The August 2023 Review

A pile of calendars and a pencil. The text says "The August Review".

August was full of waiting around.


So this month, I’m working on a small magazine as its editor. It’s likely going to be a one-off, although the clients suggested they might want to publish more regularly in a year. This is all good with me and my assistant editor. It uses a skill set we already have, with additional aspects to learn. Our timeline did fall out the window though. Because we needed to reach out to a lot of busy people, we’re still waiting to hear back from most of them while working on things that are within our control. I expect that September is going to be very busy since we will need to start finalising some of those pages for our layout designer.


While I have not played a game this month due to scheduling conflicts, it turns out that we’re going to Seni Kita by HAUS KCH. Eric will be running a couple of games on the weekend of Sept 16-17, and I will be talking about TTRPG as a subculture in Kuching and why women should play. More about that when the time draws near, but we may have 1-2 slots available at the table on both days if you want to check it out.


Since my last update, I’ve been enthralled with two games, namely Dave the Diver, and Palia.

Screenshot from Dave the Diver, showing a boat on the waters at night, with a sushi restaurant illuminated in the background.
Dave the Diver and business partner Cobra in a boat at night.

Much have been said about Dave the Diver. It’s an underwater exploration game and a restaurant management game. There is a vegetable and fish farming component, and some mini games. The underwater part was educational since the creatures you meet there are mostly real sea creatures. The loading screen helpfully introduces you to the denizens that you will spear or that will try to kill you. The NPCs are quirky and memorable. There are loads of cutscenes and they are all awesome and hilarious. I finished it fairly quickly and kept on playing to collect a few other creatures that eluded me.

And then came Palia.

A screenshot from the game Palia, featuring my character in the centre, waving at the "camera". Behind her is part of the village and further back is a stone mountain with a crescent carved out of the peak.
My Palia avatar waving at the “camera” from somewhere in the village.

At time of writing, Palia is under open beta, so some things still break, and some skills don’t seem worth developing (looking at you, Furniture Making), it’s a nice, no-stress, game where you can explore the world and build your character at your own speed. Quests unlock as you level up your skills or discover something in the world, and are not time-sensitive. If other players are involved, it’s more about cooperation than competition. I haven’t opened Steam since Palia came out in closed beta.

r/Writers Discord

When I joined the r/Writers Discord, I did not expect much. The subreddit was okay, moving at a speed that I was comfortable with. I’m aware there are other writing subreddits, but I didn’t want to overwhelm my homepage. One of the mods started a Discord and I was one of the first to join. Before long, I volunteered to manage the channels and community. Now it’s my favourite Discord server and writing community – with a range of writing and publishing experiences, and people who are friendly and generous with their knowledge.

I run a few Discord servers, but this is the biggest one that requires more attention. I want the community to have some ownership to the place, so I always like to say the mods are here to provide support and advice if you want to run/lead something on the server, but don’t leave us holding the bag. With our membership quickly approaching 500, I think it’s time to appoint more mods and hand over some of my duties.

Other Matters

  • I signed up for a challenge to write one short story every day in September. Short stories isn’t my wheelhouse, and I doubt if I’ll be able to churn one out every day, so this would be interesting. Updates here.
  • Looking forward to a friend and ex-colleague’s wedding reception on Sept 2!
  • Pelikan Hub Kuching on Sept 22, which you can read about in my previous blog entry linked. September is going to be busy!

Links Roundup

A no-commentary list of articles and media I found interesting enough to share on my Discord server.

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