Tag Archive for Super Secret Project

The Longest Winter

Winter has been both fun and challenging. Waded through some major changes and made sure to keep on the horse. Some exciting things have been going on and are continuing to develop into even more exciting things.

December was paper writing crunch time for grad school. Early February I was up in L.A. for script work and I ended up being pulled into a fashion show! I have not done professional modeling in a long, long time, but I managed not to trip on the runway despite the buckets of fake blood that got spilled all over the catwalk from the designer before us. Eek! I walked for the Aneroc label, which belongs to my friend and talented costume designer Corena Gibson. It was a lot of fun, and for me, very nostalgic.

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I also got to drop in on an interview with Camden Toy. Camden is a cool guy and I’m glad that he’s working with us on ADAM 8. I did get some actual work done though, and picked up two new scripts that I’ve been working on since, as well as pitched around some ideas with the writer/producer I’m working with. Fun times in Hollywood. You never know what’s going to happen.

In late February and early March I turned my attention towards the East Coast convention circuit. First up was DREAMATION, hosted by Double Exposure. Wonky website aside, it was an amazing gathering of cutting edge indie game designers and awesome players. It’s the most progressive and positive gaming convention I’ve ever attended. While there, I participated in a Gaming as Other panel, part of a series of panels that tackles the sticky topic of minority issues in the gaming community and within games themselves. As a bi-racial Mexican-American woman who has been a part of the gaming community for a long time, this is a pretty important topic to me, and one that I have a lot to say about. You can watch the video below.

I also got to play some really fun games, and have a strategy meeting for the Super Secret Project while there. The one negative? It was really cold!

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After that was Intercon N, which while not quite so progressive as DREAMATION, was still enjoyable. I sat on three panels at Intercon, including an additional one in the Gaming as Other series, which I don’t think was quite as well received as it had been at previous cons where it was presented. My favorite panel was the one I sat on with other academics, discussing the psychology of playing characters. I could have gone on for hours, hours!

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Overall, I’m sure I’ll be returning to the East Coast. There are a lot of interesting things going on there, and I definitely need more time to explore.

I also submitted to the call for papers for this year’s annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion, the biggest conference in the world in my field. I have been biting my nails ever since! I’ll find out in April if my proposal is accepted, but I really think I might have a chance. How many other people can there be that are experts on the intersectionality of religion with ARGs and LARPs? It’s an extremely competitive conference though, so while I can’t lie and say I won’t be let down if I don’t get accepted this year, there will be many other chances in the future.

And just so the cycle completes itself it’s now time for another graduate school paper crunch. Woo.

End of Year Roundup, Some Annoucements!

The last two months of have been a whirlwind.

Things got kicked off with Comikaze in Los Angeles. I was there as talent for Tinker. It was a lot of fun and I met a lot of great people in the industry including Chuck Patton, who is my absolute hero for being an animator for both Spawn and Captain Planet. That show warped my mind with its environmentalist agenda, and is essentially how I wound up in the Peace Corps! We got to hang out and talk for a while, and it was really great.

Clearly enthralled with Chuck.

Clearly enthralled with Chuck.

There were lots of great photo ops, and I even manage to snag a pic with the actual Power Rangers! Weirdly, I also had a conversation about Jungian psychology in popular media with some guy from Universal. You just never know at these things.

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Then there was the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion in Baltimore. This was a heavy hitting academic conference, and a complete 180 from Comikaze. I was non-presenting this year, just so I get get my legs under me and see what it is like, but next year I will definitely be submitting an abstract. There were many, many wonderful panels and there was just not enough time to attend them all. Several of my favorites talked about ethnographic studies of possession and mediumship, experiences in field work, and state exams in feudal China. Really, really fascinating stuff. Baltimore was way colder than I would have liked, but it turns out their beer isn’t so bad. Several professors and fellow students from my program were also in attendance, and it was pretty fun to roll as a group. Pacifica was very well represented, and I was proud.

Finally came LosCon 40, a science fiction convention also in L.A. I presented there last year and it was a pretty good experience, so I was looking forward to running some more panels. We ran “How to Date a God” and “Surviving Nightmares” and they both went over really well. There’s actually a lot of mythology involved in the landscape of dreams and nightmares, and it was so fun getting to share that with others. It was, however, our first run of Nightmares and I was a little nervous. It’s a dicey and often times very personal subject, but it was really great to see the audience connect with the material and wordlessly create a safe space for the subject to be talked about by all of us.

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So that finishes up 2013 for me. However, I’ll have nary a pause. There are a few exciting things coming up.

In January I’ll be NPCing for the Steampunk Murder Mystery at the Steampunk Symposium, which is always tons of fun. The Symposium is staged on the Queen Mary, and it doesn’t get more cool or spooky than that. I will also be COMING OUT OF GM RETIREMENT to help the venerable and talented Mike Young run a LARP at the Symposium. I retired from GMing in 2010 after years of running a Legend of the Five Rings network. It had been very rewarding, but also tiring as hell, so I decided that I would take a very long, maybe permanent break from GMing. However, it looks like this one time (and this one time only!) I’m going to be chipping in and helping Mike run the show. You really, really don’t want to miss it.

In early spring I will be attending the Dreamation and Intercon N circuit. This is my first trip out to the East Coast gaming scene, and I’m curious to see how things are done there. There’s a lot of indie folks out that way, and they always seem to be up to something interesting. I may or may not be sitting in on a variety of panels. I think we’re talking about maybe two right now, but I’ll let you guys know as that develops.

Other things that are going on: I’ve joined onto another project with director/producer Sean Williams. I’m not comfortable giving away any details yet, but it’s a really interesting script and I can’t wait to get working on it. It’s nothing at all like ADAM 8, which is the sci-fi feature currently in pre-production. I’ve also joined an indie game project headed up by game designer Brennan Taylor. It’s also a secret for right now, sorry! But I can tell you that it does have something to do with my roots in Legend of the Five Rings. I am super, super stoked about this project, and I think we’re going to have a beautiful end product. I can’t wait to talk about it!

Otherwise I’m still doing the Ph.D. thing full time. Somehow. Have some abstract deadlines coming up for a few conferences and publications. Have joined a couple of independent study groups on top of that. I’ve also decided that I’d like additional language acquisition on top of the Spanish and the little of Kichwa that I know. I was thinking German but now I’m no so sure. Suggestions?

See you kids around,
Strix

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