Feb 282014
 

WoW Insider announced today (though we’ve known for a bit) that a large budget cut is coming, which means all the freelancer class columnists (like me) have been cut loose from writing. Truthfully, I haven’t written anything for WoWI in a long time, but I had always been planning a comeback somewhere in the back of my mind. Now that that door has been closed, I’m somewhat at a loss. I’ll get back to that point, though; right now, I’m going to reminisce a bit.

My first post

One of my favorite screenshots.

It was January of 2011, Cataclysm was in full swing,  and as you might have expected, it was a feral DPS guide. I do so like writing guides, for some reason. Skim it if you want a blast from the past– Keep up the Mangle debuff! Spec 0/32/9! We can bearcat! :) I was much more into WoW then; I hadn’t hit burnout, my family was still doing okay, and I wanted to know all the things so I could be the very best that ever was.

Believe it or not, I actually deployed to Iraq during this time period. Somehow, I managed to keep churning out a column for WoWI every week or two; I was in a part of Iraq that had reasonably good internet (in context) and I was actually able to keep playing the game. I got kicked from one PUG because they didn’t believe me that my AFK was due to ducking and covering from artillery fire. :) As things ended up, Iraq was pretty dull for my unit once we got settled, and being on my own meant plenty of writing time. I actually hacked out my first attempt at creative writing for the Blizzcon writing contest in 2011; it’s here, if you want to indulge yourself in some bad fanfiction.  I also put in hours upon hours before finally successfully soloing Kael’Thas in Tempest Keep; he’s a pushover now, of course, but he was no joke at level 85 in Firelands gear.  I also knocked off Naxxramas and Ulduar later in the expansion, though my attention was quickly distracted by the new shiny; monks.

Sleep, write, work; pick two

I played monks extensively during the MoP beta, and enjoyed them a good bit. (All the druids were busy arguing about whether Heart of the Wild and Symbiosis were the end of the game as we knew it, or something.) I got this crazy idea; I’ll start up a monk blog! It’ll be awesome! I’ll be the go-to guy for monks and feral druids! Yeah.

Trying to keep up two class columns on WoWI and two personal blogs took its toll; the quality of my work started falling off significantly. Even so, I had a bunch of things prepared for when MoP was to go live…then this happened. That was pretty much the end of my freelance writing career. I kept it going for a while, but after that incident, I was burned out and just going through the motions, even though I didn’t realize it at the time. I don’t want to rehash that again, so I’ll stop there – instead I’ll say that some of the internal email WoWI threads were incredibly epic/funny discussions, usually spurred by epic/trolling comments or “suggestions.” (The suggestion box? Whatever you sent in to WoWI was visible to every writer on the site. If you said something extremely foolish in there, we were likely all talking about you. :) Some highlights (of course, none of these are verifiable and could’ve been someone trolling, but still):

  • The MANY people who confused WoWI with Blizz and sent in personal info/CC #’s to try to get their accounts restored/fixed/etc
  • The people who wrote in saying “writer X should be fired because (insert poorly-written rant here)
  • The girl who wanted to be a booth…”model” for Blizzcon
  • The guy who complained because he was being shown diet pill ads on the sidebar
  •  The guy who repeatedly asked us to feature his website/stream which was nothing but him ganking newbies (and when we refused, created several false identities to also suggest his site)
What now?

I’ve pretty much come full circle; I loved WoW, hated WoW, and am now coming back around to thinking about resubscribing. :) Now that things have stabilized in the family life some, I’ve got a chance to come back and do some things; I just have to accept that I can’t do everything, which is really tough for me to do. I’d like to reconnect with my guild, re-make some friends, and just generally rejoin the community without being focused 100% on “raiding or GTFO.” I’m not sure I’m at the point where I can do that, as I have a huge overachiever streak in games. We’ll see – garrisons are looking mighty interesting…

 Posted by at 12:03 am

  6 Responses to “In which I write self-indulgently, &c”

  1. Welcome back \o/

  2. Glad things are turning around for you sir ! Hope to see you in WoD !

  3. Thanks for writing passionately this entire time. I started a druid way back in vanilla, got to about level 20, and only picked back up in Wrath. In the early times while I was leveling I read everything I could so that I might have some kind of an idea of what I was doing when I hit max level to help my little brother’s guild. You were almost all of the reason I picked up and played feral in Cataclysm, kept with the game when I felt burned out, and it’s paid off immensely. Thanks for everything, your service, your writing, and caring enough about druids to share with everyone.

    • Aliandor, thanks for this reply! Cheered me up significantly tonight. Glad you’ve enjoyed my writing (or lack thereof, lately) :)

  4. Reading this post has made my day! I just resubscribed to WoW last night after a 1.5 year break in which I went through the similar motions of loving (vanilla, BC, cata), hating (wotlk), and coming full circle (MoP) and the first thing I wanted to do was come back to your blog since I’ve been a fervent fluid druid follower since 2009. I fully expected you to have moved on or that the site would be down, but i’m so glad that you’re still writing and even happier that you’re thinking of returning just when I did. :P

    Thank you for writing and sharing your love of ferals with the druid community. For 5 years, you were always the reminder and support I fell back on that being a feral cat was totally viable and that I was not a community of 1. Especially in pvp. Although, that may still be true. :) Thanks again for your thoughts, passion, and service!

  5. I’m currently about to come back to wow myself, nice to see, it’s not only me who have there comeback after a timeout :)

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