What’s new with me? D&D.

Hi! Hello! Hail and well met! And happy International Tabletop Day!

A lot has changed since I last posted to this dusty, neglected old blog. (I don’t recommend scrolling too far back; who knows what cobwebs there are from my college years?)

There are a couple of big ones that I could mention – moving twice, going to Thailand again, writing a few more book drafts – but let’s skip to the chase:

I started playing D&D.

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FateFM Mini-Media Kit!

Fate and the Fablemaidens.png

Have a mini-FateFM media kit!

I haven’t had time to put together the full kit yet (though I will), but I have thrown together this social-media option for use on Twitter, Facebook, and the like in the meantime. I fully expect that the full version will be multiple pages, so I figure a mini version is useful to have too.

This only includes the very basic info on the show plus a few reviews and graphics. It’s short, sweet, and easily digestible, though it lacks thoroughness. (Though it needs to be updated already; we’ve hit 30,000 unique downloads since I made this two weeks ago.) It’s like a press kit abridged!

And stay tuned for the full version somewhere (hopefully) not far down the line!

“Table of Understanding” – an EDEN story

“We probably shouldn’t mention we went to a lower level.” Artie Chen ticks the extensive list of things not to mention to his parents on his fingers as he and Jay Dee ride the lift up to the higher levels of the OTC. “Or that we’ve been investigating things. Or that we know anyone involved with anything illegal – or even exciting. And you shouldn’t mention I rode a motorcycle.”

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A Woman, a Gamer, and Proud

If the month of June has reminded me of anything, it’s that I’m seen and I’m heard.

The first week we started our D&D actual-play podcast, I got my hair cut for our Fate and the Fablemaidens photoshoot (which was done by the amazing Carsen Heater and is featured above). Becca sat with me while the stylist cut my hair, and we told her how we had just launched this show and were so excited for the local convention – and really everything ahead of us.

As fate would have it, she played D&D too – which only sparked more conversation.

A few months later, I went back to the same salon. The moment I walked in, the stylist looked up and said, “You’re the one with the podcast!”

I blinked. “Yes, that’s me.” To be honest, I was a bit surprised that she remembered.

“It’s been going really well,” she continued. “I listen to every episode! I’ve even gotten back into D&D because of it. But I play with a group of all guys, so it’s so nice to hear a podcast where a group of women play.”

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“Dancing Lights” – an actual-play short story

Two weeks after seeing Infinity War and I’m still not over it.

Don’t worry if you haven’t seen it; there won’t be any spoilers in this post. In fact the only reason I really bring it up is because my campaign D&D character for the past ten months has been Gameia, a tiefling assassin and the most dangerous woman in the realm, inspired by Gamora. And my best friend, Sam, has played her drow monk sister, Nova, our in-game equivalent of Nebula. In fact, our whole campaign was loosely influenced and inspired by Guardians of the Galaxy. It started as a joke, but quickly started to mean a lot to us. And you need to know all of that for the actual-play short-fiction piece that follows.

We happened upon these characters a bit by accident, which is a story I can share at a later point, but over time we’ve deeply connected with them. They’ve come to be an important part of our lives. Now Gameia prepares to fight her demonic father, Faranos, just like Gamora prepares to face Thanos in the film. But this scene was from far earlier in the campaign, detailing her first reunion with their father… Now just seemed an appropriate time to share it.

TL;DR: If you’ve seen Avengers, I’m sure you’ll get me.

Art of Gameia and Nova in one the rare happier moments of their lives by Rain.
TW: post-trauma and abuse
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When the goblin’s blade first sunk into her shoulder, Gameia’s vision blurred, and she imagined lights dancing into the cavern.

Then the blade withdrew, and the sting brought a sudden clarity.

The lights were real. Dancing lights. Her sister’s. Nova.

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“Stand and Fall” Poem

It’s the strangest thing to feel your heart stop beating

Even just a pause
For just a moment
Before you tilt forward with your toes gripping the edge

But you’re already falling
Or you’ve been falling
And the passage of time is sluggish and disorienting

You don’t know when
You don’t know why
And there’s nothing to catch you as far as you can see

No ground below you
No walls around you
Just air or water or darkness or tears or blood or shadow

You’re falling in
You’re drowning in
You stand there on the edge and you fall in unison

Perpetual suspension
Perpetual motion
And then a beat echoes through the nothing and everything

And though you stand
And though you fall
Life goes on again with the beat of a heart

“Scream” Poem

The fabric of the world
Strains and stretches,
Torn apart at the seams.

The threads snap… snap… snap,
Leaving rents across the sky.
And the world screams.

Snap. Scream. Snap. Scream.

Fire curls around each tear,
Carving out the jagged scars,
Blazing light through darkness.

Flaming bolts strike… strike… strike.
The burning and ripping hurts,
And the pain worsens the mess.

Strike. Scream. Strike. Scream.

Stars fall loosed from the night,
A deluge of broken diamonds
Cried in countless cold droplets.

The wind heaves a sob… sob… sob
The tears flow to floods –
A storm the world cannot forget.

Sob. Scream. Sob. Scream.

Snap. Strike. Sob.

Scream.