Posts Tagged ‘Writing’

Lessons from the Literary Process

I’ve commented a number of times on the insights that can be achieved by looking at behind-the-scenes specials and DVD commentaries. There’s a documentary series that has just started a week or two ago on TVS, a public-service broadcaster here in Australia, called “The Art Of Story and the Narrative Game” and the interest in […]

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Ask The GMs: The Great Handouts Question

GMs sometimes ask more than one question. Where these directly relate to each other, or the context is important to the answers, they are generally lumped together. When they aren’t, which is far less frequent an event, they get split up and answered separately. Which brings me to today’s topic: Writing characters out when players […]

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The Breakdown of Intersecting Prophecies

The recent trip to attend a couple of surprise family functions was the closest thing I’ve had to a holiday in almost 3 years, and only the second in about 5. Anticipating that it would be difficult to get back into the work habits that had built up in that time period, I even made […]

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The Conundrum Of Coincidence

The concept of “coincidence” was a thorny problem for philosophers starting from the ancient Greeks. Plato, in Phaedo, defined “inquiry into nature” as a search for “the causes of each thing; why each thing comes into existence, why it goes out of existence, why it exists”. Aristotle went further, developing a theory of causality, commonly […]

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The Challenge Of Writing Adventures for RPGs

Since I only got back to work on CM late last week, I decided at the last minute that I might need an extra week to finish up the Tavern Generator. So I’ve brought this post forward from it’s originally-scheduled position later in the month. This is yet another of the articles I wrote while […]

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The Backstory Boxes – Directed Creativity

Chatting with a fellow GM on twitter recently, I was reminded of a technique that I use from time to time to generate backstories, that I thought I would share, in somewhat fuller and more developed form than I was able to convey in a handful of 140-character tweets! There are two ways to use […]

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A target of inefficiency: from Dystopian trends to Utopia

Some background Before I can get to the main subject of today’s article, I need to tell a few short real-life stories to set the scene, putting the article into context. The Story Of Canterbury Road When I look out my front window, I am confronted by the somewhat depressing site of one of Sydney’s […]

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Imperfect Imbalance – Personal Injury Law in RPGs

To really get to grips with your RPG world, you have to understand how the invented environment affects the everyday life of the inhabitants. That’s more easily said than done. One technique is to answer a long series of questions, progressing from the simple to the profound, as shown in my first series here at […]

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The Power Of The Question-mark in RPG Plotting

Here in Australia, there has recently been a confrontation between the media and politics within the courts in the form of the Treasurer, Joe Hockey, suing one of our newspapers for defamation over a story which appeared both in print and on their website, and two tweets promoting that story. The story alleged that Hockey […]

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Compound Interruptions: Manipulating Pauses

This entry is part 4 in the series Further thoughts on Pacing

This entry is part 4 in the series Further thoughts on Pacing Sorry for the delay in posting this – my ISP is conducting maintenance of some sort, and my connection kept dropping out, making it hard to upload and format the article in the usual manner. Combinations So far, I’ve been looking at the […]

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Status Interruptus: Types Of Pause

This entry is part 3 in the series Further thoughts on Pacing

This entry is part 3 in the series Further thoughts on PacingIn part one of this series, I demonstrated that a pause or interruption in play can be enormously beneficial, if used correctly. Last week’s article examined before-pause and after-pause content and found that these had to match in order to extract that benefit, and […]

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Anatomy Of An Interruption – Endpoints

This entry is part 2 in the series Further thoughts on Pacing

This entry is part 2 in the series Further thoughts on Pacing Having established in part one of this series that a pause or interruption to play or to the primary plot being deployed within the game can be more than a necessary inconvenience, it can be a tool whose manipulation by a savvy GM […]

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