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Welcome to the Weekend Conversation.

While the news team never stops working (or drinking), come the weekend we like to kick up our droid parts and relax. Between issues of the RPGN you'll find an interview to read while you're enjoying your own weekend, and where interviews in the past tended to be shorter and more concise, the Weekend Conversation is meant to be longer: both longer in form, and longer in the making. Whether a random Guild member, or a member that's come up during our crack (ha) reporting during the week.

This weekend we sat down with Lady Amalthea, maker of roleplays, guides, and just general good sense in the OOC sections. She was experienced before she ever got to the Guild, but it's the Guild that's gotten to be the recipient of her knowledge and energy for the last few years. So without anything further, enjoy the conversation.




Alright, to start with, I think it's important we focus on the real substance. Do an immediate deep dive on the important issues. So...

Why MASH and Hot Lips? Excellent choice as it is.

~Chuckles slightly~ Why thank you, I thought it was. Seriously though I love the show and it is a perfect example of taking a base story line and turning it into something memorable and fantastic. It started out as such a simple idea and was almost cancelled before it even really had a chance.

It reminds me of Rping. You take the smallest of ideas, something that may have been done a thousand times, and give it your own spin. Some times just that little twist turns something mundane into something great. A wonderful writing staff, a cast of characters you loved, you hated, you rooted for, you cried for. There is character growth, people live, people die. War, love, darkness, finding a light, and even as the show came to an end and everyone parted ways it left a mark not only on them but everyone they crossed paths with. It is everything a good RP should be.

Why Major Margaret "Hot Lips" Houlihan? She's my spirit animal of course! And reminds me of my journey as an RPer to GM. Naive, brash, passionate, and a bit seeing the world, or in her case the army, through rose tinted glasses. Over time she grew, finding that she was more than just her gender, more than just a nurse, or a major. She was all of that and more. She became a leader in the truest sense to me and and in the end someone to look up to. Someone I hope I can be to others out there as a GM. (You know, other than the Evil GM Overlord. lol)
Lady Amalthea


When did you come to the Guild? How did you find it?

I came to the guild over two years ago but I started on another account, Afina. Though after close to a year on it I felt it was time for a "handle" change for personal reasons. Finding the site was rather easy. You see I had been a mod for Battleon Forums a long time ago in a galaxy far far away but I had been on an extended hiatus due to burn out. When I finally came back the place just wasn't what it was anymore. I felt I needed to find somewhere new. So I went to the one place we all go when we need to find something: Google! I simple search and bam, there were a lot of places. This was the one I was drawn to: the set up, layout, how you could organize your Rp's here, the number of Rpers, and the freedom it gave to any topic you wanted to RP about. The force was strong here, so here I am.
Lady Amalthea


What makes you want to contribute the Guides? What makes you keep doing it?

What was your favorite to complete?

Hardest to write?

Easiest to write?

What makes you want to contribute the Guides? What makes you keep doing it?

When I was starting out RPing online there really weren't any guides, we're talking pre-T1 days. We were trial and error back then and man did we make a lot of errors.... ~facepalms thinking back to some of the stuff she pulled back then~ The longer I was in it the more I learned. As I learned I wanted to help others avoid the same disastrous mistakes I had made. Thing was, the more people I was around Rping on chats and forums, the more I started sounding like a broken record each time I was asked the same question. Solution? A guide. Then I could just link them to it. So I started writing them back on WinMx in the early 2000's and really haven't stopped.

Why do I keep doing it? Because Rp is ever evolving and I am still learning even after all these years. So I keep writing them. If they help someone great, if they don't it's no skin off my teeth because I go back from time to time to review the ones I have written to remind myself of things I might have forgotten or overlooked for a time.

What was your favorite to complete?

Oh, that's easy. Gming 201 - Randomization, World Naratives and LLA. That one was just fun to write. I was able to put down in text how I manage to keep things twisting and turning in my RP's, as well on how to make things easier for Gm's. It can be a complicated system but once in place, well it's just entertaining. Gming can be a pain, anything to make the load lighter is a good thing. Though, in truth I have a lot of fun writing all my guides. (Total nerd.)

Hardest to write?

Hardest is one I am currently working on, Gming 301 - Developing A Mystery RP. This one is proving tricky. I have rewritten three times already and scrapped each one. Trying to get how my mind goes through the process into text is proving harder than I thought it would be but it has been a requested guide, so I will get it done. That is as long as I don't run out of coffee, then all bets are off.

Easiest to write?

That would be the RPers Guide To Etiquette. That one was really too easy to write and very simple to keep updated. Why? I just open it when someone does something in RP or on the forum that.. to put it politely "vexes" me. Then I know exactly what to put there. When I wrote it originally I was seething with frustration, so it just came out. Over time, it just grew. I mean, seriously, doesn't take long for someone to do something that makes you want to slam your head into your keyboard. Or theirs. So it makes it very easy to write.
Lady Amalthea


What makes a bad GM?

I wish I could say there are no bad Gm's out there but sadly there are, and it has nothing to do with lack of experience. It has everything to do with attitude. When you elevate yourself to the status of GM you are placing yourself in a potion of power and well you know what they say - with great power comes great responsibility. Thing is, not every GM handles having that "power" well and well it corrupts them. Gm's that set up impossible scenario's that only their character can deal with. Gm's that batter their players to post but won't keep up or follow their own rules. A GM that screws up and knows it but refuses to take responsibility. Or even worse the GM that has severely misplaced confidence in their own skills and refuses to believe they can learn anything more. I hate to burst a GM's bubble but no GM is all that. Even those like me that have been Gming for decades can learn more and better their skills. I still have a lot to learn even after all these years.
Lady Amalthea


Attitude and social skills have more to do with group RP success than most seem to realize, may be a fair way of putting it?

Do you ever allow for talented but diva players? Have some understanding for easily distracted folks? People that want to know more about the story than others, or want to somehow assist, or otherwise feel part of the process?

Attitude and social skills have more to do with group RP success than most seem to realize, may be a fair way of putting it?

Yes, they are huge factors in the success of an Rp. It doesn't mean that you can't host a successful Rp if you have an attitude. You just have to know how to walk a very delicate line to balance everything.

Do you ever allow for talented but diva players? Have some understanding for easily distracted folks? People that want to know more about the story than others, or want to somehow assist, or otherwise feel part of the process?

Oh god yes! I run the gambit of personalities when dealing with Rpers in my Rps. Divas, attention whores, drama queens and kings. Jerks to downright assholes. Shy people, New rpers, young, old, you name it. All are welcome. As long as they follow the rules of the Rp I am willing to give everyone a chance.

And my peeps assist me and are constantly part of the process. That is a huge part of being a Gm is weaving the PC's into the story, having those mini plots and minor story arcs are essential for character growth. I'm always open to listen and take the ideas of the Rpers. A GM creates the world, the Rpers makes it go.

But as far as knowing more about an Rp than others, I only have two words for you - NO SPOILERS!
Lady Amalthea


What's your favorite thing about the Guild outside of roleplaying?

You mean there's more to the guild outside of Rp!??! ~runs to the window and throws open the shutters~ Holy crap! Lol Seriously though, the P E E P S! Peeps! My peeps are my favorite part of the forum, even beyond RP. I really have the best group of core Rpers that have grown into dear dear friends since I joined the forum, they are my support and my strength. An online family I know I will always be thankful for meeting. Rp, like life, is nothing without people. They make the Rps great and my life more enriched because of their presence.
Lady Amalthea


You mentioned writing a new guide for GMing, but in another thread you mentioned putting together a guide for new users: where did the idea come from? Where do the current ones fall short in your opinion? Are you looking to work with site staff on the project? Have you gotten any pushback going from RP guides to site guides?

It is actually a really old idea from when I first joined the forum. I got the pm like everyone but as I started reading through everything I became a little overwhelmed. Not by the content but the amount of clicking I had to do. There was a lot. And then I found some things were not linked I wish there was and even things I wished there were covered that were not. It wasn't that the ones provided fell short, they just weren't the right feel for me personally. Over my time here I have heard similar from friends on the forum so I figured, why not just go ahead and do that now? If it helps great, if it doesn't no worries.

I'd love to work with the staff on this if they wanted to, but it's not like I am currently working to change what is there. Just more of organizing it. Mine wouldn't be the first user guide to the forum, there are several in the Article's and Guide Section touching on different things.

As far as push back goes, no; haven't gotten any. If there is any, I haven't seen it. Granted, it really wouldn't even be my first site guide here. The Rpers Guide to Etiquette touches on general site manners and I have organized an Article's And Guide index.
Lady Amalthea


Who's your favorite GM?

Hrm, that's a tough one. I really don't join many Rp's, tend to keep to Gming myself. So I haven't dealt with a lot of Gm's as an Rper personally on the forum. Though out of the ones I have I would probably have to say Morose. Her Gming style is very similar to mine as far as rules and enforcement goes, so I am more comfortable letting go of the GM control with her. Not to mention the woman weaves one hell of a story line that keeps you guessing. She brings out the best in her Rpers and is loads of fun to Rp with. As a Gm or an Rper, she really is tops in my book.
Lady Amalthea


In your opinion, what's the Guild need less of?

Besides bots? Trolls, people who believe because others have gotten away with things on the forum because a mod wasn't around that they can do whatever they want; especially on the status bar.
Lady Amalthea


I take it you were encouraged by the recent response to concerns of users by Guild staff?

Very much so. It is one thing for people to individually report things but the reports don't usually go to every mod. A mod gets a pm and handles that event. Not sure if there is a central list or something that lets say one mod know if another mod has dealt with someone in the past, so some things could have slipped through the cracks.

Having an open forum where people get to voice their concerns and all the staff can see it helps. It creates a joint effort between users and staff to help make things better on the forum. I have made reports in the past and they've been handled quickly, effectively, and with care; so I know the mods care. Thing is, they can't help us if we don't speak up. We finally spoke up.

Addressing the concerns of the users is validation. It lets us know we are being heard. It was the first step. Adding another mod to help the current staff was another. We're making progress. Sure not as quickly as some would like but change takes time. I'm just excited to see that change. It's promising and I am hopeful for the forums future. This a wonderful place, working together helps us keep it that way.
Lady Amalthea


We asked.

"There's a Mod sub-forum we (the Staff) communicate on to notify each other of events."
Guild Mods


It was refreshing to see Guild folk come out of the woodwork and try to be (mostly) constructive. I mean we were busy drinking putting together the news post but it gave us more to write about, so we're for it.

Think most respect the power the Guild gives GMs? Ever had to take something to Staff as a GM?

I believe it does. I have been on a lot of forums over the decades and one thing that has been a common issue is the lack of power for the GM's. Needing mods to even be able to tell someone to leave the Rp they are hosting. Mods coming in and telling Gm's they have to let certain people in. The stuff I have seen in the past elsewhere is enough to make you hurl. I've seen forums kill their Rp sections because of this. Knowing the GM's have control here is refreshing and one of many things that has kept me here over the last two years. There are a few things I would like to see for GM's but that is a coding thing. (Like being able to turn over an Rp to a Co-Gm fully if the GM has to leave, being able to edit posts in their own topic instead of having to ask a mod to, things like that.) But again, that is a coding thing and frankly Mahz has enough on his plate, so not even asking for it yet. lol

Taking problems to the staff as a GM? Only to have a post deleted. Other than that no. Granted, I am an Evil GM Overlord. I have a lot of rules and regulations for people to follow and when they submit their CS it has a little note on the bottom stating when they submit the CS they are agreeing to it. My rules also include that my Rpers have to follow the standards of the RPers Guide To RP Etiquette. I expect a certain level of respect from my Rpers, not only towards me since I am running things but towards each other and even the staff: both in and out of RP. If I get word they are causing problems outside of the RP, they are gone and they know it. That is a breach of my rules, rules they agreed to. Entering an Rp of mine is like well... Welcome to Thunderdome! You break a deal, you face the wheel. lol I have had attitude from people I have booted from RP but who hasn't? Yet, it has never been so much that I needed to seek a mods help in the matter beyond having a post or two deleted. Even then it has been few and far between.
Lady Amalthea


"Evil GM Overlord" yet has a circle of friends on the Guild built over time and shared creative experiences via those same RPs you overlord. You can't be that bad. So long as drunk posting is allowed.



My circle just enjoys the same level of complete and utter madness I do. My own little slice of Wonderland and I am the Mad Hatter. There's a reason there are so many empty chairs at the table. Anyone is welcome to show up, few can tolerate everything going stark raving mad.
Lady Amalthea


(Please note the newsroom collectively darting our eyes between ourselves, then reaching for the hard liquor before continuing.)

Outstanding.

Any guides coming soon, or RPs you want to plug? Any shout outs?

Aww, did I make you nervous? That's sooo sweet. ~chuckles~

Well, as I said earlier I have the New Users Guide I am working on as well as Gming 301. I hope to have those done in the next week or two. Hrm, as far as Rp's to plug I only have one that is upcoming - Shadowrun. It will be a Table Top RP but hosted in Casual. I am melding my usual Gming standards and CS with the 3rd Edition Shadowrun set. It looks to be a lot of fun, have two Co-Gm's that will be helping me with everything, Sigil and Dragoknighte. Both excellent Rpers and Gm's in their own right. I am really excited about working with them on this.

Shout outs? Omg, so many! To each and every one of my peeps in all my Rps! Which is a huge list but damn, I couldn't be luckier to have them. We have 3 Rp's that have been going strong for over a year and others quickly closing in on the 1 year mark. So to all my peeps in The Walking Dead, Duplicity, Darker Than Black, Soulless Regency, After Miranda, and Deeper Than The Sands - Major Kudos to all of you! I love everything we have done together and am so looking forward to the twists, turns, and down right mind screws we have coming up! You have made Gming fun for me despite all the work. I couldn't have done it without you.
Lady Amalthea


Thanks again for the time, it was our pleasure. Good luck to you and looking forward to the guides.

Join us again for the next Weekend Conversation when we sit down with new Co-Admin Hank.
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Lady Amalthea
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Lady Amalthea 🦄 / The Elder GM

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@RPGN Thanks for the interview, I really enjoyed it: even if you were drunk and won't remember it in the morning :P
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by RPGN
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@RPGN Thanks for the interview, I really enjoyed it: even if you were drunk and won't remember it in the morning :P


Wait.

Who are y--wemean--beep, boop.
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Mara
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great interview, glad to see a different approach being taken (most notably, placing it in a singular thread, rather than trying to post a wall of text in an issue of rpgn). looks like the ghosts of rpgn past aren't snatching any of you up just yet.

also, cough cough, i'm always up for an interview if you ever need one.
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Lyra
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A lot of kudos for great answers and Hot Lips too!
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by ONL
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@RPGNGood interview, been too long since last I read one of yours...Oops? Keep up the good work! It's always nice to read about the other players here on the guild, especially getting to know the person behind the screen in some fashion.

Then again I'm afraid of being brutally murdered in one of her RP's, so I can't give any negative feedback...hehe...please send help
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Morose
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Awww, thank you so much for the shout out <3 Low key crying a wee bit now.

Lovely interview. ^_^ Ditto about the terror of death
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Sigil
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Extending a thanks to @Lady Amalthea for the mention in the article. Truth is, I came over to RPG because of Lady A. Long standing RPer in her games/storylines. Don't get me wrong, I stayed for the setup; IC, OOC, CS tabs in the same topic is a nice touch. But I'm here because she introduced me to it, pure and simple.

Thanks, Lady A!
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by RPGN
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@RPGNGood interview, been too long since last I read one of yours...Oops? Keep up the good work! It's always nice to read about the other players here on the guild, especially getting to know the person behind the screen in some fashion.

Then again I'm afraid of being brutally murdered in one of her RP's, so I can't give any negative feedback...hehe...please send help


Much appreciated. Good luck with your continued survival!
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Lady Amalthea
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Lady Amalthea 🦄 / The Elder GM

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@ONL Hey, if your character dies, that's on you. I'm not the one sending your journalist after a killer in the middle of a hotel, nor having him trying to pry the brain open of a WWI Vet obviously suffering from shell shock. That is all on you pal :P If he dies, LLA rolled him a 1 LOL
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