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From Geek to Geekle: Presenting on Humor

Dexter Woltman

By Dexter Woltman

I always considered myself a geek—frequently opting to showcase my Star Wars or LEGO collections over fitting in with my peers. So, when a company named Geekle reached out to Brunette Games to present at an upcoming event, I knew I had to say yes. Over the week of August 31st, Geekle hosted an online Game Development Global Summit. Experts in game design came together to give valuable insight into the industry.

I had the honor of taking part in the Global Summit. At Brunette Games, I developed a growing expertise in writing humor for the casual game market. I decided to share these skills with the world by presenting how humor can bridge a player's investment in the game they're playing. The official abstract of my presentation:

At Brunette Games, we’ve always believed in three pillars of game storytelling: conflict, mystery, and connection. While there are various forms of connection, one of its cores is the emotional investment players form with the characters and story in a game. One way to bridge this connection is through the use of humor. This talk includes:

- How humor is essential to certain genres.
- How to write effective humor.
- How to use humor to bridge the pillars of storytelling.

To see my presentation for yourself, check out the YouTube link below!

 


'The Dreamslippers Series' Hits the Magic 7

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We can't believe it's been this long already, but the Dreamslippers Series turns seven this month. To mark the lucky 7 anniversary, we've enrolled the series in the Smashwords Summer Winter Sale. This means deep discounts (and one freebie) on the ebook versions of all three original novels, as well as the boxed set, which includes a bonus novella. The sale ends July 31.

For those of you who are new to Brunette Games, the Dreamslippers is Lisa Brunette's sexy-but-cozy murder mystery series, which we released between 2014 and 2016 under Brunette Games' book-publishing imprint, Sky Harbor Press. All three books in the series won indieBRAG medallions, awarded to only the top tier of independently published books, and the second novel in the series, Framed and Burning, was also a finalist for the prestigious Nancy Pearl Book Award and nominated for a RONE Award. The books have been praised by Kirkus Reviews, Readers Lane, Book Fidelity, Wall-to-Wall Books, BestThrillers.com, Mystery Sequels, and many others. All three enjoy Amazon ratings of 4-5 stars.

About the Books

The Dreamslippers solve crimes using their psychic ability to 'slip' into your dreams. But that isn't easy. 

CITF

Cat McCormick comes of age both as a Dreamslipper and a private investigator in the series debut, Cat in the Flock. Following a mother and daughter on the run, she goes undercover in a fundamentalist church. FREE during the Smashwords Sale.

F&B

It was supposed to be a much-needed vacation in Miami, meant to snap Cat out of a persistent depression. But when her great uncle’s studio goes up in flames, killing his assistant, Cat must find out who’s really to blame. Half off in the sale.

BTTT

What happens when your client thinks she knows who the killer is, but you don’t believe her? Cat and Granny Grace aren't too sure Nina Howell fell under the spell of a domineering, conservative talk show host... until he starts to look guilty. The case brings powerful new developments in Cat’s dreamslipping skill as she works to find the truth. Half off in the sale.

Boxedset

Get all three books, plus a bonus novella prequel--Work of Light, Granny Grace's origin story--only available in the boxed set. Receive a discount of 25% now in the Smashwords sale.

Rather Have a Paper Copy?

You can always purchase the Dreamslippers Series in paperback from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other outlets. 

Interested in Other Brunette Games Books?

We also published the only guide governing the romantic lives of D&D characters.

 


Brunette Games Team Promotions!

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Dexter Woltman, recently promoted to writer|designer II, sporting his Brunette Games logo jacket.

Brunette Games has grown by leaps and bounds over the past year. We're now a crew of six full-time writer/designers, supported by a pool of five contract voice actors who voice our scripts. One measure of our success is the individual professional growth you can see in our many team promotions in the first half of 2021. Here's a breakdown, and note that we use the title "writer/designer" to capture our team members' dual roles as both game designers and writers of all manner of in-game text, from character dialogue to tutorial messages.

Dexter Woltman: Writer|Designer II

Employee No. 3 at Brunette Games, Dexter has worked on 16 released titles to-date, which includes a wide variety of casual and mid-core games, from My Beauty Spa to Kingdoms of Heckfire. He joined us as a contractor during his senior year in Scriptwriting at Webster University, stepped right into a full-time job as writer|designer I once he graduated in 2019, and was just promoted to writer|designer II, in recognition of his increased leadership and innovation on our clients' projects.  

Jenna Faulkner: Writer|Designer I

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Writer/Designer Jenna Faulkner proudly displaying her new biz card.

The fastest promotion our company's ever seen happened this winter when Jenna went from writer/editor to writer/designer I after just six weeks on the job. Maybe it's the fact that she came to us with a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing already in hand, or maybe she was just born for this kind of work! Whatever the case, Jenna's been a key asset as writer and editor for our G5 titles, Homicide Squad: New York Stories and Crime Mysteries: Find Objects, as well as pitching in on Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff and a couple of meaty, unannounced projects where she's already proved her mettle at designing narratives and characters that integrate superbly well with gameplay. 

Amanda VanNierop: Associate Writer|Designer

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Amanda VanNierop, associate writer|designer, in her spiffy Brunette Games polo.

In just a year and a half on the job, Amanda has racked up credits on eight released titles, including the high-profile games Sweet Escapes and Disney Frozen Adventures. Wise beyond her years and in possession of enviable talent and confidence, she started out as an editor but quickly took on both writing and designing duties as well, proving she could handle some tough assignments, hence the promotion to associate writer|designer. Amanda's with us full-time for the summer, but the rest of the year she keeps up the good work while finishing her double majors in English and Psychology. In her spare time, she wields a sword in her fencing classes, too! We're all in awe.

Anthony Valterra: VP Game Design & Strategy

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VP Game Design and Strategy, Anthony Valterra, one-half of Brunette Games leadership.

Along with our creative team promotions, with a growing staff has come expanded roles for leadership as well, with two key title changes.

First, Anthony's done a bang-up job as business director over the past two years, and a good deal of our tremendous growth is to his credit. He's also written, designed, and consulted on 14 released titles since joining Brunette Games, including Ava's Manor: A Solitaire Story and Sweet Escapes. He's more than earned his new title as vice president, game design and strategy, which does a better job of encompassing his dual roles, too, as well as showcasing his veteran status in the game industry, having shepherded illustrious brands such as Dungeons & Dragons and Avalon Hill prior to the top-grossing games currently under his purview.

Lisa Brunette: Chief Creative Officer

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CCO Lisa Brunette, with her award for five years at the helm of Brunette Games.

Last but not least is founder and owner Lisa Brunette, a game-industry influencer who shaped the way we design stories and characters in casual games through her work on top titles Matchington Mansion, Lily's Garden, and literally hundreds of other released titles in her nearly 15-year career in games. With one foot in the narrative puzzle genre and the other in interactive novel apps, Lisa has grown Brunette Games from a solo act to a highly respected team of creatives in just five years. While she never imagined herself in C-level shoes, she finally found the right title for her work in this one: chief creative officer.

Join us in congratulating the team on their well-deserved promotions! Here's to another successful year.