Hmm. I’ve been around here for a little while, but I never introduced myself. Here goes.
I normally live in Korea, but this calendar year I am in the US on sabbatical. As one of my spare-time hobbies, I’ve decided to pick up IF again. My experience with IF probably began in the early 80s, back when it was called “text adventures.” I remember enjoying it a lot. I was a big reader, so I was used to creating worlds in my mind from words on a page, and although the words in those text adventures tended to be somewhat simpler than many of the books I read, the interaction with the work made up for any narrative shortcomings–I could create my own narratives.
I suppose I moved on from text adventures to hybrid text/graphic adventures (I played a lot of Roberta Williams’ games, for example), CRPGs, and the like. I probably never consciously came to this conclusion, but I guess I assumed that text adventures died out as graphical and general computing capabilities improved. But one day in the mid 90s I somehow stumbled across IF–I think it was the IF Comp that probably first put me back on the trail–and I suddenly got very excited. Here were all those text adventures I used to love, but now they were so much better! I remember playing Spider and Web and having my mind absolutely blown. I played Photopia and, though it wasn’t what I had traditionally associated with “text adventures,” probably cried for the first time ever while playing a game. I got lost in Curses and never really wanted to find my way out again. But I did, and I started messing around with Inform. I got a good way into a game of my own with I6, but then in the late 90s my studies took over my life and IF fell by the wayside.
Fast-forward to this year. Though still busy, I found myself with a little more free time now that I was on sabbatical. My old I6 files were long since gone, but the stories were still in my head. I had dabbled in I7 on and off after it came out, but I never stuck with it. Now, though, I was determined. I have since begun rebuilding one of my old stories in I7, and I have gotten further along than ever before. The project is proving to be more complex than I had originally imagined, but this time I know that I will complete it. It may happen this year, or it may happen next year, but I know that I will finally finish my first game and join the ranks of IF authors. I hope that what I have to offer will be some recompense for everything that I have received from the community over the years.
I guess I’ve been on the boards here for only a few months now, but I can say that I enjoy spending time here, and I’ve found it to be a very helpful and welcoming community. My hope is that someday I will be knowledgeable enough in I7 to give a little back myself.