With the coming of Mists of Pandaria are the new class Monk as well as the new race Pandaren. Nearly all races can be Monks(with the exception of Goblin and Worgen), and Pandaren can be Hunter, Mage, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warrior and of course, Monk. I intend to level several of each, though I haven't quite decided for sure which!
What I do know is that as soon as the expansion starts up on the morning of the 25th, I will be leveling an Undead Monk on my main realm(yeah for 11th slot!). I know that it will be impossible to get realm first, seeing as how they are allowing "raf"-"refer a friends" to level to 80 instantly to be eligible for the achievement. I didn't expect to be able to even compete with anyone else, as I have things to do like take my kid to and from school and ya know, sleep. I am going to level mine as quickly as possible though, well, just because. My Monk will not be my first level 90, but I will probably get him to at least 80-something before I start on my main Druid.
And boy have I prepared for my Monk. I went by several lists made for those who intend to race to realm first(or where going to before "raf"), and did a bit of studying different professions and items to see what else I could do for him. I am also going to be really using heirlooms for the first time. Well, I had tons of Darkmoon Faire tokens laying around and figured why the heck not-now that I have 90 levels to get through! I do not have access to the helm as my main guild is only level 12(still not bad for only 3 people!).
What follows is a rough list of the things I have gathered with some more notes at the end.
elixirs of agility, 1 stack of each level available(in all different versions)
elixirs of trolls blood or fort(or whichever guardian are available at each level)
healing potions(though I don't think I'll need them much)
heavy knothide armor kits
enchant minor run speed, stack
adventurers journals(for level 75-85)
weightstones, stack for each level available
delicate bloodstones, several just in case there are any sockets along the way
Gnomish Army Knife(for +10 to gathering)
Herbalists Gloves with Gatherer enchant(my Monk will be leveling with mining/herbalism)
Venerable Mass of McGowan -mace x2 w/agility enchant
Swift Hand of Justice -trinket x2
Stained Shadowcraft Spaulders
Stained Shadowcraft Tunic -w/stats enchant
Inherited Cape of the Black Baron -cloak w/stealth enchant
I have also collected a massive collection of BoE gear, mostly rare, to be sure my Monk has basically the best available gear at each level. Farming chests in every zone from Hillsbrad to Northrend as well as the rare mobs in Blasted Lands. As you can imagine, farming them means I have several hundred extras items that don't work for my Monk that are sitting waiting for others to come back when Mists is released and buy for their new Pandas of other classes! I also used my husband's leatherworker to craft some of the better items in each level such as the Helm of Fire, Barbaric Bracers and more.
Rings and necklaces-my jewelcrafter has made any best in slot items for leveling
Niffelvar Bearded Axe x2 with Mongoose enchants-these are by far better from levels 71-80.
I've managed to find a few of the items that are available to lower levels in each expansion(ie level 57-60 gear from Burning Crusade is much better than any items of those same level from Classic). They just aren't easy to farm and our realm never had any on the auction house for less than 500g(and I will NOT pay that!). The easiest ones to actually farm were from Blackrock Caverns by sending my Paladin to farm the trash in the first room over and over.
At this time, one week from the pre-patch and about one month from the expansion, I hope I've been able to get anything I might want/need for my new Monk. I will be leveling at least one Pandaren Monk, and at least one Gnome Monk and possibly several other Pandaren, all on other realms-but I have not prepared for them at all! Not a single thing. But that's okay because I do love leveling and after the rush on the first one, I will be quietly, slowly enjoying leveling the rest of them!