Gonna Make a Change
With the new year fast approaching, it's time to bust out everyone's favorite holiday tradition...New Year's Resolutions. I went over the changes I'd like to see in the manga community next year. Now, it's time for me to look inward. What would I like to change about myself? Without further ado, here are my Manga Resolutions for the New Year.
1. Finish What I Start
I have no problems finding manga to read. If I'm not starting new manga, then I'm just adding them to my TBR list or re-reading some series that I'm obsessed with like Something's Wrong with Us by Natsumi Ando. I read a lot of manga some months; other months not so much. The problem is that I don't always finish the series I'm reading. Setting aside the manga that I intentionally dropped, I'd like to finish more series going forward, starting with these nine:
I hope to finish all of these, and add more to the list. Lord knows I have manga from over 10+ years old that I've never finished like Hana-Kimi and Ouran High School Host Club! 🙈
2. The Year of Girl's Love
I'm not a Girl's Love (GL) reader. I know it exists, just haven't bothered to read any. That's embarrassing, and I'd like to change that. This year, I'm going to make it my mission to tackle some GL, starting with these books: Run Away With Me, Girl! by Battan, Even Though We're Adults by Takako Shimura, Sweet Blue Flowers by Takako Shimura, and SHWD by sono.N. SHWD is the only ongoing series on this list, but the others are short and completed. We have three more volumes of Run Away With Me, Girl! to go before it's completely released in English, and we only have one more book to be released for Even Though We're Adults. Given my track record at finishing series, see point #1, I doubt I'll finish all of these. My hope is that I read one of these all the way through.
3. The Year of Light Novels
Similar to my last point, I have long ignored novels and light novels, and I'd like to change that especially since there are a few recently released and upcoming novels and light novels that I'm finally looking forward to reading. First, I'm going to read The Case Files of Jeweler Richard novel. I am currently reading the manga, and I have seen the anime. I've enjoyed both thus far so it leaves little reason as to why I wouldn't enjoy the novel. Besides Jeweler Richard, I'd like to check out the mystery light novel series Associate Professor Akira Takatsuki's Conjecture by Mikage Sawamura. Finally, I can't forget the three elephants in the room. I have the danmei Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation v.1 by MTXT, the mystery novel The Decagon House Murders by Yukito Ayatsuji (which inspired the manga adaptation of the same name), and Megumi Hayashibara's autobiography The Characters Taught Me Everything sitting on my shelf untouched from several months to more than a year 😬 (grimace face emoji).
I should probably tackle the books on my shelf first before moving on to the newer stuff. At any rate, I'm going to strive to read light novels next year! I already read regular fiction and romance novels when I want to...how hard can this be? (Don't answer that.)
4. Own all of the Maison Ikkoku Collector's Editions
This next goal is a manga-collecting goal. Now, I don't have too many manga-collecting goals. The only real goal I have year after year is "don't spend too much money," which prior to COVID was an easy goal to meet. Besides that, I'm pretty easygoing. I collect based on priority, and I collect and read the series that I really, really enjoy first. Series that I'm starting to punk out on or become undecided about, I just stop. I let it sit on my shelf and marinate. I'll eventually come back to those series and decide to purge or keep collecting, especially when that series has been fully released, and the time has come for me to make a decision about the new Maison Ikkoku editions.
Maison Ikkoku is my favorite series by Rumiko Takahashi. Prior to the new omnibus editions, I owned a raggedy, Frankenstein collection. Half of the books were from the first edition (the unflipped, L-R books), and the other half was from the second edition. They weren't in the best of shape, inside and out, and all of this was a result of me waiting too long to collect the second editions back when they were readily available in print and sitting on Border's shelves. I waited so long to complete my collection piecemeal over the years that by the time I added the last book to my shelf, VIZ announced the new editions 🤦 (person facepalming emoji). I have vowed to not go through that rigamarole again, especially since these "Collector's Editions" feel so final. (Who knows if VIZ will be generous and offer a hardcover "Collector's Edition" in 10 years?)
So, it's time for me to decide whether I want to have the entire series in print or digital, and once I've made up my mind, to grab them all by the end of 2023. Because I will have a full uniform set come hell or high water, especially since I've long sold my raggedy collection XD. Keep in mind, the final Maison Ikkoku book has just hit store shelves in December 2022. and I haven't been collecting the series all along. I still only have vol. 1. I'm hoping for the trifecta: a good sale when I have the money at the right time. Because nothing sucks more than a good sale coming and you can't take advantage of it 😑 (expressionless face emoji). Wish me luck!
5. Review More Digital-First/Digital-Only Manga
This goal and the next few are blog goals. One of the reasons I started this misguided blog in 2022 was so that I can talk about digital manga and digital manga publishing. There are a lot of hidden gems out there and a lot of decent manga with not enough reviews; so going forward, I'd like to review more of the digital manga that I read if only with the hopes that some of you will read them, and maybe some of these digital manga books will get published physically. If not, at least you'll be in the know!
6. The Monthly Reading Log & Getting Creative
So, this is another goal about...content. *Shudders.* Another reason I decided to create a manga blog was in response to the stuff I was seeing on social media. I don't really like manga hauls and collection posts, even though it makes for "easy" content and engagement. I also don't like the reading challenges that are popular with manga and general book communities on Instagram and TikTok. Having 30 books to read in 30 days or finding books to check off random criteria in a month just feels like a chore to me, and I know I wouldn't keep up with it for very long.
However, I can keep up with a monthly reading log. I've been doing that offline via a book journal so it's just a matter of cleaning up my random thoughts and publishing them here. I think I'll do that for next year, but I'm not sure if I'll make that a Tumblr thing or a website blog thing or just both, which brings me to my next point: getting more creative across social media. As of this post, I am active on three social media platforms Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr, and I have an empty TikTok. I'm going to figure out what to do with Instagram, Tumblr, and TikTok. So look forward to some content from me on the internet next year!
Finally, I really enjoy reading essays and watching video essays. It's reading and seeing that content that inspired me to write the few articles I posted this past year so I plan on doing more of those. More research and analysis articles, and more broad overview content. Get ready for articles about digital manga next year!
7. Stay The F*** Off Reddit
Last, but not least, I'm going to stay the f*** off Reddit. All it does is make me angry, and you won't like me when I'm angry. I don't like me when I'm angry. Doing anything remotely related to anime or manga on Reddit does nothing for me. It just makes me fight and lose brain cells. So, I'm going to stay away from the site as much as possible. I do NOT want a Reddit Recap exceeding 600+ hours next year!
Those are my manga New Year's Resolutions for next year. All of these What are yours? Let me know on Twitter @ThatMangaHunter.
Wishing you a Happy New Year & a happy year of reading!