Session Guide - Running Your Own Sessions

The Session Guide is the person who announces and runs the brainstorming session. Their goal is to guide people through the adventure creation process, keep the conversation on track, and do their best to make sure that we will be able to create a complete story within a reasonable amount of time (1-3 hours).

Anyone who has participated in a few sessions and gained some experience with the process is welcome to take initiative, announce, and run their own sessions.

Before The Session Begins

Make a session announcement

Go to #session-announcements and make a post like this:

Hey, @everyone! Who’s free to do some brainstorming at [time and date]?
We will try to make a short, lighthearted, low-combat, system-agnostic, fantasy one-shot adventure.

We will aim for a 2-3 hour session, give or take. I’m looking for 2-3 people.
If you can join us - leave a message in this chat.

It’s best to limit the group size to 2-4 people. That way everyone has enough time to speak and contribute, things stay more manageable, and the process moves forward faster.

Create a copy of the brainstorming template

Open the template and click File > Make a Copy.

Change the folder from “Resources and Templates” to “Brainstorming Sessions Archive”. Don’t forget to click Share and change “Anyone with the link” to “Editor”.

Before the session, post a reminder

10 minutes before the session begins, make a post in #writers-room:

[@-mention people who signed up]
We begin in 10 minutes.

This is the google doc we’ll be filling in with ideas, open it before we begin:
[link to the copy of the brainstorming template]
In the google doc go to Tools > Preferences, and uncheck “Automatically Detect Lists”, otherwise google docs autoformatting will be really annoying.

If you haven’t read the guidelines yet - please check them out:
https://rpgadventures.io/brainstorming-guidelines

I also recommend to open a note-taking app, can be convenient. And you can open the writing prompts generator (https://rpgadventures.io/prompts), if you feel like it’ll be useful to you.

Start Of The Session

  • Quick introductions, everyone says a bit about themselves.
  • Make sure everyone has the google doc open.
  • Before we begin, here’s a quick overview of the process. Briefly explain the steps we’re about to go through to create the complete adventure.
  • A short summary of brainstorming guidelines/tips. Our goal is to create a system-agnostic, low-combat, one-shot, fantasy adventure. Please avoid discussing mechanics until the end of the session, try to “Yes And” people’s ideas, try to keep the discussion on track, try to contribute at least one idea to every step of the writing process, if you’re feeling stuck - use an idea from a book/game/movie you like, try to build on top of ideas suggested by others, recombine existing ideas in interesting ways.
  • Any questions?

During The Session

  • Guide people through the brainstorming template step by step.
  • Try to keep the conversation on track, try to make sure that none of the steps take too long.
  • If people get stuck or can’t pick an idea - call for a vote, roll the dice to pick a random one (!r 1d10 in chat), or just make the decision yourself and move on.
  • If nobody has any ideas - go with the simple/obvious one. Use writing prompts tool if necessary.

End Of The Session

Remind people:

  • Dont forget to add your name and discord handle to the list of authors.
  • If we like what we’ve made, we can clean up the draft of our adventure and share it with others. I will create the google doc and we’ll talk in #work-in-progress to discuss the questions that come up during the writing process.
  • If you know good people who would enjoy this sort of thing, invite them to our server.
  • After participating in a few sessions and getting a hang of the process, you’re encouraged to announce and run your own sessions.

After The Session

  • Make the copy of the adventure template, summarize all the brainstormed ideas in it. Share it in #work-in-progress, @-mention people who participated in brainstorming, ask for their feedback and ideas.
  • As you write the draft, make the list of open questions you’re not sure how to answer, ask them in #work-in-progress, so that other people can help you out.
  • After the draft is done, playtest the adventure.
  • If everyone is cool with it, it would be nice to publish the adventure on our website and share it on reddit to grow the community.
Prompts App
A large collection of prompts that will help you to write or improvise adventures. Adventure ideas, antagonists, settings, challenges - everything you need!
Adventure Writer's Room
We are a group of GMs who meet in the discord voice chat, and challenge ourselves to improvise a one-shot adventure in 2 hours. Our goal is to have fun brainstorming ideas in a chill, lighthearted, no-pressure environment. We’re looking for some friendly and creative people to join us!
Mirage
A rules-light game for people who love storytelling, improvisation, and freeform roleplay. Go on imaginary adventures, play out fun stories in a lighthearted atmosphere with other friendly and creative people. Come play with us!
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