Finding a lead writer

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Recruitment.png This article covers a recruitment advert or template!

Recruitment adverts are utilized by the project management department to find new developers who would like to contribute to the project.

This is a detailed recruitment advert for finding a lead writer for PARPG.

Why are you looking for a lead writer?

In a nutshell: our writing efforts never took off in a consistent and structured way. When the project started, we've agreed upon some basic setting guidelines and wanted to leave the rest to the to be found writers. Unfortunately that process didn't work out well in reality. Interested writers in the past mostly focused on fleshing out NPCs or submitting potential storylines for the game. At the same time, no writer was really willing to commit to fleshing out setting elements and what kind of writing themes would be worth exploring in the game. So now we've got loads of writing ideas (TM) sitting in the wiki but there is almost no consistency to them. Therefore we have decided to tackle the problem from a slighty different angle than in the past.

We're looking for a lead writer who would be willing to commit to the more substantial parts of the writing process. We're looking for somebody who is not afraid of making decisions in the fields of setting, themes to explore and storyline of the game. Obviously somebody who is familiar with the post-apocalypse genre would be strongly prefered.

What do you have to offer?

Creative freedom
What does creative freedom mean in this regard? What we offer is that the lead writer has a substantial say in the direction the project will take in the future. You make the calls in the field and decide about setting, theme and storyline details. Obviously there's a catch to it. There are a few setting details that are not up to discussion: the game will take place in a post-apocalyptic nuclear winter scenario. Game mechanics are currently far more fleshed out than writing details, so obviously writing efforts need to be somewhat compatible with the agreed upon game mechanics.
Dedicated lead developers
The good news is: we have a number of talented and dedicated lead developers who are contributing to the project. So you would be part of an enthusiastic and experienced team to make this game happen.
Stable project infrastructure
Ambitious large scale game projects highly depend on infrastructure. We've got it all covered: we run a blog to keep the community up to date. Source code and assets reside in version control. Developers communicate over IRC and forums. There is extensive project documentation. You can download the current version of the game and play around with it. Joining this project will be more like boarding a bus than building a bus. You just hop on it and we'll drive you around safely.
Healthy project culture
Most of us are quite nice folks. We're easy to get along with. We have a good sense of humour. Really!
One release under our belt
Last but not least: we've already shipped a first techdemo release of PARPG. While this doesn't sound very exciting at first sight, it's something 90% of ambitious projects fail to achieve. We have experience how to package our game for various platform, how to advertize our releases, how to plan for the next release.

And what kind of compensation do you offer?

PARPG is an free of charge, open source indie game. That means that everyone on the project works for free on it. There are quite different motivations for working on such a project, some of us want to gain some experience working in team environments, others are suckers for old school RPGs and always wanted to create one themselves. You might consider to break into the game industry, but to do so, a portfolio and prior project experience is pretty much essential. So while we can't offer any monetary compensation, there is a multitude of good reasons to contribute to such a project and to enjoy the ride :-)

What kind of skills are you looking for?

Sorted by level of importance, in descending order:

Communication skills
Due the distributed nature of the projects (we have contributors from all over the world), strong communication skills are most important for interested writers. We're reasonable lads and we're searching for somebody with a similar mindset. Furthermore the project heavily relies on live communication over our IRC channel. In the past interested writers were not really in touch with us, so it was difficult to collaborate with them. We're looking for somebody who isn't afraid of collaboration and constructive discussion.
Language skills
While not all of us are native speakers (I am not, as you can prolly tell from this advert), the lead writer position will be somewhat more demanding in this regard than other positions. We're looking for somebody who has a native speaker level in written English. It's fine if you're not a native speaker, but if you can't make yourself clear, collaboration will be a frustrating experience.
Wiki editing skills
We want to be totally upfront about it: the writing positions on the team will heavily rely on wiki work. Most of the writing content will be fleshed out at our project wiki first before it finds its way into the game. You don't need to have much prior wiki editing experience, but learning the ropes of wiki editing will be essential for the job.

What level of commitment would be required?

Although our philosophy is that real life comes first, we do expect a lead writer to dedicate at least 5 hours per week.

Where would I have to start?

We've categorized all the existing writing proposals into reasonable categories: setting, storyline, themes, etc. The best way to get started is to check out the Setting, Storyline & Story mechanics articles listed here: Department:Writing.

After checking out these articles we'll have to discuss which aspects should be kept and which ones should be thrown away.

How to get in contact with us

As the project heavily relies on communication over IRC, visiting our IRC channel is actually the prefered method of contact. You can do so by clicking on this link in your browser:

In case nobody is around in IRC (you should give us 10-15 minutes to realize that somebody is around), feel free to rather post an introduction at our forums:

We'll get back to you there.

Huge change of plans

As we had a huge number of interested writers applying for the position, we have decided to approach the writer application process in a different way. Check out the details here: Writer application

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