[Game Mastering Secrets]
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Gamemastering Secrets

2nd ed

Contributors' Bios

Aaron Rosenberg


Aaron Rosenberg was born in New Jersey and raised in New Orleans, and is now in New York. He has been gaming for twenty-two years, running games for twenty, and working in the game industry for eight. In that time, Aaron has designed three games (Asylum, Spookshow, and Chosen), codesigned four more (including the original HKAT!), and done freelance writing for such companies as White Wolf, West End, Last Unicorn, and Pinnacle. Aaron has also written essays on gaming for Pyramid, RPGNet, and Games Unplugged. In his spare time he runs his own game company (Clockworks, online at http://www.clockworksgames.com), does corporate graphics, writes novels, and plays with his two cats.

Sam Chupp


Sam Chupp is a 34 year old dad who lives in the Atlanta area with his family: his partner, Cynthia, her daughter Katie (11), and his two children Rowan (13) and Genevieve (10). Everyone who lives in his house plays RPGs. In 1993 & 94, Sam was a co-designer of the roleplaying games Changeling: The Dreaming and Wraith: the Oblivion for White Wolf Game Studio. He has written many articles on kids & roleplaying for the website About.Com. In Summer, 2000, he ran a special roleplaying camp for children at the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies' family week. He runs an email list for people who want to run roleplaying games for kids called kids-rpg. For more information about kids & RPGs, see his website: http://www.samchupp.com/kids-rpg/.

Hilary Doda


Hilary Doda got her start in the gaming industry at Canadian company Dream Pod 9, and has recently entered the glamorous world of freelancing. She is a passionate gender-equity activist, and has spent a great deal of time and irreplaceable forest resources writing and speaking about the topic in various fora. She grew up in the concrete wilderness of Toronto, escaping to Montreal about five years ago, where she shares living quarters with the feline embodiment of Chaos. She would like to thank her muse and fiance, Richard Morris, for his endless and unwavering support in all her endeavours.

Ann Dupuis


Ann Dupuis has been involved in the game industry since 1990, as writer, editor, cartographer, and publisher. While writing GURPS Old West (her first big roleplaying project), she discovered that American history is actually interesting, a fact that escaped her while in school. Ann is the founder and president of Grey Ghost Press, Inc. Her favorite game systems are Dungeons & Dragons (the Rules Cyclopedia version) and Fudge. She decided to publish Fudge commercially when she realized that it was the perfect game system for the "Animal Companions" gaming sourcebook she's been working on for more than a decade. Alas, other projects keep distracting her from the Animal Companions book, including her own animal companions (two dogs, three cats, and two Arabian horses). Ann lives in Massachusetts with her husband Paul, thousands of books, and hundreds of games. They plan to some day have their very own Hundred Acre Wood.

Lee Gold

Lee Gold has been reading SF since she was in junior high back in the 1950s. She got into science fiction fandom back in 1967, when she was in grad school getting an MA in English Lit. She's also interested in Arthurian and general Celtic folklore, Norse folklore, Japanese folklore and the Japanese language, Judaica, Kipling, Cabell, and reading random articles in the Britannica. She publishes Alarums and Excursions, a monthly RPG APA that began back in 1975 and has won a couple of Origins Awards (and is up for the Hall of Fame). She's also written some professional game products including Lands of Adventure, GURPS Japan, and Vikings (for Iron Crown Enterprises). She also writes filksongs and publishes Xenofilkia, a bimonthly magazine of filk songs. For more information, see http://theStarport.com/xeno/leegold.html.

Matthew Forbeck


Matt Forbeck has been working full-time in the adventure gaming industry for more than a decade, ever since he graduated from the University of Michigan. In that time, he's worked with most of the leading companies in the industry, including Wizards of the Coast, Games Workshop, White Wolf, Pinnacle Entertainment Group, Alderac Entertainment Group, Artbox Entertainment, Image Comics, WildStorm Productions, and many others. He has worked on collectible card games, roleplaying games, miniatures games, boardgames, and even written some short fiction and a comic book or two. He lives in Beloit, Wisconsin, with his lovely and brilliant wife, Ann Kolinsky, and their handsome and wonderful son, Martin. They've recently welcomed quadruplets into their family!

Kenneth Hite


Kenneth Hite has been roleplaying since the summer of 1979, and GMing almost continuously since that October. He has written GMing advice (among other things) in the Star Trek Next Generation RPG Narrator's Toolkit, both the Decipher and Last Unicorn Star Trek Roleplaying Game, GURPS Cabal, the third edition of GURPS Horror, the D20 version of Call of Cthulhu, the Cainite Heresy and Guide to the Camarilla for White Wolf, Nightmares of Mine, and in the two collections of his "Suppressed Transmission" column for Pyramid magazine. He does his research on other topics besides GMing advice at the Regenstein Library at the University of Chicago, the largest open-stacks research library in North America. On rainy days, he sticks to the several thousand books that share his house with his (extremely tolerant) wife, Sheila.

Larry D. Hols

Larry D. Hols began gaming by becoming a DM on two days' notice. Since that trial by fire, he's played with and puttered with an unending stream of games and genres. He can be described as a ruthless GM, but prefers to be viewed as Just Plain Mean.

John Kovalic


USA Today called John Kovalic a "Hot Pick." His political cartoons appeared in the New York Times and the Washington Post, and his Dork Tower comic book was launched in June 1998. "Dork Tower may just be the perfect comic book," raved Diamond Comics Distributors, the world's largest book distributor. The Dork Tower comic strip now runs three times a week at Dorktower.com, as well as in Dragon Magazine, Pyramid online, Scrye, Games Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times. Dork Tower is officially translated and published in Germany, Italy, France, Brazil and Spain. John's other creations include Newbies, Wild Life, Beached, and many other features, including Murphy's Rules, The Unspeakable Oaf and Help Wanted, and he's working with Nickelodeon on developing an animated series. If you ask him nicely, he'll tell you how he helped create Games Magazine's 1999 Party Game of the Year, the best-selling, award-winning Apples to Apples, or how he once ended up in the pages of the National Enquirer. In his spare time, John searches for spare time.

Steven S. Long


Steven S. Long is a writer and game designer living in Greensboro, North Carolina. He has designed and written over 70 roleplaying game products, including work for Gold Rush Games, Hero Games, Iron Crown Enterprises, Last Unicorn Games, Pinnacle Entertainment Group, Steve Jackson Games, White Wolf Game Studios, Wizards of the Coast, and others. His work has received numerous Origins Award nominations. In December 2001, Steve and several partners formed a company, DOJ, Inc., and purchased the assets of Hero Games. Steve now works as HERO System Line Developer for Hero Games, a job he's long dreamed of having. Prior to embarking on a full-time writing career, he practiced law. Steve is a graduate of Duke University and Duke University School of Law. Go Blue Devils!

Steven Marsh


Steven Marsh's love for gaming started in 1985, when he was introduced to Dungeons & Dragons by his Social Studies teacher. While attending Florida State University, he worked at a comic and game shop, resulting in a truly frightening collection of both. He graduated from FSU in 1995 with a degree in Creative Writing. His break in the creative aspect of gaming came in 1997, when a letter he wrote (while at work) to Shadis Magazine detailing his theoretical "perfect" issue was turned into the "Special Steven Marsh Issue." He wrote a couple of articles for Shadis before that publication disappeared. In 2000 he became the editor of Pyramid Magazine, Steve Jackson Games' weekly online roleplaying publication, where his column "Random Thought Table" and infrequent articles keep him writing. During his reign Pyramid has received two Origins Award nominations, and became the first electronic publication to win that award in 2000. Steven estimates he owns well over 100 RPG systems, and has GMed or played in about fifty. His biggest pet peeve is being called "Steve." He lives physically in Tallahassee, Florida and virtually at www.waitingforgo.com.

Frank Mentzer

Before he took up gaming as a career, Frank Mentzer was a professional musician. He performed nationwide, and even did a concert at the White House. TSR hired him in 1980. Frank edited and authored several central products (the D&D boxed sets, from the Basic through the Immortal rules among them), as well as many adventures for D&D and AD&D (The Temple of Elemental Evil with Gary Gygax, RPGA tournament adventures, and more). He is the founder of the Role Playing Game Association (RPGA). Frank has been onstage as the Lead Auctioneer at the Origins(TM) and GenCon(TM) game conventions for almost 20 years. These days, he manages "The Baker's House," a pioneer of all-natural baking, in the Wisconsin North Woods.

John Nephew


John Nephew has been a freelancer in the roleplaying game industry since the mid-1980's. His credits cover a wide range: author, editor, cartographer, photographer, graphic designer, layout artist, proofreader, and publisher. He wrote several books for TSR, including co-authoring the Complete Thief's Handbook for AD&D and writing several adventure modules and sourcebooks for the D&D world of Mystara. John is the president of Atlas Games, which has been publishing games since 1990. Atlas Games' roleplaying game lines include Ars Magica, Feng Shui, Unknown Armies, Over the Edge, Rune, and the Penumbra line of d20 adventures.

John R. Phythyon, Jr.


John R. Phythyon, Jr. has been writing professionally in the Hobby Game Industry since 1996. He has contributed to a wide variety of lines including Legend of the Five Rings, Deadlands, Big Eyes Small Mouth, Hong Kong Action Theater!, and d20. He won an Origins Award for his design work on The Sailor Moon Collectible Card Game in 2000. He also writes a monthly column, "Playing to Win," for Comics & Games Retailer. Presently, he is the RPG Line Manager for Avalanche Press, serves on the Game Manufacturer Association's Board of Directors, and Chairs the Academy of Adventure Game Arts & Design. He lives in Lawrence, Kansas, with his wife, Jennifer, and his dog, Brittany.

Jean Rabe


Jean Rabe is the author of 11 fantasy novels, including the hardcover DragonLance Dhamon trilogy: Downfall, Betrayal and Redemption; the Dragons of a New Age Trilogy; and The Silver Stair. In addition, she's written nearly 30 short stories in the Forgotten Realms, DragonLance, Star Wars, and BattleTech settings and for DAW Books. Jean worked as a newspaper reporter and news bureau chief before learning she preferred writing fiction to covering the grisly crimes committed in the Midwest. In her spare time she edits (Sol's Children and Historical Hauntings for DAW), pretends to garden, and buys more books than she can possibly read or hope to fit on her bookshelves. She is a member of SFWA, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.

Janice Sellers

Janice Sellers was born in Los Angeles, California and has lived in California, Australia, and Florida. She started gaming in 1978 with white-box Dungeons and Dragons. Janice started working in the game industry in 1990 at Chessex Manufacturing. After four years there, as the Assistant Production Manager and the entire Roleplaying Department, she realized a long-held dream and escaped to Chaosium, where she worked for three years editing and developing the Call of Cthulhu role-playing game and fiction lines and the Pendragon fiction line. She currently does freelance editing, indexing, and translation for many fine game companies. She has edited thirteen products (games, fiction, and a CCG) that have won Origins Awards, and has won two Origins Awards as an editor. She has a Bachelor degree in foreign languages (French, Spanish, and Russian) from USC, which has had only a small application in the game industry, to the eternal regret of her mother.

Mark Simmons

Mark Simmons is a professional archaeologist and museum educator, currently excavating in the medieval town of Hartlepool on the northeast coast of England. He has been gamemastering for some 20 years, but has failed to persuade any of his pets over this time not to chew his vital GM notes just before the climactic scene of the scenario.

Lester Smith


Lester Smith wants it all. But realizing he can't have it all, this Origins-award-winning designer of Dragon Dice, Dark Conspiracy, and much more has made some accommodations in his life. Recently, one of those accommodations was to leave the relative paucity of salaried game design and take a full-time position outside the hobby industry--as the e-Publishing Director for an educational firm--in order to better feed his rather large family and honor his very large student loan payments. Then--as an accommodation to this very accommodation!--Les partnered with Timothy Brown and James M. Ward to start Fast Forward Entertainment, so as to continue publishing games. You can learn more about Les at www.lester.smith.net and discover Fast Forward's current and upcoming projects at www.fastforwardgames.com.

James M. Ward

Jim currently works toward making his own game company (fastforwardgames.com) grow and prosper in `gods country' Wisconsin. His biggest claims to fame are his three genetically perfect sons and his charming wife who have been conned into staying with him for over 31 years. A short list of his gaming credits include the first science fiction role playing game Metamorphosis Alpha (just released again in a 25th anniversary edition), several original role playing concepts and products, two unusually successful CCGs , and a batch of novels he's quite proud of writing. TSR and he put up with each other for slightly over 20 years. Several other game companies decided after awhile they didn't like him very much so he started his own game company (making him lots harder to get rid of). He loves gaming and reading science fiction and fantasy novels. He doesn't quite know everything about gaming, but what he doesn't know would only fill ten or twelve CDs. He tries to play games every Friday night at the local hobby store. He manages to play poker once a month. Recently he has acquired wonderful grand children, but they don't quite know what to make of him and he tries to hug and make them smile as much as possible.

Ross Winn


Born in Kansas, Ross Winn was raised in Missouri, Nebraska, Texas, and Florida. He began playing RPGs in 1977 (specifically, a boxed set of D&D "Brown Books" received as a gift for his eleventh year). Apart from many published pieces for RTG's Cyberpunk 2020 RPG, he has also done work on Mekton Zeta, Castle Falkenstein, Night Shift's UNSanctioned, and others. His most recent work is on the Action! System Core Rules published by Gold Rush Games. Apart from RPGs, Ross enjoys his two children, cooking, music, art, an amazing group of friends, and a passionate love of books.

Mark Arsenault


Mark has been writing and designing games since 1994 and is the president of Gold Rush Games. Mark's credits include The Legacy of Zorro, Sengoku, and the Action! System Core Rules book. He also does freelance design for other companies, including Citizen Games (Sidewinder), Grey Ghost Press (this book), and Firefly Games (Monster Island). He is also a co-founder and Director of the Game Publishers Association.


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Last modified: 2002-August-23
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