While most writers of Sim stories can claim to have been a fan of the series since the first game came out, I was not one of them. In all honesty, I’m just a middle-aged woman that has always loved reading, writing, and simulation games, but was very, very late to get into The Sims franchise.
I remember hearing about it long ago, and I had always told myself, Self, no. You don’t need that in your life. Do you see how addicted you are to Harvest Moon? Do you really think you’ll ever get through college if you get The Sims? And I actually listened to myself. Even finished my B.A. in university with a 4.0 GPA and got a full-time job as a librarian. But then one day in the winter of 2014 I was home sick from work with a massive headache from my Chronic Daily Headache disorder, and was watching through all the videos by one of my favorite reviewers, iRawss, available on Channel Awesome. I needed more, so I went to see if he had a YouTube channel, which he did. And he had videos there on… Sims 4?
I became intrigued with the game. I remembered telling myself in the past I’d never get the game because I’d get too addicted to it, but what excuse did I have now that I’m old and out of school and have a job? But I wasn’t a fan of the cost of the newest addition to the franchise, nor the fact that for years down the road new patches and content will continually be released for it; call me old-fashioned, but I prefer “completed” products. I found Sims 3 on Steam for $30, which included the base game and one expansion pack pre-bundled, and I chose Pets, since I couldn’t live without virtual cats. I remember buying it for myself on New Year’s Eve 2014, and I completely missed the turnover to the new year, I was so engrossed with the game.
I really got into the appeal of using Sims 3 for storytelling from YouTube Simmers like TheEnglishSimmer and James Turner of The Sim Supply, but lacking a microphone, video recording software, and the charisma and nerve to ever put myself out there in video format, I knew I’d never be able to do anything like that of my own. Then I found the blog Alice and Kev, which ultimately became my inspiration for Sim Stories: that was when I realized that one could tell a very engaging story using nothing more than screencaps and the written word! Self, I told myself, you can do that! So I started Sim Stories, originally hosted on LiveJournal, and when the majority of my friends would not even take a look because “Well… it’s Sims,” “No, no, no, you don’t understand, you don’t have to play Sims, it’s just reading a story with lots of pictures, you know, like a web comic, kinda!” “But… it’s Sims,” then I realized I needed to go find other Simmers, and joined the EA forums. I had no idea until that point that there was such a huge, supportive community of writers of “SimLit,” but finding that community was probably the best thing that could’ve ever happened to me. I’ve met so many amazing people, made so many new friends, and found so many wonderful new stories to read!
Finding such a library of stories out there inspired me into another little project: I run a link collective for any and all Sim-related story sites on the EA forums, the Stories and Legacies Index. Seeing the index grow has been very rewarding, and I truly hope that more SimLit authors will go submit their story sites as well, so the link collective will continue to become a one-stop place people can go to find Sim stories in an easy, organized manner.
I highly encourage comments and input from my readers! Your voice can have an impact on how things develop in the story. While some events may be set in stone, most are quite flexible, and I’m very interested in knowing what kind of thoughts, reactions, and suggestions my readers may experience with each new installment! I do not screen comments, so please feel free to leave comments any time, and I will always do my best to get back to you in a timely manner!
I can also be reached via e-mail at mastressalita at gmail dot com, or if you use the Sims forums, you can send me a PM from my profile page. My username on the forums is mastressalita and you can tag me in any message using @mastressalita to get my attention!