Everything I Need to Know I Learned from Roger Corman

Let’s revisit my earlier statements that I sometimes feel like the Ed Wood of tabletop roleplaying games. I have great passion and great vision, like Ed. I have no budget and limited talent with which to harness that passion and execute that vision, like Ed. I have great friends who will be supportive of whatever I do, not matter how weird it is or how badly it flops, like Ed.

I’d really prefer not to end up directing porn and dying young, though. Like Ed.

Thinking this through some more, I’ve decided that I’d rather be the Roger Corman of tabletop roleplaying games. He’s never won any significant awards (well, he got an Oscar for his body of work and his collective contributions to fimmaking, but not for the gravitas of any single film), but he’s made a lot of movies. He’s made some good ones, some critically well-received ones, but that’s just playing the odds, because he’s made what, like a film a week over the course of his lifetime? He’s made a lot of crap films, but he’s entertained people, and he’s made a nice living. He’s worked with, and even discovered, some amazing talent. He’s lived a great life, doing something he really enjoys. You can’t beat that.

When I decided to go back to college for another degree, one that might have some practical benefit, I chose business. Not to be crass, because I think the goal of life is to make money. Not because I’ve abandoned any dreams of making art. I’m not making art. I’ve never made art. I make entertainment. I want people to have fun. To do that costs money. To really do that, it helps if the entertainment you’re making pays enough that ou don’t have to work a day job, so you can spend your time making more entertainment. That requires some business savvy. Which, some people say, precludes one from being an artist. I’ll pass on the whole starving thing.

By the end of this year, things will start to settle down, or at least we’ll be settled in. We’ll be in Finland. I graduate with my Bachelors in Business Administration in November. And then, with luck, I can unleash my inner Roger Corman. Then, if things go according to plan, I can let ‘er rip and start unleashing a string of highly entertaining, if low budget, roleplaying games into the world. Then, if I’ve got it all figured out the way I think I have, I can make enough money to support Katie and I from this kooky niche hobby industry while she’s getting her Master’s degree in a respectable profession for grown-ups.

I don’t make art. I make entertainment. Let’s have some fun.