Tag Archives: work

My New Title

For a month or so, I’ve been scrapping personal projects, pulling away from potential commitments, and generally rearranging my personal life. I mentioned in passing that I had a couple of work opportunities pop up that I was really excited about, but I needed to make my personal life more flexible to better plan around them. At GenCon, I was able to announce one of those opportunities. I realized that some people who read this blog might actually be interested in the news as well, so here goes.

Previously, my title at White Wolf had been “Alternative Publishing Developer.” As the stuff I work on moves from being the alternative to the way we do business, we realized that my title was a bit of a misnomer. I suggested a few options (including just “Developer”), but my boss surprised me by giving me a much bigger title.

As of August 1, I am the World of Darkness Developer for White Wolf Publishing.

My job duties haven’t really changed as such – they’ve just increased in scope. I had already been shepherding a number of World of Darkness products in my time with the company, and over time the other guys have trusted me more and more to make my own calls on things. In retrospect the title is making official something that’s been happening unofficially for a while, but it’s still an amazing vote of confidence to even be offered the chance to call myself the World of Darkness Developer.

So, that’s a lot of the reason why I’ve been crazy busy lately. The post-GenCon rush is starting to die down a bit, so things are settling a bit more, and hopefully I should be able to get back to my backlog of topics to blog about. Plus I do have another (much less time-intensive) personal project in the works that I’ll serialize on this blog at some point – I want to make sure I can build up a backlog before I announce it, so if I get hit with workworkworkworkwork again, there won’t be a pause in the project.

Aliens Have Invaded My Work Process

Alienware M11x
My new laptop

So, after a really frustrating several weeks, I’m finally starting to settle back into things a little bit. A big piece of that was the early arrival of my new laptop – the Alienware M11x.

Let me diverge the conversation for a moment into nomenclature. The M11x (officially dubbed “Shockwave”)1 is only slightly bigger than my old netbook. Even the netbook was pretty high-end. There isn’t a clear line between “netbook” and “small laptop,” but as Ravage was based more on battery life and portability over performance, it felt more like a netbook – an extension of my larger laptop. The M11x, though, is actually more powerful than my old laptop. So, I feel that Shockwave is a laptop, rather than a netbook.2

Anyhow, this thing is fucking amazing. I won’t go into a full review of it (you can find plenty of those on your own, if you’re interested), but there are a lot of pros and cons to my original set-up of living off of two laptops.

Continue reading Aliens Have Invaded My Work Process

  1. Yes, I name all my computers after Transformers. The netbook was named Ravage, and the bigger laptop I was using for work stuff was called Blaster. Our home network is called Devastator, but was originally Omega Supreme at our old apartment. I’m also pretty sure this is the first time I’ve mentioned this outside of my family.
  2. Plus, it cost about four or five times what the netbook cost, so there’s that.

Status Report

My Grandmother's glasses

Image by Earl – What I Saw 2.0 via Flickr

Things have calmed down a bit, so I have time to write a status report of what’s up with me.

Grandmom
The weekend sorting out Grandmom’s house and going to her funeral was emotionally difficulty, but socially and logistically fine. There was no drama, and only very minor snags in getting things sorted out. We’ll probably have to make a few trips back and forth to TN to resolve some more stuff, but it’s just a matter of getting it all done.

It hit me hard partially because it was so sudden — just a few weeks ago we were at her house over Christmas break, and we had no idea that there was any problem. The other part is because, in many ways, Grandmom had become much like a mother to Michelle (and by extension, me and David) over the past few years, so it was more like losing a parent than a grandparent.

But life moves on, and so do we.

Work
Work has been its usual blend of awesome, exciting, challenging, stressful, and systemically chaotic. For every time I have to toss documents onto my netbook to make sure I can work over the weekend to get things done, there are the times when I get to play Assassin’s Creed 2 and Mass Effect 2 as research for work.

I admit I was reluctant to get back to work on Tuesday after the emotional rollercoaster, but I also know that if I don’t force myself to be social, I’ll become a hermit and withdraw from people even further. Luckily, I have a lot of friends that I’m privledged to call co-workers, and between the camaraderie and the personal feeling of accomplishment I get when I can check items off of my list, I was able to feel more myself by the end of the day.

Social Life
Weirdly, the past few months have seen a resurgance in my social life. I’m going out to dinner more often than I ever used to, and it seems that it’s a rare weekend where we don’t have something going on. (For example, this weekend is our monthly Requiem LARP, and then we have tickets to see the WWE Royal Rumble here in Atlanta.) I’m in a few different games, and we often go out to concerts, shows, and events.

I’m often not a very social person, usually happy to sit at home, but I have to admit that it’s been really nice going out and being with other human creatures. Of course, sometimes I’ve had to bow out of a social obligation to get work or writing done, but it’s been nice to have the option to hang out with a diverse group of people with varying interests. Plus, it’s good for me to get out of my head for a while and not burn out on the endless projects I can end up giving myself to do.

Writing
Right now I’m working on side projects like Whitechapel and my podcasts and my anthology fiction when I have bits of time. For a while I was able to juggle it all, but with Grandmom passing I’m having to prioritize everything on my plate. Still, Whitechapel is getting some good buzz, and I have some notes for the ghost story I want to write in the next couple of months. Like Justin, I’ve got a lot of scraps that I want to stitch together, so I might as well keep driving that into stuff that sees the light of day. I’m also continuing to learn from my peers and trying new things all the time about my craft.

The Camarilla
Honestly, I haven’t been paying a whole lot of attention to it. I understand some stuff is going on, and some people are excited by some stuff and angry at other stuff, but after nearly 13 years of regular club participation, it seems like people are always excited by some stuff and angry at other stuff.

Mass Effect 2
Did I mention that I’m playing Mass Effect 2? Because I am. (Well, not at the moment. Right now I’m getting ready to go play D&D.)

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Want to work at CCP?

There are a number of open positions at for our various video game projects at CCP (where I work). Right now, the fastest way to be considered is to apply online at  www.ccpgames.com . Descriptions can be found on our website for these openings, but some links are below.

(Note: I’m just forwarding this on from Human Resources. If you have questions, go to the website and send them there — I’m just a writer monkey.)

 

Senior Programmer

Atlanta, USA

Programmers

Programmer

Atlanta, USA

Programmers

Concept Artists

Reykjavik, Iceland

Art

Animator

Atlanta, USA

Art

English Game Master

Shanghai, China

Game Masters

Database Administrator

Reykjavik, Iceland

Operations

Senior Game Designer

Shanghai, China

Content & Game Design

Senior Web Developer

Reykjavik, Iceland

Web Development

Senior QA Engineer

Atlanta, USA

Quality Assurance

German speaking Game Master

Reykjavik, Iceland

Game Masters

QA Engineer

Atlanta, USA

Quality Assurance

Senior Graphics Programmer

Reykjavik, Iceland

Programmers

Graphics Programmer

Reykjavik, Iceland

Programmers

IT Manager

Shanghai, China

Operations

QA Engineer

Reykjavik, Iceland

Quality Assurance

Programmer

Shanghai, China

Programmers

Programmer

Reykjavik, Iceland

Programmers

Action Script Programmer

Shanghai, China

Programmers

Artist / Graphic Designer

Reykjavik, Iceland

Art

QA Tester

Reykjavik, Iceland

Quality Assurance

Customer Acquisition Manager

Atlanta, USA

Marketing

Senior Game Engineer

Shanghai, China

Programmers

Game Designer

Atlanta, USA

Content & Game Design

Senior Animation Programmer

Atlanta, USA

Programmers

Technical Director

Atlanta, USA

Programmers

Associate Content Developer

Atlanta, USA

Content & Game Design

QA Tech Lead

Reykjavik, Iceland

Quality Assurance

Content Manager

Atlanta, USA

Content & Game Design

Engineering Manager

Shanghai, China

Programmers

Senior/Lead Character Modeler

Reykjavik, Iceland

Art

Quality Assurance Engineer

Shanghai, China

Quality Assurance

Revenge of the Cyborg Barbarians

Nethack 3.4.

Image via Wikipedia

Things have been pretty busy ’round here lately. A couple of weeks ago I took on some new job responsibilities[1] which have involved a lot of learning new things. It also involved moving from an office with a Mac computer to a cube with a Vista computer. It’s really exciting, and I’m enjoying the challenge, but man, shit be crazy trying to stay on top of things right around now. As an example, something that I thought would only take me a few hours over the weekend pretty much took up most of it. I’m still managing to keep a lot of balls in the air (like Whitechapel), but some other things have had to be put on hold for a bit while I settle into a new routine (like the White Wolf Blogcast).

When I’ve had a moment to reflect here and there, I’ve been poking around with more old-school gaming. NetHack and AngBand have been an entertaining distraction, and the sheer unrepentantly wacky fantasy has been surprisingly refreshing. Elf ninjas mixing it up with cyborg barbarians is just so unabashedly and unrepentantly fun. Sure, I still prefer games with strong narratives and deep immersion, but memories of Final Fantasy VII[2]and Thundarr the Barbarian[3] remind me of a time when I thought wearing sunglasses and a trenchcoat while wielding a katana actually was cool, and not just a stereotype.

So I’ve been flipping through everything from retroclone games like Labyrinth Lord and Basic Fantasy to loving parodies like Encounter Critical to actual classic game experiences like Rifts and red box D&D. Playing in a D&D 4e game at work has been helping to scratch that itch a bit, but I admit I’m not entirely sure if I really want to break out a new game to recapture the fun of wahoo fantasy, or if the idea of such a game is more interesting than actually playing one. Nostalgia is a fickle mistress.

I’ve also recently (and somewhat coincidentally) been watching a lot of comedic sci-fi: Red Dwarf, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (TV show), and Red Vs. Blue, which have been leading me to some ideas for a new fiction project… but that’s later. Probably after Whitechapel is done.

Speaking of nostalgia, I’ve been slowly reconnecting with some of my old elementary and high school friends on Facebook. I mean, most people talk about using Facebook to find old classmates, but I didn’t really look any of them up. They just kind of found me. And it’s been a weird (but very pleasant) experience. It’s all been coalescing into a stew of contemplation.

I finally picked up a copy of Shadows Over Baker Street after seven million people[4] expressed disbelief that I hadn’t read it yet. Overall it’s been enjoyable. Plus, right now it’s a bit easier to read a short story in between things going on instead of trying to stay on top of a 2,000 page novel from George R. R. Martin.

Eh, that’s that. Brain’s dry.

Footnotes

Footnote 1: No, I can’t really talk about them at the moment.

Footnote 2: Swords that shoot bullets and have magic gem slots in a cyberpunk world? FUCK YES.

Footnote 3: Ditto for laser swords and sorcery.

Footnote 4: Give or take 6,999,993.

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GenCon Post-Mortem

Gen Con

Image via Wikipedia

I have a lot to cover (even though it’ll be bullet points), BUT FIRST I want to point out two relevant podcast episodes were launched while I was at GenCon:

The Basics of the Game talked about City of the Sand, the Mind’s Eye Theatre: The Requiem SAS.

I was also on the Saturday, 5pm episode of This Just In From GenCon!.

There are some other podcast interviews I did at GenCon, which I will post as soon as I know they’re up, but there’s over half an hour of audio for your listening pleasure.

So, Eddy, how was GenCon?

  • It was insane. Previous years I had a chance to work the booth and walk the floor for at least a couple days. This time, I had two panels, three podcast interviews (and two that I ended up being on even though I wasn’t directly part of the podcast), two "Play With A WW Writer" tabletop games (using New Wave Requiem), helped out with Storytelling two LARP sessions, one award ceremony, two meetings, two business dinners, five business parties and one business lunch (which I completely forgot about). With the exception of Saturday, I wasn’t at the booth for more than an hour, and I wasn’t able to walk the sales floor for more than two hours overall.
  • It was humbling. Previously, I’ve offered to do signings and the like for books, and the response has always been kind of an "oh, okay." Since I joined White Wolf, people seemed excited to talk to me, but more because I work for White Wolf rather than any particular interest in me specifically. This time, I had a lot of people who were wanting to talk to me specifically. Peers and fans both wanted to talk to me about things I’m associated with, thank me for specific projects that I worked on or wanted to discuss business opportunities that I would particularly be interested in. I finally feel like I’ve arrived.
  • It was friendly. Like every year, I go into GenCon full of a year of Internet rage and vitriol, which slanted my view of the fanbase. And like every year, I was blown away at how awesome and amazing our fanbase really is. I can’t count the number of times people came up to thank someone at the booth for our hard work, or a fan patiently worked with us when things went wrong, or a customer was excited to listen to our sales pitch about Geist. One particular situation sticks in my mind: a woman came up to the booth with her two kids. She is an avid Vampire fan, and wanted to look into a game that she could run for her kids. They decided on Scion, and asked politely if I could sign the Scion Companion. I was so blown away to find someone actively wanting to pass on the hobby of tabletop gaming to the next generation that I made sure to get as many of the people in the booth who worked on Scion to sign the booth as I could.
  • It was too long. By Sunday, I was exhausted, but I still had a whole day to go. I slept like a rock last night when I got home, and I’m still tired today. I’m not sure if it’s the pace, the hectic schedule or just me getting old (or a combination), but it wiped me out.
  • It was too short. There were a lot of people I just didn’t get a chance to talk to (and one that I even scheduled a meeting to talk to, but it ended up not happening, much to my regret). This happens every year, and every year it frustrates me.
  • It was inspiring. While I barely got a chance to look at some of the hot new releases like Eclipse Phase, it was great to see so many people returning for this GenCon, despite a tough economy and GenCon’s rocky financial issues. The RPG "press" of podcasts and bloggers just gets bigger and more professional each year. The ENnie awards showed a slate of amazing games that were released last year. Things just seemed more optomistic overall, and it was amazing to be able to touch a small part of that.
  • It was fun. I had a blast.

Each year is better than the last. I’m looking forward to 2010.

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My Fans Are Awesome

That subject still feels a little weird to me, but it’s true — I have people who are fans of me and my work. For some reason, a lot of it all came in this week, and in a variety of forms.

Eddy Webb, I Envy You: A blog post by Daniel Perez of Highmoon Media about how he covets my job.

Collection of Horrors: I got a LiveJournal letter from about the Collection of Horrors. As this was a pretty big gamble for me, I’m glad it’s being received so well.

Private Message