The purpose of Captivate My Mind is to capture and to put into writing my love for TV serials, movies and anime (and quite possibly books too) on an online blog. 

Why did you create your blog, Captivate My Mind?

It has been a few years since I graduated and I haven't done much writing since I graduated. I had to work and make money after college, but the yearning and the love for writing is very much part of me. I just need a medium of where I can communicate and express my thoughts and share my love of TV serials, movies, anime, books and it include music and actors I love. My interests are just so vast and it stretches so far. If a friend asked me to supply her a list of actors, I am a fan of it is really difficult to list them all out spontaneously.  Therefore, I wanted to find a way to incorporate my love for writing with my love for other people and things.

Captivate My Mind. What's In the Name?

In late August 2010, I started brainstorming for a unique title that would summarize what the purpose of my online blog in a nutshell. I went through a process before going with Captivate My Mind. I thought about how a really good story and how the characters and story can stay with you well after the last page is turned.  I thought about how songs can get stuck in your head and you start humming the tune. What's a word that encapsulate that meaning? 

tr.v. cap·ti·vat·ed, cap·ti·vat·ing, cap·ti·vates
1. To attract and hold by charm, beauty, or excellence. See Synonyms at charm.
2. Archaic To capture.
In other words, Captivate means 'to hold the attention of by fascinating or enchanting the person's mind'. I had originally wanted to go with 'Captivate My Heart', but there's a whole debate on what people use to think or love with their heart or their mind. I just thought maybe there exists a blog or website that's called Captivate My Heart, so I stuck with Captivate My Mind because I wanted this blog to be more than just a declaration of my obsession. I wanted the blog to be a place where I can intelligently and critically write about the things I love.  Of course, I am aware there are thousands and millions of online blogs that feature reviews, but I wanted to make one that belong sole to my own addiction to TV dramas series and more.

Why do choose to include American and Asian entertainment in your review blog?

I am an Asian-American with Chinese and Vietnamese heritage. I grew up reading and watching a lot of TV that had characters who were blonde/brunette/red hair and had blue/green/brown eyes. The Asian part of me wanted a character that had the physical characteristics of my own heritage. Of course, I had heard of folk tales and stories from my own culture, but mostly in the main stream of things, we Asians are still somewhat of a minority group. Even now, there aren't many Asian characters in mainstream TV shows.  When I was growing up there was Claudia from the Babysitters Club book series that was an Japanese American. I know. There's plenty of kung fu movies with Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Donnie Yen and the like. But it seems that is all most Americans seem to know about the Asian/Chinese movie industry.

When I was little, people always see Asians as Chinese. It's like being Asian meant you're Chinese, Laos or Filipino. To be more exact, I have some Chinese blood somewhere up the family tree line and I am a South East Asian from a Vietnamese family too.  Therefore, there is always a sense of split identity being American born and carrying the blood, the traditions and culture of an Asian heritage. As much as I was a fan of American TV, I was also a great fan of the Chinese TV Serials that TVB (a Hong Kong and Cantonese speaking production company) had produced. I spent a lot of my childhood and adolescent and even now I still watch Chinese TV serials.  And please do not call it Chinese Soap opera. It makes me think of the American daytime soap opera, which does not even remotely the same as Chinese TV serials or  any Asian TV serials at that.

I was a great fan of TVB/Taiwanese TV serials for the greater twenty-something years of my life. Then about 8 years ago, I started watching Japanese and Korean dramas. Japanese Doramas were different from the other Asian entertainment because they usually have TV serials that have a short quantity of episodes. In the U.S., you would refer to it as a mini-series.  However, the Japanese entertainment uses two different formats: renzoku  (a drama continues with more than one episode) and tanpatsu (or one-shot - very similar to the American movie made for TV). Japanese dorama do have longer length TV serials referred to as taiga meaning 'great river' as in a great river of time, but taiga type series are not solely for period dramas.

 Korean Dramas serials have a stigma (or how people misconceive K-Dramas) of only having stories where lovers have terminal disease or where two presumed siblings turn out to not be siblings because one of them were switched at birth type stories. Yes, that may might be true in the early 2000s. However, Korean TV scriptwriters have gone beyond those terminal disease and sappy stories. It has really evolved with the audience's change of interests and expectations. There are still common Korean drama schticks that many Korean drama viewers can list out easily. However, Korean dramas still have unique cultures, characters and stories that cannot be found in American culture or its entertainment.  In short, Korean and Japanese TV serials has its unique attraction that keeps me intrigued by its detailed and suspenseful storytelling.

Anyways, I'm afraid I'm getting a bit side-tracked.  Yes, Asian TV serials is a whole another world difference compared to American TV shows.When I watch Chinese, Japanese or Korean dramas, it fulfills my need for an Asian  identity or culture while living in the U.S. and turning on TV to see only a few ethnic TV channels or  very few Asian actors featured in American TV show/movies. Even so, I am still a fan of many American TV shows and movies.

Captivate My Mind is where all these worlds come together as an fusion or union of who I am and just a little place where I can write and record my obsessions.  With hope, I would like to find kindred spirits that share similar experiences.

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