It's been four years (to the day) since I last wrote something on this blog. It's been a weird and interesting trip. Here's the cliffsnotes version:
In late 2018, I launched a successful Kickstarter for my Ballista line of gaming supplements. Up to that point, Arcana Creations had started stepping up production both in terms of gaming material as well as launching our Arcana Elements imprint that did fiction and non-fiction books. We were also increasing our exposure via in person shows and conventions. Things were good!
In 2019, things got busier and since I also have a full time job, the first casualty of my busy schedule was this very blog. The shows were a greater success, fulfillment of the KS was finished, and we were doing more projects. We even signed on to help another indie-publisher to take a project off their hands in order to rewrite, do layout, and publish a small RPG title for them! Things were looking up and 2020 was going to be a FANTASTIC year.
2020 was fantastic alright... fantastically bad.
|Licensed by Louis Porter, Jr. Design
Covid hit and impacted the world and pretty much shut everything down in its tracks. Any momentum and growth we had was essentially lost with the pandemic. Plans to try and direct the flow of traffic from shows to an online store never happened. Everything got put on hold.
2021 wasn't much better and I lost my father at the start of that year. Having taken a year off due to the pandemic, I decided to start publishing things regardless but I wasn't in the headspace for it. We managed to publish two novels that year and started doing shows towards the end of that year as things were opening up more and more.
Realizing that the momentum Arcana Creations had eroded in 2020 and 2021, I increased the shows in 2022 but my circumstances changed once again and effectively, our base of operations moved from Montreal to a small hamlet about a couple outside of Montreal in the Eastern Townships. We bought an OLD house which gives me the space I needed but the tradeoff was the amount of work that we had (and still need) to do for it. The second half of 2022 has been predominated by the purchase, move, and basic renos.
At the start of 2023, things are looking GOOD again. Creatively speaking, I've gotten my spark back. I have have clearer picture of various objectives I want to pursue this year. Most importantly, a variety of projects that got stuck in limbo were becoming unstuck.
And then, Wizards of the Coast basically shit the bed.
While a lot of things have since been sorted out, the repercussions will be long felt for the tabletop industry. Some of my prior publications and current projects are being re-worked to avoid any future entanglements but I'm equally excited to do so. I won't go into too much detail about that whole OGL drama here but it's given me another kick in the pants with regards to some of my projects.
All that said, the past 4 years have given me some perspective on where I want to take Arcana Creations as well as what is feasible and practical to do. I've taken a couple steps back in order to move forward again and it seems right that I go back and start writing here again. I'm also been talking to another friend in the publishing space about partnering up and doing some joint projects together -- just like I did when I started out back in 2009.