(image completely unrelated, but hey – it’s a pretty FFXIV screenshot!)
That title makes it sound much more like a challenge, which is fun!
Naithin batsignalled me via the Blaugust Discord to write a response to his recent topic brainstorming post and I figured it would be an interesting topic to write about, given that I often write about my experiences in gaming but not myself as much.
So, I’ve decided to step up and answer these questions seven!
- What hobbies or interest do you have that you might not regularly include on your blog?
When I was keeping up with my old Tuesday Hype Train posts, I was pretty open about most of my hobbies, but since that has stopped mostly these days, let’s discuss. I’m a big pro wrestling fan, to the point that I briefly trained to be one. I wasn’t as prepared as I could have been and so I stopped, but I’m hoping to give it another shot soon!
I’ve dived into talking about a bit here, but I am a big PC hardware junkie – I’ve owned some interesting stuff and I tend to watch the industry change and grow with a lot of vigor. I used to, in more prosperous times, be a yearly buyer of a new system, but now it’s tamed to maybe 1-4 upgrades per year! (this year – a Ryzen 9 3900X CPU, a vertical GPU mount, and on the list still is a USB DAC, headphone amplifier, and audiophile headphones – leaning towards a pair of BeyerDynamic cans at the moment!)
Travel is a big one – I’m about two months away from going on my second trip circling the globe, which is really exciting!
I do a lot of 3D modelling – usually more architectural stuff versus nature or living things, but I’m hoping to learn how to do more!
- Are you learning any skills at the moment? If not, what would you like to learn?
In preparation for my upcoming world trip, I’m learning enough Italian to make it through Rome easily, alongside brushing up on my Japanese for Tokyo. I’m signed up for a Blender course through my work to learn a new 3D modelling tool. Lastly, I’m learning emotional intelligence – it sounds very vague and weird, but the last decade or so has been an incredibly difficult one for me and a lot of my life in that time has been rebuilding after things fell apart. I feel much more resilient for it, and I can’t say that I’d change things given how I’ve pulled out of the nosedive, so hey!
- If you were invited on a one-way trip to Mars to establish a new colony, would you go?
I’d want to, but man, that is a scary prospect. It would be fascinating, but I haven’t even moved out of my hometown, much less gone into space – I value a degree of comfort a bit too much and I’d probably end up saying no.
- What is the one thing that you most want readers to come away from your blog with? A feeling, thought, or understanding.
A mix of excitement and constructive dissatisfaction. My two main games and topics of discussion are in vastly different states right now – WoW is arguably at its lowest point while FFXIV is cresting a wave of positive momentum post-Shadowbringers. I think I want to be able to share why it is that one might not be thrilled with WoW at the moment but still want to play, while also sharing FFXIV with an audience who may have a distorted image of what the game is, while being honest about its flaws. Ultimately, though, the excitement wins – my writing voice on this blog tends towards positivity and optimism, even when things are a little grim. If I am being frank, that is why I write more about FFXIV or in-development content in WoW these days – FFXIV remains a genuine delight for me to play, while WoW’s in-development content hasn’t had a chance to disappoint me yet. To be fair, I like elements of BfA and I am optimistic that 9.0 will be a good expansion!
- What excites you most about having a blog?
My excitement here is a mix of things. I really enjoy seeing people reading and sincerely engaging with my thoughts and feelings on these games. I enjoy sharing and being a catalyst of sorts for people to enjoy their game time a bit more or to share and discuss what I enjoyed and have that reflect vicariously to others.
This last one makes me a petty shit and I know it, but for years before writing here, I was part of a YouTube channel and podcast with some friends. It was creatively stifling, as they would constantly interrupt and talk over me, shut down my jokes or refuse to engage, and they had a clear vision of what they wanted (which, mostly, was ripping off the Super Best Friends Play channel format) which wasn’t particularly inspiring. I enjoy seeing my daily hits here exceed the views their channel still gets (and got when I was on it too) by a factor of 10-20x, although lately it has been more like 30-50x in my favor. It feels vindicating, in a way, that my vision of what I wanted to share has been a hit and that in a way, they were wrong to be so rude and dismissive of my contributions.
It also makes it double-rewarding to see that my metrics have been on a consistent, steady upward climb. (For context, my first year in 2017, from February on, was 2,566 views. 2018 was 4,379, and 2019 to-date has been 6,335. They’re rookie numbers, I know, but I’m quite proud of that steady, substantial growth!)
- If you could make one thing from a book, TV show or movie real, and in your possession, what would it be?
Easiest answer I can think of is the machine that makes Steve Urkel super smooth in Family Matters. Not because I feel like I need it fully, but because a boost in self-confidence every now and then could be nice on-demand! Plus, it looks like a port-a-potty, which is amusing.
- They say everyone has at least one book in them – if you were to write a book, what would it be about?
I did that already! I wrote and self-published after a successful Kickstarter campaign. However, while it is still available in eBook form on Amazon, I don’t often talk about it anymore or link it. The book is a weird, alternate-universe retelling of the events from my breakup with my ex-fiancee up until my first world trip. Included in that are “what-if” scenarios, me writing about my almost-suicide (including a fake eulogy!) and an odd alternate scene that was a Kickstarter bonus a stranger in Texas paid me $75 for as a part of the campaign. It wasn’t a massively great piece of writing – I don’t dislike it, but the process of how it came to be and the emotional toll of the creative process behind it really sucked and so it is one of those things I allow to linger online but remains left behind. If you’d like to read more about that story, I wrote a longer piece about it on a personal blog here.
That wraps up my seven answers! I’m not really sure who I would tag, so I will take the easy out and not do that, but thank you to Naithin for the prompt and a chance to write something a little bit different here!