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    Canonfire :: View topic - OJ 17...and Beyond!
    Canonfire Forum Index -> The Oerth Journal
    OJ 17...and Beyond!
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    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Jul 12, 2001
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    Tue Jul 12, 2005 5:53 pm  
    OJ 17...and Beyond!

    So. I think it's clear the Oerth Journal needs a little reworking, starting with a schedule and a staff...preferably made up of single, childless, socially isolated college students studying english literature and obsessed with D&D, yet open-minded and accepting of various Greyhawk eras and opinions.

    That's a joke, people. Sorta.

    We either need someones with no life, or serious commitments and a larger number of reliable people to spread out the burden.

    Honestly, my smallest concern is scheduling. You set a date. What's done by then goes out. The OJ is electronic. We don't have required page counts. I'd rather see 25 pages every 4 months than 100 pages every 12 months.

    There should be an art director. A layout person. Multiple editors. And an editor-in-chief who co-ordinates and directs.

    OK. More input!

    Stone endures,
    Nell.
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

    Joined: Dec 09, 2002
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    Tue Jul 12, 2005 7:28 pm  

    OK I'm gonna throw some ideas here.

    First to keep fresh with the new editions. Maybe someone could convert old GH NPC's, magic items, and monsters to the new edition. Maybe with a brief description and their references.

    Second, for articles. I would tag a few ppl from here. GVD, mortellan, CruelSummerLord and many more could come up with a lot of new material or review old material.

    Now, most importantly for editors and art I would ask around but Cebrion and Don are both very good at these things. If asked they may be able to lend a hand.
    For art, I think adding mortellans comics into an Oerth Journal would be wonderful. They're GH, they're funny, popular, and its publishing credits for mort.
    As for choosing all these editors well. I think ppl need to be asked first. Then things can move along a little more.
    A few suggestions are...

    Samwise - canon issues
    Mortellan - art director and comic man!
    Cebrion - content editor
    Dethand?/ myself/ or anyone else versed in 3.5e - 3.5e rules edits
    Don - Editor-in-Chief
    _________________
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    -Rick "Duicarthan" Miller
    Editor-in-Chief, Oerth Journal
    http://www.oerthjournal.com http://www.greyhawkonline.com/duicarthan
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Wed Jul 13, 2005 2:16 pm  
    Ahem

    >First to keep fresh with the new editions. Maybe someone could convert old GH NPC's, magic items, and monsters to the new edition. Maybe with a brief description and their references. <

    I would be extremely disappointed with Oerth Journal if, like Dragon and Dungeon magazines, our fanzine imitated them in becoming specific to the current editions named D&D. If anyone really wants to convert material to these editions, Canonfire and Greytalk would be better forums for it than using up space in the Oerth Journal. OJ submissions should be material that everyone can use, regardless of edition.

    >Second, for articles. I would tag a few ppl from here. GVD, mortellan, CruelSummerLord and many more could come up with a lot of new material or review old material. <

    I just find this thinking abhorent that Oerth Journal is so desperate for articles that it must start soliciting submissions rather than accepting them. If people feel more comfortable or just prefer submitting their articles to Canonfire than to Oerth Journal, I guess that's fine, yet where is our fan community's pride in Oerth Journal if it is not receiving submissions?

    >Now, most importantly for editors and art I would ask around but Cebrion and Don are both very good at these things. If asked they may be able to lend a hand.<

    I can help edit articles for spelling and grammar issues, but would be useless with the technical aspects of an electronic publication. I wish I could help more, but I'm one of those people Nell complained about having a life. Confused

    >For art, I think adding mortellans comics into an Oerth Journal would be wonderful. They're GH, they're funny, popular, and its publishing credits for mort. <

    Those would be great if we were going for the look of the old Dragon magazines. While that would be an enjoyable thing, it might clash with the faux-scholarly nature of Oerth Journal.

    ~Scott C.


    Last edited by Scottenkainen on Wed Jul 13, 2005 3:55 pm; edited 1 time in total
    Adept Greytalker

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    Wed Jul 13, 2005 2:28 pm  

    To be clear, while I think prompt and efficient release of the OJ is the smallest hurdle, it's also the most important. Frequent releases means frequent visibility, and all good things flow from there.

    And for the records, the faux scholarly nature of the OJ can go hang, IMO. I think it's a place for well-written and interesting pieces concerning Greyhawk. Long, short, funny, serious...as long as they're interesting.

    Cheers
    Nell.
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    Wed Jul 13, 2005 3:42 pm  

    Quote:
    And for the records, the faux scholarly nature of the OJ can go hang, IMO. I think it's a place for well-written and interesting pieces concerning Greyhawk. Long, short, funny, serious...as long as they're interesting.


    Fully agree with you there Nell. I do agree with Scott's views somewhat on converting things to the current edition. Did you mean for everything or just selected topics at random? Or would the plan be to solicit those type articles as well as earlier editions? Im not a 3.5 player myself so if things were going to be just 3.5 then OJ probably wouldnt appeal to me as much as it does now. Id still download it though!! I like your ideas of tapping those who are here at canonfire for editing, reviewing and submitting work for OJ.

    Maraudar
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

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    Wed Jul 13, 2005 5:30 pm  

    By no means did I intend that the whole OJ become a rallying board for 3.5e or whatever edition is out. What I did mean is that it could have a single monthly/ bi-monthly article with a converted monster/ magic item, etc...

    I refer to articles that were in the LGJ for a while. I was thinking a single monster, item, etc... detailed out and with the 3.5e data at the end for those who want it.

    A few good examples on CF are the previous postfest on magic. The Talisman of Zagy or things of that nature. Something with enough flavor and story text to make it useful but might not require a 3.5e statblock at the end, if it does need converted, convert it for those who "might" want it.

    Small, simple, and up to date. All things that keep us in a fresh persepective.
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    -Rick "Duicarthan" Miller
    Editor-in-Chief, Oerth Journal
    http://www.oerthjournal.com http://www.greyhawkonline.com/duicarthan
    Adept Greytalker

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    Wed Jul 13, 2005 5:35 pm  

    Maraudar wrote:
    Quote:
    And for the records, the faux scholarly nature of the OJ can go hang, IMO. I think it's a place for well-written and interesting pieces concerning Greyhawk. Long, short, funny, serious...as long as they're interesting.


    Fully agree with you there Nell. I do agree with Scott's views somewhat on converting things to the current edition. Did you mean for everything or just selected topics at random?


    Conversion articles were Dui's suggestion, not mine. As a goal unto themselves, conversion articles probably aren't a great idea (though I was going to convert a number of 2e speciality priests to 3e prestige classes...) unless new (fluff) material is added. It's all about keeping it interesting.

    I'm all for having "theme issues" and recruiting authors, though. I got a few articles by going out and banging on doors, so to speak. A "theme issue" (like Dragons or Elves or Magic), btw, shouldn't be about excluding articles, but rather a tool to generate more articles. As a writer I certainly like having ideas handed to me -- one less thing to do!

    That said, a 3e conversion topic here on CF would be nice.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Thu Jul 14, 2005 6:01 am  

    Nellisir wrote:
    To be clear, while I think prompt and efficient release of the OJ is the smallest hurdle, it's also the most important. Frequent releases means frequent visibility, and all good things flow from there.

    And for the records, the faux scholarly nature of the OJ can go hang, IMO. I think it's a place for well-written and interesting pieces concerning Greyhawk. Long, short, funny, serious...as long as they're interesting.

    Cheers
    Nell.


    I agree with Nellisir in the above. Smile

    More frequent OJs are I think Priority No. 1. Visibility is vital. The size of the OJ is not as important. If quarterly OJs are only 25 pages, I'd prefer that to a 100 page OJ that only appears in 12+ months. This would also make editing any one issue less onerous.

    While there is something to be said for "faux scholarship," I think the OJ has gone too far down that road and, part of the reason there are not more submissions, is that a lot of people are put off by the appearence of "snooty-ness." Well, that and the thought that the OJ takes forever, see above - "visibility."

    I think soliciting submissions/authors is part of running any periodical. IMO, one of the problems with Dragon/Dungeon is that its submission guidelines amount to little more that - "You propose something to us." That's fine but but a periodical should also seek out specific types of submissions/authors.

    Beyond aspirational goals, I agree with Duicarthan that the OJ needs to make known its staff, so people know who they can approach about what with some hope of seeing results from the contact. Making known publication and editing schedules would also be important.

    On the editing front, I would suggest a specific process -

    Step 1 - Article is submitted, having been spell checked and proofread by author prior to submission. Proofreading should specifically focus on completing thoughts and organization of presentation for maximum reader comprehension.

    Step 2 - Article is reviewed by OJ Editor-in-Chief for publishability

    Step 3 - Article is edited by Editor No. 1

    Step 4 - Article is edited by Editor No. 2

    Step 5 - Article is final edited by OJ Editor-in-Chief or his/her designate.

    Steps 3 and 4 edits are executed simultaneously, saving time and making Step 5 easier.

    Edits are understood not to be rewrites. Only authors execute rewrites. A rewrite may be requested by the Editor-in-Chief at either Step 2 or Step 5, if necessary. Outright rejections should not be the norm; rather, authors should be encouraged to rewrite.

    Some thoughts.
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    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Thu Jul 14, 2005 7:27 am  
    Hmm...

    >And for the records, the faux scholarly nature of the OJ can go hang, IMO.<

    This seems a dangerous comment to me. The scholary-ness (gosh, that's not a word -- what word am I groping for there?) of Oerth Journal is, besides the Greyhawk-only content, what distinguishes it from other gaming fanzines out there. Yes, timeliness and making sure new issues are "out there" should be the number one goal, but perhaps number two should be making sure Oerth Journal maintains a unique and consistent identity.

    That said, maybe we should get into specifics about goal #1. Is the Oerth Journal staff ready to accept submissions for the next issue already? Should I be getting to work on that?

    ~Scott C.
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    Thu Jul 14, 2005 9:32 am  

    Sorry about that Nell. End of the work day when I posted that which means I was getting punchy Happy .


    Quote:
    More frequent OJs are I think Priority No. 1. Visibility is vital. The size of the OJ is not as important. If quarterly OJs are only 25 pages, I'd prefer that to a 100 page OJ that only appears in 12+ months. This would also make editing any one issue less onerous.



    Fully agree with you there Glen..


    Maraudar / Pat
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    Thu Jul 14, 2005 9:34 am  

    I've started to work on the cover...
    CF Admin

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    Thu Jul 14, 2005 10:17 am  

    'Ware and 'were, friend.

    The OJ FAQ (perhaps now out-dated) is available at http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=FAQ&myfaq=yes&id_cat=4&categories=The+Oerth+Journal%3Cp%3E.

    The now three-years-old contribution guidelines are available at http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Sections&op=viewarticle&artid=394. Note that Andy Seale is the current Editor-in-Chief of the OJ, with Nathan Irving, a.k.a. Nellisir, being the Assistant Editor-in-Chief.

    It's also worth noting that Ron Carey has been the OJ's art director, or at least been its principal illustrator for the past several years (going back into the late volume I issues when Nellisir and Rick LaRue were the principal editors of the OJ). Ron also apparently produced the cover of OJ 16 and has been the one who transforms the various DOCs into a single, well-laid out PDF although someone else may have done so under Andy's leadership.

    I note the foregoing simply to provide relative late-comers with some pertinent background information. Below I make seven points and then sort of riff into an exposition of my ideas about the OJ's near future.

    First, I'm delighted that the OJ was produced once again! Since retiring from the OJ and the online Greyhawk community, I've studied law and became involved in the production of legal scholarship. Volunteer publishing with high production standards is a significant project. It's not quite herding cats, but the OJ lacks the institutional capacity to facilitate timely or regular production.

    Second, I agree whole-heartedly with Nathan and others that the OJ requires a group of GH fans who are dedicated to its regular production, and someone from this group, likely the EiC, should update the various online GH communities with some regularity. Jason Zavoda understood this necessity, but I chose not to follow his example because I disliked the style of his "The Oerth Journal Speaks" posts. However, it's now clear to me that it is better to communicate with the online community than not. Even saying, "Hey, we're still in production," could be useful, since it might motivate the current crew to work assiduously or even stimulate new volunteers.

    Third, the OJ needs its own website. I imagine a relatively simple, HTML site (or maybe a blog) that is linked to CF! and provides regular updates, along with a simple mechanism for submitting queries and articles. The new OJ website should also conspicuously post the current submission guidelines.

    Fourth, I appreciate Duicarthan's list of potential editors for the OJ. The CF! community is vibrant, and I wish I could engage it today. The Postfests and ongoing posts seem fantastic and generally well-imagined and written. (I especially like the suggestion that Mortellan's comic strip be published in the OJ.) To me, one of the centers of online GH fandom is CF, and Duicarthan's list names a good set of the current "hot" producers.

    Fifth, I agree with the folks who suggested that the OJ should solicit manuscripts/submissions. This need not be seen as pandering, Scott. The OJ's lack of regular production and the diffusion of GH fans suggests that the OJ should be regularly promoted in the various (and numerous) relevant online fora. People tend to respect the OJ even when they critique its lack of regular production.

    Sixth, I suggest the starting goal of bi-annual production because quarterly production seems clearly beyond "our" capacity. If folks plan to produce just two issues in 2006, then the OJ would be well on its way toward regular production.

    Seventh, I hear what people are saying about the faux-scholarship (in the 12th century Thomas Aquinas sense) of the OJ and suspect that I helped propagate it. The OJ is quasi-scholarly, but this is somewhat a tongue-in-cheek joke. It's part of the enjoyment of our strange hobby, which blends entertainment and education with disregard for conventional (and legal) distinctions. The Acaeum is a great example of this point, for collection of 1e AD&D products is arcane, yet there are people who study these publications with the zeal of true bibliophiles. See http://www.acaeum.com/.

    To the degree that people feel/felt excluded by this facade, I feel remorse. To me the illusion of scholarship remains appealing, and indeed when I first encountered the online GH community (AOL in 1998 and GreyTalk in 1999), in part I used GH to help me comprehend various theories and concepts of social science.

    In fact, I once drafted a long essay regarding "entertainment and enlightenment" (in response to a stimulating post by Aria13--one of our "lost sages"). I recently discovered that Ursula K. Le Guin published a couple more Earthsea books. I mention these seemingly irrelevant points because I've come to believe that GH fans are some of the people who braid together learning about Earthly myths, legends and histories with imaginative engagement beyond the limits of our societies.

    At our best, we tell meaningful stories, together.

    While this point of view may seem tangential to some readers, this is the crux of my post: GH provides opportunities for people to gather together in pleasureable and informative formations. The OJ, like CF!, provides a distillation of those experiences and the opportunity to fix one's point of view.

    I'd love if some of the currently active posters would consider consolidating some of their posts into an OJ article (or a series of such). For example, Mortellan's Ull is phenomenal and a lovely addition to such past works as AshtarX's series of Bakluni religion posts (on GT) and NiteScreed's (or however his handle is spelled) version of Ket, or a number of other works (Fred's LGJ version of Zeif comes to mind) that help constitute the living corpus of fan-created "Alternate Oerths."

    Similarly, Jared, a.k.a. the Cruel Summer Lord, has posted a significant set of CF! articles that inscribe his vision of Oerik and its sister continents. Likewise, GVD has prolifically described the development of literature and written history.

    A host of other articles, of which I'm now ignorant, have also been posted, and IMO, collecting, revising as appropriate, and supplementing them with illustration and layout would be a worthwhile project--well appreciated by other fans.

    While I cannot currently commit to joining such an endeavor, I add my voice to those who invoke the next group of OJ editors, authors, and illustrators.

    Paz y luz,

    MTG


    Last edited by mtg on Sat Jul 16, 2005 5:21 pm; edited 1 time in total
    Adept Greytalker

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    Fri Jul 15, 2005 7:53 pm  

    BTW, a small thought I had was the cover style of OJ 16 could be reused for later issues, but in different colors and different center images. One less thing to stress about, and really--- who doesn't want a copy of the Oerth Journal in blue dragonskin?

    Cheers
    Nell.
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    Sun Jul 17, 2005 7:56 pm  

    Wow, my name dropped twice in the same post. Ya I want to consolodate the Ull articles, maybe OJ is the place to do it? Who knows? My comic? That would be a serious change of format and at the current publishing rate a comic strip wouldn't hold much momentum. Interior art would spruce up stuff though. I cant recall offhand if any of the other OJ's have interior art.
    Adept Greytalker

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    Wed Jul 20, 2005 4:08 am  

    never mind
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

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    Fri Jul 22, 2005 8:13 am  

    Nellisir wrote:
    BTW, a small thought I had was the cover style of OJ 16 could be reused for later issues, but in different colors and different center images. One less thing to stress about, and really--- who doesn't want a copy of the Oerth Journal in blue dragonskin?


    Nellisir, I like the ideas actually. A whole set of chromatic dragon skinned issues would be wonderful. We could do a white/ice issue for December/ Jan that way if we wanted as well. Themes are a good thing!
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    Sat Jul 23, 2005 9:56 am  

    Yes there has been interior art in prior editions. If we can't remember if prior OJs had interior art then perhaps it wasn't memorable. Maybe (memorable) art could spruce it up but I think regularity may be priority #1.

    As for the Chromo skinned issues, I do like that.
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Sat Jul 23, 2005 3:42 pm  

    Cebrion contemplates swirling his toes in the dark waters of OJ.

    Nellisir: "C'mon in! That's the shallow end, but watch that first step!(hehe)".

    Happy

    Anyways, all the ideas described so far sound pretty good. The most recent OJ is pretty impressive. I'd be interested in helping out. There is a pretty solid community here to help out with such a project.
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    Tue Jul 26, 2005 7:06 am  

    Yes I know the answer is probably in an FAQ somewhere, but who has time to read them. :)

    If for example, I had about 12,000 words on Kalstrand along with a map (which needs pretty-fying), who would I in theory send it to if I wanted it to be considered for inclusion in OJ 17?

    P.
    Hypothetically of course... :)
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Tue Jul 26, 2005 12:40 pm  
    Man!

    I sure could have used such a hypothetical document a year ago! I couldn't find anything to raid for details on Kalstrand except a few snippets in Return to the Tomb of Horrors and an ezboard campaign! :(

    ~Scott C.
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    Tue Jul 26, 2005 1:46 pm  

    Woesinger wrote:
    Yes I know the answer is probably in an FAQ somewhere, but who has time to read them. :)

    If for example, I had about 12,000 words on Kalstrand along with a map (which needs pretty-fying), who would I in theory send it to if I wanted it to be considered for inclusion in OJ 17?

    P.
    Hypothetically of course... :)


    Duicarthan.
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    Tue Jul 26, 2005 6:58 pm  

    yup, I'm the one you need to talk to. Email me what you have and a proposal at duicarthan (at) hotmail (dot) com, and I'll give it a look over. =)
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    Fri Jul 29, 2005 11:32 am  
    Re: Ahem

    Scottenkainen wrote:

    I would be extremely disappointed with Oerth Journal if, like Dragon and Dungeon magazines, our fanzine imitated them in becoming specific to the current editions named D&D. If anyone really wants to convert material to these editions, Canonfire and Greytalk would be better forums for it than using up space in the Oerth Journal. OJ submissions should be material that everyone can use, regardless of edition.


    I agree strongly with Scott on this point.

    I've only been a D&D player for about 9 months, but I was brought into the fold with Classic, or Basic if you prefer, D&D. I've looked at the other editions here and there, and really have no desire to play them. There's enough similarity between all the editions that I can easily convert things I want to use.

    Reading over the new OJ submission guidelines, I get the impression that there is a desire to have all articles submitted using the current edition of D&D. While out of print editions are allowed, it is mentioned that conversion notes to the current edition "may be added". Seeing the intense dislike of 3rd edition D&D that is common on other fora focused on the out of print lines, it's my feeling that such a leaning toward that system will only discourage fans of the others to not participate, and for the ezine to thrive, as much participation as possible is needed.

    Like Scott suggested, a companion Canonfire article or forum thread (isn't that what the Reader Workshop forum folder is for?) seems to be a better option for providing conversions. This maintains the integrity of the author by keeping their article in the spirit in which it was written, and also saves the ezine from being cluttered with numerous conversion appendices and addendums.
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

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    Fri Jul 29, 2005 1:00 pm  

    Guess ya missed that all editions are welcome in caps. But oh well. Firstyl, you must understand the point of view here. I'd love to have everyone submit and have teh ability to have things converted for everyones use.

    However, if the author explicitly states they dont want to be converted they won't be, end of story. Now if they don't care, we'll offer Conversion notes or a converted version.

    Now most importantly, the fans of Greyhawk have always stood strong over the years. But in the last few years, the quibles over editions and version has been the breaking point amongst us all. There are advocates on all sides.
    What I have been proposing is that even though we may have 3.5e data, 2e data or whatever. It will ALL be Greyhawk, and you can take that to the bank.

    Its my opinion, that if we don't support Greyhawk in ANY edition its in. It will disappear, then you will only have OOP books to go by. Which over the years will dwindle and eventually become so rare they will either all be in electronic format or rare collectors items only. I ask that everyone be patient in judging one edition over another and support GH for what it is. Failing that, don't complain when it is completely gone b/c you helped it get that way. I'm not asking you to jump on a bandwagon or to like everything thats printed, I'm asking you to support Greyhawk, that is all.

    Cheerz,

    Rick "Duicarthan" Miller
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    Fri Jul 29, 2005 2:42 pm  

    Darva wrote:
    Seeing the intense dislike of 3rd edition D&D that is common on other fora (forums?) focused on the out of print lines, it's my feeling that such a leaning toward that system will only discourage fans of the others to not participate, and for the ezine to thrive, as much participation as possible is needed.


    Editions aside, the real content of the OJ should always be about Greyhawk and about the world of Greyhawk. Even if an edition specific peice is printed then it should contain a healthy dose of Greyhawk for fans of the setting no matter what edition they play. Making the OJ a fanzine of older editions only is as a great a sin as making it only a 3e mouthpiece. If you play a different edition and find an article that you like written in another edition, you can roll up your sleeves and convert it to your prefered edition, no matter what system you use to play in Greyhawk.
    If on the other hand the OJ wants to become more useful to the widest majority of GH players and DM's then it needs to consider what edition best serves it. If you say that Dragon or Dungeon covers the current edition well enough then you have to look at how they cover GH, not that well and infrequent. So if you are going to make a publication that appeals to the widest majority of players then keeping to the current edition is the best bet. 3e is the system that most use to play in GH and OJ probably needs to focus on it a bit more, but never to the exclusion of older stuff as long as it contains good GH lore and information that can be used or inserted in any GH campaign. Which it has done well in the past.
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    Fri Jul 29, 2005 6:20 pm  

    Duicarthan wrote:
    Guess ya missed that all editions are welcome in caps. But oh well.


    Beg your pardon, but I didn't miss anything, look at what I wrote:

    Darva wrote:
    Reading over the new OJ submission guidelines, I get the impression that there is a desire to have all articles submitted using the current edition of D&D. While out of print editions are allowed, it is mentioned that conversion notes to the current edition "may be added".


    This is the feedback forum right? If you're open to feedback, then I'll offer it, if not, please let me know so I can move on to other things.
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

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    Fri Jul 29, 2005 8:30 pm  

    Darva wrote:
    Duicarthan wrote:
    Guess ya missed that all editions are welcome in caps. But oh well.


    Beg your pardon, but I didn't miss anything, look at what I wrote:

    Darva wrote:
    Reading over the new OJ submission guidelines, I get the impression that there is a desire to have all articles submitted using the current edition of D&D. While out of print editions are allowed, it is mentioned that conversion notes to the current edition "may be added".


    This is the feedback forum right? If you're open to feedback, then I'll offer it, if not, please let me know so I can move on to other things.


    You're taking humor seriously. =P relax a bit.
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    Master Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 30, 2005 9:56 am  

    The whole intent of something like the OJ is sharing material.
    If someone is so fundamentally opposed to those they are sharing it with converting it to another edition, then perhaps they are in the wrong place.
    If anyone objects to conversion notes being included in an article, then I think the article should be rejected. The current edition of the game is 3.5. People need to accept that, and accept that material produced should include that format, either with conversion, or as the default standard.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 30, 2005 1:21 pm  

    Samwise wrote:
    The current edition of the game is 3.5. People need to accept that, and accept that material produced should include that format, either with conversion, or as the default standard.


    I don't see what bearing this has on Greyhawk at all. Can you please point us to the catalog of 3.5th edition Greyhawk products?

    How insisting Greyhawk fans conform their writings to a game system they do not play promotes sharing is beyond me.
    Master Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 30, 2005 2:20 pm  

    Greyhawk is a Dungeons and Dragons campaign setting.
    The Dungeons and Dragons rules system is currently only published in the 3.5 version.
    The vast majority of new players of the Dungeons and Dragons game will be players of the 3.5 system.
    The only readily available, and still reasonably priced, version of the Greyhawk setting was published under the 3E rules system, which is close enough to the 3.5 system.

    If some people refuse to accept this reality, I don't worry about changing them. But if the OJ is to be relevant, it needs to be current. That means having any rules material be in the current 3.5 format. And if WotC comes out with 4E, then it means converting to 4E. You might not be aware, but I've already mentioned working on a template for the new NPC/monster format that WotC looks to be switching to with the DMG II.

    How insisting your material not be readily usable by the growing segment of Greyhawk fans can ever promote sharing is totally beyond me. Or how calling for allowing such conversion is insisting that all submissions conform is ever further beyond me.
    And that is why I would not consider it any great loss if they upped and went elsewhere because the OJ had a policy of putting everything into 3.5, but having a section for conversion.

    Of course, this is a feedback forum. If you aren't open to feedback from others, then let me know so you can move on to other things.
    Adept Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 30, 2005 4:40 pm  

    Samwise wrote:

    And that is why I would not consider it any great loss if they upped and went elsewhere because the OJ had a policy of putting everything into 3.5


    You can breath easy, with the reaction here, I don't exactly see producers of OOP edition material lining up to beg for publication in OJ.
    Then again, I speak only for myself, I wont try and enforce my preferred edition on this site as a whole, or on the OJ. Neither was created with being edition specific in mind,
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    Tue Aug 02, 2005 7:26 am  

    IMO.

    The OJ should be "edition neutral" much as Canonfire is "edition neutral."
    Leave it to individual authors what edition, if any, they wish to work in.

    Wrangling about "conversions" is, to me, a great way to sidetrack and wreck the OJ under its new management. Leave it to the authors and everything will move on apace. Don't try to fix what is not broken - ALL EDITIONS SHOULD BE WELCOME AT THE AUTHORS' DISCRETION.

    IMO
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    Tue Aug 02, 2005 11:10 am  

    chatdemon wrote:
    You can breath easy, with the reaction here, I don't exactly see producers of OOP edition material lining up to beg for publication in OJ.
    Then again, I speak only for myself, I wont try and enforce my preferred edition on this site as a whole, or on the OJ. Neither was created with being edition specific in mind,


    Since when have producers of any edition material lined up to beg for pubication in OJ?
    You presume a significance way out of proportion to the relevance to the edition. And thus you would out both sources of material, and a potential audience.

    And by refusing to allow material to be converted when posted, you are enforcing a preferred edition on the OJ.
    Every publication needs standards for its content. You might note that the professional magazines only accept 3.5 content, and won't include conversion material at all.
    Master Greytalker

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    Tue Aug 02, 2005 2:53 pm  

    That last post is from me. I didn't realize I wasn't logged in.
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Wed Aug 03, 2005 4:49 pm  
    Uh-uh

    Sam wrote:
    >The vast majority of new players of the Dungeons and Dragons game will be players of the 3.5 system. <

    That's their loss. There is no good reason why it should be the entire body of Greyhawk fans' loss too.

    ~Scott C.
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    Wed Aug 03, 2005 11:25 pm  
    Re: Uh-uh

    How is playing a certain edition a loss to the GH community?
    Is 1st edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons the edition of choice? Is Second Edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, the preference that GH'ers ask for by name? Not that it matters, because in the end each group of players and DM's are going to play the way they want and under what editions/rules they like or prefer. What is important is how GH is presented in the OJ, if the material has good GH content its probably going to get in, regardless of edtions or whatnot. But I want to say, if a conversion is needed then I think we can do it easily if the people posting here show half that energy in a more positive manner than simply bashing editions.
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    Thu Aug 04, 2005 6:52 am  
    No simple bashing here

    Though I have made my position plain in plenty of other places, my last post here did not specifically state it. So here it is -- no one edition is good for Greyhawk. Greyhawk needs to be bigger than just 3E D&D players or 3.5 D&D players or Runequest players. Sticking to game mechanics from one edition alienates all other players. Even if Mr. Miller had taken the opposite tact and said "Greyhawk is all about 1st ed. AD&D, so only 1st ed. AD&D mechanics will be published in Oerth Journal,"* I would still have opposed it. Mechanics-less articles are the way for Greyhawk to go. Mechanics of anyone's edition of choice can be hacked out later on Greytalk or Canonfire, or done at home by the individual reader.

    That said, I am pleased to see in Mr. Miller's guidelines that articles will not be turned down expressly for lack of current edition content and that the author has the option of rejecting its addition.

    *Of course, I secretly wish this was so and I would not be able to summon quite as much enthusiasm to fight it...

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    Master Greytalker

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    Fri Aug 05, 2005 9:18 am  

    Sticking to one edition does not by default alienate all other players.
    It alienates only those so consumed by their own hatred of other editions that they go into a spitting frenzy at the mere suggestion that material appear in another format.
    And I say those people are not needed, no matter what the other quality of their work might be.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Sat Aug 06, 2005 6:45 pm  

    Quote:
    Sticking to one edition does not by default alienate all other players.
    It alienates only those so consumed by their own hatred of other editions that they go into a spitting frenzy at the mere suggestion that material appear in another format.
    And I say those people are not needed, no matter what the other quality of their work might be.


    True to a point Sam. But it could lose a percentage of a fan base that it didnt need to. And what publication whether free or not wants to do that?

    Your second statement is more precise. There are those that are rabid haters of the newer edition and if they are so concerned about their material being converted then they shouldnt submit anything. But what of those who arent that way but prefer that their material be presented in the edition that it was submitted without conversion? They are simply targetting something for a segment of the fan base that likes that edition. The same way that another would put out something for those that use the current edition. It is simply appealing to the various segments of the base instead of the whole.

    OJ is for Greyhawk fans regardless of edition so why limit it to the current edition when not everyone plays it? Spread it out among all editions. I think it would be richer publication for that.


    Maraudar
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

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    Sat Aug 06, 2005 8:56 pm  

    I think everyone has hit on it, but missed the basis of what I stated earlier. The problem we face is a double-edged sword. If we print for all editions, we have to include about a 4 page conversion guide for each one (OD&D, 1st ed, 2nd ed, 3e, 3.5e) which can be a real pain. Now on the other we face the dilemma that if an article comes in that is only we'll say 1st ed. while thats GREAT, we're also putting off the other readers who might require for the material to be in another edition.

    I've proposed the conversion to 3.5e only b/c its the present edition, this means we may have a small section on how the editioned pieces would be converted, but it won't affect the article as a whole on its content, b/c this section goes at the end of the article and can be skipped past if you dont use it. Let me be clear that we will convert up to 3.5e, but converting down is a waste of time and resources. Not that I wouldnt like to...its just not feasible. Sorry =/

    I think what really is the problem is the edtions not the content of whats in the article and hence thats the only change I encourage the editors to discuss with the author. If the author chooses to place a 1e article in and refuses to have it converted, its in their right and honestly much less work for us. But at the same time, said author also alienates any other game mechanics in his article to those who might wish to use it.

    In conclusion, the primary factors a bove everything, is that the OJ requires content over rules/ editions and thats what I am pushing for. We'll take the nuetral road, but we aren't going to pander to any specific edition. Contrary to what you might read in the templates, those are templates not a binding spell for your article, use them if you need them, or don't. Either way they are there to help guide you through the process. =)
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    Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:42 am  

    Samwise wrote:
    Sticking to one edition does not by default alienate all other players.
    It alienates only those so consumed by their own hatred of other editions that they go into a spitting frenzy at the mere suggestion that material appear in another format.
    And I say those people are not needed, no matter what the other quality of their work might be.


    Sam, I think you are getting too attached to a personal argument here and need to step back for a perspective check.

    I don't hate 3rd edition. I simply don't know it and have never played it. I have no desire to learn it simply to contribute to OJ. Requiring that all submissions be in 3rd edition (which is not the policy) would lose me as a contributor, and I don't think that I am alone. I don't think that publishing material in older edtions, with or without conversion notes, would lose any readers.

    To say that certain contributors or certain readers are "not needed" strikes me as going against the current effort to get more visability to the OJ. And the postion you seem to be arguing for is more restrctive than that proposed by the actual editor of the OJ.


    If I understand Duicarthan, the primary focus should be on Greyhawk content. That's great. (and lots of fluff is editionless). For crunch submissions, any edition is accepted. Saying 3.5 is preferred may be true - I'm sure it would be preferred by the editors in charge of conversion notes - but it lacks much consequence. If an author does not wish to do the conversions him or herself, the editors will do conversion notes, and the author must accept that this will considerably slow the acceptance of the submission. If an author is UNWILLING to have any kind of conversion notes attached to the article, that may be reason for rejecting the submission.

    I don't think there is anything in this policy that Darva was objecting to - I believe she was misunderstanding the actual function of the too-polemic word "preferred". And if there is something in the policy that YOU object to, you should take it up with YOUR editor in chief.

    Shanti,

    Kirt
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    Mon Aug 08, 2005 6:33 am  

    If I were to submit something to the OJ, I would very likely avoid anything having to do with stats, be it monsters or NPCs etc., and these can bewritten up "stat free" more often than not. In such case, a "conversion" becomes practically irrelevant. Assuming others would pursue a similar course, and not many OJ articles are stat dominated, this issue is a tempest in a teapot, IMO.

    No one is suggesting, as far as I can tell, a forced "conversion" or "stating out" of material that does not involve stats to begin with. But if you stat it out in a prior edition, as I understand it, only then would a "conversion" be offered - in addition to, not in place of, the original stats from a prior edition that were submitted.
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    Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:15 am  

    I understand the situation. And others have summarized it nicely.

    As Duicarthan stated, a theoretical "best" method would be to present all stats for all editions. But while that is a nice concept, the time and space required would be prohibitive. Given that, a choice must be made. And given that the current edition is 3.5, selecting any other as the "default" would not be as good a choice.

    As for preferring material be presented in the format it is written for, it will be. The complaints are against ALSO providing a conversion.

    As for complaints that material will ONLY be accepted in one format, they won't be.

    So what is left as the likely cause of the complaints that remain?
    Obviously edition hatred.
    If I take that "personally", it is because too many of those that engage in it are overly committed to destroying any efforts at promoting the setting outside of their "version", and indeed I see no reason to indulge them. There are several places they can be indulged. Whether those groups put out something like the OJ is their problem.

    And yes, I would be more restrictive than Duicarthan intends to be. That is what I would do, and I am merely expressing my views on the matter. I don't see why anyone would take that so personally and get so upset.
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

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    Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:44 am  

    GVDammerung wrote:
    No one is suggesting, as far as I can tell, a forced "conversion" or "stating out" of material that does not involve stats to begin with. But if you stat it out in a prior edition, as I understand it, only then would a "conversion" be offered - in addition to, not in place of, the original stats from a prior edition that were submitted.



    You hit it right on the head, GVD. Good job man! 10,000 more pts for you =)
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    Tue Aug 09, 2005 1:06 pm  
    Like he needs more points!

    I'm still waiting to find out when we get to cash in our points for candy and small toys...

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