Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Springing into Action??

Well, I had several possible goals for introducing the Sparks Primer and taking the Sparks introduction out of existing products AND introducing a new product. Initially, I hoped to "re-energize" on time for GM's Day March 4th but it became clear that would not happen. The second goal was to go with the first day of Spring and "Spring into Action" but clearly that hasn't happened either.

It generally seems best to introduce a new product(s) on a Thursday in hopes that they'll stay on the new product list on the front page during the weekend. This Thursday is highly unlikely due to conflicts with family events. This leaves next week Thursday which would be March 31st, the day before April 1st, you know, April Fool's Day? Not sure if I want a re-launch to be a joke.

Right now I want to focus on having products ready for release and then worry about the timing of their release. It has been so long now that it would be best to have products lined up and ready to go so that I am certain I can have at least one product per month for the 3 months following my re-launch giving me time to focus on creating more new products.

When I am a bit further along I will update the website (finally) with more information and some tentative release dates. Well, this is a child-free work day for me so I had better get back to it.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Over a year later ...

Okay, it has been over a year since the last post. While some work has been done, I honestly got so frustrated with some aspects of the "business" that I basically ended up taking a long break. I will explain some of the reasons in the future but the main reason for this post is that GU is indeed getting ready to come back to life.

(1) I have been able to get some "game time" in lately. I guess I just feel odd writing material for games when I am not getting a chance to play them. Now that I have had a chance to play some games lately, I am also getting more writing done.

(2) The outlines and plans I had one year ago are still viable now, and this makes some of my planning much easier.

(3) Artwork- okay, this was (and sometimes still is) one of the main reasons for the long break. The products GU puts out simply aren't profitable enough to hire the more known, dependable artists leaving me looking at stock art and "new" artists.

Hmm, wasn't going to get into it now, but why not. Last year at this time I purchased "stock" art that ended up being someone's copyrighted artwork. I got my money back, and that company is nowhere to be seen, but it was a major hassle, and really a big concern for me. Then I contracted with an artist for cover art for a new line I was planning, no artwork ever arrived, artist disappeared. Same thing happened with a contract for maps and some interior art-THAT was frustrating as I paid 50% in advance when the artist turned in several rough sketches to make certain he was on the right track. I think everyone sees where this is going.

(3.1) Future products are going to be even more "art-lite" than the earlier releases. I do have an artist that can do some work for me-- but alas, my son has competitive soccer, high school soccer, and a full load of high school classes and I don't want to overburden him.

Time Table???
Well, I thought I was going to get some products revamped and new products launched before Spring Break (March 12th) but that is unlikely to happen. In addition, I will be out of town for a week and don't want to release material before leaving town. I would say "April 1st" but considering my track record the last 18 months that would have to be a joke wouldn't it?

I am leaving the time table open ended for now. Things will happen soon, but I am giving myself a good 6-8 weeks if necessary. This should allow me plenty of time to finish the Sparks module, remove the Sparks info from products, edit a few products, and prepare some new products. Let's keep our fingers crossed.