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D&D At Origins – Writing, Roleplaying, And Running

3 Minute Read
Jun 29 2018

We’ve got another batch of Origins Interviews for you today–interviews with Commander Holly “Trash Witch” Conrad, Chris Perkins, James Haeck, and Sly Flourish himself are the featured players of the day.

James Haeck and Mike Shea are both wwriters who’ve worked all over the place in the industry. You might recognize Haeck’s name from Waterdeep: Dragon Heist, and Mike Shea is better known as Sly Flourish around the web. Together the two of them have written some amazing modules, articles, essays, and rules.

In this interview, they sit down to talk with Todd Kenreck about their experiences as writers, how they got their start, the biggest piece of advice for aspiring writers (keep doing it and manage to be lucky, it only takes 10 years to be an overnight success), and their approach to writing adventures. Haeck, for instance, likes to approach it from the villain’s perspective.

Find a villain who either believes they’re right, or is right–and give them a big personality and wants and the rest of the adventure fills itself out from there. Their actions drive the movement of the adventure.

Shea’s approach on the other hand, starts with Fantastic Locations. But has a feq quick and dirty tips for folks who want to write good fantastic locations. First, think of three things that make it fantastic. What can they notice, and more importantly, what can they interact with? Does a ruined temple have a half-hidden statue of a god that is waiting to be animated by an Eidolon? Are there floating islands? Have you maybe thought about floating islands?

Second, make your location either really really big, or really really ancient–both ideally if/when you can get away with it.

But enough about writing–if you’re looking for advice about roleplaying, and running the game, look no further than Chris Perkins (GM to the stars) and Commander Holly Conrad who is the Trash Witch we so richly deserve.


They have a lot of perspectives to offer on roleplaying in particular. Strix is one of the more…iconic streaming characters out there. And it’s easy to see why. You look for a distillation of what makes the character work, boiling down a couple of different ideas until you have something really cool and solid to work with.

Finally to talk about running an amazing game, Satine Phoenix and Ruty Rutenberg out of Maze Arcana are here to talk Streaming, Running, and Gamemastering.

All of that concludes the coverage from Origins 2018–now it’s time to get your games ready and gear up for the next big event. As always you can find these fine folks streaming throughout the week over at the Dungeons and Dragons Twitch Stream, where you can also find more news, design/writing insights, and lore.

Happy Adventuring!



  • D&D: Dice, Camera, Action with Chris Perkins