I didn't make it!
Hunters in world of warcraft are often the defenders of the group they are with. Being an expert in long range weapons, the Hunter is great at pulling foes towards their group to ambush. The Hunter is in charge of watching over the group, warning them of incoming foe's and keeping the group out of harms way. The Hunters lack of self healing abilities are countered by their regular avoidance of hand to hand combat in group play.
Since the Hunter does not partake in melee combat they do not need to keep as much healing potions in their inventory therfore others might ask you to hold things for them. Don't think that the Hunter just cowards in the back of a group. The Hunter is the long range weapon expert and is the only character that can rapidly fire long range weapons using the Auto Shot skill. Being able to tame the wild creatures of world of warcraft to fight with the Hunter is a great help to the Hunter when they have to leave the group and play solo.
The Hunter can be a challenging character to play in the beginning but it is a very powerful class that is easy to level up and considered to be very valuable to any group when played correctly.
Lets look at some traits of the available Hunter races: When playing a Hunter, race selection is very important as which race you choose will determine how you will have to play your character. Although race selection is very important, deciding on Alliance or Horde is not as both work very well as a Hunter. If you are a Hunter for the Alliance, you may be a dwarf or night elf (draenei if you have the Burning Crusade expansion). I personally prefer dwarves as Alliance hunters because of their Gun specialization and Stoneform spell but that certainly doe's not mean dwarves are the only good Hunters. The night elf has the Shadowmeld and Prowl talents which are obvious advantages to being a hunter. The night elf is considered by many to be the most effective alliance side hunter. The draenei race has Heroic Presence and Gift of the Naaru which adds bonus to the hunter and the hunters pets along with healing properties. If your for the horde a Hunter is also a great character to play. Trolls are very good Hunters with their Bow Specialization and DPS bonus using Berserker. The trolls are very well rounded Hunters as they also have a damage bonus to beasts using Beast Slaying. The so called icing on the cake for the troll is that they can restore health using Regeneration. Using the taurens Warstomp skill the Hunter is able to detain its foe's without going hand to hand with them. Orc's bring a 5% damage bonus to the Hunter's pets using the Command ability and can diminish an enemies stun attack effects by 15% using its' Hardness talent. Finally if you have the Burning Crusade expansion you may choose the blood elf as a Hunter using Arcane Torrent as an effective strike against enemy casters and it also is a fast way to replenish the Hunters mana. In the beginning you won't be a super-warrior so don't try to play like one. For the first several levels simply get a feel of your character and what you are able to do with it. Letting your character die will only equal time wasted so back away from battle when the going gets tough. Use range weapons and spells to keep your character out of harms way. Being on a quest at all times will help your character get better items and make leveling up easier. Before moving to a new region check that you have completed every quest where you are now, this will help in leveling your character up.