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Thanks to D&D and All It’s Taught Us

Written by Paul Rehac - Published on November 28, 2013

Turkey Day is here and it’s getting to be that time of year when we all are reminded to be grateful for everything we’ve got — something I know I do a little less often than I should. Because of that, when I was posed the question “Why are you grateful for Dungeons and Dragons,” (like several other DungeonMastering writers answered last year around this time) I was more than a little stumped. I mean, of course I love to play tabletop games — I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t — but why grateful was never a word that came to mind. I gave the question a lot of time and thought, and I eventually came to the conclusion that I had no idea why I was grateful. Until something completely unrelated to D&D happened.

 

While spending time with a friend I mentioned that I had written something, and I was working on editing it. Of course, her response was “can I read it?” I explained that it was really meant for performance — a spoken word poem — and her response was, “then perform it!” It took a little coaxing, but eventually I did perform it, and I found that as I read I wasn’t getting nervous. I didn’t have stage fright, like I’ve come to expect. That amazed me to no end, and for the rest of the night I was filled with a mixture of pride and curiosity as to where this new-found confidence came from. That’s when it hit me:

Dungeon and Dragons.

I’ve been Dungeon Master in my friend group for several years now, and I’ve run more than five campaigns in that time (not to mention countless one-shots, both themed and not). I’ve run games for friends’ parties, introduction for new players, and more often than sometimes a group of mostly strangers. In all of that I never really thought much about it, but I’ve come to realize that what we do, as Game Masters, takes a lot of courage. We pour our hearts into stories that may or may not take with the players you share them with, often times with no idea how it will go over and usually with at least one person you don’t know very well. Despite that, we perform for our small group of players — and it is a performance — likely with confidence, and we don’t even realize it. For me, that’s carried over to just about every other kind of performance, from spoken word to publishing articles on a blog. Even if I’m not confident in the quality of what I’m putting out all the time, I’m always confident that I am passionate enough that it’s worth giving it a shot.

So I would like to say that I’m grateful for Dungeons and Dragons because it’s given me the confidence to do the things I love, both at and away from the table.

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Written by Paul Rehac

Paul Rehac

Hey! Paul here. I’m a writer and a gamer — have been for almost ten years now! As a dungeonmaster I focus primarily on storytelling and immersion, and do my best to make every game as captivating as possible. As a player I’m all about the character and the roleplay, and I’m more than content to never roll a die.

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