Oren Ashkenazi

Oren is a grumpy old man whose physical age hasn’t quite caught up with him, at least that’s what the kids who won’t get off his lawn keep saying. He’s been into roleplaying games since he was knee-high to a d10, and into prose writing for nearly as long. He loves stories and games that push the envelope of storytelling, like the Discworld series and the RPG Primetime Adventures. He’s also a huge Star Trek fan, though his rants on the mistakes of Voyager and Enterprise might make you think otherwise.

Q&A

How Can We Make RPG Languages Work Better?

questions and answer talk bubbles

Can you write a column about language proficiencies as a game mechanic? Are there any games that do it right? Language proficiencies (esp in DND5e) often feel like they suffer from the problem of being too situational and thus expensive for their cost, and it … read more »

Podcast

230 – Prequels

The Mythcreant Podcast

If you liked a story, surely you’d love to see what happened before that story, right? No? Well, that’s the logic that drives so much of what we’re talking about today: prequels. Why do prequels happen? Why are they usually bad? Is there anything we … read more »

Worldbuilding

Water Travel Before Engines

A photo of the Olympia, a replica Trireme from the Greek Navy.

Some time back, Chris wrote an excellent treatise on the difficulties of Land Travel Before Engines, and now it’s time to cover the other half of that equation. Water covers most of our planet’s surface, and voyages are a common staple of fantasy. Whether your … read more »

Podcast

229 – Research

The Mythcreant Podcast

Sometimes we want to put something in our stories, but we don’t know much about it. What’s the answer? Research! Whether it’s the specifics of knotwork on a Phoenician trade ship or the grand sweep of empires colliding, research is a vital skill for speculative … read more »

Podcast

228 – Lampshading

The Mythcreant Podcast

Three people with opinions recording a podcast, what a ridiculous notion! See what we did there? That’s called lampshading, or when a story deliberately draws your attention to some aspect of its production, usually a flaw. It’s often a great source of laughs, but is … read more »

Podcast

227 – Voice

The Mythcreant Podcast

An author’s voice is generally considered to be important; sometimes it’s even said to be the most important element of writing. But what is voice, exactly? Is it really that important? Does it change from book to book, and how is it different from character … read more »