Week 824

What’s this? I’m blogging about my work on a weekly basis – a simple way to track and archive whatever it is I spend my time on.

Last week was quarterly financials week, as I had to declare my revenue taxes to the Dutch tax administration. Like the one before, this was not a great quarter. I probably spent too much time on those failed grant applications (but, you know, no guts no glory). The reality of the numbers urged me to spend more time pitching articles to various clients, though. These articles will never make me rich, but they do help to get out of the red, and in fact I felt quite good about my business by the end of the week.

Otherwise, things went on as usual. Tuesday night, I had tea with Jaïn Nigtevegt of Flavour, continuing last month’s conversation. It was useful both to hear about his projects, at least one of which I’ll be writing about, as well as to use him as a sounding board for my own projects.

Speaking of those projects, on Wednesday I published the fifth Hybrid Writer’s Podcast, the one with Sidney Vollmer. So far, this is the one that goes furthest into digital territory. Although I didn’t do much other hybrid writer’s stuff last week, I did get a bunch of email from fellow writers who wanted to somehow get involved, which was great.

During the week I played Sunset Overdrive on Xbox One, the open world action game by Insomniac Games, which I enjoyed. Thursday morning, I wrote my review for nrc.next. It was in there on Friday morning, the first piece in the new format of longer, but less frequent games articles.

I also published two older newspaper articles here. They were months old, so it was high time I put them online: Een droom van een spel – No Man’s Sky en het uitkijken naar games (on Monday) and Anders kijken en denken – Draagbare periscopen en VR-diorama’s (on Friday).

Thursday night, I took the train to Delft to do a talk about the Tom Cruise vehicle / Doug Liman movie Edge of Tomorrow. I liked that film a lot, and it was obviously inspired by videogames, which is probably why Filmhuis Lumen invited me. The turnout wasn’t huge, but the talk went well, and people asked good questions afterwards. Somehow I was all serene and happy traveling back; walking through mild autumn weather and an ancient, beautifully lit city center must’ve helped. I ate a Domino’s pizza too, which was delicious in a terrible way.

On Friday, I visited Two Tribes Games, equipped with an outline of the full storyline for our upcoming shooter/platformer RIVE and some mock-ups for the game’s dialog system. The team seems to be on board with everything so far, however, co-founder Collin van Ginkel was still vacationing in Myanmar, and you never know whether he’ll upend the tea table on his return.

The couple of hours I worked during the weekend were pretty productive too. On Saturday, I finally finished the first draft of my essay about Dropstuff project The Bridge, and on Sunday I worked on an appeal for the Dutch Foundation for Literature. After having my grant application to write the novel Sexy Sadie turned down a while ago, I received the thinking behind their decision last week. It’s actually quite reasonable, but I have some interesting counter-arguments regardless. To be continued!