My response to and advice concerning the dilemma you find yourself involved in, which I sympathize with, is thus:
Originally Posted by Allure1
Function OOC, (out of character) converse OOC, if that's how you are comfortable, but utilize well known and accepted RP'er conventions such as ((bracketing your text as OOC)). When people return this, you know they are *more likely* to be a RP'er, and then try an IC comment with them. Do note, however, that these conventions can't be considered universal or enforced or anything, it's just a suggestion based on practices I've seen and maintained across a handful of MMOs.
Honestly, this is deserving of its own topic, and I'm glad you brought it up.
As for the "invisibility" of world RP, I can offer the perspective that roleplay is a trust exercise, and for the same reasons that the "new to RP" player is careful and cautious, most of the RP I involve myself in (and it's a lot) is with cautiously selected partners, usually in party chat, and I know I'm not alone in this practice, which I/we follow in both games we all play in together. We'll regularly throw out the odd /say RP as somewhat of a "fishing exercise", but my advice to anyone trying to break into RP is to seek it out OOC, with focus and courtesy, because it's happening, I can tell you for a fact that it's happening, it just might not be out in public.
Do also note that there is a vast difference between the elitism of exclusion I alluded to in my above post (which would lead to the "you're not good enough" sorts of exclusion... rampant in lore-heavy WoW circles) and the "everyone RPing in party" caution. The people RPing in party are more likely (for the reasons I've known of, anyway) to generally accept a new RP'er, just perhaps not into the plot/story/conversation currently going on in party chat.
Seek it out, it might not land in your lap, but it's out there.
The more I think of it...the more I think I should start a new topic with this angle...
Originally Posted by Omedon
New topic started!