Author: John Fredericks

About The Author

John Fredericks

In the early 1980's, John was given the Moldvay Red Box set as a birthday gift. The Blue Expert set soon followed and the mania has yet to subside. Over the years, he has played and GMed various flavors of D&D, Star Trek, Star Wars and the odd superhero game. Most of his recent GMing has been online using virtual tabletops. While not a current photo, John assures you that he has never looked better. Sad, but true. He is the sole proprieter of Sharp Mountain Games on

Letters from Home asd

Letters from Home!!

Today’s guest article is by John Fredericks, and it’s a unique idea we’ve never discussed here before. Thanks, John! Introduction All GMs long for player investment in their characters and in the campaign world. As GMs, we’re often (very) caught up in the planning and running of the game. This makes it difficult for us to gauge whether we are meeting the players’ expectations at the table. In this article, I’ll share an idea that I used recently to garner more player input on their characters and the direction of the adventures. I run a regular fantasy campaign which...

Read More
Gaming With the Very Young asd

Gaming With the Very Young!!

Today’s guest article was written by Gnome Stew reader John Fredericks, and it tackles the topic of gaming with kids as young as four years old. Thanks, John! As parents we all hope to pass on our interests to our children. Whether it is sports, music, art, or gaming, we hope to see that glimmer of interest in their eyes. However, sometimes it takes and sometimes it doesn’t. Not every child (or adult) is wired to like roleplaying games. However, if parents play with their children, at least they will get the chance experience the hobby. And who knows,...

Read More
In a Timely Fashion asd

In a Timely Fashion!!

Today’s guest article was written by John Fredericks, and addresses a topic every GM bumps up against periodically: time, and not having enough of it to do everything you want to do during a session. Thanks, John! Ever played in a session that just would not end? Maybe the GM just couldn’t bring things to a close, and you had work the next morning. At that point, you really didn’t care about the fourth owlbear. Or maybe it was a convention and you wanted to make your next session (and maybe even eat in between!). Sure it’s great when...

Read More

What’s Gnome Stew

Written by a team of veteran Gamers and Gamemasters, Gnome Stew is a widely read gaming blog with multiple awards and close to 3,000 articles. We're dedicated to helping gamers have more fun at the gaming table. Over 2 million visitors can't be wrong!

"I check Gnome Stew every day."
— Monte Cook —

"fantastic blog for game masters, dungeon masters, and rpg fans"
— Wil Wheaton —

"If you aren’t reading Gnome Stew, you’re missing out."
— Wolfgang Baur —

Patronize Gnome Stew!

Join our awesome patrons and help
Gnome Stew do awesome things for everyone!

Keep The Stew Fires Going

Eat The Stew

Get Gnome Stew articles delivered to you via email or RSS.

Click here to get our RSS feed Get Gnomes in your email with Feedburner!

Support The Stew

Click one of these links, shop normally, and we earn a small percentage (at no cost to you).

Spread The Stew: