Monday, 14 March 2022

Suspending blog activity

Hi all.

This is just a courtesy note to advise that for a short time at least, I am having a break from the whole wargaming social media thing.

I have come to realise that a far too significant proportion of my spare time / behaviour is being drawn to the screen to the point that other areas of life / wargaming relatively diminish.

My most recent post (Ligny boardgame) as a document was more than 4000 words long (yes too long I know) and yet by today had garnered just 5 different voices in the comments. Broadly I’m okay with that as it was obviously the wrong subject / length / presentation for a current audience, however, it has given a 'moment in time' opportunity to step back and evaluate the whole thing about screen / keyboard time.

If I take the Ligny post as an example alone, it covered a long in depth game and it pretty much took as long to put together as the game took to play, or put another way, I could have played that enjoyable game twice for the same investment in time.

As a slight aside, by the 7 PM turn of the game, it looked like a Prussian win and my back was ragging, a good time to stop normally, but as I was writing about it for the blog, I pressed on for a better / fuller narrative outcome, at increasing discomfort and so for me, there has obviously become something of a ‘work’ aspect of the blog. It is a mindset thing I know and unnecessary, but there it is, I don't have the discipline or flexibility to take a different approach.

It is no doubt a culmination of long articles and the likes of the 45 page Christmas Gazette, which have exacerbated the feeling of too much time spent at the keyboard and then the constant internet referencing to keep on top of others and my blog. I know that a sensible solution would simply be to slow down and reduce blog content, but I am instinctively ‘wordy’ :-) 

The bottom line is, bit-by-bit, my free time behaviour has become drawn in and altered by the demands of the screen and I think if I freed that up, I would return more to the days when real things actually got done. I have worked out that by spending much less time at the screen, I can probably be between 2 and 3 times more productive in other areas.

Yesterday morning, I was up handy as always and instead of doing 40 minutes on line as I might usually do, I painted all the jackets and boots on 18 ACW figures, it is that sort of time capture that I am looking at.

I doubt I am alone, as I look around, it seems we have become a world devoted to our screens - though at a cost I am sure!

The blog has a goodly number of followers, to whom I thank warmly and has a hard core of kindly folk commenting regularly, something I have never taken for granted. The blog gets visited around 12,000 times a month, so seems to have been a favourable watering hole for enough people. It is just a shame that more just pass through rather than engaging. I’m not saying bloggers need stroking, but there is a balance to be had, otherwise it can feel like one way traffic.

Anyway, this may turn out to be no more than a break and that I can return refreshed, though perhaps with the volume turned down a bit :-)

In the meantime, I will switch comments off at the blog (so that I don’t have to service it for spam etc), but will keep the blog up as it represents a big body of articles and too many web links would otherwise be broken.

I have paid hosting fees on my Commanders web pages for the next three years, so will likely put some output there, as and when, and just see how that goes. The comments section there has always been switched off, so it allows for a more leisurely, snippet based non-judged, non-measured outlet for me (link below). 

I might even use some of this newly captured time to do a bit of magazine writing as I have some strong inclinations towards their sustainability.

Anyway, I don’t want this to turn into a self indulgent post, it’s just that there are many bloggers and blog users that I value, but I don’t have their e-mail addresses to contact personally to update and thank, so a ‘public address’ is the only practical way to reach out.

I am not posting this anywhere else, so I know it will only be read by the target audience of those who take an interest in the blog, for which I really do thank you.

Postie has just delivered a parcel, so all the good stuff continues :-)

Cheers Norm.

EDIT - please note there is an ongoing discussion relating to this post and the world of blogging over at Jonathan’s blog (Palouse Wargaming Journal) LINK



Friday, 11 March 2022

Ligny 1815

The battle of Ligny from Hexasim makes a return to the table. I was really surprised to find that my last outing with the full historical scenario was four years ago! There is a link in the Resource Section below that covers the fairly detailed AAR that I did back then.

For details of todays game, please use the ‘read more’ tab for the rest of this post

Saturday, 5 March 2022

Hammerhead 2022 wargame show (UK).

It is back! After an absence of two years due to pandemic restrictions, Hammerhead is once again taking its position as a premier participant in the UK wargame show circuit at the Newark Showground (Nottingham UK).

This is a great wargaming experience, spread across two roomy and well-aired buildings, the Cedric Ford Pavilion and George Stephenson Exhibition Hall, accommodating a goodly host of traders and participation games and an ample parking area immediately outside.

One of the notable features of the show is that all of the games put on, have to be participation games. The effect as people stay throughout the day to play, counters the traditional nature of shows where punters start to depart in large numbers around noon, leaving a sluggish trade for the rest of the day - this way the attendance / spend pattern is smoothed out and sustained over the course of the day. Secondly there is a genuine welcoming from all of the game tables from those involved. Could this become the future model for shows?

Hosted by Paul and Sally of Kallistra, they have put a lot into getting this show on the map and it is simply a great success. The feeling that I got today was that clearly gamers were returning with gusto to the show scene.

The rest of this post covers a fine day out - please use the ‘read more’ tab to find out more.