I’m at Unpub this weekend. It’s going well so far. I was on 3 panels which was a new experience. I was brought onto the panels later in the process so I didn’t have much time to prepare. Luckily the rest of the panelists (AnnaMaria Jackson-Phelps, Marti & Sarah Mahood-Wormuth, Jennifer Graham-Macht, and Jay Treat) were great and the audience had enough questions so it worked as a group conversation.
Two of the panels were about being interviewed about your game and one was about feedback. In both panels there were a good amount of questions from people new to the board game design community. And it made me reflect a bit on my own journey. I remember the first gaming event I attended. BostonFIG In 2014. I was only a couple of months into game design. I had a copy of my prototype and I didn’t know anyone. I walked around, played one prototype, and left. I was too nervous to talk to anyone.
To go from that to sitting on a panel and when the audience introduces themselves knowing half of them by name is a big change. I talked about this journey in my post on networking. It’s a process that starts to snowball. Once you start by joining a design group or going to a convention, it starts to get easier.
So if you are just starting out it might seem daunting. But if you stick with it you can quickly find your place in the community. Don’t be afraid to say hi or ask questions.