View Full Version : Journal Editorial Policy: Open or Selective?

28 April 2002, 07:40 PM
Now that it looks like there will continue to be an Online Journal, and that I will probably be continuing as Editor, there's a question that I feel I need to ask of the readership.

Nealos' original vision of the Journal, as articulated to me, included being a way for everyone without webspace of their own to get their SW creations (stats, fiction, etc) published. Send it to us and whatever it is, we'll format it and post it, no questions asked and no judgment passed. Everyone gets a chance to have their stuff seen.

I tend to see the Journal less as a public webspace and more as a fan-made successor to the old, official WEG Adventure Journal. This means keeping the production values high, the fiction well-written, the stats non-munchkin, etc. (These are matters of opinion, but since I have an English degree and am a long-time gamer and SW fan, I know better than you. ;) :D ) This means, however, that some submissions will not make the cut.

Which direction would you like to see the Journal go in? This is a straw poll, totally non-binding, but I'd like to know what Journal readers and contributors think.

Chris Curtis
28 April 2002, 08:11 PM
This is a really good question, and I had to think for a while before answering. I put down "only the good stuff", but I want to state some qualifiers for that as well.

1. With the major exception being that submissions have to be in foth systems, pretty much anything can be submitted to 'Network and get posted. If this question had been asked 6 months ago, I'd probably have voted "post everything" simply because at that time there wasn't any simple way (though there were methods) for community members without their own website to get material posted somewhere.

Now that Submissions is up and running, though, any "sub-par" (I really hate to use that term) submissions could be funneled their way.

2. However, I think Ben had a decent idea in one of his posts in the other thread. Perhaps someone does submit something to the Online Journal that is "sub-par". Instead of simply sending it over to Submissions, perhaps the "Online Journal Team" could go to work on the submission. Someone edits the description/capsule, another tweaks the stats (and maybe converts it if it's only on one system), an artist creates some art to go along with it, and finally someone checks over the finished product to make sure everything's good.

Of course, in order to be able to do that, people submitting material would have to understand (and agree) that the Team would be looking over the submission and editing it as needed. They would, of course, keep it as true to the original intention as possible, but hopefully the end product would be better for everyone involved.

This system could work very well if the Journal were to use some sort of CMS as Nealos has mentioned.

So I guess maybe my original choice should have been "Both". Accept everything, but help make all of it fit into the "good stuff" category. That way everyone wins.

(Wow, I'm a posting maniac today! :D )

28 April 2002, 08:31 PM
Having the SWRPGNetwork Submissions department around certainly does make my job easier. Without it, I probably would have gotten even MORE mail this past year. :rolleyes:

I also try, when I have rejected something, not to just toss it back at the author with a "this suXX0r", but to offer specific complaints and suggestions for improvement. But I'm the first to admit that I have high standards, perhaps unreasonably so. If it's any consolation, I apply them to myself as well.

28 April 2002, 10:32 PM
Gosh, I haven't voted yet... I don't know which way to go.

One one hand, I want everyone to be able to post. I cringe at picturing anyone feeling left out or too intimidated to submit something for a variety of reasons, such as seeing the same names published all the time or not having confidence in themselves. I'm trying to remain sensitive to the fact that there are a ton of kids involved here, not just young and older adults.

On the other hand, I want quality. I want to check out sweet stuff in every issue.

I'll have to sleep on this a few nights or so.

In the meantime, let me repost here an idea for how to run the journal in the future (this was previously posted in my last thread, under "Comments.")

"a. two or more people whose sole job is to encourage and collect submissions all the time from the community.
b. collected submissions get sent to one of two editors (split up the work). these editors work together to edit all submissions then throw them into a pile called "ready to post."
c. a post editor can select submissions from the "ready to post" pile to build the next issue. They can peruse the pile to prepare well balanced issues.
d. The selected material and description of the order they should appear in can be sent to a final person, the one who enters all the text into the journal page template (either manually or via a content management system). the issue goes live, and voila. "

Just thought I'd throw it out here. Finally, Moridin sent me over email a list of good ideas. Moridin, post those here if you would - I think everyone should take a look at them.

Thanks all,

28 April 2002, 10:47 PM
Yep, sure thing. This is how I'd run the Journal if it was up to me, straight out of my brain. Peruse if you will:

1) Keep Kelly on as your main editor but get a small staff, if need be. I'm willing to pitch in, AFTER June 21st. I think you need an Editor In Chief (Kelly), a Conversion Editor (more on this later), a Publicist, an Art Director, and a Layout/Design Editor (more on this later, too).
2) Have a set of regular columns and regular columnists. Require that the columnists produce one article for each issue, and give deadlines. For example, I'd really like to write an article like Special Ops: Archetypes from Star Wars Gamer each month, and after mid-June I could commit to doing so. Ensure that you have 1 of every section each month, so that regardless of submissions you're always pumping out fresh content.
3) I know a guy who is trying to organize a group to produce Galaxy-Wide NewsNets to send to our Submissions site; I could talk to him and his group about making it happen monthly, so that you constantly have that section up to date. It doesn't really fit the Submissions site too well, anyways, so this would be a great outlet for him/them.
4) Set up monthly themes, and plan issues 3 to 4 months in advance. For example, say you want to capitalize on the release of the Power of the Jedi sourcebook in August, so you decide to have a special Jedi issue. You contact your columnists and tell them that is the theme and collect topics from them in, say, May. Give them a deadline, and make them stick to it.
5) Publish it in PDF format and make it look professional. I know lots of people are OK with just plain text, but damn if looking professional hasn't helped out my site. This is the job of the Layout/Design editor. The Art Director sends the art, the Editor in Chief sends the articles, and he formats 'em and professionalizes 'em.
6) Put in artwork orders with your artists at least a month in advance. Have a set art staff.
7) Get professional writers to contribute. It may not be as difficult as it soundsat least 2 professional authors have contacted me about sending me some articles our way since Gamer became defunct. I'd love to share these with the Journal, and having one in there each month could be a great boost for the Journal's popularity. Additionally, I am pretty sure I could talk at least one short story author into contributing some short stories, and I bet some of the old WEG employees might even be able to toss an article or two our way.
8) Encourage freelancers in addition to the regular staff. Contact people months in advance, and be proactive about it. If you see someone doing good work, snag 'em and get their attention, pitch an article idea, or something to let them know that YOU want THEM, not that THEY'RE trying to live up to YOUR expectations. Additionally, any work of good quality that is submitted can, of course, go into the issue.
9) Get a staffer that does nothing but convert from one system to another (Conversions Editor). You may not think being dual-system is important, but it is. There's a lot of very talented people in our community, and most of them are old time D6ers. Now, while there are a few budding d20 authors, the game's too new to have the kind of veterans D6 does. But you need d20ers to read the magazine if you want it to stay popular and encourage people to submit. I'm not talking about someone that does the job of GMSarli on my site, but someone who can take a single-system submission and convert it before being published.
10) Keep the regular columns as they are now in the AJ/OJ, but add some new ones. For instance, the Special Ops section from Gamer featuring 1 Prestige Class and 1 Archetype a month has always been popular. Merge the best of the Adventure Journal and the best of Gamer for regular columns.

This is how I'd do it if it were up to me. I am just a real stickler for high-quality work, and I'm a big proponent of producing quality AND quantity, which I think this plan provides.

29 April 2002, 12:55 AM
I think Moridin is absolutely right, a conversions editor is a MUST , not only to keep submission relevent to everyone but so that the idea of submitting to the journal is not "offputting" as it were. I would love to submit stuff, and heck, could even be a regular contributor (if nothing else than at least with an interesting NPC or two a month), but if we had to be able to submit in both formats..Im screwed.

I also agree with keeping quality high. One thing we have always tried to do over at my website is approach articles and info from the angle that "what if WE were the editors working for WEG?"...it has so far proven successful, as you wont find munchkin stats or outrageous abilites on our webpage. I think this is important...if you let anyone submit and everything goes up, quite simply the quality will go down, and I think that is the wrong message to send.

Ah, thats al I have for now, heck it's ONLY 4:57 in the AM and I have to work in 2 hours.:D

29 April 2002, 02:28 AM
I was going to say 'accept all submissions, but only include the good ones in the Journal, if necessary by having staff plug the bugs'. But i guess this has already been said (i hate being late in these threads, the good ideas have always been had :D ). I, for one, wouldn't mind having my submissions reworked if that could improve the quality.

30 April 2002, 05:44 AM
Well, time to put up or shut up!

I hereby toss my hat into the ring and offer my services as a staff artist for the new online journal. In addition, unless someone else wants it...and I mean REALLY wants it, I hereby offer my services as Art Director. Of course this depends on if everyone thinks I'm qualified enough and such. What I can promise is that I do have the time to invest and of course if that ever changes I'll give plenty of notice, rather than let things slip drastically behind.

Er...thats it. Other than striving to provide quality artwork that adequately compliments the content of the journal yadda yadda....:D

30 April 2002, 01:18 PM
Comments on Moridin's comments... :D

1. Agreed.

2. Regular columns would be good, but I do not know if every month would be easily done for many people. For myself at least, the summer would be workable every month (between June and the end of September). When I go back collage in the fall I will probably be swamped some of the time.

3. Look forward to this, as it was one of the enjoyable parts of the old journal.

4. This is pretty much the only place that I do not quite agree. I personally thought that AJ 1-14 were better then Gammer for this (and a few other) reason(s), I did not really like AJ 15 primarily because the new editor tried to put a theme into it, and it ended up rather bad. That is not to say I would object to having an edition that celebrates the release of new products, so long as it is not to the exclusion of other ideas. The last thing I thought I would add is that perhaps for each WOTC book orientated edition (like the Power of the Jedi would be), there might one aimed at a WEG book (like Pirates and Privateers or Platt's Smugglers Guide).

5. Or perhaps publish it on the web, but have a link to a PDF file. While I like PDF files (and they look good), there might be a time I want to cut just part of a page out and that is a lot harder to do with PDF then with a plain web page.

6. Have people who did this full time but leave it open for freelancers, variety after all is a good thing.

7. I like this one as well - good way to draw people to the journal.

Speaking of professional writers is there any word on the second part of Patricia Jackson's Emanations of Darkness?

8. I would also add that taking a look at the Fan-Fiction part of these boards is a good idea - there has been some good stuff posted there.

9. Oh please do this, I have tried 3 times to understand D20, and there is always a hang-up. I am sure there are folks out there who are the same way with either system. Another thing to keep in mind is that this person should be good at communicating with the original author on the conversions, things converted straight sometimes lose out on the individuality that they contained (characters especially).

10. Agree totally.

30 April 2002, 10:02 PM
First, I support BRodgers offer to work in the capacity described for the Journal (and am grateful for said offer!). I think it's a neat idea.

We need to hammer out "job positions" and the expectations for each, just so we know when we've got enough people to move ahead and so that everyone involved understands what they need to do and what they can expect other Journal staff to do.

Here's a first stab, laid out in my workflow order I suggested earlier:

1. 2 Submission Collectors. They are to roam the boards and lists and encourage people to submit their material.
2. 2-3 Editors. They will cooperate to design the editing policy (to be approved by the community through a vote) then share the workload of submissions to go over them, make suggestions/corrections where needed, work with submitters to get works up to par if need be, assess art needs and work with Art Director to create/collect artwork for specific pieces, work with Conversion Specialist to generate any required conversions, and then send all submissions (including art) to the Post Editor.
3. 1 Conversions specialist who creates/edits stats where required or desired (ie. make d20 stats for a submission that only came with d6 stats).
4. 1 Art Director who works with Editors to create/collect or otherwise generate artwork to compliment submissions (not all submissions need artwork - this may not be humanly possible). Art director can recruit as many artists as desired to get the job done, and would farm out art reqeusts to artists to get them fulfilled in a timely manner.
5. 1 Post Editor. Collects the "ready to post" submissions from the Editors then combines them to create issues. This person will enter the submissions through the content management system or some other method into the Journal pages and will also be responsible for making sure the next issue's pages are good enough to post (good links, etc.)

Ok, so question one is does everyone agree with this structure and workflow? If so, it seems we already have the Art Director position filled? Also, I assume Kelly St. Clair would care to be one of the editors?


The Admiral
1 May 2002, 02:43 AM
Sounds good to me Mr The Nealos!

I'd have to disagree with making the Journal PDF. One of the main advantages to putting work out there is that people can take it away, tweak it for their own games and use it. It's much easier to do that with a web page than it is PDF. Admittedly, PDF is a lot easier to print (even though if you print a US PDF file on a British system the text finishes halfway up the page,,,) so, maybe, if it's possible to do both, do both. If we have to have one or the other, I say Web.

Vis a vis the 'all or just quality' it's my opinion that that's what an editor's job is. They take what is handed to them, and fix it. Unless something is so dire it can't be saved, in which case, it gets rejected. Maybe there should be an option in the poll saying "We publish everything, so only the good stuff."

1 May 2002, 04:54 AM
Originally posted by Nealos
If so, it seems we already have the Art Director position filled?

Sounds great Nealos!
Again, as long as no one has a problem with me in that position...heck, if someone else is interested, I dare say there should be plenty of room for two editors!

I also agree with the Admiral...the journal being web based was always a strong point...but again, it comes down to whatever is going to make it easier to get out there.

1 May 2002, 08:03 AM
You *could* do both, you know....webpage and PDF. GIve readers a choice.

Chris Curtis
1 May 2002, 09:25 AM
Certainly true, Moridin. However, I think the overall feeling by others so far (and I agree) is that if it came down to having to choose between publishing it in PDF or publishing it in (X)HTML/online, then the choice should be to go with the online version.

I think the confusion came due to the fact that it appeared (in your first post) that you were suggesting the opposite -- the primary publishing medium should be PDF with others as a secondary concern.

1 May 2002, 09:46 AM
Not at all. I just know how many requests I get for PDF versions of my larger articles, and I thought it should be at least considered an option. Additionally, you can make it look more like a magazine than just a collection of stats and articles.

1 May 2002, 10:04 AM
Let me toss my hat into the ring for the position of Editor. Since there will be several, I don't worry about getting too bogged down. I'd also like to have a say in the direction of the Journal, because I'm in love with the concept. If you'll have me, of course.

I've got a lot of ideas I'd like to at least pitch to the staff, even if no one wants to go with them.

1 May 2002, 12:24 PM
I'd go with a primary version done in HTML with a "printable" *and* PDF version of it available as well. This might seem like extra work; however, if things were simply put into XML in the first place, it wouldn't be ANY added work. I'd like to talk to Tim about this in some sort of real-time format, there's a bit of brainstorming to be done.

The Admiral
1 May 2002, 12:27 PM
Um, well, just as long as Joe Schmoe with his 486 and a four year old version of Ie can still view it, we should be good.

1 May 2002, 04:26 PM
Originally posted by Moridin
Let me toss my hat into the ring for the position of Editor. Since there will be several, I don't worry about getting too bogged down. I'd also like to have a say in the direction of the Journal, because I'm in love with the concept. If you'll have me, of course.

Thanks! I'd love to work with you, Moridin. (As long as we don't have to fight a lightsaber duel or something to determine who's in charge.)

Ghost In The Holocron
1 May 2002, 05:47 PM
Ey, all!

Great to see the jive going on around here. My feel of it seems to be the Online Journal's going to fly with a quality magazine type format -- kind of a Best of SWRPG Online deal -- planned at least a month in advance, and executed flawlessly by you all. That's just me of course, you guys may be working on something even better.

Consider yours truly a resource for the Online Journal effort -- I'd like to pitch in, if you'll have me. What I can contribute every so often is an art piece related to an issue's theme -- as a cover or perhaps in support of an article in the issue. Art Director BRodgers can point me in a certain direction and I'll zoom that way like a mad torpedo.

Keep it going, folks! I'm around if you need me.

1 May 2002, 07:26 PM

We will be able to offer the Journal primarily as webpages, with a printable format available (be it .PDF or some other manner).


Congrats, BRodgers - looks like you're it! Glad to have you.


Cool - looks like we got 2 of our 3 needed editors so far (Kelly and Moridin). Did anyone else volunteer already? Either way, we still need a third so pipe up if you want it!

As for who is "in charge," well I'd like to see the 3 text editors and the Art director get together and develop the submission policy, present it to the community to make sure there's no major complaints, then simply move on in agreement to adhere to said policy. In other words, make the policy your boss. In the event there is a disagreement that cannot be overcome in a simple and timely manner, I'd like to submit myself as a mediator - to that end, I'd be a tie breaker. I'd only serve in that capacity - otherwise, I'd offer occasional advice and suggestions when asked (or particularly inspired!).

Ok, here's the Journal Staff Roster so far:

- 0 of 2 Submission Collectors...
- 2 of 3 Editors - Kelly, Moridin...
- 0 of 1 Conversions Specialist...
- 1 of 1 Art Director - BRodgers
- 1 of ? Artists - Ghost...
- 0 of 1 Post Editor...

I'd like to suggest that since BRodgers is spearheading efforts over at the SWAG, and Ghost is also pitching in there, we might as well scratch the "Artists" positions for the Journal and have it where BRodgers is the Art Director for the Journal and takes uses the resources of the SWAG to accomplish art needed for the Journal. It winds up being little different, but drops a job title and makes things start to seem more organized and connected. :)

1 May 2002, 08:04 PM
Sounds like a plan to me Nealos!

I think this will give the artists of the community a great opportunity and will really jazz up the journal. As far as the SWAg, I think its a great idea for it and its artists to work in conjuction with the journal...I mean, thats what community is all about right?:D

Hey does this mean I can add the title "Art Director-Starwars-RPG.Net Online Journals under my wookie love slave title?


The Admiral
2 May 2002, 04:50 AM
Third editor?

I'll throw my name in the hat. After awl, my grisp of Onglish wasn't to bed.

2 May 2002, 06:13 AM
A pdf version ought to be considered. It will give the journal a much more polished look. If you are looking for examples, you could check out Action Check ,an online journal type for the Alternity game.


Alternatley you could post the journal as a zipped file of htmls. This way folks can download and review at their lesiure offline.

I've been a lurker for a while.. thought I'd actually post my 2 cents

Matt Richard
3 May 2002, 06:59 PM
Great to see things are stirring again...

I would volunteer for either being a regular columnist or being a conversions specialist, whichever one you need the most, if thats ok with you.

3 May 2002, 09:47 PM
Cool! So, here's the updated Journal Staff Roster:

- 0 of 2 Submission Collectors...
- 3 of 3 Editors - Kelly, Moridin, Admiral
- 1 of 1 Conversions Specialist - Matt Richard
- 1 of 1 Art Director - BRodgers
- 0 of 1 Post Editor...

A reminder that artists are no longer listed right now because art needs will be drawn from the SWAG members in general.

Matt, I threw you in as a conversion specialist. If you'd prefer to do something else, just let me know.

So, we still need one post editor and two submission collectors (easy jobs!). Yell out if ya want summadatakshun! :)

Matt Richard
3 May 2002, 10:20 PM
I...get to help...on the...Journal?...
(zoom to Matt's face brightning like a child who has just been told he can eat all the candy in the world)

So, (I dont mean to sound impatient), when does the journal start...doing its thing? Oh this is too cool. Being a "staff member" of the Journal. Hold on while the excitement boils down...
...(1 hour later)
...ok, im calm now. I really like editorials (read my post in the SWRPGNetwork forum) so would it also be okay if I did regular editorials (similar to those found in DLOS) and Conversions?

Thank you yet again for this oppurtunity. Its great to see the return to the glory days of starwars-rpg.net:D

Matt Richard
3 May 2002, 11:15 PM
I guess I should answer the question proposed by the poll. The three top dog editors should probably have the final say on what gets in and it should only be the good stuff.

But then I think the conversions specialist (hey thats me!) should have a say on submitted stats that are only one game. For instance, if a stat comes in that is too uncomplete for the conversions specialist to...convert, then he should have the right to reply to the submitter, telling what needs to be fixed, and what not, then everyone is happy.

Also, the Post Editors and Submissions Collectors should probably be able to advise the editors on what should get in, but ultametly, the editors have the final say.

3 May 2002, 11:58 PM
Seems to me that I could wear a second hat as Post Editor (as you say, it's an easy job, and I've done it before), unless people think that gives me an unfair veto over my fellow Editors.

Dan Kyrinov
4 May 2002, 06:09 AM
I'd like to apply for the position of Submissions Collector. I am a prolific lurker on Star Wars forums and message boards. I could surface and encourage submissions, statistics, and the like. I know there are fans brimming over with ideas for roleplaying, but a lot of them are players who play in a group and don't know the ins and outs of writing roleplaying statistics. I'd consider it part of the Submissions Collector's job to point these players towards other submitters and the willing veterans here at this site to get them started. I never got a chance to read the journal before it stalled, but I'm sure I can still be a good promoter.

In addition, I write short fiction and would be pleased as punch to have a place to submit a small Star Wars story.

Matt Richard
4 May 2002, 08:06 AM
okay, let me see if i have this "order of operation" correct:

It is the job of the submissions collectors to collect submissions (clever), and to publicize the heck out of the Journal. People email them all their submissions, the columnists email them all their stuff and then we go on to step 2.

Step 2 is after the submisions collectors have recieved the submissions. They do one or more of several things: they send any single system stats to the Conversions Specialist to be converted. The correct any mistakes on submissions. After they are done, they send it down to the cheif editors for final review. Now to step 3.

Step 3. The conversions specialist has now finished his conversions and sends it to the cheif editors for final review. The chief editors contact the Art Director to work out some art scheme or whatnot for the Journal. The art director does his thing and sends it to the cheif editors. Once the cheif editors have been able to check everything they send it on down to the Post editor.

Step 4. The post editor makes the journal and everyone's happy. the end.

I think that would be a good and efficient process for publishing the journal, but its all up to you. Plus, if this was how we did the publishing, St. Clair being the Post Editor would not give him an unfair veto, even though i dont think that could happen anyway. Just an idea.

Chris Curtis
4 May 2002, 09:19 AM
First, just to get something out of the way (and before Kelly replies :) ), Kelly St. Clair is, in fact, a male. I think we'll all agree that the mistake is understandable, but just so we all know now...

As for the "order of operations" (as you put it so well, Matt):

I think you've got it down fairly well. I'd wager that the Art Director would probably get involved earlier (in Step 2, say, of your post) to give the artists more time to be able to produce some content. Also, it looks as though the Online Journal will probably be using the content management system of Nealos's company, so aside from possibly collecting the submissions themselves, the rest of the process would happen through the CMS as opposed to being files emailed back and forth between people.

I don't have any problem with Kelly stepping in as "Post Editor" as well. As he said, he already has experience with it and did a great job in the past.

Matt Richard
4 May 2002, 10:12 AM
I wonder who made that mistake, sure wasnt me...:o Sorry about that.

5 May 2002, 11:50 PM
Matt, you can throw in editorials if you wish. As any content, it should and will pass through one of the editors just for conformity's sake.

Dan, glad to have you aboard! Sounds great :)

Kelly, thanks for offering to be post editor. There will be no additional decision-making power necessarily in terms of making editorial decisions, so that's moot. If being post editor brings too much to bear on you, then we can add another person to take that position later on.


In regards to workflow, I'd like to suggest the following:

1. Submission Collectors gather content from community members. All are emailed individually to an email address as an attachment along with the author's name, email and web address if any.

2. Editors can check this email address and take a submission from the inbox by downloading the attachment and moving the email to a save folder named after said editor. They contact the Conversions Specialist (so that he can work on the stats at the same time) and the Art Director (so that he can assign an artist to create art for the content piece) and then the editor begins editing the text. When Conversion specialist and Art Director is finished, they send the stats and art back to the editor; the editor adds said elements to the content piece and enters it into the content management system (this is very easy to do).

3. The Post Editor selects completed content pieces in the CMS to create the finished Journal by simply moving the files into a pre-live Journal directory. The assembled Journal issue is tested over the web to ensure everything is working (this should happen no less than three days before the publish date). The Post Editor would then be responsible for making the issue go live by creating a link to it through the CMS on the publish date.

This seems like the most simplified way to create a journal issue with so many people involved. I should note that producing a journal on a monthly basis would be terrific for sure, but could also prove to be too demanding for all involved. I'd like to suggest something that comes out either once every two months or simply publish an issue every time there's enough content.

As a final note, it appears we only need one or two more submission collectors before we can get started. Oh, and we need me to get the server established, convert the site to ColdFusion, enter the pages into the CMS and set the CMS up for use by the editors. I anticipate being able to get the server happening by the end of this week (cross my fingers). Then, if I can get just three or four hours uninterrupted, I can do everything else mentioned.

6 May 2002, 01:35 AM
Sounds good to me. Very professional. :)

Be advised that I am currently sitting on a small pile of submissions accumulated over the past year, so as soon as I hear that the Editors and/or the CMS are ready, I can pass them along and we'll get started.

Matt Richard
6 May 2002, 03:56 PM
Hey St.Clair, if any of those submissions need an opposite system conversion, could you send them to my email address so I can get a head start on them. Thanks. I do want to wait though to do any conversions until after i get the rulebook, so no rush.

6 May 2002, 04:02 PM
I wasn't going to say anything, but if we are calling for material I would love to have an idea of what sort of art I can get my people working on.

Heh..."my people"...

Sorry that sounded funny. Anyway StClair , whenever you have an idea as to what will need art please let me know.

Ah...have we also decided on the journal having "cover art"? Please let me know so I can get someone on it.


Chris Curtis
6 May 2002, 09:29 PM
I'd say cover art would definitely be very good. Unless Kelly can come up with a "theme" based on the submissions he has waiting in the queue, I would just go with a "random" piece of art.

Seeing as how Episode II is on the very near horizon (and surely coming out before the next issue of the [i]Journal[/i), I might suggest something that would be reminicent of Ep. II -- not necessarily something from Ep II, but maybe something in that "style". Have fun picking the artist for that, though Bob!! :D

7 May 2002, 05:40 AM
Oh yeah...thats gonna be a good time!

Im not worried...we have some pretty darn talented people out in the community willing to help.

Maybe I'll hold a contest over at Swag to get everyone involved!

Matt Richard
11 May 2002, 09:04 AM
So Im assuming we will be starting the Journal in June?

11 May 2002, 11:54 AM
That's my best guess. Which would make our hiatus just about exactly one year - some of the material I have was planned to be published last June...

Matt Richard
18 May 2002, 11:21 PM
Ok, I know im just the Conversion Specialist, but it seems to me that if we are going to do this thing in June/early July, we need several things:

1.)A theme for all of the writers to...write about.
IDEAS: Clone Wars, Jedi, RCRB
2.)A submissions guidline.
It cant be too strict, because if anyones like me, whenever I see a really strict submission guidline, I start laughing, and go back to DLOS. Make it professional, but remember, we arent THE Official Source.
3.)Deside on the General Layout.
Of course, this will be up to the Design Editor, but we can atleast figure out a basic layout for SWAG artists to start desiding what goes where, and what not.
4.)Start advertising. We need to let people know that this is actually happening.

19 May 2002, 07:45 AM
Good ideas Matt....

In that regard, if anyone has any art requests for the journal I need those asap. As of yet I've recieved zero requests for artwork and I cant gurantee I will be able to produce art at the drop of a hat.

Chris Curtis
19 May 2002, 09:26 AM
Originally posted by Matt Richard
1.)A theme for all of the writers to...write about.
IDEAS: Clone Wars, Jedi, RCRB
2.)A submissions guidline.
It cant be too strict, because if anyones like me, whenever I see a really strict submission guidline, I start laughing, and go back to DLOS. Make it professional, but remember, we arent THE Official Source.
3.)Deside on the General Layout.
Of course, this will be up to the Design Editor, but we can atleast figure out a basic layout for SWAG artists to start desiding what goes where, and what not.
4.)Start advertising. We need to let people know that this is actually happening.

1. First, I don't know that it's been decided to even do themes for issues. Second, it seems as though most of the material for the first issue will probably be the material that Kelly has received over the last year or so and has simply been waiting to publish.

Kelly, is there enough material for a full issue of is more needed?

2. There is already a submissions guideline available. It does state that it may be modified for the Journal's resurrection, but it will definitely be a good interim guideline. Find it here:

3. Yes, this should be up to the Editor(s). The Art Director (aka Bob) might have some input on this as well, but I don't really think the rest of us ought to be interferring in this area.

4. Agreed. This forum is one method to advertise. Notes can also be posted on community members' sites. Probably the biggest advertisement (as far as traffic, at least) will be a link from the 'Network main page when the issue is released. The three main Mailing Lists will also be good ways to advertise.

19 May 2002, 10:01 AM
Another few places to advertise are places like WOTC boards, and theforce.net. Even though I am not a member of either I do read them semi frequently and so do a lot of other pople.

I have not sent any requests yet as StClair and I am still hammering out details and I am not sure if what I am submitting will even be in the next journal. If you want I can send some your way so you can get a head start on it.

19 May 2002, 10:11 AM
Sounds great
Armadious , anything I can get from anyone at this point would be fantastic...I would hate to have to go up to an artists and tell him he has like, 3 days to get me 4 pieces of art or something. I've tried e-mailing kelly but I'm not sure if he's out of town or I have the wrong e mail addy or what....but if we are going to roll out the new journal in a few weeks Im going to need some submissions to work up art for soon.

Thanks again!:D

Matt Richard
19 May 2002, 03:16 PM
Originally posted by Chris Curtis

1. First, I don't know that it's been decided to even do themes for issues. Second, it seems as though most of the material for the first issue will probably be the material that Kelly has received over the last year or so and has simply been waiting to publish.

Kelly, is there enough material for a full issue of is more needed?

2. There is already a submissions guideline available. It does state that it may be modified for the Journal's resurrection, but it will definitely be a good interim guideline. Find it here:

3. Yes, this should be up to the Editor(s). The Art Director (aka Bob) might have some input on this as well, but I don't really think the rest of us ought to be interferring in this area.

4. Agreed. This forum is one method to advertise. Notes can also be posted on community members' sites. Probably the biggest advertisement (as far as traffic, at least) will be a link from the 'Network main page when the issue is released. The three main Mailing Lists will also be good ways to advertise.

Ok then, lets do some deciding:

1.) Should there be a theme?
I think that this should be decided by everyone involved in the editorial process, because it affects them. I vote that we should have a theme each month, and as a suggestion, Episode 2, and the things about it (info on the planets, etc.)

2.) The chief editors, along with Nealos should probably decide soon on whether to make any major changes to the guidlines. They need to do it soon because people need to know what to write.

3.) Agreed. Let the chief editors and BRodgers figure this one out.

4.) Well, I already have it in my signature and sub title. Ill try to see what else i can do.

ALSO.) If in fact we do just do an issue with just stuff from the past, St. Clair should probably get in contact with BRodgers on what stats need what type of art or whatnot, He should also contact me on what stats need converting, etc.

AND FINALLY.) This may seem unimportant, but I hope it makes sense to someone. We need to set a final date on when the Journal gets on the web and start publicizing the heck out of that date. Setting a date will get people antsy and waiting in anticipation, just like when we knew that Episode2 came out May 16th. If we just say its comming this summer, that doesnt spark as much anticipation as when we say June 30th.

ANyone agree?

The Admiral
19 May 2002, 04:13 PM

Should there be a theme? IMHO, no. It would limit the creativity of submitters, and that's a big no-no. In addition, a themed Journal will be exactly what SOME readers will want, but be completely useless to others. Whilst an E2 theme would probably be liked by all, an issue with a 'slicer' theme would not be.

If Johnny Submitter writies an article on, say, The Hapan Guild of Assassins, and thinks, yay, I'll send it to the Journal, we don't want to say, Great! This will be superb in our Assassin Themed Issue! Such a pity that's slated for the October 2004 Issue.


They've always looked good to me. If it ain't broke don' fix it.


Layout wise, I'd suggest keeping it simple, really.
Aside from that, I personally think having twin text columns lokks more proffessional, even though it causes a lot of hyphenated words. But then again, I keep my monitor set to 'eye-bustingly tiny', smaller display sizes might make that a little tough. Specific artwork for specific articles ought to be done on a case by case basis, it's really not tough getting images sized correctly.

What we are going to need from SWAG fairly early on is the basic Site graphics, headers for each section etc etc.


Aside from dropping notes into the mailing lists, and all the other selections, as always in a communal group, the most hits we get will be via word of mouth. I'm pretty sure that getting the word out will be simplicity itself. This whole advertising thing needn't be a big headache.
Of course, if the first issue gets zero hits, then I'll have to eat my words.

As for date, I agree. people work best with deadlines. Who're those guys that set deadlines for hardcopy? Oh. Darn. That'd be the Editors. OK, June 30 sounds good to me.

20 May 2002, 02:27 AM
Originally posted by Chris Curtis

Kelly, is there enough material for a full issue of is more needed?

I believe we have enough for an issue, though it may not be a BIG (double-sized or whatever) issue. Still sorting through what we've got.

A theme issue is probably not going to happen this time around. Not only are the submissions we've got so far rather eclectic, but I'm not sure what we could do for the main thing on everyone's minds right now (AotC) that hasn't been done already by SW Gamer or this very site.

I'm open to suggestions for future theme(s), however.

evan hansen
20 May 2002, 06:36 AM
Journal? Returning? Woooooo!

It's probably the single most useful tool to ever come out of the SW-RPG community, methinks. And I, for one, will be writing new material soon. Very, very soon. (And I shall be armed with helluva lot better writing abilities than when I wrote my other stuff 3 to 5...long...years....ago.)

Since I haven't been around in approximately -- and I'm estimating here -- forever and a day, I don't know what you need in the way of ideas for future journals, what's being done to brainstorm, etc... but if you want any thoughts, I'd be more than happy to lend them.

(On that note, the one thing that fits with this whole "theme" idea is an entire journal dedicated to crossover and original timelines. That is, there could be an entire journal dedicated to bizzare future timelines, past time lines, crossover timelines, time warp timelines, and alternate or modified timelines. Just a thought I had a while back for a supplement that I'll probably never do but could be molded into an entire Journal down the road.)

21 May 2002, 04:35 PM
IHMO, I would not make the Journal themed simply because you may well end up restricting the submissions that you recieve. Plus, you'll end up running out of themes....as long as it keeps going of course (hopefully) ;)

Just my two cents


Chris Curtis
21 May 2002, 07:30 PM
I'll throw in my opinion on the "let's not have themes" side of the argument, pretty much for the same reasons that The Admiral stated. I suppose in a few cases a themed issue might be appropriate (for instance if one had been releasing around now, then an "Old Republic" theme might work). However, I certainly wouldn't suggest that every issue be themed and themes should be rare.

All IMO, of course.

evan hansen
21 May 2002, 07:44 PM
Something else to consider on the theme front:

Themes inherently preclude a lot of material from being used. If this thing is just coming back, it might be a lot harder to generate an entire theme journal versus just using what people submit.

And something that may have already come up... what's to be done about timing? Is this thing going to come out on a scheduled basis? Deadlines can be hard to meet when real life gets in the way. But they let the informed reader know he or she can come back and there'll definately be something new for them at such-and-such time.

. o O ( Ah, midnight musings... )

6 June 2002, 07:50 PM
Ok, a note on the themes. When I proposed it, I did not intend that the theme preclude other submissions. For example: say we were putitng out a "Clone Wars" themed issue next month to capitalize on AotC's success. Basically, you'd have the articles by the regular authors, such as the editors or anyone else who does the same column repeatedly, themed for AOTC. All other submissions still go in, you just try and get two, three, maybe four articles in an issue along a certain theme. Do a theme-related cover image, but then...ya know, that's it. That's all you have to do. You don't reject submission that don't fit the theme, it just gives the editors something to work toward and acts as an "idea farm" for the columnists.

Aaron B'Aviv
9 June 2002, 12:41 PM
Moridin's idea runs along the same vein as Star Wars Gamer's 'themes'... There was some material that kept with the theme, but it didn't mean that everything in the magazine had to go along with the theme. The Rogue's Gallery, the Opening Column, the lead article or two, and maybe the PrC was all that had to do with the theme.

I like that idea, as it does give a little more coherence to the idea that the OJ is a magazine and not a repository of stats like SWRPGNetwork is.

Dan Kyrinov
9 June 2002, 08:01 PM
Hey, everyone. I apologize for dropping off the radar for so long, I've been sorting out account information and passwords for many other message boards since my last post on this thread. I am planning to go on a message board blitz across about twenty message boards that either have some role-players on them in force or are about role-playing alone. Before I start, I'd like to get some information and ask some important questions. Nealos and Kelly, if one/both of you can e-mail me at DanKyrinov@aol.com I will quickly respond and get what I need to start as a submissions collector and general advertiser.