This episode is a completely fantastic return to form!

Here is the official blurb:
The play "She Kills Monsters" by Qui Nguyen is a weird combination of madcap comedy and heartbreaking coming-of-age drama all told inside a D&D module from the 90s. We talk to Lance Gharavi and Antoinette Martin-Hanson, the director and star of a new production at Arizona State University. Listen to the podcast here. Subscribe to the Official D&D Podcast on iTunes to get updates for new episodes. Shelly, Greg and Trevor are always talking to creative Dungeons & Dragons players like comedians and TV writers Mike Drucker (The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon) and Jared Logan (The Late Late Show with James Corden), as well as professional game masters Griffin McElroy (The Adventure Zone) and Matt Mercer (Critical Role) and actors like Rainn Wilson (The Office).

The connection with Drama and D&D  is tight and it is good to see the connection underlined at the end of this.

The last few episodes have also done well dialing into the correct age range--like family friendly, but innuendo is ok--which I think is great--they are moving away from a more stuffy corporate style.

Also, this is another "art" themed cast--I think Mr Tito brings that energy and it is really nice--specifically the Actor and Director bring an amazing openess and energy to this podcast. Also, they mention Bikini Kill which is FANTASTIC.


Death House--Curse of Strahd Intro Adventure


I am Not a Goob

The last D&D Podcast had this random comment from one of the art directors that one of the Ampersand artists was in a relationship with a "D&D Goob".

It was clearly meant to be playful and endearing.

I heard it very differently.

Now, if it had come from Shelly or Greg, I likely would not have even noticed--but the Art Director had previously said several things that made it clear she was not "one of us" and so her comment struck me with the force of a 9th grade hallway slam--if you know what I mean.

Some Art Kid calling anyone a Goob immediately triggers me and I really wish it did not. I get defensive. It makes me mad--I want to strike back and shame them, and taunt them, and explain to them that they do not know what it was like growing up playing D&D...The way in which playful and endearing can switch to mean and exclusionary.

And I have no idea where I am getting this "one of us" feeling--sounds like some Fake Geek Girl conspiracy or Anti-Cosplay idiot response...Right Fun...I mean The Art Director's likely had a lot more crap in their life then I have had in mine & for me to get all prickly over this is just lame...

But it is not going away...

And I *know* I am being hyper over sensitive to this at some level. And I wish I could let this go--but I am literally thinking about it a lot & hoping a blog post may help is likely the worst form of desperation, but but but...

I am tired of being called names.

I have been tired of it since 1982. I am not a nerd, geek, goob, or anything else. When the Deadpool movie comes out I do not need a lot of articles explaining what it means to be nerdy... Articles on how to have a Geek Valentine's Day are not helping...

I am tired of it & I am struggling to come up with a creative response...



D&D Podcasts By Shelly Mazzanoble and Greg Tito

Shelly is again joined by Greg Tito for another fantastic episode! Here is the blurb:

Creative Director Shauna Narciso and Art Director Kate Irwin share insights on the visual look of D&D and the Curse of Strahd adventure, which is available in March. Listen to the new podcast.

They discuss the art of the new season which looks amazing!

They discuss the recent shift from a more "where we come from" art direction, to a "where we are now" which I think is healthy and challenging...I mean I really loved the last Art team [and all the work they did with the community--I feel like in some ways they taught me how to look at D&D Art], but these women seem to bring a more Artistic [rather than Commercial] aesthetic to the D&D projects which I think is healthy.

They talk a lot about the Dragon+ Covers which is totally awesome--their passion, involvement, and knowledge really shines through and brings more detail to the work that they have done. Their thoughts on now legendary Zuggtmoy cover are fantastic:

One thing about this issue which I am embarrased to admit bothered me was that one of the art directors describes a D&D Fan as "a big D&D Goob". Now I grew up being called a nerd and I have come to accept that some people call us Geek's and that we have to own our insults and all of that--but for some reason it bugged me--and the fact that it goes by uncommented on was odd--like Greg & Shelly do not say anything--don't even comment--it is like insulting ourselves is now ok everywhere or something. I mean, if I get called a 'goob' I am going to respond & I would expect Shelly and greg to as well--maybe I will follow up with them on twitter...