Month: September 2014

My KS project funded. Feeling emotional.

I’m honestly flabbergasted. At least, I think I am. I think I’m happy. Excited. Overwhelmed?

Not overwhelmed, I don’t think.

I’m not so full of emotion that I’m unable to function. Just… a little emotionally full.

I’m going to upload a new P&P today, then set aside the game as much as possible for a few days. At some stage between now and Sunday, I’ll develop the 3 potential ideas for the ‘spare 26 cards’ since there are playtest meetings on Sunday & Monday. But I think I need at least a couple of solid days ‘break’ from In a Bind.

I’m actually excited to be thinking about other gaming ideas, without feeling guilty that I should be spending 100% of my time on a single thing. Multitasking is far healthier. Balance is required, specially when it comes to creativity.

I’m also excited to get stuck into doing all the artwork, learning about the technical side of things, sorting out logistics, getting feedback off folk relating to a product that they’re now ACTUALLY GOING TO DEFINITELY GET.

That’s pretty cool. I could almost cry.

Specially the way it happened, with all the outpouring of support over the last day, getting 1/3 of the funds in 1/59 of the campaign time. It seemed virtually impossible but it happened.

I’m amazed. Definitely amazed.

I need to keep going and genuinely try my hardest.

This morning, my main focus is on my KS.

Part of me, interestingly, just wants to throw it all in.

There’s a glimmer of hope. I mean, 4 backers/hour is within the realms of possibility. But given the rest of the campaign and the relatively low number of backers I have to share the project with their friends, the possibility seems too low to consider.

Accepting that it’s not funded, at least I have some peace. I can move on, think about how to proceed (with a publisher or doing a 2nd KS myself). I can start thinking about other things without feeling guilty that I should be focusing 100% on this project.

Oh, how I’d like to just get back to working on one of the other ideas I have. I know that this isn’t my only good idea. But will my execution of a simple eurogame be up to par? I believe so, but I’d like to prove it to myself.

And yet I see friends sharing my link, and backers who have supported me and I know that to just step away from the computer for a few hours would be doing them a disservice.

Yet, what can I do? Previous attempts to garner attention have failed. I’ve put together the final video. It seems futile.

But with the hope, there’s that fear of failure.

Failure when there was no other option doesn’t sting. Failure against insurmountable odds is not failure. Failure in quality when you focus exclusively on quantity (for brainstorming or other creative challenges) isn’t true failure.

But this is something I had a chance to do and I’ve got to let the campaign finish, e-mail some more folk and see what happens. Throwing in the towel is a way for me to laugh and say, “Haha – I didn’t really fail. I chose to do this.” But that’s not true. It wasn’t true when I stopped attending classes at uni and it wasn’t true when I basically declined to submit work.

Maybe it wasn’t even fear of failure that stopped me from taking that final step. In some cases, I had work that I’d done and simply declined to submit.

Maybe it was fear of being judged. Or of failure being out of my control.

I don’t know. I wish I could analyse even my own brain perfectly. That’d probably be more than anyone.

I’m just hypothesising.

Regardless, it’s something that I need to change.

Give it my all. Do my best. Until the end. It’s hard to keep going when the odds are against you but giving up isn’t the answer.

Sadness mainly relating to KS and lack of money.

I’m feeling a bit shit.

I wanted this blog to be part of a morning ritual. But just as some people become religious only in times of upset, so too have I approached this blog to vent in my time of need.

First, let me remind myself that life is not all bad. The population density in London. Some folk believe in my game. I (sort of) had sex last night. These are all good things that I might explore later.

But now she’s gone. And I see my purpose in life as gaining backers for my project.

I put my game onto Kickstarter over a month ago. My plan was always to spend the first month soliciting reviews, improving the page, doing art and videos, then spend the 2nd month just shouting about it and gaining backers.

It’s just a lot more work, emotionally, than I realised. Folk talk about how much work it is. That’s debatable. I can’t tell because I don’t know if I’m doing enough work to make a successful project.

What I do know is that it’s been slightly depressing at times. To hope for your next backer. To offer rewards that no-one has interest in. These are trivial matters and it’s certainly a bunch of 1st world problems. I think that part of my issue is that having invested so much time and emotion into this project, a lack of uptake suggests a failing and a lack of worth in me. I would do well to ignore numbers and just try things as best I can and see what happens. I wish I could be that logical and need to remind myself that worst case scenario I can cancel.

Repeat to self many times. If I fail, it does not mean I am a failure. I can try again.

I worry though – in doing this project, I hoped to actually learn something. I have learned practically nothing of use. What were my surprises?

That I found myself far more emotionally invested than rational.

That even though people have pledged money, only about 5% of them will take the time to join a FB group to help you out. That was a really big surprise. I know not many folk use FB, but those that do – I thought – would be invested enough to click 2 buttons, given that they had pledged money.

That soliciting reviews is hard. Most reviewers won’t even write back to you. Nearly all of the remainder will just say that they don’t review KS games until they’re actually published.

I honestly don’t know if a 2nd attempt would be successful and so I still feel like a failure.

Also, having lost my job and having no money whatsoever coming in is a real concern. I have enough to survive for another 3 months but after that I don’t know. I try to ignore the issue but that’s probably the worst response. And yet, it’s what I’ve always done. I need to break that pattern.

I probably need to break a lot of patterns.

Momentum

There’s a lot to be said for habit.

For routine.

It’s a powerful thing that can provoke a vicious spiral or a virtuous circle.

I go to work each day, getting up at 5.30am, and it slowly becomes easier. I learn to go to bed on time. Discipline is also like a muscle. As we use it more and more, I understand that it becomes ‘stronger’. By resisting the call of the bar of chocolate and not buying a pack of crisps, I might strengthen my ability to keep working and brush out other distractions.

It’s easy to let the mind wander. Focus. Focus. That’s the key.

There are a lot of ‘tricks’ – a healthy body can lead to a healthier mind. Doing some exercise in the morning. Clearing the desk is supposed to work well.

But maybe what the exercise does is give you that first step into beginning your momentum.

I’m certainly aware that my life has been in cycles of low and high productivity. Once I’m actually doing stuff, it’s not hard to keep going for a while.

I just need to work to first gather momentum.

These are some of the things that I am thankful for:

I have enough money to survive. Ultimately, my basic needs of food and shelter are taken care of. I am able to focus on emotional fulfilment, developing myself, being creative and meeting people.

In London, there are many opportunities to do things for free. There’s LoB meeting nearly every day. Groups. In 2 short years, I’ve met folk who I can have over sometimes and can share activities with.

I have a pole. A brass x-pole. It’s definitely my most treasured possession after my PC. I can train on it.

There is a library nearby with all sorts of interesting books to read.

I get on well with my landlord/flatmate and flatmate.

I have a healthy body and am able to walk, dance, sing and express myself through physical movement. My body isn’t just a container for my mind. I consider it to be part of me. It’s allowing me to type these words. It lets me play games.

Speaking of which, I have no allergies or physical problems. I can eat anything and enjoy it. Cycle for 50 miles and enjoy it. Feel the weather. The changeable, mutable, weather that gives each day some added variation. The physical world is a wonderful thing.