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Below is a brief description of what I’m trying to do. Check out the FAQ for more details.
I’ve spent about five years researching, thinking about and lecturing on safety in live action role-playing games or larps. “Larp safety”, I’ve learned, is actually an umbrella term not just for keeping participants alive and unharmed (things like fire safety and weapons simulations) but also for enabling trust and co-creation (things like playstyle calibration mechanics and community design). All of these, however, always interact with each other in a system. That’s why a simulation mechanic that worked great in one larp might flop in another one, and why different sets of players might end up playing the exact same design in a very safe or very risk-taking manner.
I’ve started work on a book, Safety in Larp – Understanding Participation and Designing for Trust. My problem is that this subject is unendingly fascinating. I keep thinking about additional sub-areas and running across great sources that require reading, so it’s best to publish stuff along the way! This blog will do three things. It’ll document what I’ve already learned from the community so far, share my research as a read up and reflect on what everyone else is doing, and respond to questions or input from you.
What I’d Love From You If You’re Into This Stuff!
Money really helps. The finished book will be somewhat of a niche product and I’m not expecting to make a mint from actual sales. So, yea, Patreon!
Encouragement is just as important! Writing is a lonely job (I know, since it’s my living). Even if you can’t pledge, being a reader or spreading the word would be super helpful for my long-term motivation.
Finally, I’m hoping to tickle your curiosity and inspire you to design new exciting systems to enable every imaginable kind of larp, even content you thought could never be explored in a responsible manner in the medium!
About Patreon: You can pledge for instance a dollar per post on Patreon. I’ll charge on Patreon only when I’ve posted something meaningful on the blog (which tends to mean looooooong posts, because that’s just who I am, sorry). But I might also do shorter posts, like links to awesome stuff, and I won’t charge for that stuff – and obviously you can cap how many dollars a month you’re willing to spend. Really, do that. I might go crazy and post like ten times in July. Read more about how Patreon works on their site!
I’m a professional writer, experience design consultant and media analyst. I’m very busy, and do very interesting things (like writing plays, books, and comics, hosting the Nordic Larp Talks and Alibis for Interaction, working in television)… But larp is my life-long passion. Thank you for allowing me to engage with it even deeper.
The picture is of me as Professor Vellamo at the first run of College of Wizardry. Picture by Nadina Wiórkiewicz