Since the time I shared my concerns about the state of the blog, I fell anxious about where my blog is headed. Sure, I have tried making some improvements. However, I still feel the bottom is coming underneath me as the pandemic delayed a lot of titles. I fear that this could be the end of my blog. It’s not too surprising since there would be less content to cover, thus fewer comments and likes. The thing that really upset me today is the lack of comments in my recent posts. This is despite the hours put into writing these reviews and even an editorial nobody bothered to leave a like and/or a comment. I became upset that I complained on twitter in several tweets today. I felt that I can’t let this go on any further.
Believe it or not, at some point, some anime bloggers probably faced these issues. When he or she look at other blogs, they have no problem receiving comments and likes. It does make one feel that the effort one put into creating content is going to waste. Of course, this is not the only problem that can cause a blogger to become frustrated and/or even quit for good. Instead of continuing to vent on Twitter and going nowhere as I did this morning, I want to share my thoughts in a rational manner.
Believe it or not, things are not as dire compared to 10 years ago when I started my blog. If you check back in 2009, while the quality of my content was not that good, my posts received a lot of comments. Believe it or not, I was really active in the anime community back then. Besides commenting on other blogs, I participated on anime forums such as AnimeSuki up until around 2014. Nevertheless, the blogosphere was really active, mostly because social media haven’t replaced blogging for most people. Believe it or not, AnimeBlogger was a thing back then and there were many active blogs on that platform.
Sadly, the blogosphere changed in the mid 2010s. AnimeBlogger eventually shut down in 2019. Since then, a good number of blogs have either gone on permanent hiatus or the author gave up all together. This is probably true since most of you probably haven’t heard about the Aniblog Tourney. It’s basically a competition that allows voters to pick the best blog. Sure, it’s a popularity contest, but it gives you the context of the state of anime blogging. Now, probably 90% of the blogs that were in the competition are now dead or on permanent hiatus.
So, why anime bloggers go into hiatus or worse, quitting blogging all together. The reason is simple. Creating content whether it’s a review or an editorial, which requires some research takes time. The same goes with creating any type of content such as recording an audio podcast or video, drawing art, etc. You need to create the draft, make corrections, and then publish it to the world. This is probably why I type all my posts in Microsoft Word first before moving it to WordPress. That way, I can do all the proofreading and utilize the spell and grammar check to improve the quality.
While anime blogging is an enjoyable pastime since I can share my thoughts and interact with others, it’s not without challenges. Yes, one has to make the time to create content. I knew that when I started working on my master’s degree in Information Technology, I couldn’t write posts every day. This is especially the case when I started working full time and working 40 hours a week. Thankfully, my life and work balance is better since I work for a federal government. Regardless, free time is still a luxury.
Eventually, I became complacent by not growing my audience while becoming less active in the community and on social media. It eventually became a self-fulfilling prophecy of endless frustration over the lack of comments and likes. Not only that, I also facing declining Twitter followers.
I have to admit that I become jealous when I look at other blogs that receive more comments. Yes, even more than 50+ in some cases. Meanwhile, I’m having a hard time with most of my posts receiving none. Yes, this is just as frustrating as Aqours receiving 0 votes in a competition. I feel the same way when I receive no appreciation for my work through comments and likes, even on editorials I spent hours writing. Moreover, I also notice this with the declining number of awards I receive, if any at all. Even when I comment on other people(s blogs, the author of the blog do not leave a comment back. It makes me feel that I am not worth their time. Of course, this does not help when I became a hermit thanks to my job search woes.
I do realize that this does not have be this way. Sure, life can be busy, but one can make time to interact with others. I blame myself, especially since I became more introverted since losing my job in 2016 despite being a Leo. I spent a lot of time lurking on the internet instead of interacting with others. However, I can’t lose hope, and I want to regain the trust in others and rebuild my audience. Of course, this means that I need to work even harder to get back where I was 5 years ago before the stagnation began.
Of course, becoming upset over comments, likes, and page views is not the only reason why bloggers go into burnout. There are a variety of reasons. This can range from health issues, lack of time, stress, writer’s block, or lack of topics to write posts about. Of course, time can heal solve some things. One can resolve things like writer block by taking a short break or reading other’s content to look for inspiration. Others like lack of free time, stress from making content daily for instance, not so much. Only a sizable break will resolve these issues, hence a hiatus. Also, some can simply lose the passion of anime blogging for various reasons as mentioned before.
However, going on hiatus, even for longer than a week can hurt one’s blog severely. Besides losing readers and cause page views to drop, it becomes harder to start blogging again. Believe it or not, the longer a blog goes on hiatus, there is a good likelihood that he or she will never return. Even when the author comes back, it becomes difficult to gain the attention of readers when they release new content. People would move on to different blogs, making it harder to stage a comeback.
This is why I am heavily against a long break, even if it’s a week long. I know if I did that, it would become harder to gain back the subscribers, page views, comments and likes. I would rather prefer reducing the frequency of publishing content each week, so I won’t lose the reader’s attention. That way, you can reduce the workload without losing your subscribers and tanking your page views.
In the end, anime blogging or content creation in general is not a sprint, but a marathon. It takes time to build an audience. On the flip side, you can easily lose your audience easily as well. This is especially the case with a hiatus or neglecting the community. I hope people will realize the challenges I face and give me a second chance. Believe it or not, I want to participate more in the anime blogosphere and community. I can’t do it without people commenting on my posts or start interacting with me on social media. It’s obvious that I do not want to feel left out in the blogosphere. I kind of feel this way with the declining followers and lack of comments.
That said, depending on my life situations, I plan to make further improvements to my blog. I am still planning to do art commissions for my new mascot, which will be this blog’s identity. If you know any artists I should ask. I have finally received the first payout from the ads, which will cover this. Either way, I plan to have this done sometime during fall of this year.
With that, have you faced any difficulties in regard to anime blogging that caused you to almost burnout? Also, feel free to share ways you have dealt with burnout, writers block and lack of content to write about in the comments. If you like what I wrote, please show your support by liking and leaving a content. ¶