The Newbie Blogger Initiative is having a bit of trouble gaining some traction this year, so a few of us bloggers came up with an alternative solution, we’ll try to share advice and experience to new bloggers and those trying to regain their spark again. The title is the first prompt, with a reverse prompt for new bloggers at the end of the post (no spoilers).
A quick bit of history, I’ve been blogging since mid-February of last year, giving me only a year and some change worth of experience. However, it’s not my first rodeo to writing. I’ve done some light writing for stories on and off for most my life and even elected a writing class in highschool. Writing is a blast because I love stories. Currently reading up on Rakuno’s ARPil character story and enjoying it.
Video games are another love I share. In school I would discuss popular games, and come up with new games between my brother and friends. I would play Dungeons and Dragons, come up with adventures, and create characters and backgrounds. I appreciate the gaming culture like no other.
So what convinced me to want to blog about games?
Beginning of last year was a pretty hard time for me. My favorite gaming news site, Massively was being axed by their AOL overlords. This was my home for years for MMO gaming news. I was really connected to the writers and community that formed around it and felt I was going to lose it. I didn’t want to lose what I’ve cherished, I wanted to fight it and saw a movement of bloggers trying to keep the flame going. I was already in the middle of trying my hand at YouTube that it felt like the perfect combo. I can make silly videos and playthroughs while simultaneously talking about these games and creating stories. If anything else, I had to try to keep the Massively flame going.
It also benefited me because being able to talk about games was impacted since I was no longer around my highschool friends. My circle was very game averse aside from my nephews that only want to play popular games, but they don’t really have the appreciation that I do. All I had left was my brother and my recently converted gaming mother to talk shop with. Since blogging, that circle greatly increased to people who know what I mean when I say “let me kill this boss first so I can find a safe place to afk.” It’s been a boon to now talk more about my love of games.
Back to my Massively story, it was really hard on me because it takes me a very long time to feel comfortable around people. I think I was a lurker on Massively for a year before I finally forced myself and made an account to comment. Then another year to feel comfortable doing that. I was relieved when Bree and the crew decided to start their own MMO news site, Massively OP, that I had thought about just focusing on YouTube again. Instead, I enjoyed blogging so much that I kept it going. Since blogging, I was still very shy talking around the community, but after a year and getting comfortable with everyone, I did the unthinkable to my former self - joined Jaedia’s newly created gaming bloggers Discord channel. I’m sure some of you know what I mean when I say that it wasn’t an easy thing for me to do.
So to really sum all this up, writing about games really helped me deal with my social awkwardness and disabling shyness. Sure, it took me years and a strong push, but it was the catalyst to help me open up social opportunities that I’ve didn’t think I wanted.
Conversely, if you are just starting out or looking to start blogging, think about, or better yet write about, what inspires you in your game time to write? Is it the love of the game, the want to discuss it with others, or do you feel like you have ideas of your own you’d like to share? Whatever it is, let it out, one way or another. If you’re still unable to share, try starting more gently and put it in a private blog or physical notebook. Just the act of writing can help give you perspective of your own thoughts.