Today marks the 5th anniversary of Critical Path, which blows my mind. I spent so long nurturing the idea, writing drafts, revising my advice, watching the landscape change around me…it’s surprising that it’s been a real thing that lives outside of my brain for this long.
When it was published, online game journalism had started to assert its inevitable dominance, so I had to really make sure my book wasn’t outdated the moment it was published. Looking at it now, I realize new readers might find the frequent use of the word “magazine” to be quaint, but they’re still out there — I still read magazines every week, in digital form on my iPad. But part of my goal with the book was to offer solid writing advice that wasn’t reliant on a medium. I could only offer advice based on my specific experience, but I tried to consciously make the advice as universal as possible.
And that’s the legacy, for me. One of the most gratifying reactions to the book has been people who said it helped them become a better writer even though they had no aspirations to review games. Enjoying or knowing about games certainly makes the book a smoother read, but I’m extremely happy that the book turned out to be more useful than that for some readers.
By the way…only three people have let me know that they found the secret chapter. That’s one of two puzzles hidden in all editions of the book. There’s a simple secret message encoded on the cover, but for the secret bonus chapter, you’ll need to be even more observant.
Good luck, and thanks for five years of support!