Lots of people make this statement to appear glib. I wish that were the case in this post. As of this weekend, my dungeon is now shut down and I will no longer be doing business at that location. Thus, I HAVE left the building.
It was certainly an interesting fourteen years. I opened my studio in 2002, flush with cash and ready to do things MY way. I had grown weary of the situation at “the place under the shoe store” and it’s lax renter policy. I wanted to have all the control over the goings on at a studio. Well I certainly got that, and I learned that it isn’t as great as I thought it would be.
I never wanted to have a location that was a revolving door of renters. I wanted a location that was as private as I could make it. As a child I never learned how to share, and I’m still pretty lousy at it as an adult. I only ever entertained a handful of renters here and there. Some situations ended disastrously and tested my ability to trust others in my field, and others helped me regain that trust. Eventually there was something that I could not battle, and that was math.
Yes, math. You can believe in something as much as you want to, but numbers tell the tale. Eventually my studio became more of a burden than a pleasant workplace. We have all heard the stories of small businesses priced out of the San Francisco commercial real estate market. Now you know another one. It is simply no longer cost-effective for me to remain at my space.
Mind you, I am NOT retiring. Far from it. I will be primarily available in Oakland at the beautiful Black Thorn studio. I am in the process of securing an SF location for business travelers who are unable to make their way across the Bay. I will also be continuing my travel schedule and plying my trade wherever I decide to land.
I would like to open another studio some day, but that is a topic I’d rather not entertain at the moment. I want to enjoy my freedom and see what the future holds before setting down roots again. The math needs to be on my side.
I want to thank those who helped to build my studio and those who recently helped to break it down. I couldn’t have done it without all of that slave labor (literally). I also want to publicly thank Mistress Yuki for being the best renter a dungeon proprietor could ever ask for. It has been a pleasure working with you and I wish you well in your future endeavors.
Thanks folks, it’s been real.