Friday, October 1, 2010

Timeout

My blog is not a job.

I’m not paid to do it. I do it for pleasure and enjoyment, since it combines my passion for writing interest for WoW in such a nice way. And on the top of that, there's this lovely community of bloggers and blog readers that comes with it. All those discussions bring me new perspectives, ideas and views that I wouldn't have thought of otherwise. Some of the people I've met here at the inn have even turned into friends, which was nothing I expected when I started back in time.

And suddenly I realize that this sounds more and more like a farewell post. Which it isn't. But yeah, recently the thought has crossed my mind that I might be approaching the end of The Pink Pigtail Inn. I'm not quite sure yet and that's why I've put this header. I'm thinking it over. That's what I'm doing.

Stretched
I want to figure out if what I'm sensing is only the general pre-Cataclysm blues, a little dip in my mood that can be cured with a little break or so, or if it's actually time to turn my gaze to something different.

All I can say is that I've seen some signs lately. To quote Bilbo: "I feel thin...sort of stretched, like butter spread over too much bread."

I've always claimed that you should develop a thick skin if you want to blog. You need it. You will get comments and people will have views about you and all of it won't be nice. But recently I've found it harder and harder to follow my own advice. It feels as if my skin is getting thinner rather than thicker. Even if I don't want to care I do, and sometimes I take something that the writer thought was a fair point as a personal attack on me. I should know better. And that's why I think it's time for me to stop for a moment and think over what I'm doing.

Is it really worth it? Does it take more than it gives me? And do I really want to spend such a huge part of my free time on WoW, not only playing it, but constantly reading about it, thinking about it, writing about it? Isn't it about time that I get a better balance in my life? If I'm honest with myself, I don't spend as much time training, reading and walking in the forrest (the real one, not Felwood), as I used to before I started blogging. And that's something I'd like to change.

Who knows what I could do if I directed my creative energy in another direction? In those years I’ve written over 600 blogposts about WoW. The amount of text is probably equivalent to a couple of novels, especially if you include all the replies to the almost 10 000 comments. I don’t mean it’s been a waste of time and effort. But looking forward I might want to something else with my writing.

I'm positive that WoW can be a part of my life in the future without taking over. It's just that I'm not so sure there's room for WoW blogging in the way I've been doing it so far.

On the other hand I can't help asking myself: will WoW be as fun and enjoyable if I don't blog about it? It's been an essential part of my gameplay for more than 2.5 years. The fact that I blog has changed the game to me. I think it helps me to see things I might not have noticed otherwise. It gives me an incentive for reflection and observation. And if I'm ever in doubt about anything - the game, my guild, myself, I have the entire blogging community to discuss with. The PPI has been my hideaway, my lookout and my outlet for so long. I can't even imagine how it would be to play WoW without it.

Making up my mind
My blog was always a day-to-day project. I've also given my promise to my guests that I won't just disappear without telling you or giving any previous warning. Some of you have been here ever since the start, when there were 20 people hanging out here rather than 1 700. I owe it to you.

That's why I share what's in my mind right now, so it won't come as a complete surprise if I quit. Mind you, I haven't made up my mind yet. So please - if you want to comment on this, save your potential farewell comments to The Real Farewell post. Don't waste them here. When it's settled there will be no doubt about it. As it is now, nothing is set in stone.

However I'll definitely take a break from blogging for at least a week. After that I'll see how I feel about it.

I've got some unfinished work. Psychochild I know I promised you a post about how LOTRO looks through the eyes of a WoW player who tries it for the first time. It's a shame I haven't done it yet, but I can assure you that if I wrote it, it would be a positive review. I doubt it will replace WoW to me, but it's pretty, the Shire makes me relax, it's free from trolls as far as I can see and it's somehow refreshing to see a game that takes itself and the world a tad more seriously, not cramped with real life pop culture references. However I doubt that there's room for more than one MMO project in my life.

Maybe I'll write that post after all. Maybe I'll write many more posts, only not as often. The pub could open be open just one night a week - or less. On the other hand, taking things in moderation has never been my natural pace. I tend to want to have "all or nothing". So perhaps my next post will be my goodbye, the post where I wrap it all up and close the door for good.

I just don't know yet. The question is open and I need some space to think it over. That's all I can say for now being.

Even writing about this doesn't feel easy. It brings tears into my eyes. Which probably is yet another sign that it's time to turn over the ring to someone else.

I love this virtual pub to pieces. I love all of you who come here. And I love to stand here, serving, shouting, crying, talking, listening, arguing, giggling, whispering and ranting my heart out about whatever comes to my mind. It's just that sometimes love isn't enough to fix it.

Don't worry. In the end I think I'll be fine. I just need this little private chat wtih myself to sort those things out in my head and my heart. In the meantime: have another pint! It's all on the house tonight and for the nextcoming weeks.

Cheers!

Larísa

PS This post wasn't quite finished yet when it accidentally was published for a couple of minutes a few days ago, with the result that my first draft turned up in some feedreaders. I tried to put it back into the box again, without any success. Because of this I received several worried letters from readers asking about my whereabouts. And to all of you, I want to say that I'm really touched by your concerns and that I'm so sorry if I've kept you hanging during the week. It wasn't my intention. I just wanted to get a couple of almost-done-posts out of my system before taking my timeout. Hence the delay.

53 comments:

Klepsacovic said...

Hugs. Now go forth and do whatever you feel like!

Sephrenia said...

As one of those who worriedly wrote to you I'd like to add it publicly - take care, relax and enjoy. Blogging should not be a chore - it's for you and by you and you don't owe anyone anything.

Take care, come back or don't, eat chocolate, drink wine and chill :)

I'll keep you in my reader for ever and should you decide to post again I will read what you write. If you never return I will miss you, but think what a wonderful time you must be having!

Ratshag said...

Is never a bad time fer ta take a little break. Hoping is a good and staisfying one, whatevers that turns out ta mean.

Shintar said...

Poor Larísa, I'm not at all surprised to see this post. Your usually cheerful mood has clearly suffered a little as of late, and after I spotted a couple of particularly nasty comments on your blog in the past week, I pretty much expected something like this to happen.

I hope you enjoy your break and that it will make you feel better. I'd be sad if the Pink Pigtail Inn closed down, even if I understand your reasons, but for now I'll simply hope that you'll feel refreshed after a bit of a timeout. Especially as I know what you mean about blogging changing your view of the game; I can't imagine playing without the emotional outlet and discussion that blogging provides anymore.

Nils said...

Perhaps it helps you if I tell about myself. I have never been able to blog on a regular basis. I tried a few times, because the most important factor in attracting a large number of readers is that you blog daily.

But when I tried to do it, I burned out within a week or less. So I eventually decided to just don't crae about daily blogging and just do it if I feel like it. And I very rarely feel like it, unless .. unless:

Unless I read some dumb post by some other blogger. Nothing makes me want to write hundreds of lines as much as seeing stupid PoV spread ;). Yeah .. but I am not the only strange blogger around, am I ?

:)

Tesh said...

I've had leanings toward writing novels lately, m'self. Seems like it might be more productive sometimes, and more fun.

It's funny... every time (and it's been a few dozen) I feel like quitting, in relatively short order I think of a few new ideas to write about.

...that said, I've been planning exit strategies for a while. There's a time for everything, after all.

Markco said...

The reason most bloggers quit is because they are no longer challenged. When you are challenged then the work of writing feels like a fun activity rather than a job or that spread out feeling where you are overwhelmed.

Perhaps you should try taking on the challenge of monetizing your blog? Maybe you should start a new blog with a similar focus to your current with MMORPG's as a general focus?

Good luck to whatever you decide.

antoxa said...

So many quit posts lately. The noted ones.
For some reason i feel ike you're next room to me...
/hug

Gronthe said...

I dare say, no matter what you do you'll always be on my blogroll. I haven't even come close to reading everything you wrote, but one day I will.

I wish you well on your break, may thoughts flow freely, motives be discovered, peace of mind attained, and many an ale be enjoyed by the fireside. No matter what you do, you know there's an army of supporters out here. Peace!

Colie said...

I enjoyed reading your posts, you will be missed :)

Campitor said...

Larisa,

Almost all writers and creative artist (Cartoonist, script writers, etc.) go through a crisis where the writing doesn't seem fun anymore. I think part of the reason is the sheer volume they try to put out. Writing is a passion that can be drowned if overdone. It's a very fine line. Too little and you peeter out - too much and you burn out. Its like that favorite song that you hear over and over on the radio - you get sick of it and just turn the station when it comes on. But after a while of not hearing it, it comes on the radio again and you blast the music while singing along.

Maybe you should limit your PP post to 3x a week? And limit your responses to only a few post and try not to tackle it all. If you find yourself trying hard not to limit yourself then you got the writing bug addiction and you will certainly burn yourself out. And go ahead and induldge yourself. I would love to hear about LOTR and how it compares to WoW - it could be very fun and open new avenues of writing interests.

And try not to take things so personal - in the long run good writing, regardless the opinion, stands the test of time.

Anonymous said...

Forget the haters/whiners/personal attackers.

To paraphrase something an older and infinitely wiser man once said - you don't go to the park and put your picnic down next to the only pile of dog sh*t there.

People blog because they have passionate personal opinions about something, and more importantly, that they enjoy sharing that w/ the rest of the Internet. Bloggers should not feel guilty about sharing. Opinions bring color to the world.

Enjoy your break. WoW isn't going anywhere. Perhaps try out a few other PC games out there and take your mind off the gnome mage for a while.

gnomeaggedon.net said...

Hello...

Ohhh... Goodbye...

Ummm come again soon?

I loved writing 1.5 posts a day for a long time, then other things got in the way and now I happy write when bitten... which maybe nothing for a week, then 3 posts in one day.

If you aren't loving it, leave it till it begs that you come back. Until then, I will be crashed under the bar stool as always.

nowiamtree said...

A break is always good. So often we don't know what we miss until we're missing it!

Right now, we're in strange in-between times, the blogosphere's filled with speculation, nostalgia and yearning. It's a good time to have a breather, a good time to walk in forest, to stretch and reach for that book.

Personally, I hope you return to this lovely place. But whatever you do decide to do, I'd like to say thank you for all the time you've put in to thewonderful, beautiful Inn this far. Your posts have always made me think, and more than one have inspired me.

*raises a glass* Here's to your future whatever it may be!

Talarian said...

Take some time to yourself. Seriously, you're totally correct when you say that your blog isn't your job. People take breaks from their hobbies all the time.

We all came back after your three week vacation, and I know that I'll still get excited to read what your thoughts are the next time you put them down on the internet, so relax and enjoy yourself and your time! If we see the lights on in the Inn later on, we'll stop by for a friendly pint!

Keeva said...

Breaks are very important. Relax, do whatever you want.

We love you <3

Brian 'Psychochild' Green said...

Let me be the selfish bastard that says what nobody else will say:

NOOOOO! Don't go! We'll miss you too much. *weep*

...not that anyone ever listens to me. :P Oh, fine, go do what makes you happy. Just don't be afraid to come back and pour us some drinks again in the future. Just make sure to change out the kegs before you do. ;)

Azryu said...

"Who knows what I could do if I directed my creative energy in another direction?"

Larisa, the inn should never hold you back, and I doubt anyone here would like you to feel confined to the shackles of your former self.

As you change, the inn should change with you, in perfect sync. The Larisa that built this Inn some two years ago is not the Larisa that we know today. You are the Larisa of now: the Kingslayer; the Merrymaker; and yes, caretaker of this fine establishment, the keeper of the inn. You cannot shackle yourself and your writing to the identity you have created thus far.

If your heart skips beats writing about your adventures into the forest, do so. If discovering new recipes or taking still photography conjures even the tiniest bit of happiness, go for it. If your mind says enough is enough, just set yourself free.

The stories passed by the barsides may be important, yes, but I there comes a point where we are not regulars for the spectacular information we gain. At a point, I think we come for the people, the community, the relatability.

All things must come to an end, but I think it's all of our hope that this is not the last chapter of the PPI. As long as the hearth remains warm and the ale's still cold, I don't think anyone here will mind hearing of your new adventures as a writer and person.

spinksville said...

*vibes* I'll miss you a lot, and enjoy your break.

Gevlon said...

The cardinal question is: why do you play? What do you want to do with WoW in your real life?

We Fly Spitfires said...

I've felt the same way before as you are feeling now Larisa, certainly in the regard that I might be getting in too deep with the genre and can no longer enjoy the simple pleasures of a game for the sake of over-analysising it or contemplating other blogger's opinions. It's like you get wrapped up in it all and it just suffocates you.

Taking a step back when that happens is always a very good idea so I wish you all the best. I love your blog but, like you said, blogging's not a job and one has to do what they want with their life. Come back, or don't. Change your blog or keep it the same. It's all your choice and no decent person will ever think anything but the absolute best of you.

timefortincan said...

I love reading your blog - but you're right, it isn't a job. You are not under a duty to do anything.

I suspect that when Cataclysm is released, you will want to play it, and part of playing the game is talking about it - sharing it - and that your interest in the PPI will be renewed.

But if you have come to that stage where you honestly weigh up the hours playing and the hours blogging and they don't balance in the scales of your personal life, then do what is best for you, your family, and your real life. Have no regrets.

Syl said...

Like with playing wow or raiding, if it feels like a job it's time to take a break and give yourself time to consider. i've been down that road with the game and feel that when i come back, i might be able to approach the game in a new way i never knew before - i could imagine it's the same with blogging.

you've been a very consistent and busy wow blogger, so maybe all you need is a break. maybe after that you'll come back to a new approach to your blog, a more carefree and less regular one that is enjoyable in a new way, who knows.
natural progression is a part of all things in life.

or you go and publish a bestseller, not a bad thing either! ;)

enjoy your time off and trust your own feelings! All the best.

Utakata said...

*From one pink pig-tailed Gnome to another.*

...perhaps I suggest a compromise: Don't blog as often. If it's the source of your stress...then take extended breaks. Blog once or twice a week only. You don't need to do it everyday.

...also, there will always be trolls and disagree'ables with axes to grind. Don't take them personally. And don't let them get to you and/or get you down. Infact your strength comes in continu'ing to blog inspite them.

I say this all, because I would miss you if you stopped blogging. We need more pig-tailed Gnomes in the world to speak their minds. It's ugly out there...and we need small bright spots to shine a light in our ugly haunted world. Just saying... :)

Larísa said...

@Klepsacovic: Hugs back! (which is what I currently want to do!)

@Sephrenia: It's not like it is a chore but it takes too much time compared to other things. And yes I suppose I'm a little bit tired and could need a rest. I'll see how I'll feel after a week of non-blogging when I'm not on vacation. Maybe you'll find me climbing on the walls.

Regardless of my decision I will definitely blog at least one more time. I won't leave the inn without a decent farewell post. If it will come to that. We'll see.

@Ratshag: Yeah, it's probably about time that I have this break. Going on for years without it can't be healthy.

@Shintar: Yes, I too find it hard to imagine what it would be like to play without blogging. What if the game loses its luster to me? I hope not.

@Nils: Well you've certainly made yourself a name anyway as the most active of all commenters of Tobold I'd dare say. Hm... that could be a solution? Stop updating my own blog but hanging out at Tobold's? ;)

@Tesh: Exit strategies, you said it... I wonder if my decision to start with a break more is a way of postponing the inevitable? Is it more about me being a coward? Hello procrastination!

@Markco: No, I don't think monetizing my blog would help a bit too be honest. It would rather be the opposite. Then if at any time I'd feel pressured and I'd probably start to spend even more time on blogging, when what I want to and need to is to spend less time on it...
But thanks for trying to help me out!

@Antoxa: Next room? Where are you hiding? Come here... sit down in the bar! There's room for you here as well!

@Gronthe: Peace Gronthe! I still can keep up with all your writing and I will keep reading you even if I might try stay away from even blog reading during my timeout. But you'll remain on my roll and the knowledge that you're waiting for me here by the fireside somehow comforts me in this situation.

@Colie: well I haven't closed yet.

@Campitor: I've been given that advice from some readers over mail, to not answer to all comments, and I think it's a good advice considering the volume I've been answering over the last year. It just gets overwhelming. If I'd keep blogging, limiting myself, I think it's more about heading for one post a week then three.

@Anonymous: Thank you. I don't think it's WoW I need a break from, just blogging. But time will show.

@Gnomeaggedon: What would this bar be without the crashed gnome? I'm counting on you!

@Nowiamtree: Thank you! Cheers!

Larísa said...

@Talarian: Thanks! You'll be most welcome when I light up the fire again.

@Keeva: <3

@Psychochild: Thank you! I was waiting for that and I'm glad SOMEONE said it! :)
The thing is that staying away from the inn doesn't make me happy automatically. It's really with mixed feelings that I take this break. But I think I need to.

@Azryu: To be honest I don't think I'll ever turn PPI into a personal blog. Actually I don't feel any desire to blog about my real life. I think it would be a different kind of writing that I ventured into. I'm not entirely sure yet if the inn is holding me back or if it still makes me go forward (which it no doubt has until now). That's one of the things I'll try to figure out during my timeout.

@Spinksville: And I'll miss you. You're like my next door bar... we're so close that we overhear the conversations all night long from each other. It feels so strange not to be standing there next to Spinks. :(

@Gevlon: That's a tricky question but yes, it's well worth asking ourselves once in a while. I definitely don't play - or blog - in order to spread any kind of ideas across the world. There's nothing I'm trying to "achieve" by playing. I think it's a combination of escapism and entertainment, with a social dimension in it. It's not something I'm proud to say, but I'm pretty crap at getting and maintaining friendships in real life. WoW provides me a way of socializing that works for me, where I can keep people at a convenient distance and yet somehow "belong". Yes, yes, yes Gevlon, I know it and you've always know it - I'm partly one of those pityful "socials" you love to bash on. In some aspects...

@We Fly Spitfires: I guess it would be rather strange if we never ever questioned our blogging, especially considering the time at least I have put into it. It adds up to crazy amounts of hours. And for what? For me it's like building sand castles. I enjoy it in the moment, even if I know that it won't affect the world in anyway whatsoever. But can I really justify using all of my creativity and efforts and free time just for this? Isn't there more to life, more that I could do if I let go of at least a little bit of the ambition level?

Very casual bloggers, who write a post every second week at the most, needn't worry. But we who do should probably do good to ask ourselves those questions once in a while.

@Timefortincan: When Cataclysm hits I'll honestly want to spend as much of my available free time as possible on leveling and enjoy playing it. So it's not necessarily so that I'll find it easier to find time to blog about it - possibly the opposite. On the other hand you're right that it's in the nature of a blogger to want to share. All the time. We just can't shut up, can we? So maybe I'll find it hard to stop or cut down even if I try to.

@Syl: hehe I don't think I have bestseller potential tbh. But sometimes I can regret that I gave up on creative writing so early in my life as I set for the course of journalism. How would I know what I'm capable of if I won't even try?

@Utakata: Dear pink pigtailed Gnome! You speak wisely. And it's true that there are too few pink pigtailed gnomes out there. If you ever wondered about the purpose of the PPI, maybe it's as simple as that? To spread the word. Or rather the hair style.

Dwism said...

Here is the deal, you are only allowed to stay away until you feel that hunger to write and contribute again.
Then you wait a week. Then you return.

Enjoy getting that hunger back! The bar will be fine, i have a keg set up!

Fitz said...

Larisa,

As you will have noticed in your own feedreader, I also started quickly and burned out or had competing interests (a 2 year old, life as an attorney, and other writing interests) that made it impossible to put out good content more than once a week. So while it will be sad to see you cut back, I urge you to give that a try as it has worked for some of us, even if there's less people in the inn when you are there. We can always share a pint over this bar.

Redbeard said...

I'll also suggest cutting back on the posting frequency; it's all about expectations. You should be the one to set them.

Stabs said...

Take care and find the fun.

Hope to see you back when the desire strikes you again as I'm sure it will. You're too good a writer not to want to exercise your talent.

xx

Zahraah said...

I wonder if everyone's melancholy is feeding each other a little, go find that spark of passion again, and bring it back when your ready.

Lume said...

I always open this article and read the responses to have a laugh whenever I get a response I didn't expect.

http://www.lumethemad.com/2008/10/26/the-zombie-part-of-the-wrath-event-is-flawed/

Just take it all in stride. Come back from your break and take comfort in your reasoning.

Anonymous said...

Is it really worth it? Does it take more than it gives me? And do I really want to spend such a huge part of my free time on WoW, not only playing it, but constantly reading about it, thinking about it, writing about it? Isn't it about time that I get a better balance in my life? If I'm honest with myself, I don't spend as much time training, reading and walking in the forrest (the real one, not Felwood), as I used to before I started blogging. And that's something I'd like to change.

This is the quintessence of your post, and something I can wholeheartedly relate to. This is how I quit WoW about 6 months ago.

I am the same age as you. I started playing WoW in late TBC, was in a great guild, downing bosses, getting epics, chasing tricky-to-get achievements, collecting rare mounts, pets and recipes, yadda yadda. At one moment it just started feeling like I have to actively look for something to keep myself in the game, as most sources of fun have depleted. I tried alting, switching roles, changing my play schedule... nothing helped for long. Then I asked myself: Why? Why do I have to convince myself to play? Do I really not have anything better to do? I looked around and saw tons of stuff that I could have been doing for my family, my business, my friends and for myself. That day I quit WoW.

I don't mean to sound partonizing, but WoW is a very addictive game, and one really has to step back from that addiction in order to think clearly and see things for what they are. I know when I was playing WoW, my vision of reality was severely distorted, I was unconsciously looking for excuses not to do this or that and to play WoW more. It took months for me to get back on track after I quit. In the end, I am glad I quit sooner rather than later.

This might not be what is happening in your case (if you already made a mental remark to that effect, that's a bad sign, though), but if you are even the least bit unsure:

Step back from WoW and gaming. Don't play anything for a month or two (old people like us change slowly), and definitely don't touch this blog. Instead, identify an area of your life you'd like to see improved, eg, money, education, health, and work on that area. You might be surprised at what this will do to your perspective.

Larísa said...

@Dwism: I hear what you say and I’ll try to resist the urge to write. Even if hunger will appear it might be a good idea to stay away anyway. For other reasons. Like real life.

@Fitz: While I don’t have any 2 year old, we probably have similarities in our life situations. And yeah, cutting down could be an alternative. If the inn will be more quiet and end up in the very suburbs of the Blogosphere, so what? You and a bunch of other people would still be there.

@Redbeard: I’ve always put the bar high for myself in everything I do. Which is an asset but also a burden.

@Stabs: Thanks. I hope to see you too. In some way.

@Zaraah: Well if I find the spark I think I have to hold back a bit anyway. Not quite sure if I can manage that. We’ll see how it turns out.

@Lume: Hehe, the fury! Isn’t it amazing how deep we can go into this… about a non life-threatening issue… Yes, it’s important to keep the perspectives.

@Anonymous: are you sure that my remark is a bad sign? Wouldn’t it rather be the opposite – that I’m not blinded, that I’m still able to distinguish when something needs to be done and that have to look over my priorities? I’d say complete denial would be a worse sign.

At this point I’m not ready to ditch the entire WoW gaming. I still carry a hope that I might find the balance if I cut down on the blogging. I’d dare say I spend more time reading, writing and commenting in the blogosphere than I do playing WoW. So taking that part away would mean a huge improvement. On the other hand… the result MIGHT be that I lose interest in the game. I don’t know that now, but I wouldn’t rule it out.

Thank you for your concern though and I appreciate your input. There’s a lot to think over for me and by having this timeout I’m giving myself room for it.

I’ve already done a couple of improvements this autumn, picking up a new hobby (medieval dancing) and starting to exercise on a more regular basis. I hope to take more steps in the months to come and I hope it’s doable without cancelling my subscription. We’ll see how it turns out.

Rebecca said...

Wow. I'm at once sorry to hear this and glad that you've taken the decision - take care, and whatever you decide to do I hope the decision makes you happy.

PS: You write so well. Whether or not you decide to return to blogging, in my opinion you should look to doing something with that skill before too long =)

SpiritusRex said...

Larisa:

I have been sitting here trying to compose a comment that sums up how much I've appreciated your insights and looked forward to reading your blog daily over this last year, but find that I lack the words to adequately do so. If nothing else, please know that whatever you decide to do, you will always have the support of this guest.

As you decide about your future as Innkeeper, I hope you will allow me to share with you my favorite quote of all time and know that I offer it to you as friendly support:

”This above all: to thine ownself be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.” (Shakespeare-Hamlet)

Your friend and guest,
Scott a/k/a SpiritusRex

Barrista said...

I think running a blog for the length of time you have is amazing in some respects. I had one for a year, but dumped it when I realized it required almost as much involvement as the game itself.

In any case, enjoy your time away. At some point you may find you have something you feel you must share.

Tobold said...

I suddenly feel a strong urge to ride off with Larísa into the sunset.

Larísa said...

@Rebecca: thank you. I don't know if you're aware of it, but I do have a background as a professional journalist. However... I don't know how to put this... The kind of writing I've been doing in my job for so many years is designed to be efficient, polished, not even noticable. It's a little bit... soulless. And in that process, while I was turned into that writing machine, my own voice and creativity sort of died. Blogging has helped me to hear the voice again - at least I think so. It's a little bit strange since I'm not blogging in my own language, but maybe that's what I needed, to get a new perspective on the writing and get away from the pro-approach.

So what I'm pondering over is more if I want to do... amateur stuff with my creative writing. But maybe in another direction or another level than my English WoW blog can offer.

@Scott/SpiritusRex: oh, I feel the same about you. I'm so used to have you there hanging on your reserved seat, chatting to you in the comment section almost every day and I'll miss you during my absense, regardless of if it ends up to be a short one or if it will be for good. I miss you already this very moment!

I'm glad that you understand.

Thanks for the Shakespear quote! He new his stuff that guy. I'm not the kind of person who learns quotes by heart, but I think I should give this one a go.

@Barrista: tbh I think my blog takes more of my time and effort than the game. You have to be a little insane to go on as I have, I think.

@Tobold: From a egotistical point of view I'd love to have you by my side. We've had a lot of great conversations and I'd hate to put an end to it. It feels as if we have a lot more to discuss before we're done. Or rather: I doubt we'll ever be. Because bloggers just can't shut up, right?

Copra said...

First of all, it's your blog and you don't owe anything to your readers, really.

Secondly, it's your choice to spend your time as you like it. Mind you, too, that I have stated you time and again to take a break, see what's on the other side of the reality window and so on.

Thirdly: consider making the blog not a chore but a channel to your thoughts. Cut the daily part off of your vocabulary: sure it won't make your visitor count rise, but it won't make it soar either.

I have a regular irregular schedule, and despite of that my reader count keeps rising. I don't know why, but it does.

And I feel good about it. Better than when I couldn't get myself to write any coherrent post for days because I felt obliged to do so.

C out

Syrien said...

Thank you for all the great stuff you have posted (so far?)! I've really appreciated being able to lurk in your bar.

If you do decide to quit, I very much hope you do so able to remember how great this blog has been :) The first time I went through a "guild break up" I was very puzzled, in a "but we were friends. Wasn't it real?" sort of way. After realizing that it was real, yet it ended, I've found that I bring back to real life and my internet life a better appreciation of things that are good here and now. So I hope you will keep the feeling that PPI is a major achievement both writing-wise and in a more social sense (even if you didn't do it to "achieve" anything). You are older and wiser than I, so I am probably telling you things you already know :)

The part in your post where I mostly "feel your pain" is not about games but about the soullessness of journalism. You come across as a dedicated professional who's good at what she does, but has a memory of wanting to do even more, or something slightly different. I don't know if this is true or if I am reading some of my own experiences into what you write. But if it should be true, I hope your work with PPI has proved to yourself that no matter how streamlined your work situtation may make your writing, you are still a very creative soul. Sometimes fantasy (be it games or other genres) reminds us of the possibility of dreaming dreams our "RL-selves" thought we had grown up from. Or, to add a quote to the quote-pool:

"Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten." (GK Chesterton)

Void said...

You're a great blogger and I hope you decide to keep posting. Changing to a whenever you feel like it posting schedule can make a world of difference. I've tried blogging every day before and I just couldn't do it on top of the rest of my life.

Whatever you decide to do enjoy the extra time you get and know that your contributions to the blogging community haven't gone unnoticed.

Llani said...

/hug

Breaks are good. Breaks also help you narrow your focus to what you *really* want to work on, and what you miss the most.

There's nothing wrong with only updating once every two weeks or so. I am trying to get on a sort of schedule like that...

Balance takes planning so you are headed in the right direction =) But if blogging is something you enjoy, don't take it out completely.

Enjoy your time away and I hope you find what you seek! =)

Pangoria Fallstar said...

I've been trying find something to say to you that had meaning, especially, since as you put it, this isn't a post with a final decision in it.

I wanted to say the right thing, since for me, you have contributed to my own blog so much. Perhaps, what you need is to either broaden your range on what the Pink Pigtail Inn is about, or you need to change your WoW playstyle.

Its been a while since this post, but I still see you poking your head here and there in blogbay. How has it been not blogging about WoW? Have you been playing it?

I found that leaving WoW was easy. But blogging was important to me. Even Gevlon changed what his blog was about, from gold making to his projects.

In the end, I'd rather keep you with us, even on a blog as you feel schedule (which should always be every blogger's schedule).

Perhaps, you need to explore beyond WoW. I liked your posts about going to the concert. I like your ideas of castles in the sand representing our time in WoW. This blog has been your photo album of sorts.

Perhaps you start a new blog. Leave this here for when you want to talk about WoW, but create a more general purpose blog. There are many options open for you to explore.

So, what I'm trying to say is, that when you come back, please don't make me say goodbye to you.

Frostys said...

I can't get smashed at the brewfest anymore and the inn is closed? What the? ...

/look aroud

Whats that note?

/read note...

Oh...

Hope you are having a good time off. Wish you will comeback cheerfull but in the end, what I really hope it you will find your way and do something that makes you happy.

/leave note on the bar.

"Your next drink is on me."

Vims said...

Can I have your stuff?

Larísa said...

@Copra: If I go back to blogging, which I'm leaning towards to do, it will be far more irregular than it's been until now, that's for sure.

@Syrien: Oh, that was a lovely quote! And thank you for your thoughtful comment. I think you pinpoint very much what this blog has been about and why it's so important to me. Funny enough I had to switch language to rid myself of the streamline, soulless feeling! I don't know what the continuation would be though. Maybe I will pick up writing creatively in Swedish? Am I ready to do that? I haven't done that for so many years, that it's as if I've forgotten how to do it, even though the blogging as been a bit of an awakening. I keep pondering over this.

@Void: thank you. It will take me a change of mindset to start blogging very irregularly and scarce. I'll see if I can bring myself to that or if I'll have to quit after all.

@Llani: /hugs back!

@Pangoria Fallstar: Yes, I've been poking around, commenting here and there and harassing some bloggers with e-mails even.... I don't know if that's "cheating", but my non-blogging week has had a good impact on my life. I've done things I didn't have time to do before. Sleep. Excersise. Seeing people in real life.

So you left WoW but kept blogging. In my case it's more the opposite: I keep playing WoW but try not to think and write about it all the time, hence less - or no - blogging. I'm not sure what is the best call.

Currently I don't feel any urge to start a general real-life blog. I think I need some sort of focus/perspective in my blogging to get some inspiration on what to write about. I enjoy writing stuff that is sort-of out of game but still has a tiny connection. And that was the case both with my sandcastle post and the concert post (I've actually written a couple of concert posts as I can recall.)

Anyway: thanks for dropping by! And as I feel right now I doubt that my next post will be the closure of the inn.

@Frostys: I've got a drink waiting for me when I come back? Don't expect me to forget about that!

@Vims: You can have the trolls and the spam, that's for sure!

Scarybooster said...

Even though I've commented little, I was still reading. Why did I read you?
1. Was I WoW fan? No I don't play WoW anymore
2. Because you visited my blog? No but it was nice if you
3. Because you are an outstanding writer with a heart of gold? Ding Ding Ding!

So many times I have taken time off gaming and blogging. I am not as popular as you, but I never dis it to be popular. I write because I enjoy the stories. It's ok to put the pen down and relax, but soon you will want to pick it up again because it is in your blood. Keep up the great work your you.

Larísa said...

@Scarybooster: That was about the sweetest anyone has said to me. Thank you. I really mean it. And I think you're right about my writing. It's in the blood. Just can't help it. Wait and see.

Gareth Mensah said...

I really like your blog, along with Toblod's it's one of the most engaging and interesting one on video gaming, beyond WoW and also beyond MMO.

I think it'll do you good to take a break, but I'm really hoping you do come back because your voice is much needed in the blogosphere :)

SpiritusRex said...

****Entering the Inn for his usual Friday stay, Spiritus is greeted by the emptiness that confronts him. Although knowing that the Inn would most likely be quiet, he has found that at his age some habits die hard and he has come nonetheless. With his cloak trailing behind him, the gloaming sun causes the swirling dust motes to sparkle about him like the golden glow of a holy nova. Removing his cloak, he heads to his usual seat near the fire and again notes the silence and emptiness. He is overwhelmed at the realization of how hard Larisa had to work to keep the old Inn in such fine shape - it is no wonder she needed a break.

Approaching his seat by the fireplace, he spies a smoldering ember buried deep among the ashes. Removing the ash and adding a log as he stokes the ember, he thinks that the ember is much like the Inn. Although not currently burning brightly, there is still much light and warmth that can be shared.

In the deafening silence, broken only by his quiet breath and the crackling of the returning fire, he sees the faces of his friends in the flickering, virgin flames. Amongst all of the others, it is the memory of the foul orc dribbling mead down the front of his chest while saying something in his characteristic lilt that breaks Spiritus reverie. Shaking his head, Spiritus smiles to himself and reaches into his vest to remove his wineskin. Noting that the casks have not been filled at the Inn this week, Spiritus pours the contents of his flask into a flagon that sits upon a nearby table and grabs several empty glasses. Settling into his chair, Spiritus tries to warm his aging bones by the infant fire. Finding little success, he pours himself a glass of wine and closes his eyes as the warm, godly nectar quenches his soul’s thirst. Listening intently, he begins to hear the faint tapestry of days gone by. As the fire in the pit now begins to emerge in full and finally warm his chilled bones, Spiritus raises his glass in a welcoming toast to the voices of the past as he settles comfortably into his chair to await their various owner’s expected return. A smile of peace suddenly appears on Spiritus’ face as the memories play on for he knows deep in his soul that the Inn may be empty now, but the Innkeeper and guests, like prodigal children to their forgotten parents, will one day return and he will be here, whether in flesh or spirit, to tend to the fire and welcome them again as friends.****

Larísa said...

Suddenly Spiritus hears a noise. Is there someone outside the door?

Hterag said...

I've been reading you for a while now but have not commented very often since your readership does a more than adequate job of covering any discussion that gets started from all viewpoints.

I know that this may sound corny but when I read what you have written I imagine hearing the voice of Galadriel talking to Frodo rather than a Gnome with pink pigtails saying "my... you're a tall one!"

In the end you should do what feels right for you although I would be less than honest if I did not say that I hope you return soon.