I Have a Column at Castalia House Now…
June 11, 2014
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My first post at Castalia House went up on Monday:
REVIEW: Fate of the Kinunir by Robert E. Vardeman
While my personal blog here has grown considerably in the past year or so, writing at this new location will give me an opportunity to reach a much larger and more diverse audience. I see that as being good for both the hobby and for me as a writer. At the very least, the exercise will get me out of the echo chamber of my own making. You see, I’ve spent the past ten years struggling to become both comprehensible and relevant to people that have a passion for classic games. So when this last review went out, I wasn’t terribly surprised when I got feedback from a Traveller fan that looked like this:
I had an Imperial Marine with Cutlass-3. I thought it was pretty worthless till I found myself on a world with an exotic atmosphere behind three pirates marching along in space suits. So yeah, more swordplay in Traveller, please! Seriously excellent lampshading there and a nice review.
Do you have any idea how hard it is to write for hard core Traveller fans? It’s tough! But here’s the response I got from a non-gaming science fiction fan:
I’m disappointed that the first paragraphs in Johnson’s review forced me to wonder “What the heck is he talking about?” He needed more editorial direction. However, it’s great to see Vardeman’s working getting some attention.
Ouch! The funny thing about this… I was specifically trying to communicate to an audience that had no familiarity with Traveller. I thought I was bending over backwards to accommodate those people… but I was completely failing to connect, convey, and inform. No, I just sounded like this to them: “bar bar bar bar bar bar bar.” Doh!
Although I have my work cut out for me, this is exactly the sort of thing I was signing up for. While I expect the next few weeks to have its ups and downs as I attempt to acclimate to the new venue, I would of course be pleased if my regular readers from here could follow along with me there. Thanks for your support so far. If this new thing turns out not to be your thing, I understand. But something tells me that a stint as a small fish in a big pond is exactly where I need to be right now as long as I can swing it….
Cheers, tally ho, and all that….