Posted by: SOE | January 20, 2009

Writer’s Cramp

It’s been a couple of years in the making, but last week we got the proofs for our chapter in Writing for Video Game Genres: From FPS to RPG.

“We” being myself and my former SOE office-mate Steve Danuser, a/k/a So Mean, a/k/a That Jerk, a/k/a Mr. Moorgard.

The first time I actually met Steve was sometime after I’d been hired for EverQuest II. I was in the office kitchen grabbing a can of soda (at omg, so inexpensive! prices) before heading out the door for home. Steve was grabbing his fiftieth cup of coffee that day and said, “You know…those drinks are only for consumption in the office.”

I was so kerflummoxed that I babbled incoherently that I hardly ever drank soda and it was hot and I was going to start drinking it in the office as I walked out so that should count…and he smirked. That Jerk.

At one point, my cubicle was in a room that happened to share a wall with Steve’s office, although there was no direct route between them. You had to wind down one hall and then another, which was getting on my nerves as Mr. Moorgard did not go see you if you had questions; you went to him. I finally coerced him into giving me his IM info so that I could save wear and tear on my shoes. During one crunch night I made an off-color comment in IMs and a very loud holler for HR shook flakes of drywall onto my desk.

“Er…was that you?” I typed to him, giggling nervously. Of course it was and thankfully, no one from HR responded to his (totally unnecessary) cry. =/ So Mean.

Steve switched to EQII’s design team and someone thought it would be a good idea to put us both in the same office. We both write! Surely we would get along! It started off well enough, with both of us measuring the space to figure out where all our bookcases would go. By the end of our second day, however, our coworkers thought we might actually kill each other.

But eventually, we got past the growling and incidental violence (I never meant to hit him directly in the eye with a stuffed owl…honest). I wholeheartedly admire Steve’s way with words. He got over my sudden and deafening outbursts of vocal creativity (with the use of headphones, mostly). He’s the only guy who ever wrote a song for me…although it’s not exactly what I would have imagined. You can listen to us singing it on SOE’s official podcast number 4.

That’s right, kids; it was that long ago!

Seamster And Danuser

When I wanted to work on the IGDA’s genres book, I wanted Steve to write with me. He took my rambling thoughts and made them cohesive. He devised the flow of our outline, provided structure to our prose and came to my rescue when my mind went blank (a state, he would say, that is permanent with me).

The book’ll come out in a couple of months and I’ve been very happy (mostly) to work with Steve on our chapter. He may be That Jerk and So Mean a lot of the time, but he’s still Mr. Moorgard to me!

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