Actually, soaking wood DOES do something, and it's NOT good. The desirable smoke is referred to as sweet blue, or thin blue, but it's the result of a hot clean-burning fire. Putting wet or even damp wood on a fire has the effect of smoldering the fire and produces billowy white and sometimes even black smoke. Either way, billowy smoke is BAD, as it imparts a every bitter and some say oversmoked flavor on the meat. Plus, your meat turns black.
Small amounts of very dry (and warm if you can get it) wood works best.
Hance - Lake Dogs Cooking Team - MiM/MBN/GBA CBJ and comp cook
Lake Sinclair, GA (strategically about an hour from darn near anywhere)
Started competing in chili cookoffs back in the 1990's and have competed in more than I care to count. I became a CBJ in MiM in 2005, then MBN and in GBA in 2010. I've probably judged 130+- BBQ comps (sanctioned and unsanctioned) over this time. That said, I really enjoy competing more than I enjoy judging, and hope to get back to doing 4 or 5 a year in the near future.