Jenna (anchiale) wrote in roleplayers,

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notes on inspiration

As today's weather is like that of Ray Bradbury's Venus and even the branches of the evergreens hang in wet shreds, I got to thinking about GMing and where the ideas come from for the action of a game.

In my (newly gotten!) experience, non-fiction is the best source of inspiration. I love fantasy and read it probably twice as often as I do non-fiction, but any specific ideas that I have from that source are just that, derivative of the source. In running a game based on existing fantasy, I either have to be concerned with matching the setting as accurately as I can or departing from it to create something original.

Non-fiction (history, economics, politics, anthropology), on the other hand, has limitless space in which to insert fantasy. I can change anything I want because--hey!--it's fantasy, and I can borrow whatever I like without guilt. Non-fiction provides inspiration whereas fiction limits inspiration because the work is already done for me.

No doubt this is a personal preference and reaction, but has anyone else had this same experience?

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