My thoughts on all things geek…anime, comics, conventions, etc. Just remember stay geeky my friends!
Greetings! Recently as I looking at a list of anime that I have watched, I came to a cool realization. This year marks the 5th anniversary since I became an anime/manga fan. I know to many of you that is a small amount of time- many fans especially bloggers have been fans for a long starting as kids/teens. This may also seem like an insignificant thing to be discussing but for me it is a big deal. Like all of us, I am not the same person I was five years ago and I partially have anime/manga to thank for that in a good way.
To help you understand where I am coming from, I will tell you a bit of my story. I will admit was a bit into my adult years when I became a fan of this form of entertainment and I certainly regret that I did not come around to this sooner. My first introduction to anime occurred in late 2011. At that point I was introduced to the series Fairy Tail and Hetalia. I enjoyed every minute of those series though at that point I hadn’t realized the full extent of what anime was capable of nor was I quite willing to take the plunge at that point.
My interest in anime started to grow in early 2012. At that time, my relationship with my girlfriend at the time was ending- it was a relationship in which I was not happy for quite some time. That certainly left a void in my life not only in terms of time (I had a crap load of spare time) but in terms of emotions as well. I have always had issues relating with people but especially at that time, you could certainly say that I was anti-social. I had few social connections at the time and to lose another (one that I had worked really hard for) was especially difficult. My spirits were certainly down at the time. That was until I attended a local anime con. From that point there was no going back. I had attended other conventions before (mostly comic centric) and needed an escape from the grind of life. The con was local and I had a passing interest of anime at the time- so I figured why not give it a shot.
Two things happened at the convention- the first was that I discovered a handful of amazing series which would become among my favorites. From action, to supernatatural to comedy shows, I discovered shows in genres that I didn’t even know I enjoyed. These series have shown me what truly great things that the medium was capable of and convinced me that anime & manga were certainly worth my time. That convention and cons to come served as a great means for me to get introduced to the wide variety of series that are out there.
The second was that I discovered a great community and fanbase. These people were passionate about the thing that they loved and were willing to accept a newbie in their ranks without hesitation. And while there were a few bad apples (as there always is), the majority of the people were just awesome to deal with and accepting of anyone who shared the love for the things they did.
From there things were never the same. I had discovered a great new hobby and found something to get excited about for the first time in a long time. My anime resume has grown by leaps and bounds. My list of completed series is well over 100, I have fallen into the trap of figure and DVD/Blu-Ray collecting, My TV viewing is pretty much legal anime streaming, and I know have this blog to share my love of anime & manga to the world I still attend the same con every year and now I attend multiple cons a year in various locations.
So what has this experience done for me? Over the course of 5 years, I have changed as a person as well as we all do but I don’t think I would have changed as much without those events 5 years. I am a bit older, a bit wiser (hopefully), and more proud to be who I am than I ever was. And while I am still single after all this time, I certainly don’t feel as alone as I once did. I have discovered something to be proud of, a cause to champion so to speak. I also have become closer to people because of our shared interests. Five years ago, I would have never thought that I would be part of social groups and be here right now writing about my experiences on the ani-blogging sphere. While I still have a way to go, I am more confident and much more social than I was back then. All these things are because I joined this community.
Anime & Manga in itself rekindled a love that I had for a great story. As I became an adult, my passion for the art of story telling went away as did many of the things that I enjoyed in my youth. When I was introduced to these things however my love for story telling came back ten fold. I know have something to look forward to. I have discovered a form of entertainment which can easily be called an artform. In exploring this art form, I have been able to reflect on myself a bit. Many of the stories told (however fantastical they are) relate in some way to the lives we live and the world we live in. As is the case with a good story, we see a bit of ourselves in these characters and I have certainly enjoyed these journeys and perhaps grown a little bit myself.
I know this may seem like an overly dramatic exaggeration but my life has certainly been better since I made that fateful discovery 5 years ago. I won’t go so far as to say that it was something like a life saver (because my life certainly didn’t need saving) but it has only improved things for me and given me another purpose. I thank you for your time and for reading my story. Hopefully, it inspire to share their story about their great discovery of this thing that we all love. Until next time, this is Railgunfan75 signing off!