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Posted on by Steven Savage

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, www.SeventhSanctum.com, and Steve’s Tumblr)

Let’s get to my weekly “standups”  Scrum style continue!  What have I done and what am I going to do?

(OK, yes traditional Scrum is daily, but give me a break).

So what have I done the last week?

  • Way With Worlds Minibook #1: My editor should be on it.  Waiting for updates as we speak.
  • Way With Worlds Minibook #5: I completed my monthly goals over a week ahead of time.  I might write more.
  • Way With Worlds Marketing: The newly printed bookmarks are on their way – not sure what was up with the website, but I think they just got overloaded..  So here’s hoping I didn’t completely screw it up.
  • General: Went to assorted meetups, spent time with my girlfriend, and configured a new computer (a major part of my time over the weekend).  The latter should make me more productive, except it’s powerful enough to run Overwatch, so uh . .  yeah, there’s that.
  • Additional: I took an unplanned task to help edit someone’s story.  I might be doing more of this as I feel it lets me use my knowledge.  The idea is maybe I’ll offer, now and then, to do a deep-dive on someone’s chapter #1.

What am I going to do this week:

  • Way With Worlds Minibook #1:  Well I want to get this back, but it’s not required – I do want it back early May.
  • Seventh Sanctum Spotlight: I’m going to contact the folks who wanted to do it this week to start queuing content.  My goal was to contact but not necessarily publish, so I think this might be easier to just do end of month so next month starts queued up.
  • Miscellaneous Marketing: I want to check with local comic shops on speaking and do more with my self-pub group that also has a group of speakers.
  • General: Finishing any final computer configurations.  Probably get some social time in.  Plan next month.  Lots of miscellaneous and clean-up this month.

Challenges and blockers:

  • No blockers; if anything slightly ahead.
  • Long-term the next pop culture is on hold, and probably won’t start until late summer/early fall as my co-author is busy.

General:

  • Next month is shaping up to focus on Fanime, and a new project – writing fiction.

– Steve


Posted on by Scott Delahunt

A while back, Lost in Translation reviewed the 2015 Jem and the Holograms film.  Today, let’s look at the cartoon that people were expecting to be the base of that film.

As mentioned in the movie review, the Eighties saw rules and regulations over children’s programming relaxed, allowing toy manufacturers to create animated series that were effectively ads for the toys.  Hasbro saw success with both Transformers and G.I. Joe, thanks to the collaboration with Marvel Productions and Sunbow Productions.  With the boys’ line of toys comfortable, Hasbro turned to its girls line.

The fashion doll industry is dominated by one company, Mattel.  Mattel’s Barbie line dominates the doll aisles at stores.  Hasbro decided to try to get a piece of the action by introducing its own line of fashion dolls, Jem and the Holograms.  The initial line in 1986 featured Jerrica Benton, her rock star alter ego Jem, her younger sister Kimber, and foster sisters Aja and Shana, all of whom made up the band.  A rival band, the Misfits, also received dolls – Pizzazz, Roxy, and Stormer.  To round out the line, Jerrica/Jem had a boyfriend doll, Rio.  The dolls and fashions were inspired by the music videos of the time, with wild coloured hair and pastel tones.  The initial dolls came with music cassettes with two songs each from the Holograms and the Misfits.

The doll line lasted two years before Hasbro discontinued it due to lack of sales.  Mattel’s introduction of the Barbie and the Rockers line the same year Jem and the Holograms debuted didn’t help matters.  However, by the time the Jem line wrapped up, twenty-four dolls were released, including two releases each of the Holograms, the Misfits, and Rio and three sets of Jem and Jerrica.

To help with sales, Hasbro went with the Marvel/Sunbow team up that had success with G.I. Joe and Transformers.  Christy Marx, who had written scripts for both prior cartoons. became the story editor for the new series, Jem and the Holograms.  The series revolves around Jerrica Benton, Starlight Music, and the foster home, Starlight Girls.  Jerrica starts the series as co-owner of Starlight Music, her late father’s company, along with Eric Raymond.  Eric, though, sees Starlight as a means to an end, getting rich, and is using the company to line his pockets.  To this end, he backs the Misfits, a punk band made up of Pizzazz, Roxy, and Stormer.  Jerrica discovers Eric’s duplicity and tries to find a way to take full control of Starlight Music.  The answer is a contest highlighting new bands.

Jerrica, though, doesn’t have one immediately available.  She discovers, though, that her father had been working on a secret project and tracks it down to an abandoned drive-in theatre.  Inside, her father’s computer, Synergy, reveals itself and its advanced holographic capabilities to Jerrica, allowing her to become Jem.  Her sisters Kimber, Shana, and Aja, join Jerrica and become the Holograms.  The contest boils down to one between Jem and the Holograms and the Misfits.

Pizzazz wants to win.  She’s in music for the fame and has no scruples in how she gets it.  She’s perfect for Eric’s purposes, sabotaging Jem’s public appearances.  However, the key element is performance, and Jem and the Holograms edge out the Misfits, letting Jerrica get the money to fully own Starlight Music and fund the Starlight Girls.  Thus ending the first five episodes of the series.  Eric is arrested and the Misfits are looking for a new label as a result.

The series continues in a similar vein.  Eric gets out thanks to being able to afford the best lawyers money can buy.  The Misfits become rivals to Jem and the Holograms, trying to sabotage the latter group’s efforts any time they can.  Eric continues to try to retake Starlight Music, using evvery avenue of attack he can, at least until he starts up Misfits Music with the Misfits.  Meanwhile, Jerrica’s relationship with her boyfriend Rio Pacheco becomes complicated thanks to Jem.  As much as Jerrica wants to tell him the truth,. Synergy insists that her technologies remain secret.  The lives of the Holograms are no less complex.  Kimber has her own love triangle develop between a British singer and an American stuntman, while she tries to live in the dual shadow of her sister and her alter ego.

In the third season, a new band appears.  The Stingers, comprised of lead singer Riot and musicians Rapture and Minx become a rival to both Jem and the Holograms and the Misfits.  Working with Eric, the Stingers take over Mistfits Music and rename it Stinger Sound.  The third season ran shorter than the first two, in part because the Hasbro had discontinued the toy line.  No toys, no need to advertise.  However, the cartoon was a ratings success.

Each episode featured two or three songs, either as a montage related to the scene it appears in or as a more traditional 80s music video.  The Misfits appear in most of the episodes, one key exception being the anti-drug “Alone Again“.  Some of the draw for the series was the music; the show revolved around two bands, after all.  Each band had a distinctive sound, with the Misfits having a harsher tone than Jem and the Holograms.

Ultimately, while the series was popular, that popularity didn’t translate into sales.  The sheer size of the line of dolls, which included three of the Starlight Girls, Synergy, and two friends of Jem, Danse and Video, may have spread what sales there were.  Availability was an issue in some areas, where the cartoon aired but the dolls weren’t in stores.  Mattel’s Barbie and the Rockers may have also eaten into the sales, having a known name despite the lack of cartoon.  From this view, Jem and the Holograms failed on what it was supposed to do, sell dolls.  However, a cartoon that still draws in viewers over twenty-five years later, that is truly outrageous.


Posted on by Steven Savage

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, www.SeventhSanctum.com, and Steve’s Tumblr)

Deciding to call this “Steve’s” Update because you know it is mine.  Anyway, the weekly “standups”  Scrum style continue!  What have I done and what am I going to do?

So what have I done the last week?

  • Got the Color Generator deployed.  It’s out and being used, so go to it!  I also learned a lot about generators making it.
  • Way With Worlds Minibook #1: I should hear from the editor this week.
  • Way With Worlds Minibook #5: Still writing away, a bit ahead of my game actually.  Might crank out a bit more than intended.
  • Way With Worlds Marketing: I got new flyers for Way With Worlds put together, now I just have to print them, but ran into some issues with the printer website malfunctioning – maybe everyone is busy.
  • Seventh Sanctum Spotlight: Will probably start next week.  I do have a kind-of-spotlight with Character Creation Is The Whole Game.
  • General: Went to a meetup, went to Rifftrax, cleaned out a closet and a half, did a newsletter, finished my laptop research.

What am I going to do this week:

  • Printing the Way With Worlds Flyers: If the aforementioned interruption is overcome.
  • Way With Worlds Minibook #5: Still writing.
  • General: Purchase and recieve that laptop, go to some social events.  Likely to be a light week here – going to be focusing on a lot of “life” stuff.

Challenges and blockers:

  • No blockers right now except said interruption with printing the flyers.

General:

  • May will be a bit busy due to Fanime so it’ll probably involve me focusing mostly on my current works and not taking on any new generators, etc.

– Steve


Posted on by Steven Savage

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, www.SeventhSanctum.com, and Steve’s Tumblr)

OK everyone, here’s an amazing little game – the character creation engine is the game. So raise stats, unlock choices, play character – and this guy is looking for contributors/help!  So go on, try it then ask him how you can make it awesomer!

https://beschizza.github.io/charactercreationisthewholegame/

– Steve


Posted on by Scott Delahunt

Lost in Translation has analyzed the two American-made Godzilla movies, both the 1998 version and the 2014.  The history of Godzilla and Gojira are expanded in those, but the short version is that title kaiju began as a message about the horrors of the atomic age, espeically the atomic bomb.  As the franchise progressed, Godzilla became the defender of the Earth, though not necessarily of humanity has he rampages through Tokyo leaving massive collateral damage in his wake.  The 2014 Hollywood version changed the message, from the dangers of the atomic era to the dangers of climate change.

However, the 1998 and 2014 versions were not the first American adaptations.  Prior to them, the animation studio Hanna-Barbera licensed the character in 1978 from Toho to create the Godzilla cartoon.  What better way to entertain young children on a Saturday morning than watching a giant monster rampaging through the cities of the world?  Considering that local stations, particularly in the UHF band, had more control over their time slots than today and had more hours to fill with local programming, both weekend afternoons and late-night and overnight hours, the very same young children watching the Godzilla cartoon would be able to watch an older Godzilla movie later the same weekend.

The series followed the crew of the Calico, a research vessel travelling the world’s oceans.  While Captain Carl Majors was in charge of the ship, Dr. Quinn Darien was the head of the unspecified research project.  Quinn had two members of her team, Brock, her research assistant, and Pete Darien, her nephew.  Rounding out the team is Godzooky, Godzilla’s young nephew.  When the crew of the Calico is in a tight spot, they summon Godzilla himself.

A typical episode would have the Calico in a location by the ocean making a new discovery, usually related to the giant monster of the week.  The crew investigates, with Pete and Godzooky often told to remain behind because of the danger.  If they were told, eventually they disobey and follow.  The giant monster is found and Godzilla is summoned.  The first fight between titans is a draw as the newcomer’s abilities either force Godzilla to back down or allows it to run away.  The team tracks the giant monster and summons Godzilla one more time for the final fight.  The draw of the show, though, is the battle between giant monsters, and the cartoon does deliver.

While the crew of the Calico was created for the cartoon, Godzooky is based on an existing character in the Godzilla mythos – Minilla.  First appearing in Son of Godzilla, Minilla, known as Minya in some dubs, is the son of Godzilla.  Both Minilla and Godzooky share some traits, including blowing smoke rings instead of fire and being young giant monsters.  Godzooky was in the cartoon to appeal to the kids; he is very much a lovable pet who gets into trouble but is too cute to be angry with for too long.  He is also very much child-like in that he wants to help even if he isn’t able to be effective.

The animation of the rest of the cast is along the lines of Hanna-Barbera’s own Jonny Quest.  Techniques developed with the various Scooby-Doo series can be seen, particularly as the crew runs as a group.  Godzilla is very much in line with his cinematic appearances.  However, one of the draws of the movies, the casual destruction of cities as Godzilla stomps through, was reduced or completely removed, thanks to Broadcast Standards and Practices..  BS&P had strict guidelines on what could and could not be shown, and things like breathing fire on people and crushing buildings and cars underfoot were against the guidelines.  As a result, Godzilla tended to use laser beams from his eyes more this is atomic breath, which was turned into a flame breath.

While Toho licensed the character, they didn’t license Godzilla’s roar.  The studio worked around that limitation by hiring Ted Cassidy, best known as Lurch on The Addams Family and Ruk on the Star Trek episode, “What Little Girls Are Made Of”, to give voice to Godzilla.  Cassidy’s work, combined with the animation of the title character, gave weight to the monster, keeping the fierceness associated with Godzilla.

Given that the cartoon was meant for a younger Saturday morning audience, Hanna-Barbera succeeded in what they set out to do.  Godzilla lasted two season, and ran until 1981 on NBC.  While not the best adaptation it could have been, the studio’s limitations, imposed from within by format and target audience and from outside by Broadcast Standards and Practices, meant that the production was going to hit diminishing returns.  It’s not a perfect adaptation, but the Godzilla cartoon did remember the key elements to the kaiju‘s fame.


Posted on by Steven Savage

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, www.SeventhSanctum.com, and Steve’s Tumblr)

And here it is,  Color Generator!  Thanks for all your feedback, this was a delightful one to make.  I learned a lot about language and mood and a sense of “being” in a sentence and these lessons will make me better at both generators but also as a writer.

So let’s get some examples!

  • Ichas – The red of a rose. Used for secret paintings.
  • Pantedsh – The supreme green. Those that see this color cannot forget it.
  • Paost – The purple of imaginary wine. Paintings using this color ward off jealousy.
  • Khang – The sickly yellow of hatred.
  • Buife – A light red. Paper of this color is something everyone knows how to make.
  • Cecymbir – A flamboyant green. The gemstones of this color are said to grant one intelligence.
  • Lotruin – A harsh purple. Tattoos of this color are associated with laziness – but only if concealed and only if worn on the left arm.
  • Sufofe – A sober blue. The color once associated with scientists.
  • Icasanget – The orange of ideal sunrises. Those that see this color will dream of what they saw.
  • Canturn – The yellow of gold that can only exist in the future. Those that see this color see other worlds.

So there you go!  Now let’s see what our infinite new spectrum brings . . .

– Steve


Posted on by Steven Savage

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, www.SeventhSanctum.com, and Steve’s Tumblr)

And as promised weekly updates, or “standups” on the projects I’m working on since I’m planning more  Scrum style and loved Failbetter’s use of Scrum-style updates.

So what have I done the last week?

  • Got the Color Generator to final beta.  It’s basically ready to go, so I’ll check feedback, give it one more look-over, and call it done.  I’ve learned a lot about language working on this one, lessons that’ll pay off in later generators.
  • Way With Worlds Minibook #1: Is off to the editor.  Unfortunately she has family visiting and broke a finger, but expects to be typing-worthy next week.  I had no plans to use the edits until later anyway, so it won’t throw my plans off.
  • Way With Worlds Minibook #5: I’m writing questions at my planned pace.
  • Seventh Sanctum Spotlight: My plans to start promoting talent on the Sanctum are figured out, so I need to line up candidates soon – I’ve got a list.
  • General: Also went to two meetups on writing and project management on top of some gaming.  I think this new planning method is working out!

What am I going to do this week:

  • Finish the Color Generator: I’ll integrate any feedback, do a final check, and consider it done.
  • Way With Worlds Minibook #5: I’ll be writing more of this!
  • General: Another professional event this week, gearing up to purchase a new laptop, some chores, and possibly cleaning a closet (you know those boxes you never unpack until years after moving?).

Challenges and blockers:

  • No direct blockers, but I do have a concern about how to pace final edits on the Minibooks.  My default plan is essentially do a final edit early in the month they’re released, but I wonder if that’d just become a drag and I should do them all at once.  My gut take is I should do this, though I might have to up my writing pace – and really, that does sound like it’d turn into a drag.

– Steve


Posted on by Scott Delahunt

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers‘s history starts in Japan.  Toei, developed Sentai, a series about masked heroes fighting monsters, in the Sixties.  After a deal with Marvel to bring over some of the comic company’s heroes resulted in mecha getting added to sentai series, Toei continued to add giant robots, creating Super Sentai.  The sixteenth series, Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger, caught the attention of Haim Saban, owner of Saban Entertainment.  Saban worked out a deal to get the footage from Zyuranger to which he’d use the action scene and create new stories to go with them.  Mighty Morphin Power Rangers debuted in 1993.

The original Power Rangers, Jason Lee Scott, Kimberly Hart, Zack Taylor, Trini Kwan and Billy Cranston, were recruited after the sage Zordon ordered his robot aide, Alpha 5, to find “five teenagers with attitude.”  Zordon needed a team to stop Rita Repulsa, an alien sorceress who escaped imprisonment after 10 000 years.  To help fight Rita and her monsters, the Rangers received Zords, mecha that can combine into the MegaZord.  The Rangers defeat Rita’s monsters regularly, but the sorceress has a new plan – defeat the Rangers with one of their own.  She kidnaps the Green Ranger, Tommy Oliver, and turns him against the others.  Tommy does break free of the brainwashing and aids the others against her.  The series sold a number of toys, from action figures to Zords.  The effects at times were weak, the result of being a weekly series in Japan.  However, the series had a following.  The franchise is now in its twenty-fourth season with Power Rangers Ninja Steel.

As is the way of Hollywood, a popular TV series will be adapted.  Despite being in its twenty-fourth season, the studio went back to the beginning, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.  There is a tendency for film makers to turn a children’s series darker and grittier to the point where the feel is off.  With a series featuring martial arts, the potential for a grimdark remake existed.  Instead, the movie took a different approach, acting as an origin for the Rangers.

The movie starts at the beginning of the Cenozoic Era with a battle going badly for the Power Rangers.  Red Ranger Zordon, played by Bryan Cranston, orders Alpha 5, voiced by Bill Hadar, to send a meteor on his position.  This desperate act of self-sacrifice is to protect the Earth’s Zeo Crystal and the Rangers’ Power Coins from Rita Repulsa, played by Elizabeth Banks.  The meteor wipes out the dinosaurs, and buries not only the Zeo Crystal and the Power Coins, but sends Rita deep into the ocean.

Millions of years later, Jason Scott, played by Dacre Montgomery, makes a bad decision in trying to steal a mascot and winds up injuring his leg, destroying a potential career in football, placed under house arrest, and sent to detention.  While serving detention, he meets Billy Cranston, played by RJ Cyler, and Kimberly Hart, played by Naomi Scott.  Billy is in detention for blowing up his lunch box.  Kimberly is there because she forwarded an image of her cheerleader friend throughout school.  Jason becomes Billy’s friend after stopping a bully from tormenting him, though the feeling isn’t immediately reciprocated.  Billy is a genius with electronics and is able to fool the tracker Jason wears as part of his house arrest.

In return for the help, Jason drives Billy up to a gold mine.  Billy’s father had been trying to locate something hidden at the mine, and Billy continued the search after his death.  He sets up the explosives and detonates them, getting the attention of Kimberly and two other classmates, Trini Kwan, played by Becky G, and Zach Taylor, played by Ludi Lin, are also at the mine and are drawn to the explosion.  While Jason, Kimberly, Trini, and Zach argue about why they are all at the mine, Billy realizes that the rock wall is collapsing.  The collapse reveals five unusual rocks, red, blue, pink, yellow, and black.  Each of the teens grabs one and, with sirens approaching, runs away.  Eventually, they all make it into Billy’s van.  Jason tries to out run a train to escape both mine security and the police.

Out on the ocean, a fishing boat drags in its last haul of the day.  Within the net of fish is the body of a woman.  The boat’s skipper calls in for the police to meet the boat at the docks.  The body isn’t quite so dead, though.  Rita survived, frozen in the ocean until pulled on board.  When one of Angel Grove’s finest arrives to investigate, he is surprised that the body not only isn’t dead but is trying to kill him.

Jason wakes up the next morning surprised to be alive and unsure of just how he got home.  He gets out of bed, then notices that he isn’t wearing his knee brace.  The red stone he discovered at the mine is still with him, even if he leaves it in another room.  Jason also discovers that he has superhuman strength.  He returns to the mine, where he sees the wreckage of Billy’s van.  The other teenagers have also returned.  More or less as a group, they explore the mine and discover a long buried spaceship deep under the rock.  The ship’s caretaker, Alpha 5, rounds up the group and brings them to the central chamber to meet Zordon, who is now part of the ship’s computer matrix.  Zordon welcomes the new Power Rangers and warns them that Rita will be at full strength again in eleven days.  The new Rangers need to train and to learn to morph.

While their training, while painful, is difficult, the new Rangers do learn.  Alpha 5 presents holographic versions of Rita’s Putties, the minions she uses as the first wave.  Morphing, though, is another matter.  None of the Rangers are able to morph at first.  Even after Alpha 5 shows the Rangers their Zords, mecha that took the shape of the dominant life form of the Cenozoic Era, the teens aren’t able to morph.  The closest any of them get is Billy, who morphs into his blue armour while breaking up a fight between Jason and Zack.

Rita keeps busy while the Rangers train.  She collects gold to recreate her monster Goldar, who will be able to dig to retrieve Earth’s Zeo Crystal, dooming the world and giving her the ability to destroy other planets.  Rita isn’t picky about where she gets her gold, either.  Some of her victims have their gold fillings removed.  She senses the other Power Coins and realizes that new Rangers have been discovered, in part because she had been the Green Ranger under Zordon’s leadership until she turned her back on her oath.  Rita breaks into Trini’s home to have her send a message to the others to be at the docks.

Trini tells her fellow Rangers about Rita.  Despite not being able to morph yet, Jason decides that this is the best time for them to take down Rita.  Rita, though, is more than ready for them and easily defeats the group.  She knows one of them has the location of the Zeo Crystal and threatens to kill the Rangers one by one until she gets it.  Billy, who managed to work out where the Crystal is, doesn’t want to lose any of his new friends and gives her the key words without completely giving away the location.

It takes a tragedy to turn the Rangers from a group of teenagers into a proper team.  The death of a teammate makes them realize that each of them would gladly sacrifice their life for the others.  The Morphing Grid unlocks and instead of Zordon returning, the dead teammate does.  The team morphs for the first time and heads out to fight Rita once again.  Rita, though, sends her Putties against them at the ship.  The fight is difficult, but when Zach brings out his Zord to even the odds, the others follow suit.  The Putties defeated, the Rangers ride out to save Angel Grove from Rita and her monster.

Unlike the TV series, the movie has the advantage of being written as one whole instead of having to incorporate existing footage from Zyuranger with a new script.  The formular of the series – Rita hatches a scheme, sends out her Putties and her monster of the week, Putties get defeated, monster forces the Rangers to call their Zords, Rita makes her monster grow, and the Rangers summon the MegaZord – is in the movie, but the movie isn’t just the formula.  Instead, the formula provides a scaffold to build on, and gets reshaped in the process.  The heart of the movie is the team and how the Rangers come together.

Each Ranger has a problem to overcome.  Jason’s is that he is impulsive and prone to self-sabotage.  Kimberly was a mean girl who had to face up to what she did.  Zach is worried about his mother and being alone if anything happens to her.  Trini is discovering that she is a lesbian and feels that she’s an outsider even in her own family.  Billy is on the autistic spectrum and is well aware of the problems he faces as a result.  By being able to move past their problems and open up to each other, they turn from a group of teenagers to a team of Power Rangers.  Each of the Rangers’ problems comes from a real place.  None of them are sensationalized.  Billy’s autism is one of the more realistic portrayals around, as is Trini’s feeling of being an outsider because of her sexuality and Kimberly’s reaction to what she had done to her friend.

The casting worked.  As mentioned above, RJ Cyler’s portrayal of Billy was believable.  Elizabeth Banks as Rita channelled J-horror movies, with her early movement similar Ringu`s Sadako.  Rita went from evil sorceress to frightening villain.  Bryan Cranston’s Zordon had wisdom fighting against desire, a mentor who demanded much but knew exactly what the stakes were.  The movie also used colour as a symbol.  When the Rangers first meet and while they`re still trying to morph, the colours are muted, dark, and murky.  When they become a team, the colour turns bright and full.  In part, this helps show off the Zords and the Rangers colour-coded armour, but it also works to show the transition from teenager to hero.

Power Rangers takes Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and expands on it, giving the Rangers depth of character and showing them becoming heroes.  Rita’s villainy also expands, showing just how evil the sorceress is.  Yet, the movie never forgets its heritage and embraces it.  Power Rangers is a well-done adaptation of a beloved franchise’s beginnings.


Posted on by Steven Savage

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, www.SeventhSanctum.com, and Steve’s Tumblr)

The Color Generator is coming along nicely. Check these out!
http://www.seventhsanctum.com/generate.php?Genname=color

  • Rentehiem – The oldest blue. Under light of this color gold tarnishes.
  • Osochawn – The yellow of gold. Those that see this color go insane.
  • Enklu – The yellow of gold that you will one day see.
  • Stast – The orange of a sunrise. Those that see this color become sane.
  • Pigurmote – A bold greenish-blue. The color of old dreams.
  • Tefrou – The orange of a sunrise. Paintings using this color stop envy.
  • Ichre – The orange of imaginary fires.
  • Ouwath – The purple of disgust and of the evening sky that can never be imagined.
  • Detingat – A fiery yellow. The color of clothing once worn by witches, but that changed because of a prophecy.
  • Saffican – The orange of unknown sunrises.

– Steve


Posted on by Steven Savage

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, www.SeventhSanctum.com, and Steve’s Tumblr)

I’ve been thinking of how I organize my projects and share them with you my audience and friends.  I’ve not been thrilled with how I’ve done updates, and recent spates of illness and surprises derailed a few things.  So what I’m doing is taking my projects to be managed much more traditional Scrum style.  I got the idea here from Failbetter’s use of Agile to make them publicly engaged via blogposts while doing Sunless Skies.

If you’re not familiar with Scrum,, its basically a method of organization where you A) keep a backlog of stuff to do B) do it in small increments called sprints, and C) regularly report and measure progress.  I recommend reading up on it.

(I’m still big on the Getting Things Done method, and will use it as part of my work, but my large amount of longer-term projects require some different approaches plus this lets me try out techniques from work.)

What this means for you is

  1. Every month (a “sprint”) I’ll tell you what I’m planning to tackle on my projects.  Most Sprints are two weeks, but I plan my projects quarterly/monthly so this is a bit easier.
  2. I’ll do weekly reports (a sort of Standup) on progress. These are usually daily in proper Scrum, but I have my limits.
  3. I’ll do a roundup/retrospective at the end.

So what’s up for April!

Finishing The Color Generator: I’ll finish the Color Generator in April with the goal of deploying before the end of the Month – preferably mid-month.  I’ll be regularly updating it with new data so keep an eye out.

New Seventh Sanctum Spotlight: A new Seventh Sanctum project to spotlight talent and interesting media – this is an experiment and may or may not succeed.

Way With Worlds Minibooks #1: The followups to Way With Worlds.  I will send this to editor – remember these don’t launch until June.

Way With Worlds Minibook #5: Get this to at least 60% completion if not more.  And, yes I have four of these suckers written already – make room in your summer reading!

There are also some marketing efforts, tech purchases, and home maintenance but I don’t think you care about those.

So I’ll be posting updates weekly (probably Monday) to let you know where everything is once a week!

And as it’s Sunday, let’s get to a status!

What I’ve worked on:

  • Wrote 5 more questions on Minibook 5.
  • Minibook #1 will be in the hands of the editor next week.
  • Reached out to initial “promotables” for the Sanctum Spotlight and designed how it’ll run.  It’s pretty much ready to go, I’ll start it later this month.
  • A few notes on the Color Generator are in place, I’ll dive into that more soon.

What’s coming up this week:

  • I plan to focus on the Color Generator to get as much done as possible.
  • I’ll be attending two professional events, so that consumes time.

– Steve


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&nbps;

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