The Newsletter is Getting an Upgrade!

The Newsletter is Getting an Upgrade! Starting in January 2022, the newsletter will be monthly! I will release new issues on the first Thursday of each month, along with a podcast version! Along with the newsletter, there will eventually be an archive of system reference documents and errata! And it will all remain FREE! 

The catch? Dancing Lights Press is leaving MailChimp. I know, I know, I just spent weeks begging you to sign up, and now I am asking you to go sign up again somewhere else. Here’s the thing: the newsletter is moving to Patreon! 

https://www.patreon.com/lightspress

Wait, you’re asking, doesn’t that cost money? Only if you want it to! You can follow Patreon creators for free and get their free content! The newsletter, audio newsletter, SRDs, and errata will be free to everyone! 

On the paid tiers, you can access a community discussion forum and a monthly Q&A. Why am I effectively putting those behind a paywall? Over the past two years, several people have emailed me asking me to mentor them about writing, game design, and publishing. I have a hard time saying no to polite people coming to me in earnest. The thing is, that takes up my time. As much as I enjoy doing it, I just can’t anymore. By doing a monthly Q&A I can still answer those questions in a more structured fashion. 

The same goes for the community. In my time, I have seen tabletop RPG forums rise and fall. The ones that have survived require a lot of moderation. That takes time that I don’t have. I don’t want to use unpaid volunteers, because I know how much work is required. Mods should be paid, and at the moment I can’t afford that. A paywall keeps out all but the dedicated trolls and reduces the need for heavy moderation. 

The MailChimp version of this newsletter will continue until January. The first official Patreon issue will also be the last MailChimp issue. There will be a few issues between now and the end of the year, tying up some loose ends and setting expectations for 2022. Stay tuned!

Release Updates

In the next issue, I’ll give you the full rundown of monthly releases for 2022. There will be at least one 96-page book guaranteed. This does not include the backlog of Director’s Cut titles, which I’ll cover further down. There will also be unannounced releases throughout the year. 

Also starting in January, new releases will be available in digital formats at DriveThruRPG, Amazon, Gumroad, and DancingLightsPress.com. Major releases will also have tie-in merch. Settings will have journaling games to accompany them, which will be free to paid patrons. 

A lot of planning has gone into this. New releases are going to be monthly events

Print-on-Demand Updates

Every issue of the new-and-improved newsletter will have updates on print-on-demand availability. These updates will let you know what is at the printer and what is now available to order. I’m going to continue working with DriveThruRPG and will also have books available through Amazon. There may be another vendor, but that deal won’t happen until summer at the earliest. Here’s hoping that global supply chain issues and pandemic complications get straightened out in the coming year. I very much want to make print-on-demand hardcovers available at the same time digital releases are dropped. At the moment I can’t do that, because it absolutely murders my budget to delay releases until the printers work through their backlog and the post office gets around to delivering proofs. 

Backlog Updates

Okay, let’s talk Director’s Cut editions. I want current core titles to be the best they can be before offering print editions. The terminology and philosophy of game design need to be consistent across products within each line and across all lines. That is far more work than I expected it to be, but it’s going to be worth it. I’m building a foundation that will support the growth of this company.

To that end, the Director’s Cut editions will come out as they’re ready. This means I’m not going to give you any sort of ETA, and I’m not going to announce them more than a few days in advance if at all. I didn’t want to do cold drops, but honestly, between the above print-on-demand issues, grasping how large a project I had bitten off, and the relocation from Finland to the United States, this has been a grueling year. No excuses, just facts. 

Every issue of the new newsletter will let you know which Director’s Cut books are now available. I’ll also let you know what I’m currently working on. I can’t let you know when they’ll drop, but at least you’ll know what’s coming. 

As of this writing, I’m finishing up the edits of Building CharactersBuilding WorldsBuilding Adventures, and the DoubleZero core book. 

System Reference Document Updates

There will be new System Reference Documents for both the DoubleZero system and the Hippogryph system. In an ideal world, they would drop at the same time as the Director’s Cuts of the core books. Then again, in an ideal world, I’d have a staff to do some of this work, or I’d have a half-dozen clones of myself to pick up the slack. Know that they’ll be available as soon as possible and will happen by the end of 2022. They will be available for free on both the Dancing Lights Press site and the Patreon site. The newsletter will inform you of any changes or updates made. 

Errata Updates

Unfortunately, I did not think to track changes between the current books and the upcoming Director’s Cut editions. Starting with new releases, I have a process in place for capturing errata. This will be kept in documents for each book. The newsletter will publish the errata, along with a link to the updated documents. Like the SRDs, the errata files will be available for free on the Dancing Lights Press site and Patreon.

Anything Else?

That’s a lot. I’m planning another issue for next week to tell you about the 2022 release schedule. If I think of anything I’ve forgotten here, I’ll talk about it there. The goal is to spend 2022 transforming Dancing Lights Press into the lo-fi publishing company that I want it to be, and the tabletop roleplaying publisher that you deserve.

I hope you’re doing well today.

Berin Kinsman

Man in the Arena

Dancing Lights Press