Create, write, produce, and publish a one-shot adventure — in just one month!

Do you aspire to write adventures for your favorite tabletop roleplaying game systems, but don't know where to start? This is the workshop and community for you!

The Basics

  • What is the schedule?

    November 1-30, 2020

  • How is the course structured?

    The course lessons are all hosted here on our e-learning platform. Each lesson is a written lesson with an activity, and most come with a downloadable worksheet.

  • I live in [x] time zone. How does that affect my participation?

    The lessons unlock over the course of four weeks. You can log in when you're able to and complete the lesson. Work entirely on your own schedule/time zone! None of the lessons require participation at a specific time or date.

  • Is the Workshop focused on Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition content?

    The lessons in the workshop are not specific to D&D, so you are welcome to write for the ruleset of your choice! Some of the resources may be tailored to 5E modules but are easily adapted to any tabletop RPG.

  • I've taken the Workshop before. Can I take it again?

    The answer is ALWAYS yes. We're delighted when folks return for another Workshop! We update the Workshop every time we run it, so there are always new things to learn.

Choose from One of Three Paths to Guide Your Writing Journey

Free

The free path is perfect for those who aren't quite ready to take the leap into adventure writing. You'll get access to downloadable templates, helpful pep talk emails written by industry pros, and access to our Discord channel.

Premium Path - General

The premium path comes with a full curriculum of lessons that walk you through each step of the adventure creation process. This option is great for creators who want to write for game systems other than D&D 5e and publish to platforms like DriveThruRPG or Itch.io. 

Premium Path - DMs Guild Edition

Sponsored by Dungeon Masters Guild

Interested in publishing your own Dungeons & Dragons creations? Dungeon Masters Guild is the only marketplace where you can publish licensed fifth edition D&D titles using intellectual property from Wizards of the Coast. Create adventures, player options, rules supplements, and more using the Forgotten Realms, Eberron, Ravenloft, Ravnica, and other settings, monsters, and legendary heroes and villains of D&D lore. 

DMs Guild path participants can also apply to receive one of eight $200 art scholarships, generously provided by Dungeon Masters Guild.

Paths at a Glance

Content

Free Path


Paid Path


DMs Guild Path

Access to the Discord chatroom


Free worksheets and downloads
Pep talk emails from industry professionals


Access to all lessons included in Workshop


Inclusion in DMs Guild and DriveThruRPG  publishing bundles


Consideration for $200 art scholarship provided by DMs Guild



Inclusion in DMs Guild promotions post-workshop


Register for Your Path

  • Write Your First Adventure | Fall 2020

    This path is perfect for writers who don't want to publish D&D content, or want to publish to platforms other than DMs Guild.

    $35.00

    Register for Gen Path
  • Write Your First Adventure | DMs Guild Path | Fall 2020

    This path is sponsored by Dungeon Masters Guild and designed for writers who want to publish to DMs Guild.

    $35.00

    Register for DMG Path

Fall 2020 Scholarship Program

Thanks to support from generous donors, the Workshop awards scholarships for our fall program. To learn more about how our scholarship program works and how funds are allocated, read this post

This year, we are offering the following scholarship categories:

  • General scholarships 
  • Dungeon Masters Guild Art Scholarships
  • #BlackLivesMatter Fund: Supporting Black ttRPG creators 
  • ttRPG Creators for Pride: Supporting queer ttRPG creators 
  • DOTS RPG: Supporting accessibility in ttRPGs 
  • Uncaged Anthology: Supporting emerging voices in tabletop

Click here to contribute to the Fall 2020 scholarship fund

Apply for a Scholarship or Nominate a Friend

Deadline to apply is October 19th, 2020

What You'll Learn

  • Developing a Writing Process

    How to make writing an important part of your life with tools that work for you.

  • Outlining and Mindmapping

    How to organize your narrative and mindmap the potential threads of your story.

  • Writing Compelling Stories

    How to write an engaging narrative, including how to create villains, NPCs, and settings.

  • Editing and Revising

    How to edit and revise your work, receive feedback, and implement changes.

  • Playtesting

    How to playtest your module, gather feedback, and make data-driven improvements.

  • Designing and Formatting

    How to design interiors and covers, and prepare your adventure for publishing.

Lesson Schedule

Planning and Organizing: November 1-7

This is when you'll assemble your tools, brainstorm, and outline your adventure. 

  • Getting Organized: November 1
    Instructor: Ashley Warren
  • Creating Your Living Document: November 2
    Instructor: Ashley Warren
  • Designing for Accessibility: November 3
    Instructors: Tyler Palermo and Yubi
  • Brainstorming and Ideating: November 4
    Instructor: JVC Parry
  • Adventure Synopses and Hooks: November 5
    Instructor: Jeff Ellis
  • Outlining and Mindmapping: November 6
    Instructor: Alicia Furness 
  • How to Go From Outline to Draft: November 7
    Instructor: Alison Huang

Crafting a Narrative: November 8-16

This is when you'll spend time actually writing the bulk of your module. The lessons in this section are focused on different aspects of narrative design. 

  • Creating an NPC Quest-Giver: November 9
    Instructor: Jessica Marcrum
  • Designing Narrative Obstacles and Challenges: November 10
    Instructor: Beatriz T. Dias
  • Villains and BBEGs: November 11
    Instructor: Nicholas Johnson
  • Biomes and Environments: November 12
    Instructor: Steve Fidler 
  • Incorporating Maps: November 13
    Instructor: Anthony Joyce
  • Five Senses Guide to Creating Atmosphere: November 14
    Instructor: Ashley Warren
  • The Three Pillars: November 15
    Instructor: Bianca Bickford 
  • Worldbuilding Exercise: November 16
    Instructor: Jacky Leung

Playtesting and Design: November 17-22

This is when we'll cover the basics of playtesting and design. 

  • Primer to Playtesting: November 17
    Instructor: David Morris
  • Cover Design Best Practices: November 19
    Instructor: Nimgyu
  • Conveying Mood through Design: November 20
    Instructor: Nimgyu

Editing, Marketing, and Publishing: November 23-30 

This is when you'll playtest and prepare to launch! By November 30, you should plan to release your one-shot into the world. 

  • Editing and Proofreading: November 23
    Instructor: Christopher Walz
  • Marketing 101: November 28
    Instructor: Ashley Warren
  • Being a Good Community Creator: November 29
    Instructors: Anthony Joyce, Justice Arman, Jessica Marcrum
  • Pre-Publishing Checklist: November 30
    Instructor: Christopher Walz
  • Publishing Day and Course Wrap-Up: November 30

PLUS: Pep talks written by TK Johnson, Bianca Bickford, Bell Ball, Ashton Duncan, Willy Abeel, Judy Black, and Vic Jackson Harris

Bonus Resources

  • 24/7 Chat

    Join the Discord channel to share ideas, receive feedback, and brainstorm with fellow writers.

  • Advice from the Pros

    Get advice, inspiration, tips, and tricks from some of the industry's most prolific creators.

  • Downloadables

    Download outlines, guides, and questionnaires to aid in your writing and playtesting.

Our Generous Sponsors

Thank you to everyone who supports the Workshop!


Bundles from Previous Workshops

Curious about the work published during the Workshops? Check out our many bundles available on Dungeon Masters Guild and DriveThruRPG.

Testimonials from Past Participants

“The ttRPG workshop ... provided a writing process that was easy to use and incorporated very helpful tools to assist with everything from the design portion to the play testing. ... I'd highly encourage anyone interested in writing an adventure to participate in a future workshop!”

Arcones

July 2018 Participant

“It was an amazing experience to see a published author's method and work through my own project at the same time. Great directions and incredibly inspiring and helpful.”

Jerrod Bacon, "Pyronide"

July 2018 Participant

“The workshop was excellent —informative and supportive with lots of helpful comments, critiques and collaboration from Ashley and all the participants. ... The lessons were relevant and timely, and seemed to flow well with where people were in their writing process. ”

DM_FromScratch

July 2018 Participant

“Definitely worth it. Ashley Warren has created something really fantastic & I am so glad I took part in the summer workshop.”

Jason (Jay) Miscia

July 2019 Participant

“Fabulous lessons and A+ community”

Ellie

July 2019 Participant

“I participated in the Workshop this summer and it was life changing! Not only did I gain valuable information and experiences, but I made friends and now feel much more a part of the #TTRPG community. 500/10 would recommend!”

Blinne Emersyn

July 2019 Participant

“Joining the RPG Writer Workshop has been the most fulfilling and welcoming experience that I've had in a long time. The connections and friends made, the knowledge gained and the confidence I have has grown. I've gone from being unpublished (and no writing projects), to 2 adventures, 3 supplements, a few collaborative projects, as well as charity bundles in just 7 months. I highly recommend joining the discord and the courses whenever possible. They've proven invaluable for getting my foot in the door and learning how to be a TTRPG writer.”

Christopher Harding (@Xanethlyon)

November 2019 Participant

“The RPGWW is not only a fantastic little community, it's also a powerhouse of project management for first-time TTRPG writers. Even if you're an experienced writer or illustrator, the RPGWW framework is a great new way to think about a module from start to finish. Best part about the community? You have baked in real-time access to peers and resources to make your debut into the TTRPG scene. Bonus: You'll still have them when you stick around after you publish module #1. I'm very pleased with how much I've been able to get done since I joined.”

@tlmasseywrites / TL Massey

November 2019 Participant

“The Write Your First Adventure workshop gave me the tools, motivation, and communal resources to publish my first TRPG adventure. The importance of having a defined goal every day cannot be overstated. This course will make you a better author and a better game master, guaranteed.”

Matthew Wulf

July 2020 Participant

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RPG Writer Workshop Course Catalogue

Level up your adventuring with our open RPG Writer Workshop courses!

  • Dungeon Design Essentials: Treasure

    $29.00

    Register
  • Publishing Your Campaign Setting: A Primer

    $29.00

    Register
  • Marketing 101 for ttRPG Creators

    $19.00

    Register

Free Workshop Programs and Resources

  • Job Board

    The Job Board connects creatives with industry opportunities

    Free

    Sign Up
  • The Vault

    The Vault is a regularly updated portal with links to resources about every aspect of writing tabletop RPG content.

    Free

    Sign Up

Questions? Contact hello@rpgwriterworkshop.com