I felt bad enough when I was had two pending nominations for the Real Net Blog Award. Somehow, I fell even farther behind with the Sunshine Blogger nominations — I’ve kept 9 nominating bloggers waiting since June! So, first let me say a combined thank you and sorry to the following bloggers (in the order of their nominations, starting in June 2019):
- Anime Articles
- A Journey Through Life
- Fanfiction Anime World
- Confessions of an Overage Otaku
- Keiko’s Anime Blog
- D&A Anime Blog
- Apprentice Mage’s Lounge
- Merlin’s Musings
Please don’t take my slow response as a sign of a lack of appreciation. I get a real kick out of these nominations. Thank you!
I really hope late is better than never!
If you’re curious, you can read my first Sunshine Blogger Award post here.
And yes, I know that trying to channel Star Trek Wrath of Khan in my title — and trying to riff off sun rays — is a little too much. But, I had to try!
To avoid angering any rule loving deities, I will now present the rules:
- Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link to their blog so that other people can visit them. The links above will take you to the nominating post — please enjoy!
- Answer the 11 questions put to you by the nominator. I’m going to have to pick a handful from each nomination — I like my readers and don’t want them to try to sit through 99 answers!
- Nominate 11 bloggers of your choice and provide them with a new set of 11 questions to answer. I’m going to skip this piece, because the award’s been around a number of times. Instead, please feel free to answer any of the questions I answered in the comments! Or heck, even answer your own questions!
- Notify the nominees by commenting on one of their blog posts. See above.
- List the rules and display The Sunshine Blogger Award logo within your post or on your blog site. Done and done!
I’m going to present selected questions from each of the nominations. The nominators will be listed in from the earliest nomination to the most recent.
Is There A Story Behind The Name Of Your Blog?
Yes. It’s a Wheel of Fish. Capture from the YouTube clip.
Given that I started this anime site to celebrate beautiful moments in anime with other fans, the story of this site’s name might seem a bit, well, odd. Did you ever see the “Weird Al” Yankovic movie called UHF? I think “Weird Al” is wildly talented. I think the movie’s underrated. But putting that aside, there’s a scene from UHF where one of the new shows they’re trying to produce is called Wheel of Fish. It’s as ridiculous as it sounds! But the cadence of “something of something” stuck with me. So, I added my brand (Crow) to World of Anime! You have to say the last three words as if you’re the announcer from Epic Rap Battles of History. It’s funnier that way.
Do You Think You’ll Still Be Blogging In Five Years?
I think the real question is, if I’m still blogging in five years, will anybody be reading? If the answer’s yes, then I think I’ll probably be blogging in 5 years. The site’s meeting my goals, and it seems to have attracted the attention of some great folks. Let’s just say I plan to be here in five years and leave it at that!
Do You Listen To Anime Music Outside Of Watching Anime? If So, What Is Your Favorite Song?
Yes. All the time! My Anime Soundtracks playlist in iTunes has 589 songs for a total of 21 hours, 35 minutes. I occasionally “accidentally” use Audio Hijack to capture my favorite OPs and EDs every season (it’s also great for capturing interviews). In addition, I buy sound a lot of soundtracks, like the Re:CREATORS OST (which you can buy here from Amazon; I’m an affiliate, but I’d recommend this soundtrack even if I weren’t!). My favorite individual song surprised me. I thought it would be Some Other time from the Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex sound track (which you can also buy from Amazon). But when I sort my playlist by the number of times played, it turns out to be Muv Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse’s first ending theme is my favorite. Who knew?
I was a little surprised that the ED for Muv Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse was my favorite song. When I did the screen cap, though, I remembered: Oh, yeah, Cryska was in it! That must be why! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
If you watch romantic comedy anime, what is your favorite and why? If not, why don’t you like romcoms?
Toradora. The plot, the characters, the tropes, everything just clicked for me. Maybe because it’s because I identified so strongly with Ryuuji Takasu. Or maybe it was so packed with perfectly executed character moments. Or maybe it was just that good. It remains one of my favorites overall, and certainly my favorite romcom.
What do you do outside of anime? Non-anime related hobbies.
I like to write technical articles. I actually did that decades ago, writing for Advisor Media (I don’t even think they exist anymore — at least, a quick Google search was fruitless). I wrote a ton of articles (okay, about 150) about Lotus Notes Domino, Microsoft database technologies, even Oracle databases. Now, I write the application developer security blog at www.interstell.com.
But what I really want to do is write novels. I write about writing novels on my other site, www.terranceacrow.com. I’ve been building the world I’m writing about on and off since the late 1970s or the mid 1980s. I just wish I’d spent more time actually writing about the books!
If you drink alcoholic beverages, what is your preferred poison? If you do not, favorite ice cream flavor?
Usually, I prefer beer. I can’t get Sam Adams Light near my house anymore (what’s up with that?), so right now my beer of choice is Blue Moon or, if I care less about flavor, Bud Light. If I’m in the mood for something with a little more kick, I prefer Russian Standard Platinum.
What is your favorite moment from a Kyoto Animation anime?
I was a little surprised when I didn’t pick this moment! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
This is a very, very tough question. There are so many moments that deserve the honor! Do I choose something like Violet Evergarden trying to drag her beloved to safety by her teeth? The idol performance from Beyond the Boundary? The human/dragon drinking scene from Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid? 2/3 of Amagi Brilliant Park?
I’m borderline cheating, aren’t I?
Okay, fine. I’ll choose a moment from Sound Euphonium. There a nighttime scene where Reina Kousaka drags Kumiko Oumae to the top of this hill with an overlook above the city. It was a breathless little character moment that stuck with me because of the fusion of animation, soundtrack, and writing. It just felt so right for Kumiko. It’s exactly the kind of moment I’ve come to expect from Kyoto Animation.
Who are your anime crushes?
This is some dangerous territory! But, what the heck. Since the question asks for a plural answer, I’ll give two, in no particular order. First, I’d have to say Miia from Monster Musume. She’s beautiful, she’s strong, she’s vivacious, and she’s a complex character. She gets jealous. She gets petty. But she doesn’t want to stay that way! The fact that she’s a lamia is beside the point.
In a series that has way more than it’s share of amazing women, I’m almost surprised that I picked Rossweisse from High School DxD Hero. I say surprised because I thought I would have picked Akeno. I’m going to have to have a talk with myself to see what’s up with that.
Do you like Japanese food?
To put my answer into context, if you ask if there’s a cuisine that I don’t like, I would have said no. Yes, I love Japanese food! But to be honest, anime has given me an even greater appreciation for it. I can’t get a lot of authentic examples around me. The closest is a restaurant called FuGu Sushi. I ordered a bento lunch box the other day when my wife and I visited, and I was more giddy than an adult male should have been at the presentation. Their Katsu Lunch Bento was just fantastic.
Questions from Fanfiction Anime World
Who/What inspires you to write?
I could either answer this with a long, complex, introspective dissertation — and I’m not sure how it would end! Or, I could quote Inigo Montoya, “Let me explain… No, there is too much. Let me sum up.”
Please tell me you know who Inigo Montoya is…
There are two reasons I write. The first is that I can’t not write. I’ve tried. I’ve tried very hard not to write. I can’t do it. Now, the other side of the coin is that I don’t think I can do it well — certainly not to my standards. But my mental health power dives into granite if I don’t write. So, in a way, the only choice I have is what to write about.
I mean, the characters in my head get really pissed off if I don’t give them some expression. The Conrad family in particular is really annoying that way. After the beating they tool at the hands of Terran Consolidated Products, you’d think they’d want to keep a lower profile!
This is a screen from the Scrivener project for my latest novel that I’m not writing. At least I can design the medical deck for the ISF Indiana (see below)!
The second reason is that my stupid brain keeps generating scenarios. There’s the fall of the 17th Deep Space Battle Fleet. It’s choreographed to Mike Oldfield’s Ommadawn Part I. It starts at 11:05 when the fleet’s pickets encounter the first signs of the enemy; continues to the escalating conflict leading up to the main battle being joined at 16:47; and ends with the last fleet ship dying in a null-dimensional blast at 18:21.
Then there’s my work life. I don’t leave meetings at work. I perform retrograde motions. I don’t try to generate political support for a needed project. I see it as playing Wizard’s Chess.
So I either write this stuff down to clarify to myself that yes, this is fiction, or I give folks at work reason to look askance at me. And let’s face it: They don’t need more reasons to do that!
Huh. This questions seems to have hit a nerve!
How do you cure writer’s block? It’s our worst enemy!
I don’t cure it. I just write. What I write sucks (okay, sucks more than usual), but the only response to writers block is to ignore it. Describe a pencil. Narrate your cat walking across the floor. When your brain tries to tell you it can’t write, show it how very wrong it is.
Now, if I could only find a way to write creatively in those moments, I’d have something worth sharing!
It honestly feels like less and less of younger generations are interested in reading and writing. Barely anyone tends to sit down and read a book anymore. Do you have an opinion on this? How can we motivate or encourage a younger audience to become more interested in reading/writing?
I instinctively distrust any statement about a generation. For one thing, the odds of me observing enough people in any given generation to begin to identify trends is low. I’m kinda regional. For another, I’ve never met a “generation.” I’ve seen too many failed attempts to blend the characteristics of individuals into a mass persona. So I don’t make the attempt.
I also observe that when we give any generation — younger, older, and anything inbetween — something worth reading, they seem to embrace it. At the risk of seeming to contradict my previous paragraph, let me try again: A work like J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series seemed to appeal to people of any age.
All that being said, I think attention spans are under assault by the social media equivalents of what Max Headroom called blipverts. The antidote is giving readers something from the heart. Something that touches them. Something not mass-produced.
I just wish I could figure out how to do that!
Max Headroom’s alter ego really didn’t like seeing the aftermath of a blipvert. Capture from YouTube.
Spiders, yea or nay? Discuss.
Yea. Spiders are mechanically amazing. They also eat evil bugs like mosquitoes. So as long as the spider stays relatively out of sight, and as long as they don’t have a type of venom that could kill me, my wife, my kids, or our cat, they’re welcome in my home.
What’s the one anime you really liked that no one else seems to like or know about (can be either or both of those)?
I’m tempted to say Re:CREATORS, which I recently inducted into the Caw of Fame. Or Beyond the Boundary, also a Caw of Fame recipient. But over the years, I’ve met some folks who like those series, too, so I’m going to go with one that’s near and dear to my heart and that’s also in the Caw of Fame — but is a show I’ve not found anyone else who likes.
I’m talking about Chrome Shelled Regios. I talked about why I liked it in my Caw of Fame article, referenced above. The show just had everything I liked: a hidden power only revealed under duress, and with consequences. Characters who tried hard to be who they wanted to me — or who they thought they should be. Situations that explored the ethics of power. Situations that explored the limits of strength. The ending themes were just hypnotic in their tragedy. So my answer is Chrome Shelled Regios. And the only reason I didn’t pick Felli Loss as one of my anime crushes is because I was worried she might be displeased. And I don’t want that!
I really like Felli. Her personality just clicks with me. I suspect that says more about me than I’d like! Capture from the Funimation stream.
What, if anything, do you write other than your blog? Had any of it published?
I mentioned Advisor Media. Between them, another handful of publications in the US, and a couple in the United Kingdom, by the time the internet came along, I’d had 150+ technical articles professional published. I’ve had a couple short stories published about 30 years ago. And then… nothing. Well, the blogs I’ve already referenced, but professionally, I’ve let myself lapse.
I need to do something about that…
Are you an indoors or outdoors person?
Indoors. I spent my early life on a family farm. My dad’s responsibility, aside from grain farming, was managing the family’s pig herds. So, I’m intimately familiar with all aspects of that operation. I also spent countless summer hours in the fields cultivating corn and soybeans. And baling hay and straw. There were days I’d see the sun rise and the sun set. I ate much dust in those days.
So when I hear people wax poetic about the joys of the outdoor life, I turn up my music, get more comfortable in my chair, and go back to indoor stuff.
Not saying anything against folks who love the outdoors. I’ve just had my fill of bugs and dirt and pig crap. A little goes a long, long way.
How do you plan your blog posts?
Since I review seasonal anime, most of the answer is easy: I try to publish my review as soon as I can after an episode airs. I certainly try to publish my review before the next episode is available!
What this does is give me a reliable stream of posts on specific days. That helps my readers know they come visit and see something new on most days! That also takes off the pressure, so if I want to write a Caw of Fame induction, or a Caw Out Award, I can without disrupting reader expectations. In other words, it’s a bonus, not an interruption.
Who is your current favourite fictional character?
Nick Webb wrote the Legacy Fleet Series. The first book starts out in such a way that I thought, “My god! What a Battlestar Galactic rip off!” But it was a ruse. The series took my expectations and recombined them into something that was science fiction magic.
When I listened to the first audio book in the series, Constitution: Book 1 of the Legacy Fleet Series, I thought it was a ripoff of Battlestar Galactic. Glad I was wrong — it was a great series!
The main character’s name was Timothy Granger. He was a Captain of the Constitution, and he was about to retire. His journey, and how he handled it, was remarkable. Right now, I’d have to say he’s my favorite character.
Though I’d still prefer to date Miia. But don’t tell my wife.
What anime series do you wish got a second season?
Do you have a favorite anime creator or director that you admire?
Yoshiichi Akahito. I’m fascinated by someone who can write Shikabane Hime, something that I loved so much, and then not do anything else. Is he writing under a different name? Was this the only story in his imagination? I’d love to know more.
What anime titles are you looking forward to next year?
A Certain Scientific Railgun Season 3 is high on my list. Darwin’s Game looks interesting. And, of course, there’s Is It Wrong to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon Season 3. Though I suppose it’s too much to hope it’ll focus on my favorite character Eina Tulle…
Your favorite character from Sword Art Online?
There’re a lot of great characters to choose from, but I have a favorite: Shino Asada, a.k.a. Sinon. I like everything about her: her backstory, her personality, her angry/sexy looks — everything. Do you remember in Sword Art Online Movie: Ordinal Scale, when Kirito wants to thank Shino for helping him in a battle? He asked her what she’d like, and she said some pastries from a nice bakery. He offered her a beef bowl or something. I loved her reaction! She crinkled her nose and said, “I don’t want that!” No hemming or hawing around — she just tell it like it is.
Sinon’s my favorite SAO character. It really wasn’t an easy choice! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
But let’s roll with the topic of side stories… What secondary or minor character from an anime would like to see more of their story? (I’m going to ground rule out TK from Angel Beats. No points for the easy ones!)
I would not have chosen TK, but you know what? That is an interesting idea! But instead I’ll pick Reine Murasame from the Date a Live franchise. She’s incredibly competent, which isn’t easy to achieve on the Fraxinus. She always looks like she just woke up, and she often has bags under her eyes. Why is that? There’s a story there, and every time I see her, I want to know more.
What comic book, book, or other media property would you like to see as an anime?
Do you remember Rock & Rule? It came out while I was in college. I loved the graphic novel, and the Blondie/Cheap Trick soundtrack was amazing. When it came to the animated movie, though, I was disappointed. It kinda reminded me of Ralph Bakshi’s animated Lord of the Rings movie, but in a derivative way. As I thought about your question, it occurred to me that this might make a perfect anime movie! It might make an interesting project for 3Hz.
What would your Patronus/spirit animal be?
Seriously, I think Cthulhu was make a perfect Patronus. I mean, who would mess with it? Capture from a Reddit thread.
Cthulhu probably wouldn’t count, would it? Though I’d bet hard cash money a Dementor would think twice about messing with “dead Cthulhu (who) waits dreaming…” Okay, if I can’t choose one of the Elder Gods (I think I have that right…), then I’ll go with Shunma Suruga from Re:CREATORS as my spirit animal. Wait, what do you mean my spirit animal can’t be a human?
Find. I’ll pick a stock crow. Family Corvidae. Super intelligent and very wise. Sound like anyone you know?
Yeah, doesn’t ring a bell for me, either!
You are captain of a starship that has discovered a habitable planet. What did you name your ship, and what would you name this planet?
Okay, I feel like I’m cheating by choosing this question because for the novels I’m trying (perpetually!) to write, I’ve designed dozens of planets and even more ships. So, I’ll choose my favorite from the current book I’m trying (also perpetually!) to write the beats for: A Ghast in the Machine.
The ship that first visited the 61 Cygni system was named the TransStell Expeditionary Force (TEF) Indiana. Since 61 Cygni didn’t have any habitable planets, I’ll choose a planet in another star system, Epsilon Eridani. The planet’s called Aldertraum, or Hans Alder’s Tribal world.
If you’re even a little interested in that world (and really, who isn’t it?), please visit my author site.
What is your favorite color?
Black. Or gray. Mostly black.
Thanks Everyone: Nominators and Readers!
If you nominated me, thanks again! And if you’re a reader who made it this far, double thanks! I hope that you enjoyed this little trip into my psychology! I certainly enjoyed sharing these answers with you.
Did any of these questions or answers spark any thoughts? Would you like to answer any of the questions? Please feel free to do so in the comments!