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 I Justify a World Without Colonialism?

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Hi, it’s me again! History buffs: What do you think of this? Demons (more monster- than villain-like) have made sparse attacks on humanity since forever, and all cultures have had mages to defend themselves. However, in the thirteenth century, there was a massive surge of … read more »

Podcast

219 – Over-Burdened Stories

The Mythcreant Podcast

This intro was originally five paragraphs long, but that would have been way too much information, so I shortened it. Coincidentally, we’re talking about over-burdened stories. What makes a story over-burdened, you ask? Listen and we’ll explain! We talk about how stories get loaded down … read more »

Analysis

Five Characters With Strong Arcs

Character arcs come in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes they fade seamlessly into the plot, but other times the characters go through major changes and become different people by the end. Both types of arc are valid, but it’s the second category we’re looking at … read more »

Worldbuilding

218 – Infernal Realms

The Mythcreant Podcast

Whether we call it the underworld, Hades, Hell, or some other name, fiction is full of the idea that there are other dimensions out there, and that they’re bad. At the very least, they’re the sort of places we avoid for as long as we … read more »

Roleplaying

Building a World for Treasure-Seeking Campaigns

Indiana Jones staring at the idol from Raiders of the Lost Arc.

Venturing out into the unknown and digging up treasure has a long history in RPGs, stretching back to the beginning of Dungeons and Dragons itself. For decades, players have delved dungeons, defeated dragons, and been rewarded with glittering gold pieces for their trouble. While this … read more »

Analysis

Six Unsatisfying Character Arcs

Anakin looking out from under his hood with his yellow eyes in Revenge of the Sith.

Character arcs form the backbone of many a story. A successful upward arc fills the audience with fuzzy warmth, while a well-crafted downward arc delivers powerful pathos. But not all arcs are put together well. When a character’s change is rushed or unjustified, it often … read more »

Worldbuilding

217 – Cool Aliens

The Mythcreant Podcast

We’re not saying this podcast is about aliens, but it’s about aliens. Specifically, what makes aliens cool and how that is different when you’re talking about alien characters vs alien monsters. We go over options for making aliens feel unique and cool while also keeping … read more »

Worldbuilding

Five Setting Details With Horrifying Implications

Rayla putting her hand out to a baby deer in Dragon Prince.

Worldbuilding is a core aspect of speculative fiction. Not only do fantastic worlds provide critical novelty, but they also allow for fun new plots and powerful messages! But when storytellers aren’t careful, seemingly minor worldbuilding details can have major implications. Sometimes, those implications are really … read more »

Q&A

How Should I Alternate Action Scenes?

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Hi! Very general question on plotting, but… is there anything in particular one should think of when alternating between calmer parts of a novel and more action-filled parts? I’ve really tried to take all the advice on how every chapter should have conflict etc., and … read more »

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