After the years of Tracers reign the Atlantis Magicians were in kinda apathic state. In this situation three candidates showed up when Tracer resigned: Talisin, Stephanie and me. The following note I posted to the Grey Board. Stephanie had little chance, it became a close race between Talisin and me, standing for completely different ways of the guild.
Again and again we read of dissatisfaction on the boards. Again and again we read that this Guild has lost its reputation, that it is this and that not anymore what it once was ... The questions to me are: What does stand behind this constant atmosphere of disorientation and whining? What is it that makes prominent mages become bitter and passive?
Of course there is no single reason.
One reason is a missing opponent that forces us to stick together. While necromancy opposes us by its nature, except Cadderly the Necros are quiet, hardly posing a real threat to us. They do little that we can't replace easily, so many think: Why bother? We even managed to keep the Hutzel priests at bay by diplomacy, so why bother either?
Maybe some of us got a bit careless which indeed is disturbing ... but, to be true, isn't it great we don't have to worry for our lives and for our knowledge every single day? And have a look a the research projects: Isn't it great to see the effort we undertake to besiege the threat of necromancy scientifically instead of succumbing to their way of endless death?
Another reason for dissatisfaction is that many mages from as many different viewpoints want the guild to stand for this or that, for positions they take themselves. To me, the seemingly indifference is no reason for dissatisfaction but a reason to love this guild for its variety. We are people of the mind, many ideas pop up, and we have the courage to try them out, to test them at reality. We don't need a narrow codex to give ourselves an identity, neither individual nor as a Guild.
Another reason might be discovered when we see that it is often the old that complain: Even among us people of the mind there seems to be a tendency towards sticking to the ways of old, not liking the challenge of the new and the change.
Nothing against tradition but we need the flexibility to adapt to change. Xyllomer is changing constantly, the flow of Magic is changing constantly, even allyships and friends and foes change - so we need to change too, personally and as a Guild. This is no call to follow any fashion, of course, but I want to make clear that both has its reason: Tradition and Vision.
Thinking about GM, there's yet another reason for the widely spread dissatisfaction I want to talk about:
Tracers style of leadership can (except on two outstanding occasions that drew calls for impeachment) be described as "wait for developments, pick them up, sum them up, call them your invention". Not a bad strategy for a leader himself cause it makes him popular and saves him from making big mistakes. Not bad too, cause the solutions found are mostly acceptable ones. However, there's one big problem inherent: It is passive style. It is not inventive, not creative. A passive leader, however, instills this kind of passiveness on those he leads.
Tracer started out with a bunch of ideas but the more radical were harshly rejected by the guild. He watched the guild turn to bash me for my ideas as Protector, seeing that you might have a hard time if you're provocative. Over time he became very careful with mentioning new things, too careful probably. He continued managing the Guild, handling most things calmly and quietly, but he stopped to make proposals, he became a fine administrator who lacked imagination and vision. In the last year of his term he tried to play the Power-GM, installing a council that doesn't work because most of its members are absent.
More than a powerful Guildmaster this guild needs inspiration. This guild needs intellectual leadership.
We have all that it takes. We have formidable researchers among the old experienced (e.g. Olivan, Ondoval, Zaphodbo). We have eager researchers among the young (e.g. Glux, Flock, Neferu, Phaedra). We have powerful and courageous battlers to defend ourselves in moments of danger (e.g. Caleb, Stephanie, Talisin, Mandarb). We have politically experienced people (e.g. Tracer, Olivan, Mandarb, Beran). We have excellent teachers (e.g. Elbereth, Olivan, Zaphodbo). And many others, i've just mentioned a few. Not all are to everybodies liking, not even to mine - but that doesn't matter. What matters is that we can combine our forces on whatever prospects or efforts we want.
And we have a candidate for Guild Master that combines all these feats: Creativity and experience. We have a candidate that has made an excellent proposal for a council structure that can be improved by learning from the failure of Tracers prototype.
Many of you have asked me to do it. I will probably have opposition but if that helps to let the guild wake up again that's fine with me.
I candidate for the position of Guild Master.