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New Design Theory Blog!

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jonydude
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Joined: 01/29/2015

I'm looking to fill this blog with guest articles, interviews and any other good content I can find. Guest articles can't be flat out advertisements for something, but if a link to a current Kick Starter post illustrates a vital piece of game design wisdom, so be it.

Also, it needs readers, and followers. The more people reading, the more motivated I will be to continue updating daily, and the easier it will be to hunt down interviews with the true greats.

What Makes Games Good? | Discussing the Fundamentals of Game Design
https://whatmakesgamesgood.wordpress.com/

Dagar
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Joined: 01/23/2015
Hey, I'm new here as well,

Hey,

I'm new here as well, but from what I've read (e.g. here) you likely won't find anyone just filling your blog with content for you. You could maybe just start discussions here and use their outcome as basis for your blog.

It is, as far as I've experienced, in general not good to begin contact by demanding contribution by others. Maybe, instead you could begin by offering information and fruitful discussion to the members here.

jonydude
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Joined: 01/29/2015
Demanding? That's a bit

Demanding? That's a bit harsh. Have we really reached the point where there is no difference between demands and requests? I promise, no hostages will be harmed if no one submits anything. It's okay. You are all safe. Even if I could harm non submitters in some way, I am a very generous forgiving sort.

Yes, I could offer fruitful discussion here, but I'll pass. My blog is open, and my discussion there can be extremely fruitful. Any means of contact through my blog and I will personally see to it that you shall have a deep and profound insight into whatever problem you brought to me. I even routinely browse through other Wordpress blogs to see how I can be of assistance. But doing that here? With people who don't even have a Wordpress account? No thanks. Making a blog entry a day plus living a normal life is taxing enough as it is. I need to be selective with how I spend my time.

Soulfinger
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Joined: 01/06/2015
Dagar wrote:Hey, I'm new here

Dagar wrote:
Hey,

I'm new here as well, but from what I've read (e.g. here) you likely won't find anyone just filling your blog with content for you. You could maybe just start discussions here and use their outcome as basis for your blog.

It is, as far as I've experienced, in general not good to begin contact by demanding contribution by others. Maybe, instead you could begin by offering information and fruitful discussion to the members here.

There are different expectations with a blog. It is an informal, amateur market that is typically a soapbox for the author's ideas or opinions -- kind of like FOX news. This kind of shout out is perhaps naive but different from the arrogance of suggesting a writer should do high end work for free just for the exposure, as in the post you linked to.

That said, people's cats have their own blogs these days, so why would anyone generate content for someone else when they can do it on their own site? Added to that, the pitch is essentially saying, "I'll post any old crap you want to write, and I also need people who want to read that crap, because I have no audience," which doesn't inspire confidence. What are the bloggers credentials? The magazine guy you linked to does have those. One thing I can say is that you don't need followers to score an interview. Scoring the interview can get you the followers, and it fulfills step one of the DENNIS system. For example, were I to tell you the story about the day Gary Gygax invited my friend and me out to a strip club that would not only be an interesting post but it would establish some credibility for me as an author as having some inside track in the gaming market.

Dagar
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Joined: 01/23/2015
Hey jonydude, I'm no native

Hey jonydude,

I'm no native english speaker, so please forgive the unlucky way of expressing myself. I tend to write the words that first come to my mind, not often thinking about alternatives that capture what I wanted to say better. Of course you did not demand anything.

So please clarify for me what exactly you are offering. To me it seemed that you look for experienced game designers who would use your blog to talk about their knowledge on certain aspects of game design. For me a blog is more of a personal statement toward the topic than an offer for discussions - in my experience, this is better achieved in forums.

jonydude
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Joined: 01/29/2015
Well, the blog has got one

Well, the blog has got one guest writer so far. Some random guy I met online. I know you're all confused about why anyone would do this, and to be perfectly honest, so am I. I'm not entirely sure I know why he's contributing to my blog, or even why I'm contributing to my blog for that matter.

Yes, I implied a very small audience, and I did so intentionally. I am a very honest and open person by nature, and it has a history of getting me into trouble. This blog is so much in its infancy that you could argue it hadn't even been born yet.

Keeping it alive is a daily chore, and every day I can never think of more than two things worth writing about. It reminds me of a marathon I participated in where I managed to resume walking in spite of being in all sorts of pain, constantly wondering how many more steps my body has in me.

Still, keeping it up one day at a time, I've managed to get a humble following, which has spurred me on to keep posting.

I really could use followers a lot more than I could use articles, so if you're only willing to do one of those two things, hit follow.

Comparing blogs to magazines, yes my standards are somewhat lower than your average magazine editors. Another thing about blogs is they're timeless. All the big bloggers may have thousands of views within minutes of publishing an article, but they also have many more views long after the fact.

My blog is still small now, but if it does grow, a large percentage of new readers will read every archived article since forever. If my blog is linked to your blog, it allows both our blogs to grow indefinitely.

Everything you do, do at your own risk. If writing a few paragraphs of text for people online to read is a tortuous and daunting task for you, requiring high levels of financial compensation, I get that. We've all been there. Writing a blog is an inappropriate thing to do when faced with those circumstances.

There is of course exposure and all that, but working for exposure is just a naive way of saying "volunteer". Exposure is always less valuable than you think it will be, so if that is the sole reason you're writing an article, you should probably instead devote that time to looking for part time work, as the latter is far more likely to pay off.

However, if you have a fun, interesting and useful piece of advice to share with game designers everywhere, the fact that you haven't written an article about it just may be eating you up inside.

The act of writing your advice down helps you see where you're not living up to it, and the process of taking your own advice will leave you a richer designer.

Also, the social nature of blogs means random people may challenge you on your advice, forcing you to assess it from new angles.

The interesting thing I found about the thread linked to, is this commenter wrote something very interesting on this site explaining why he refuses to write something interesting on this site unless he is financially reimbursed. Did anyone pay him to explain himself and remain in the conversation like that?

I think the important thing to reassure you all with is that I'm not making any money out of this blog, so don't feel I'm making a profit off of your hard work without paying royalties. I think the best thing I can really offer is simply the fun of it.

Dagar
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Joined: 01/23/2015
I understand what you are up

I understand what you are up to and admire your effort. The thing is: There are new game designers that are working on their first project(s) as a hobby. These won't likely write for you because they feel they do not have enough experience to give tips to others.
There are idesigners that have multiple games out there, some of which might be quite the success. They likely won't write for you because they have their own blogs and little time to write on your blog additionally.

So, what you are looking for are the few designers that have experience, but not much exposure yet. While I will not say there are none out there, every wannabe-designer learns that he needs his crowd of followers for his work to bring fruits. Maybe there are such introwverts out there. But then you might want to think about what you can do to make them come out of the closet with what they have to say.

Maybe they think they have bad grammar or a bad expresssiveness. You could offer to control read their texts and publish them.
You could offer to give them a (written) interview (which you might want to write from recording) about their current project so they get to tell about their work.

I find your idea and your effort as such good and hope you find some authors. For myself, I could offer you to someday copy an episode of my blog, if both of us see it fit for your format. As of now it totally lacks structure. I talk about what thoughts I have in the design process, where they came from and how I feel about them. Compared to the established blogs out there, it is a mess.

So, good luck on your search!

Dagar

jonydude
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Joined: 01/29/2015
As for that link posted

As for that link posted earlier, look at it now. I posted my opinion of that offer. *shudders* I've at least got 8 posts, 4 followers, and 142 views. A very humble boast, I thought, but the guy you showed has 0 posts, 0 followers and 0 views. He also charges people money to read it.

I told him to get back to me once ten people have read his journal.

Here I was worried I have little to offer, this guy has NOTHING!

Soulfinger
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Joined: 01/06/2015
jonydude wrote:As for that

jonydude wrote:
As for that link posted earlier, look at it now. I posted my opinion of that offer. *shudders* I've at least got 8 posts, 4 followers, and 142 views. A very humble boast, I thought, but the guy you showed has 0 posts, 0 followers and 0 views. He also charges people money to read it.

I told him to get back to me once ten people have read his journal.

Here I was worried I have little to offer, this guy has NOTHING!

They haven't published their inaugural issue though. They will have a small readership once it goes to print. Being a trade journal, circulation will inevitably be low. However, there is a pecking order to publishing credentials. Foremost is getting paid. If you've been paid for something then you can start to consider yourself a professional, particularly if its pro rates in a pro grade publication.

Next up is print. Even if you don't get any money for it, being in print counts for something. I'm busting that guys balls because he is requesting high grade technical writing without even offering a contributor copy as compensation. However, an article in a print publication is worth a hundred blog posts in terms of a professional resume. That's changed some in recent years, as popular blogs have taken on some respectability. If you run a majorly popular blog then that can lead to opportunities. However, online publishing still has the same stigma as being stuff the author couldn't find a market for elsewhere.

jonydude wrote:
The interesting thing I found about the thread linked to, is this commenter wrote something very interesting on this site explaining why he refuses to write something interesting on this site unless he is financially reimbursed. Did anyone pay him to explain himself and remain in the conversation like that?

I think you misinterpreted my post. Doctors enjoy talking shop, but they want to be reimbursed for their professional medical advice. Similar thing. This is the hobby side of my job. I enjoy discussing it here, as it is a good distraction when I'm not caring for my chronically ill wife and medically fragile daughter (who have taken the place of my career). I'm just writing my opinions, and it doesn't matter to me if they go unread. When I have so much as a couple hours to actually draft up coherent work, I need to focus on stuff that will pay for the groceries that we are in chronically short supply of these days.

jonydude
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Joined: 01/29/2015
I see we're walking different

I see we're walking different paths here. I have no interest at all in building my resume. I'm more interested in building my blog. Wouldn't mind submitting an article if it means more people will read my blog, but hyperlinks don't work very will in print publication.

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