Blog No 87
Adventure Worlds has been going strong for a year and a half now. I’m really proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish so far, and I’m excited for the things we are currently working on. We went from a group of friends to a writing group to a budding community with followers, regular submissions, and connections with other groups. This blog is coming along too. I’m still not sure where it’s going long term, but for now I’ve been able to hit the weekly deadline and send a lot of views Adventure Worlds way. I’d like to think I had a part in encouraging Christian to start his blog too. To top it off, we’ve now been in two local publications. Also, I may have mentioned a couple of times now, we are getting close to having our first book done and our Zine is a week away from being printed. (That’s not including Christian’s book which should be out next month).
We’ve come a long way so far. Even our writing, and how we write, has improved in a great leap. (Keeping in mind, we know we still have a long way to go). What I’m most excited about in my own writing is an eagerness to delete (or disregard when my constitution isn’t high enough that day) whole pages of writing in favour of the opportunity to write something better. It’s like climbing back down a mountain to see if there’s a better (harder) route to take. It’s exciting and a bit risky rather than nerve shattering and fear inducing like it was a year ago.
But now I come to the point of this week’s blog. As much progress as we’ve made, as many followers and views the website has, all the positive encouragement, community involvement, improved writing, means nothing compared to having a physical object. The Zine is far enough along that we’ve been able to print off a few test copies (to make sure the layout works and everything is readable, etc). We’ve gotten more attention and offers of assistance with that unfinished photocopied booklet than from anything we’ve done on Adventure Worlds (including the cards we’ve been handing out which is ironically a physical object, though representative of a digital place). Really the Zine is just a more awkward and informative version of the card.
I don’t want to overlook the support we’ve received so far. I don’t think any of us would still be working on Adventure Worlds if we didn’t get the encouragement and interest that it’s garnered. I think some of us would still be writing, but the dynamic and fervor would be different. I just find it odd that the progress made with Adventure Worlds so far has less weight than a little, folded, black and white booklet. I suppose there is some psychological reason behind it, but I don’t know nearly enough about that stuff to wager a guess. It could be that the Zine is just that much more progress (or a show of commitment) that manages to persuade more people that we really mean business. There is a different kind of excitement though. Giving someone a card or even standing by as they open the site on their phone (or tablet or whatever) got the same kind of enthusiasm as a tired parent gives a kid over a Lego creation. It was almost patronizing in a way. (Not to say that’s how everyone reacts).
With the unfinished Zine, it’s more like handing over the report card with that A to show how hard you’ve been studying. The people standing just on the other side of the door can better visualize how they can get into the party. Or maybe it’s just a cool object that those creative people want to have. We tend to hang out with an artistic crowd (especially with the groups we try to frequent) and it may represent the kind of simple but effective object that appeals to the same sort of illusionary underground culture they wish to inhabit. It’s a golden ticket to Wonka’s factory, but we’re all too clever to get caught in his traps. Maybe it’s just a physical object that they can hold and thumb through and digital media hasn’t gotten quite as far as digital media would have you believe. Just wait until we have real books to show off.