Hi everyone! There’s a lot that has happened and will be happening over the next month, so I thought it was worth posting up something outside of the usual columns to do a little housekeeping and keep you in the know.
First things first some exciting news. I am travelling to Japan for close to two weeks on Friday. This is majorly exciting for me personally, but it does mean I won’t be able to access the blog as easily during that time. The plan is to load up a couple of articles and set them for timed releases on the two Mondays I am away. Hopefully this will go off without a hitch, but if for whatever reason there is nothing here, it simply means I’ve screwed something up. But it should work fine, and their releases will be timed for the middle of the Monday (Australian Eastern Standard Time), around the time 1Up Culture normally releases new material. So keep your eye out for those.
To celebrate my trip to Japan, the month of July on 1Up will be called J-Month. As you can probably guess, it will be a month dedicated to all things Japan. The articles will deal with various elements of popular culture over there like Godzilla, idol groups, anime etc. The full list of article topics I haven’t settled on yet, and the latter ones will be inspired by my own travel and experiences over there. Even if you aren’t deep into Japanese popular culture I’d encourage you to give them a read, as it can be fascinating to peer into another culture, and even then it can seem really weird from a western standpoint, there is some great stuff over there to sink your teeth into.
One article in particular will be notably different. I am travelling there as part of a university fieldwork unit, and one of the assignments can be written and formatted through a blog site such as this one. Because it is an academic piece, it will be a little more formally written than the usual 1Up articles, and will include both references and a word count of approximately 4000 words. I understand if the style and size is not your cup of tea, but I hope you can still enjoy it as a piece of writing that can hopefully translate beyond dry academic jargon. The other articles will all be typically 1Up. To hunt down the J-Month articles on the main page, just look for the following image:
You’ll also probably know the month of July is when Ant-Man comes out. While I would have ignored the average movie during this month to keep with the theme, because of its relation to the MCU I’m planning on running a review for it. So J-Month doesn’t get adversely affected by this, I will also re-upload (and maybe remaster?) an older 1Up article that isn’t on the WordPress site, centred around Hatsune Miku and the Vocaloid subgenre in Japan. This will release a day or so around the Ant-Man review, and should be fresh to a lot of readers here who haven’t been following from the beginning/before the move to WordPress)
Unfortunately there is also some sad news to deal with. I started 1Up Culture for two reasons. The first was to give myself an outlet to work on my writing, both in terms of quality and quantity (I’m terrible with motivation sometimes). I wanted to challenge myself to produce material on a weekly schedule that I could be proud of. And while I feel in that respect it has been a success, it is not the only reason 1Up Culture exists. I initially started it up in conjunction with Alternate Dimensions, which is a local comic book store that I frequented. The idea was that I would write a fresh piece each week that he could use for his store’s online presence to keep eyes on the pages, while also increasing the amount of people who would read my work.
Unfortunately, Alternate Dimensions is shutting down at the end of the month. Simply put, the city of Launceston isn’t really big enough to sustain a dedicated comic shop in this economic climate. Not only is it a shame that I’ll have to get my comic dosage elsewhere, it also means one of the primary reasons I was writing 1Up Culture is gone. It has meant I’ve had to take a step back and reconsider what this meant for the blog, since I would likely be losing a significant chunk of my audience. The coming months is also going to be incredibly busy for me as I work towards my Honours degree in Journalism and complete my thesis.
At this stage, my intention is to keep writing and doing so on a weekly schedule. I am nearing a year of the blog operating (it has existed on WordPress and previously the Alternate Dimensions forum) and I am enjoying the challenge of writing (hopefully) interesting and engaging pieces more than ever before. Not to mention there is always more room for me to improve, and I can only do that by continuing to write and develop my voice. The 1 Year anniversary article for 1Up Culture will be August 10, and right now I’m trying to think of what I will do for that particular article. If you have any ideas on that, by all means throw them my way. So 1Up Culture will continue, and hopefully it will keep to a weekly schedule, although if the article length drops for a couple of weeks, just know it’s because my writing time is being devoted to a thesis instead. I’d also like to thank Ron for giving me the initial platform to write to an audience. Without it I probably wouldn’t have pushed myself to maintain the weekly schedule for this long.
That’s pretty much all I needed to say. I may do a few more of these slice-of-life blog posts down the track, either to address things that will be happening on the site or just as something a bit different from the usual column style. It also gives me a chance to thank everyone out there who is reading 1Up Culture. Be it one article or if you follow it weekly, it means a lot to know people are taking the time to read what I have to say when they have the whole internet at their disposal. Whether you find them fun, interesting or thought-provoking, I hope you continue to do so.
So again, thank you, sincerely.