Finding Your Own Style is Hard

Finding Your Own Style is Hard

This is somewhat of an extension of my last post, where I said I might make another if could I felt like it. Well, I think there’s some stuff I can elaborate on more about the break and why it happened, and it all kind of goes into one main point I think a lot of content creators of all kinds have struggled with: your style. A lot of us are told to be ourselves, and we’ll eventually find success. I think that’s true, but there’s more to it. Think of it as a part 2. Also, that’s why Houtarou is in both.


What does it mean to be yourself? How do you create like you would? What makes good content you can be happy with? Faced with this question, we most often look to our peers. Other creators we enjoy ourselves in a similar field and see how they do it. What usually happens is that we then start to copy and take inspiration from that style, even if it doesn’t work for us.

Tired boyo
(It gets to be a bit much)


And that’s what happened to me. The blog never stopped being about whatever the hell I wanted, but it made more of a shift to anime because most of the readers I had gained were from the anime community. So I began to lean more into that, and before I knew it, I became more of an anime blog than what I originally wanted. However, that’s not a bad thing. I actually prefer that.


Through streaming, writing fiction, and the blog, I really have all my creative outlets covered, and I can still write any random thoughts on the blog like this, so it’s really a win win, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t stumbled a lot to get here and had to reinvent many things. Even today, I still don’t know exactly what I want or what exactly my style is for anything, but I’m getting closer.


A fantastic example of one of these fails is the single piece of content I struggled and still struggle the most with: seasonal content on the blog and largely episode reviews. Seasonal content is a big reason I took the break. It was very easy for things to get away from me fast. And once I started to fall behind, everything else crumbled, and I just felt sad. This started happening a few months before the break even.

stressed girl
(Schedules are hard)


It’s so stressful and hard to write things on a schedule. I think most would agree. But it’s especially bad when you have no way to prepare in advance. I feel confident about coming back to the site and eventually doing videos on YouTube because I can prepare content while I make the stuff for next month. It works out really well for everyone. Seasonal content doesn’t allow for that.


People like to read about the episodes and series shortly after they air. And if you wait a few weeks, nobody wants to hear about it anymore. You’re essentially on a very strict time restraint, and episode reviews are the worst for it. I tried to get them out the next day, and I used to do two of these. That means I had two days a week I had to rush out two posts with no real way to prepare or make it easier.


If I had a rough day at work and fell asleep earlier, I was behind. If I was sick and didn’t feel like working on it, I was behind. If I just felt like focusing on other outlets, I was behind. It’s awful, really, and I made way too tight of a restraint on myself. I enjoy them conceptually. They’re fun and do good for views. But they’re way too difficult for me to make.

Yamcha ded
(Footage of me before the break)


I felt defeated, but ultimately, I only started episode reviews in the way I did because that’s what I thought I should do. I saw others doing it, so I followed, and while I did eventually develop my own type of episode reviews, the plan was flawed from the start and eventually fell apart, leading to the break. Because once I was behind, which happened a lot, it just snowballed.


If I could redo it, I would give myself at least 3-4 days from the air date. I think that’s enough of a cushion. I would also only do one series because I can’t personally do two in that style. But other people can. And that’s the biggest takeaway here. Everyone is different. Everyone, even if it isn’t immediately clear to you, has their own style. It’s likely not something they formed intentionally, it just happened, and they nurtured it when it did.


I heard a wonderful thing a few days ago in a video. The best way to tell if you’re being genuine is if you really enjoy what you’re creating and having fun doing it. I think that’s very true, and people will be able to sense that. When you’re genuine, people sense that and you continue to stay genuine as you try new things, you’ll find your style somewhere mixed in. And the truth of the matter is I did not like doing episode reviews or feeling forced with seasonals. I hated it even.

(And this is footage of me now)


That’s why I’m much more excited without them, at least in their current form. I work on a lot of different things, so I need to be reasonable about what goals and promises I set. I very much want to do episode reviews again, but they will not be the way they were before. They may be a few episodes in one, and I may not even finish the whole thing, but I’d like to bring it back in some way.


I think the most important thing is that you enjoy yourself, not just because it’s important you be genuine, but because you should create for yourself. Even if you want others to see what you create, as I’m sure most of us do. I  know I don’t like anyone to look at it if I can’t enjoy it myself. I think there’s a perfect balance somewhere in there that I want to find. And I’ll keep searching until I do.


Thank you very much for reading

Here’s to a great new year! I’m only a month late! Promise a normal post is next.

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