The @Narrative Network Team already have something in the works for opening up Chaucer to a wider user base, so this suggestion may not fit what they already have in mind, but please consider it on its merits.
It might be advantageous to open up Chaucer to newcomers in small increments, by opening it up for a limited time and cutting off new sign ups once a target is reached.
1) Chaucer becomes active again (really not optimal that niches are not being bid on - sends precisely the wrong message to people coming to discover the project)
2) Chaucer activity levels can be precisely controlled between now and Beta launch
3) Access can be throttled down so that the burden on the Team in managing communication with newcomers remains manageable. The Community is, of course, also here to help with that communication
4) Limited access is GREAT publicity. People will start paying close attention, trying to gain entry each time the Team opens access. It will create interest and desire with very little advertising overhead.