As a writer, I often stop to think how many people actually read the articles I work so hard on every month.
There have been times when I'll be whacking up tundra tigers in Beaucedine and a passerby will tap me on the shoulder and tell me he's a fan. However, other than these rare instances, I really have no way of knowing if my stories are being read by the masses, or are simply filling up space on a piece of parchment lying around in a pub somewhere. And so I decided to go out and see how many people actually know about (let alone read) the Vana'diel Tribune.
After a long day in Jeuno and an even longer night of compiling the results of the survey I took there, I was able to obtain a clearer picture of what the common adventurer had to say about our monthly publication.
(47 men and women of varying races and nationalities participated in this survey)
Do you regularly read the Vana'diel Tribune?
a. All the time -> 49%
b. Sometimes -> 22%
c. No, but I've heard of it. -> 17%
d. The Vana'diel what? -> 12%
From these numbers we can see that, despite grueling schedules of felling wyrms, aiding damsels, and maintaining overall peace on Vana'diel, over two-thirds of all adventurers take a break to read the Tribune. While I'm ecstatic to see this result, there's still a part of me that thinks the people I surveyed were just too nice to tell me they weren't reading my articles...
Which past Tribune article(s) left an impression on you? (Multiple answers allowed)
a. A story on an event you took place in (are taking place in) -> 68%
b. A story that featured a friend or someone you knew -> 45%
c. A story on a person, event, or place that you knew little about -> 30%
I also received a comment on the above question from an unusually talkative traveler.
"I really liked the one on the history of Summerfest. It was interesting to read all the background information on the traditional celebration. In the future I'd like to read more on Vana'diel's past." (Swani)
As members of the media, we reporters can travel to places that many adventurers cannot. Also, our numerous sources around Vana'diel help us deliver stories quicker and often times more in-depth than most other publications. Helping people relive memories of gallant battles, opening doors to worlds of unknown information, making a lone adventurer's monotone travels more vivid--this is the true power of the Vana'diel Tribune. I can only hope that my articles have such an impact on its readers.
What topics would you like to see featured in the future? (Multiple answers allowed)
a. Newly discovered lands -> 74%
b. Events you have participated (are participating) in -> 39%
c. No preferences -> 21%
As you can see, almost three quarters of the people surveyed find interest in the unknown. For example, the subterranean Moblin city of Movalpolos was recently featured in a special edition of the Tribune. After this article was released, an influx of adventurers was seen setting out for the mysterious underground region to view, first hand, what they had read about days before. One Bastokan warrior summed it up best by saying, "The article was so enthralling that I couldn't stop thinking about those cuddly Moblins. I wasn't satisfied until I could run down there and give them all giant Galka hugs!" (Forge) While I was not quite moved to the point of excessive compulsive embracing, I have to admit, I, too, took a short day trip to Movalpolos after reading my colleague's work.
Another young adventurer I spoke with provided me with the following comments: "I'm still new to this adventuring business, so there are still many people and places I've yet to visit. However, thanks to the Tribune, I'm not as left out when my linkshell members start talking about Tu'Lia or the Tavnazian Archipelago." (Miyukey)
While we may not be preventing beastmen invasions or solving world hunger, if we can make an adventurer's life in Vana'diel a little more exciting, a little more comfortable, maybe even a little more fulfilling, then I would like to believe we are doing our job. And now, with the Tribune's recent renewal, we hope that even more adventurers will stop to pick up a copy. Why not? It's free, and what do you know, you might just find something within its pages that could change your life!
Finally, I asked my husband, Tathuma, which past Tribune article he enjoyed the most. After telling me he liked all of them (I love you too, Tath), he said the one he remembered the most was a story where his picture was used alongside the text. When he said that he did not ever remember giving permission to the Tribune to use his likeness, I reminded him that his permission is not needed as long as I'm the one bringing home the paycheck.