?

Log in

03 July 2008 @ 09:08 am
It's true - I don't ever update this thing do I? I also almost always say that I'm gonna update it more often when I happen to update it at all, so I won't say that this time. I'd like to, but no promises. Ideally, with the extra time away from roleplaying that I have nowadays, I'll be able to post more frequently....but we'll see.

Matchwriters.

That's the topic.

So I'm reading around and I've been thinking about how I see my own fed. If you don't know already, I own and run Empire Pro Wrestling on FW.com. It seems we generally get very positive feedback even from those not in the fed, so I've been pondering just what our identity is. I think that in general the tone of any given fed reflects the personality of the owner. That's true in the real life corporate world and it's true in our fantasy world as well. I think that without stroking my own ego too much, that more than anything most would tell you that during my roleplaying career I've been mostly known for being consistent and steady. I've taken the ups and downs of the ride in stride and generally managed to ride through controversies without too much long lasting damage. I've seen more than my share of people fall to the wayside because something didn't go their way and they let their emotions get the best of them. And, I've seen people flash hotter than hot and then never be heard from again.

Why is that? I think early on I could have gone down a different path. I found myself to be very competitive in my early years and would take it pretty personally when I lost. Of course, "early years" for me was a time when I was 15-16 years old and spending money to get back a paper bulletin with match results. So maybe there's an intelligence factor in there somewhere as well. But I think eventually I decided that I just liked the journey of the game. I enjoy the moments within it and a lot of the time the best moments have come without me winning anything, or at times without me being involved at all. So the pure enjoyment of the hobby kept me consistent - so that even when something didn't go my way, or threatened to anger me to the point of doing something stupid - I've been able to step back and think first of all, this is only a game. And second of all, it's not all about me.

And that's what brings me back to my topic.

I think our reputation with Empire Pro covers a few bases. I think we're known for good solid storytelling. Our angles garner us the most positive feedback and I'm proud of that because I love a good wrestling story. I'm an old schooler at heart, so a good solid story with a good build and shocking climax marks me out to this day. I've also been very blessed with handlers who understand the big picture. They've bought into my "system", to use coach speak and allowed for the telling of some fantastic stories that garner praise from outside the fed. That's the highest praise to me, because it would be quite the story indeed that would cause me to click over and read a fed I'm not involved in. And finally, and this ties into the rest - we're known for a very very friendly "backstage". This is something I specifically strive for. I just flat out don't put up with petty bickering, and this is the one area when I'm very strict. I will not compromise what I believe is the right way of doing things for anyone, no matter who you are. If you like politics, you'll be weeded out - and I won't even pretend to be doing anything else. I have a natural inclination to protect the little guy who can't catch a break.

So you're thinking - I thought this was about matchwriters.

It is.

In my fed, my matchwriters, my handlers set the tone of the entire fed. They take their lead from me, they take the tone and the direction from me, but they are the absolute heart of the fed. As a whole, Empire Pro is what it is. Everyone who knows me, knows that I really don't like writing matches all that much. I'll do so in a pinch, but I'd rather not. So what I want to do is recognize three people who have prominently written matches for the fed and made the fed as enjoyable as it is.

Ryan Strawsma - If you're wondering where you've heard the name, he handles various characters around the internet, most prominently Rocko Daymon, Olvir Arsvinnar and Chronic Collizion. Some may or may not know, but Ryan was at one time a co-owner of Empire Pro. Unfortunately, his youthful willfulness made him a casualty of my hardass nature as we butted heads at the time and he chose to leave the hobby for a while. As he changed his stance on some things, we came back into contact and he was I believe surprised to find out that I held none of it against him whatsoever. Truth is, Ryan is a markedly different person than that first incarnation and I've found him to be light years more developed as a writer and as a person. He's become my go-to writer and regularly takes on multiple matches per show. Ryan's been known to take as many as three or four matches in a pinch. Many of the great main events you see on our shows were written by Ryan. If he wished to do so, he would make a fantastic fed owner in his own right one day - and I've told him as much.

Adam Shinder - Adam handles Troy Douglas and Second Coming, so you have your frame of reference on who I'm talking about here. Hard to imagine you wouldn't know anyway, as Adam has made this his true breakout year. Adam's been good for a very long time but always seemed to be pulled away by some real life issue or another. Always on the brink, but never able to take that next step has always been his reputation. But it's never been about talent, only about oppurtunity and personal time to take advantage. But this year, he's taken his much deserved huge step forward and received the attention his talent has always deserved. Adam writes on every show and has been the 1b to Ryan Strawsma's 1a. If Ryan needs a break or wants something simpler than the main event, Adam gets it and there's no noticable drop off. Both guys "get" the comic stylings of the broadcast crew very well and can seamlessly write the Empire Pro style without even thinking about it.

Jamar Short - Jay came back on the scene this past year and it's been a very welcome return. I first ran into Jay when I "invaded" CSWA back in '03 and he was one of the first people I was paired up against. He took some time off to begin the process of what I can only assume is his quest to buy his own country and populate it himself. Then, he unexpectedly came back and started kicking ass right where he left off. Jay has written quite a few matches and particularly some very memorable matches along the way for various pay-per-views especially. Jay has also written almost every word of the last year's Triple X/Ice Tre story along with Paul Brisbin and continues to write that story even now. Jay's been getting deserved attention this year too, but he's always been this good. So it's no surprise.


There are others who have written for me obviously. Recently, some of the newer handlers have pitched in, including Kevin Healey, who handles Fusenshoff, Patrick Schutt and Jeff Pena. Justin Buitron (did I spell that right?), who handles Stalker has also done a shitload of writing for us lately and is quickly moving up into that upper echelon.

Some honorable mentions for past contributions have to go to Jeff Bolichowski - who like Ryan Strawsma is a former owner-slash-co-owner of Empire Pro and is partially responsible for one of the most talked about matches and angles in our history, the Dis vs. Beast match that ended with Lindsay Troy winning the first of many World Championships as a fantasy wrestling character. Also, to Tom Holzerman who before TEAM took off into the stratosphere wrote as many great quality matches as anyone else I've mentioned.

So I think - why do my people enjoy the fed so much? Why are they so loyal? They're loyal because they ARE Empire Pro. When we get accolades, it's not just me getting them. It's everyone that writes a word of dialogue for the show, a single match, a single segment. They make the fed run, and I'm forever greatful - because as I sit here today retired as an active roleplayer for the most part - I can't forsee a time where I would no longer enjoy running this fed. It's been my favorite part of this hobby, here in my soon to be 20th year.

Maybe when my son is old enough to take it over, I'll step down. But he's only two.....so it looks like you people have me for at least another 20 years or so.
 
 
04 January 2008 @ 08:03 am
Ok, so one thing I get a lot of times is an expression of amazement or a head shake of disbelief at how I juggle everything that I seem to juggle.

At the moment, for example I'm working one full time job, a part time job - for a total of about 65-70 hours a week on average - I'm married with three children, I run Empire Pro and I handle Dan Ryan in TEAM, NFW, A1E, CSWA, NAPW and EUWC. So, the question is - how do I do it? That's what I hear.

In some cases it's obvious. CSWA is on a relaxed schedule, obviously. NFW is on a consistent but still loose schedule as well, although for me it's absolutely perfect because of my other commitments. TEAM is an event commitment, so they tend to be spaced out a little and EUWC is practically dead.

A1E is a very consistent fed in terms of pumping out shows. You get one on schedule, every single time. So, you really have to stay focused. NAPW has an interesting way of doing things which I like. They're modeled after an indy fed that runs shows the last two weeks of the month, then goes on a break for two weeks. It's a different and fun system that I dig, and the level of talent is outstanding.

But, back on point - someone mentioned to me yesterday that when they went to browse the top tens on the new FW.com site, Dan Ryan was on pretty much every fed's list. Well the thing is, I don't know. I guess I seem to be able to organize things in my head extremely well. I have a spot in my life for everything, with my family and work obviously getting most of my time but also I've learned to segment my ideas in my head for each fed and just where I'm at in each one so that when I need to sit down and write for one I can generally do so in ten minutes without much prep time. It's always been that way for me. I've always just sat down and written roleplay off the top of my head, gone back for spelling corrections, then posted. I know my character inside and out, so it no longer requires thought.

I think that may be why once I settled on Dan Ryan I stopped roleplaying other characters for the most part. It's hard to imagine getting into the head of a character as well as I have with him, so I preferred to master and tweak him rather than split my time. More than likely it'll stay that way until I retire him fully.

With EPW, I've managed to develop a system for keeping things running. Sometimes it works better than others but I think it explains the loyalty to the fed and the lack of any OOC issues. Honestly, I can't remember the last OOC issue we had and I rarely get complaints because the handler base is very involved in the production of shows, and therefore the fed itself.

I rarely have to write a match myself, which is good because I hate writing matches. Imagine that right? A fedhead who hates writing matches. I can, I just don't like it. So for television shows, generally I'll take volunteers and any match not claimed will typically get the thorough shortform treatment. Pay-per-views get full write ups no matter what, but it keeps the TV shows moving a little more.

Here's an example of the sort of weeks I have, using this week as an example. This week I've been trying to keep in touch with EPW writers on matches that are due in tomorrow for Aggression 34. All the matches were covered so I'm hopeful that this might actually be a fully written show, and for a television show as stated earlier, that's a bonus. I have two major segments due for A1E today, one of which I finished and turned in yesterday and another which I'll be working on later. That show comes out tonight. I just finished up a roleplay period for NFW, a match against Kin Hiroshi and Felix Red for the NFW World Title. I believe that ended on Tuesday/Wednesday. Ryan, of NAPW asked me to get a reaction roleplay together and post it last Friday, to which I said I'd have one over the weekend. Oops! Heh. So, I'll likely work on that today as well. Then, as soon as the matches come in I'll be putting Aggression together and posting it, moving us closer to another pay-per-view. This, plus constant brainstorming with Jarret concerning our A1E angle - and fortunately none of this fell in a major roleplay period week or I'd be swamped.

So there it is, a little look at my craziness. Yeah, I'm nuts. Yeah, I can't turn down a good story and yes, when it gets slow and I see a good fed, I tend to join up no matter what my future schedule is gonna be.

But it's fun, I love it and I don't remember ever having any major burnout since I've started this. In fact, any time I've taken a break I've missed it so much that I had to come right back. And I imagine I won't be quitting until that's gone.
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
02 January 2008 @ 09:47 am
Well, I'm back. Back again.

Tom temporarily shuttered his blog today, which sucks. Tom has become as close as I've ever seen to a non-kayfabe (to avoid Ivy mentions) e-wrestling journalist as there is in this hobby. A few years back, I got on this kick to start trying to siphon some non-FW.com handlers into EPW and specifically started by chatting up and recruiting handlers in A1E who I thought were talented. It rankled some people, but I didn't care. We had gotten to a point where fifteen or so of us were all in the same feds fighting each other every week. It was getting really stagnant. Tom and I had many long conversations about this sort of stuff back then, and really EPW suffered for it as many of the originals fought this trend pretty strongly. It was proven a solid strategy however as EPW grew much much stronger for it and it opened the door for the end of an old A1E vs. FW.com 'they're biased against us and vice versa' opinion. I gave them a chance. The ones who worked and wrote well, I pushed. Things started to change and some of them ventured into other feds on our site. Tom was one of those guys, actually. He was an A1E guy who I actually clashed with initially, as documented in his own blog. But in those conversations around the time of my push for A1E talent to try us out, he came up with a plan that took my whole thing to another level, and that's where TEAM was conceived. I had no delusions of ever even thinking of doing anything on that kind of a level, but he did, then he did it and executed it. He also was the only blogger among those of us who started writing to establish himself as a voice that handlers from all over would read and listen to. That also had a lot to do with his own branching out, which took him across genres to places I'd never go in a million years. Styles that didn't match up with his work? Didn't matter. He took them on.

Hopefully, this temporary hiatus from his blog is temporary indeed - but as a married man I know how hectic that sort of a change can be. For those who I've been around in the game who have gone from single to married in front of me, there tends to be a curve between a single guy doing this shit around work and school, to a married guy getting used to life as a married man where you feel like a douche if you even think of saying "I'll be there in a minute. Just lemme finish this roleplay!"

Still, Tom and his blog have done more for bringing different ends of the e-wrestling world together than anyone I'm aware of, so I thought on the day he shut it down for a while, that ought to be said.

The other thing I wanted to talk about is the big angle going on in A1E. Now, Jarret and Phil both have commented on it so far but I figured I should weigh in since I'm so prominently featured. I might as well give my perspective, eh?

Well really, the genesis for all of this goes back farther than even Jarret and Phil mentioned. Truthfully, as long as I've known Jarret he's always wanted to be a part of what he calls "the big angle". We do cycle to cycle angles all the time, and some of them even end in strong or amazing ways. Jarret was a player in the EPW Dis angle, although no one on the planet knew who Dis was gonna be - I even had alternates planned in case Lindsay either couldn't complete the angle or in my opinion, didn't roleplay worthy of the title. I don't godbook, so I had several avenues prepared. However, Jarret wasn't in on the planning of that angle and that's something he's always wanted to do - orchestrate a mind blowing, oh my god did you see that?! angle that people would talk about.

So he's come to me several times with snippets of ideas or questions and we've bounced off of each other constantly with things like concepts of what shocks in e-wrestling these days. What's unexpected and how to you invoke that true sense of wonder in a reader, a real mark out moment? I'm a pretty hard person to get to mark out. I mean, really hard. People who know me, know I can be kinda cynical especially with wrestling concepts. Katz has PM'd me on many occasions, some from his fWo days where he did really great stuff and linked me to stuff to read and ask for an opinion. My standard line "it was pretty good" would inevitably come back. LOL. Rarely would you get the 'holy shit, that rocked' response from me. On the other hand, if he got it he knew I REALLY liked it. I suppose that there are "tried and true" concepts in wrestling that bore the shit out of me and others that I subscribe to, but I had long since left the mindset where much of anything could shock me anymore. Even the last couple of awards shows I've seen and some of the "shocking" moments over the last few years have left me with a huge "EH".

I remember a conversation with Phil Banet during the Cross vs. Anti-Cross feud. It was building to a big unmasking and it was coming to the climax. In an IM conversation I told Phil..."I'll bet you $100 that's Jarret bringing Beast back". Phil was on the BC, so he did his best "why do you say that?" Sure enough, Beast it was. I saw many people going apeshit not believing it was him. Maybe that's the thing about being a fedhead though. We book angles so much that we've just about seen it all. We can see most things coming a mile away.

So that's where it came to. I told Jarret, and he was of the same mindset - we needed to do something that would shock the two of US. What would shock me? Jarret wanted to do something jointly between EPW and A1E. Now, anyone who knows me knows that I'm pretty famously vehemently opposed to invasion angles. It's absolutely the most overdone angle in wrestling since about 1997 or so. Goddamn NWO.

So I started throwing some crazy random shit at Jarret on the only way I could see some invasion variation working. Lindsay Branca was privy to some of this conversation because I mentioned some of it to her and she cringed...which was what I was trying to get out of Jarret anyway, hoping he'd abandon this whole invasion nonsense.

One of the things I brought up was Dan Ryan taking the A1E belt to an EPW ring, pulling down his pants and taking a shit on it. I waited for the horrified reply, and Jarret says "that might be possible".

So, what would shock me? I guess that would. Either he lost his damn mind, I thought or else he trusts me pretty implicitly with protecting and rebuilding his title.

Naturally, I told him I didn't actually want to do that but it got me thinking more legitimately and seriously about doing that "big angle".

The beginning phase of it, which has already played out was outlined in a very thin and rough form by Jarret in a private message, and over the next month or so I would reply back and fill in some details on what I was thinking should happen. He'd say he loved it, send me some thoughts of his which I would in turn like as well, and we would go back and forth like this for a while.

Dan Ryan taking over A1E under the radar like this was his baby, really. It's what comes next, that you haven't seen yet that's mine. It leaves both feds looking much much stronger, I believe and it delivers hopefully a climax that people will talk about for a long time.

Of course, now that I've hyped it up it may not...heh.

When I read the final match of the Dis angle, the Dis vs. Beast title match, I felt inside like I was watching an old school Wrestlemania main event, back when you'd jump up and down at the finish or gasp at the big swerve - and I knew what was coming. I gave Jeff Bolichowski extremely detailed, down to spot by spot instructions on what story I wanted told in the match, even going so far as giving him a detailed match outline for the write-up and he delivered a masterpiece.

I enjoy creating that feeling with a story more than anything else in e-fedding.

I still like to win. Who doesn't? But evoking moments like that, making people remember being a kid and marking out - that makes this fun for me.

Hopefully this will be the first in a longer line of posts from me this year. We'll see. :-)

Hope everyone's holidays kicked ass.

Even Siegel's.
 
 
Current Mood: goodgood
 
 
25 October 2006 @ 07:50 pm
I recently joined EUWC. It's a down period for pretty much all of the feds I currently roleplay for except for A1E, and really I've been meaning to do it for years. On the occasions now and then when Matt Pickstock and I have spoken it has come up and I was always just a little too busy to take on another commitment.

But now, with CSWA in cardwriting mode, NFW the same and me waiting on my matchwriters to finish so I can post Aggression in EPW I found myself craving somewhere to write and found myself looking over their forums, so I went ahead and threw my name into the ring.

Now, I'd be less than honest if I didn't say up front that I've heard very very mixed things on the fed and that quite of few of them were negative. Some of them were from people I knew in the hobby and that might have had something to do with me not MAKING time to try the place out over the years, but I've always felt that you need to judge a place or a thing on its own merit and not on hearsay. And I can't let myself form an opinion on a fed that I've never taken part in.

So, I sign up and get booked pretty much right away. My first opponent is a masked character and right away I pretty much know who he is, and yes...your secret remains safe with me. Don't worry. Heh.

I'm looking around the website, kinds laying back and reading OOC comments and whatnot and first up I must say I dig the website. It's not at all flashy or particularly innovative but it's functional and very very user friendly. I like a lot of the little touches that Matt had incorporated into it and I really just like it a lot.

One of the things I've heard over on the fw.com forums and in private conversations is the bad impression of the handlers from EUWC. Let me just say. It's a different world, and it works within the context of their community. They are very outspoken and feel no need to hold any sort of decorum in the way they communicate. I've seen some OOC arguing go on, which is something that's basically forbidden in fw.com circles but it's accepted here as an accepted form of posting. It's just different and it explains why they ruffled feathers on our forums.

In EUWC though it fits and it makes sense. And not only that, more it's pretty minor really when you think about it. Much more often it's all just playful sparring and joking around amongst guys that have written together for a while.

I also have to say that I don't think we were getting the best of some of their stars when they wrote for TEAM. Jay Smash in particular to me is ten times better here on his home turf than anything I saw him write for CSWA or for TEAM. I read his roleplays for Mainframe and I get it. It's pretty good stuff that I can get behind whereas his TEAM stuff I admittedly didn't think was very good at all. It's just the environment, and maybe he didn't adapt well to us and we're just different. But that's fine. He does well in EUWC and deservedly so.

They have their share of malcontents like any fed. They have their share of guys who don't belong in the spot they have, also. The tag champs up until the last show were two guys who can't write their way out of a paper bag and I think may be around twelve years old or so, but they only had the belts because someone no-showed as I understand it.

Overall, I'm enjoying myself so far. I like what I see and I do plan to be here long term as far as I can tell right now. It's a little exciting also to come to a place where I'm not as well known. Building a new fanbase is an exciting prospect. That, and Matt is just a generally all around nice guy.

Now for the second part of this post, an idea for a fun little thing in EPW...and since I don't have access to the forums at work, I'll put it out here.

I'm thinking of having a vote on our forums for the greatest matches in the history of the fed. I'd peruse the archives and go through some of the best ones and put them into a poll and have the handlers pick their favorites, be it from memories of a great feud, just a well written match or some big moment in fed history. Then I'd put the winners into one big supershow type posting and treat sort of like a DVD release - best of EPW.

Thoughts? Ideas? Cash donations?
 
 
27 September 2006 @ 02:58 pm
By request the original lineup for the first Battleground Britain that I put together, posted 1/10/04. Sadly the only location of the backup files with the card itself in them was (as far as I know) on Chad Dupree's computer when he passed.

But for old time's sake - here it is, the lineup:


Official Lineup:

GXW Unified World Title (Hell in a Cell, No interference)

"Steel City Icon" John Miller (c) vs. Boogie Smallz

WFW World Title Match:

"The Phenom" Shawn Hart vs. Scotty Michaels vs. Minion

CSWA rematch of World Title match from Primetime

"The Ego Buster" Dan Ryan (CSWA World Champ) vs. "Living Legend" Mark Windham (Former CSWA World Champ)

The Professionals ("Cocky" Craig Miles & Eddie Mayfield) vs. Troy Windham & Shane Southern

"Total Elimination" Eli Flair vs. "Good God" Kevin Powers

"Queen of the Ring" Lindsay Troy vs. Vladimir Vlachenko

Cross (A1E World Champion) vs. DreamMaker (Crucifixion Match)

Jean Rabesque (CSWA Greensboro Champion) vs. Christian Sands

Jonathan Marx vs. Adam Benjamin (Final MCW World Champion)

GXW Television Title Match:

Stephen Waltz (c) vs. "Apocalypse" Gabriel Poe

GXW Xtreme Title (Spin the Wheel/Make a Deal Rules)

Clapper (c) vs. David Allen Black vs. Troy Douglas

Promo vs. Beast

The Assassins vs. The Monsta Boyz

Hellfighter vs. Eric "The Dragon" Davis

Max Blackshire vs. Ice Tre
 
 
 
22 September 2006 @ 01:51 pm
All of a sudden I have time to write but no cards to write for. Aggression is finished, I asked for an extension in TEAM and then was unable to write for it still, Golden Dreams is in the writing stage, I have no match in UCW this week and the NFW and CSWA shows are in limbo.

So, I had an idea I wanted to write about.

If you've read Mick Foley's books you've seen him refer to his list of the best things he's ever done in wrestling. So here it is, with a twist. The best things I've ever done in e-wrestling, in addition to the worst things I've done or been associated with.

Worst:

1. Let's get this out of the way early. Heh. I started in fantasy wrestling at age 14 back in 1988 in a little play by mail game called IWA. It's still around actually I believe, which is scary. My first most embarrassing moment comes from these early years. I created my wrestlers and gave them a manager who I used as the mouthpiece and called "The Mastermind". That's right, go ahead and wince. Wow, right? I'd throw around random adolescent trash talk and generally make an ass of myself. To make it worse, and make it the thing that's REALLY embarrassing about this: I claimed to have won a bunch of titles I never actually won, including some World Titles that I never won, and a lot of people believed it, too. It was so embarrassing that even as I grew older and matured into a person who wouldn't make such ridiculous claims, I never actually admitted to it until now. VERY embarrassing. If AJ Honold stumbles across this blog, he'll remember this. So AJ, shut up.

2. In 1997 or so as I was beginning to work my way into online fantasy wrestling, AJ recruited me for the CSWA. I was nonchalant about it and totally uninterested but he raved about it and was getting on my nerves about it. So I joined up and was put in the Greensboro Title tournament. I promptly ignored the match, never roleplayed once and was jobbed out of the Round Robin round in three straight matches. Look in the CSWA archives under that year's tourney and you'll see "The Ego Buster" listed as 0-3 under the bracket. Nice huh? If I had put some effort into it and stuck around back then, CSWA history may have been a little different - and I may have made my mark on it before 2002-2003, when I finally made a real entrance into the fed.

3. Any OOC fight I've ever had with anyone in this game. I was a notoriously overprotective friend to Chad Dupree, and it led to some fights with people OOC that I regret especially in regards to my reactions to perceived insults directed at Chad. It's hard to explain that, but I did manage to mend a lot of these fences after Chad passed away - so that's the silver lining.

Now, the best:

1. Battleground Britain. I'm gonna pump myself up a little here, so forgive me - but this was the first time on our circuit in a long long time that anyone had gone out of their way to do a real supershow across feds. I think it was the way I did it that appealed. I didn't book a thing. What I did was provide a unique showcase for the entire circuit. I asked fedheads across the circuit to let me put on a World Title match from their fed, let them book it and either write it themselves or I or my team of writers from my fed (GXW at the time) would write it. In every case they had us write it. I was able to get off the top of my head five World Title matches on one show, including WFW, CSWA, GXW and a few others that escape me. In addition to that, I threw out the oppurtunity to do dream matches, matches people always wanted to do or see but never were able to and we did that also. It was just great fun and not only provided a showcase for the circuit's best writers and roleplayers, but also acted as a recruiting tool for the feds repped and mine as well. And yes, I do plan to do another of these eventually.

2. Russian Roulette. Everyone knows about this show by now and it's been overanalyzed so I won't say too much. But I planned this thing meticulously down to the last detail to the point where I had five alternate endings to fit whoever won that tournament in RP. And in the end it worked out better than I ever could have imagines. Then, when Lindsay Troy became the first woman world champ - Lindsay told me that day that she teared up when it happened. Years of feeling like they won't put you over because you're a female and then it happened for her. She was moved big time, and I was able to give that moment to her. Genuine moments like that make it all worth it to me. And does anyone doubt her now? I'm so proud of that angle and that match.

3. Giving CSWA a chance. This sounds weird maybe, but I was decidedly anti-CSWA up until 2002 or so. I came into the fed in the worst way possible. I decimated their champ on a GXW show because I believed the handler of their champ had left us for CSWA under false pretenses and it pissed me off. I wasn't even the booker or owner of GXW at the time but it ticked me off when Evan Aho said he wanted to pull back from GXW to spend more time with family and then appeared on CSWA TV the next week. We jacked him up on a GXW by convincing him to do one last show and it was a real legit shoot. Merritt was pissed of course. That's not the part I'm happy about. What I'm glad about is that through talking to Evan and Chad, cooler heads prevailed and I began a real career in CSWA. It also made for a fine angle for my arrival and gave me the sort of real heat that makes a heel character special. I'm glad I stuck around.


That'll do for now. More in a few days. :)
 
 
07 September 2006 @ 10:42 am
I'm gonna try this again.

The e-fed blog phenomenon is starting to die a slow death. Tom's the only one updating anymore so I think I need to jump back in.

E-fedding on our community is getting a renaissance or at least in the beginning stages of one I believe. Most of this is due to the cross pollenization of communities lately, thanks in no small part to Tom's efforts to bring them all together.

I played my part in starting this phenomenon when I began my concerted effort to bring the talented handlers of A1E and that circuit into my fed to give it a fresh influx of talent. Tom took that lead through our interaction when I brought him over and ran with it tenfold.

I've been getting a ton of applications to EPW. They never stop really. Some good, some not so good but most all of which are from people I've never heard of in my life.

My friends, that is a good thing.

Either more people are getting into wrestling again or else we're simply becoming noticed on a larger scale. Maybe some won't stick, who knows? But I know that if 10-15 people apply and three or four really top quality handlers stick, then I've got a pretty good thing going.

What's bugging the living hell out of me right now is my website. The layout is fine and the design it good, but my inability to update it is driving me up the fucking wall. I can't do HTML and I can't do website work for shit so I always depend on someone else's charity to keep it up for me. Unfortunately everyone else is busy too, so it's starting to get dangerously out of date. Months into an IC reign and the guy who held the belt before Karl Brown is still listed as champ.

I have such a large laundry list of things to update on there that it's becoming quite a workload for whoever finally can do it for me.

Gold Rush is due any day now and I'm really looking forward to it. I laid it all out on the line, between working two jobs and trying to move into a new house at the same time but as you know Gregg is Gregg - great every time. We'll see how it goes. This is a rare case where I'm competitive instead of creative. I'd like to win that match very much. Gregg seems to bring out the best in me, much like Steve always did.

Phil and I have stagnated slightly as tag champs in A1E but that's mostly my fault. My focus was elsewhere for a while there. But, I'm focused again and plan on putting my best foot forward no matter what from here on out. We've got too much talent to be boring. So I'm not gonna let that happen.

That'll do for now. I'll try and update this thing a little more.
 
 
05 April 2006 @ 10:30 am
It's official. I'm now working two jobs. So...WHOO HOOO!! Less time to spend on e-fedding than ever before!!!

Actually I don't anticipate it being too bad. I'm usually quite good at managing my time, so nothing should suffer any more than usual because of this.

Now to the point of my first post in a while. Everyone else has done their Best of 2005 lists and comments and I think it's high time I do something similar. Although, instead of the best of 2005 and instead of doing the usual categories I'll talk about who and what I think are the best things going right now. As a disclaimer let me say that I'm only going to speak on what I know well. I won't be speaking on the NFW West as I am a well-known non-reader of the West and it wouldn't be fair to them. So, any exclusion in that regard is intentional to the degree that I'm excusing myself from making any judgement on what they are doing. Also, any fed that I'm not in, I don't read. So it wouldn't be fair to them either. Basically - this is what I'm into right now, and not a true "best of" list.

Let me make a declarative statement to start this thing off.

NFW is the best e-fed that I currently follow, bar none.

I don't really even think it's all that close. We at EPW got the popular vote on this subject, but NFW does things I wouldn't even try to do. Katz and company have a unique vision that they've made successful, although with his share of disappointments as well (who doesn't have them?), and his writing is the absolute best on the net that I'm aware of. Whether or not you like the booking, whether or not you like the subject matter - and I have thought various things in the fed were dumb, heh - the writing is the best on the net, that's all there is to it. And I will say also that the small things that are bad, are so outweighed by the excellent it's not even funny. When something goes wrong, it gets amplified. But the good about that fed is just up in the stratosphere. Without bias in any way, shape of form, the rest of us running feds in this circle are simple working for second place. NFW is that good.

Next...

Sean Edmunds doesn't get near the credit he deserves on our circuit. Is it because he handles Beau Michaels and it's a bit of a controversial character? I don't know. Maybe it is. To me that doesn't matter one bit. I'll say this, up until about four months ago I had never sat down and read an New ERA card from top to bottom. It wasn't because I didn't want to or I had any sort of problem with doing so. It was simply a time thing. I generally don't read any feds I'm not in, so it's not a strange thing really. But New ERA had a long history of working with feds I was in, all the way back to GXW. We had a banner on our site to Sean's fed although even then I never did read it. Sean as I understand it, had a falling out with a previous owner of EPW before I took over and it had caused some tensions between the feds. I didn't even know about that, and I always wondered why there was a tension there from him toward the fed. All I knew is that I took over, and there it was. But in trying to rectify that I took it upon myself to go read his fed and see how good it was for myself. I always knew Sean was great as a roleplayer, another area where he doesn't get the credit he deserves but I didn't know he was so good at matchwriting and storytelling within the framework of an e-fed structure. And he is. He's very good. He does it all himself, which is an amazing thing to me that I could never do. I think that in the current climate where every vote of poll is EPW this and EPW that, I need to take the time out to recognize what he does as well. I don't run EPW to compete and eliminate competition within this circuit. I'm much more interested in lifting up those who deserve it and working for the betterment of the circuit as a whole. Good, talented fed heads are not a dime a dozen.

The most entertaining writer to me on the circuit write now is Jeff Paternostro.

Come on, how can you not like Yori Yakamo, Jr.? Jeff was always gold in the old days in MBE, so I'm told. Now, I'm super glad to see that he can come to our side of the e-fedding world and seem as fresh to the circuit as if he was a rookie and yet write like the seasoned pro he is. He's an outstanding writer and he does different styles very well. Hida is a serious as Yori is goofy. But they're both written with a deep understanding of who they are and what they are. They are characters that you want to read no matter where they are. And I don't give praise like that out often.

UCW must have the worst luck of any fed I know. Multiple times the website has gone down, they've lost their threads and had several setbacks in getting their cards out because of this. I just hope they hold on and push through all of this because they still have so much potential as a fed. I wouldn't have signed on to help if I didn't think so. It's important to develop new leagues wherever we can, even though they aren't technicaly part of the FW.com family.

The Hulk-A-Thon match was a great read to me. Tom mentioned that he thought some people may say the ending was too over the top. And really, of course it was over the top. But I think that was kinda the point. I don't mind the time travel, Powermaster through a portal, schizophrenia stuff. I think it was entertaining as hell. And really, that's fine with me in doses. The point is I enjoyed it, and I liked very much the way my character was handled in the match. Katz is just that good.
 
 
13 March 2006 @ 07:00 am
Up front, I'm gonna do this here because over the last few days I've had many people come to me via IM or Email to ask what happened exactly, what I'm gonna do, offer support or suggestions, give opinions, and so on. I appreciate the concern and everything that's been offered or said, and it's just easier to make a comment here rather than to retell a story to a bunch of different people.

Now then...

I'm not pulling EPW off of the forums. I'm also not quitting the feds Paul is in, although a final decision on my involvement in WFW hasn't been made. Paul has invited me to stay if I wish, and I have told him that no matter what happens and no matter what the result of my WFW North American Title shot that I will show him and his fed, and his title belt the proper respect it deserves. If I am to win and decide to leave, I will fulfill whatever storyline works best to transition it to the next person. If I don't win, then we don't have to worry anyhow.

Paul came to me an made an apology last night. If he can do that, then I don't feel I need to be as hardline as I was determined to be yesterday. A few people understood my position but thought it was too much, and that's fine. You also said you had my back either way, and I appreciate that.

I think it's important to find a common ground on things when there is a conflict of this nature. Paul and I talked for a very long time last night. I believe his issues with EPW pretty much go to before my time running it, or right as it was transitioning into my control. Whether realizing that causes him to adjust his position on it or not, I can't say. That's for Paul to do or not do.

Either way, I think the statement that needs to be made is that we as a community need to redevelop a sense of building each other up and not tearing each other down. We need to rediscover the "friendly" in friendly rivalry.

If EPW receives some accolades, it doesn't mean NFW or NEW or WFW don't deserve them. These things come and go, and really EPW is the new kid on the block in terms of notoriety around here. But, us doing well can only help the community as a whole.

I have in the past and will continue to direct people to feds other than mine if I think they would enjoy it. I answered Shane Carnes' (Steven Shane) questions on WFW, and he signed up. We must be here to help each other and the hobby as a whole.

I've gotten Paul's promise that he'll help do that. There's plenty of trust that needs to be built between the two of us, but for that to ever happen we both have to step back and make sure we both know what exactly caused the rift in the first place - and if it's legitimate, or even matters anymore.

Hopefully that answers any questions.

If you ask me for details after this, Steve - Family Ties gets posted to the forums. COUNT ON IT!

Sh-la-la-la.....
 
 
12 March 2006 @ 02:14 pm
Sorry it's been so long since my last update. This one requires no responses to it, because really it's more of a statement than anything else.

But here's my basic point.

Sometimes a line must be drawn. Mine has been drawn and repeatedly crossed over some time now. Most people who know me know that even when someone or something bothers me, I tend to get angry and then quickly get over it. I then generally feel bad for any bad feelings and do whatever it takes to keep the peace.

Not this time.

Unless you've been under a rock, or simply don't care you know what's been going down in NFW. You can easily read it for yourself if you so wish, but even then you'd only know the public side of things. I literally have months and months and months worth of chat logs and IM logs I could get into to discuss it further, but I won't. All of that information has been reserved for other purposes and other forums, and won't be put out for all eyes to see.

Quite simply, I believe that Paul Miller is a cancer to a cohesive e-fedding community. That may seem odd to many of you for several reasons, most of which relate to his ability to pull the wool over people's eyes and a talent to twist facts to his benefit whenever necessary. Again, I have enough concrete proof to show otherwise but that won't be made public unless extreme circumstances dictate it.

I believe there are a select few who will defend him no matter what, and that's fine. I'm not asking for anyone's support. You should stand by your friend, and I respect that so long as you can be sure you know exactly who it is you're standing by.

Chad Merritt, Steve Thomas and Jon Katz are all very aware of the full range of how I feel about this issue - but I have not and will not demand any action from any of them. Each of us must make our own decisions based on what we feel.

Having said that, I think the most obvious conclusion is that I will no longer be associated with Paul in any way, shape or form. He has displayed a basic inability to keep his personal feelings out of his roleplay, and has already broken at least one promise to not bring up his issues with EPW in NFW. That means of course, I am no longer in WFW as of right now. I'm pretty sure that's fine with him as well.

I also find myself genetically indisposed to not defending myself or my fed against the sort of baseless accusations he engages in - and if you buy his story about it being a part of his character and how he relates to Lindsay Troy - I must say I have loads of property in Death Valley for sale cheap. But the point is, I can't sit back and just take it. If you say I should ignore it, I say I can't and won't do that.

And likely, people are getting tired of the whole thing. That's fine. I understand that.

Here's what I'm getting to.

By the middle of this week, I will either no longer be in any fed I share with Paul in the least, or I will pull my entire fed from the community so as not to be subjected to his garbage anyore at the most. These are my decisions to make, and it is my fed and my hard work to defend. It is also not intention to never be forced to submit to the baseless accusations of someone who has the obvious desire to bring up his issues with me and my fed wherever and whenever possible.

Maybe...there is a way for someone else to resolve this to my satisfaction, but regardless I will be making a decision soon.

Like I said, sometimes enough is enough and sometime a line must be drawn.

This is mine.