How do I even start this post? It’s been nearly three years since I last updated, and so much has happened in the intervening time. A large part of the reason I stopped posting regularly is that I got a full-time job with Yen Press in September of 2020 (I started in October that year) as a Sales & Marketing Assistant. I accepted the position the same day I signed papers to buy a house. These two things, coupled with having an infant to care for, really sucked time and energy out of my days, and my writing went by the wayside.
And now…well, my firstborn is a toddler, and I just had a second baby! I’m on a for-real maternity leave right now (last time I was a freelancer, so I didn’t have that privilege), though coming to a close in a couple weeks. I’m starting to feel the pressure of returning to “normal” with a new little life in tow….
So to start, I guess a life update. I’m still at Yen, now as the Sales & Marketing Coordinator. Working in manga was a dream of mine for a long time, and something I had kind of tried to MacGuyver together for myself between working at Comicopia for so long and then transitioning to review writing. I thought I wanted to be more involved in the editorial side of things, and while I do still think that’s something I would enjoy, I’m finding myself really loving what my job has become. Essentially, I put together a lot of sales reports and crunch a lot of data…and on occasion, I also get to chat with librarians. That last part is an especially nice bonus, because I do love me a library!
I’m still podcasting with Manga Machinations, as well. For a long time, I really wondered if I could balance the full time work, the full time mothering, and doing the podcast (especially since I had to drop the regular blogging), but I have found that podcasting has been really essential for me. It’s a place where I can really get in touch with myself as more than “just” a mom (though I talk about my kids constantly – drawback of the vocation, haha), and I get to socialize with friends. I’m really proud of a lot of the stuff we’ve done, though it is my co-hosts who really put in the hard work. I appreciate them for indulging me just showing up and chatting every week!
I have been reading regularly, both for the podcast and for pleasure. Though I have to admit that much of the pleasure reading has pivoted toward murder mystery novels and away from comics. But fear not, I do still try to keep up with manga, especially whatever Yen is publishing. And luckily, I’ve noticed more murder mystery manga coming out in recent months….
Some of my reading time has also been eaten up by another new hobby: Crochet. I started in March of 2022 on a whim, and I found that I really enjoy it. I had tried taking up crochet in the past (and other fiber arts, as well), but for some reason it didn’t stick until now. I think something about motherhood has turned me into a murder mystery-loving, crocheting, gardening little granny before my time! Let’s ignore the fact that these are literally always things I’ve enjoyed or aspired toward….
Truth be told, I’m not 100% sure what I want to do with this blog right now. I do miss writing; the most exciting writing I do on a regular basis is emails with analysis on the state of the comics market. Don’t get me wrong, I love doing that…but it’s hardly feeding my need to write completely.
With the recent introduction of the Threads social media platform and ensuing discussions about old school social media, there is a part of me that would like to allow this blog to be somewhat more personal. I’ve certainly never shied away from inserting myself into my work here, but I suspect that might become more of a thing. Since the days of MySpace, I’ve almost always kept a blog. That pivoted to sharing myself on Facebook, and then Instagram, and then Twitter…but those platforms are so short-form, I have to cut myself down into digestible parts whenever I post in a place like that. And frankly, Twitter just isn’t an option for me anymore. Even before it was bought out and started to go downhill, it was wrecking me mentally every time I looked at my feed. I’ve slowly started on Bluesky as well, but let’s be real…that’s pretty much the same thing as Twitter, though currently more palatable.
I don’t want to sound so down on social media; I do still enjoy Instagram especially, and I appreciate having a platform to share parts of myself with family and friends. But I’m ready to stop trying to sell myself in so many little ways, and to start engaging with more intention. I have always believed in being honest about myself, even in an environment as unpredictable as the Internet. I’m just going to go back to my roots a bit here.
So this may be the last update again for a while, but I do really want to come back to writing, given time. I’d like to do more manga reviews, but I’m also opening myself up to writing more personal pieces. I am still the Manga Maven. I’m just also Morgana, and I’m ready to share more of that with readers, too. So even if you just stick around for the comics talk, I appreciate you tagging along!