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As a producer, I tend to think of Eldritch Errors as a machine with two modes: burn and coast. When the production is in burn mode during a Book, it costs more to keep Eldritch healthy. When we come into an Interlude, that cost goes down ... but if you coast too long you'll lose too much of your momentum. When Eldritch is in burn mode, I have budget goals for what I want to keep the expenses to each month in addition to GMD Studios' standing team. Budgets can be horribly boring, the mere mechanics of implementing ideas, but they can also be where you find the best "bang for the buck" approaches that make an idea a success.
What follows is intended primarily for other interactive storytellers or those really interested in the mechanics of what makes Eldritch work behind the scenes from a budget perspective as an independent production. It isn't intended as a tutorial or a comprehensive budget model. It is just one producer's notebook about ways to think about how budgets -- of live events, especially -- can become useful tools for both qualitative goal setting and for making small budgets look bigger than they are.