Looking Back and Moving Forward (Update Post)

4 years can really change a person…

When I first thought up this blog in late 2017, I gave myself a schedule which I thought would be sustainable. It was just that…for the years where I made it my priority, enough to write until 2 am for several of the round-up posts.

I never saw myself getting into a negative headspace and changing my entire life direction as a result.

I never saw myself going to Japan on a whirlwind shopping tour where I would watch anime in real time, at the cost of wandering around a foreign country on a bus a lot, being in a mental haze (and looking like a bit of an idiot in the proces, haha).

I never saw myself living through a (currently ongoing – stupid Omicron…) pandemic and becoming obsessed with Anime Music Quiz and Hypnosis Mic in the process.

I never saw myself becoming an admin of a Discord server, becoming so attached to the place it became hard to take breaks from, learning more about minorities (maybe too much, at times) and then, in the past month, losing control of myself – a domino effect of my general incompetence at Adulting and a server member temporarily blocking me for something which never happened, leading me to what could possibly have been my worst headspace yet.

It’s been a bit over 4 years in real time, but I feel like I’ve grown an eternity already, especially in 2018 and the past year, where I’ve cycled the tightrope between happiness and being scared, confused, infuriated at myself and at whatever “enemies” I need to tell myself “it’s okay, you’ll get through this”.

“So where does the Spellbook fit in this?” you ask.

Well, my (hopefully well-intentioned) reader, the weekly schedule I made for the Spellbook was the reason I could find out roughly where in time I fell into this negative headspace in the first place, so I’ll give it that much credit. One of the things I discovered, after ranting to someone in their DMs and them trying to talk it out with me, is I suck at physical journalling (I always have, haha), but since my life, after a certain point (and even more so after COVID) moved online, I’m well and truly okay with giving you guys the occasional look into my brain, so long as the boundaries are respected…even if it’s in veiled words and eventually I forget what those vague words hid – as I say in My Reasons Why, things that matter to you now will be but a vague memory in years’ time.

Basically, this post stands in for the fact I neglected to do the yearly celebration of this blog’s existence, simply because I’ve become so detached from the simulcast schedule to warrant a proper post. Also, the fact I’m writing it on Christmas Day in my timezone with a new level of emotional clarity almost makes it feel like I’m turning over a new leaf here, just before the new year properly happens.

“So what happens now?”

Everything I just wrote doesn’t mean the Spellbook is going to become a personal blog, nor is it going to return to the weekly schedule that ran me straight into the ground in the first place. (The Productivity Pile, the Spellbook‘s precedessor, was more of a personal blog than this.) It’s just going to stay as it is right now – I’ll churn out whatever anime/manga content I can get, if it works out enough to produce a post.

Speaking of which, I need to hold myself accountable for some of this ongoing stuff, plus an idea I had recently, and hopefully I should be able to get it done between my other commitments. In descending order of content being likely to see the light of day:

  • #AniTwitWatches (Fate/Stay Night ’06) – Probably my top priority simply because it’s current and it helps me remember it’s the start of a new week. This will be particularly useful, considering uni will start up again come New Year (this time, I have classes when I would normally be on break). I’ve been running this one on Twitter like everyone else is, so see the first link in the next dotpoint for the actual content.
  • the rewatch project – stalled when Tsuritama got taken off legal streaming and moreso with the loss of the streaming platform. Now I’m trying to flip Funimation the biggest bird I can, I can finish the last 5 eps or so at my leisure.
  • 2020/2021 simulcasts – stalled with anime at various stages of finishing. The reason for some of this is I was kicked off a streaming platform I was happy to pay money for and Funimation was buggier than what I had (you can find out more about that in the Fate/ AniTwitWatches thread, which got affected by it in real time). The reason for the rest of it is because I need to be in the right headspace to watch certain anime – typically dramas and romances, where it can be “not the sort of thing I need in this moment” and eventually procrastinated on. For the latter, I found Horimiya became almost unenjoyable when I felt lost regarding the feelings I voiced in this post in the past few weeks.
  • TBR/W posts – stalled at Outbreak Company, due to the aforementioned loss of streaming platform. I just revoked my money from getting into Funimation’s hands not too long ago, so I’m unwilling to trust HiDive with it just yet.
  • The aforementioned new idea – Inspired by Jane’s post, talking about her columns The Manga Shelf and Monthly Manga. (I like Jane’s Manga Shelf column – there are some interesting titles in there for sure – but a lot of it is yuri titles or yuri-adjacent, which I’ve admitted are not my wheelhouse, even less so than your standard heterosexual romance. I’ve been thinking of going through all the manga I own – I have stuff in English and Japanese, so there’s certainly something for everyone, plus I stockpiled a bunch of both digital and physical content due to the pandemic. I don’t know what to title the post series just yet or where to begin (alphabetical order, by romaji if applicable…?), but it’s definitely going to fill the void of WordPress not having much manga content if I go through with it. It’s not a huge priority though, considering I’ll have to read everything again to jog my memory.

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