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Hamumu Journal
Bits And Bobs02:17 AM -- Wed April 20, 2011

Item The Onemost: I've revived an ancient productivity method of mine! As you know if you read this space often, I am always switching to new methods because each one fails after a week or two when I have a day I spend not able to do it, and the streak is broken. This one is a classic: Action Tiles! I have a set of Scrabble-like tiles (but big and plastic) for game prototyping, and I assigned meaning to various letters (e.g. "M" is work on MHD, "B" is learn Blender), stick them all in a bag (with multiples of ones I should spend more time doing), then draw a set of 8 of them. Those are my 8 hours of work for the day. Or less, should I happen to draw "P" which is to play games for research (no WoW allowed though!), or "S" for Stand Up At The Computer - that saves me an hour of worktime, but wears me down physically instead. Humans were not meant to sit, get up and move around, people. It's a fun system. I drew a "J" today, so here I am.

Item Most Secondward: I don't believe I've stated this here, and if I have, here it is again: I have a lifelong goal of becoming a published author of fiction. I'm a published game developer, but that doesn't quite do it. And self-publishing doesn't either. Neither does non-fiction. I want the Powers That Be to say "That fiction is far enough from complete tripe that we'll place it up on these shelves, right next to complete tripe like James Patterson!" Maybe it's a need for acceptance, maybe it's a desperate cry for fame, maybe it's the desire to connect with humanity, maybe it's some visceral ancient human desire to contribute to the canon of literature (like cavemen did). I'm not aiming for a bestseller here, just a published book. Well, I'll start hopefully with a published story in some other book or magazine, but I suspect that won't be sufficient to count. I can't say exactly what it is, I can only say that it's really the only actual Life Dream I've ever had, so I gotta do it. That's why there are "T" tiles in my bag. T is for Typing, because M and W are the same tile in this particular tileset. I'm practicing, starting many stories, seeing what sticks in my craw. My writing craw. I have many many starts, not so many finishes. But I'm probably getting better at it as I go. My wife is an amazing writer and maybe I can put the pressure on her to finish her own Great American Novel by getting something of my own done. And she brings up my game when we write "competitively", using the ever-popular Writing Prompts 3.

3: The Action Tiles are working well so far (everything does in its first couple weeks! It's like dieting in that respect). M.H.D. is getting polished up nicely! The editor is really easy to use and nice, and as of today, you can finally test your creations from it. I'm not sure it's the kind of game greatly suited to an editor - no big adventures to be had. But this is definitely the groundwork for some future good stuff. And I am investigating Playtomic for both high scores and level sharing. That way it'll be huge - the millions of players worldwide will all be sharing stuff together. Which is a recipe for extremely inappropriate levels, but hey, there'll be a lot of them at least!

Item The Conclusive: Riddle me these things in the comments section: Is Portal 2 great and as good or better than Portal? The hype has killed my interest but now people sound like they're having fun with it. I won't be buying for many months anyway, but I like to know. Also, what are your Life Dreams? You gotta have something or it's all just gummi bears and netflix! Wait, that might be my second Life Dream. And finally, since I'm trying to blog close to daily, what question do you have for me? I'd be happy to answer or dodge it as appropriate, in a future Hamumu Journal.
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