I haven’t much written much about role-playing games lately. That is a shame. There are several overlapping reasons why that is.
- I haven’t played many role-playing games lately. It’s true. There was Fiasco at Fall-loha, about which I do want to write, as well as the non-experience of Shab-al-Hiri Roach, and before that was the first session of a fantasy campaign I joined that hasn’t met since.
- Writing about board games is easier. A lot easier. Not just because I play them more often than role-playing games, so they dominate my headspace and I have play sessions to comment on, but there’s usually something fresh to talk about. With role-playing games, there’s nothing on the market that’s caught my eye, so I have all the same old stuff to talk about, which becomes tedious. I’ve had a number of draft posts going for almost a year now I don’t want to touch because I really don’t care about the topics in question anymore.
- The precipitous decline in my appetite for reading. For whatever reason — I blame the instant gratification of browsing the web and social media — my inclination to sit down and read a book has dropped alarmingly. I didn’t read by the lake at all this summer. My “to read” pile of fiction alone has almost two dozen titles. There are probably three dozen role-playing books I’ve “meant to get to” for years now. This is why Read ‘Em ‘Cause You Got ‘Em has languished so long.
- I’d rather be doing real stuff. Blogging is fun, but it very rarely feels productive in any sense beyond sharing one’s mind. So, tying back to point one, it’s easier to dash off a post about a board game I played that week rather, then go on to something more immediately useful or interesting than making up an NPC, for instance, or generating plot seeds I’ll never get to use.
- Other gaming-related efforts have my attention. Carnage is ramping up, for which I still need to write my Ghostbusters adventure, in addition to helping with all the staff prep work. I’ve also set myself the task of having an improved version of the Green Mountain Gamers site up and running to debut for post-Carnage, first-time visitors.
Writing less is not the solution. I want to keep Held Action going at three posts a week as a personal goal of being productive in a hobby, in a way that role-playing itself isn’t for me right now. I’d like to tell myself I’ll have more time this winter for indoor activities like reading, but I can easily envision frittering away that indoor time tinkering with web sites or even putting to more productive and immediately gratifying, but not role-playing related activities.
The real solution would be to set aside time in my week for role-playing stuff: reading a book, creating a character, something like that. To that end, I have decided to experiment with making Monday evening into RPG Night. Nothing in my personal life ever happens on a Monday, so I’m usually just hanging around, surfing the web. I even created an email reminder set to ding at 8:00 PM, so I don’t forget. This week, I sat down with Fiasco and read. I’ll let you know how it went.