You know, I'm nearing 200 reviews on this site. And when you add my shitty early ones that are only on GFs, I've written well over 200.
When you get to that mark of prolificness, your worst enemy is stagnation, as you've written so much stuff that after awhile you fall into a formula.
I feel I've done that in a big way with about everything I've written this year. I'm not just talking about my "old reviews vs. new reviews in the TT" bitching I've been doing, but my work in general. I've been re-reading a lot of my stuff and I've noticed a certain spark of personality in even certain less-recognized older reviews that just seems lacking in my newer ones.
And when I read some of our newer writers, that feeling gets magnified. I've approved a couple of Suskie's contest entries in recent weeks and have been very impressed...to the point where I feel that my complacency with my "spot" is causing me to be eclipsed by newer guys. I might be established, but their writing shows they have the hunger.
And for a number of us, that hunger is a driving factor. I remember when I first started getting recognized as an upper-tier writer. I kept improving and improving, won a contest, placed highly in a bunch of others, was the first draft pick in last year's TT, etc. I remember, like True mentioned in his blog as a personal goal, thinking I was on the verge of being nearly the best, if not the best, reviewer out there.
And I lost the hunger. This competition has shown me it's time to regain it. I'm not going to make any guarantees for the next round as far as results, but I will say that if I lose to Venter, it won't be because I half-assedly churned out just another review. It'll be because I went out on a limb and fell off.
To me, that's the great thing about getting the high-quality new blood on the site. Not just the overall growth for the place, but because seeing guys you've never heard of before jump on board and submit great stuff is a wonderful motivating force for fossils like me who have a tendency to fall into a rut and put out reviews simply to put out reviews.
|Most recent blog posts from Rob Hamilton...|
|Suskie - August 13, 2007 (09:47 PM)
I can't speak for any of the other new guys, but I can confirm what you've said. I've been reviewing on FAQs for years now, but this tournament is the first chance I've had to put what I've learned to use among writers that I really admire. I have a strong desire, a "hunger" as you put it, to do well in this tournament, because I love reviewing and am glad I can finally do so in an environment where reviewing is appreciated. It's the newness of the whole thing that's motivating me -- I saw this as my chance to really become noticed as a reviewer, and I'm happy that things have been going so well for me.
You're a great reviewer, OD, and if motivation is the one thing you lack right now, I hope said "new threats" will pump it into your veins again.
|honestgamer - August 13, 2007 (09:59 PM)
I'm sorry to hear that you're placing so much importance on beating me, Overdrive. I hate to see your spirit crushed, but at the same time, my team could use another win. So... well, let's just say my feelings are mixed about what I should do. I mean, it's a foregone conclusion that I'll win if I really try... >8D
|bluberry - August 14, 2007 (11:54 AM)
yeah totally Venter.
|overdrive - August 14, 2007 (04:46 PM)
Man, Venter, you might be the only person to take a post by someone talking about needing to rejuvenate their writing style because they feel their new stuff has been getting stale in which you're only mentioned as an aside and jump to the conclusion I'm placing a lot of importance on beating you....
I look at improving my writing and not falling into the same ol' traps of redundancy as my goal. If I do that, beating you is a given. If I don't do that, beating you probably's a given, too, but I really don't want to see "this wasn't great, but you had a clown college drop-out as your opponent, so you win" critiques this week. They just don't massage my enormous ego that much.
|espiga - August 14, 2007 (05:18 PM)
Be sure to check out my upcoming review, OD. It's a pretty unique piece and it may inspire you to do something different.
Then again, it might not. Who knows! =D
|aschultz - August 24, 2007 (08:32 AM)
I think it's good to have that sort of formula and to get sick of it. I probably have more fun reading reviews that may be new than I do writing new stuff. I've come up against a wall where I see only 2 or 3 new things about a game and don't want to put in stuff I've written before in some form or another.
Getting sick of reviews certainly got me motivated to try Other Stuff and maybe your creative energies need to go off in a completely different direction.