I'm also a GAMES-related recruit–a good few years after writing for the magazine and playtesting games in the offices on Tuesday nights, I joined up, but couldn't make any sense out of the Enigma, and so let my subscription lapse. I went to Montreal, though, and had a fine old time. At the ChicagoCon, I could stay away no further, and my fiancee and I both rejoined. And so:
Manx and G,Ames and 317537 (this last of whom I think is no longer a member) were editors at the magazine. Chainsaw, Jo The, and myself were contributors. (This is all before the mag moved from NYC to Pennsylvania; I still contribute to the mag, but less frequently.) The others were assorted Friends of Games, who could be relied upon to show up at the offices on a moment's notice to play Wizard or The Great Dalmuti or whatever was hot at the time.
Whether all these people knew each other from the NPL or knew each other BEFORE the NPL, I don't know. But the whole group's enthusiasm, as a whole, definitely grabbed me and convinced me to join, and then rejoin.
Source: npl-folk email from Storyteller.
First Issue: Jul 1996
J-9 seems a pretty obvious choice for a woman named Janinne, but that nom took its sweet time making itself clear. Janinne needed a nom at all because she was to attend the con in Chicago with her beau, Storyteller, and so she almost wound up as… Listener. Two main problems were, (a) as an antonym for Storyteller, it was lame, and (b) people might take her up on her nom. Other would-be noms, too stupid to mention, were also thought of and discarded. J-9 then presented itself. Besides the obvious, J-9 can be looked upon as a map coordinate, and J-9 certainly likes maps. This dual meaning made J-9 the clear choice.
Source: email from Storyteller.