Want to write epic content for your favorite tabletop roleplaying games, but don't know where to start? Start here!

Write, produce, and publish your first one-shot tabletop roleplaying adventure in this one-month-long, self-paced workshop! 

July 1-31, 2022

What is a "one-shot adventure"?

By the end of this workshop, you'll have written, produced, and published a 3,500-word adventure for your favorite ttRPG game system.

A one-shot adventure is a tabletop roleplaying game module that can be played and completed in one game session (think 4-6 hours). A one-shot is a great first step toward writing longer ttRPG content. We provide deadlines and structure so that you can stay on scope, finish your project, and build your ttRPG portfolio!
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Chaosium Path

For Call of Cthulhu and RuneQuest adventure writing

D&D 5e Path

For D&D 5th Edition adventures

General Path

For any ttRPG community content program adventure writing

The workshop begins on July 1st, 2022!

Register now to begin your writing adventure

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In this workshop, you'll learn how to...

  • Develop a Writing Process

    Make writing an important part of your life with tools and systems that work for you.

  • Outline and Mindmap

    Organize your narrative and mindmap the potential threads of your story.

  • Craft a Narrative

    Write an engaging narrative, including how to create villains, NPCs, and settings.

  • Edit and Revise

    Edit and revise your work, receive feedback, and implement changes.

  • Playtest

    Playtest your module, gather feedback, and make data-driven improvements.

  • Design and Layout

    Design your document and cover, and prepare your adventure for publishing.

Plus, your registration includes:

Support, encouragement, community, and additional resources

  • 24/7 Chat

    Join the Discord channel to share ideas, receive feedback, and brainstorm with fellow writers.

  • Pep Talks from the Pros

    Get advice, inspiration, tips, and tricks from some of the industry's most prolific creators.

  • Downloadable Templates

    Download templates and resources to aid in your writing and playtesting.

Pick Your Path

Choose from one of three paths to guide your adventure writing

The Chaosium Path - Call of Cthulhu and RuneQuest

Sponsored by Chaosium

The Storytelling Collective partnered with Chaosium to produce our official Chaosium path, featuring lessons about Call of Cthulhu and RuneQuest! Learn from prolific authors Paul Fricker and Nick Brooke to write and publish your own cosmic horror and fantasy adventures.

Instructors: Paul Fricker, Nick Brooke, Nicholas Johnson, Ashley Warren, Christopher Walz, Jessica Marcrum, Yubi Coates

The Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition Path

In partnership with Dungeon Masters Guild

Learn how to write and produce epic D&D 5e adventures! This path is designed for aspiring D&D writers who dream of publishing their adventures to Dungeon Masters Guild and forging a career in D&D writing.

Instructors: Jessica Marcrum, Nicholas Johnson, Jacky Leung, Chris Bissette, Sersa Victory, Jess Ross, Kat Kruger, Cat Elm, Grady Wang, Sebastian Yue, Nimgyu, Beatriz Dias, Yubi Coates, Anthony Joyce, Justice Arman, Alicia Furness, Alison Huang, Bianca Bickford, Christopher Walz, Ashley Warren

The General Path

Want to write for a different game system, or develop your own? This is the path for you! You'll follow the same structure we've outlined for every path, and we'll provide guidance on writing adventures for (almost) any game system for writers who want to publish to platforms like DriveThruRPG or Itch.io.

Instructors: Cat Elm, Chris Bissette, Jessica Marcrum, Kat Kruger, Jess Ross, Nicholas Johnson, Sersa Victory, Jacky Leung, Grady Wang, Sebastian Yue, Nimgyu, Beatriz Dias, Yubi Coates, Justice Arman, Alicia Furness, Alison Huang, Bianca Bickford, Christopher Walz, Ashley Warren

"What's the difference between the paths?"

All of the paths include the same core lessons, but vary in additional lessons unique to the path.

Core lessons for all paths include:

  • Picking your adventure premise
  • Outlining and mindmapping your adventure
  • Creating villains and NPCs
  • Establishing setting and locale
  • Incorporating player choices and avoiding "railroading"
  • Designing, editing, and playtesting your adventure
  • Marketing your adventure and participating in the #ttRPG community
  • ... and more!

In the Chaosium path, additional lessons and resources include:

  • Understanding the community content programs for Miskatonic Repository and Jonstown Compendium
  • Accessing creator resources for Call of Cthulhu and RuneQuest
  • Creating handouts for your adventure
  • ... and other considerations unique to developing for these game systems


In the D&D DMs Guild path, additional lessons and resources include:

  • Understanding and using the D&D Style Guide
  • Publishing tips for DMs Guild
  • Emulating the D&D trade dress in your layout design
  • ... and other considerations unique to developing for D&D community content programs

In the General path, additional lessons and resources include:

  • Exploring themes and motifs
  • Designing your own game system
  • ... and other considerations about writing for your favorite game systems


Here's a sample schedule and workshop overview from the General path

Lesson unlock dates vary slightly in each path

Part 1: Ideation and Organization

The first week of lessons will help you solidify your idea and learn about some basic game and narrative design theory, such as exploring themes and determining the main "conflict" in your adventure. Then, we'll give you some time to write your introduction section (with guidance!) before we move into the next stage.

By the end of this section, you'll have your adventure idea selected and will have created an outline/mindmap to start fleshing out. 

LESSON UNLOCK DATE (UTC TIME)
Lesson 1: Welcome and Getting Started July 1
Lesson 2: Setting a Project Scope July 2
Lesson 3: Exploring Themes and Motifs July 3
Lesson 4: Designing Narrative Obstacles and Challenges July 4
Lesson 5: Setting and Locale July 5
Lesson 6: Villains and BBEGs July 6
Lesson 7: Creating an NPC Quest-Giver July 7
Lesson 8: Outlining and Mindmapping July 8
Lesson 9: Writing an Introduction July 9


Part 2: Crafting an Adventure

This is when you'll write the bulk of your adventure. The lessons during this week continue to delve into some theory that will inform your decisions, and we'll give you lots of time to write each section of your adventure with suggested (but optional!) word count milestones. 

✅ By the end of this section, you'll have your adventure drafted.

LESSON UNLOCK DATE (UTC TIME)
Time to Write: Getting Ready for Part 2 July 9
WORD COUNT MILESTONE: 500 Words July 10
Lesson 10: How to Go from Outline to Draft July 10
Lesson 11: Player Choice in Adventures July 11
WORD COUNT MILESTONE: 500 Words July 12
Lesson 12: Implementing Player Choice and Avoiding Railroading July 12
Lesson 13: The Five Senses Guide to Creating Atmosphere July 13
WORD COUNT MILESTONE: 1000 Words July 14
Lesson 14: Writing a Conclusion July 14
Lesson 15: Assembling Appendices July 15
WORD COUNT MILESTONE: 1500 Words July 15


Part 3: Playtesting, Editing, and Design

We'll share the basics of playtesting and some activities to self-playtest (given the time restraints of the workshop, we know that conducting full playtests can be difficult, although hopefully knowing ahead of time when this lesson opens will give you some time to coordinate one if you'd like!). We'll also share tips for editing, and then start the layout and production steps.

✅ By the end of this section, you'll have your self-edited and self-playtested adventure in layout and ready for polishing in part 4.

LESSON
UNLOCK DATE (UTC TIME)
Time to Polish Up Your Adventure: Getting Ready for Part 3 July 15
Lesson 16: Editing and Proofreading July 16
Lesson 17: Designing for Accessibility - Part 1 July 17
Lesson 18: Designing for Accessibility - Part 2 July 18
Lesson 19: Primer to Playtesting July 19
Lesson 20: Layout on a Budget - Part 1 July 20
Lesson 21: Layout on a Budget - Part 2 July 21
Lesson 22: Cover Design Best Practices July 22
Lesson 23: Conveying Mood through Design July 23


Part 4: Polishing, Marketing, and Publishing

This last part is all about polishing up your adventure and spending this final week making changes to your adventure. We also share some marketing and promotion tips for you to peruse when you need a break from sprucing up your adventure. 

✅ By the end of this section, you'll have a finished adventure and will have completed the workshop! 🎉

LESSON UNLOCK DATE (UTC TIME)
Time to Wrap Up Your Project: Getting Ready for Part 4 July 23
Lesson 24: Marketing 101 July 24
Lesson 25: Being a Good Community Creator July 25
Publishing Day and Course Wrap-Up July 31

Free Path

Not sure if the workshop is right for you?

Sign up for the Free Path to join the Discord server and get access to helpful free content, including select lessons and resources in the workshop!

Apply for a scholarship or nominate a friend

We have a limited number of scholarships available. Apply by June 25th, 2022 to be considered.

Donate a scholarship

100% of donations go directly to providing scholarships to our writers. Donating three or more scholarships (at $39 each) makes you an official Friend of the Storytelling Collective!

FAQ

  • What do you mean by "self-paced"?

    The lessons in this workshop unlock over the course of the month. (Check out the full schedule in the course.) This means that you can log in when you're able to log in and complete the lessons on your own schedule, any time during the month of July!

  • When does this workshop take place, and do I have to be online at a specific time?

    The workshop takes place from July 1st to July 31st, 2022. You do not have to be online at any specific time; we have a global community and scheduled classes are unfeasible. The lessons unlock on UTC time, but you're encouraged to complete them on your own schedule. We provide suggested deadlines to keep you on track.

  • What is the format of the lessons?

    In this course, all lessons are written (like blog posts/articles). Each lesson in the workshop's four units includes activities to guide your learning.

  • Where does this course take place?

    Right here on this website. On July 1st, just simply pop over here to StorytellingCollective.com and log in. The course will be available in your account!

  • Who the heck are you?

    The Storytelling Collective team and instructors are all prolific, passionate ttRPG creators. This is the 9th time we've hosted this course; more than 10,000 writers have taken our workshops since we started in 2018.

Our generous partners make these programs possible

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David Glass Cartography

Curious to know what kinds of adventures are created during the workshop?

More than 10,000 writers from around the world have participated in this workshop. Check out the bundles we've assembled after previous sessions to see what kind of work is produced during the month!

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HTML tutorial HTML tutorial HTML tutorial

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HTML tutorial HTML tutorial HTML tutorial

HTML tutorial HTML tutorial HTML tutorial

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Join the RPG Writer Workshop Discord

Get help and support from our global community of writers! Our alumni agree that the Discord server is one of the most valuable assets of the workshop.
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Here's what RPG Writer Workshop alumni have to say:

Christopher Harding (@Xanethlyon)

RPG Writer Workshop Participant

Joining the RPG Writer Workshop has been the most fulfilling and welcoming experience that I've had in a long time. The connections and friends made, the knowledge gained and the confidence I have has grown. I've gone from being unpublished (and no writing projects), to 2 adventures, 3 supplements, a few collaborative projects, as well as charity bundles in just 7 months. I highly recommend joining the discord and the courses whenever possible. They've proven invaluable for getting my foot in the door and learning how to be a TTRPG writer.

TL Massey (@tlmasseywrites)

RPG Writer Workshop Participant

The RPGWW is not only a fantastic little community, it's also a powerhouse of project management for first-time TTRPG writers. Even if you're an experienced writer or illustrator, the RPGWW framework is a great new way to think about a module from start to finish. Best part about the community? You have baked in real-time access to peers and resources to make your debut into the TTRPG scene. Bonus: You'll still have them when you stick around after you publish module #1. I'm very pleased with how much I've been able to get done since I joined.

Matthew Wulf

RPG Writer Workshop Participant

The Write Your First Adventure workshop gave me the tools, motivation, and communal resources to publish my first TRPG adventure. The importance of having a defined goal every day cannot be overstated. This course will make you a better author and a better game master, guaranteed.

Michael Reid, MikeReidWrites.com

RPG Writer Workshop Participant

The RPG Writer Workshop is the perfect starting point for writers breaking into the tabletop industry. The structure of the course provides a strong foundation for developing each individual's method for writing TTRPG material, while the encouraging instructors and fellow students offer something even more important: community. Crafting my first adventure for the DMs Guild, "False Profits," as part of the July 2020 RPG Writer Workshop was a transformative experience for me as a new independent TTRPG writer. I can't recommend it enough!

Your storytelling adventures await!

Contact Hello@StorytellingCollective.com with questions about our programs