If you have met Wesley Martin-Sharples then you might know he’s 16, a junior, and an overall cool guy. There’s a chance you don’t know, however, that Wesley is an avid writer and enjoys playing Dungeons & Dragons. As Wesley often plays the role of Dm (Dungeon master), an enjoyment for writing is a perfect attribute to have. However, that doesn’t mean writing is going to be easy. Wesley has no problem taking pre-written stories and making them fun and engaging, but he finds writing and inventing his own tales intimidating.
I have been part of Welsey’s campaigns, which are basically just adventures, for as long as he has been playing. Each time, however, it has been a pre-written campaign from Wizards of the Coast, the current owners of D&D. When the idea of taking parts of a pre-written then molding it into his own thing was presented, Wesley felt conflicted:“[Writing for D&D is] complicated, by taking pre-written characters and putting them in my own scenarios there is a fine line between completely changing a character and keeping them fun.”
Taking characters that have already been defined and pushing them into his own scenarios is not easy. Wesley thought that taking these pre-made characters and using them how he wants sounds fun, but he also was afraid of too harshly changing the character and turning them into something unrecognizable.
Improv and the chaos of D&D is fun, and Wesley enjoys writing. Writing to DM is not like writing a book though, when you’re writing a book you know exactly what is being put in and if there is something you don’t want to write about then… don’t. When playing D&D you can have an outline of what you want to happen, but when you start a session you’re not going to have any idea what will happen by the end. So, when you’re not using pre-written content it’s imperative to have back up plans.
Between keeping a character true to who they are and being ready for any number of things that could happen, it’s very difficult to begin creating your own content, and Wesley’s not sure he’s ready for that. That’s ok though, he still makes D&D enjoyable to play no matter what.