Post-GDC 2014 Week: Early Drafts for “Fewer Tifas, or More Sephiroths? Male Sexualization in Games”

My week-long post-mortem of my GDC Narrative Summit presentation continues. This time, I’ll be disabusing you all of any romantic notions about my speech by showing some of the drafts I went through to get there. While most of them are rather cringeworthy, they also offer quite a few points that I wasn’t able to make in my speech, or in some cases, points that I had more time to think about and ultimately reject. If you’re really intrigued to see how the talk took shape and possibly learn more about male gaze, read on!

Of course, this means you also get to see all the stuff I might recycle for future talks as well. Hmm, maybe I didn’t think this through…

First Draft – word vomit

This would be the bit where I initially panicked and wrote down almost everything I could think of that came to mind on the topic… in prose form, no less, with a few too many self-deprecating jokes. Considering this version was about 57 minutes long, it clearly got edited down, though in hindsight, a lot of it still ended up informing the final version in some way or another. There was also more analysis of the male gaze and suggestions on how to get in the right mindset.

Second Draft – first outline

While this is still a ways off the final product, you can see things taking shape. Abandoning prose in favor of outline form was a large help and helped me get it closer to time – though 37 minutes was still a lot over the target. This version still emphasized a lot of the material on Male Gaze, the fanservice in FF7, etc. Was still missing something and needed a significant edit.

Third Draft – now we’re getting there

This is extremely close to the final version, with only minor tweaks to the main bulk of it. The main difference was that the character trait section was significantly larger here than in the final version – and considering I ran out of time for that section in the final talk, I probably could have shrunk it down even further (or better yet, shrunk down earlier sections).

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