The Reason

When I was a kid, I wanted nothing more than to write novels for a living. And I wrote some, it’s true. But throughout the years, people around me would always comment about how it would make me rich and famous (or not). As I went along, I came to feel as if that was the purpose, even if I just wanted to do it for myself.

Much the same thing happened when I decided to try creating video games. It all took time and never really paid back in money. Eventually, I got to the point where I was just trying every creative hobby I could find and never really completing anything. I knew it had to stop – especially when I found out I was about to become a father.

Quitting it all to focus on preparing for parenthood worked for a bit. But my brain grew restless, and I picked up on something else entirely: tabletop roleplaying games.

I tried running Dungeons and Dragons on a fairly serious forum first, but I had no idea what I was doing and the players jumped in and out a lot. Next were a few traditional sessions of Fate Core with a friend of mine, with both of us playing characters and sharing the storytelling. That actually went pretty well overall, although trying to add in my wife turned out less successful.

We haven’t played that in a while, though, so to avoid planning obsessively I play by myself sometimes. It’s a topic for another post, but I’ve tried a few kinds of stories with that method.

The thing is, I don’t have to finish anything in this hobby. If I did, players would wonder why they showed up at all. Creating things and sharing them with others is the exact same thing here, and I always know exactly who my audience is. Plus, it’s extremely unlikely that I’d try to make money from this hobby. All that adds up to no pressure at all – just fun.

Believe me when I say that the result is a lot of stuff pouring from my head. Let’s explore it together, fellow adventurers.


Author: Phil N. Schipper

22-year-old creative writing student at Western Michigan University. After self-publishing my first book in April of 2013, I turned to game design. Also contributing at OpRainfall.

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