Geeky Inspirations Builds Characters

Hey all, Dani here.

I think one major part of my life that helps to inspire my writing is my involvement in a lot of geeky hobbies. In fact, I always find it amusing when I refer to myself as a geek or a nerd around people of older generations because they act like I’m insulting and degrading myself.

In today’s society, geeks are actually pretty cool, and I so love that. There are so many books and comics/graphic novels that are becoming movies and television shows, and the world of board games and RPGs seems to be getting more and more attention. It’s amazing to see, and to be a part of.

This past weekend I had an amazingly geeky weekend. As soon as I got off work Friday night, I went to a friend’s house, where a few of us participated in another session of Dungeons and Dragons. It was only our second time meeting, but it’s just fun to hang out with fellow geeks and delve into this fantasy world. For this particular game I am playing a Dwarf Cleric, and I am traveling with a Gnome Warlock (who faithfully follows Cthulu) and a Human Monk (who is of a sect of monks that specialize in brewing alcohol). In our first session, if it had not been for my healing ability, we would have definitely had a TPK. This time, the adventure is a longer one so we’ll need one or two more sessions to finish our job.

This Dwarf Cleric of mine is really interesting for me from a character standpoint. She is eternally optimistic and definitely falls into the category of a goody-two-shoes, most of the time. If you threaten her friends or companions then she is quick to defend them. But she is so many things I am not…something that became obvious when my friends commented on how my instinct was to rush in, blackmail, steal, and deal violence, but I had to restrain myself for the purposes of staying in character.

I love that participating in RPGs allows me the chance to try out different characters, different personalities, different backgrounds. And the interaction with other personalities also helps me to think and plot and create even more.

I have another D&D group that hasn’t started yet and I am playing a Half-Elf Druid in that one. Unlike my Cleric, in this other game I already know that my Druid is incredibly neutral in a great many things. She is very protective of her Elf Bard brother, and I also know that she likes to keep secrets. But since we haven’t started playing, all I know about her for the most part is the brief backstory I wrote up, and the random personality traits, bonds, and flaws I rolled up during character creation. I really can’t wait to delve deeper into her as a character and see who she truly is.

Then, on Saturday of my geeky weekend, I traveled to a local park and was able to participate in a LARP group. This group is a part of Amtgard and you choose a name for yourself and then you can take a class, each of which has different limitations on weapons and armor and skills. As it was my first time, I had to come up with a name before the end of the session, and I am currently without a class (aka a peasant). I had a great time, even if I couldn’t feel my feet at all after almost four hours running around in the cold.

When I got home I read over the Amtgard rules a bit and started to pull together some details about the character I’ll play in the LARP group. I can’t completely solidify the character until I settle on weapons choices. I’d really like to try my hand at archery though. Currently I’m leaning towards being an archer or a scout…which in D&D terms would certainly put me in a Ranger class.

Anyway, spending a weekend jumping into many fantasy worlds has helped me to get my creative juices flowing some more, and hopefully that will help me to finish my current writing project so I can jump into writing my next book.

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