June 11. That's when I last engaged in actually travelling. And here it is, June 27. That's like, 16 days I've been sitting in the current system, not moving, always cloaked.
I think the locals are wondering what the hell I'm doing...
What have I been doing?
Well, I've been sitting in my pod (in my Loki), remotely building a corp. This has involved promoting, recruiting, interviewing, chatting with current and new members, and writing material that helps the members travel safely and survive in lowsec and nullsec. All from the comfort of my pod out in the depths of nullsec.
I love developing a corp, and this one is especially good for me. I only started recruiting about 3 weeks ago, and then it really started getting busy in corp chat about 2 weeks ago. With all of that - plus other recruitment / promotional activities I just haven't had the time to engage warp drive and move on from this system I'm in.
The corp theme I decided to go with - a pacifist corp where PvP is actually banned, but travel and survival techniques are promoted and taught - has surprised me with its popularity.
I'm an introvert, and I love being an introvert. I learnt a long time ago to stop trying to fit in with the expectations of other people who think that extroverted activities and traits are more desirable than introverted activities and traits.
I've been doing my own thing for many years now in this fashion, avoiding parties and bars and nightclubs and whatever else I'm just not interested in, when I would rather be reading a book or watching a movie or writing, or playing a game.
I was originally into non-combat pursuits in Eve, but I was enocuraged by pretty much everyone that the game was really about PvP. In order to 'fit in', I had to get out there and fight.
So I did, but my heart was never in it. In fleets that I was supposed to fly in, I would choose the cloaked roles as a scout, or I'd choose the covert ops role and be out there by myself, watching what they wanted me to watch and reporting what I saw.
But I got tired of it, and eventualy got into starting my own corps so that I could do what I wanted to do, rather than what others wanted me to do. But I still ended up doing what others wanted, by creating corps that catered to what everyone else was doing.
So I started a corp called Scorpion's Sting. I decided to stick to solo gameplay, doing my own thing, but then I also opened it up for other solo pilots who wanted to PvP. But there weren't many of them around.
And then CCP began making changes to make solo PvP even more difficult. They wanted to encourage fleet engagements. There was obviously extroverts in control, that wanted more and more people to do more and more things with other people instead of by themselves.
Well sure, it was a good business decision too, because there's more extroverts out there that love doing things with other people. And at the end of the day, it's their business. They can do whatever they want with it.
And so solo gameplay was something that became less about PvP and more about mining, manufacturing and trading. For me, that was pretty boring. I'd rather gouge out my own eyes with a rusty spoon than do any of those things.
But over those years I still did my solo thing. And I was good at it too. I was able to evade and avoid the fights I didn't want, so that I could choose the fights I felt I had an excellent chance of winning.
But then I wrote a blog post about learning from the 'school of hard knocks', and I got involved in conversations with a few people who thought I should teach what I knew about nullsec survival. And so OUCH, the Open University of Celestial Hardship was born.
Now, teaching others nullsec survival was something I really wanted to do, and I certainly enjoyed it. OUCH was originally simply about the art of surviving PvP in nullsec, but engaging in PvP was a by-product of the courses. Others got onboard (thankfully!) who were very good at PvP, and so they started getting involved by teaching PvP as well as the nullsec survival courses I'd created. And so OUCH quickly changed to provide 'nullsec survival and PvP training', rather than just 'nullsec survival'.
After spending about two years building it up, I decided to move on. With what I had built and the people I had put into positions of leadership, I was no longer required for OUCH to continue providing the service that I started.
This was perfectly fine by me! I know many others would have liked to have continued riding it for the fame and glory it would bring, but that's not me. I wasn't in it for fame and glory, but for the service it provided to pilots, teaching them how to fight and survive in nullsec.
And so I got on with something I've been meaning to do for years now - travel the galaxy, by myself, in my own time.
So Touring New Eden came into existence, a corp for me and my solo travels around New Eden.
But even though I'm an introvert, I'm still somewhat sociable (mostly via text chat and emails!), so I recently opened the corp up to others. I started looking for other travellers and solo pilots that wanted to AVOID PvP instead of seeking it out.
And the response blew me away! In three weeks of promotions and recruitment, I've now got over 30 new members.
Who knew there were so many out there looking for a corp that would allow them to not only avoid PvP while they travelled and explored and did their own thing, but to also teach them how to survive travelling around lowsec and nullsec?
Not me. I didn't know. I just thought I'd get a couple people here and there, but there's been so many people wanting to join! About ten people a week, consistently. That's a lot of interest!
This pleases me. It pleases me that I'm again providing a 'service' that people are finding of value. The service is providing a 'home' for these solo flyers, introverts like me, as well as guides and instructions on how to travel safely (particularly in nullsec), and how to look for and avoid the hazards out there.
My corp management skills currently allow me to manage a corp of up to 1,100 members. If I can even get 500 members, all doing their own thing, I think that would be fantastic.
Imagine a corp with hundreds of solo, introverted pilots flying around New Eden, doing their own thing, and evading PvP hazards wherever they find them, and feeling comfortable in a corp that accepts them for who they are, and for wanting to do their own thing. That would be awesome!
Well, it'd be awesome for me, and for them. I know it wouldn't be so awesome to those that engage in small-gang PvP and make a living from all the clueless pilots out there that get caught in their gate camps and bubbles.
But I'm ok with that.
So I guess if you're an introvert, and you want to be in a corp that caters to your personality type and preferred activities, then come and talk with me. I've got a new home for you.