Rants tag

Rants, ruminations, and rambling remarks from my mad, muddled, meandering mind.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Daily Grind

There are times when I am really busy with work. I travel on business a fair amount. More precisely, I go places and live there for a few weeks. Depending on several factors, I may or not log in to an MMO, or even do much blogging. Other times, like this month, I am at home, going to the office during the week. I feel like I have more time, or at the very least am more relaxed. I might game more, and I might blog more. I go through spurts of interest in games and blogging. As I mentioned at the beginning of the month, I essentially took a break from blogging—and even gaming really—through most of July.

When I started my first gaming blog, "Rowanblaze Saves Azeroth," I was essentially speaking out into the void. I had no idea what I was doing, or whether anyone cared what I had to say. I'm pretty sure no one did read it, at first. Then I started this blog, met a few other bloggers talking about Star Trek Online, and found not an audience, per se, but a community. People like Scarybooster, who started Developer Appreciation Week because he LOVES games, and wanted to let the people who make them know it. People like MMOGCSyp, and Syl, who got together to do the Battle Bards podcast because they love MMO Soundtracks. (Syp also organized the first Newbie Blogger Initiative in 2012.) People like Xander Hayes, who runs Holosuite Media because of his passion for games and the community. There are dozens more people who inspire me to write. Not the least of which is Belghast the Aggronaut.

I've never met Bel in person. I suspect, at this point, it might a cataclysmic event as two giants rush together in a great bear hug. It came to my attention that he was blogging every day in the spring of last year. I was making an effort to be more community minded and share posts I read on Twitter, and his posts inspired me to write alternate headlines and link to his blog. He was passionate about his games, and his friends. I was happy to become one. He runs House Stalwart, the name a reflection not only of an ideal trait, but of the man himself. In keeping with the general meaning of the suffix -naut; rather than a boisterous, reckless berserker, the Aggronaut is someone who stalwartly sails into the fray, drawing enemy fire to protect his comrades.

If you, Dear Reader, are participating in Blaugust, or recently started through the Newbie Blogger Initiative, I envy you. Your blog was birthed into a community of friends, headed by a giant of a man with a giant heart. You know you're not alone in your endeavors. After all, that is what community is for: to encourage each other and build something no individual possibly could.

Belghast reminded us this morning that Blaugust is more about blogging than blogging every day. It is about establishing a routine for writing, not about making blogging a chore—nor about beating yourself up for not doing it. Just the other day, the venerable Tobold commented that "the only difference between "playing" and "grinding" is whether you are having fun or not."

Blog because you have a passion. Blog because you have an opinion. Blog because you enjoy writing. Blog because it makes you feel part of a community. But whatever you do, don't blog because you feel you have to. Don't blog when it becomes a grind that you dread. And don't blog because there might be a prize at the end of the month.
If you're interested in joining the summer flurry of Blaugust, breeze on over to Belghast's Blaugust Initiative Page on Anook and let him know you're there. It may even mean a small windfall for you, as Belghast has prizes prepared for high achievers.
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  1. But, but... PRIZES!

    Seriously though, I agree with two points very rigorously. First, birthing a blog via the NBI or Blaugust gets you an instant audience, and that's something everyone wants to some degree. I wish these types of events were going on back in the day.

    Second, your whole last paragraph. Don't treat blogging like a chore. Treat it like a game. I feel empowered when I do so.

    Great post!