To Boldly Nerd…

Video games, pen&paper RPGs and other nerdery

Day 2 – Why I decided to start a blog

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Tank like a GirlMy first blog was Tank Like A Girl, on the same domain that I am currently hosting this blog. It was not the first time I blogged, but it was my first step out into acknowledging myself as a blogger. I have been a LiveJournal user since 2002. I was really active in LJ, and just about all my American MU* friends were active as well. I guess you could call it the heyday of LJ. My American WoW guild Daughters of the Horde is actually to this day an LJ-based guild. All members need to be female and have an LJ account, as the LJ community replaces guild forums. I don’t know how long they can keep this going, because LJ is becoming more and more unreliable, and prone to be offline for days due to yet another DoS attack on the servers. I for myself for the first time in ten years no longer have a paid LJ account.

But let’s turn back the clock. In 2007 and 08 I was still going strong. As I work full-time, the majority of my WoW playtime was on weekends, and I played a lot. Every Monday morning I dutifully posted all my WoW activities and screenshots in my LJ, even though at the time I didn’t have a lot of WoW playing friends who read my LJ. I just loved writing it all down. In late 2007, my guild finally made the push into 10-man raiding. It was an exhilarating time in my WoW life for me. Back in the day, it required effort to get your foot in the raiding door. You needed to make sure that folks all had the Karazhan key, and for that key you required all the major level 70 instances at the time. My SO and I really busted ass and maybe even cracked some whips to get people there. We wrote our first raid rules. It was all new territory for us. We were joint raid-leaders.

The level 70 instances shaped me as a tank. I felt my skills evolve as I learned how to become a better tank. I learned how to properly pull, how to use line of sight to my advantage, how to deal with multiple mobs back when warriors had no AoE tanking tools in their arsenal. It was glorious. I turned into a min-maxer brooding over gear lists and pondering how to improve. My guild’s traditionally always been low on tanks. In 2007 it was me and another warrior, and occasionally we had paladins helping out. But mostly it was us warriors. It will probably sound terribly petty and maybe a touch passive-aggressive (which I hate, I prefer a more blunt approach to conflict) but I mostly started blogging because I felt the other warrior was doing a couple things wrong in her gearing choices. She played a lot more casually than I did at the time. In my LJ I wrote a passionate plea that parry gems were not the right choice and to not always gem for socket color, in hopes that she would read it and take to it. I wrote a warrior guide for my guild’s LJ. I hoped she would read this and take something away from it. I was too chicken to actually address her in-game, because I didn’t want to piss her off. Eventually, in WotLK I did actually talk to her, and she stopped raiding with us and didn’t really talk to me anymore. Tact: not my strength. Alas! But I digress.

Anyhow, I found I enjoyed this light theorycrafting, and I really enjoyed sharing helpful tips. There weren’t a lot of warrior resources out there, and I felt that a lot of them were catering to the hardcore raiders. But casual folks needed some love too.

I greatly enjoyed Veneretio’s writings, he was my absolute hero when it came to blogging, and always will be what I consider the shining beacon of the WoW prot warrior community. I feel that when he quit WoW, it was a real loss. I felt encouraged by his blog, and so in June 2008 I finally chose to follow in his footsteps with my first post. I was a prolific writer at the time, and looking at old archives, I wish I still wrote that much. It was an exciting time, when my readership built slowly and then exploded when Tankspot put a spotlight on me just before the release of WotLK. I got addicted to receiving comments, and it was always a delight to see that the same people kept coming back for more. Veneretio asked me to join Twitter, and I did, and got to interact with my readers even more.

A couple of times I got WoW-Insidered, the WoW blog equivalent to slashdotted, and I really had very solid numbers for my readership. Ultimately, that changed blogging for me a bit. It put a lot of pressure on me. I started to get the first trolls who accused me of copying numbers off EJ without understanding them. It started to feel like an obligation, not a fun pastime, because I had set out with the high goal of not just being a WoW diary, but a warrior resource. This and my ever increasing disenchantment with the direction WoW was headed in led to my posting frequency to decline and then die. I never felt I was a strong theorycrafter, but I was a decent warrior tank who knew how to play before dungeons became 15-minute zergfests.

I still wanted to write, but my heart was not in WoW and not on warriors anymore. I still wanted to write, about other games, and books and anything else that crossed my mind. So I set up a network install for WordPress, and this little blog was born. It doesn’t even have 10% of the readership that Tank Like A Girl had, but that’s fine. It’s just my blogging corner, no resource of any kind. Oestrus recently made a post that resonated with me. Pageviews really do not matter, as long as you put your heart into your blogging. I intend to do just that. I still get excited about every single comment though. 🙂 I don’t understand this new trend of 2012 of commentless blogs, because it’s not about writing into the void for me, it’s knowing that people read, enjoyed or disagreed. That’s the power of blogging for me.

3 Comments

  1. Heh, Livejournal users represent! 🙂 I’ve had mine since 2004 and I’m still using it as my personal diary. If I ever stop I intend to use one of those services to get it printed out, so my future children can read about what kind of stuff their mother angsted about in her twenties.

    A lot of the points in this post resonate with me as well, except that I was never a theorycrafter – I just wanted to write opinion pieces. And maybe you should be glad that the other warrior never read your posts. I once wrote a slightly ranty one about carrying weak healers, and was surprised to find out that my guild leader at the time had found and read it… needless to say, major drama ensued. 😛

    I’ll have to keep an eye on future posts of this challenge. 🙂
    Shintar recently posted…Reasons to play a trooperMy Profile

    • I haven’t used my LJ in years. I mostly write snippets of what I used to post at LJ at G+. For me, Livejournal is like a memory of more angsty days filled with silly memes, a reminder of my MUSHing days. But oh boy, there was so much angst.

      Maybe the other warrior read the posts and simply didn’t apply them to her. As I mentioned, I talked to her as a raid leader later, and wow, it did not go well. I always tried to be very careful with my rants, because dramabombs in game suck!

  2. Reading! And bookmarking you! 😀

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