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Writing to the Goal & FoSTV Update

July 4th, 2011 by Troy Goodfellow · 10 Comments · FoSTV

I love to write more than just about anything else in the world. It’s connected to a larger love of language and how words fit together to make sense. In a lot of my chats with my close friends, we will find great or terrible sentences and examine how they become amazing or go horribly awry.

As a media person, I wrote a lot of different things. Features were always my favorite, though they took the most work. Reviews were fun, columns were super hard but I liked the discipline they imposed. Previews were the absolute worst – writing about a game that is still eight or twelve months from completion is not something I miss at all. Then, of course, you have blog posts like the ones I wrote here as I laid out a bunch of general ideas on how to understand strategy games. (I think one of the reasons I blog less – on top of gaming less – is because I have less to say about that now.)

Now I write things that call upon talents I wasn’t sure I had. I’ve already talked about press releases and how they are not exactly the efficient brutal use of language that I was reared on. I’m using exclamation points now. And not ironically. This is a sad state of affairs.

I’m also writing memos and briefs, scripts for promotions, punching up names and text, converting awkward English translations into something both accurate and sensible without knowing the original language and sending email to former colleagues to implore them to maybe give one of our games another preview or to interview one of our clients. Talk about having to know your audience…

I’ve often said that there is no way I could write a novel. While I think I have a great ear for dialog and character (the voices in my head seem to agree, at least), my plot pacing would be terrible. It’s the efficiency bug again, you see. I would just race to the end and wrap things up. Fiction requires a skill set that I think may be beyond me, even in short story form. But the more types of writing I do and learn, the more plausible it seems that I could do long form fiction.

Though, of course, I would prefer my first book to be non-fiction.

Anyway, I post all this as way of reminding all of you and myself that work on Flash of Steel TV continues. The webcam is fine, though I need to find the right angle where I don’t look like a tool. The microphone has decent sound, but I will soon get a proper desktop mic.

It’s the writing and outlining of the episodes that is proving to be the most fun and challenge. I will want game video in here, so when do I choose to voiceover and what do I show when I am talking? How many pages is five minutes really? Especially when you are a fast talker like me? All of these things I had never thought about in writing are now pretty important and actually kind of cool. So, so, so much to learn.

I want the first episode to be decent, so I am taking my time finishing this plan. I can yammer to my webcam nonstop, but if I want to learn how to do all the skills that come with amateur video editing and script writing, then I need to take it seriously. I am getting good advice on how to approach it, and mid-July looks like a good target for unveiling the show to world. I will do some demo videos this week (not for public consumption) and see if I can find a back drop that doesn’t look as depressing as my apartment.

Watch this space.


10 Comments so far ↓

  • Simon Taverner


  • Joe

    Do you have any acting experience? I’ve always thought that the reason they get real actors to do cartoons’ voices and game voiceovers (and read books on tape) is because it’s difficult for non-actors to even read a script without sounding very wooden. That’s what I’d imagine my biggest production problem would be.

  • Troy

    FoSTV won’t be acting – it will be just like a podcast only with video and much shorter. I will explain concepts and talk about design and the like.

    But yes, I do have acting experience if high school counts. Plus a lot of public speaking experience, which is more relevant.

  • Fran

    Best of luck! Better that it take a while to set up and be good than to be rushed and be poor.

  • Anders

    When I think of FoSTV i picture someone talking from the heart about a game. So I would picture something like a review, where you show some clips of the game when making a point about something you do, or don’t, like.

    Anyways, looking forward to the outcome! Already subscribed! =)

  • Sam

    Please devote an episode to how supply works in HOI3. TIA.

  • zipdrive

    So , how does one get advice on script writing? Especially in such short form?

  • Tristanc

    I believe Troy meant this as the response to Zipdrive, but posted it in the comments of Training Wheels: Learning to Race instead.
    Troy // Aug 1, 2011 at 9:16 am

    I get advice on script writing from people who’ve done short video blogs. My universe of media personality types is pretty extensive.

  • Troy

    Damn. Thanks.

  • Troy

    I get advice on script writing from people who’ve done short video blogs. My universe of media personality types is pretty extensive.