Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Wrestling Blog Is Changing

This post has barely anything to do with Triple H, but here he is anyway
Photo Credit: WWE.com
In the last six-plus years, I have written a whole shitpile of words. I'm going to level with you all; sometimes, the writing of those words has interfered with my day job, with my family, with my overall well-being. I don't get paid for my words. In fact, for everything I've written over the years, for everything I've published, I have received a grand total of $25 for a sponsorship that lasted a month. The writers I have published here and I have done this as a passion project, a labor of love, a force for what I sincerely hope has been social good, and our output has rivaled the likes of some other sites that monetize their content. And if I may brag for a second, I feel like TWB has definitely ran circles around some sites where the writers are paid (or write for free to make money for the admins/editors/auteurs).

The truth is, I have prioritized this site over a lot of other things, but I've done so because I had the will, the inspiration, and the spark to do so. One could call it a lot of things, but it has helped keep me centered. But over the last year, the inspiration, will, spark, passion, whatever you want to call it has been disappearing. I don't know the exact reason. WWE's weekly product turning into a slog probably has something to do with it. But my own life is also changing. I have two kids now. Kids need a lot of attention. A lot. I'm also advancing in my day job to the point where I'm getting more responsibility. I'm not going to disclose salary or anything, but I'm just gonna say my shoot job has paid a lot more bills than TWB has.

So the first two paragraphs totally read like a farewell post, and that's definitely not the case. I'm still a writer. I've always been a writer, even when I didn't have a forum. But I've taken TWB in a direction that has had me writing stuff just to write stuff rather than writing when I had a tangible idea. I started writing news items; I am not a journalist. I latched onto the memes and the short little buzz pieces; I am not a content farmer. Yet, I feel as if TWB has become dominated by news and hashtag-content over the last year.

So I am going to take a step back. I'm not going to be shooting for six-seven posts a day, because that's an artificial limit, right? Besides, some of the best sites on the Web don't update that much. For example, Every Day Should Be Saturday updates maybe four times a day, and it has a bevy of talented writers who carry equal parts of the load. The site's founder, Spencer Hall, doesn't write every day for it; hell, he's passed the lion's share of the writing to Ryan Nanni, who, by the way, is goddamn fantastic. He and his staff have become famous not for quantity, but quality (and corgi pictures, but corgi pictures are quality), and it shows. If you even remotely like college football, you know to go to EDSBS. You aren't going to see a billion posts a month, but what you do see there, you will like (and if you don't, then I might glance at you sideways).

What I want for TWB is for you to come to the site and like what you read because I or my staff have written something worth reading. Now, I'm not throwing my writers under the bus; I really feel the best pieces on this site have come from Butch and Lacy and Scott writing about things they want to write about on a regular basis or the others coming out whenever they can doing their thing. And I feel like some pieces I've written have had that spark. But I found myself writing that "Get Them Off the Bench" piece earlier today, and after I saw it publish, I got disgusted with myself. Is this the fucking state of affairs that I'm reduced to pumping out three-paragraph snippets with barely any exposition stating something I've written about several times in the past with more sophistication? That's not me. That's below what I feel my personal standards are.

So if most of the stuff on TWB comes from other writers, then so be it, it's going to come from other writers. But I'm not going away completely. Aside from being the editor of the site, I will continue to come down from the mountain from time to time. If you're in the wrestling business and have sent me promotional materials? You're still getting your reviews. That's the part of the site that I refuse to give up, because it involves the most fun part for me, watching cool wrestling. In fact, I have a copy of the Scenic City Invitational sitting on my DVD case that I'm going to watch sooner rather than later. And you know you can count on continued Inspire Pro reviews as long as I keep getting those screeners. The TWB 100 will continue to be a passion project. I will continue to give you my favorite 100 matches each year. If a great social wrong is happening in wrestling, I will address it. I may not write every day. I will definitely write less. But hopefully, what I write will be better.

So that's where I'm at with TWB. Things are changing around here. Hopefully, you'll find it for the better. Once again, thank you for reading, thank you for supporting, and as always, Triple H sucks...

...even if he kinda doesn't suck anymore. God, 2001 me would totally kick the shit out of present-day me for the 180 I've taken on Trips.