I think I've settled on a combination of binds and macros to help address my issues with ISS uptime. It's not perfect, mostly because changing aspects is still affected by the GCD, even if it doesn't cause a GCD. This is mostly an issue because I frequently want to swap to fox right after using an instant like chimera or arcane, and if I hit it too fast I don't actually change aspects. Nonetheless, I've spent a fair amount of time practicing on target dummies, and I think I've got a pretty good system.
The important thing for me to find out was that, in a macro, putting an exclamation mark before the name of an aspect in a macro means you don't cancel your own macro, which allowed me to macro hawk to my instant casts. This in turn meant that I didn't have to worry about losing the AotH bonus on my instants. Hooray! So if you're curious, chimera and arcane shot now have macros that look like this:
/cast !aspect of the hawk
/cast chimera shot
As far as I know you can't macro aimed shot because of the MMM talent: if you have AiS macroed, you'll end up always hardcasting AiS instead of actually using up the buff and firing a free, instant one. I've got fox manually bound to my middle mouse button, and hawk is bound to ctrl-middle button just in case. Not having AiS macroed isn't a problem because I can always use chimera or arcane first.
Overall, I think this should help me improve my DPS quite a bit, which will help kill new bosses in the Firelands. Hooray!
I've been pugging a lot of raids on my alts, mostly my priest. It's driving me a little bit nuts, because there are a lot of really nice, pretty decent people on my server, and we're all in lots of separate little guilds, all trying to recruit from the barely existent pool of raiders available on a backwater RP server. We all have enough people that trying to merge wouldn't work very well, and anyway I like the way my guild is doing things. I like that the principal function of the gbank is "helping raiders". I like that officers aren't especially more important than members. I like the loot system we're using. I don't want to give those things up - and I'm sure the other little guilds don't want to give up what they've got!
And yet, I want to be friends and play more regularly with some of the people I've met pugging. The best I've been able to think of has been friends-listing the people that I play with, continuing to pug with them, and if VA has open spots on any given night I ask them first. Not perfect, but it's a step.