“Their literary posts are among the most substantive I’ve seen”
July 23, 2014
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Okay, that’s coming from our own publisher that’s got every incentive to plug us, but still. (Sort-of publisher, anyway. Site owner?) And as one commenter notes, the competition is light due to the pros thinking: Give it away for nothing? Are you nuts?! I’m still trying to wrap my head around that whole “literary” bit, though. Eh… seriously? You know, I was never the English major type. Should I go buy one of those corduroy jackets and put patches on the elbows so I look the part…?
But what about those pros, eh? I gotta say, I rarely see anything in the press that meets any sort of reasonable standard of competency for what I’d call game journalism. The Washington Post Volko Runke story was pretty good, though. Also, that recent story on Diplomacy was extremely well done. Most of the time, a lame content-free “features” style is used for these things and they’re tilted towards the mythical “Old Lady in Dubuque.” That recent Guardian article betrays the fact that the target audience is people that hate games in the first sentence. It’s idiotic.
So where does that leave us, really? Oh yeah. Basically uncontested. Tor.com has very comprehensive Appendix N series… but it’s very informal. And of course, I’m just building on the work of guys like James Maliszewski and Jeff Rients. But when I go check their posts to see if I’ve just repeated the same old stuff, I see that while they are often more insightful on a paragraph to paragraph basis, they tend to stop after five hundred words or so. I do think I’ve gone deeper than those guys in at least a couple of cases, which is pretty exciting: there’s still a lot of stuff here to uncover! (Me: “You mean… if I put forth the effort, I can actually create something…?”) So yeah, it’s really weird not just to be out in front of the community… to basically planning on being that way as a matter of routine. That’s just crazy!
Hey, maybe the muses will depart next week. Who knows? And looking around at guys that have done almost exactly the same type of posts that I’ve tried to do… I gotta say that this new guy Scooter and that Jeff Lasala guy at Tor.Com are waaaay more cogent than me. At some point I’ll want to take some time and really look at these other folks’ posts and try to figure what it is that they do that I don’t… but for the moment I’m mostly just trying to keep up with a punishing workload. But hey, Ira Glass already explained that bit.
Anyway, this week’s installment is here: RETROSPECTIVE: The High Crusade by Poul Anderson. Check it out!