Guys, I would have posted earlier but I've been very busy.
You see, I've discovered PvP.
I know, I know - please try to control your shock. I've always been a devout non-PvPer. Fear of the unknown had repressed me for years. (Actually, it wasn't the unknown - it was the inevitable LOLNOOB OMG U SUCK battleground chat and complete lack of any resilience)
So, with great trepidation and determination, I donned my few pieces of lolpvp gear that had been thrust upon me from VoA pugs, and nervously clicked the "Queue for Random Battleground" button. AND HOLY COW. PVP IS AWESOME.
I can't stop. I've done nothing but queue for battlegrounds since. I'm not eating, sleeping, or posting. I'm pwning hordies and jumping into Wintergrasp every chance I get.
So I would like to share with you some of the most important lessons I've learned in my recent Battleground Mania.
Always Always Always hit CTRL-S in the preparation area for Alterac Valley (and most battlegrounds actually). In a 40 main PvP group, there will always be rogues, and at least one of those rogues will always be an annoying flying-dagger spamming kid. Or a Path of Frost spamming DK.
You don't need to suck for everyone to know you're a noob when you go into a battleground. As soon as you get that achievement for An Honorable Kill! everyone will know.
I officially feel very bad for the Hordies on Lothar. They haven't had Wintergrasp since Wednesday. It's all because of me, I'm certain.
Arcane Torrent SUCKS. Jerks. As far as I'm concerned, the only Blood Elf I will ever like is Tamarind, and the rest of you emokids can keep your damn torrents to yourself!
Stoneform is a racial ability I alway found completely useless until battlegrounds. Now I use it just about every cooldown. Between that and Psychic Horror, I fear no rogues or warriors. LOLSTONED
Find something you're good at (or at least not terrified of), and just stick to it. If you're new to battlegrounds, just go stand at a tower and pretend you're defending it, when in reality you're looking at the map trying to figure out where the hell you are.
I still have not mastered the ability of picking up bombs.
I hate Warsong Gulch.
Even if you're a shadow priest... don't be afraid to heal. That's part of what I think makes shadow priests great in PvP. If I know I'm going to die, I just throw a Prayer of Mending on myself... at least it will still bounce after I'm dead.
When in doubt, just jump. A lot. It makes you look like you're actually good at this.
When I first decided to start jumping into PvP, I asked around: "How much resilience should I have before I start running battlegrounds?" The answer was usually a number around 1000. Since I only had about 100 resilience starting up, I felt incredibly timid joining in.
But thinking you need 1000 resilience to even start is ridiculous, as far as I'm concerned. In order to get enough PvP gear to have that kind of resilience, you're going to have to actually DO some PvP first. As long as you are prepared to die a lot, just jump in! Ignore people who are jerks in BG chat. I've found that lots of people are actually very encouraging, with compliments for successful defense tactics, gratitude for any healer around, and lots of cheers when there is a win.
And the game has come alive for me again. Though I've never really been gear or loot obsessed, there is a lot of fun involved in setting gear goals for yourself. And what's great about getting PvP gear is that you aren't directly competing with someone else for a specific item. There's no rolling against other priests, and the disappointment or arguments that come from someone losing the item. All the competition is focused on the battles themselves, really. Gearing yourself is a very independent endeavor - and I'm getting a kick out of it.
I bought two mounts in the beginning... and now I'm just buying more PvP gear with my honor. Oops.