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Seri sez: The Perils of Priest Blogging

January 8, 2009

hazardBack when Jov and I started World of Snarkcraft, I was really only reading one Priest blog regularly: World of Matticus. (And yeah, I know it’s not a ‘Priest blog’ anymore but… it used to be!) Jov and I had toyed with the idea of starting our own blog for a while, but it wasn’t until the So You Think You Can Blog contest that we really started thinking more seriously about it.

Sure, we were both WoM rejects in the end (a badge that remains proudly/defiantly in our sidebar to this day) but we had a vision of a Valhalla for snark… a no-holds-barred the-truth-hurts sort of place where we could be as blunt/snarky as we wanted while getting the word out about what does and does not make a good raiding Holy Priest. I felt like it was kind of a risky venture, because we can be brutal sometimes… no one was as surprised as I was when people actually enjoyed it.

In the last few months we’ve made 48 posts (49 if you count this one) and have received 488 comments, not to mention e-mails and the occasional in-game whisper. We have over 100 subscribers to our RSS feed(s), and on new post days we’re inching toward the 600 total views mark. It still boggles my mind that over 100 people read every new post that I make the day that it is posted, and it has made me a bit neurotic about trying to come up with topics that are relevant, informative and (to an extent) entertaining.

You’d think that it would be helpful to read other WoW blogs, which I do. A lot of our regular commenters are other bloggers, and I make a point to add their blogs to my Google Reader if they are relevant to my interests. My feed list has grown in leaps and bounds since WoS launched, but I’ve “met” some very interesting people who all seem to have interesting things to say. Most of these new-to-me blogs are Priest blogs… really, I hadn’t realized quite how many there are out there.

You’d also think that reading posts from other Priest blogs might inspire me somehow or make me think of related topics I could turn into posts of my own. Sometimes it does. More often, it makes it harder to settle on a topic from week to week because I feel like it’s all been done (often better) by someone else. I don’t want to be redundant, but at the same time I wonder if a little redundancy is necessary because not everyone reads umpteen Priest blogs as religiously as I do. I guess that’s what link round-ups are for, but I want to provide some content of my own too. For the last few weeks I’ve waffled about topics right up until my ‘deadline’ and I can’t help but wonder… am I the only one that has this problem?

Maybe I read too many blogs. Maybe I am too concerned about trying to come up with content that is unique, interesting and reference-worthy. I think I’ve fallen into the trap of trying to make every post a page for the Holy Priest Handbook, because I have done so many posts that fit the bill. I’m going to try and break out of that trap in the coming weeks with more editorial-style commentary/snark, and in the interest of nailing down a topic for a Thursday post earlier than Wednesday morning I’m going to post the schedule for the rest of January now. Ha! Take that, procrastination.

  • 1/15: 0/2 IDS; It’s not just for noobs anymore.
  • 1/22: I <3 Penance: A Rebuttal.
  • 1/29: WWS Revealed: How to self-review to improve (healing) performance.
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27 comments

  1. I’m happy that you’re happy that I rejected you. Wait… did that sound right?

    Although I think that was probably the best thing that could’ve happened. Without that fateful “no!”, I doubt Snarkcraft would be here right now =)!

    Now if I were a blog critic or something, it’d go something like this:

    “The blogging tag team of Jov and Seri know how to introduce their own sense of snarkiness and style in the WoW blogosphere today. A must read for any healer looking to face the realities of raiding.”


  2. that wasn’t very snarky at all.
    <3 you anyway!


  3. The whole point about blogging is to bring your own view point and input across. The fact the topic might have been covered before certainly isn’t the point in the internet, it is the alternative view point.


  4. Ha! You’re definitely not alone.

    Also, don’t feel beholden to your audience – write what you want, when you want to. It’s tempting to dull your snarky edge as you get more readers, try and appeal to the broader audience.

    Be yourselves. That’s what we came here for anyway.

    Also, ignore other priest blogs when they post stuff. It’s hard, especially when someone *coughs and glares at Matticus* posts the exact same topic you were about to hit “Publish” on…but as readers, it’s good for us to read the same thing multiple times (maybe something will actually stick that way). It’s an absolute guarantee that you will find some way to approach a topic that will click with one of your readers in a way that the other umpteen posts on the subject did not.

    I don’t care if I read eleventy billion posts about…say…discipline specs. I will read them all, and I’ll learn something from each one.

    And, by the same token, if you wrote a post about the fight that broke out over by the Dalaran well, I’d read that too. *grins*


  5. I also find myself worried about being redundant when creating new posts. As someone just starting out, I want/need to create a lot of posts to bring traffic to my blog but I too feel as though much of the information I could write about has allready been discussed by a number of different bloggers.


  6. Edited my Signature to reflect my actual website. Forgot to add my host domain….woops :)

    http://talesofamage.dingblog.com


  7. I really like your blog. Between yours, WoM, and Pugnacious Priest, those are my main priest blogs. That being said I’m looking forward to your blog about wws since I really have no idea how to use it (yet).


  8. Very much looking forward to the 1/29 post. And all future posts as well. As a reader of blogs, I don’t want or expect every post I read to completely reinvigorate the way I understand the game. There just isn’t enough information to let so many people make so many unique insights so many times per week. On the other hand, there is plenty of space for personality to shine in the blogs, and I love getting snippets and parcels of Wow know-how wrapped in huge bursts of personality. Which is what both you and Jov seem to go with, so yay!


  9. I just started blogging and I’m already in the “Shit, but they all do it better than me!” boat.

    But it’s always good to get a different perspective…right?

    …that’s what I’m telling myself.


  10. @ Matticus – Aw, shucks. Thank you. :)

    @ Wyn – It wasn’t supposed to be. I have depth! I swear. >.>

    @ Boobsihazdem – True enough, but there’s only so much ‘point of view’ when it comes to the sorts of topics I’ve been writing about lately.

    @ Ego – OMG who told you about the fight?! Hehe. Thanks for giving me something to think about, you’ve really hit the nail on the head.

    @ Frostpact – Read the comments here whenever you find yourself feeling that way. I know I will be. Good luck with your blog!

    @ Priestgiblet – Here’s hoping I can live up to the hype for that WWS post. I scheduled it for 3 weeks out because it’s going to be a bit time-intensive to put together. Glad you’re enjoying WoS!

    @ Xtian – I think letting your personality shine when you blog is harder to do when you’re thinking about it than when you’re not. Thanks for making me think about it. *laugh*

    @ Ambrosyn – Welcome to the neighborhood. :)


  11. @ Seri – I am sure a brief primer on comparative analysis of WWS for various healing specs/classes would be welcome in the 1/29 post. <.<


  12. I was so happy when I stumbled on this blog a couple of weeks ago. It was full of my favorites things – priesting information, snark, and on my server to boot! I’ve pointed several others here since then.

    I read several priest websites. To echo what Ego said, even when reading the same topic on multiple sites, each usually has something unique to offer, whether it’s a better way of explaining that makes you go “oh yeah” or a new approach to using an old talent/ability. Not everyone learns in the same manner, and having multiple points of view often helps those of us in leadership positions find an alternate method for discussion with people who just don’t get it under one explanation.

    And the snark, it’s just oh so delicious.


  13. @ Blee — Mischief Blee?

    /server wave! (if not Mischief Blee, kindly disregard… these are not the priests you are looking for)


  14. I think you are both doing a great job…and I for one like reading several different takes on the same subject. We are not all going to agree 100% and other views help me to think out my own, if that makes any sense at all. I’m constantly on the look out for new ideas, different ways to do things, and just different thoughts. I even spy on other priests by keeping them targeted while I heal through Grid/Clique just so I can see what spells they cast. I never know when I’m going to learn something new.

    Oh and…the snark must stay! That is the best thing about this blog! :)


  15. Great site, keep it up and don’t change


  16. What Ego said. Write what you want. If your not enjoying it you might as well stop. After all it doesn’t pay that well :-)


  17. I sometimes feel guilty that I don’t mention priests enough – That I QQ to much – or drop random things/observations that may or may not be specfic to priests.. but I’m writing firstly for me.. then for my audience.. your doing well :) Keep it up, we are still reading!


  18. @ Tarsus – I’ll keep that in mind, thanks!

    @ Blee – Always nice to hear from another SC’er! Thanks for the encouragement. :)

    @ Ayslin – Rest assured, the snark isn’t going anywhere. Nor are we. :)

    @ Castra – Thanks, we do try!

    @ BobTurkey – I hope this post didn’t give folks the impresion that I wasn’t enjoying myself. That’s certainly not the case… I just have been a bit frustrated lately with topic selection and this was my way of working through it.

    @ Pugnaciouspriest – Part of me wants to say that it must be nice to only worry about pleasing yourself. The rest of me knows that I’m my own harshest critic. >.>


  19. #1 reason I don’t blog. It feels like everything has been covered, if not on blogs then on EJ. Especially since EJ has started doing such helpful summary posts.


  20. If you keep writing, a niche will come to you. As will the readers. “If you build it, they will come” much? =P

    I write a hunter blog. As the world knows, there are basically more hunter blogs out there than… any other type of blog, rivaled possibly only by druid blogs. I consider myself to be a relatively successful hunter blog, although I am eternally living in the shadow of one Big Red Kitty. Somehow I still manage to find a lot of stuff to write about.

    I think it’s partially because a good chunk of those hunter blogs out there aren’t really “hunter help” blogs so much as “hunter game experience” blogs– people talking about their new pet or their new gear. And even with the hunter help blogs that are still there, I can still think of stuff to write by focusing on a different niche– others offer guides for raiding or PvPing level 80s, I offer guides on getting back to the basics and “You’re going to get this spell at level 20, this is how you use it, step by step.”

    On top of that, I’d like to think people read me for my writing. Not sure why, but I think it is true. Similarly, I think people read you guys for your writing. You do have a definite style. Keep it up!


  21. World of Snarkcraft is one my favorite blog and will forever grace my blogroll.

    One thing I have learned throughout the years (both IRL and in gaming) is not to worry too much about what others think of you. Be happy with your creativity and inventions!

    But if you care what I think (which you probably shouldn’t) I just want to tell you guys(gals) that you produce one of the most entertaining blogs around. I love reading your thoughts and will continue to do so!

    Fara


  22. I love your blog. I enjoy the snarkiness. And I especially like your layout. You both have such a purdy blog. The colours are great and all your little clipart and pictures make me smile. Like when your mad and you put a picture waving your finger. hehehe simple pleasures.
    I enjoy all topics, variety is the key. If you ever stumped for a topic I would love to see a fashion show of your favourite outfits and fugliest outfits. Got the idea with your previous post with the picture of Seri and Jov in the different dresses.


  23. @ Aelinna – I dunno, I still have a bitch of a time trying to find anything on EJ that isn’t a reference guide of some sort. Just yesterday I was poking through their ‘simple questions’ thread for Rogues, which has dozens of pages of discussion interspersed with questions that may or may not be answered. *sigh* I both love and hate EJ… it’s a victim of its own success, with those 40+ page threads. No way I can sit down and read through all that, my eyes glaze over.

    @ Pike – It’s great that you found a niche for yourself. I feel like we have a pretty good one here at WoS. When we started, we decided that we didn’t want to do diary posts because there are plenty of Priest blogs out there that do that. Instead, we were going to focus more on sharing our experience than our experiences and I think we’ve succeeded on that front pretty well. :)

    @ Fara – Thank you for your comments! Although I try to tell myself that it doesn’t matter to me what others think… it sort of does, because we don’t just have this blog because we like snarking about stupid people. If no one was reading, we probably wouldn’t bother posting. We have this blog because we like snarking about stupid people to an audience. A certain amount of that involves worrying whether we’re chasing readers off. ;)

    @ Missmedic – I’ve come to rely more heavily on pilfered clip art than posed screenshots lately because WoWModelViewer is still borked (as far as I know). Jov hasn’t been able to get much use out of it since Wrath, and she’s been the puppetmaster pulling those particular strings since the WoWModelViewer for Mac has been defunct even longer than its Windows counterpart. I’ve discovered, though, that it greatly amuses me to search for clip art that is in some way related (some more obscurely than others) to my topic without necessarily being WoW-specific. I think my favorite to date was the limbo image in my Ethical /gquit post.


  24. Wait you don’t want competition? But I love you over at Tales!

    But I hear what you on writing posts and seeing others that are better or done before you. Ironically my post from today is shockingly similar to a WoM post from a guest blogger today. Not too similar, but definitely similar.


  25. My blog entries are much more likely to be about something stupid rather than something informative. What can I say, I’m not exactly the deep and intellectual type. Plus, nothing clues people into my lack of gameplay knowledge quicker than trying to write something informative.


  26. I feel the same way you do – while I certainly am not on your same level, viewer wise OR content-wise, I feel like whenever I have an idea, it’s either been done (and done better) by someone else, or that it isn’t “interesting enough” for the few readers I do get. Feeling like you have to write for an audience certainly can mess with your usual style, or keep you from posting altogether, which is what I’m suffering from right now.

    The holy posts that you have always help me, but I’m never opposed to some good old fashioned snark, either. :)


  27. Much as I enjoy the pages ripped from the Holy Priest Handbook, I actually love some of the more irreverent posts even more. Keep up the good work!



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