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Why are we named Dancing Lights Press?

Today’s prompt is “light”, so I’ll finally explain why the name of the company is Dancing Lights Press.

As some readers know, I started off as an RPG blogger under the handle UncleBear. From 1996 to 2009, I ran a fairly popular blog. Many people who went on to do great things said nice things about it. I have been cited as an inspiration a few times. There was, briefly, a publishing company called UncleBear Media. Behind the scenes there were business shenanigans. Long story short, I don’t own the name or any of the intellectual property that was generated. The old domain was sold to a stock trading company.

The Asparagus Jumpsuit Years

I did venture back into publishing, sans partners. The name of that company was Asparagus Jumpsuit. I chose it specifically to be weird, offbeat, and have no specific meaning. Some people found the name off-putting for some reason. One person told me that he would never, ever buy anything because he hated the stupid name of the company. It had nothing to do with the quality of the work. It has nothing to do with what was being published. There are boundaries around creativity, I guess.

In truth, Asparagus Jumpsuit has been created to serve as a learning lab while I was in business school. It allowed me to experiment with product ideas, marketing methods, and so on. I wrote papers about the results that I got. In that regard, it was a smashing success. I graduated Summa Cum Laude  with a degree in Business Administration, Entrepreneurship emphasis.

The Rise of Dancing Lights Press

The original idea was that after graduation Asparagus Jumpsuit would scale up. By that point, though, I’d learned so much and had so many new concept that I wanted to incorporate. It was easier to start fresh with a new company than try to revamp the existing one. That meant finding a new name. Hopefully one that would resonate better with my potential customer base.

I wanted products to focus on creativity and ideas. The notion of the light bulb over a person’s head kept coming up in my brainstorming session. At that point I was already in Finland, land of the aurora borealis, the Northern Lights. Another light reference. Thematically, everything was pointing toward light. After checking the availability of several names, and bouncing potential candidates off of people I trust, I settled on Dancing Lights Press.

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#RPGaDay2020 – Light

RPGaDay is an annual event held each August. It asks tabletop gamers to use provided daily prompts to express something fun, interesting, and positive about the hobby. David F. Chapman (Autocratik), the award-winning game designer, created it.

About Dancing Lights Press

Dancing Lights Press is a lo-fi publisher of tabletop roleplaying systems and system-agnostic creative aids, including the best selling Building series, the DoubleZero action thriller system, and Hippogryph, a fantasy story game system with traditional  roots. Our products embrace a minimalist aesthetic in design and presentation because roleplaying is an activity, not a collection of expensive rulebooks.

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