Posts by: Lucy Darling

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[#][F] Lucy Darling - 4/5/2017
Originally posted by Totentanz View Post

I see a whole lot of blame-shifting here that doesn't parse. If John and Holden are writing AND deving, the only roadblock to production of that content is OPP. Fortunately, OPP has been doing a bang-up job on producing finished content of late. Additionally, the MMM have shown several Exalted projects languishing in 2nd Draft for some time now. Regardless of how much they wrote, it's pretty clear they weren't producing the necessary content to move the line forward at a quality level that satisfied OPP, where other writers/developers have shown themselves able to do that. We have a multitude of examples of OPP moving PDF-only products from development through layout and onto drivethru in a matter of weeks/months. Clearly that didn't happen.

In terms of blaming the writers, which mysterious writers get to shoulder the delays, if not John, Holden, and yourself? I doubt it's Minton and Vance, given that OPP just entrusted them with the line, and they have produced more content (in the form of a preview) than Exalted has seen in nearly a year.. If writers get paid when they produce, and they weren't producing, John and Holden had plenty of opportunity to reassign tasks to those who did produce.

I don't say this to rag on John, Holden, or yourself. However, as long as these conversations have been going on, your posts do some combination of attacking people for being upset, justify any and all possible problems, and shift blame to others. None of that really holds water at this point. There are too many months of silence, too much condescension when the silence breaks, and too much non-delivery.
...why on earth do you think I exclude anyone from 'sometimes drafts suck'? Like, seriously, we all suck sometimes. That's why they are drafts*. Like the time I forgot a whole damn section of the outline in my write up and had to redraft my entire section to fit a really really crucial section into it. If someone read that draft it sure would have sucked because it didn't address Outcastes. That's not even addressing any specific quirks about my writing and grammar that come from having a vastly different educational and writing background to the rest of the team, and working in British English.

And *shrug* I am kinda confrontational right now, yeah. I make so secret about my bias, my friendship with the Devs, and my experience with the project. It doesn't mesh with yours, for a multitude of reasons, from the differences in bias to the very very different level of insight we have into the project as a whole.

*Holden has some of the cleanest drafts I have read in my time, but that comes at a cost too. I draft messy, and nonlinear, so even trying to match both of us on a timeline/schedule is difficult.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 4/5/2017
Originally posted by Guancyto View Post
It stems from a really fundamental, basic failure to ask, for five years, "hey bossman, how exactly are we determining how much I get paid for this?"


Hrm. I will admit that I was thinking of novel and short story writers rather than RPG writers. You write a steamer trunk full of unworkable copy and your editor mercifully cuts it down to a novel, you get paid for a novel, you know?

Interesting that it isn't necessarily so elsewhere.

(I guess I'm a little biased from having read the corebook leaks, where there was so much unworkable copy, rightly thrown into the fire, and going "wait, you wanted to get paid by the word for that? Uh, let me check the going rate on birdcage liner...")

Huh. Since I am talking from the point of view of novels, short stories, nonfic and so on (which is just stuff I have actual experience writing and publishing, not hearsay and imagination), I am here to tell you that you're ...a bit all over the place. Because novels aren't by the word for one thing - you write a novel you get paid for a novel, that's true. And the way it works currently is that all the work got frontloaded, so you're being paid after you do the work (at least at the beginning, for most people). Short stories are fuzzier - it is by the word but for a range, still mostly paid post-writing. And you just don't get in if the story sucks/doesn't meet the spec of the anthology (if your editor is any good anyway). If it needs editing it gets edited and you still get paid by the word. If you get contracted for work like this, hand some shit in past deadline, you might get a cut fee, you might not, your work might go through the wringer to get edited up, it might not, but if it is gonna get used you're gonna get paid. And you get a contract when you get signed on unless you've got a handshake deal. Nonfic depends on market - mags and newspaper have brutal brutal word counts and limits and will hack your stuff to pieces if necessary, longer form depends on market.

What doesn't happen is that you edit it, the cut stuff gets used elsewhere, and you don't get paid because it got cut and you got paid for the first 3000 not anything after. That's how you get sections that don't make sense. That's how you get references to bits that got cut elsewhere. That's how you get 'shit we didn't cover X in your write up can you add that in please' resulting in either everything being cut past the bone to fit word count, or writers not getting paid.

And it isn't so much 'determining how much' as, say, issuing a contract for the things you've agreed on because handshake deals don't suffice anymore. A contract isn't just about how much you get paid, it's things like other fees, protections, deadlines. Contingency plans, and so on.

Also talking from the POV of someone who has seen drafts, so the 'they haven't produced anything' is, to not put a finer point on it, bullshit. John and Holden were producing work, and we were planning stuff. It didn't make it to you, the consumer, but it was being made and being written. And some of it being shit is likely on the writer, which given the fact it is a team effort and you're reading drafts, that is unsurprising in the least. And the Devs are paid by the word that they have to work on which was part of throwing shit into the fire when it was bad, and wrangling writer ego/anxiety about it too.

(I mean, I am in the enviable position of having seen a bunch of the 'lost material' but hey, that's a perq of being mates with them, not about my writing)

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 4/4/2017
Originally posted by Guancyto View Post
Their 'grievances' are against something that's the industry standard, and has been for ages.

Seriously, they're pissed about what has happened to every writer with a publisher, ever.

It sounds fair and even-handed to say 'both sides have a point' but sometimes they really, really don't.
Not in my experience. Every other writing job I have worked on has gotten me contracts well before things were drafted, least of all published, for example. And when it was per word, but word count required changing, I was paid for the words I wrote not the number they estimated. And if I needed a new contract because situations changed I got it. If something changed mid-cycle I got notified. Even when the publishing house itself went through major restructuring I still got paid, still got contracts, still got communicated with.

Put it this way - a friend of mine edited a book that missed external deadlines so got canned. She still got paid. Her contract got reissued to reflect the changing circumstances and she got paid for the work she did.

I had a short story in a collection and after I signed my contract the publishing house changed streams and dropped the book while still publishing in the area. I did not get paid but all rights reverted to me and I can shop the story around wherever I want and they will not use my work, nor the editors work, nor outlines for other collections, or research that we did. Because their contract does not allow it and that shit is unethical. You pay by the word then all you get is the words and you best have a contract to support that before you start clawing in drafts.

And if you require the writers to do promotion/comms management, that ought to be reflected in the pay too. That is more of a wriggle point I will admit, in terms of promotion. Comms management is unique to rpgs I will admit but one hopes there are ... procedures for when your people are being stalked and harassed online, the way most businesses with internet facing comms should. That is a sore point for me I admit.

Admin makes or breaks a company. I still write with the people I write with, that bit was not really an issue. Admin though? I rolled with a lot of shit that doesn't fly elsewhere and most of my work is in academics where we aren't even frigging paid for the writing bit unless we have tenure.

Being paid late is pretty standard, I'll admit that.

RPG standards are not in any way akin to regular publishing in my experience, and without serious trust in the people I work with, it is an experiment I am unlikely to delve into again. I am just too organised and admin-centric to deal with the shenanigans, and I don't have any loyalty to a gameline to bolster dealing with that level of stuff at work.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 4/2/2017
Neither John nor Holden will be writing for Exalted in the foreseeable future.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 3/28/2017
Originally posted by Weimann View Post
I also hope they're still involved, as well as the other writers that have shown up (I'm really curious to see Lucy Darling's contribution, for example).
Sorry, I have pulled out of the project. Between one thing and another it wasn't personally sustainable as part of my freelance work.

Minton and Vance are top writers and are gonna do great work though!

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 3/23/2017
*raises an eyebrow*

Not a dev, didn't work on the Core and if you will note my sig, am no longer working on the line at all for personal reasons. I am posting as a fan, as part of the community (albeit one with specific experiences most of you don't have). So take your 'professionalism' and...well stick to it yourself.

You want to be able to rant and rave and make HILARIOUS jokes. The Devs stuck through as much of that as they could - look at John's last thread announcing the Backer Charms if you want an example of why 'post and run' doesn't work, and why 'ignore the negative' doesn't work. Not being here trudging through it means "woe is me the devs have abandoned us".

It is a difficult line to walk. Last time I posted about this I got snarked at for NOT providing evidence and now quoting someone is poor form? Make up your minds about what you want before you start slamming people for not reaching those heights.

Not to mention the indie devs on rpgnet are there, not here. The rules there are different, mod culture is different, and board culture is different. And you cannot ignore the weight of history - on both sides.

To sum up: Ex3 is alive and ongoing.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 3/23/2017
Originally posted by Dragonmystic View Post
Hah, I kinda hope we could get a mulligan on 3e mechanics.

Originally posted by Dragonmystic View Post

I know, but I can hope, yeah? (I know it's not going to happen.)

Oh no, the Devs don't come and talk to us enough!! The line is failing! Ignore the sales stats and the continuing work and the releases and the monday meeting notes and the fan activity, all that matters is what people say to me the individual! DOOM I TELL YOU!!

Yeah, I wonder why that is. Either this is a place you want the Devs to come and chat with you, or it's a place you can growl and complain to your heart's content without being remonstrated with by exhausted people who are SO completely over it.

(I mean, what exactly should one say to "I hate all the work you did over the past few years and dismiss it with a quip"? Apart from "bless your heart" obviously.)

(tbh I am much more of a fan of the bear who lost his hat's response of "...thank you anyway")

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/22/2017
Originally posted by Totentanz View Post

For the same reason you don't name all your PCs "Lucy", the ST doesn't call your PC's waiter at the Teahouse "Waiter Number 12,461," and the core book doesn't refer to the Scarlet Empress as Too Much Hairspray Lady.
OP didn't suggest everything had a mundane kind of name, thus 'dissonance'.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/21/2017
Originally posted by Chejop Kejak View Post
What threw me off, I think, was the mention of this as a characer who can be expected to engage in straightforward heroics - what I love about Perfect Soul is how that doesn't quite apply to her.
Straightforward heroic narrative - slightly different, but similar in some ways.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/21/2017
(Also, psst, Kyman infers something far more egregious than 'what Jenna is conveying through use of style' when he mistakes a repeated use of symbolism for attempting to ape Whedon's dialogue so Ghosthead is continuing the trend in a much more acceptable way that...well doesn't have all that much to do with Death of the Author in terms of literary critique? )

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/21/2017
Originally posted by kongurous View Post
The question, then, is do you want those choices to be in the first thing people will read in your book? This isn't polarizing based on the content of the story, but on the construction of it fundamentally, which is not an area in which I would want my first impression to be debatable.

Originally posted by HighPriest View Post
Yikes. Reading this for the first time makes me appreciate my long-standing policy of not reading fiction chapter breaks in RPG books.
These responses rather bely this intent:

Originally posted by Kyman201 View Post

That's why I was so adamant in my first post that this wasn't anything personal towards Jenna, and by extension I want to make it clear that I didn't want this to seem personal to anybody who enjoyed it. I just wanted to discuss it, openly, and compare different opinions.
Your posts insist your judgement on structure, grammar, atmosphere, and intent are correct. I am actually deeply uncomfortable with the thread so I will simply note the following:

: the intent of the magic pig is to be both magic and a pig. That is, a sign of the small magics that infest Creation, and a nice source of protein for dubiously made pork buns.

: you can dislike and get lost in a sentence all you want but it does not make it a badly crafted one, but Ghosthead has that covered.

: the Boar of Standing Water is probably less obvious to those who have not hung around farms but I imagine it is a combination of both the myth of filthy mud and the way that pigs are actually clean animals. The reappearance of porcine symbols can be read a multitude of ways but I take it to be a stylistic choice based on how Wu-Jian is structured as a culture and as a city (pork is a good protein in crowded environments when compared with beef, or even birds).

: Sabriye's references to food are not a poor attempt at Whedon (blech) but a constant reminder that this poverty laden guttersnipe has been ripped from her home by glory and then left to suffer it alone. These are the first people she has met like her. She doesn't want to kill them she wants to be friends, to have company. And she will try to do that, because that is the kind of person she is.

: this is about character not just history, even so Wu Jian is her home and she does not want to leave. This is the story of her realising this. Musing on herself as a Solar, and as a resident of Wu Jian.

: the intent is to show that Ex3 isn't just Big Damn Heroes. The narratives of the game are not the straigtforward tales of glory. Sure, Perfect Soul would have made a nice simple story but she isn't messy the way this story is. Any rpg can do simple heroics, so why start with the mundane?

The story, is not undeniably unstructured, or badly written, regardless of how sure one person's criticisms may be. As I said though, horribly uncomfortable (even though I didn't write any of those intro fics, I know most of the people who did) but wanted to note that the criticisms are not nearly as cut and dried as it seems.

(Also pls forgive typos amd weird words - on my phone since my laptop bricked and is in the shop)

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/21/2017
My OP hellcat buffed with everything Supernal Survival could throw at it was called 'Prickles'.

I don't mind dissonant naming obviously. Why make it a big deal?

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/20/2017
Originally posted by Stephen Lea Sheppard View Post
I think I love that story for all the reasons you hate it.
Same here. I tend not to come at fiction with my qualifications drawn like weapons either - for me the things I teach my students are for very specific situations and my aim is to get them to a point where breaking those rules is a conscious stylistic and creative choice. Moran is a writer I trust to have done that, so those 'errors' are deliberate choices.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/12/2017
Originally posted by diagrapher View Post

I'm glad some of the writers acknowledge that not every group has to play the same way. I've gotten the impression that a lot of the changes in 3rd edition were about consciously preventing styles of game the devs didn't like- "some storytellers made the characters' past incarnations a big part of the story, so ex3 won't mention them in the corebook at all", "some storytellers made the game all about saving the world from apocalypses so ex3 won't suggest any apocalypse scenarios, even explicitly-only-possible-if-the-storyteller-wants-it-to-be ones like the Reclamation", etc.
...I play with the Devs mate, I work with 'em and I write with 'em. That was not at all part of their 'motif' for game design.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/12/2017
...I can't believe I did it again. Honestly. Where is the Robot Devil when you need him?