We’ve all heard the maxim “follow your passion,” but it’s easier said than done. Some people need to make more practical choices to pay the bills, while others feel they don’t have enough time to discover or revisit their passion. Fortunately for Jacob Enero, One Piece, one of the longest-running and most beloved anime and manga series of all time, presented itself as the opportunity to help him pursue his childhood passion for writing came at the right time.
“I have been a frustrated writer since I was a kid,” Enero says. “I read a lot of children’s books, and I wanted to be able to create one someday. So I started making mini-comics. Then in my teenage years, I wrote simple stories on Wattpad, which I never published because I was so shy about my work. But when I became a content creator producing One Piece reviews, I could write my own scripts, which somehow fulfills my childhood dream.”
As a content creator on Bilibili—the go-to streaming platform for anime and gaming fans—Enero produces Tagalog anime analyses and reviews of One Piece. Fans adore the series for its storyline and the fact that each character—whether villain, hero, or side character—has a story to tell. Over 20 years and 1,000 episodes later, a lot of people worldwide are still addicted to the story, eagerly anticipating new episodes, rewatching past episodes, and going to see the recent theatrical movie One Piece Film: Red, one of the highest-grossing Japanese films in the world.
Enero has amassed over 2 million subscribers across his social media pages, including Bilibili. It is the only SEA streaming platform that has all episodes of One Piece, including all One Piece films that have been released until 2021. But beyond the numbers, video content creation has become a means for Enero to pursue his love of writing and freely share his work with others.
Finding treasures buried in childhood memories
Enero started producing videos in late 2019. At that time, he was working as a production supervisor at a manufacturing company—a job that hardly lets one exercise any creative flair. But one day, while Enero was watching the popular anime series Demon Slayer, an idea came to mind: “What if I review this type of video?” he thought. And that’s when he started creating anime content.
Although it was Demon Slayer that helped spark the idea for Enero to become a content creator, focusing his content on One Piece is a no-brainer. “I chose to focus my content on One Piece because it’s part of my childhood memories. It’s the anime that I’d always watched on television since I was 10 years old,” Enero recalls. “I love how the world in One Piece works because the creator (Eiichiro Oda) designed it to parallel real-world events.”
As an avid One Piece fan, Enero aptly adopted the username EneruReview PH. “There’s a character in One Piece called Eneru or Enel, which sounds like my last name. I added the word ‘review’ since the type of content I produce is anime review,” he shares.
“Being an anime review creator gives me the opportunity to express my frustrations, expectations, and share the fun watching an episode with my audience,” he adds.
Making it work
Enero takes productivity and growth seriously. He creates three to four videos a week, and to ensure he has a steady pipeline of content ideas, he tries to tie his next videos to a trending character or find an interesting topic within the latest chapter.
He also constantly interacts with his audience to find new ideas, learn from their feedback, and keep them engaged. If there are any negative comments, he takes them as constructive criticism and uses them to improve his content. “I think it’s about making your viewers part of the content-making process,” Enero says. “In each of my videos, I always ask my viewers to write a comment so that they’d feel that they’re part of it.”
These practices helped him become a better creator over time. Enero says, “My audience helps me grow as a creator, especially when I was starting out. Their trust in me and in what I do serves as my fuel to keep creating high-quality content.”
But while being a content creator allows Enero to follow his passion for writing and creating, the journey has had its share of rough seas.
He admits that balancing his time between his day job, personal life, and content creation is challenging. “The number one enemy of passion is time. You can’t totally let go of your day job because you need to earn money for your family. But if you can manage your time and focus on your goal, I think you can make it work,” he says. To ensure he gives ample time for his passion and career, Enero tries to keep things organized by making a to-do list.
Aside from time management, Enero also struggled with increasing his views and growing his audience as a new content creator. Thankfully, as part of the Bilibili creator community, he received the support he needed to jumpstart his space. As a creator-centric platform, Bilibili backs creators in various ways, including through workshops and mentorships, events and programs, and exclusive access to tools and features to boost traffic and reach.
In Enero’s case, Bilibili enabled him to expand his overall influence as a content creator, reach more anime fans, and gain new followers. “Bilibili gives creators so much support. I love the team’s effort,” he says. “The atmosphere at Bilibili is lighthearted. You can enjoy what you love doing, which for me is watching and talking about anime, while earning some income.”
Journey to the Grand Line
Being a content creator for Enero is more than just fulfilling a childhood passion. He also wants to make the most of this opportunity by contributing to the local anime community. “My goal is to use my content to help nurture the vibrant Pinoy anime culture and eventually expand the influence of anime in the Philippines. I know it’s also Bilibili’s goal, and that’s why I enjoy the community and can see myself thriving here,” he says.
Currently, he’s working on improving his skills as a content creator by learning new video editing techniques and working towards becoming a great writer. “I always watch videos related to video editing so that I’d keep improving every day. I also read books to observe techniques from different authors and adapt them in my own writing,” he shares.
“My advice for aspiring creators is, don’t do it for the money. Do it because you love what you are doing. Put your passion and effort into your work, and I assure you that the views will follow,” he adds.
There are factors in life that make discovering our passion or reigniting our childhood dream seem hardly possible. But Enero’s story teaches us that the right opportunity could come if we remain open to possibilities and never stop improving. Enjoy your own adventure along the Grand Line as Monkey D. Luffy says: “No matter how hard or how impossible it is, never lose sight of your goal”.