Monday, 25 March 2013

Disappearing Act

I know, recycled screenshot is bad. Tough.

I just wanted to pop in briefly and acknowledge that I have not been around for the last little bit. Everything is ok, well it's all getting back to ok. School has been ferocious lately and I fear it will be worse in the coming weeks.

Fear not, my regular nonsense will return, when I get a spare moment (read: Easter Weekend)

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Raiders on Reserve

Could not find a picture from my raiding days... borrowed one of Cy's

This started as a response to Navimie's post "When both sides of the story are right" and sort of took on a life of its own, so rather than clutter up her post with all of my opinions and experiences I decided to move it in here.

 To begin, I want to first let you know where I'm coming from. I am not a raid leader. I am not a guild leader. I am not actively involved in a guild at present. My opinions and experiences are not from a leadership perspective: I have never been a raid leader. I have never actively made these decisions and I do not envy those in a position to implement them. What I am is a former raider in a number of different guilds enough to consider myself fairly well educated on the impact that these types of decisions can have on the average raider and the effect they can have on a guild. My experiences are all from the view of someone who observed the implementation of these guild policies and had little no no say in the decision to implement them in the first place.

Through my raiding years I've run with many different raid leaders and guild groups and it's been my experience that they all have their own way of solving the overcrowding issue. While there is no "right" way to deal with it, there are ways which are "less wrong" than others and ultimately the measure of the solution is whether your raiders feel it is a fair solution and leaves the least amount of hurt feelings.

When you have a fair amount of players sitting standby, but not enough to justify increasing your single 10 man raid to 25 man perhaps the most desirable, or obvious option would be to set up a second raid team. Then you can get everyone currently sitting out raiding and no-one would have to be cut from the guild roster. In a perfect scenario you would then have 20 people all of whom show up regularly, and are participating in the raid content that they want to be in. The problem is that the ideal scenario never works out exactly the way you imagined.

Having been recruited to fill out the secondary teams for several guilds the problem I most often run into is that people consider the casual or second group to be a stepping stone or, for recruits, an interview before getting bumped up to a spot in the primary group. I've always found this problem in progression driven guilds who have two groups that are running progression content in which one group is doing significantly better than the other and as a result, a spot in one group becomes more desirable for progression minded players and breeds discontent among members who feel they deserve to be among the better performing team and ultimately results in a high turnover rate for the second group which causes its performance to suffer further. I feel like there are two ways to avoid this:
  •  Having two raid groups with a sense of loyalty and unity among group members. If you have a secondary group of people who all get along, and want to raid together, perhaps with a healthy dose of competition between the two raid groups - with members trying to do better than the other group, rather than trying to get into the other group. I had one guild in particular where a guild officer and raid member had a change in his schedule so he could no longer run with the guild raid team. So, rather than leave the guild he requested that he be allowed to lead his own raid team that would run at different times so that he could continue to raid. I ran with them for several months and he was an excellent raid leader, who put the due care into recruiting a raid team that would work well together. Each week we had a friendly competition with the original raid group, trying to do better than them and in the end it made our team that much better.
  •  Have two raid groups with two different functions. One raid group is for progression oriented players. One group is for causal raiders. Each group recruits independently for the type of raider they were designed for and the casual group is never used as an audition for the progression centered group.

Clearly, 25 man raiding or splitting into two 10 man groups are not for every guild. Many guilds then need to implement a way to place people on reserve without causing friction between raid members and every guild leader and raid leader has their own way that they sit people out and not all methods are created equal.

It's hard to decide who sits out in a fair manner, and even then it's easy to read into being sat out.  Some of the methods I've experienced are:
  •   Performance based rotation -  Toward the end of Wrath I was recruited into a guild that I had been casually running with. They were frequently short a healer and Cy was part of their main raid group so I was frequently drafted in to help pick up the slack. After several weeks of being called in the guild leader asked me what I thought of joining permanently and after I thought about it for a while, ultimately I joined on full time. We didn't start putting people on reserve until Cataclysm when the original raiders that members like myself had been recruited to replace came back to the game and expected their place in raid was guaranteed. As we entered the Cataclysm raiding scene it became evident that people would have to sit out and the raid leader proposed a rotation. His idea was that the first people to show up to raid get a raid spot and if someone was not performing they would be rotated out and a reserve brought in. I feel like singling people out in raid is not ok, and being rotated out of raid because you're not doing well enough is the ultimate form of that, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.
  •  Favouritism - In Cataclysm I was recruited into another guild that was looking for casual raiders by the guild leader, not the raid leader.  As it turned out there were a number of other priests in the guild with seniority over me and after several successful weeks of raiding some of them started signing up for raids and suddenly I was passed over every week despite being one of the top performers. The reasons why I was always placed on reserve were never formally discussed but it felt like they were choosing old friends over fairness.
  •  Volunteer reserves - I've seen this work really well and really poorly. It is a great way for a regular raider to "take a day off"; however, often the same people continually volunteer to sit out.

What I think is ideal:
  • Scheduled rotation - Everyone who wants to raid gets to raid equally initially, and attendance is rewarded because raid members who show up every week will get to fill in for members not in attendance.

Like I mentioned, every guild has a way that they handle placing raiders on reserve and they work on an individual level - not every method is for every guild. Ultimately the method you employ should be based on the raiders in your guild and what works for you.

TL; DR Dealing with placing raid members on reserve is hard and the method for dealing with it that works is something that each guild needs to deal with on an individual level. Also, I've been in some pretty lame guilds.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Day 11

Day 11 – Bad habits and flaws

I can think of lots of these, so I've narrowed it down to my top 5 bad habits/flaws:

1. Procrastination - Why should I do something now, when I can do it later? I am horrible for putting things off and then rushing to finish them at the last minute, or rationalizing not doing them at all. I tend to do things when I feel like doing them, rather than when I should be doing them hence why I have never been able to stick to a proper exercise regimen because and why I have yet to finish a single reputation that requires dailies.

2. Keyboard movement - I'm primarily a healer. I use clique and grid so that I can "click to heal" and because of that I have trained myself that my mouse hand is for spells which leaves my left hand, the one on my keyboard, for movement. 90% of the time this is not a problem and when it comes down to it if I need to make a quick turn and run away I drop my healing and run away (Sindragosa's Blistering Cold comes to mind). I'm not sure if that on its own makes me a bad player, but it does make me a bad dps because I have had a lot of difficulty breaking my healer habits and learning to use my keyboard and key-bindings for dps and mouse for movement.

3. Defensive - I'm not good at taking criticism. Instead of taking things in stride, I get defensive. There's a right way to give me advice and a wrong way and a thin line in between them. Often, it ends with me walking away from conversations that get too confrontational. Ultimately it's played a part in me abandoning dungeons and quitting raid teams. Sometimes it's not about who's right and who's wrong. With me it's often about knowing when to drop something and letting me learn to do things on my own. For example: I have a "friend" who refuses to accept any opinion other than his own as having even a little bit of merit. This results in him pressing the issue with me when we have differing opinions and with me getting frustrated, and defensive and ultimately walking away from the conversation.

4. Competitive - I love recount. I love it. More than that, I love to have my name at the top. Sometimes this gets in the way of being a responsible, mana managing, good healer.

5. Obsessive compulsive - I like things done a certain way and some trivial little things left out of place bother me. Little things like leaving the bathroom light or a coffee cup on the table bother me. I have a particular way that I fold laundry. In WoW this manifests itself when people break etiquette or do fights in a new different way.

Thursday, 7 March 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Days 9 & 10

I've decided to group these two together because the first only requires a link.

Day 09 – Your first blog post

Here it is : Link

You'll notice that is is from April of last year because that's actually when I made the blog. I did a couple of posts and then lost interest until September, when I decided to stick around.

Day 10 – Blog/Website favourites

 Wow, lots. For a selection of my favourite blogs I would invite you to check out the blogroll to the right. I'm not really going to go into a lot of depth n them because they're all right there.

Blog Azeroth - This is my go to blog resource site. I really like doing the weekly shared topics and it's how I met most of my blog friends.

Warcraft Pets - When I need information on battle pets, I go here first. I'm mostly interested in capturing new pets than in battling pets and they have some really great tools to help me find out which pets I still need and how I get my hands on them.

Ask Mr. Robot - Don't know how to reforge properly? Ask Mr. Robot.

Noxxic - Noxxic provides "class guides" which I find helpful if I'm not sure which talent I might want to take or which gems I need. They also give suggestions on "rotation" or "spell priority" which  I find really helpful when I'm playing a new spec or class.

How to Priest - As a priest resource it's hard to beat How to Priest. I'm not a very active poster, but there is a wealth of information and if I have a priest problem, I go there to solve it.

Wowhead - My favourite WoW Database. Every quest, item, NPC, and more catalogued and waiting for you to search it.

The Daily Squee - Daily dose of cute.

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

He's back...

...and he's got daily quests for you.

That's right, while everyone else is excited and getting into the new daily quest hub and raid content etc. I am excited because in a blast from the past Image of Archmage Vargoth is back as a daily quest giver. Whoo!

Saturday, 2 March 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Day 8

 Day 08 – 10 things we don’t know about you

I just want to say, before you read this, that I've been reconsidering posting it for a while, because some of these feel like confessions and are not things I'm sure I want people to know about me. You have to understand that I am a particularly private person, and it's hard for me to put things out there that are "real" or paint a picture of me as anything but the parts of me I've decided were good enough to share online.

I'm sorry if any of this tarnishes your opinion of me. That was never my intention.

1. I have been playing WoW since September, 2005.

2. I wish Gerard Butler would tweet more because then it would be easier to pseudo-stalk him. Yes, he's old enough to be my father. No, I don't care.

3. I love My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. I will never apologize for this. I get a great many compliments on my Rainbow Dash sweater albeit mostly from people who have no idea who Rainbow Dash is.

4. I love Grumpy Cat.

5. I just don't get children. In fact, they kind of scare me. Not in the "I don't want to hold your baby because I'm afraid I'll break it" kind of way, in the "I don't want to hold your baby because I'm just plain afraid of it" kind of way. I have, at times, used the former as an excuse though. It's easier than explaining the truth because I don't even really understand why it is.

6. Zack Morris was my first crush. When I was 10 I legitimately thought that I would marry him someday.

7. I HATE coconut. I hate everything about it - the smell, the taste, and the texture, especially the texture. Yuck.

8. Through Wrath of the Lich King I was an elitist hardcore progression raider and among the top 15 holy priests on my server. I didn't make the switch to Disc until Icecrown Citadel came out and Disc priests became such a hot commodity I had to try it. I never looked back. Now, I don't raid at all.

9. I have an obscene amount of toys - particularly stuffed animals. I know they are technically for children but I don't care. My favourite is a little pink bear that I have had since I was three years old named Rosie.

10. When I was in University I was mildly anorexic. It was never diagnosed, and I was never hospitalized, but it was there and at my lowest weight I came down to around 90 lbs and could borrow shorts from my nine year old brother. Luckily for me all it took to come back to a healthy weight was a move back home and a mum who constantly pressured me to eat, and helped me learn to enjoy eating again. I have never told anyone this, but sometimes, particularly when I'm sad, I miss it.

Thursday, 28 February 2013

She Must be Insane Part 3

Two months in to my insane quest and I finally have real progress to report.

Starre and I had been planning to do some of the pirate grind together and finally after weeks of trying to meet up we finally set a date and time that we both managed to show up for. Let's just say we both forgot a couple of times.

Anyway, it seems that we picked the perfect night to grind rep because we stumbled on a farming group who invited us to go along with them, and after about two hours I managed to go from Hated with Gadgetzan all the way to Neutral. Without further ado here are this months final numbers:

Booty Bay: Hated 21512/36000
Everlook: Hated 21381/36000
Gadgetzan: Neutral 597/3000
Ratchet: Hated 21381/36000

It finally looks like I'm beginning to make headway with these reputations. I look forward to making it back into the green with Gadgetzan this month. Also: I can finally use their flight point again! YAY!

In other news I also want to let everyone know that Cy and I have each started up Twitch accounts - he streams while he raids (1:30EST Tues - Fri), and I've just started so I don't really have a schedule set up yet. If anyone wants to check those out I'll throw the links up on the side bar and our banners on the bottom of this post.


Wednesday, 27 February 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Day 7

 Day 7 - The reason behind your blogs name

I feel like this is pretty self evident. When I decided I wanted to make a blog I had a lot of difficulty thinking of a name. I started off thinking that I needed something personally significant that said something directly about me and wasn't tied into class necessarily. Eventually, I started looking around WoW itself for inspiration and found  "Holy Nova" while I was rummaging around in my spell book on my priest. I liked the sound of it and while I'm not likely to be a priest strategy/resource blog there is definitely a connection that I have with my priest that I don't have with any of my other characters. Thus, "Holy Nova", a priest blog was born.

Monday, 25 February 2013

I've Got the Bug

If you haven't already seen Mataoka's Mata-oscar movie mog roundup yet, go and check that out. Now. You will not be disappointed - lots of great mog talent and movies being showcased. For my entry click here.

I know, I know, I slapped up that big disclaimer and said that transmog is not my thing. It was true. Was anyway. You see, I didn't count on it being fun and  ever since I made those outfits I've been playing with Mogit. A lot. I really enjoy taking items that were never necessarily meant to be together, but all have similar colours and fashioning them into a new set.

 I've come up with a couple sets my death knight is working on completing now, and I've decided to post them up here. Both are totally usable and are not completely horrific to farm, I'm currently only missing two pieces of this first one.

Shoulders: Goldtalon Spaulders 

Thursday, 21 February 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging Day 6

Day 6 - Your workplace/desk (photo and/or description)

I think this is pretty self explanatory.  Two monitors of varying size - the smaller one is primarily for reference material for whatever game I'm playing and also the one I blog on and the larger primarily for games. I'd also like to mention that the Gorilla stuffed toy is also a screen wipe... so they're not all just because I really like stuffed animals.

What you don't get to see from that angle is that I'm directly beside the loveseat which is this guys absolute favourite hangout.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Day 5

Favourite Item(s) in Game

 It is so hard to pick just one. You see, I'm kind of a WoW hoarder. I love to keep totally useless items because they have a cute name, like my Luffa or because they were useful in the past and they carry some weird personal significance like my Carrot on a Stick, or my Riding Crop. For Context: I used to ride horses. That, and my dad's leather worker made my crop, that makes it more special and even though it no longer has his name on it, I will always know who made it. I have the White Linen Shirt my rogue made while she was a tailor, made special because her name is there. I have  my Widowmaker, Shadowblade, and Hanzo Sword(which I never even really used) all of which are important because of who gave them to me and while I would have kept these regardless my Raven Lord and Pandaren Monk also fall into that category.

That's why I can only have one favourite item. One favourite otherwise I will go on forever listing off everything in my bank and saying "It's all my favourite. I NEED all of it."  This is not an intervention, so I'm not going to get into defending why all of it is necessary and not junk. Every item has a story, or rather a justification, and I don't want to get into that any more than I already have.

When it comes down to it though, I think my favourite is my Benediction/Anathema. Why? Because, more than any other item this one says "I am a priest". There was a time, when any priest worth her salt carried Bene, but that was before I knew I was a priest. I did not get mine until Wrath, and even then the quest was still challenging. I managed to complete it three times. The first time was on my own, level 80 priest decked out in purples. The next two were on level 60 alts, neither of them my own. It is one of the few items that I get to show constantly to other players.

While all of my personal items are important, there are very few that I get to show off constantly and I feel like the ones that I get to share with other players are the most important.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Oscar Mogs for Matty

Let me preface this with I don't mog. Rather, I don't make my own mog sets. My priest is wearing full tier 6. So, the only thing in her entire outfit that I needed to match was her staff. This is totally new to me, but I could not resist trying my hand at Matty's Oscar mog contest because I love movies.

Ultimately, I ended up choosing The Little Mermaid - one of my all time favourite movies.

Chest - Ebonhold Armor 
Legs - Simple Kilt
Offhand - 34 Pound Redgill

Prince Eric
Chest - Rat Hair Vest 
Legs - Azure Silk Pants 

Chef Louis
Head - Chef's Hat 
Chest - Buccaneer's Vest 
Shirt - Red Linen Shirt
Tabard - Apron
Waist - Thick Ravager Belt 

 In reaching the conclusion I tested about 5 different movies, trying to find the right pieces for characters. One of those was Wreck-it Ralph and I've decided to post this guy up because I would have liked to do that movie; however, I just wasn't happy with any of the other outfits I made for it.

 Fix-it Felix
Head - Arcane Cover
Chest - Royal Blouse
Gloves - Narassin's Gloves

Monday, 11 February 2013


Not on topic, I know, but this is what's on my mind now and I'm feeling kind of like if I don't get it out it's not going to go away.

For those of you who don't know, I live in Atlantic Canada. Over the weekend,  we and much of the northeastern United States got hit my a massive Nor'easter aka Nemo.

Nemo hit my hometown shortly before 10pm on Friday evening, just before I left work for the night. I walk home from work, and it was snowing gently with little to no wind. It made for an altogether pleasant walk home. The mass of the storm was still in Boston, we were merely getting the tip of it. We knew that the worst of the storm would be over when it reached us, we just didn't really know what that meant yet.

In preparation we brought the extra blankets down from our loft, filled up our water jug, and I put my "Lion King" flashlight on the night stand. I wanted to be ready in case we lost power, and as a result, our heat. The cats hunkered down for the night in the bathroom - one on the bathmat and the other in the sink. When I went to sleep at about midnight the worst of the storm still had yet to reach us.

Obligatory cat-in-sink picture. P.S. Check out his Monroe beauty mark.

I remember that as a child I used to wait with giddy anticipation for storms. The worse the blizzard the better. Now, as an adult there is a certain dread that accompanies the snow instead. Questions come up "How am I going to get to work? Is it going to be safe for me to go to work? Are we going to have power/heat/water?" When I went to sleep on Friday night, I didn't know the answer to any of those questions. Not knowing is the worst part.

When I woke up I was relieved to find out our power had stayed on through the night, our heat was still running and despite being without water for a few hours due to a busted water main we had made it through the first half of the storm relatively unscathed. Cy shoveled a trench for me through our alleyway so that I could get out to the street for work and the snow had piled roughly to my knees at that point. Two hours later, when I left to see how bad it was the trench was half filled. At that point nothing had been plowed. My half of the street had drifts piled up to my waist and in some places taller than me. The other half was completely barren and windswept.

I walk to work, and ultimately I decided it was safer for me to stay inside than to risk getting run down by someone foolish enough to drive on un-plowed roads in the middle of a blizzard.

 The best way to break up a wall of text? Add some cats.

I understand, that as an employee, the decision to go to work in inclement weather ultimately lies with me. I made the decision to stay at home, inside because the conditions outside were dangerous. I did it because I care more about my life than I do my job and I think I would have been a fool to make the walk down, especially after my roommate nearly got hit by an out of control driver two blocks down from us.  I do not provide a vital service. If our place of work were to close down for a day because a potentially record-breaking blizzard was bearing down on us, I think that would be ok. Many responsible employers made that decision and either closed their doors early or did not open them at all. The mall that my workplace is attached to closed. So did the liquor store across the street, along with the entire downtown area.

9/10 times I support having the employee make his/her own decision on whether it is work the risk to work through the storm. In this situation, I feel that an employer should recognize the danger in asking their employees to come to work. I feel that many employers did; however, once again my own left me and a lot of other employees feeling undervalued.

Overall, of those affected by Nemo we were by far among the lucky ones. We were safe, and warm in our home and my heart goes out to those more severely affected by it.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Week Made

I was having a rough day. No, that's not true it's been a rough week. Some of the reasons are pretty personal so I'm not going to get into them but suffice to say it hasn't been easy lately.

Then, I woke up and this was in my inbox

A blogger and a healer who
Just wants to be insane.
She also sketches skillfully -
A night elf priest's her main.

I'm glad I got to know her more -
I read her indepth post.
So kind she let me screenshot her
She was an awesome host :)

Thank you Navi. I love it! Week made. How can I be sad when I've a friend like Navi?

Also: I didn't have a screenshot of us together so I improvised. I think that this option was better than my other idea - cutting and pasting her into a photo with me like a weird creepy stalker >.<

Feral druid sketching

Thursday, 31 January 2013

She Must be Insane Part 2

They say the road to hell was paved with good intentions.

I certainly went into this half of the month with the best of intentions and raked up some numbers with a couple of pirate killing sessions.

My momentum didn't last; however, and I ended up laid out in bed, sick, for nearly a week.

As of today, I'm back in business, and hopefully a couple of serious sit downs and I'll make up for the lost time.

Here's the round up
Booty Bay: Hated 5181
Everlook: Hated 5050
Gadgetzan: Hated 9986
Ratchet: Hated5050
Darkmoon Faire: Friendly 4450
Looking forward to getting in those Darkmoon Faire dailies in the upcoming week :)

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Day 4

Day 4 - My best WoW Memory

Well... that is a loaded question.

I feel like I started to answer this with my Thanksgiving post back in November.

If I had to pick one distinct memory it was on the Lakeshire bridge when a level 40 rogue came up to mine, who was sitting on the bench waiting out rez sickness, and asked if I needed some help and maybe a guild.

This is my favourite because it sparked my first, true WoW friendship. It gave me a guild that I will remember forever. One whose name many of my toons still wear even though all of the members have moved on. Honestly, sometimes I feel like I'm still waiting for them to sign back on even though I know they aren't going to. I know that it's beyond time to move on, but now and then it's lovely to look back and think about the people who made my high school years bearable.

Anyway, I'm still horribly sick, so I'm going to pack this in for tonight. Tune in tomorrow for another installment of my journey to the insane.

Monday, 28 January 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Day 3

Quick little update here first. So, I'm still sick and that sucks; however, I now have Supernatural season 5 to keep me company thanks to my roommate, who did not know it's my favourite when he purchased it for me. Also, we had a bake sale for my marketing project and raked in a cool $120 so I'm super pleased with that.

Now, on to question 3. My first day in WoW

I still remember coming home with World of Warcraft. My family had taken a day trip to do some shopping and it was about a two hour drive home. I remember opening the box and reading the manual, thinking about which class I was going to play. I remember my fathers surprise that I had decided to play a rogue and not a hunter. I am a notorious animal lover.

There was anticipation and frustration as I made my account and finally signed in for the first time.

I was hooked from the first hour.

I didn't even make it off Teldrassil, but I did make it to Darnassus where I wandered about for ages, consumed with wonder at just how big Azeroth was. I had no idea that I would still be playing it now but then I was 14 and I didn't have a clue about very much.

Sunday, 27 January 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging - Day 2

Cy got me sick.

I feel awful. I have to finish my bake sale goodies. I have to do our laundry. I have so much stuff to do and only one day off to do all of it and I'm sitting at my computer, blogging because I can't fathom getting up right now.

This sucks.

My everything hurts.

Day 2 - Why I decided to start blogging.

I don't think that there is any one reason why I started blogging. It's more like a culmination lots of smaller factors.

At the time when I started blogging actively WoW had become a really solitary game for me. I had just left my guild because I disagreed with the way our raid was run, and I couldn't stand the thought of being in the same place as our raid leader for one more second. So, I left and joined my fathers alt guild to get some air and make it evident to those in my previous guild that I had moved on because I was too cowardly to tell them why I left. I mean you can't bad mouth the guild leaders girlfriend and get away with it.

So, I was feeling pretty lonely. I've always noticed how tightly knit bloggers tend to be. Regardless of the subject matter bloggers always make friends with other bloggers who write about the same things. I wanted to be part of your community so, I started a blog and hoped that I could stop being an observer and become a participant.

Also, I had some things to say. I'm pretty soft spoken... actually make that I'm really soft spoken. I've never, ever held my own in a fight whether it be with fists or words. I can count on one finger the amount of times I've stood up for myself in game without Cy having to stand up for me. I wanted a forum where I could say what I wanted without having to deal with the players I was angry with and having to read the hateful things they had to say back.

Mix those in with the fact that I've always wanted to have a blog that I actually stuck to writing for regularly and you end up with me here, 4 months in to writing Holy Nova.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

20 Days of WoW Blogging

Have I mentioned yet, that I was Navispamed? Wait, I did? Oh. Sorry, still coming down from that.

Now,  the real reason why I brought that up was to cleverly segue into why I'm doing the "20 days of WoW blogging." You see, while I was chatting it up with Navimie, she mentioned that she wanted to visit to get to know me a bit better. I've noticed that, as a recurring theme through the segment. Whether they be readers, writers of blogs she reads, or people she admires in general, she visits them all to get a better idea of who they are, as people.

With that in mind, I wanted to find a way to let readers learn a little bit more about me, without having to try and catch me online. So, I've decided to do Spellbound's 20 days of WoW Blogging Challenge. Please, bear in mind that I may not be able to do it 20 days in a row. My schedule is already packed to the brim. I can promise that I will try to do these as expediently as possible.

We start with day 1. Introduce yourself.

Hi, my name is Malkshake, Malk for short. I've been playing WoW since August of 2005. My first character was a rogue, but in late 2007 I decided to change mains and have been priest healing ever since.

I graduated high school in 2008. That's right, I was one of the high school baddies everyone complains about. I took my first year of university toward a BSc, and quit midway through my second year and promptly signed up for pastry school and graduated from the Culinary Institute of Canada in 2010. I'm currently attending college full time in Business Administration and next year I will be specializing in Accounting. Ultimately I'd like to receive my professional designation in a few years and get a cushy job working in the financial sector. In my spare time I like to WoW, write for my blog, and I draw a little too.  At home I have two kitties and a dog who lives with my parents because my dad decided he liked him too much to let him move out with me. To be fair the dog loves my father way more than he ever loved me.

In WoW, I am a level 90 discipline night elf priest. I'm strictly a healer, meaning my secondary spec is holy, and I've been that way since Wrath. I've held multiple positions in a number of hardcore raiding guilds primarily throughout Wrath; however, have taken a more backseat role presently as my schoolwork and job have taken priority. Most of the time these days you'll find me treating WoW as an escape from the real world. In the time that I get to play I'm usually chasing some new mount, pet, or title, most recently the insane. I'll also admit to having been quite the achievement whore in the past. Sometimes, I just like to sit on WoW and write for my blog. I don't know why, but it's always easier to hammer out an article if Hemoglobin is sitting there on the screen.

I have a handful of alts, all of them alliance. The most noteworthy of which are: an 87 resto/enchance shaman, an 87 frost death knight, an 85 resto druid, an 85 assassination/subtlety rogue and a level 80 holy paladin who is currently looking for a Herald of the Titans group both for gearing and ultimately getting the achievement.

I think that is probably enough rambling for now. If you have any questions that aren't likely to be addressed through the 20 days challenge, or if you want to do this with me please drop me a line at my email

Wednesday, 23 January 2013


You'll never guess who caught me online this past Sunday. Navimie, of Daily Frostwolf and Navispam fame.

I should have taken pictures, but I was just so excited that I completely forgot, so for pictures you'll have to head over here and check out her post about the visit. I had a great time getting to chat with her, and for more details check out her post.

Ultimately, I'm just so pleased that she took the time to come out and visit me and more than a little star struck, if I can be honest. And for those of you wondering, yes, it was Navi who gifted me my silkworm.

Wee I got a golden seal :D

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Sunday morning minipost

When your time in Warcraft is a measure of how much rep you can grid, how many pirates you can kill, how much closer you can get to reaching a goal, it can be very lonely. The smallest of gestures, a wave, or a "hey, you are you doing" can resonate and and make you feel like you're not alone.

This little silkworm was sent to me, for reasons other than my rep grind earlier this week. I won't reveal the sender, yet, as I haven't had a chance to ask her directly but she knows who she is. While I sent a mail back, it didn't feel like it was enough. So I wanted to just publicly say thank you thank you <3. He's been a great little buddy trudging through the sands and wiggling when I'm standing around checking mail or twitter.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

She Must Be Insane Part 1

Yay, time for the first installment of my Insane journey.

As the first two weeks of this project draw to a close, I am a little bit disappointed in my lack of progress. I'm laying the blame on my /slightly/ obsessive personality, which I honestly thought was going to help me power through this. Apparently, my brain likes obsessing over things that are more fun than killing pirates in Tanaris.

Things like spirit wolf dancing in Karazhan and playing with tiny toy boats.

Honestly though, I've been reading. Yes, reading. You see I got a Kobo e-reader for Christmas from my parents and I bought a snazzy case for it. This one to be specific - 1984. So, I've been walking around town trying to get people to fall for it, because it looks like I'm reading a book, a classic book. They'll think "Oh my, she's so intelligent/cultured/whatever" when I really have 50 shades loaded on it. I've had a great time so far with it, and fooled a couple of classmates all of whom asked me if I've read the real book (No, it's next on my to-buy list when I have some extra cash)

That being said, I did name some progress on the rep front so here are my current totals

Booty Bay: Hated 2665
Everlook: Hated 2665
Gadgetzan: Hated 5340
Ratchet: Hated 2665
Darkmoon Faire: Friendly 4450

All in all definitely not where I wanted to be at this stage, but progress is progress. I will do better next time :)

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Blog Azeroth Shared Topic: No Favourites

Blog Azeroth proposes a new topic for bloggers to discuss every week. This week is courtesy of Mataoka of Sugar and Blood.

A few weeks ago, I noticed logging onto some characters seemed to be more irksome than others, it dawned on me that there were a few who never, ever seemed to be a chore to play. My question is, (and yes, you need to have more than one character over level 1) which of your characters do you always look forward to “seeing?” But the real question is why? Perhaps think of this from a role playing perspective, that this character has a personality, play style and demeanor that inevitably just works. I’d love to meet them!


Wow, this one was so difficult for me. Not because I can't pick a favourite. That part is easy - priest. Hands down. No contest. She's my highest level character, has the most hours played (hours is less embarrassing than days or weeks), the most raid progress, and before they became account wide the largest collection of mounts, pets and achievements on my account. It's safe to say that everything I do on WoW, I do first on my priest.

It's the second part of this topic that I find hard to put into words. Why? It's hard for me to explain the attachment I feel for this particular character, and where I don't roleplay at all I don't see her as a separate entity apart from myself but rather as a part of myself. Telling you why she is my favourite requires introspection, and it's hard to tell you why I feel such an affinity for this particular character. I'm sure that part of it, probably a big part actually, is class.

I can't remember if I've talked about this here yet, but I have not always been a priest. I spent at least my first year, probably closer to two years now that I think about it in Warcraft, as a rogue.

She's changed many times since I created her, but this is actually my original character currently masquerading as a worgen. I actively viewed myself as having a rogue main up until well into Burning Crusade. I had always been curious about a priest alt, but making the transition to healing from melee dps was a big step for me. It was a step I eventually made, and have never looked back, at least not for long.

Fundamentally, I feel like everyone in WoW has a class that resonates with them the most. If not a class, then at least a role. From playing her, I learned than I am a healer. More than that, I am a priest. While I have many alts, that I enjoy playing, I always come back to my priest. She has become for me something like a pair of well loved, perfectly broken in sneakers - I am most at home in Azeroth when I'm playing her.

While I'm sure that class has a great deal to do with why she is my favourite, I know that's not all there is to this. Part of it, I'm certain, is also in her name. I've gone to great lengths to preserve her original name and even when Cy moved servers I stayed behind. I cannot imagine her having any name other than Hemoglobin. It's irrational, I know but it's important to me.

In short, there is no one reason why this is the toon I idle in Stormwind on - I have characters on more active servers that would entertain me in trade much more than Staghelm does. In fact, I am logged in, idling while I write this. The words come more freely if I'm logged in idling while I write.

I'm not sure how to wrap this up... so here is an unrelated picture I drew in Marketing.

For those unfamilliar with Trogdor the Burninator you can check him out here through this link and if you like the doodle, check out my flikr, link on the right.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013


Yesterday I encountered the chibi maker, via twitter and too fell prey to it. So, if you've got an hour or two to spare I thoroughly recommend clicking this link and playing around with it yourself.

I made a chibi Hemoglobin - it's supposed to be tier 6. I added the wings because I'm atonement spec...

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Insane? She Must Be

Those are lock boxes. Heavy junkboxes to be specific, and the last 85 boxes my rogue will ever pick pocket from LBRS. That's right, I attained exalted status with Ravenholdt last night. I've been working on Ravenholdt for a long time, way longer than I'm willing to admit. Now that I have it, I've decided it's time to seriously work on netting myself the insane title.

 Insane in the Membrane
Bloodsail Buccaneers - Honored
Ravenholdt - Exalted
Everlook - Exalted
Booty Bay - Exalted
Gadgetzan - Exalted
Ratchet - Exalted
Darkmoon Faire - Exalted

So, I'm already a Bloodsail Admiral and I got Ravenholdt last night. I'm moving on to the Cartel now and it's going to be a long, boring journey considering they HATE me and I'm going to over-achieve this bad boy by keeping my bloodsail rep as intact as is humanly possible.

Therein lies the problem. I have a hard time sticking to things like this. Long, boring, tedious grinds are not really my cup of tea.  In the interest of forcing myself to remain committed to putting in the time and effort to net myself the title, I've decided that I'm going to start my first recurring segment, "She Must be Insane" where I will keep all of you up to speed on where I am at in the grind, maybe share some adventures that happen along the way and, if anyone is interested, maybe even host a couple of cross-server grind-a-thons with anyone who wants to join me on my home server of Staghelm.

At this time, I'm still not back in school so I don't have a realistic idea of how frequently I'll be able to run the segment but for right now I feel comfortable setting a bi-monthly posting schedule once on the 15th and once on the 30th of each month. 

I look forward to reporting on my progress from Tanaris. For me, the grind starts tonight.

Current rep
Booty Bay - Hated 87/36000
Everlook - Hated 87/36000
Gadgetzan - Hated 174/36000
Ratchet - 87/36000