D&D General Ed Greenwood's $5K Contract To Sell The Forgotten Realms

D&D historian Ben Riggs has a copy of Ed Greenwood's original Forgotten Realms contract and spends a few words covering it, calling it "The best $5,000 D&D Spent". The setting was sold to TSR for $4,000 in 1987, with another $1,000 for comsulting services.

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Ed Greenwood, the creator of the Realms, said he never regretted the decision to sell the property to TSR, the first company to make D&D. The five grand he made was $4,000 for the Realms itself, and then $1,000 for services as a design consultant. (That’s $13,000 in 2022 dollars).

 
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darjr

I crit!
Folks, you don't need a zine when you have a website you can post articles and such with.

This IS the zine: Articles
Maybe, but it did seem like they said they had some other thing they were going to do. Specifically in reference to the title of Dragon.

They dint label those articles as being Dragon Magazine articles (or dragon + or any other kind of dragon moniker) for instance.
 





Von Ether

Legend
Well, that's because it is potential value, that may or may not be realized. And, for most of the history of humankind, realizing the full potential value requires skills and resource that aren't part of the creation skillset.
I would argue that it could be a taught skill set for creators. While not everyone can have the business savvy and talent of Brandon Sanderson and achieve his level of success, we could stand to have a lot more "mini-Sandersons."

He might be a genius, or lucky, but it's more likely he grew up in a rare household that helped teach him both sets of skills or a passion for both. Regardless, he was supported on both side of the equation being a creative and a creative business.

We need to demystify being creative and artistic. From the artistic side, making money off your efforts should not a bad thing. From the business side, one shouldn't assume that a creative career is a bad choice.
 
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Alzrius

The EN World kitten
I mean, they were all ads. That's what all magazines and zines are.
Magazines rely heavily on ads for a lot of their revenue, certainly, and that results in a lot of pages being devoted to ads, but to call them "all ads" is very much an overstatement. I don't think that Paizo Publishing was formed to put out Dragon and Dungeon magazines because the founders were that excited to advertise for WotC.
 


Parmandur

Book-Friend
Not at all. There were ads, as in all magazines, but there was plenty of content. Honestly, it is a baffling statement.
The content itself was geared to sell stuff, though. That's most magazines, not even being specific. That's a big reason yhe Internet killed magazines so hard, easier forms of marketing became available.
 

Nikosandros

Golden Procrastinator
The content itself was geared to sell stuff, though. That's most magazines, not even being specific. That's a big reason yhe Internet killed magazines so hard, easier forms of marketing became available.
Actually, no. The content was geared towards people who already had the manuals and looked for further material. Dungeon actually could be seen as competing against modules.
 




el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
Another benefit of magazines: if you run out of TP while perusing them on the toilet it is much harder to wipe your butt with a tablet or phone than it is with some torn out ad pages (though that is not exactly comfortable either, but desperate times call for desperate measures!) :poop:
 

Alzrius

The EN World kitten
Well I didn't see it anywhere else in this thread, so I checked an online inflation calculator and Ed's $5000 in 1987 amounts to $13,035.70 in 2022 dollars. Just an FYI.
That was mentioned in the article on Riggs' page:

Ed Greenwood, the creator of the Realms, said he never regretted the decision to sell the property to TSR, the first company to make D&D. The five grand he made was $4,000 for the Realms itself, and then $1,000 for services as a design consultant. (That’s $13,000 in 2022 dollars).
 



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