Hey, my name is Rai.
Before diving in too deep, let me introduce myself.
I am a 24 year-old (now 27) queer female. I am a 90’s child that grew up watching anime like Pokemon, Yugi-Oh, Dragonball Z, Tenchi Muyo, Outlaw Star, Hamtaro. And the list goes on…
Throughout the past ten years, I’ve trolled around the internet under the pseudonym Rai. I have also been known as PinkRaichu or PinkRaichu21. The nickname is based on two of my favorite things: the color pink and the Pokemon Raichu:
Over time, I’ve watched anime on and off. Sometimes I have watched multiple series at once, and other times where it took me months just to watch a single 12-episode anime. But no matter how busy I get, I am always doing something geek-related, even it’s just playing my DS before I go to sleep or reading manga on my phone during breaks at work.
However, over the past couple of months, I sort of had a crisis. And that is the purpose of starting this blog.
When I graduated from Rowan University in 2013 with a Bachelors in Writing Arts, my plan was to get a job as a writing tutor. After almost three years, I have learned that life doesn’t always go as planned. A couple months after graduation, I obtained a tutoring job at a college, which I absolutely loved. But what I failed to realize at the time was that most tutoring jobs are part time and do not pay a lot. I am normally not the kind to do things for money, but I have a fiancé and we are hoping to get our own place soon.
Because of this, I accepted a full time teaching job.
This was a big mistake. I took the job because I was supposed to be a support teacher that took struggling students to the side to assist them- essentially an in-house tutor. But this was basically a lie. The school was unorganized, the students were out of control, and I was thrown into the middle of all of it, expected to sub and watch the kids on my own. The insanity affected my anxiety, giving me panic attacks and making my nerves constantly on edge. I became very depressed and stressed- so worked up that I couldn’t focus on my job or anything else in my life.
Note: If you suffer from anxiety, panic attacks, or depression similar to what I am describing, please seek professional help. Therapy helped me get my anxiety under control.
During this time, I didn’t watch any anime, read any manga, or play any video games. I tried to, but I was so anxious that I couldn’t even concentrate on things I enjoyed most. I especially missed writing- I didn’t have time to work on my graduate school papers, let alone any personal endeavors (fanfiction, poetry, etc.).
Inspiration From The Strangest Place: A Concert
I didn’t even realize how much I missed my otaku hobbies until I went to see my second Miku concert in 2016 with my mom (yes, my mom is awesome like that!). I attended Miku’s first expo in 2014 and absolutely loved it. But at the time I was very carefree and didn’t have the same responsibilities I have now. I was an oblivious child.
However, with everything going on in my life, this year’s concert had much more of an impact on me. I found myself crying through most of it. Why? Because I realized how much I hated my job, and I was happy- so relieved- to actually be able to enjoy something for the first times in months without being on the verge of an anxiety attack. During the performance, a thought came to me. Why not make this my career? Even if it is just on the side, why not do something related to anime, manga, or other forms of Japanese culture? It was as if Miku was speaking to me during that concert- but of course her high-pitched Japanese vocals said nothing about career choices- can you imagine?
A couple weeks after the concert, I went to the anime convention AnimeNext and felt a similar sensation. I was excited and anxiety-free for the three days, which was a miracle. I even felt this elation for a couple days after returning home. Even though I missed the multiple career panels at the convention, I had pretty much already decided. I am going to make anime and manga part of my career. I have a degree in writing- I have the writing skills to succeed in journalism. Now it is just a matter of time and effort to get my name out there and find an outlet to write about anime. And that is the purpose of this post– to baptize myself in the world of anime journalism.
Will this blog ever amount to anything? I don’t know. Maybe it will get me a job reviewing anime and help me make it in the industry. Or maybe reality will suck me back in and the blog will stay dormant. I hope that it least stays a hobby, though- a place to vent my thoughts about anime.
I hope you will join me on this journey!