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An Editorial Approaches...Command?

by Joshua "Darien" Maciel

Let me get right to the point. I want the editorials to be interesting. Not to say that they don't have their merits now, but I want people to look forward to updates to see something *new*, not some rehashed old-school new-school debate. I'm not trying to insult the writers of any editorials, because I don't think it's their fault. Speaking as an editorial writer, I think that it's difficult to instantly come up with a fresh new idea every week. So I'm going to petition you guys for ideas.

Things I find interesting are generally editorials that shine light on things rather than just make a debate. For instance Dan Crislip wrote in more or less just to inform people that there was a guy saying that video games are not art. He didn't focus as much on the argument as the information. I highly enjoyed reading the editorial.

Michael Harnest's editorial on the ending of FF7 caught my interest as well. It laid out, pretty simply, hints from the game and how it implied an ending. He wasn't trying to be argumentative, just trying to point out things that other people had missed. This is along the same lines as the editorial on the Gnostic influences in Xenogears. Editorials educating instead of debating. I like that.

Maybe the reason I like that so much is because it's very like a newspaper. Many editorials are sent it to inform people that something that was printed doesn't tell the whole story, and to expand on it. It isn't necessarily argumentative, just more of a footnote. I'm not saying that there isn't a place for debate in editorials, but I think that the other types of editorials are quite overlooked.

Personally I'm trying to work on an editorial about the religious significance of Tales of Destiny, much the same way I wrote ones for Xenogears and Grandia. There is one problem with editorials like these -- they don't inspire editorials in response. Most of the time I got responses, they would add something, or they would just be a "thank you for posting" sort of thing. Of course, many of the additions could be posted as short addendum editorials or whatnot, but it doesn't generate the same amount of editorials as a straight debate does.

I also know that things like religion and such are very heavy topics. Many people just want light-hearted debate and banter, maybe a little anti-FF editorial here and there. So I want to be able to keep those people interested too. Quite the conundrum as you see. So where does that leave the editorial section? Stuck between a rock and a hard place?

I know that there are some really smart cookies reading this right now, and I know that some of you have brilliant ideas for editorials, that I couldn't even dream to have. So please share them with me. Just share your input. I want to know what you think of the editorial section over time if you've been reading for a while. If you've just started reading, I'd like to know what made you start. I'd like to know if you think the quality has improved since I took over, or if it's been getting worse.

You'd be amazed at the lack of feedback I get in regards to this column, so I'm begging each and every one of you to send me something. Even if I get thousands of letters of feedback, I'd like to hear it. A sentence, a page, an essay -- it's all good. I'm sorry this editorial is so dry, but then again, this is a pretty dry subject.

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