A couple of weeks back, as I prepared to record Season 10 Episode 20, I wrote some thoughts about where I am as a GM. In that post and the episode that arose from it, I mentioned I had spent some time working on what Kenny Norris calls a “Passion Statement”.
As we approach a long weekend here in the UK, I am hoping to find some spare time to get myself back to the solo table. To prepare, I referred back to this statement. It’s interesting because, apart from one small tweak, it strongly resonated with me all over again.
Here’s the revised version of what I wrote:
Battling for the heart of civilisation, I want to discover characters exploring deeply rendered worlds and facing dangerous challenges. Using detailed and grounded rules, I seek to use random elements, blended genres, and entrancing details to immerse myself in adventure. The story emerges over time, offering opportunities to gear up and toast enemy scum.
I find myself smiling as I write the last line, in which there is definitely a strong sense of my inner teenager desperately wanting to kick out. But putting aside the butt-kicking, much of what excites me in gaming is the stuff I speak about frequently: deep worlds and complex characters.
The wonderful thing about solo roleplaying, of course, is that I am not beholden to the tastes and opinions of any other players. I am not held back by opposition to a particular system of rules, nor am I limited to any one particular fantastic world. In fact, for me, mixing things up is exactly what excites me.
You can find Kenny’s article (free) in his “Collected Archives” on DriveThru, but here’s the basics:
Write down this sentence: ‘Looking back at my roleplaying days I enjoyed…’
Now finish the sentence.
Read what you’ve written and when you come across a word or a phrase that makes you feel something copy it into a list.
Pick a few phrases that evoke the strongest emotions.
Once you’ve selected these phrases use them as a basis to write your Solo Roleplaying Passion Statement.Solo Roleplayer: The Collected Archives, pages 18-19
Kenny’s advice felt cheesy when I first read his blog but, in hindsight, there was value in giving it a go because it’s helping me focus on the things that personally matter the most.