Saturday, April 1, 2017

State of the Patreon: April

Last month, I hit record highs twice.  First, I beat my first goal, and now we're working on adding art to Psi-Wars, which is honestly one of my biggest goals.  Second, I hit an all-time-high of 11,400 views on my blog.  Word is getting around, it seems, and you guys especially liked the Empire.  The biggest news is that someone is running a Psi-Wars campaign (I've already mentioned it, but let's mention it again!).  Based on where my views aggregate, I think there's at least one more campaign out there somewhere, or someone is using a lot of my character material to support their own ideas; either way, I call that a win.

Psi-Wars itself and my Patreon have both received some kind reviews, both from Libris Ludorum. I find the Patreon review particularly fascinating, because I've never seen such a thing.  It makes sense though, and actually, I think it's something more people should do.  Many people become patrons to support people they like, but it's ultimately a business transaction, so it would be nice to know what you're getting for your money.
First of all, a major heads up, the big thing coming in April is Theodore Cayden Dover, my son.  When that happens, I will take at least a week off, and I may have to re-evaluate how I handle the blog.  Between Orphan of the Stars, extra work on the Patreon and helping my wife, I've run low on advanced material.  I have enough to keep everyone happy in April, but May is an open question, but we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

The current plan, however, is:

April will finish up the Empire, including a look at the Imperial Navy (next week), then Intelligence and Black Ops, which were ideas that hit me late int he process (two weeks), and the Imperial Character considerations (likely the end of the month, but children get here when they want to get here).

For Fellow Travellers ($3+), I have the Imperial Personnel and Material preview scheduled for... RIGHT NOW!  Head over and get it!

Last month, I felt like I didn't have enough material for my Dreamers ($1+), so this month, I've tried to make it up to you.  Coming next week, I have two posts: Imperial Tactics: Security and Imperial Tactics: the Navy.  These both come with Polls for all Patrons.  As I worked on the Empire, I found myself wondering how they actually operated  How did security chase you?  How do they handle their prisoners?  What does a planetary invasion look like?  Some of these thoughts have worked their way into my designs (and I've made some edits as a result of working out those tactics), but I wonder how useful they might be to a reader.  So, the Poll will ask you just that.  Based on your input, I'll drop them, add them in their totality, add even more, or only add specific parts.

I've also worked out the exact composition of a typical Imperial ground force, which I can give you too, as part of that, if anyone is interested, but I think you can derive it from Imperial Materiel and Tactics, which is what I worked it out for.

Then I have a fun post I worked up to answer questions unasked: the Scale of the Empire.  I personally think the Empire is "Big enough," but I do the math for people who want to know how big "big enough" probably is.  This is also available for $1+.

Then (busy month), I have the Names of Humanity, three different versions of names based on the three sub-cultures of humanity, made available to all $1+ patrons.  I'm looking for feedback there too, but the real reason I'm releasing that is because...

This month, I'm going to ask my Disciples ($7+; yes, you guys finally get one of your big exclusives) for Imperial NPCs.  You get to write up the big admirals, the directorate, ruthless special agents or cute bridge bunnies, whatever you like, and I'll add it to the Empire.  I have a document coming out that will outline what I want and offer some ideas and inspiration to get you going.  This will be a highly collaborative affair, as you'll need to work closely with me and with your fellow disciples (Imagine how embarrassing it would be if you both show up to the party with the Most Ruthless Admiral in the Empire!), but I trust to your dedication, creativity and astonishingly good looks to make this work.

So, there you are, my dear patrons.  If you are a patron, you have my thanks for making last month a really big one, and if you're not, I'd love to have you.

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