:

      this is a troll right? haha

      • Nocturne says:

        Hey, why are you saying it’s a troll? How rude, some people do enjoy Dark Souls~ I do!

      • Mormegil says:

        Not at all. It’s an incredibly well-designed game, regardless of how difficult it is.

        • Fluca says:

          Lol, the game is great, but I think Airies meant that it is a HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE time sink, and so, it goes counter what psgels is looking for at the moment.

          But as a game tip, it really is a good one :)

          • Airies says:

            this lol ^

            It just seemed like you completely missed the point of the article, saw video games, then started recommending dark souls lol.

  14. icovoc says:

    Hey Psgels, really glad to see that (even if you’re blogging less) you’re still interested in going. I’ve been reading this blog every few days for something like 3 years, and, I don’t know how it is for other people, but it’s changed the way I watch anime and helped me find (literally) hundreds of series. You’re the best on the internet; would be weird if you stopped because no one else is nearly as good! (And, especially, no one else focuses on those obscure shows that need to be watched but most of the time tend not to be.)

  15. smiledie says:

    I really enjoyed this introspective post into your life. I’ve been reading your blog for a few years now and check more than a couple times a day. Your posts are witty, and insightful and inspired me to create my own anime blog as well! Anyhow, life gets in the way of things for sure, but if its important enough to do something, then there will be time for it. Whenever I get into a slump I go to my good friend who is really receptive to what I say, and after we talk for an hour or so it makes me feel fired up again to start writing or drawing. Keep up the great work, and even if you’re blog isn’t updated as fast as normal, rest assured that I’ll still be checking in.

  16. chuu says:

    I like how you address, in your first paragraph, what a blogger dreads along with what the reader fears the most, that is the blogger quitting for good. I would miss you terribly if you did that.

    As for changing habits, I can only observe that I tend to go from one set of habits to another without really thinking about it. I get tired of a site, or a platform, and just go for something else pretty much seamlessly.

    It makes me wonder if the best approach, when you want to shake a habit, is not to simply do it, without giving any thought or analysis to it. The brain loves habits, habits are easy, and through some wicked reasoning, it will try to convince you to stay in the comfort zone of the acquired routine. Then, once you break your habit, you simply convince yourself that you can do it again.

    Good luck and I look forward to your reviews of the season, because it’s a good one!

  17. KaZuHiRo says:

    Let’s play DotA and DotA 2 psgels!!!

    Honestly, I’m finding this year boring in terms of anime productions. We have no Steins;Gate, Shiki or Madoka. The only thing that came off as entertaining was Vulvarape and that was a hell of a trainwreck too. I, now, only watch Shingeku no Kyojin and Hunter X Hunter. I stopped Chihayafuru, Aku no Hana, Uchuu Kyoudai, RDG, Robotics;Notes, E7AO, Shinsekai Yori, AKB0048, Psycho-Pass halfway. The series that I managed to finish were pretty much lackluster: Binbougami-ga and Hataraku Maou-sama! We need NoitaminA back!

  18. Tofu says:

    I hardly comment but I do regularly lurk on your website because I admire your writing style Psgel. I think what you’ve been doing from when you started till now has been amazing and it’s only more amazing how you’re doing managing this great blog by yourself. It turn it does motivate me to continue blogging and I take a few pointers here and there from you :D Hehehehe… hope you don’t mind~

    But unfortunately it seems blogs that either start small or have lost a fanbase will inevitably die off in the present world where there is already so many great aniblogs out there that have a big concrete fanbase. I guess I’d be lying if I had said it’s not demotivating seeing your site dying slowly because everyone’s comfortable with the sites they are familiar with, there’s no reason for them to search for new blogs nowadays unless that new blog is bringing something really UNIQUE to the aniblogsphere. But my drive for writing is mainly so I could voice my love for anime. After watching a great episode, you just want to run to your otaku friend and shout at his/her face “what did you think of THAT episode ey!?!?!” It’s really as simple as that, but blogging takes on bigger structure than just normal conversation so although my site will die off one day, I’m just gonna let you know that I’ll still be reading your blog and will continue to appreciate your writing even if you don’t post as often as you used to :)

  19. starry says:

    Take like a weeklong break and get adjusted first to your new job. Then when you come back, just merge a bunch of episode rewrites together to make up for what you’ve missed.

    I also second keeping a strict schedule, but also keep 2-3 “free” spots open in case of life overriding your blogging so you can use the free spot to catch up without falling behind. If your free spot goes unused, use it catch up on an older anime you’ve been dying to watch.

  20. Meep says:

    I also have an anime blog with several other writers (as you at least know of, Psgels), but I haven’t been active for weeks. It’s not that I’m disinterested in anime or blogging. I quite enjoy both things. It is just as you said–getting stuck in an evil routine. I go to work, come home and sleep, daydream, look at worthless stuff online, chat about nothing, and play games. Now I’m gonna be starting graduate school and won’t have time for blogging at all.

    As someone else here has said–at least you have a big following. I do think that things would be different for me if I had one. If you need something else, then perhaps scheduling your time and taking on fewer shows per season will work great.

    On the topic of games, I haven’t played them nearly as much as I used to when the N64 and PS2 were new, haha. I’m currently playing Ni no Kuni just because of Studio Ghibli’s label. While it doesn’t disappoint, it is quite repetitive and predictable with the worlds and towns. Have you played this one?

    I also wonder if you’ve ever watched the second season of Mysterious Cities of Gold. I just saw one episode and wished I could understand French lol. It doesn’t quite have the same atmosphere as the old one, but I think I’d still like it.

  21. Meep says:

    For the record, I still check your blog every week despite that I’m not watching anime regularly. It’s like I’m waiting for the day for you to say “OMG I’M MIND-BLOWN BY THIS MASTERPIECE” so that I can finally get excited about something, haha.

  22. Sobakus says:

    The only thing that helps me in these kinds of situations is “Changing the rules”. Taking the break doesn’t work with me – you can’t run forever.. “Will Power” over the will itself is a brain-killer. :) So… if your work or hobby becomes “boring” – change the way it works. Change the rules. Change the form of your blog, your reviews, etc… You can be radical at times like that, if it works for you.

    Also, glad to hear you’re gamer too. :) I lost interest in western games long time ago. The only relatively new western game I loved was “Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP”. Usually I play old Japanese games on NES, SNES, SS or PS1-PS2.

  23. B0Mb0y says:

    Wow, running this blog for almost 8 years, that’s really impressive. I’ve been following this blog since 2011, this being the first anime blog I followed. I follow various different blogs now, but Psgels’ is definitely my favourite. I watch anime that you praise, I stay away from those you rate poorly.

    Even if you do release posts less frequently now, I’m sure your readers will still prowl your site weekly for even one update. Like other readers posted, perhaps change in the way you blog would help you get out of your slump. Or you could watch other media such as English/J-dramas for inspiration and to compare storytelling techniques.

  24. SunDude says:

    Been lurking here since earlier 2008 I think. Probably good time just to leave a comment here in support. Regardless of the outcome, the blogs that you have put out through out the years has been fascinating to read. Been around long enough to see most of the other major anime bloggers go on “extended” hiatuses or stopping, hopefully that wouldn’t become the case for the only blog I still check so far.

    From personal experience, I typically get out of “slumps” but just getting to the worst of it and eventually I just get over it. So maybe it’s best to actually take some time off away from all of this and hopefully that’ll be enough recover your interest to fuel your blogging in the years to come.

  25. icovoc says:

    I like how this post is bringing out all the lurkers! (Including me.) I have a feeling there are quite a few, who have been following this blog pretty consistently for years.

  26. kero says:

    mmm maybe accept that you wont be blogging as much, reduce expected output and stick to that? i think that takes the psychological pressure off.

  27. Deadlight says:

    Recently, I’ve realized that I’ve also had a hard time with posting for my blog.

    I think many of the comments posted have already given you a lot of great advice already so I’ll keep my advice short.

    In a nutshell, you’ve been doing episodic reviews for a while now and the routine of it might becoming really stale. I know for me that it been quite hard to write a short review on only one episode so I think it’s best if you try posting something new on your blog.

    Continue with your episodic reviews, but maybe try some editorials. Write about an aspect of anime or anything related that really gets your interest. Maybe dedicate a post to an anime studio or a director or writer. Maybe write up a full review for an anime you watched before you started bloggin. Something fresh might be easier and more interesting for you to blog about. It’s not like your readers will be enraged if you started posting posts other than episodic reviews.

    I hope some of what I said might help. :)

  28. petran79 says:

    8 years is a very long time (almost as long as Anipages!). I recall reading your review of Porphy a few years back. That series took some time to get translated completely by Licca and your blog was the only resource for me to follow the series.

    Thanks for your trouble.

    Even if it is impossible for me to watch all new anime series, this blog is quite helpful in what to see and what to avoid.

    If you are under time pressure, I’d suggest focusing on the series you like and present a brief summary of the rest of the series and their scores. In case they have an episode you like, you can devote more text.

    I dont think repetition is so serious as you present it to be. Also about the lack of time. Better devote 30 minutes that are full and creative, rather than waste two hours writing the same things all over again. The interaction with other people and discussions in your job and elsewhere does wonders. Even more than posting in forums.

    that will benefit you in the long run.

    About video games, I play different genres. Mostly arcade based games. Sonic All Star Racing as well. It is very fun. Also sometimes with my brother for half an hour play Street Hoop and League Bowling on MAME and also some fighters on PC. I also play sometimes online fighters, casually that is.

    I dislike the Rainman games. One platformer I liked was Dust: An Elysian Tail and A Walk in the Dark. I prefer more gloomy platformers….

    Another game we played with my sister was The Cat Lady. Presentation-wise it was one of the best games I’ve encountered.

    I’d also play adventure games but unfortunately I dont have the mental stamina to explore puzzles and riddles anymore

  29. mel says:

    1) Transform all goofing-off websites to RSS feeds. This stops you from wasting time to check them xtimes a day.
    2) Clean up your RSS feed reader. Go for quality instead of quantity.
    (There was a essay I read in how to stop wasting time in following news sites. It is not worth knowing every new headline as fast as possible but to actually think about the topics, the big pictures. News alerts won’t help there but books do.)
    3) Take good care of yourself. Goofing off/ procrastinating means that I am unhappy and/ or am hiding away from a problem. Realizing this suddenly turns my mood for the better.
    4) Wasting time is fine sometimes. Be proud about it :D.
    5) Stop seeing reduced interest as a bad thing. When you reduce your interest in X, you have more energy for Y – whatever this will be.
    6) When you realize, you are goofing off at the pc, switch it off and do nothing. Boredom helps me to realize what I really, really want to do in this moment.

    .. And some people set themselves a timer to switch of the pc at a certain time or get a pop up with “your surfing time is over for today” :D.

    And thanks for the blog :). :D

  30. JCB says:

    take a break, do something different. burnout is nature’s way of tell you you need a change.

  31. Nicole says:

    Hi! I’ve been following your blog for a few years now and just wanted to let you know that even though i’ve never left a single comment or chat, I really appreciate your posts and love reading your reviews! And just wanna say…Thank u. So please continue posting! :)

  32. Ant says:

    Perhaps you should ask your viewers why they read your blog. I saw what some others said about having an audience not always being enough, but you might need a reminder about why exactly you have an audience in the first place.

    I don’t come for the reviews most of the time. Sure, every season when you do the season rundown I come here instead of going through the episodes myself. But I come here for the prose. It isn’t that you’re a fantastic writer (though that too), as much as how your personal accounts of various episodes amuses me.

    “Did the creators really do that?” you ask, and I feel vindicated for feeling the exact same thing. “The detail and cultural references in this are amazing!” you gush, and I feel like I have a comrade feeling the same things. And every “short synopsis” you do of a series is so simplistic and yet so simple that I always chuckle a bit, even now that I’m used to them.

    And in between the near-professional understanding of the anime creation process, your infectious passion for anime, your jokes, your insights, and your objective reviews, there is the occasional bit of petulance: “Kyoani annoy me at times. I mean, they employ some fantastic animators and they’re superb at keeping up a crisp and consistent animation quality, but they just keep making shows I don’t care about.”

    And that’s really what I come for. You give great information, yes, but so does Wikipedia. You give reviews, yes, but so do a dozen other blogs. What I come back for is your wit and your willingness to be human and jovial about your reviews, even after so many years of maintaining this blog.

    <3

  33. JCD says:

    Seeing this post right now just lets me realize something, and it feels like you talked out of my soul. I used so much of my free time I could be productive in with browsing SHIT on the internet. Since I met you last year, I quit my job and went traveling for half a year – it felt way longer than that and every day was just so eventful which made me wonder how I could spend weeks at home pretty much doing nothing in the past.
    But eventually money runs out and you have to find a job again. I’m working in New Zealand right now and see myself falling into the same scheme again – work, come home, eat, browse SHIT, sleep, repeat.
    I conclude that it’s just something a day job drives you to, and the only way to prevent that is to not do that job. As for me, I only view mine as a method to earn money so I can go traveling again.

    On the other hand, I “waste” my browsing time on wikipedia and wikitravel quite often, which is not that useless – I needed some of that knowledge on one point or another haha.

    And even with decreased post frequency, your blog remains AWESOME. I kept watching anime on the road on long bus or train trips and without you highlighting good series I would’ve stopped long ago. From The New World, JoJo and Aku No Hana were series I loved and wouldn’t have considered watching without you posting about them.

  34. moochi2000 says:

    Long time ago I had an awesome site dedicated to Japanese celebrity groups. It was the best thing I ever made online for years and this was produced during my high school years. I graduated from high school and realized I had to do well in University. My fandom for the Japanese celebrities quickly went down to a 0 and before you know it, the site was gone. I’ve tried to create blogs afterwards but they just keep failing because I had no time. Recently I moved into rural Alberta and found myself EXTREMELY bored so I started a blog again. It’s starting to get some attention and I update whenever I can.

    In conclusion, you should do what is best for you. If posting 3 entries per week is what makes you sane, then do that. You are probably aware of this, if you choose to totally stop updating your blog…you WILL lose your followers. But do what is right for you, you know that we all support the writer’s decision.

  35. jzar says:

    Well said Psgels,

    I know your pain all too well. There are times when I am just not there to move ahead. I am done. All my energy is gone.

    It’s a part of me I don’t like. I can watch me not doing things and want to change it….and I can’t. I can see it so clearly, like a map spread out in my mind. Yet still I don’t have the mud.

    Odd yes? you can see it quite clearly. Change that, use this time. Make the goal for the day, then week, then month…no. I go do something else.

    I fight the good fight and fail. Very tiresome. Climb the wall, and then do it again and again. Then I’m out of gas.

    I have found that I need some real simple task that can get me moving forward. Once stopped it is very hard to gather up your willpower and move forward.

    I don’t think anyone can tell you how you will make the changes you want. I can tell you a few things that work for me.

    Rules to change my bad habits

    1. Do the unwanted task for 5 min….once your 5 min are up you can stop….or keep going.
    2. Remember to enjoy the work process…not the end result. My brain loves new problems to work out and solve…if I can remember the joy it brings.
    3. I Log my time….wasted time, productive time. all the time I use and or waste…right there. I use google calendar…since I’m on the computer anyway.
    4. Sleep early and rise early….really helps me. I love having a 6 am wake up time….I get the whole world to myself.

    Lately, I’ve come to understand this. There are reasons I stop doing things. Important reasons. Reasons that are not easy to explain. I know that parts of me do not exist on this plane….see? Who it the world will understand that.

    Knowing I’m in that bad space can help. Writing about it helps. Blogging about it really helps. Talking to those you trust…helps.

    My rambles most likely won’t help….but you are not alone. Keep reaching out and share with us your thoughts. I, will share some of mine with your.

    peace,

    james

  36. animefan352 says:

    Ahahaha gaming, that I can relate to. So much fun and so much time wasted. I’m not telling you to stop gaming, I love playing when I am in the mood for it. After a long day at work it helps me get my mind off of things to just log in or search for nonsense things on the internet.

    Though I have to admit, with the time I had spent playing games I could have been drawing more fanart (which was somewhat popular when I did post), reading all those new books I’d promised myself I’d read etc. Ultimately, I’d say the choice is yours. Your time is your own and no one can tell you what you should be doing with it. I suppose you have to ask yourself what activities will give you the most satisfaction in the end.

    I also have to give you so much credit: To continue to run a high quality blog with quality posts on many anime titles is quite a feat. To do so for 8 years by yourself is incredible. However, if you were to ever lose interest for any reason, I wouldn’t blame you in the least. People change and so do their interests. However, if you post less frequently I don’t think people would be too upset about it. Whether you shorten your watch list, or just increase the amount of time between posts would probably work just fine. It’s your blog, you should be able to do what you want with it. If you want to take a few days off then take a few days off.

    As you can see, you already have a lot of support from avid readers so just choose what works best for you. ^_^

  37. animefan352 says:

    As for personal experiences: I’m in a transitional period right now so I don’t mind wasting time on my computer if it relaxes me. I am currently applying for graduate programs and applications aren’t due for a while yet. Furthermore, I won’t actually start until next fall. I intentionally gave myself a huge amount of time to just work and relax. I wanted to give myself a break rather than running full throttle into yet another semester of school. It seemed like a good idea to rest so that I would be fully motivated and ready to take on more challenging academics.

    TL;DR: The point of all this is to say that I’ve had more free time lately as a result, but I’ve also been trying to maintain a more balanced lifestyle, besides surfing or playing on the internet all evening. The best solution I’ve found is to exercise or just to do activities by myself that don’t involve other people or being connected online. Watching anime has never really been as distracting or time consuming as surfing the ‘net or gaming has. I see watching anime as being a new experience unto itself due to it’s vivid and creative nature. I find watching 1 anime episode every week from about 5-7 shows doesn’t take up much time in of itself either. I can do it while eating dinner or exercising, etc.

    Perhaps after you watch anime you could hand write your thoughts on paper for your blog before typing them up? I’m not sure what process you use for making blog posts, but at least it will remove you from temptation until you have finished articles.

    It’s easy to get caught up in the internet, it is the information super highway after all. But just imagine what life would be like if you had no connection? If you just had your anime episodes and a word processor? What would you be doing with your time? I try to remind myself of the things I could or would do without that connection and I make a hand written list of the things I would like to do in place of my internet or gaming time. I find this helps me to change up my activities and makes me feel happier and more productive in general.

  38. animefan352 says:

    Forgot to add one more thing: I find I just don’t have time to game when I am taking classes or caught up in work or other activities. Maybe you just need to get caught up in something else that will reinvigorate your motivation?

  39. Arno says:

    Hi Psgels,

    About blogs, to make it short you don’t owe anything to us, we owe you.

    About animes, I have been feeling a “disturbance in the force” for two years. Many new animes strike me as, not exactly bad, but rather half finished.

    Maybe it is time for you to move to another blog, like for instance commenting in depth older animes that you found great in the past.

  40. caesarpk says:

    Hey Psgels –

    I generally never write comments on anything, but I just want to let you know that you have helped me discover in my busy schedule the gems of anime that I can keep raving about. I really, really appreciate you putting your time into this – keep it going!

    :)

  41. ChobitsChi says:

    Hey psgels,

    it’s been long since I posted on your blog, but nowadays I find myself checking out Anime less and less and therefore, your blog as well.

    What I can say about time management is this: In the end, it all comes down to self-discipline and having a healthy rhythm. Once you got the habits down you can start tweaking them. Do what you really like to do (ideally it should further your progress as an individual), but if it doesn’t, then you will need things that you probably dislike to do, but should do (cooking, exercising, reading, getting good at your job etc.), just in order to balance it out.

    I think going to sleep early and reminding myself of cooking whenever I might be able to do so has set the right foundation for me. I tend to waste less time as my productivity is the highest in the morning and early afternoon. I am more aware of a healthy lifestyle which includes progress on social, physical and psychological levels.

    As for what I did:
    NoFap Challenge at reddit – Strengthens your willpower and makes you aware of how much time you waste watching porn and how it is not beneficial to your health (Still ongoing and relapsing, but it’s incredible what just not fapping can do to your time)

    “The tools” – This book might not be amazing, but it helps you realize the 5 most common problems people have in their lives, standing in the way of their happiness and the solutions to those problems (the tools). However, it isn’t easy to use even knowing these, as they require a lot of self-discipline. Still, it is very useful as a summary and eventually you will notice that every self-help book essentially tries to solve these problems, but in different ways.

    Make experiences, no matter the amount of knowledge you have – When it struck me, I was a bit depressed… No knowledge in theory is gonna help you if you have never applied it to the real world. Even the hard and painful ones are useful, for they shape you as a character.

    And lastly, my favorite website I started reading every now and then:
    http://www.artofmanliness.com/
    Check it out!

    As it is quite late, I hope to not have written incomprehensible gibberish…

    Take care mate!

    P.S.: Hopefully I haven’t completely missed the question…

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  • Enka
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 04:03 PM)
    … Now Raku has gotten a Chitoge doppelganger in his harem. What. The. Fuck.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:51 AM)
    Unfortunately for that upcoming season I will only have the sequel to Yahari to watch then at the time =<
  • Emma
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:48 AM)
    @Bam:Its more of a case of a show turning silly and into a guilty pleasure as a result.
    That death ninja show by trigger is upcoming and I don’t think I’ll watch it until the blue rays are out, I’m expecting censoring.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:44 AM)
    @Emma: I have a feeling that Tokyo Ghoul might have the same ailment. There is a pinnacle in suspension of disbelief that is clearly tipped when you have buckets upon buckets of blood and contrived tasteless violence.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:43 AM)
    There was another video with videogame and other anime deaths/gore too but the only ones that left me depressed where clips from that game the last of us. That one death scene in shiki had me in a mix of laughter and sadness.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:38 AM)
    Off topic, but I realized I never watched blood C, another, Higurashi uncensored , I’ve big criticism on those but looking at the deaths uncensored in another and blood C in particular, its taken so far its laughable rather than offensive.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:24 AM)
    @Emma: That’s completely understandable, but these two games are made with casual players in mind and are extremely approachable. They are very light on your system requirements so I really suggest you just torrent them and give it it a try (specially Valiant Hearts in your case). I’ll guarantee you’ll get a kick out of them just as much, if not more, than the best LNs that you have played.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:18 AM)
    That second one though, the inspiration behind it catches my attention. That light hearted tone with dark themes will need to balance itself out well however.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:15 AM)
    I’m not really one for videogames anymore Bam but my brother likes indie games I’ll take note of them and put him onto them then.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 09:10 AM)
    I understand that it might be a little difficult to purchase both if these games, but at least download, play and appreciate them which helps get the word out. I’m sure the game will do a convincing job of making you donate some money to the well-deserved creators (as it did me).

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