Sunday, January 4, 2009

Am I Alone in the Universe? Early Thoughts on Blogging


Ok, I know I'm not alone in the universe, but I'm very new to this blogging thing, and it sometimes feels like it. I've been writing all my life, and love to do it, so providing the raw content for this blog is a breeze. The other areas of blog life, however, mystify me. Today's format is a little strange, but shouldn't be hard to follow.

QUESTION: Are there other achievement-related blogs out there?

WHAT I KNOW SO FAR: I've only recently become aware of the blogs of a few fellow x360a members, and have not yet had time to give them more that a passing glance. I've read all of Birky's, but there's not a whole lot to read there, as he started his blog the same time I started this. I've tried every search I could think of on google to turn up blogs from gamers writing about achievement points, and found virtually nothing. From what little I did find (through Google), I saw blogs that were written for a bit, and quickly fizzled, or where ongoing, but pretty bad. While World of Warcraft players can find thousands of blogs on their hobby, I can find almost none on mine. What the hell? Are the few of us blogging on achievements actually treading new ground? If there are any major achievement blogs out there I missed, let me know... cause when I think achievement blogs, I think of myself and Stallion83's blog (1 Million Gamerscore) and that's pretty much it. I do plan on checking out those other x360a blogs when I have the time.

NOTE: Raptured Reality, listed in my "I read" list, is a great all-around gaming blog, and I recommend checking it out, but I wouldn't consider it an "achievement blog."

QUESTION: How do I advertise this blog an build a readership?

SO FAR: I've done everything I can without being annoying to promote this blog through x360a. A couple times I've dropped links in the forums to posts here people would find interesting, and I have this blogged linked in my x360a forum signature. As a member of the review team, I have a fair amount of exposure there anyway, and "ThrawnOmega" as well as "Nate Gillick" are beginning to show up a little more often in google searches, which is always happy. However, how do I maximize exposure in that community and beyond it? How does one advertise a blog? I have not looked too much into this yet, as providing quality content remains priority #1 (and I would write this blog anyway, even if nobody read it), but it would be nice to continue putting my name out there. Remember, a large following never hurts when you're trying to convince someone that people read what you write (and thus should pay you).

QUESTION: What's the difference between subscribers and followers?

MY UNDERSTANDING: I think subscribers are people who get your feed and read your blog, but may not blog on there own, while followers are other people with blogs?

BLOG NOTES: You may notice I've made a few changes to the blog's format today. I've made myself a Feedburner account and changed the feed for this blog, which is now simply Spread the word to your friends! =P This change should make it easier for people to subscribe, and it allows me to track how many subscribers I have, as well as how many hits this blog gets, and what people are reading. It's a valuable tool for me to see how I'm doing and make an ever-better blog.

MY (Crazy?) GOAL: The total number of readers of this blog (subscribers + followers) equals 100 or greater by the end of 2009. The year is young, and I'm just getting started. Is this number too low? Impossibly high? I know not, but it's the number I picked, so I'm going to shoot for it until it's mine, then set my sights even higher. (95 to go =P)

Here's to my continuous quest to write one of the best achievement (and gaming) blogs on the internet, and writing the best content I can. I thank you all in advance for your support, and any advice you can provide me on how to make this better =)


  1. Damnit. I had a full, long comment typed out full of witty remarks and thought provoking contribution to your dilemma. Then I have to click the the damn back button my my mouse! So heres my half-assed, tired attempt to recreate my original comment.

    I feel as though my blog is not so much a source for knowledge to the public as it is an out lit for me. When I am frustrated with my gaming or just plain bored I can type up a quick post and encourage myself to continue on. I find that goals that are made public are much more easily followed up on. The pressure of your peers gives you more incentive to achieve your goal. So thats me.

    Your blog on the other hand is all that AND more. It provides you a way to display your goals but also is a way to voice your opinion on gaming in general. Since you are a very talented writer this is interesting to read and can even be looked forward to. I have always loved reading reviews by yourself and others who can really write and know what they are doing. Do I have any intent of EVER even considering playing the game Bolt? No. Did I read your review? Yes. Had the review been written by Joe Shmo I would of scrolled to the bottom to check what score he gave it and moved on.

    I guess what I am trying to get at is that you are a very skilled writer and that it is appreciated. But, you can't expect to be famous over night. You have to just keep putting out good posts and letting the world know that you have talent.

    I do however think your blog is very unique. There are very few others (if any) who have an education in writing and write about 'achievement whoring'. It is wonderful to see :D

    Also, when you reach 1,000 followers I'll make sure they all know I was follower #1! Haha =P

  2. Well I am just starting to blog and I am planning on making it a daily thing for me. I know at first it will be largely unread but with continued work and exposure I know it will get out there. I for one think your blogging and writing is excellent and I can't wait to read your blogs everyday. You do a great job and I'm sure you will continue to do so. If you would like to follow my blog I'd appreciate it. Any suggestions would be great :)

  3. Can't be famous over night, but things have been moving in the right direction since August. First winning a GSL, then getting a spot on the review team, then nailing 3 high-profile reviews in quick succession (Dead Space, Fallout, Gears), and now this blog. I'm quite pleased with how things have been going =)

    I appreciate the feedback. Writing is even more fun when you know people read it. =)

  4. I'm pretty new to the whole blog thing too, I half expect absolutely no-one will read it but still hope it will become some sort of an overnight success. I guess im doing it to become more confident at writing.

    It may sound retarded but I find it harder to say something on a forum than speak to a complete stranger. I actually had seen the link to this blog on x360a, so i'm pretty sure others will read it too.

    It is more fun when you know it's being read and while i've forgotten what I was actually trying to say, keep up the good work!

  5. The best way to get readership on your blog is to tie it to your online activity. Put the address in your motto on live and sig it on every forum possible. You will get random curious readers who see it. And on that note I found your blog thanks to me bouncing along a chain of followers and landing on the Birky and then yours.

  6. I found this blog because I started reading Stallion's and the only reason I read his is because he loves obtaining Achievements like I do. Obviously he is a little different in that his score is much higher than yours (or mine) so he is a bit more known just for that, but regardless of his score the fact that he was detailing achievement related stuff is enough for me to read and I'm thankful he does it. When I found this blog, I was thankful that you were doing it as well so naturally I now read your blog regularly. One thing I have noticed is that a lot of the 'Achievement guys' are now writing their own blogs with the guys above me being some of these people. That is great as far as I am concerned as obviously I like to read about Achievements.

    It also brings me to another point though and something you kind of referred to in this very post; my blog isn't an Achievement related one specifically like yours or Stallion's is. Instead it's there for anything I want to discuss (in-depth or otherwise) about gaming, which at times will include Achievements. However, I did consider a couple of months ago to have a secondary blog focusing purely on Achievements and also just the fact that I aim to complete anything I play in the best way possible. I eventually decided against it due to thinking it was more important to form a consistency with RR first, but who knows it may be something I look at again in the future.

    Regardless of the above, I wish you well in finding and keeping an audience that reads and responds to what you write regularly. I know full well how slow it can be to get off the ground (so to speak) so just keep writing the content that you do and the readers will come. Now if only I could heed my own advice. ;)

  7. i got to this blog vis stallions blog u fat fucker

  8. If you don't like the blog, I'm sure you can find better uses of your time than posting rude and pointless comments behind the mask of internet anonimity.