Happy 10 Year Blogiversary!

10 Year Blogiversary

This blog is almost ready to get its Hogwarts letter!

Thank you to everyone who has joined and continues to join me in nerding out about video games 🥰🤗 I can’t wait to share more with you! What were you doing 10 years ago?

Site Updates: Mid-Year Edition

Happy middle of the work week to all of you! If the week hasn’t treated you right so far, you have two more days to kick its butt and I believe in you. You can get through it!

Today was a bit of an impromptu cleaning/organization day, so I’ve been doing some background maintenance to old posts and things like that. I have a few updates to the site to let you know about!

Contact Me Page Updated

A few months ago I updated my Contact Me page, but then I checked it today and realized it already needed updating again! So here I’ve updated the links to my YouTube channel, Tumblr, Twitter, and Instagram – as well as my email. If you ever need to contact me for any reason at all, feel free to use any of these methods (or follow, or whatever you’d like).

Old Stories and Gameplay Archived

It was time to put some things to rest, and while I will always cherish and continue to improve on what’s left of The Creeper Legacy, the series and other small things I’ve done are now compiled in the Archives page. If at any point these things are revisited, I will definitely let you know.

The Creeper Legacy Table of Contents

While being archived, the table of contents for the Creeper Legacy has been fully updated. I’ve also added a note for those chapters that are missing images (basically all of them 😢), so you don’t have to guess.

The Great Re-Tagging/Re-Categorizing

I have updated and re-configured tags and categories, which doesn’t really mean much for you unless you’re into using them to find things. You can use the dropdown box on the right to look at specific categories, and all tags on posts should be up to date.

Thank you so much for stopping by and I hope to see you around again! Happy gaming <3

So Many Dreams

Hey, everyone! I’ve been on a short break while I get some life things in order. I hope that you’ve been doing well. I’ve been thinking of so many new things to try and begin and I’m really excited about the process, but I’ve also overwhelmed myself with Stuff To Do. Show of hands if you are in the same boat. My heart goes out to you, my friend.

First, a bit of news. You may (or may not) have noticed that my blog is now called Confessions of a Lady Gamer and has a domain to go with it. Why? Well, let me just tell you… haha, it’s kind of a fluke. WordPress ran a discount on upgrades around St. Patrick’s day and I was like OOH, WHAT A DEAL. Then I got all signed up and changed my mind and got a refund. The domain is still registered for a year, so maybe this will become a new home. Idk.

Anyway, I guess that means I need to confess some gaming things at some point? More on that in a later post.

Until then, let me know if there’s anything you wanna see on here or tell me what you’ve been up to!

Take care <3

How I Became Disenchanted by Harry Potter

I went back and forth about whether I want to share this little story or not, mostly because it’s something I still feel a bit of bitterness about and I want to inform more than rant, but ultimately I decided it’s a nice learning experience for those of us who create things. A cautionary tale, if you will.

As I’ve mentioned, I started my own company in October 2018. Initially, I set out to create jewelry inspired by fandoms (gaming, books, movies, etc.) because I’ve had tons of ideas stashed in my mind for a very long time and this was an excellent opportunity to get them out. I’m sure many of you can relate: our ideas never end.

Excited to get started, I jumped in (admittedly without doing much research beforehand), starting an Etsy shop and creating my first five pieces. Each piece was inspired by my favorite franchise of all time: Harry Potter, of course.

There were some pieces that were pretty literal in their interpretations, like a pendant with a quote by Ron Weasley on it, Hedwig in her cage, or this keychain:

Originally called “The Dark Mark”

Then there were some that were more abstract or loosely based, such as a piece featuring pink ombre floral beads inspired by Hermione’s Yule Ball gown in Goblet of Fire, or the necklace below – this is important, and you’ll see why in a second.

Originally called “The Invisibility Cloak”

The Invisibility Cloak was immediately my favorite piece, and also my first two sales (because my friends are awesome and supportive).

As a relatively new seller on Etsy and as someone who has only ever used or had any connection with Etsy when I’m looking for handcrafted fandom-style items, I didn’t think much about what I was calling these items or how I was tagging them, except that I tagged them to ensure they would be found on the site by those who would enjoy them. If you do a search on Etsy for “Harry Potter” you get hundreds of thousands of items as a result, and I wanted to make sure I was one of them. Because Potterheads unite! Or something.

Once I had my Etsy shop up and running, I set out to talk about my stuff and let people know it exists, as many sellers do. Because The Invisibility Cloak was my favorite, it was the main piece I excitedly threw around all over the place. I was so thrilled for this new adventure and I needed EVERYONE to know it.

One night, in giddiness-fueled impulse, I decided I wanted J.K. Rowling to see the necklace, so I tweeted at her (because Twitter is her favorite haunt and all). It said something along the lines of, “I made this necklace, loosely based on Harry’s invisibility cloak! What do you think?” It included a picture and a link to its Etsy listing.

But, uh, I guess that’s where I made a mistake.

I had heard things – not so great things – about JKR and her team, and how they’re pretty crazy about copyrights (and $$$). Disney as well. But I never really took it too seriously. People like to exaggerate, right? JKR is a creator; she understands inspiration. Literally shit-tons of things have been inspired by her work, just as she was inspired by others when she created it. But, haha… this is where my opinion changed.

A week after this tweet was sent, I got an email from Etsy saying the Invisibility Cloak necklace was taken down due to copyright claims by Warner Bros and was not to be put back up.

It would help if they responded to emails.

You guys. My very abstract interpretation of a magical object in a book series, a necklace which sat amongst other more literal Harry Potter listings, was totally ripping off the franchise.

Now, I understand the basics of copyright and ownership, intellectual property and the like. I would never intentionally rip off someone else’s work, and I fully support and respect creators in that regard. But this felt so ridiculous. It felt petty, in a way? And I didn’t understand, especially when it seemed as if they’d only targeted it because of the tweet. They didn’t even take the time to look at the rest of my shop and see all the other Harry Potter themed items. It felt like I’d said, “Hey, JKR, what do you think of my work?!” and she’d responded with, “That’s mine. Goodbye.” Except with less words and through a legal team.

Etsy gave me the option to email Warner Bros. I’ll be honest, initially I was really hurt, so I didn’t email them right away. I wanted to do my best to figure out how to fix the situation and not make it worse by getting all emotional because I’d only had my shop for a week and felt like it was already doomed. When I did email them, I politely asked what I needed to change and expressed my apologies for being mistaken in thinking what I was doing was fine. It was very much a tail-between-the-legs email that Starla From The Past, who had serious pride issues, would have scoffed at.

They didn’t reply, so I did my own research in the meantime and found that, essentially, it’s expected that creators who have made products inspired by specific fandoms should not use tags or titles specific to that fandom unless they have license to do so. You can use tags and titles that hint at what it’s supposed to represent, like a generic cereal meant to be similar to Cap’n Crunch. A notebook featuring Hermione Granger, for example, cannot depict a Hogwarts crest or her name, but a notebook featuring a bushy haired girl in a witch hat and a school uniform can be titled Brightest Witch Notebook. Something like that. Maybe they’d still get you for using “Brightest Witch.” I really don’t know.

After another week of silence on their end, I decided this wasn’t even worth it. My shop was meant to be fun, and a place where I can try to make myself feel useful after the year I’d been through, so – pardon me, but – fuck them. I sent another email to Warner Bros, and this time I wasn’t as nice. I mentioned that, number one, instead of shutting down an item completely, they could have sent a warning or some sort of message to indicate it wasn’t appropriate. Number two, they should shift their focus to shops under the “Harry Potter” search on Etsy that are making thousands of sales off of images, fonts, and characters literally ripped from the books or movies before targeting a very new and small shop. Number three, I don’t think JKR owns exclusive rights to the term “invisibility cloak” anyway. And I probably added more sarcasm to finish off with a flourish. As respectfully as possible.

Having said what I felt I needed to, I removed all associations with Harry Potter from my shop and started fresh. To this date, I still haven’t heard from Warner Bros and the necklace still sits deactivated in my shop. The Invisibility Cloak necklace has moved to my new site and is now called Multicolored Hematite Arrow Bib Statement Necklace, which, yes, is utterly boring, but I find now that it’s worth it to represent myself and not what I thought something else was.

All in all, I’m thankful that I learned this lesson early on from a creator/business perspective, but as a fan it still gets to me sometimes. The one thing that really changed throughout this process is that when I see Harry Potter merchandise now, I keep walking. I think that’s what disappoints me the most. The magic is gone.

What do you think? Should Warner Bros have a system of notifying creators prior to shutting them down? Was I being dramatic? LOL, probably. Feel free to share your honest opinions if you’d like.

Thank you for reading <3

New Year, New Content!

Hi, everyone! Welcome to 2019, and to my first blog post of the new year. I’m thrilled to jump into all the wonderful things I want to talk about and do and play, but for this first post I thought I would share with you a little piece of what 2018 brought into my life.

I spent a huge amount of 2018 not doing too well. I was ill and suffering from major depression, so my bed and I had a lot of quality time together. I had to quit a job I had once been extremely good at due to my health, then tried to work a much simpler job and unfortunately got laid off for missing too many days – once again, due to my health. It was good times, as you can imagine.

But the last few months of the year were some of the best, and because of these and tons of support I received from friends and loved ones, I was able to pull myself out of my hole and finish the year stronger than I had been. Overall this made 2018 a wonderful year for me.

The biggest change for me in 2018 was in the beginning of October, when I launched a new handcrafted jewelry and creative business called Intricate Disarray. It’s been such an exciting adventure so far – sometimes scary, of course – and I’ve learned and grown a ton as an entrepreneur since I began.

I’ve set up a workspace where I can create and think and write and work, and I sit here every day, happily working away on many projects. I can’t wait to see where it goes and what I’m able to accomplish with it.

Intricate Disarray

Being my own boss has given me the control and purpose I needed in my life, because there’s nothing worse than needing to work to survive and not being able to because of the demands and expectations of someone else. It has taken the edge off of the hopelessness that comes along with chronic illness, and I’m truly thankful to be able to do this.

Plus, working my own hours gives me the opportunity to write here and interact with all of you. Bonus!

I would love to hear about your 2018, good or bad, if you’d like to share. Did you try anything new, go somewhere exciting, or find something that made you happy? I truly hope that whatever 2018 did to you, you have entered 2019 with a happy heart and a positive outlook. One of the biggest lessons I learned this past year is that no matter the situation, there’s always hope. You just have to fight through. And I hope to pass this message along to anyone who needs it.

Thank you for reading, and see you next time! <3

2019 Plans

Hi, everyone. Merry Christmas to all who celebrate, and happy Tuesday to all. (I wrote this yesterday and had issues with posting so happy Wednesday to all now!)

It goes without saying that it’s been an extremely long time since I updated this blog. I could go over the multitude of reasons why… or I could just talk about what I would like to do going forward. I think I’d rather do the latter, mostly because like… that would be a lot ok, haha.

I don’t know how many people still follow The Creeper Legacy, or Sims stories at all (I hope it’s still a great and thriving community!). I’m very much out of the loop at this point, but if you’re here reading this right now I want to thank you for lending your support through all of these years. I still love playing Sims games and games in general and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed sharing this time with you, as sporadic as I’ve been with updates.

Starting in January 2019 I want to update this blog more regularly, but I want to do more with it. I want to expand… all things. I want this blog to be a place to share not only the love of The Sims 3, but the whole Sims franchise, other video games, as well as share personal stories and thoughts with all of you. I want it to be a place of fun and honesty, laughs and real talk, nerdiness and freedom.

I know this isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and I know changing types of content can be annoying, so I want to warn you all beforehand. If you don’t like this sort of content – the kind where you never really know what will be posted next, with Sims series and one shot posts mixed together – I completely understand and will take no offense if you decide to unfollow. You came for Sims 3 things, after all. If you enjoy various video game content and random anecdotes dotted with fictional storytelling, then feel free to stick around.

I hope you join me for the happy and exciting things I have planned, but if you’d rather not, I leave you with a heartfelt goodbye and a sincere thank you for all of your support <3 I really hope you’re all doing amazingly and I can’t wait to catch up with you all.

Take care, and see you again soon!

News, Updates, Stuff, and Things

Hi! Just a quick update to say that I’ve done some tweaking to the site. Not a lot of noticeable stuff, but it was brought to my attention that the images on the Creeper Downloads page were broken, so I replaced those with simple text until I can get new images. Feel free to download some Creepers and finish my legacy for me! Haha.

Going through those links made me miss them so much :( I’m hoping to get my new computer in the next month or so, so we’ll see. It appears I may have accidentally lost Jermajesty, though… THE GENERATION 8 (or 7?) HEIR. So, I will have to do some searching for him and/or figure out a Plan B. This poor legacy has been through so much, but I’m determined to finish it. Fingers crossed!

Otherwise, I hope you’re at least somewhat enjoying my adventures in TS2. It’s been nice to have that game to play and get back in the swing of writing updates again.

I hope you’re all doing well! I’ve been lurking on some of your stories and I’m enjoying seeing pretty TS3 images again. You’re all so brilliant. Thank you for sticking around!

<3

A Very Non-Sims Update

Three posts in a year? Wow, I’m on a roll.

In case you couldn’t tell by the title, this post has nothing to do with the sims and more to do with my real life (I know, it’s really weird). There’s also a shameless dash of self-promotion, so if this sort of update isn’t your cup of tea, I apologize, but I hope you join me another time!

So, in November of last year, one of my best friends (and fellow simmer), andiewinslife, came to me like, “Yo, Starla. There’s this thing you should do, ok?” and I said, “Sure, ok.” So I did it. The result is this:

Fifty Shades of You!

This is a book that I wrote. It is a Fifty Shades of Grey parody that is gender-swapped and available for personalization! Exciting! If you click on it, it will take you to the website where it’s featured (amongst many other, probably much better books, some written by andiewinslife as well). You can create a free personalized preview and it’s fun for the whole family! …Except, um, it’s smutty, so maybe not the WHOLE family.

Anyway, I’m not trying to be completely like LOOK WHAT I DID OK BUY IT, but I did want to share this with you, mostly because you all have been so supportive over the years and I feel like telling you these things about my life (and I want to hear things about yours, too, ALRIGHT? I know I said, like, “This is a book that I wrote,” but it was so much more than that, and not at all simple for me. I learned so much in the process, not only about the writing/editing process, but about myself. I mean, I’d never written anything this big before. I’d never finished NaNo. I’d never even put more than maybe 5,000 words together on one project. Hell, I can’t even finish a ten generation sims legacy in less than, what has it been, a decade?

This was a little over 45,000 words with a pretty demanding deadline so I pretty much wrote it in a month. So… idk, I’m kind of proud of myself. I mean, it’s no Harry Potter by FAR, never, and it’s not like I’m going to be rich and famous and go on a book tour or anything, but it’s a thing I did that I never imagined I was capable of doing. It just goes to show that we are ALL capable of whatever the hell we want to do. GOT IT? Now go follow your dreams!

ILU all, sims update soon! <3

So Much to Say

Hey, friends! Where’ve you been? I’ve been waiting here, like, this whole time. Seriously, I haven’t disappeared at all. Never.

Okay, no, but really. You know when you think life is going in a certain direction and then it’s like, “Just kidding! Here, dodge this sledgehammer and typhoon while balancing these flaming balls on your head — and watch out for all these sharks and wasps, lol!” and you’re like “wtf life, I thought we were bros”? Well, this happened to me. Again. Shortly after I made my last post that was all, “Oh, hey, I’m gonna be around again!” life reminded me that, much like the sims we torture, I only think I have total control over my destiny.

Anyway, here I am with yet another post explaining where I’ve been. I’m sorry. I don’t have a computer to play on anymore. I don’t even have a real computer, in a gaming sense. In fact, this is what I’m using:

This 11-inch pink beauty (which I’ve named Umbridge) is all that I have at the moment. It’s great for what it is, but it’s not built for much more than the basics. I have not given up on the Creepers in any way, but they’re an impossibility for me until I get a new new computer (and I will be doing that asap).

What I HAVE discovered (and to my sheer delight because omg life is hard and I need it) is that I can play is TS2 on it, so I’ve been playing that to satisfy my simming needs. And now I’m going to tell you a very long story. There are pictures. Are you ready?

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