New Year, New Goals, Same Team | State of the Site
Greetings, Internet! Let’s ring in the new year with some fast updates and resolutions!
2019 in Review
So let’s start with the easy part. What did 2019 look like for us? Speaking from a site-wide perspective, it was actually pretty productive in a few ways while not quite as much as we’d have liked. Real-life complications kept delaying our progress on a lot of things and, while I’d go as far as to say the year was ultimately a success, there’s a lot of stuff we just weren’t prepared for.
Our progress on Burning Sky has been mostly solid. But we’re not as far as we’d have liked to be… really across the board. We’re starting to pick back up and we’ve recently had a meeting discussing how we’re going to pick up the pace behind the scenes to get caught up to our goals from last year. We’ve just got to take this more seriously than we had been. That’s all.
In regards to Bulletoon, 2019 was pretty much a slam dunk. Revitalizing the show with a bunch of whole new episode formats for us felt really good. Like the year-end episode said, we’re proud of what we were able to make. Allowing the show to be more of a dialogue. A conversation. And you guys seemed to really like that! Unfortunately, there’s still the sleeping giant that is COPPA, looming over us. Because YouTube screwed up, we’ve been made to suffer the consequences of their arrogance. We don’t know whether our channel will be particularly hurt by this. The “guidelines” have been slightly updated, but not enough to alleviate the worry over the issue. Let’s be clear. We’ve never made this show with the intention to draw in kids. If kids watch it, that’s beyond our control. But I created this show in college with the intent to make something that I – an adult, mind you – would enjoy watching. The show has only evolved since then, and I couldn’t be happier with it. With the exception of Pokemon, none of the anime we cover is aimed at children. None of the content we create, period, is aimed at children. So will this hurt us? I have no idea. Hopefully, it won’t because I don’t want to have to move the show to some other platform. At least not until we can afford to have a player exclusively made for our own business.
What about the site, itself? Well, that’s been a mixed bag. A lot of things we wanted to do didn’t really get done. But we also had a lot of fun this year with another few rounds of Anime TKO, which was fun. I got to cover Soul Eater all Summer, and that was a blast. And there were a ton of great anime airing throughout the year. But, in the latter end of the year, it became apparent that I kinda burnt myself out and desperately needed to take a step back from regular reviews and stuff. Will I come back to it? Yeah, probably. After this Winter’s TKO, maybe. But taking a break from the reviews has been kinda nice and allowed me to get more work done in other areas. I don’t really like feeling pressured to watch things since it’s such a time investment and I can’t be certain what kind of mood it’ll leave me in. So I’ll have to figure out a style that works for me. Because having episode reviews up whenever I feel like it isn’t really gonna work out.
Now, I can speak for no one aside from myself, but this year was generally pretty good. Unfortunately, I hit some very dark moments towards the end. But it gave me a reason to sort of step away for a bit to work on myself and that led to my creating my personal blog which has allowed me to just… talk. Let’s be clear. This site? The one we’re on, right now? Where you’re reading this? This is a business. It’s a job. It’s fun and I enjoy doing it, but it’s work. I very intentionally keep myself out of things, here. Most times, you’re getting my “character,” not me. And that’s entirely by design. We have a brand – fun interactions between witty characters talking about geek stuff. My natural personality isn’t conducive to that idea so I invented one. But with my blog I can treat things like exactly that – a blog. And it likewise serves as a reminder that I’m an actual human being, for anyone who might’ve thought me unapproachable, before, for whatever reason. And it was a good move.
Looking to 2020
So what’s the plan for this year? Well, that’s pretty easy. I’ve made it pretty clear that I just don’t like the concept of “new years resolutions.” It feels like it creates unnecessary pressure. So I’m just going to say what our goals for the year are. If we don’t hit all of ’em, oh well. But I think we’ll be fine. So let’s start with the obvious.
- Burning Sky. Okay. So here it is. This isn’t an official announcement of anything, but here’s some information for you. We’re aiming to begin releasing the chapters of the first book in late February. That’s all I’m going to say on the subject for now because there will be an update post within the next few weeks that provides all the details.
- PROJECT ACADEMIA isn’t a priority because it’s a personal passion project. But I find it kind of interesting. Because this is probably the first time I’ve been working on multiple projects simultaneously that I felt equally eager about both. This one is most likely going to drop after Burning Sky first releases. It’ll be on my own personal blog first, for anyone who’s interested.
- Bulletoon will hopefully come back in early February with an 8-episode season as we get out backlog together. YouTube willing, the show will keep going strong for as long as we’re able to produce it.
I’m going to be honest. This year is very probably going to be light on ordinary anime reviews until we find our rhythm on the original content front. But when we do, I’m sure we’ll be back to our old pace and crackin’ with tons of new stuff to share with you guys.
Any Big Announcements?
Actually, yes. And here that is. Over the course of the next week or two, the site is getting an overhaul. The branding and all that is going to be pretty much the same. But we’re changing the theme and archiving most of our review posts. There will be an actual archive tab in the dropdown where you can look at all of that stuff. But the site’s doing a bit of a soft refresh. We want the site to begin using a wider, more reader-friendly layout, especially as we’re going to start featuring a lot more original content on here, as well as longer posts. That and we don’t like how our current layout clips the titlecards. So expect the site to see some pretty radical changes very soon.
And that’s everything! Welcome to 2020, everyone! Let’s make it an awesome year. ‘Til next time!
Keep up the Awesome!