kfangurl: Can you believe the blog’s actually been around for 2 whole years now? It used to be such teeny tiny lil baby, and now look how well it’s growing up, heh.
I’ve heard of the Terrible Twos where toddlers are concerned.. I wonder if we’re now entering the Terrible Twos, for the blog. Like, will we get more tantrumy & stampy!
Lady G: That could happen! But I believe The Fangirl Verdict is maturing. And, I consider her a girl. She’s lively, and extremely curious about her wonderful Kdrama surroundings.
She loves to gush over handsome K-drama men. She’s creative and enjoys writing her own dream dramas, and she’s wise. She genuinely wants to help fans answer their Kdrama problems with her own feature – Dear Kfangurl.
kfangurl: Y’know, I’ve never thought about that. But you’re right, blog baby’s a girl. How could she NOT be a girl, she spazzes so much over k-boys.
Lady G: She’s such a little yoja!
kfangurl: Well, I think so, but I am also completely biased!
Lady G: And that’s a #1 rule at The Fangirl Verdict, we can be totally biased… WITHOUT stepping on anyone else’s biases.
kfangurl: Or at least, we try.
THE BLOGGING YEAR
kfangurl: It’s really been an awfully – and unexpectedly! – eventful second year for the blog. I mean, we’ve had the launch of Pure Pretty, Dear Kfangurl, and Dream Dramas – which includes YOU joining the blog too!
Y’know, last year, when I titled the blogoversary post “We are ONE” the blog was one year old, and I was the only one writing for it. Now, with you on board, it’s literally “We are TWO!”
Lady G: Oh I’m blushing. That’s really sweet! So this post is a double entendre!
kfangurl: It is. I like to be punny that way, heh.
This year we also finally crossed the 100-post mark. Which is piddling compared to blogs that have more frequent posts, but for us, this is a pretty big deal. I mean, it sometimes takes forever just to write ONE post!
Lady G: It sure does. [Ahem] At The Fangirl Verdict, we appreciate quality over quantity. There are so many aspects to explore when discussing Kdrama, or K-actors, or just answering fan-related or drama questions.
kfangurl: Pfft. You can totally tell that you’re the creative writer around here, putting such an excellent spin on everything ‘n all. To put it bluntly, we’re not always extremely efficient..!
Lady G: I do tend to sound like a CF at times, heh. Things always get hectic behind the secret curtain. But hopefully we have done our best this year to put out entertaining and interesting blog posts and stories.
There’s so much more to being a fan than squeeing over our biases and OTPs.
kfangurl: There’s more to being a fan than squeeing? Hey now, that’s mostly where the action’s at, isn’t it? *innocent eyes*
Seriously though, I really hafta thank all our readers for the wonderful support. I mean, despite us only being at 100-ish posts, the blog views have been booming this year.
Would you believe that between the blog’s 1st and 2nd birthdays, we crossed the 200,000, 300,000 AND 400,000 marks?? All in the space of 12 months? At one point, we even crossed the 2,000 views mark in a single day.
Surreal. THANKS, YOU GUYS.
To borrow a little from one of Song Jae Rim’s cheesy one-liners on We Got Married, this blog is, quite literally, powered by love. (Eee!! Are you fingers curling up yet? XD )
Lady G: Powered by love? Sounds like some Japanese robot dramas I’ve watched. Heehee. Those counts are truly amazing, and I hope our readership continues to grow. I believe it will as Kdrama and Asian drama in general creeps more into the mainstream.
kfangurl: Hallyu is taking over the world. THE WORLD, I say! Which makes me very happy, coz good things should be shared! World domination, here we come!
LEARNINGS, INSIGHTS, THAT KIND OF STUFF
kfangurl: So anyway – it’s been a couple of months now since you said yes to writing for the blog. How’s that been for you? Good? Weird? Good-weird?
Lady G: It’s been good FUN! I won’t say weird. More like, surreal. Because I never thought I’d be able to share my Kdrama imagination with the world in this way.
kfangurl: And what a pity that would’ve been!! I pride myself for having snagged you first! *pleased*
Lady G: Haha. Aww shucks.
Some awesome friendships have been forged too. I noticed that others are inspired to write and create their own dramas as well.
kfangurl: Which is very cool stuff. Hopefully we’re starting – or helping! – a good trend! Although, I do know that there’ve always been bloggers who also do creative writing. Maybe not Dream Drama style, but still, creative writing inspired by kdramas.
Actually, I’m wondering if writing for the blog’s affected the way you write, in any way? Like, would you be writing differently, dya think, if you weren’t writing for the blog?
Lady G: Well, I believe I learned a new format of writing. A Dream Drama is like one giant Kdrama narrative or synopsis without real dialogue. It took some getting used to. I have always written Fan-fiction. Writing dramas is helping me to hone my storytelling skills.
kfangurl: It’s definitely not straight-up storytelling, in terms of the format we’re using. But y’know what, I think that’s what helps to make it work. I think telling a straight-up story in all of its details would be too much for a dream drama post.
Lady G: That’s true. If I want to do that, there’s always Fan-fiction sites out there I can use. Writing Dream Dramas makes me feel as if I can write an actual Screenplay, which is something I’ve never tried before.
Except in 6th grade when I wrote “Sunny and Moon Beam” the Hippie Romeo and Juliet – and we had to act out the particular scene our teacher chose on video. We had a lot of fun getting costumes and everything. We got an A+++++ !!!
kfangurl: Clearly, your creative writing talents starting showing themselves at an early age! Congrats on the A+++++, by the way. I’ve never gotten that on ANYTHING before.
Lady G: Thank you. 🙂 In the coming year I want to try and write coherent reviews, if not for an entire kdrama, then for K-movies. I’m amazed at how you can structure your reviews and the more I read them, even if I didn’t see the drama, the more I learn. Spazzing in a review is fun, but if I learned anything about blogging this year, it’s STREAMLINING. That is my word of the year.
kfangurl: Yay for stretching your writing wings and taking on movie reviews! You’ve already written one for The Suspect; I’d love to see you taking on more!
Lady G: That would be cool. And it gives me more excuses to sneak off to Manhattan to watch a K-movie if it’s a new one to review. The review for The Suspect came to me on the subway ride home and I wrote it down in a fit of inspiration.
Webster’s Online Dictionary defines Streamline as: “to make (something) simpler, more effective, or more productive.” With your guidance and patience, I’ve been able to do that for my Dream Dramas. I’m trying to. Less is often more.
I want to be able to view dramas objectively, etc. Writing Dream Dramas, creating characters from scratch, and reading all the blog reviews has helped me understand a drama writer’s thought process (though without the Producer and money pressure!).
kfangurl: I’d like to streamline more myself, actually. It’s part of my effort to be more concise – and by extension, hopefully post more often.
Lady G: I felt the difference in your recent post on It’s Okay It’s Love. You really tackled each character and their motives, good and bad.
kfangurl: That’s one of my big experiments this year, actually. At one point, I wrote only monster reviews, and this year has been the year of trying out different lengths and approaches in my reviews.
One big learning this year for me: not every review needs to be a monster – or deserves to be a monster.
Lady G: Ha! I think some dramas are just big wastes of time.
kfangurl: True. But then, this year I also discovered the beauty of the Fast Forward button!
Through this magical button, I actually enjoyed a couple of dramas that I wouldn’t have touched otherwise. I really, really liked Mama, and I flat-out loved Jang Ok Jung. Both are dramas that had a lot of filler that I would’ve found draggy, but that my handy FF button solved for me.
Lady G: Squee! How cute! I’ve been using the FF too. I’ve learned to ignore any guilt.
kfangurl: I promise not to abuse my FF button though! *hand on heart*
Lady G: It keeps me from nodding off.
kfangurl: It’s great for shows where you’re not terribly interested in chunks of the story. The FF button is a small part of another piece of my learning / blogging journey this year, and that’s learning to be flexible.
Meaning, I don’t need to watch every drama in every little detail, nor do I need to review a show in every little detail.
Lady G: That’s a good lesson. After really studying all the blog posts and various formats, I’m learning how to view a drama more objectively, to pick up on what the writer is trying to say with their themes and the character quirks and behaviors.
Many seem like pure fluff, but there’s just as much with real depth. I’ve seriously become more patient and tolerant of drama characters that I would normally brush off or hate. As a blogger, I think it’s best to bring out the good points and bad points of a drama.
kfangurl: True, coz usually a show can’t be all bad (do not take this as a challenge, dramaland!). Neither can a show be all good too, for that matter. But I like to recognize the good stuff, in particular. It makes my drama experience happier.
I mean, I enjoy deconstruction and analysis as much as the next drama / literary nerd, but honestly, I’m here for the happy. It’s why I jumped on the drama train to begin with, y’know?
I’m also learning to be flexible by listening to suggestions on the blog and being more open-minded than an immediate knee-jerk reaction might allow. And that’s actually helped the blog to grow in ways that I never would’ve imagined in the past.
Dear kfangurl came out of a suggestion by Jo, and that’s something that I never would’ve thought to start on my own. Pure Pretty came out of a comment left by Asotss. And the preamble on the Reviews page came from feedback from Alittlewoman about spoilers.
Lady G: That’s very good. I’ve been more flexible in that with the Dream Dramas too. I enjoy suggestions more when I’m stuck or need historical help, etc. Nobody likes militant bloggers or website owners. I’ve never been one, but I’ve stumbled over them through the years.
kfangurl: Tee hee. That’s partly why I just leave you to your own devices until you decide you’d like me to take a look at what you’re brewing.
Lady G: Thanks! I posted a tweet from writer Austin Kleon with an artist list; besides giving them money, it’s best to leave them alone to create, hahaha!
kfangurl: TRUE. Can we say the same for bloggers? Blogging is an art. NOW GIMME MONEY! XD
Lady G: YES! Blogging is a form of writing. It’s true what they say about starving artists. Weez all broke.
kfangurl: Well, maybe not forever. Maybe one day we’ll figure out how to make this a sustainable career. But for now… we still haven’t figured it out. Darn.
Lady G: Well, you know how there’s “Pay per view?” maybe we could start “Pay per review!” Just kidding! Blogging is mostly free love.
kfangurl: Pay per review? That would give me money! And more drive to write, when I’m feeling lazy. BUT! I doubt anyone would actually pay to read the reviews, and therefore there’d be no money. This.. isn’t going to work, is it? XD
Y’know, there are so many blogs out there, sometimes I wonder why I want to add to the sea of voices. But that leads me to one of my big lessons this year, that people are – Omo! – actually interested in what I think.
When I start to think, “Well, there are so many reviews and recaps out there for this show, do I really need to write about it?” – that’s when I remember that people aren’t just interested in general opinions out there; I have people who genuinely want to know what I think. And that actually has been quite an eye-opener for me.
Lady G: I imagine that is. In my other favorite fandom, I always get this humble thrill whenever people say, “Ask VoyagerG, she’s the Voyagers expert.”
I’m one who eagerly looks forward to what you think about a drama, even if I know I’ll never watch that one.
kfangurl: Hee. I love how you’re biased that way! XD
ANYWAY. Enough waffling on about our blogging journey. Let’s move on to the highlight (hopefully it’s a highlight!) of this post:
Alright, so in the past, I’ve done more.. normal type giveaways, in the sense that last year’s blogoversary giveaway was for a DVD box set of Queen In-hyun’s Man. Y’know, something that could actually be sent to the winner in the mail.
The thing about that kind of giveaway, though, is that not everyone will like the show, and not everyone has a DVD player or a disc drive to play it in. Which is why I thought I’d try something different this year.
First of all, there will be TWO winners instead of one! *wild applause*
And now, for the big reveal!
One of the prizes is… (drum roll please!)… a PURE PRETTY post, created for the k-celeb of the winner’s choice! *more wild applause!*
Lady G: And the other prize is… your chosen k-celeb, given the 2nd lead role in the next DREAM DRAMA! And just so you’re not in the dark, my next Dream Drama is a sci-fi/mystery/crime/romance starring Choi Jin Hyuk and Go Ah Ra.
And because I like to be generous, you’ll even get to name your character! *Even more wild applause!*
kfangurl: Woot! Double the goodness, and prizes are completely customized too!
Lady G: They’re both BIG prizes.
kfangurl: Yes, although these prizes aren’t going to cost us money, we’re going to be putting in a whole lotta time to prepare your prizes for ya, and you know what they say about time being money.
Lady G: YES. My brother always says that. It’s going take my creativity to write their bias into the drama. Brain activated – wood burning, gears turning…
kfangurl: Considering that other equation we live by, Time = Drama Hours, we’re totally splashing out for these prizes! *ahem*
HOW TO ENTER!
kfangurl: To enter, tell us in the comments what you enjoy about the blog (so that we can hopefully do more of that next year!), and also, tell us who your k-celeb pick is, if you win.
If you prefer to pick different people depending on the prize you win, feel free to indicate both picks in your comment.
For example, you might pick Joo Won for Pure Pretty (Update! Joo Won’s k-love post is here!), but might want to pick someone different if you win the Dream Drama prize instead.
If you’d only like to be considered for one of the prizes, feel free to indicate that in your comment too!
Also, for the Pure Pretty prize, please pick someone who hasn’t already been featured in Pure Pretty. That might sound obvious to some of us, but I thought I’d just put it out there, for just in case.
Best thing about this giveaway? You can enter more than once! We’ll count each comment as one entry, and all qualifying entries (ie, not spam and not trolls) will go into a random draw.
Giveaway stays open for 2 weeks until December 26th, after which Lady G and I will randomly pick the 2 winners – and then start work on your prizes (woot!).
Have fun entering, everyone! And remember, we looove ya~