Jan. 21st, 2019


I owe a short story Thursday. Today is Monday. Wednesday I have plans. Sooo... guess I'm writing a short story tomorrow!

...I have no idea what I'm going to write.

Edit: Yeah, these are probably going to be weekly updates for the next six weeks or so. Ooops.

Edit 2: Okay, I think I have an idea. It's a world building class. I think each story is going to actually be about a setting in the larger world of my novel. That'll work, right? Erm....

Brainstormy Thoughts: Great Falls/Electric City, Nancy's Childhood Home, Seattle/Portland/Something, The Place Where The Unicorn Lives, The PNW, The Old Country, Fargo/Whatever...

Dec. 24th, 2018

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Anyone up for a GPSL? Original characters?

My brain won't shut up.

Here, have some rambling. )

Dec. 15th, 2018

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I saw Aquaman. Reaction under the cut. )

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Hat tip to [info]bojack, but I really liked this article We Are Not Therapists: Gaming and Trauma.

Be kind to one another out there, folks. And be especially kind to yourself.

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Troubleshooting Your Characters
Problems I Haven't Figured Out How To Solve
I'm really late finishing this half of the character troubleshooting essays. I think part of the reason is I was originally going to save this one for last in the series, but it's where my brain is currently, so my essay on bad guys is going to have to come later.

One note about me that my friends have picked up on in gaming with me for almost a year now is I'm pretty ruthless and pragmatic about dropping characters. If a character isn't working, even if I have great love and affection for them, even if they do happen to have lines in a game, I let them go.

This essay is going to be pretty different from some of my previous works in a couple of ways. First, I don't really have a solution to the issues I'm raising. So while I talk about these characters, sound off in the comments if you've experienced anything similar or found a way to work around it on your own. Second, unlike other essays, I'm going to be specific and introspective to recent characters I've written and dropped, rather than broad and generic.

Read more... )

Dec. 12th, 2018


Nah, I'm not going to talk about the Avengers trailer. I just wanted to drop an image that is helpful to me in my writing. Here, have an emotion wheel.

It's a huge fuckin' image. )

Dec. 3rd, 2018


I can't believe I only now found out about LJ Account Juggler.

This is the link to the chrome extension but it worked perfectly on my Opera browser.

omfg how did I live this long without you, bb? 😭

Dec. 1st, 2018

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I figured out what my next essay writing series is going to be once I'm done with the character troubleshooting series.


• Smut; to fade to black or to go for it. The case for and against sex scenes in RP.
• Fight Scenes; what makes a fight scene compelling, avoiding pitfalls.
• Horror; benign violation theory and incorporating horror into RP.

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Troubleshooting Your Character, Part Two
The Character is Just Too Damn Smart
I love dumb characters. Dumb characters are the best. In RP they add in an element of dramatic tension. You know the character shouldn't do something, that there will be consequences, but what kind of fun would that be if they didn't go for it? In fact, isn't just more fun if they make a bad situation worse?

One of my favorite writing teachers Tex Thompson said, "Stories need less fortunately and more oh shit." A dumb character solves that problem nicely.

A smart character can make that really tough.

Follow me to my bud-hole. )

Nov. 30th, 2018

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Troubleshooting Your Character, Part One
Bringing Zombie Characters Back from the Dead
Zombie characters can happen to anyone. I don't mean literally, though I suppose depending on the game they could. No, in this case I'm talking metaphorically. You have a character but they spend their time shambling through the game in search of brains something to do, unable to create connections with other characters.

It's a sad, unfulfilling experience trying to write a character stuck in zombie mode. But never fear! You can bring that character back from the dead. To help me demonstrate, I want to bring up a movie that illustrates my point pretty beautifully. You may have heard of it? It's called Warm Bodies.

CW: There will be zombie gifs in this post. )

Nov. 23rd, 2018

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Why Role Play?
A Basic Primer for RPing on Insane Journal

Humans are storytellers. It's hard wired into us. I think one reason humans love story telling so much is because stories are a form of emotional exercise. I've had friends who use RP as a form of therapy. For others, RP is a way to interact with your favorite fandom or a cool original concept that interests you, and create an ongoing saga that you wouldn't have been able to enjoy otherwise. For me, online RP is what got me into writing and built up my daily writing habit. Even on days I'm not working on a novel or short story, I'm still writing and telling stories.

I'm going to try and explain what role playing on IJ is, how it's different from other forms of RP, and how to do it. Some of you might have gaming friends from tabletop games or MMORPGs that you want to introduce to the hobby. (Or hey, DW! Nice to see you, cuz.) This is for you, and if you have questions, please leave a comment and ask!

Read more... )

Nov. 22nd, 2018

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The Five Dysfunctions of a Game
Becky misuses a business book for RP.
I had other essays about RP I wanted to write, but after being in journal RP games for over ten years now, I see a lot of the same kind of dynamic and social break downs that can make gaming feel toxic. What are mods to do? What are players to do? WELL, to give you an idea I'm going to turn to a book that incorporates two things I absolutely hate: business and touchy feely bullshit.

Except, when implemented correctly, it really isn't. I am a huge cynic but The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni has really won me over. Let me show you how this business book written for corporate and management teams can apply to gaming groups.

Read more... )

Nov. 20th, 2018

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new and improved cast list )

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For some reason my brain just wants to write RP essays. I think because they're kinda zen and calming and get me thinking about writing. I was thinking about writing a series of three four essays on character troubleshooting.

• When characters are too smart and want to "solve" a game or plot.
• How to make a bad guy work as a player character in a game full of heroes.
• How to bring lifeless, uninvolved characters back from the dead.
• Problems I have not figured out how to solve: case studies in dropped characters.

Any other topics you think folks would find helpful and/or interesting? (HA.) Any above topics you would like my hot take on first?

Edit: I got a request from [info]satang to write an intro/primer to IJ journal RP. I have to think about how far back into basics I wanna go, but I know I've thought about how to introduce IJ RP to writing and table top RP friends. HMMMM.

Nov. 19th, 2018

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Where Do You Get Your Ideas?
Coming Up With Plot For Games

I took a novel writing class earlier this year, which was a nerve wracking experience where I turned in 50 pages of mostly garbage to a published author I really admire. She told me while there’s some aspects of my writing that need work, I have a super power for generating ideas. I think a lot of writers get asked about where they get their ideas and when it comes to gaming I have a special talent for driving mods crazy by coming up for plot ideas with game they never asked for. (Haha. Oops.)

So, if you’re struggling, here is how my brain works and how I generate ideas.

Another long rambly essay on RP. )

Nov. 16th, 2018

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IC/OOC Posts: A Primer
Strap yourselves in, it's time for another essay where I ramble about RP.

So the concept of IC/OOC posts were actually pretty new to me. I've seen them used in two game settings. The first, a smaller game that was slower and log driven. The second, a super huge, fast-paced game with occasional events put on by the mods or players.

How they work is this. There's a "who, what, where, when" type header like you commonly see at the start of a log, but instead of the log there's a description of the event. There might be labeled comments for different aspects, times, or areas of the event. Then everyone can pile in with quick comments about what their character is doing and how they're interacting with each other.

What's nice is it give characters the action of the log, but with the inclusiveness of a network or journal post. Besides, it can't always be just two people interacting in a game! Sometimes something should happen and a lot of people are there. IC/OOC posts are how to make it work.

Read more... )

Oct. 30th, 2018

RP Thoughts on Conflict

Another RP Ramble )

Sep. 18th, 2018

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Becky's guide to RP -- in progress rambling )

Sep. 4th, 2018

Enabling Alert:

[info]muchado and I would really like a Howard Stark for Displaced.

Thank you.

Sep. 1st, 2018

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So when I wrote the first draft of the Fairy Ball plot, I wrote that the characters should be in historical attire like Tudor or Regency Era clothing. It just sounded cool at the time and I liked the idea of the characters being put off their game by awkward, restrictive and unfamiliar clothing.

Except now I gotta figure out how I'm dressing all my characters for the ball. Opening it up to a bunch of historical eras instead of sticking to the modern period actually makes this a little harder. Oops.