25 March 2011

Roleplaying Games IRL

Hello intrepid readers,
This will be my first post using the delayed publish feature. I thought about asking you all to tell me if it didn't post, but then I realized that was about as useful as asking those absent to raise their hands and be counted.

I've played Dungeons and Dragons for the majority of my life at this point, and I've come to realize how much more grounded in reality I am now than I used to be. Some people may wonder at this since I'm now trying to eke out a living as a writer, instead of pursuing mechanical engineering.
Allow me to explain, I used to want to live as a D&D Hero. You might be thinking, "Well, Thomas, doesn't everyone want to be a hero?" or "What's wrong with that?" For those of you with these thoughts consider this:

EVERY day of a Hero's life is enforced TORTURE.

(Notice dramatic spacing) That's right, folks! Every single day of an RPG Hero's life is another day in Hell. Get a limb hacked off? Cure Light Wounds and get back in there, champ!
Rotting while still alive? Cure Disease, then keep fighting!
Did you finally die and earn eternal rest? WRONG! Raise Dead will rip you from the embrace of your god and put you back on this world where monsters and evil outnumbers decent folks 400 to 1.
I mean, if you think about it, healers are like Afterlife-Nazis, "No eternal rest for you!"

All this is not to say that one shouldn't play Role Playing Games, because of course they are massively enjoyable, but one shouldn't want to live in one of these worlds. Unless, one is hugely masochistic, because with cure light wounds the pain can go on forever.

18 March 2011

Lessons to learn from the Upcoming Movie "Hop"

If you all haven't seen the trailer yet for the movie Hop, you can watch it here. From this trailer we learn from whence jelly beans really come: Easter bunny poop. There are three lessons we can learn from this about jelly bean companies.

Lesson 1: Off-brand jelly bean companies either a) hire people to walk around collecting easter bunny poop or b) (more likely) kidnapped a few of - no doubt - large number of easter bunny progeny and force feed their ill-gotten rabbits until they poop enough jelly beans to fill dime store plastic eggs for pennies on the dollar compared to name brand companies.

Lesson 2: Jelly Belly is a questionable company that either uses animal husbandry to force mutations into the Easter Bunny genes, OR Jelly Belly subjects their easter bunny babies to injections of different chemicals to make the poop taste like mocha.

Lesson 3: This you should already know. Bot's Every Flavor Bean Co. is the devil. How else can you explain mixing regular rabbit poop with easter bunny poop? I mean come on.

03 March 2011

Drink in, writing out

Occasionally, a writer must take a break from rewriting in order to maintain sanity. I find myself in such a predicament now. I've been editing and rewriting my first novel "Wizard Storm" for several months now, and frankly, rewriting, while rewarding, tends to numb the mind after a while. The characters keep talking and telling one how awfully they have been misportrayed. I'm actually caught in such a predicament with the main character Theldun, whose fall and tentative redemption makes up the main driving force for the story. The problem is, he doesn't fall far enough when he gets redeemed. Of course, I intend to remedy this later by a second, deeper fall from grace, but Theldun insists that he is incredibly bitter and venomous. Theldun's venom isn't shown well enough. So I now face the question, if I show this young wizard's venom more fully, will that cheapen his redemption?
Honestly, the answer is yes. He hasn't been shown enough of the redemptive force to actually choose life over death. To try and address this issue, I took a rather... drastic course of action.
I blinded him.
Theldun, of course, wasn't thrilled with the outcome, but the action scenes are much more interesting with a mostly-blind character's life on the line. Perhaps with Theldun's healing, his eyes will be opened to his inner brokenness?