Another year has come and gone. I’ve done a lot– from moving states and accepting promotions to taking vacations to new places– and at the same time it feels like I haven’t done enough. Where has all this time gone? And just how much of it has been spent in the realm of fandom?
I admit– blogging was tough for me this year. My Tumblr account took a beating at the beginning of the year and through the summer, and my first attempt at WordPress ended in a flop because I placed too many limits upon myself. As far as Tumblr goes, it wasn’t until the final quarter of the year I managed to find my voice again and fell back into the groove. I’ve slowed down on the number of Gruvia meta I post, but I also hit my 1,000 follower count this year and I’m satisfied with that.
I moved from Tumblr blogging to WordPress in order to experience a more classic blogging style; I wanted to report in my own words instead of through images, and about things that were unique to me. Where Tumblr is for an audience, CaffeinatedNerdBlog is– first and foremost– for me. And I’m loving every second of it. I’m really glad some of you have decided to come along for the ride!
Reading started out great for me this year; I met Alexandra Bracken at the Tattered Cover in Denver during her promotional tour for Passenger. I managed to acquire three autographed books (including Passenger). I expanded my book collection only to need to sell off over 100 of the new books I had collected. I hit a reading slump halfway through the year which lasted the better of the summer, and then reared it’s ugly head again in October and November.
My favorite duology , The Wrath and the Dawn, ended this year which was bittersweet. I loved every second of it and have had to fight with myself not to reread it– there are still so many other books on my TBR list, but Khalid and Shazi will never leave me.
I successfully defeated my GoodReads challenge for the year– reading 389out of the 30 books I pledged to finish. According to GoodReads, the longest book was Winter (my first audio book read as well–832 pages), and the shortest was one a novella called The Crown and The Arrow, part of The Wrath and The Dawn (a measely 9 pages).
In total, 39 books and a total of 12,437 pages read. Not bad, considering the year before I was lucky to have read 10 books.
I also explored some more independent bookstores; as much as I love my local Barnes & Noble, sometimes a change of pace is nice. My favorite was Kinokuniya in Manhattan, which is a Japan-based book store; I also enjoyed McNally-Jackson, also in New York.
ANIME AND MANGA
This has been a fun year in the anime realm. So many fresh, new things have come up at the same time many existing series have hit their climaxes and endings. I managed to finish or start more anime this year than I have in the last 4 years combined.
Slow, I know. Thank my husband; he is always introducing me to new things.
Fairy Tail is the only currently running manga I am keeping up with on a weekly basis; with no anime news or movie news, this one has been a dry well otherwise. I have popped in to Naruto to watch a few episodes I wanted to see from the end of the series (such as the SasuSaku scenes and chapter 699), but otherwise have left it relatively untouched.
Despite exciting announcements, I’ve been low on the gaming radar. I haven’t played anything on the PC or a gaming system in around two years– it has been mostly otome games– the bulk of which was Mystic Messenger. However, 2017 is looking to bring me back into the fold with the Final Fantasy VII remake and Kingdom Hearts III.
After successfully completing NaNoWriMo in 2015, I used the beginning of 2016 to wrap up the novel and then did a soft edit. That’s about as far as I got.
Aside from writing one chapter of an old Gruvia fan fic and a few drabbles, I failed in the writing realm. I did attempt NaNoWriMo 2016, but only managed to get to 18,000 words in between the move and my promotion, this year just wasn’t meant for writing.
TV AND FILM
Marvel and Game of Thrones: Those are the only two franchises that kept me rolling this year. I’ve never been a big a TV person; sitcoms are intermittent for me and after dropping The Walking Dead, the only television show I currently bother to keep up with is Game of Thrones.
And by keep up, I mean that I saw Nikolaj Coster-Waldau at H&M at Times Square and tried, unsuccessfully, to meet him because he plays Jaime Lannister and even though I was a trip with my lady friends, I wanted so badly to send a picture to my husband to make him jealous. Because I am a good wife and that’s what good wives do. They make their husband jealous by meeting actors from their favorite TV show to watch together.
Best wife. That is me.
As for movies, the only one I went to a theater this year to watch and enjoyed was Deadpool (so worth begging Ben to take me for Valentine’s Day– hilarious!). I had mixed feelings on Captain America: Civil War (
I still feel Tony Stark was in the right and that Cap sacrifices way too much for Bucky but who I am to judge). My husband and I watched the Warcraft movie and while it wasn’t terrible and it focused on some of the lore you don’t necessarily get out of WoW, there was just something about it that didn’t click at the same time.
What I’m really looking forward to is Thor: Ragnarok. Mmm, Chris Hemsworth.
I’ve remained loyal to the same channels on YouTube: PewDiePie, Good Mythical Morning, Vlogbrothers, Dan and Phil, NerdyNummies… but I’ve also added Nerdist, ASAP Science, SimplyNaillogical, Threadbanger and Grav3yardgirl to the mix. This is about as close to regular television programming as I get. YouTube will likely always trump TV for me. It’s shorter, easier, and far more entertaining.
This year was full of traveling adventures for me. I went to New York with friends and spent a week in the city for the first time, learning how to use the subway and was even able to experience my first roller coaster (in New Jersey). I spent the bulk of my summer in Texas between Beaumont and Houston. I spent a week in Dallas and a week in Louisiana for a wedding.
The problem is, I didn’t explore as much with Ben as I am used to. We generally go on day trips throughout the year and for some reason it just didn’t happen this year– the furthest we went was Boulder to go to the Pearl Street Mall, and once I went with a friend for a hike. I plan on remedying that as soon as possible; there are so many interesting places to visit in the hill country around Austin.
Speaking of that, there was the move from Denver to Austin… I think it should come as no surprise to anyone that I’m tired and ready for a few months of no movement at all.