I wanted to say a few words about what I’m going to be adding to this blog starting tommorow.
Before this blog, before World of Warcraft, heck, going back over 18 years ago, I played Dungeons and Dragons, GURPS, Champions, RIFTS/The Hero System, all sorts of table top RPGs.
One day I was brainstorming ideas for a new story hook, and had this vision pop into my head of this utterly cool, ‘M. Night Shyamalan‘ style WTF moment when the player characters would see the end of a storyline that would rock their worldview and change their understanding of what they’d been doing up to that point.
I started with that end result in mind, and started writing storylines, a world setting, and eventually created on paper an entire timeline that incorporated all the events that could lead up to that moment.
I have since, over the years, run various different groups through stories in different eras or locations in the world setting. I’ve even run two different groups through a lot of the first book. Manny was in one group, but not, I think, in the group that actually reached the end of Book 1. Damn, it’s hard to remember.
I stopped doing face to face RPGs, as an adult with a career and family, it had become a big pain in the butt to try and organise and keep momentum.
So a few years back I contacted Manny and we picked up with a play by email take on the game.
I set up a story in the world setting that would fall before the events of the main book storylines, in a different part of the world. Very much like a prequel. Manny created a character, and we took off.
The format chosen was an interactive story. After Manny created a solid character based in part on my custom character rules and background of the world provided, he would tell me what he intended to do, and provide me with electronic dice rolls in advance (which can be done without cheats through a web based application) and I would take his detailed intent and incorporate it into a story. I would write until I ran out of what he had told me, or came to a critical decision point. I would let his detailed personality and background (and the GURPS charcter traits and quirks) drive the minor little decisions.
As time went on, we both settled into it quite well, but I felt it was very draining. I was writing a LOT for each turn.
After a couple months, I got my friend James into the game, as a completely seperate character in an intersecting storyline. Now I had two players playing two characters in different parts of the game world… and Manny was two months ahead in the story, so I had to get James caught up… by writing even more.
Eventually, I petered out. I wasn’t happy with the quality of my writing in the first place, and the mountain of catch up I needed to do was just a wall I finally didn’t want to tackle.
The game went on ‘temporary’ suspension… and we picked up WoW so we could play THAT together. Let someone else be the GM for a while.
I’ve been writing this blog for nearly a year now. Maybe more, I really don’t know. But in the back of my head was always the intention of returning to writing the play by email game.
I think that time has come. I think I’m ready, and the game turns sure as hell ain’t gonna be harder to write than any other of my long blog posts that require research.
So what I’m going to do is have each Friday be another episode of the PBeM game.
Again, the PBeM world is of my creation, the majority of it written over 18 years ago. It is not WoW lore based, although gee, there are Orcs and Humans, oh my. A fantasy world with Orcs and Humans, how original.
So, I wanted to give you a heads up. I’m going to be posting segments of the story each Friday until it gets caught up, and then I’ll be doing new episodes each Friday as new game turns get done.
For those of you that visit this blog specifically for WoW info and Druid info, please avoid Fridays. I’m not looking for your criticism or negative feedback, thank you very much. I’m looking to boot myself back into the demands of creative writing in a PBeM, it is something that I want to do, and I’m looking forward to returning to the world we created together.
And as this is my blog, which my friends already read, and which is hosted on my website… it is the logical place to put it.
I’ll admit I’m curious to see what, if any, reaction I’m going to get. I would hope that I either get a few ‘interestings’, or have it just be completely ignored by everyone except for those of us actively involved in the game.
But I wanted to give you fair warning that, from now until the forseeable future, Fridays will be non-WoW related fantasy storytelling.