Roleplaying and Writing


I’ve long been of the opinion that roleplaying is a key way to improve your writing, especially dialogue skills. I like to think that dialogue is one of my strong points and it’s certainly the part of writing that I enjoy the most. The reason I believe I’ve been able to develop a talent for writing believable, natural-sounding, and enjoyable dialogue is an awful lot of roleplaying as a teenager.

Everyone will think of something different when they hear the word ‘roleplaying’. For me, it means burying myself in a character, thinking and responding quickly as them, and having a really good laugh. My first proper experience of roleplaying was pretending to be a character from the Harry Potter series with a group of friends on the internet. It was silly, irreverent, and incredibly funny. It also taught me to think on my feet, to quickly cook up responses in-character, and woe betide anyone who slipped off the grid for their character. The game was fun, and it was excellent training for honing in on a character’s voice and learning how to channel their speech.

I recently got into roleplaying games again, though nowadays I play them more for the fun and social aspect than the writing. To anyone who would knock ‘geeks’ who shut themselves inside to play Dungeons & Dragons or Warhammer – these types of games are actually far more sociable than sitting in a busy, noisy pub or club. It’s all about a collaborative storytelling experience, and can be incredibly atmospheric.

So if you’ve never tried this sort of thing, maybe you should. Don’t let the geeks have all the fun.


About sarahgracelogan

Sarah Grace is an itinerant scribbler and general layabout. She runs a writing group called CAKE.shortandsweet, because any form of procrastination from actual writing is always attractive to the serious author of refined taste. When not distracted by laser pens, Sarah Grace writes novels, short stories and flash fiction, poetry, stage scripts and screenplays. She has performed her work at Stirred Poetry, Bad Language and Tongue in Cheek Manchester. Her first publication, Humping the Boonies is a self-published chapbook available directly from the author, or from Travelling Man, Manchester. You can find more details about her ongoing projects, not to mention a selection of free stories up for grabs right here on her blog. She also likes to talk about theatre, film, books, photography, and especially games and other things that involve collaborative storytelling. Sarah Grace likes feedback, in whatever form it comes.

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