And Another Thing…

The Short Version

OOPS, I DID IT AGAIN

I PLAYED WITH YOUR BLOGROLL

GOT LOST IN THE ‘SPHERE

go here

The Long Version

This was my original post:

Inevitable post, inevitable result, inevitable blog death.  Fall semester means tons and tons of work, and I will not have much time to watch anime, let alone blog about it.  I might not even have enough time to play Team Fortress 2 every day.

I’ve spent a good amount of time thinking about how to deal with my aniblogging death.  In doing so, I’ve read the “final” posts of bloggers like Totali, Omni, Gargron, Omisyth, Otou-san, etc.  Omni’s last post is the front-runner for the most-commented aniblog post in history, and totali’s is the ballsiest.

Yet Omni is the only one who logged off for good.  Totali is still around.  Like [pre-2010] momotato, he’s making a post a year.  0rion, Gargron, 7, canon, etc. gradually died out. Otou-san came back after less than a year (lol).  Crazydave, Omisyth, and hundreds more are still active on Twitter.  Owen and mefloraine got hitched and left their blogs for a more romantic Twitter relationship.  2DT came back after a week, and rumors of his tokidoki balloony death were greatly exaggerated.

I’m not going to walk any of these paths.  The road less taken?  More like the road never taken before.  I’ll need a scythe and a torch, ’cause I’m blazing my own trail.

I’ll be back.

Cool, ain’t it?  But what’s cooler is that I’m metaing on my meta of somebody else’s meta.  You can call me Meta “S-tier” Knight.

What path was I talking about?  Well, I considered going anonymous and rebooting my blogging career.  When I started Misaki/Yukko Thursday, I wanted to become a better and more respected blogger.  Of course, you can see how this turned out.  But my fatal flaw was carrying over my Twitter account, since my old followers became my new readers and my old fame brought me my new fame. People don’t recognize me as misaki or flomu – they recognize me as the Unlimited Blog Works guy.

What makes a good blog

In the distant past, I had something akin to a regular blog, where I posted shitty episodics, shitty editorials, shitty shit, and other shit.  It wasn’t the well-blended mixture of a smoothie – rather, it was the chunky residue of vomit.  So in time, I wanted a clean slate to work on – a new blog.  But without direction or organization, this was a plan doomed from the start: my many blogs have been similar in consistency and chunkiness.

In my opinion, the best blogs (and the ones that survive) are the clean, organized ones.  Sea Slugs, Star Crossed, and RandomC have strict guidelines on post formats, and it works for them.  Anime Instrumentality is straight-out music.  2DT, Yi, and the duo at Altair & Vega have guidelines for their posts.  My old nemesis Kurogane doesn’t stray from his short reaction-type posts.

On the other hand, mefloraine turned to episodic blogging and it went straight into the gutter.  Kielmaru’s shit storm wasn’t destined for greatness.  Anime^2/We Love Maids, RIUVA, Epic Win and many more went on a downward spiral of confused, disorganized posts.

In the end, it comes down to “is this blog/blogger memorable?”  And for blogs which sport posts going in every direction, the answer is no.  You may have a voice, but people don’t remember voices as much as they do the way your blog looks and how you churn out your posts.  A fickle blog will attract different readers at different times, while a relatively stable blog will attract a stable, growing readerbase.

How this relates to _____ Thursdayism

I realized this when I made Misaki Thursday, so I wanted a new mechanic that would keep me in line.  And my solution was: blog on Thursdays.  This was a very simple decision, but it made everything fall into place.  With so much time to write a post, I finally figured out what I liked to write: meta… and sarcastic, cynical meta, at that.

But college is rearing its ugly head, and I’ll be off in HARDCORE WORK land for the next few months.  There is simply no time to be writing long metaposts on Thursdays.

I considered my choices:

  1. Wait until winter break, and blog for a month then.
  2. Wait until winter break, and start a new blog.
  3. Don a new persona and blog irregularly, then surprise everyone!
  4. Blog irregularly on a new blog.
  5. Make the ultimate blog.

I threw out #1 and #2 quickly.  I may have minimal free time, but I know the urge to blog very well.  #3 looked appetizing – I even played around with the idea back in December 2010.  But in the end, I wanted to build on “flomu” rather than construct a different online personality and combine the two.

#4 and #5 were the real struggle.  In the past 24 hours, I’ve made two gmail accounts, a new wordpress account, and two new blogs (which I’ve deleted).

Why a new blog?  Didn’t you just say that it “was a plan doomed from the start?”

Let me get this out there first: I am proud of Misaki Thursday.  My posts may have alienated some of my readers, but I feel that most of them are similar in nature.  Each post was painstakingly written over the course of many hours, and the results aren’t too shabby.  I hit just over 5000 views over these past three months and received 350+ comments over 15 posts (and some hidden pages!).  People read what I wrote, and I thank all of you for that.

I wanted to keep this an isolated bubble of my success, and to make more isolated bubble-blogs, each with a different style and focus.

While I knew I couldn’t keep this blog (come on, look at that URL.  I’m not going to be posting on Thursdays anymore, anyway), I knew that I couldn’t keep up these bubble-blogs for long.

After racking my brain over this for some time, my solution was to mash up #4 and #5, creating an ultimate blog with categories to separate each blogging style (for example, the material on this blog will be filed under “Misaki Thursday”).  Hopefully, this will work.  And hopefully, it will solve many issues.  Including my lack of blogging time.

tl;dr From now on, you can find me at “Ultimate blog” http://flomu.wordpress.com.

P.S.: I got And Another Thing… yesterday at Borders.  It was $2.99.


18 Comments on “And Another Thing…”

  1. kevo says:

    I understand this sentiment, and it’s rather profound. I don’t like to share this often, but since this time last year I’ve felt like my blog has gone to shit. From August to November 2010, I literally lost 75% of my readership. I understand why — less time for blogging (new girlfriend, ridiculously busy semester at school, new job, you name it). One less draft per post means sub-par writing. Less time to think about posts means half-hearted content. I took the easy way out half the time and resorted to crappy episodic blogging. Above all, I lost structure. I lost a lot of the reason people originally read me. I thought I could fool myself that I was putting work into Desu ex Machina, but you can’t fool readers. You could have easily named me alongside We Love Maids (whom I beat in the Aniblog tourney xD) and Epic Win: it was a downward spiral of confused, disorganized posts.

    I’ve been slowly recovering since, looking for that spark of creativity that I had earlier in my career. It’s this odd combination of patience and effort. I constantly ponder if I should try to focus my blogging more, but I’m not sure if my style of writing can handle one type of post for eternity. Sometimes I really do want to write an episodic post. Sometimes I really do just want to fag about an anime I like. I think one of the reasons I decided to start Anime Power Rankings is to give my blog a semblance of structure. Every Sunday, APR are out. Hopefully, people will start knowing me as the Anime Power Rankings guy instead of “that random aniblogger that once posted how to make Mapo tofu”.

    This has been far longer of a post that I had originally planned. flomu, never regret anything you write in good conscience. Always take pride in your writing. The author’s pride reflects the heart of a piece of writing. The pure effort and care you put in your posts is clear and easy to see. You are a far better blogger than I have been these last few months, and you will definitely be successful. as long as you keep trying, you will definitely find success.

    • flomu says:

      First of all, thanks for the comment. I was afraid that nobody would read this post and give a serious reply (half of the reason why it’s a hidden subpage), but you delivered!

      I used to read your blog way back when, but college caught up to me in Fall 2010 and I disappeared for several months. My downfall came in Summer 2010, after I lost to Kurogane in the ABT. I didn’t feel particularly hurt by the loss (especially after beating Shit Storm), but it must’ve affected my blogging somehow. My path was about as crappy as yours, and I kept switching blogs to boot!

      …but I’m not sure if my style of writing can handle one type of post for eternity.

      Yeah, I struggled with this quite a bit. I’ve had a very long history of ambitious projects vs. disappointing realities (showing up in school, gaming, and anime blogging), so even if I forced myself to write meta on Thursdays, I wouldn’t be able to keep it up for long. But this is exactly what makes a popular and well-liked blogger. If somebody mentions Baka Raptor, you know they’re talking about that obnoxious Maddox fan. “Author” and “meta aniblogging” are practically interchangeable. Sea Slugs, Star Crossed, and RandomC are the episodic veterans.

      In a way, I want to be talked about like I talk about these blogging giants. I want people to remember me like you and I remember Epic Win.

      My solution, however, is another elephant up the ass. It’s an extremely ambitious project, and I know I’m not going to be able to complete it. But I can try, and hopefully somewhere along the line, people will recognize me as a great blogger.

      This has been far longer of a post that I had originally planned. flomu, never regret anything you write in good conscience. Always take pride in your writing. The author’s pride reflects the heart of a piece of writing. The pure effort and care you put in your posts is clear and easy to see. You are a far better blogger than I have been these last few months, and you will definitely be successful. as long as you keep trying, you will definitely find success.

      Thanks. This means a lot to me.

      Though I may say otherwise at other times, I am very proud of the posts I’ve made on this blog. I’ve never put so much effort into blogging before, and I’m lucky to have readers who appreciate my work. Even if they don’t like Nichijou as much as me.

      On the flipside, don’t pull an Emperor J on me! He’s been complaining about the state of his blog for the past few months, but his persistence in blogging LoGH is amazing!

      Back to Desu ex Machina: Your comeback hasn’t gone unnoticed! I like to think of my blogroll as an exclusive club of blogs that I really enjoy reading, and not all of my internet buddies gets on there (like MushyRulez and Dez/8bmp). I like reading your posts, so keep ‘em coming!

      new girlfriend

      ಠ_ಠ

  2. E Minor says:

    People don’t recognize me as misaki or flomu – they recognize me as the Unlimited Blog Works guy.

    I’m gonna be honest — I’ve never heard of the “Unlimited Blog Works guy.”

    What makes a good blog

    Eh, this sounds hipsterish, but why should we be so concerned about being remembered? As far as I’m concerned, blogging is just fun. Organizing my thoughts about anime is just fun. Watching anime is just fun. People nowadays are getting so bent out of shape about the state of this and the state of that, form and structure, style and gimmicks — it just feels like everyone’s trying to outdo each other in blogging so much that the original purpose has been lost: to talk about anime. I don’t care if I’m pegged as doing nothing but episodics. My goal is to focus on the anime in front of me.

    • flomu says:

      Numberss_ (on twitter) said it when I first made Misaki Thursday, and it kind of caught on (at least with me!). Besides, a lot of people know me as the man of many blogs – the title doesn’t really matter. Though UBW sounds cool.

      It’s great that you have that mentality! That kind of spirit is what takes a blogger far. I, on the other hand, need people to acknowledge my blogging to move on.

      While my personality is somewhat laid-back, I am at heart a tryhard guy who wants to be the best. If I’m publishing something publicly, I want it to be top-notch stuff that people can point at and say, “look at that. Look at the quality of those posts.” Blogging is a fun hobby, but for it to be rewarding, I need to know that my time hasn’t been wasted.

      Besides, I’ve grown more interested in blogging than in anime.

      tl;dr it’s a personality thing (?)

      Eh, this sounds hipsterish

      Don’t worry, everybody already knows you’re a hipster.

  3. E Minor says:

    I am at heart a tryhard guy who wants to be the best. If I’m publishing something publicly, I want it to be top-notch stuff that people can point at and say, “look at that. Look at the quality of those posts.”

    Maybe I’m being naive, but I’d like to think most of us are trying hard with our blogs, mon ami. I think I put forth the best possible effort I can muster when I hit the Publish button. It’s just that if I’m not well remembered, so be it. I mean, I’m not going to pretend as if I don’t care when people say nice things about my blog — it’s a nice feeling — but there are a lot of idiots out there. If a bunch of idiots don’t remember me, who cares?

    Don’t worry, everybody already knows you’re a hipster.

    Yeah, I’ve gotten this from other bloggers. I don’t particularly understand where the sentiment is coming from, but hey, they’re entitled to their opinions and so are you.

    • flomu says:

      Maybe I’m being naive, but I’d like to think most of us are trying hard with our blogs, mon ami. I think I put forth the best possible effort I can muster when I hit the Publish button. It’s just that if I’m not well remembered, so be it. I mean, I’m not going to pretend as if I don’t care when people say nice things about my blog — it’s a nice feeling — but there are a lot of idiots out there. If a bunch of idiots don’t remember me, who cares?

      Ah, sorry about that. I guess it sounded like it, but I didn’t mean to say that others weren’t trying hard!

      Well, I believe that bloggers write for their readers and for themselves. So there’s a direct correlation between having lots of readers and feeling really good about your blog. Likewise, I think that being remembered leads to the same feeling in the long run. I could care less if the Moe Coalition or the OEG guys remember my name, but if you and kevo and other readers of my blog remember me and my blog(s), that’d be awesome.

      Another way of looking at it: I could also just want to make an impact on the aniblogging community. It’s hard to rise up and become a major-league blog like Sea Slugs. But the challenge is exciting!

      On being hipster: You and your French! And your dressed-up cat avatar!

      • E Minor says:

        Well, I’m not gonna remember all of your blogs so you better stick to one!

      • flomu says:

        Bah! Just remember flomu.wordpress.com and call it flomu, because I’m going to be changing the title quite a bit!

        EDIT: also, thanks for commenting. I’m saying this a lot in the comments here, but I didn’t expect people to give me many serious comments. To receive long-ish comments from three of my readers and friends is awesome!

  4. Seinime says:

    Hey, remember your original name fangzhao? Nah, that’s probably not your true name since I only started following you during that time. At that time my friend kept MSNing me about you, including the words “LOL” and “hilarious” and “post”. I read a bit of your posts during that time, but I only realized that I should actually bookmark it during the ____ism ages, since I wasn’t a big fan of GRSI back then.

    I’ve had too many ups and downs akin to a roller-coaster in my blogging. One time I was using crappy episodicals, one time I was writing too much, and now I still try to find that balance between well-expanded and tl;dr. Maybe like this 2DT guy I’ve been recently reading.

    Sometimes you can get caught up in stats, comments, and the like. I was still a bit of a kid-in-teenagers-body back then, so I revelled along with others in the x amount of views/subscribers post. And then you forget why you’re writing altogether. Sure, you want the audience to enjoy your posts, but there’s no point if you’re not enjoying it yourself. Like there’s no point in pleasing others if you’re deeply miserable down inside yourself, something I realized until later.

    I can relate to kevo; I should’ve found him sooner. Now it’s just rekindling the lost spark, and finding that passion for blogging again, at your own schedule, at your own pace. I schedule my posts now, something I didn’t do back then, and it helped alot. Scrambling to get a sub-par post out back then is something I regretted, as it only hastened the burnout I felt when I was blogging. I hope to achieve a mix of meta and simple aniblogging that doesn’t leave people scratching their heads when they read it. I only hope my school schedule and better planning can accommodate it. Should be fine when I throw out the repetitive MMORPGing and excessive gaming.

    I really hate it when people say “blog in your own style” sometimes, really. Style comes from voice. And voice comes from personality. And I have a complex personality, almost like a multiple personality disorder. It feels like being the broken shards in a mirror sometimes, since I am a different person depending on what circle you’re in. It’s not like I want this to happen, where its more like a social acceptance thing, with mixed in fear and constant rejection when I was a child. So when it comes to blogging with a voice, which voice do I use? What style can I make? I still struggle with this most of the time, and I hope blogging more can somehow find my actual voice.

    Issues aside, you should always have that feeling of satisfaction after you hit the publish button. If it feels like empty blabber, then scrap it I say. A dead post and no post don’t really share a difference, in my opinion. Keep up your style and screw what other people say. You are you. Ganbatte! I need to reflect my blog name more.

    • flomu says:

      At that time my friend kept MSNing me about you, including the words “LOL” and “hilarious” and “post”.

      Wow, I wish he would have commented! In my ____ism days, I assumed most of my hits were from spambots and people looking up “Mikoto Misaka” on Google Images. But it seems that I had a few fans, and I’m really grateful to them!

      Sometimes you can get caught up in stats, comments, and the like. I was still a bit of a kid-in-teenagers-body back then, so I revelled along with others in the x amount of views/subscribers post. And then you forget why you’re writing altogether. Sure, you want the audience to enjoy your posts, but there’s no point if you’re not enjoying it yourself. Like there’s no point in pleasing others if you’re deeply miserable down inside yourself, something I realized until later.

      I used to be obsessed with hits (the hit counter widget is one of the worst decisions a blogger can make!), but now I’m obsessed with comments. I’ve realized that I can’t be eyeing my hits every minute, but I also can’t ignore them and claim that I’m blogging for myself (because I’m really not!).

      My solution was to respond to hits and comments in a reactionary way. I write what I want to write, and then see if my readers liked it. If they didn’t, I’d try something else, but nothing that strays too far from what I actually like to write. I have to maintain the balance between “If you don’t like my blog, don’t read it!” and “What do you want me to write about?”

      A good example is my relationship with sinophile. He commented on a lot of my posts one day, praising my blogging style. Later, he asked for more personal posts. As much as I wanted to satisfy an avid reader’s desire, I wasn’t going to go too far from the idea of an “anime blog.” So I tried to incorporate more personal elements into my posts, but it might not have worked out correctly.

      Hey, at least I tried!

      I really hate it when people say “blog in your own style” sometimes, really. Style comes from voice. And voice comes from personality. And I have a complex personality, almost like a multiple personality disorder. It feels like being the broken shards in a mirror sometimes, since I am a different person depending on what circle you’re in. It’s not like I want this to happen, where its more like a social acceptance thing, with mixed in fear and constant rejection when I was a child. So when it comes to blogging with a voice, which voice do I use? What style can I make? I still struggle with this most of the time, and I hope blogging more can somehow find my actual voice.

      I can relate very well. Although I know my own personality pretty well, I can’t help but don a new face in front of new people. My closest friends know me as the crazy Asian guy who isn’t afraid to do the dumbest things. My professors know me as that guy who’s socially awkward but likes physics (hopefully). People I meet for the first time know me as Ordinary Asian Dude #12. And I talk about different things with different people. I am more reserved with some people and more outgoing with others.

      Regrettably, I am painfully awkward and shy with most anibloggers (as I’ve found out with my interactions with canon_chan and the people at AX).

      So I’ve equipped a new mask, somewhat close to my overall personality, to use as my online persona. It’s my own style, yet it’s something different than how I appear to everybody else I know.

      So I don’t think you should try to find a “real” voice to use. They’re all real, and they’re all facets of your personality. It’s tough to fit an entire personality into a blog – hell, look at me! I’m a troll who loves talking personal! Just keep saying what you want to say, and the voice will come in time.

      Issues aside, you should always have that feeling of satisfaction after you hit the publish button. If it feels like empty blabber, then scrap it I say. A dead post and no post don’t really share a difference, in my opinion. Keep up your style and screw what other people say. You are you. Ganbatte! I need to reflect my blog name more.

      Yes, definitely. The only post I wasn’t proud to publish on this blog was the Naruto Shippuuden one. I originally wanted to make it a total trollpost, but chickened out, thinking that my readers would seriously believe that I have a burning passion for Naruto. The result was a half-assed post full of half-assed bullshit. Bah!

      BUT… that’s in the past!

      Thanks for the comment, appreciate your views.

    • Mushyrulez says:

      :( That fifth paragraph is like a direct insult to me

      Anyways, that’s the thing – a voice isn’t /a voice/ – it doesn’t always stay the same. I /think/ I might have something of a voice now (I’m either that guy that writes things IN PROPER PUNCTUATION and sounds like he’s trying to sound INTELLIGENT, or the guy who capitalizes things randomly and says things that don’t make any sense), but the thing about voices is that you can’t force them. If you do, your voice won’t be yours anymore – you can’t act like a person that you aren’t. Maybe you can create an artificial voice for a month or two but a year? Five years? At the end, you can’t /not/ blog in your own style – it’s physically and mentally impossible (also, it’s harder to not blog in your own style than it is to blog)

      tl;dr: I AM MAD MAD MADRID

      • flomu says:

        Fifth paragraph of my comment? “Hey, at least I tried!”

        JOE DAN

        There has to be some balance between your “innate” voice and your “manufactured” voice. I believe that people DO have a “voice” which is a combination of many different voices.

        But bloggers are required to limit their voice to a certain tiny range. Just like people don’t want to read an anime blog that covers EVERYTHING (news, anime, manga, figures, etc.), people don’t want to listen to a guy who appears inconsistent and dynamic. I read 2DT because he is constantly sortakindaacademic. But now that digiboy has written a series of SHITTY POSTS (Tokidoki balloon boy), my opinion of 2DTeleidoscope (the man) has dropped a notch and my opinion of 2DTeleidoscope (the blog) has dropped enough notches to make a dozen Minecrafts.

        But still, this voice isn’t artificial! Even if you force yourself to write a certain way, you made the decision to write that way over some other, less “you” way. blah blah more words

      • Mushyrulez says:

        replying to seinime ;____;

  5. I remember finding your blog when searching for something on Setsuna. Boy was that a disappointment. I want my Setsuna.

    Anyway, I don’t have anything particularly insightful to say on blogging. I don’t blog a lot after all. I will say that I think you write interestingly and I read about everything you post.

  6. […] Forget the audience for a second, did you like what you wrote? […]


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