Going to try to keep this simple. Hopefully I can remember my other questions too.
1. Do power scrolls and guard scrolls (ie: from quest rewards, the loot box) sell? I've been trying to watch the auction house, but I can't tell if players are actually buying them, or if the listings expire.
2. About gemcrafting. I currently have the STR gem unlocked. But then I look at the window... In order to produce a STR gem, I need another STR gem? How on Earth does that work out?!
If I have to find and buy a STR gem to use to produce a STR gem... That doesn't make much sense, it's a loss of money and makes it look like gemcrafting isn't worth it.
I can't help you with the first question, but I think I get what you're saying about gemcrafting.
In order to make a level 4 gem, you need the level 3 version of the same type. To make the level 3, you need the level 2, and to make the level 2, you need the level 1.
The level 1 gem just takes white and green mining materials plus a little extra depending on what kind of gem you're making. Levels 1 and 2 of a gem will always be 100% craft chance, but at levels 3 and 4, it's 84% success with a Master Alchemist.
When you have a stat gem, it will only provide a bonus to core stats: Str, Agi, Int, Wis, and Lck. When you modify it with a racial skill, you add another bonus onto that gem such as Crit Rate, M-Crit Rate, M-Crit Dmg, G-heal, Accuracy, Block, or more of the same core stat.