How the Carnival of Aces Helped Shape My Blogging Experience

This post was written for the November Carnival of Aces, which is about “The Carnival of Aces” and is being hosted by The Notes Which Do Not Fit.

I wasn’t originally planning on writing anything for this month’s Carnival. I’m a pretty new blogger, having been at it for less than two years, and participating in the CoA about a dozen times. What could I possibly say about it that would be insightful or interesting?

Probably nothing. But, after reading some of the other contributions, I’ve decided to share some of my experience anyway. After all, this blog may be young, but the Carnival of Aces has had a huge impact on its history.

If you’re familiar with this blog, you know that it basically comprises two kinds of posts. One: my bi-weekly reviews of movies from an ace perspective. And two: editorials about asexuality and my own experiences as an ace person. When I started blogging, I assumed the reviews would generate the most traffic, and that the personal writings would appeal only to select readers. After all, everyone likes movies, but who’d want to read about me??!!

So I was quite surprised that, while the reviews tended to get only a few views apiece, many editorials became quite popular. As of this writing, the top twelve most viewed articles of this blog are all editorials. And of those twelve, ten were written for the Carnival!

I’ve got mixed feelings about this. I’m a bit sad that my mission to educate people about asexuality through film criticism hasn’t been more successful. On the other hand, sharing my experiences has enabled me to participate in the larger ace conversation, and knowing that people are interested in them has given me a sense of validation and community. And without the Carnival I might never have gotten around to writing about those experiences.

In fact, over the last two years the Carnival has repeatedly given me a much-needed push to write about things that I really wanted or needed to express. My first ever contribution was to the January 2017 Carnival, where the theme was “Many Ways to Be Ace”. I took the opportunity to clarify my own demisexuality and ambiguous position within the asexual community – something I felt was important to do on a blog that claimed to offer an “asexual perspective”. The August 2017 Carnival, about “Asexuality and Academia”, coincided neatly with the one-year anniversary of my M.A., and allowed me to reminisce about the experience. The May 2018 Carnival gave me the chance to express my conflicted feelings about my own celibacy. And, when I felt that that post left a lot unsaid, the June 2018 Carnival came along and allowed me to describe my feelings of sexual shame in more depth.

I’ve hosted the Carnival twice now, in January and September 2018. Although in both cases I basically had my contribution already written and hosted the Carnival as an excuse to publish it, I did also enjoy reading what other people had to say on the topics. The September topic especially, “Asexuality Before AVEN”, is one I find fascinating, and I wish more people had contributed to it.

Finally, the Carnival has given me an opportunity to publish a series of posts on platoniromanticism. The content of these posts has been a bit haphazard, since I only publish if and when a compatible Carnival theme comes up. But between them they’ve enabled me to describe an identity that still isn’t much talked about, and to share experiences that many might find unfamiliar. Probably the most significant of these was published for the October 2017 Carnival. The theme was “Asexuality in Fandom”, and so I shared some of my feelings about shipping and about its role in the X-Files fandom. In order to write the post, I re-watched one episode of The X-Files, and that started me down the path of re-watching the series, writing reviews, and, eventually, starting a whole second blog!

So, yes, the Carnival of Aces has been very important to me and to my writing, and I hope it continues for many years to come.

In conclusion, I would like to re-share some of my favourite CoA posts from the last two years. (N.B.: This list is highly biased towards posts published on WordPress, just because those were the ones I could most easily keep track of.)

7 thoughts on “How the Carnival of Aces Helped Shape My Blogging Experience

  1. sildarmillion says:

    I’ve definitely enjoyed both aspects of your blog. I love movies and so it was great for me to find a reviewer who reviews them from a specifically ace lens and it’s bene great to have conversations about movies with you from that perspective! But as far as the other editorials go, it is really nice that you have a whole collection of really thoughtful pieces, which was exactly the kind of reading material I needed as I thought about things. On top of that, you have it all organized in a really great way that makes it easy for me to find older posts!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sara K. says:

    FWIW, since you’ve been at this on a regular basis for over a year, I no longer consider you a new blogger. Most ace blogs do not remain active after the first year, so congratulations!

    I had also planned to contribute to the ‘Asexuality Before AVEN’ carnival, but the timing was inconvenient. And then the post I planned to contribute also happened to be something which could have been submitted to ‘Asexuality and Poetry’ but I also did not find time to write it (at least not in a way which would have met my personal standards). I still plan to write that post eventually, though it will probably end up as an ordinary post on the Asexual Agenda rather than a carnival submission (what is this prospective post about anway? hint: it has something to do with William Shakespeare).

    Liked by 2 people

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