State of the Rez: To Blog or Not to Blog

The last time I posted anything on Waiting for Rez was in July of last year. Since then I have continued to play MMOs, and continued to participate in conversations on Twitter and on the Massively OP website however the lights were off here on my blog. What happened? Since I’m currently deciding whether to continue blogging or not, I figured a good place to start would be to explain the silence.

When I first chose to start this blog, it was because I enjoyed conversations with other commenters on Massively about specific MMOs and the industry. I saw bloggers continuing those thoughts and ideas and decided to do the same when the old Massively site was closing down and the new Massively OP was still just an idea. My goal was to write once a week (it then became three times a week) and the assumption on my part was that writing would take the place of one of my gaming sessions, taking only about 30-45 minutes of my time.

Instead I spent hours on articles that I wrote and instead of supplanting a night of gaming it became an activity I did in addition to the MMOs. Between playing, writing, and reading other blogs on MMOs my hobby was consuming too much of my time. I work full time, I’m married, and I have two kids and all of these things are more important to me than MMOs. I’m a member of a local church and love my church family and I love Jesus Christ even more and these things are more important to me than MMOs. However if you were to make a pie chart of how I spent my time, you would have (rightly) assumed the thing I valued most was MMO games and the communities that surround them.

So I stopped writing. It actually came as a surprise to me too, I never planned on closing down Waiting for Rez or set a date for when my last post would be. Instead I just lost interest seemingly overnight and moved on. I don’t know how something like that looks from your perspective, but from mine— especially in hindsight—it was a clear indicator that God had cut the umbilical cord linking me to harmful, obsessive behavior.

For months now, whenever I have thought of writing again I have shrugged my shoulders and decided I didn’t really want to spend the time available to me in that way. I still look at the amount of time I spend gaming and feel like it’s still a bit obsessive but at least I’m no longer spending hours almost daily writing and reading blog posts. That needed to stop and I’m glad that it did.

So why start up again now? Well, I’m not sure that I actually am. Like I said, I think about it off and on and I certainly have regular ideas that I could blog about but ultimately up until today I’ve chosen not to return. For me to start blogging again a few things would need to change:

  1. I need to schedule a time for writing that is not in addition to the time I normally spend playing MMOs. I have to make a choice and if I’m trying to write again in the evening when I should be with my wife or my kids then I will stop blogging again.
  2. I need to learn to write shorter posts and to be okay with one round of editing before publishing. I can no longer spend 2-3 hours making sure a post is perfect; it never was anyway.
  3. I cannot try to read everyone else’s blogs, and the ones I do read cannot conflict with family time. Just as with the writing, it either must be done during the time I would normally game or not at all.

In the end I may be done with writing about MMOs whether I’m able to stick to these three things or not. At the very least I’ve been wanting to post one more time to explain the disappearance. As much as I enjoy feeling like I am a part of the MMO blogging community, it’s more important to me that I belong to my family and church first and foremost.

And if I don’t see you all on WordPress, you can still find me in game.

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13 thoughts on “State of the Rez: To Blog or Not to Blog

  1. I was in the same boat when starting. Saw how much Justin liked to blog and with massively going out, I wanted to try and start my own.
    Best of luck keeping up your managed time with family.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Completely understand where you’re coming from. There are days I don’t read blogs, and there are days that I use my lunch hour to cherry pick from Feedly which few I want to read–AND THEN mark the rest as read so I don’t feel tempted to go back to them. I can’t make it a priority to read every single one–it’s not humanly possible. Just some suggestions if you’re interested in keeping it a hobby.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I need to look into feedly. I’ve seen people mention it but I’ve never used it. Lately I have just read random posts that I happen to catch via Twitter. That keeps my reading varied and light.

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  3. Sorry to hear that your blogging turned into something you didn’t want it to be, as I always enjoyed your posts. I’ll be happy as long as I keep seeing you around in other people’s comment sections at least!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! I’m definitely still hanging around. I enjoy the community and conversations, especially since I have zero friends outside of this community that game, let alone play MMOs. I’m the oddball in those circles.

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  4. Loved your articles and our joint-venture and have been (probably still am?) in the same boat. It’s not good when writing a blog becomes a “chore”. I’d simply leave the blog open and see where it goes from there. Chances are that one day, you’ll want to write about something. There’s nothing, besides building a readership, that needs you to blog one, two or three times in a week, month or year.

    I agree, though, last year’s closure of Massively was the main reason for me picking my blogging up again and the interest declined when Massively Overpowered was established- with those articles, the comments section as well as other bloggers who are much better writers than i am, i felt all my communicational needs have been met.

    Concerning the reading of other people’s blogs- i’m sure you’re using some kind of aggregator like Feedly, Bloglovin or Inoreader? If not, i’d highly encourage you to look into those tools; it’s much faster than visiting the sites or even using the WordPress reader feature.

    PS: Justin’s inhuman. I don’t know how he does his thing- he’s also active in church, i think they have four children in the family and he still manages to work for Massively as well as post daily on his own blog…and playing what-do-i-know how many MMOs at level cap.

    Well, i’ll see you around. When/if Twitter really expands the tweet length beyond 140 i can see myself using it more often.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, I enjoyed our combined blogging as well. Most of the problems I’ve run into cone back to my personality more than anything else. I’m obsessive and I can be a perfectionist about some things and when I’m doing something new those two traits combine into a perfect storm.

      My plans right now are to take notes while I game and then see if I can save 30-40 minutes before bed to turn those notes into a post whenever I want to blog. I also need to look into feedly because I’ve never used it. I just had everyone’s blog bookmarked and would cycle between them every day.

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    • I suspect in Justin’s case it helps that his job is all about MMOs. I’d imagine that if he was doing something completely unrelated, he’d struggle to fit all that gaming time in as well. 🙂

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  5. I blog when I feel like it. I usually have more to blog about after a weekend of gaming, so Monday mornings are my most common time to write a post, but if I am too busy that day or something… eh, whatever. I don’t get a whole lot of traffic and those that do come to my blog rarely comment, so it’s definitely not something I’m doing becuz i have a rabid fan base who wants to read about my “core gamer” exploits. I do it becuz it’s fun for me when I can fit it in, but I don’t ever exclude anything else that I find more important either.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s a good approach and along the lines of how I want to view blogging going forward. I was never in it for the clicks but I let my aspirations for how much/ how often I write get bigger than what was reasonable for the time I had available.

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  6. It’s totally okay – you’ve gotta do what is best for you and your family time. Over the years, I’ve started blogging many times, over many different blogs. Sometimes I lasted a few months, sometimes I lasted longer. But in the end, blogging’s meant to be something you enjoy, and if it’s causing stress, then it’s defeating the purpose.

    I firmly believe, though, writers will come back to writing when there’s something in their heart to write about. Words can be a window to your soul, and you’ll know when you have words to share. It should never feel stressed or be at the expense of other things, though.

    I always enjoyed reading your blogs, and you’ve often inspired me to consider my own walk in faith. So things you have written were important to someone. That being said, I want you to do what makes you happiest. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, I really appreciate everything you’ve said here. I do enjoy writing, and even when I wasn’t blogging or putting words to paper I was writing posts in my head. It was just when it came time to sit down and type that I kept choosing not to, and it was probably best to get some distance for a while. I think now that the “frenzy” with which I often tackle new things is behind me, I’ll be more realistic with my time and my goals.

      I like being around other writers/ bloggers/ gamers as well. As I mentioned above, I don’t have people in my life outside this circle who are in to those things and it’s nice to have company here and on Twitter and anywhere else I’ve met people with common interests on the Internet.

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