[Guest Post] Tools and Equipment for Dice Castle Adventure

My second installment in the Adventure to Dice Castle went live on Geeks Dream Girl recently. It’s dubbed Tools and Equipment: Adventure to Dice Castle.

Here’s one of the items I recommend:

8. Business Cards – You can find inexpensive business cards almost anywhere for first time buyers or through special deals. I wouldn’t order a lot of them right off the bat, but having a business card is definitely better than not having one. When you give them out, try to get the business card of the person you’re networking with. — SOURCE: Tools and Equipment: Adventure to Dice Castle

I really love writing this series because it’s giving me the chance to put freelance writing for the hobby games industry in a fun context. While today’s post is less of a parody than the one I’ll write for next month, it’s necessary in the sense that there are tools you’ll need to write, play and design hobby games.

‘Til next time!

[Guest Post] On Why Marketing Plans Fail

While I was at GenCon, I published an article over at the How To Write Shop that addresses why marketing tactics and plans fail.

Over the past, few years I’ve talked to a lot of authors experimenting with marketing using tools like: blogs, newsletters, social media, direct mailers and bookmarks, convention appearances, etc. When something doesn’t work? They abandon it. Sadly, some of the tools they’re leaving behind have real, tangible value. Newsletters, for example, take a long time to build but have a potential financial reward that can be directly correlated to its design and content. — SOURCE: The Number One Reason Why Marketing Tactics Fail

This article is tightly focused and was written with authors and game designers in mind. I know many, many people who do their own marketing, so I hope you’ll check it out.

Announcing Strange, Dead Love for Vampire the Requiem

At GenCon: Indy, White Wolf 2011-2012 release schedule was announced. One of the projects on the list is a supplement for Vampire: the Requiem entitled Strange, Dead Love.

I’m happy to share with you that I’m one of the writers! The project is developed by Russ Bailey with co-developer Eddy Webb. Jess Hartley and Filamena Hill will be penning the other sections of this romantically-inclined supplement. Filamena will be coordinating podcast promotion for White Wolf bloggers, so please keep that in mind.

Here’s a little more about the product in Russ’s own words:

Strange, Dead Love will be available in PDF and digital print first, via our partners at DriveThruRPG. It will not be a standalone book; there just wasn’t room in the schedule to do a new Vampire core. However, it should be fairly playable with one of our quickstarts.

This is definitely a book for people who like vampire romance. We’re talking more epic emotions and dark action than the usual Requiem blood and asphalt. We’re focusing on being true to genre, much as we did with the two Mirrors sci-fi books. — Russ Bailey on Google+

To be blunt: I am thrilled to be on this project because this is a subject matter I’m familiar with. For the last, few years I’ve been going to a romance writer’s group where many talented people have been diving in and really educating everyone on the subject. It has been a great experience because they talked about things I never would have thought about. How relationships need to be plotted out. How there’s a difference between writing about sex and establishing intimacy. How there’s more than one emotion in any romance.

There’s been some mention of Twilight and similarly-themed properties in player discussions. I can tell you that this is not a book about Twilight, this is a book about vampire romance. Twilight is one type of romance — and it’s not for everyone. Believe me, there are many flavors. Kind of like ice cream, only…

Well, you get the idea.

Please, please do NOT hold me to any specifics. This project is in development.

Post GenCon Wrap-Up and Silly Happy Updates

GenCon 2011 was a lot of work. Prior to the show, Matt and I were dodging bullets and putting in extra hours for the first DriveThruRPG partnership with White Wolf Publishing and select games from Malhavoc Press, Open Design, Nocturnal, Eden Studios and Abstract Nova.

Even with the booth location at the back of a very large and very huge hall… This venture was a runaway hit. The quality of the new books is really awesome. And the fans? The ones who practically wept with joy seeing Vampire: the Masquerade back in print? Or how about the guy that seriously demanded to know when his copy of the twentieth anniversary edition will be sitting in his mailbox because he loves that game so much.

Besides the already scheduled signings, Jim Zubkavich offered to sign the Exalted comic, Greg Stolze was happy to drop off signed excerpts of his Vampire: the Requiem novel, A Hunger Like Fire, and Jason Vey took time to sign All Flesh Must be Eaten books with me from Eden Studios.

Oh, and did I mention we sold out of Ptolus on Saturday morning?

The booth’s success was due to the efforts of the fine people working the booth. Chuck, Mike, Pauline, Sean, Matt, Steve, Corinne, Ken, Steve, Luke, Carol and myself. We came, we sweated, we had meetings, we ate, we sweated some more…

I had a ridiculously busy schedule, but had some help getting through it with my friend Jack Daniels. By the time Monday rolled around, I was “deep fried” and happy to be home.

However…

DOM DOM DOM…

All that squeezing and pushing and cracking heads prior to the show leaves me with? NO STRESS. NO DRAMA. I have forward momentum on many irons in the fire that I’ve been developing for some time.

And some new ones, too! Which are… awesome… In many ways… Of course, probably the best update I have is that we’re scheduling a vacation. Well, that and the awesome, awesome meetings I had. All of which went swimmingly well.

Hee.

More updates and news will be released as it happens. I’m happy to be focusing on the creative aspects of my work, my jewelry design and my art and thrilled I’m working with such excellent and admirable hobbits people.

Life, quite frankly, is made out of awesome. Although my fridge is a little… Well… empty

Author Signing at GenCon: Indy

I have an author signing! Sadly, there won’t be any cake, but there will be shiny new brochures and some promo cards for The Queen of Crows with artwork by illustrator Leanne Buckley.

I’ve got something else planned, too, but time is running short. I’m hoping to finish a scrapbook filled with photos and more information about my work. If it’s not done in time, then you’ll just have to wait until the next show. Sounds like I’ll have a couple of my books and games on hand, too.

    GenCon: Indy Author’s Alley Signing
    3:00 to 4:00 p.m. Friday, August 5th
    Be there or get a -200 on your next roll

Truthfully, I’m still working on the whole “Hey, how can I inform people about my work without sounding like a complete diva?” angle, which is why I like doing these things. I’m expecting attendance to be hit-or-miss, as it usually is when I share a spot with the Guest-of-Honor. This year’s honorable author is Anton Strout.

The line will form on the left and the right. A part of me wishes we could be like those door knockers from the Labyrinth. Of course, I would be the one that only told the truth…

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