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  • Writer's pictureChristopher Phillips

Entering the Glade

Updated: Feb 25, 2021

When met with the decision to either play for only an hour or not play at all, the group unanimously chose the former to accommodate one player that had limited availability. I decided to get a large coffee with a shot of espresso (a Red Eye) to kick the session into high gear, which can be dangerous but worth the risk. When my mind is springing along and I have to be the narrator of this story, my mouth can struggle to keep up.

Even abbreviated, this week I had one of the most rewarding experiences I've ever had as a DM. Between last week’s session and this week’s, the players shared some amazing stuff. A game-inspired narrated stew recipe, character images, cats, more cats and the unintentional connections between the improvised Citrus Mafia in the game and an article showing the 1800’s origin of the Sicilian Mafia and the burgeoning lemon industry… ya know, because scurvy.

Before that we collaborated on a sea shanty theme song for the game, incorporating the accomplishments of our heroes into a charming ditty that is now sung throughout the land. When we play there tends to be detailed descriptions of odors they encounter, making our game a true delight to all the senses. This collaborative experience of this campaign increases the enjoyment that I feel and I’m pretty sure is a feeling shared by the players as well.

It’s validating on a personal level, since an ever-present fear for me as a Dungeon Master is losing the interest of the group. As an introverted child with a stutter, I withdrew from conversations whenever I could. This was the beginning of the part of my identity that tells me that nobody wants to hear what I have to say. At least I was able to find refuge in fantasy worlds. It was in these stories I could see the path of success through hardship and made bonds with other misfits.

The laughter, enjoyment and participation that encompasses our sessions and the game-inspired content between sessions has been just what I needed to quiet that voice of doubt and allow this shared creative experience be just what it is - incredibly fun!

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