today we have a special thing in our RPG News, we speak of a new friend of us, Kljindra Star-Sworn, and her endeavors. She had the idea to create a blog about a very special niche of interest, to write and read RPG stories. Not so original you say? Well it is, because the stories are written by players, about their own characters, in real-time, “in the sense that writers create chapters immediately after playing a character, and all characters are on-going until death of said character“;, to use the words of Kljindra herself. It is not important if the platform (the origin) of the stories are tabletop RPGs, or computer/console games, or other sources of Role-Playing, the important thing is The Story! [And you want to know something about this “death” thing, well, keep reading ]
The blog is named “Scrolls Abound!“; and we hope you’ll like it as much as we do. But let’s start with our usual small interview with the author Kljindra herself.
Hello Kljindra! Who are you? Do you care to tell us something about yourself? How did you become part of the RPG world? Feel free to tell us what you wish, we are interested in everything, what and how long are your experiences, your favorite game and so on…
I started gaming with the Nintendo 64 and fell in love with Goldeneye and Perfect Dark. Once Halo came out on the Xbox I was hooked for life, and preferred games with great graphics, an immersive experience and first person POV. When I discovered Elder Scrolls: Oblivion and Mass Effect, I realized I also loved discovering and exploring open, exciting worlds. Creating my character was more important to me than grinding through levels. I also take the choices presented in games very seriously; I try very hard to make a decision based on how my character would decide in real life. All of that fit right in with RPGs, and now it is very hard for me to play a game that doesn’t allow for great character customization and an open world. Right now I’m playing Elder Scrolls Online pretty much exclusively, as my time available to game is less than I would like. I don’t have any experience in tabletop gaming except for Catan and Battlestar Galactica, but I’ll be leaning Dungeons and Dragons this month – I’m so excited for it!
Outside of gaming, I’m half of the team behind a greeting card company that features hand-drawn cards based on the latest fashion trends. I do the illustrations for the cards, as well as a bit of freelance writing here and there. I used to be in the fashion industry, but quickly realized that wasn’t where I wanted to be – although I still take hours to create the perfect character outfit!
How did you have the idea to create your own blog Scroll Abound? Since we are, mostly, tabletop RPG-oriented ourselves, can you tell us how great is the importance of RPGs in the stories you publish?
I was playing ESO one day and realized I wanted to start a whole bunch of characters besides my main character, just to see if the experience would be different. I like making choices based on how a specific character would react in a certain situation, and wanted to see how it played out with different characters. On top of that, I wanted to share how it turned out in an entertaining way, and thought I might not be the only one who liked sharing their characters’ exploits. I really like to write, so it all sort of fit together. WordPress makes it so easy – and free – to start a website, so I figured why not just do it? The ultimate vision for Scrolls Abound! is to make it the RPG version of Fanfiction.net – people can browse hundreds of stories in all sorts of genres, and authors have a platform to showcase both their characters and writing skills.
RPGs are the website. Each story features a character from a RPG. None of the stories are completely made up in the mind – they’re based on actual events that take place in the game, whether on a screen or on a table. That way there is an element of chance, or Fate, to each story. The reader has no idea what might happen next, because neither does the author.
The stories in your blog all revolve around a concept: permadeath. Could you explain better what it means and why it is so important for you?
I’ve read a great deal about how to “spice up” RPGs like Elder Scrolls when you’re playing a character, and one way is to start over when your character dies. They called this Permadeath (short for “permanent death”). When your character dies in-game you cannot continue with that character. It makes it more realistic (and depressingly obvious how short a time I would actually last in a game if it were real!) and heightens the experience, because you’re literally fighting for your character’s life. You make much more realistic decisions when it comes to running into a fight or fleeing, upgrading armor, etc. For Scrolls Abound!, I wanted to use that because it makes the stories much more thrilling and engaging. The reader doesn’t know if this is the last chapter of a beloved character. It adds a depth and a new element to the stories that would be missing if characters could never die.
Do you want to tell us something, in brief, about the stories a prospect reader would find in your blog?
Anything! So long as it takes place in a world where scrolls are the primary means of communication (versus a data pad or other futuristic item), then any story and character may be there. For example, we currently have a feisty Khajiit named Dar’Raksadarg making his way from one end of Skyrim to the other in search of his cousin with the intent to defeat him in combat before going on to become the Dragonborn (written by the fabulous Mod Maidens). Another young lady, Vipsania, has escaped an abusive mother and pursues a career in thievery. And of course, we now have your wonderful contributions about the Teifling girl Anakis, from the talented Mishkamist!
Our newest character, the Dark Elf Tirvril, is busy reporting back on the situation in High Rock and investigating a Daedric Prince – his next few chapters aren’t published yet, but I can tell you he stumbles upon a group of Bloodthorn Assassins inside
Well now you know a bit more about Kjindra and you can find even more about her interesting blog philosophy here
Scrolls Abound! has actually four Series now, that is “ongoing journals with new chapters each week. Every journal is titled by its Author – simply click on an Author below to begin reading of his or her exploits.” Two of the stories are written by Kljindra herself, driven by her passion for the MMORPG “Elder Scrolls Online”: one is about Vipsania the thief and the other about the dark elf sorcerer Tirvril, we let you discover them by yourselves. The third, Dar’Raksadarg, is written by Mod Maidens instead. The fourth, well, the fourth stems from one of our dearest friends!
We realized one of our stories would fit Kljindra’s blog, specifically our Tyranny of Dragons campaign, as seen by the eyes of Anankis Miri, tiefling warlock of Greenest, in Forgotten Realms, D&D 5th Edition. The author is our friend Giulia, which you know with the pen name of Mishkamist: many hundreds of people appreciated already her writing skills in our blog and we hope that many more will read her in Kljindra’s blog “Scrolls Abound!” We like to use different approaches in our stories: in some campaigns, the author writes the POVs of different characters, but here there is but a single one, Anankis Miri. Many people like to have a single “teller of tales” for a good story: if you are such a person, Scrolls Abound! is the blog for you. We wish the best of luck to Kljindra Star-Sworn, hoping that you read the stories of her blog!