Monday, April 4, 2011

Spotlight (Simstorytellers on LJ)

Posted here because LJ is being a bitch. I might post it properly some time in the week if I can work up the patience to do so.

I'm not very active on LiveJournal, so I think a confusion warning might apply here. Also, there may be naughty language. And not many pictures compared to previous entries, unfortunately.


1. Tell us about yourself. (What you do for a living, your interests, where you live, your non-sim hobbies, etc.)

Well, for starters, my name is Van.

And yes, I took a picture of myself in my bathroom mirror. Lame, I know, but I'm kind of weird about other people taking pictures of me and therefore didn't have many to choose from.

I'm a twenty-year-old university sophomore. I'm a full-time student, but I'll probably be working odd jobs over the summer. Currently kid-free and single-ish. I write too much, swear too much, and I enjoy video games even though Sims is pretty much the only one I have access to right now. I'm left-brained, selectively meticulous, and Canadian.

They managed to fit all of us into one shot.

Born and raised in Calgary, currently living in Vancouver. I'm planning on doing a creative writing major, but they only take about twenty students a year, so we'll see about that. I don't really enjoy the classroom environment, so I'm hoping to just do the degree and get out. Not sure what I'll do if I don't get into the program, but I don't really want to think about that right now.

2. Do you have other creative pursuits that affect how you tell your sim stories? (Such as photography, creative writing, etc.)

Well, I've been writing since I was a kid, and I'm currently working on several offline, non-Sims writing projects as well. This is my main creative pursuit, since I'm not at all visual (as you might be able to tell from the relative lack of pictures in this interview--seriously, it only occurred to me last night that I needed a header) and about as coordinated as a beached whale. This probably shows in my writing. My novels are more descriptive out of necessity, but with the Sims stories, I kind of get lazy and use the pictures as a crutch--if you can see that Maru is a redhead, why would I say it? :P

(At the same time, however, I'm lazy with my pictures with the idea that I can compensate for that with the words. It's a paradox of infinite corner-cutting!)

I've acted in a few plays, mostly when I was in high school. I've been told that I have a nice singing voice, but I never really pursued it. I used to play tenor saxophone and bass guitar, and I play a little bit of piano by ear--but only the right hand part (told you I was uncoordinated).

3. Why did you start creating and posting sim stories?

Hmm. Well. I had Sims, but I was getting kind of bored with it, so I started looking for challenges. The first one I came across was the legacy, but I decided not to do one because A) I didn't want to limit myself to one family for ten generations and B) my mathematical, timeline-oriented brain would have exploded at the idea of some spare from generation two walking by the house with a youthful, freshly-transitioned-adult spring in their step and waving to the elderly head of the household, namely the great-great-great grandchild of the passerby's long dead sibling. Seriously, that sounds like a stroke waiting to happen for me.

I considered doing a prosperity challenge, but then I found the royal kingdom challenge and that was my introduction to CC. I downloaded all the Medieval stuff I could find, then me and my brother whipped up some sims and divided up the families. Of course, then we got frustrated waiting for the kids to grow up--so I started looking around, found InSim, and chaos ensued.

The idea of having so much control was great at first, but it took all the surprises out of the game and eventually lost its fun--but at the same time, it was now a painstaking task to send a Sim to use the toilet when you could just spawn the motives adjuster. So I started looking at RKC blogs to find some way to make it fun again. Two of the blogs I found were Lothere and Mhalwae, both of which had evolved into actual stories, and this kind of triggered a lightbulb in my head. "Hey... I love writing and I need to make Sims fun again! I'm going to write my own story!"

4. Do you use Maxis pre-made sims, original sims, sims based on other sources (TV, movies, books, other games), or some combination of these? Why?

Depends on the story. Obviously, with In Fair Veronaville, I'm using the Veronaville Sims, although I've distorted the hell out of their characters as Maxis intended.

Also, I changed some faces. What, he grew up to look completely unrecognizable!

The rest of my Sims are all original characters, although a lot of them--the Naroni founders, most of the Ashelia cast, the core group from This House Is Vegas--are recycled from previous offline works of mine.

5. How long does it take you to create a new CAS sim for a story? (If you create original sims, that is.)

Uh, well, that depends. If I don't have any specific look in mind, I'll usually just go with whatever CAS generates, tweak it for purposes of decent breeding potential, pick CC at random, and leave it at that. If I need a relative, it takes a little longer because I'll usually end up breeding a bunch of exported Sims to get a similar-but-not-identical Sim.

And then of course if I have a completely new character who isn't a relation, but whom I do have a certain look in mind for... well, that can take a while. Twenty minutes or so :S

6. Do you have one sim that frustrates you more than any of the others?

They all frustrate me. All of them.

(Easiest. Answer. Ever.)

7. Do your sims have their own theme songs?

Heh. You know, I sometimes think about this... but to be honest, none of them really do. Maybe it's because my characters are too freakishly specific for most songs. Or maybe it's just because I don't know shit about music :P

8. Do you like using aliens, vampires, zombies or any other non "normal" sims?

Uh, well... I'm only using the base game right now, so zombies and vampires aren't exactly an option for me at this point. As for aliens, I like seeing what other people do with them, but I don't use them in my stories and I really don't even have any other than the Strangetown premades. Some might pop up if I start actually playing again, but for now, I can't say I've really done much with the aliens.

Boring answer, I know :P

9. Do you usually create backstories for your sims?

Always, even when I wasn't writing and posting. I don't see how it's possible not to.

10. If it were possible, would you carry out "romantic interactions" with any of your sims?

Definitely not. While I do think some are more attractive than others, I can think of several good reasons why I wouldn't go there with any of them, even if they were real people.

Looking at my leading men would probably give you an indication of my type, though?

No trends here, folks...

11. Have you ever cried when a sim died? How emotionally attached are you to your sims?

Since I'm kind of a robot when it comes to all manner of fiction, I can't say that I have. I'm emotionally attached to them in some sense, I suppose, but I never cried over any when I was actually playing the game. Nowadays, since I'm just using the game for storytelling, I don't even kill off my "dead" Sims in-game, just in case I need them for a flashback or a dream sequence or whatnot.

12. Do you have a favorite character/family?

Not really? There are some I write about more than others, but it's not so much due to favoritism as it is to the place where the story happens to be just now. I have a ton of beloved characters who have been in the background for ages just because nothing noteworthy has been happening in their lives :(

13. Are there any stories in particular (sim or non-sim) that have inspired your storytelling?

Probably. From my experience, writers (and artists in general) are kind of inspiration leeches. I get inspiration from everywhere. Most of the time, I can't pinpoint where specifically. The two stories I mentioned earlier, Lothere and Mhalwae, were what inspired the format of Naroni, for sure, and then probably some of the prosaic masterpieces like Dragging Blue Lake inspired some of the (attempted) more in-depth writing.

I probably get little snippets of inspiration from every story I read. I can't give a full list here, but I have my reading list posted on all my story blogs (although I think the one on Naroni is the only up-to-date one?). Some haven't been updated in ages and some unfortunately never even got off the ground, but they're all on that list for a reason.

14. How do you decide on names for your sims?

Unless they've been recycled from a previous work? Random name generators.

(God, I have the most boring answers for all of these.)

15. Do you use hacks in your game? If so, which ones? How do they affect your stories?

Yep :) I couldn't function without InSim--instant maxed motives, instant relationships, instant pregnancies, etc. I also use InTeen, even though some people hate the concept. I have a few other miscellaneous hacks, such as Squinge's Hula and More, but I can't remember all of them off the top of my head.

In general, they just make picture-taking easier and more efficient. They kind of make gameplay too easy, though :(

16. Do you have a favourite EP/SP? Which expansion adds the most to storytelling for you?

Like I said earlier, I'm just using the base game XD

But I'd like to get Night Life for downtowns (I'm running out of space in my neighborhoods), Seasons for OMGSNOW, and maybe University for plastic surgery that doesn't require making a new Sim and then leaving the game to play with Sim PE.

17. Do you make your own custom content?

Rarely. Since I don't have a functional BodyShop (pre-Night Life BodyShop is borked), I can't create new clothing and hair files, but I've occasionally swapped some of the textures in previously existing files. Jadin's hair, for example. It's a Rose mesh that has both a male and female version, but all of the "reds" are kind of... um, pink. Anyway, Piggi made Nouked recolors for the female version, so I just stole the texture from that file and plugged it into one of the Rose reds and voila!

I can recolor objects, though? I recently put some recolors of the Feenwald saddle blankets up for download at the Medieval Sims forum. They're nothing great, but at least it's something.

18. Do you have a favourite sim outfit or hairstyle?

Well, I love iamliz13's alpha tunics (mesh by Tiggerypum). Seriously, most useful set of male clothing I've ever downloaded. I also love pretty much anything by sherahbim, although I wish her dresses came in more than one color.

For hairs... I don't know. There are some that I really love but wouldn't work on any of my Sims. There are others that I kind of hate, but use all the time. For the most part, I just go with what works for that particular Sim and it grows on me.

I love all of Almighty Hat's hair dumps of various meshes in Pooklet colors, but for the sake of my downloads folder I try to just nab the meshes I don't already have.

19. What are some things that you wish were included in the Sims games (2 or 3), but aren't? (For example - social interactions, the way sims interact with objects, etc.)

Well, for starters... less over-the-top chat animations, the ability to change Sim height in CAS and therefore animations that actually adjust for the height difference, the option of cancelling the newspaper subscription, the ability to use earlier flirt interactions for high-level couples, and the ability to remain friends with someone without having to call them every goddamn day.

Oh, and the ability to adjust the number of days left in the Sim's current life stage within CAS. I mean, seriously--a couple with three teenagers comes out of CAS on their first day of adulthood? Mathematically, that means they would have reproduced while in the child stage.

I probably have more, but those are the ones that immediately jump to mind.

Then again, maybe some of those things aren't problems with the later expansions? I wouldn't know.

20. How long does it usually take you to prepare a story update?

Not long. I'm so lazy with my photoshoots that actually taking out a posebox is a chore for me, so it's usually just a matter of making two Sims chat and waiting for appropriate-ish facial expressions. Add that to the fact that most of my posts only have a handful of images and the fact that I almost never take a shot unless I'm positive I'll need it, and photoshoots rarely take more than half an hour or so, excluding load times and any interruptions.

With the writing, since most of my posts are pretty short, probably about forty-five minutes to an hour on average--again, not counting distractions. All of my Sims stuff is first draft, so it never takes too long.

21. Show and tell: Please show us your workspace (a photograph, if possible, or just describe it), and tell us about the conditions you prefer to work in. Do you have any bizarre habits or rituals?

Bear in mind that this space is usually a lot messier. The picture is kind of old.

I'm not too picky with my work environment. My one requirement? Solitude. You know those people whose brains just stop working as soon as someone else walks into the room? I'm one of them.

22. Do you usually have your sims act to a pre-written script, just follow what they do, or some of both? what comes first - the text or the image? Is one of the elements more important than the other to you, or are they about equal?

I take the pictures first because given the limitations of the game, I figure it's easier to compensate for the pictures with the writing than the other way around. That being said, I do have a vague outline and I go into my photoshoots with a definite idea about what has to happen.

23. Can you give us any hints about what is coming up in your stories? (Oh, come on...)

Uh... well, other than the standard "Be prepared for crazy shit?" :P

Naroni: More on the Sparron/Searle front coming up, as well as the Ietrin/Jeda front. Someone new will be coming to Naroni soon. Also, keep your eye on Severin's daughter Viridis. Oh, and there's going to be a colossal suspension of disbelief required soon, but it's necessary for the sake of later developments.

Ashelia: Be prepared for a not-so-happy reunion. I imagine the rest of this installment of the series will be fairly brief, but there will be casualties. A certain somebody will be making a comeback soon.

IFV: We're coming up to another time jump after Chapter Eighty, but it won't be as drastic as the previous two--just a year or so in this case. Expect more Hal and Beatrice, more Juliette and Mercutio, and there is a distinct possibility that Albany will be stripped of his Karma Houdini status.

Orbis Umbra: Aurora's mind is about to be blown--soon. Like, maybe tonight if I can figure out what I want in the set (err, scratch that. No time for set building. Naroni instead). Boote's silent rebellion will continue and we'll eventually learn Scorpio's backstory. Naiara and Gwenaelle may be out of school, but they're not out of the story. Also, keep an eye on Ursula.

24. In your opinion, what makes a good sim story? What do you like to read in other people's stories?

I'm not picky. A good story is... well, a good story. An interesting plot with unique, three-dimensional characters is all I'm after, and as long as I get that, I don't worry too much about prose style or image quality. I just like to be entertained :)

25. How often do you check your flist to see if your favourite authors have updated?

Several times a day, unless I'm out and about--and it figures that it's on those days when people usually update, really :S

26. What advice would you give someone who wants to create a sim story?

1) Stressing about posing and lighting and the perfect CC is overrated. Yes, gorgeous, well-planned shots can enrich a story, but make sure you have a story first. If we think of "sim story" as a grammatical phrase, then "story" is the noun and "sim" is just an adjective. Lay your foundations first, and then--if you have the time and energy to do so--embellish away :)

2) Don't be afraid to write shit. Write lots of shit, and don't be afraid to share it. Good luck finding a writer who doesn't think their own work is shit, but the truth is that other people won't think it's shit at all.

And really? The more "shit" you write, the more gold you'll write too, and you'll be able to tell the difference more easily. And if you go back to your old work and find that it makes you want to throw up? That's good! It means you've improved :)

27. Storytelling aside, what first drew you to The Sims? What do you like most about playing The Sims?

Well... it's video games + world-building + storytelling? Best. Combo. Ever.

'Nuff said :P

But even when I was playing, probably the thing I liked most about it was the storytelling aspect. I mean, is it even possible to play Sims without some sort of story going on in the background?

28. How long have you been playing The Sims? Have you been playing since Sims 1?

Well, I never actually owned a Sims game until Sims 2 (and even then it was a few years after the initial release), but I'd played before at friends' houses. I was just a kid when Sims 1 was around, and I didn't have my own computer at the time, and my mother didn't like the idea of the game--the whole "playing God" idea and whatnot--and I couldn't have afforded it on my own.

I used to bug my friends to play Sims all the time before I had my own copy. In hindsight, some of them were probably annoyed with me :P

29. Do you only play the game with stories in mind, or do you also play just for fun? Do you record everything with photos anyway?

These days, I only use the game for pictures. I don't even play my story Sims--they exist solely for the purpose of story visuals.

I sometimes miss playing the game, though. I have this secret other RKC neighborhood that I was playing for a while, but I haven't had time for it lately. Hopefully I'll get around to it again soon, though (although there are stories there too, if only for me).

30. Do you have a self sim? (We'd love to see him/her, if you want to share a pic.)


She doesn't really look much like me, but she's the closest I could get (I got her from breeding Aldhein and Nora in CAS, just for something a little more interesting than a straight-up Face Whatever). As a snide reference to my own cruelty to my sims, she played the antagonist in this Sim Haven prompt, opposite Arrigo of This House Is Vegas as a nameless plane crash survivor/psych ward patient.

31. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Wow, my interview seems really rushed and impersonal compared to the previous ones. Sorry about that :S

And I'd like to thank all those who have read or still are reading any of my stories, for sticking with me and supporting my work in spite of its rather inconsistent quality. And an extra thanks to everyone who tacked some extra questions onto this interview :)

And now, for your questions:

You have such a large cast of characters but you make them uniquely memorable. Although there are family resemblances, every character is strikingly and unforgettable. Do you spend a lot of time thinking about each person?

Thanks! I think about some characters more than others, and not necessarily the ones I write the most. Some of them are almost instinctual by this point, like the way I imagine characters like Cooper and Beth are for you and Gayl, but some of them do require more thought--and some of them I just like to think about :P

I'm not really sure if that answered your question. Sorry :(

How do you do it?

Uh... I just have a lot of time on my hands? :P

I don't know. I honestly don't know. Sometimes I worry about characters being too alike, especially with their ever-increasing number, so I'm just glad that everyone can tell them apart at this point.

Do you find that you think in terms of Naroni or Ashelia... any of them, really... very often, and apply them to RL?

Hmm... I'll admit that I'm not entirely sure what you mean? Sometimes I'll see people interacting in real life and think something like "Hmm, they remind me of Falidor and Florian", or maybe I'll get into a disagreement with someone that's similar to something I've written and I'll look back on how the conflict was solved in the story (not that that EVER works, of course :P).

That's probably not at all what you were asking. Sorry about that. My brain is just not here today.

And you've said before that Naroni started off from something you'd written when you were twelve or thirteen. Have you been developing the stories and plots that long as well, or did you simply borrow them and change them?

Well, since I decided to do a story with the RKC format, I needed a kingdom name and a handful of founding couples. I debated just whipping up some brand new characters, but then I stumbled across this old thing I'd written and thought "Hey, why don't I just make some Sims based on some of these characters?". Some I made the neighborhood--named Naroni after a place in the story--and made my founding couples, all of whom were modeled after those old characters in looks and CAS personality.

Of course, a lot of them completely changed on me once I got them onto their lots ;)

As for the plots, though, none of them have anything to do with the original story at this point, and I'm kind of hoping it stays that way. It wasn't a great story, to say the least :P

When you write, do you know where it's going to go? Do you have outlines or do you just 'go with the flow'?

In general, I have an idea of how each storyline will go. I have a very "connect the dots" writing style--I know the beginning, the ending, and the key points in the middle, and it's just a matter of how to bridge them.

I do have outlines, but they're very vague and don't stretch too far into the future. Their main functions are to remind me which Sims I need for each shoot and to ensure that the present storylines each get an appropriate amount of focus--not that they always work :P

What draws you to a particular time period? I know that your locations fictionalized and that you consider your work not to be historical fiction but many of your stories lean towards the "period piece" genre. What is your favorite thing about writing stories set in the past (or, in the case of Orbis Umbra, a time period that never happened)?

Hmm... I guess it could be the whole idea of "write what you know" and my sheer hatred of said idea? :P

I understand the logic behind it and I do draw on my own experience for certain in-story events, but in general, I have a lot more fun writing what I don't know. Does this sometimes end up with me having no idea what I'm talking about? Invariably. But at least I'm enjoying myself? ;)

As for the whole "why Medieval-esque as opposed to, say, Colonial-esque" aspect... it probably just has to do with my literary background--namely, all the high fantasy I grew up on :P That and the fact that it was sort of implied by the whole RKC thing.

Again, sorry if that didn't quite answer your question. I recently discovered that I think more in numbers than in anything else, and sometimes it's difficult to put my non-prose thoughts to words.

Most of your stories seem pretty thoroughly structured-- A great deal of thought seems to go into your outlines for your stories from beginning to end. But how far in advance do you plan a story like Naroni that is more open-ended? And does the flexibility of an open-ended story pose its own challenges or does it feel more liberating?

I plan Naroni about a story year or so in advance (and now that you've reminded me of that, I should probably bust my ass on my 1174 outline pretty soon). I don't like to plan too far ahead in case I get some new stroke of inspiration for either an existing storyline or a brand new one, but it's nice to have some idea about the near future of the story. Outlining has its advantages and disadvantages, for sure, but I think I've managed a decent balance so far.

When do you take the time to come up with all of this stuff?? Your imagination must not have an off switch! Is there a specific point in your day where you sit down to hash everything out or does inspiration just strike you wherever you are, whatever you are doing?

Heh... well, a lot of it is probably just my personality. I'm kind of a grumpypants and I don't really have much patience for my daily routine. On the other hand, I'm kind of a homebody and not at all a people person, so I don't really get many opportunities to switch things up. Therefore, I'm pretty much thinking about something I'm writing--an online work or an offline one--at any given time. I imagine it's simultaneously amusing and frustrating to the people around me, seeing as I'm always zoning out in lines, grabbing foods I don't don't like off of grocery shelves and rushing to put them back, and walking in front of buses.

So... I wouldn't say that my imagination doesn't have an off switch, exactly. Story stuff is just my mental screen saver XD

Additionally, is Florian based on a real person? And if so, will he marry me?

Florian is... well, he's Florian. He's nothing like I expected him to be when I first made him--he just sort of evolved on his own. He's not really based on anyone, but there might be someone sort of like him out there?

Since you mentioned it, how many illegitimate children does Lonriad have? ;)

Note to self--pick better example question :P

Well, in terms of the game, he only has the four on his family tree (Imena, Orrick, Senwick, and of course Severin). In terms of canon... oh, God. Way more than that. The guy's spent the better part of the last sixty years banging any willing females he can get his hands on, so I don't even want to guess at the number. I'm not sure I can count that high o_O

About how long does it take you to write a post? How many drafts do they go through?

Like I said above, about forty-five minutes to an hour if you don't count time-wasting distractions (of which there are sometimes quite a few). With my Sims stuff, I only do one draft. I should probably do at least two, but I don't have the patience :P

Are we EVER going to see the Many Potential Brides of Severin?

Uh... maybe? The problem is that he never actually married any of them and therefore none of them are in Naroni anymore. Most of them are in Dovia now, though. One is married to Abrich, one is married to Cambrin, one is married to Danthia's father, and the other three are married to the Sadiel brothers who are still in Dovia. Of the other two, one is ridiculously old and probably doesn't have much longer to live, and the other is the infamous Pope's Niece.

I won't rule out the possibility of seeing any of them at some point, but I'm not planning on it just yet.

Does Albany know that Hal is back in town (and married to a Monty)? If so, how does he feel about it and why hasn't he been making Hal's life more miserable?

Albany has no idea that Hal is back in Veronaville. Yet. :S

How do you keep up with so many stories and do it on such a structured time table?

I guess this combines the answers I gave Beth and Pen. Too much time on hands + not many other interests = one-trick pony who's constantly writing, whether it be sim stories or manuscripts :P

What drew you to this time period? I know you hopped into current time with THIV (which I <3). Do you see yourself doing another story like that?

Like I said to Pen, it's mainly the reading material in my past plus the RKC format plus the desire to speculate about the unknown (plus maybe my obsessive world-building tendencies and my inability to put those to use in a time/place with which the readers are already familiar?).

I actually have some Sims whipped up for another modern story that I might start at some point. I'd planned on using them in another SimFic50 after wrapping up THIV, but then Orbis Umbra exploded out of nowhere and that ended up taking THIV's old slot. I might do the other SimFic after IFV winds up, though? ;) Of course, looking at my notes for it, it wouldn't end up being anything like THIV.

OMG!! FLORIAN!! He is the best! Where did his character come from?

Flooooorian again! I really need to think of more for that man to do these days :S

(Granted, his last appearance was him dragging his boss out of bed in the middle of the night for the sole purpose of ranting about romantic relationships between stepsiblings, which is definitely something that Florian and only Florian would do.)

Thanks again for reading, everyone. This was fun (minus all the LJ ridiculousness), and I hope you all have a great week :)


Christi said...

Yayyy! Good interview Van! :) And yes, you did answer my question... that's exactly how I meant it X) I love your answer to Pen, too, about writing from what you know (and how you disagree with that notion entirely). I admire that, and I think you do an amazing job at it.

FYI; it's like, almost 2am, and so my eyes are playing tricksy on me, and my word verification below is "neloni" and I totally thought it was Naroni, and I was all STFU..!! haha. Okay. Going to bed then :X

Dinuriel said...

Awww, thanks Christi! I'm relieved to hear that I answered the question after all :)

Ah yes, the old "write what you know"... Glad you think I'm doing something right, though :)

Eeheehee... that would have been the most fitting word verification ever XD

Ann said...

That was fun to read! I really like your answers. Especially the one to the "writing what you know". Thanks for that! It's encouraging to see that you don't agree with that "rule".

You should do interviews more often. ;)

Dinuriel said...

Thanks Ann :)

I don't really like rules in general when it comes to writing (or anything, but writing in particular). The only rule I'm willing to vouch for is the little-known "Write what you want to write" :P

S.B. said...

oh my god LJ finally came up so I can read this!

I am constantly amazed that you produce such incredible quality with the base game. Not the writing of course since your writing is so good you don't really need the illustrations.

Instinctual is an interesting way to describe some of your characters and their relationships. You definitely do more than that!

Your work is addictive. I just love it!

Mela said...

6. Do you have one sim that frustrates you more than any of the others?

They all frustrate me. All of them.

LOL. Good answer! Only because I know how annoying it could be to work with story sims. They can be such little prima donnas. ;)

26. I completely agree about your advice for someone wanting to create a sims story. Especially about stressing about posing, lighting, etc. I've read stories on the exchange with no camera mods, simple angles, no CC, blurry textures that were as entertaining as stories that were filled up to the nines in every obscure yet gorgeous piece of CC out there. ;) Stories do have to be entertaining first and foremost, I agree!

Thanks for doing the interview! I really wouldn't worry about it seeming rushed and impersonal. I think it was definitely a nice intro into your mind and your world. :D I've said this before, but just want to say publically that I love your writing, especially the way you write your characters. I'm looking forward to reading more of it!

Dinuriel said...

Beth: LJ was not being good to me last night. Not at all :S

Awww, thanks. I'm glad you enjoy my work, because I definitely enjoy yours :)

Mela: Heheheh, that they can be, those silly little pixel people :S

Oh, for sure. I've never actually been to the exchange (!), but I'm not surprised to hear that. Good writing and meticulous visuals don't necessarily go hand in hand, although it's always stunning when they do.

No problem, it was fun :) And thank you! I'm glad you're enjoying my stuff, and that is definitely a compliment coming from a great storyteller like you :)

Penelope said...

Goodness. Blogger is being abnormally pissy towards me today.

But anyhoo-- Yay!! Great interview, Van! And OMG more Sparron/Searle Ietrin/Jeda to come. I am excited. And your answers were great! Not impersonal at all. You hit the nail on the head with everything that is most essentially wrong with the game in #19. Only I know that if the creators of the game were to try to improve upon things like height differences, they would totally screw it up. Sims would come out with weird bodily proportions and junk because that is the magic of Maxis.

I LOLed at the fact that all of your sims frustrate you. I was just about to type that I feel your pain but then I remembered how much more difficult posing must be for you with only the base game installed. :O

Thank you for the responses to my questions!! After I wrote them, I read Beth and Christi's questions and realized that they were essentially the same questions. My first thought was, "D'oh!" and my second thought was, "That's okay. Van will vary detail of the responses!" And you did because you rock.

And OMG THANK YOU, VAN! I was so flattered that you mentioned my story as an inspiration.

Also, wonderful advice to anyone wanting to start their own sim story.

Dinuriel said...

Thanks Pen :)

I'm ridiculously incoherent right now--kind of in one of those "Hallelujah" moments after a frustrating morning has finally started to go right--but I'm glad you enjoyed the interview. And you're probably right about the Sim heights ;)

I'm glad you thought the responses vary, and your story definitely deserved the mention :)

Thanks Pen :D

Joseph said...

Hey Van. Great interview. Wierdly I still can't think of any questions I'd like to ask you. Probably too late now anyway but there you go.

Sorry for spamming the comments but on a random note, can you get into Lothere? Cos I can't.


Joseph said...

Just reread ur interview cos i can't sleep. Don't know how i missed it 1st time round but what you said about writers thinking their work is shit. Too true. I still wonder why people like my work so much. Not complaining though. Sorta helps when you have people reading ur work.

Dinuriel said...

Thanks Joseph :)

I can get into Lothere just fine, but it looks like I am veeeeery late responding to your comment. Sorry :S

katee412 said...

So... I wouldn't say that my imagination doesn't have an off switch, exactly. Story stuff is just my mental screen saver XD

Utterly brilliant :D I don't feel so weird now that I think about what is to happen next in my story when I'm trying to go to sleep!

I really enjoyed reading your answers, and also I probably laughed a little too much at your picture of Canada.

Dinuriel said...

Thanks Kate! Glad you enjoyed :)

*eagerly awaits next Repercussions chapter*