Some Meta About the Writing Process, Another Unboxing Video

Though I prefer not to do meta posts, indulge me for a moment as I reflect over the the writing process. Specifically to dispel one illusion that I had prior to starting Anime Instrumentality: the difficulty inherent in writing.

When I say difficulty, I really do mean it. If there’s one thing that I’ve learned writing all these music reviews, it’s that the writing process never gets easier with time; you’d think it would with 2+ years under my belt. I don’t know how some of my peers in the anime blogosphere deal with it, but I’m always in awe at the folks who can turn out a post every day and still have them be insightful and enjoyable reads. I’m not one of those people, unfortunately, and so, continue to struggle. It’s a long process, though not an unpleasant one (otherwise I wouldn’t be doing it!), but I do encounter those rough patches from time to time. [Read more…]

Two Year Mark: Reflections, Inspirations, and an Unboxing!

Time has a weird way of sneaking up on you sometimes. It’s always moving at the same steady rate, but when you turn around to really keep tabs on it, it already seems to have skipped ahead a few months, leaving you to wonder what exactly you’ve achieved while time went on its merry jaunt.

You might be surprised or shocked by what you see since you can never really where you’ll end up. At least, that’s the impression I’ve gotten writing about anime music soundtracks for this site. When I started, there was no grand, cosmic imperative telling me that “THOU SHALT WRITE ABOUT ANIME MUSIC”; it was borne out of a desire to simply connect the music to the material so as to enrich the anime experience on a more personal level. Because of its subjective nature, there’s really not much concrete stuff to go off of in writing about why I liked or dislike a given song or album and I figured to make the best of it. Early on, I often wondered what the hell I was doing since this seemed like a trivial diversion at best. After all, shouldn’t I be concerned about securing my future through more concrete endeavors like trying to get a job promotion? Why burn my spare time doing this?

My simple answer is that I enjoy sharing the joys that I’ve gotten from listening to anime scores and either visualizing the fantastic scenes before me or just reminiscing fondly upon the series’ unforgettable moments. Soundtracks, particularly those for video games and anime, have been something that has always been with me. While I was younger, armed with a cassette tape, I’d play through Final Fantasy VI just to record the music. Once I got into anime, I’d also pay attention to the background music. I might not be eccentric enough to try to record it, but I suppose this blog is the present-day incarnation of that particular obsession. And I do hope that all of you have been able to glean something out of this effort.

Needless to say, I’ve gotten a lot more than I bargained for, given this blog’s modest beginnings. The opportunities that have popped up through channels like the Eminence Symphony Orchestra which then got me connected to Jayson Napolitano, Patrick Gann and the others at Original Sound Version are the more visible aspects of where Anime Instrumentality has taken me. No less important is the interaction with the anime fans, whether it’s here, on other people’s blogs, or elsewhere, and I’m constantly learning something new each day. Whether you’ve left a short comment calling my attention to a soundtrack that merits a look or introducing music that would otherwise not have reached my ears via MALKeionbu, it’s been a great experience all around. There were some tough times like when I had to balance working life with writing on this blog, but on the whole, it’s been gratifying. I look forward to seeing new faces and palling around with the familiar folks over this coming year.

Anniversaries give me a reason to add something new. Last year, we had the MALKeionbu set up so that it’s become a place for people to hang out and show to others some anime track that’s caught their ear. This year… well, I’m not completely sure, but the staff and I are working on something and with due time and effort, I do hope to see it materialize soon.

No, I’m not referring to the unboxing video that I made for ARIA the Box, but if you’re curious as to what was in the soundtrack collection holds, look no further:

Until then, I hope to see you around this corner of the anime fandom! Here’s to a wonderful, memorable year 3!

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