My Online Focus
An old friend, Chris, told me the other day, “Hey, it’s so great you are keeping your shrines online even though you’ve quit that hobby.” I replied, “Thanks! Wait, what?” It occurred to me that although I have an About page, what I hope is clear navigation, and detailed descriptions in each section detailing what you can find on this site, I haven’t really discussed what I’m doing here or what my online plans are. I’ve just kind of been working away and hoping you guys enjoy what I put up. I want to take a minute to talk about where I see the site going, what I enjoy working on and want to continue working on in the future, and give you guys a space to ask questions and clear up any confusion. Having an idea of where I want to go is just as important as knowing where I am.
I see this site having four major focuses: personal blogging, recaps, fan sites, and writing.
Personal blogging is the primary focus of this website. I joined some directories and listed this site as a “personal site” or “blog” rather than a “collective” or “book reviews blog” because that’s what it is before anything else. I see my recaps and fan sites as reactions to fandoms I’m into like Animorphs or Final Fantasy. When school or life is busy and I don’t have time to read books or play games, my work on recaps and fan sites sometimes come to a halt, but personal blogging continues. More important than my fandoms, this website is my reaction to life. It contains my thoughts, my feelings, and my ideas.
Recaps are something that I kind of fell into by accident, but that I really enjoy creating. They are blog entries in the most simple terms, but I see them as reflections and analysis of really old series that I loved as a kid and am experiencing again as an adult. I use them as a means to interact with other fans of the subjects and to reminisce. I’ve found going through these series as an adult is a completely new and unique experience, and I’m picking up on so many things I didn’t pick up on as a kid. Writing about that experience is fun, for lack of a better word. I’m thrilled that so many of you are having fun going through these series again with me.
I’m currently going through three series with my recaps. The primary series as of now is Animorphs because it’s a continuous story, but I intend to throw in a Goosebumps or Fear Street book here and there. When I finish these series, I plan to start other series (I almost used the word “new” instead of “other,” but let’s be real: I’m a 1990s kid through and through. We all know the stuff I love is old as sin).
I want to find a way to rant and rave about favorite video games via a system like my recaps, but I haven’t figured out how I want to do that yet. For now, I have character shrines and fanlistings.
Before I started this blog, I had a collective of character shrines (fan sites) and fanlistings. I kept my favorite shrines and fanlistings online. You can view them on the Sites page. What’s important to note is that I haven’t quit making or working on shrines or fanlistings. Rather, I’m not working solely on shrines and fanlistings like I did for years. Since those were my online focus, my shrines and fanlistings were extremely active. I was constantly updating my existing shrines and was constantly planning new ones. Now that I have my blog and my recaps, which provide new ways to react and interact with things I love, I work on my shrines and fanlistings less. That does not mean my shrines and fanlistings will not receive updates, and it doesn’t even mean that I will never make another one. I uploaded a new layout to my Tidus site two weeks ago, and I actually uploaded a new fanlisting last week. (It’s to Mathematics, which I’m not going to even bother defending because if you’ve read this far, you know how much of a nerd I am already ;)). I even have some ideas for new shrines I’d like to eventually make. The problem here is free time, which is extremely limited while I’m school. My recaps are more active than my sites because writing a recap is so much quicker than designing, coding, and writing for a shrine. It’s a hard truth. It doesn’t mean I love my fan sites less.
Another problem with fan sites is the constantly changing web. A blog is able to survive better in today’s internet climate than a shrine or fanlisting. Another hard truth. I’m constantly looking for ways to present content that I would for a shrine in a medium that is going to be relevant and active today. It’s sort of how my recaps developed. Having said that, I’m a stickler for old habits and old things, and I love the nostalgic feeling of a character shrine, so my existing shrines are up for the long run regardless of how I may eventually come to present new content.
Writing is my final focus, and it’s the one I think I talk about least. Once upon a time I wanted to be a writer. I grew up and realized that I’d need an additional career, and I felt a strong tug to get into teaching. It’s what I’m going to school for now. My passion for writing is still here, though, and I want to get back into it. My Writing page contains some really old (terrible) poetry and my academic essays from college. I am hoping to post more of my work as time goes on. I’m taking a Creative Writing course in Fall. That section should expand a lot around then.
I hope my online focus is a little more clear. Writing this out actually cleared some things up for me, too. It was almost therapeutic. If you have any questions, or if there is something I do or that I used to do that you’d like to see more of, don’t be afraid to let me know! I want to make sure that I not only create content that I enjoy making, but create content that you guys enjoy viewing.