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Beware the Siren & Get Better At What You Do | Dollars & Dragons - Issue #4
GM advice & NPC art preview: We'll apply some psychic damage to your brain with this issue.
Pro GM advice
I've been a full-time pro since March, only 3 months after I started.
5 things I do to stay on top of the rankings and make more $ than 99% of stream D&D personalities:
1. DON'T BE HUMBLE
The biggest barrier to most GMs getting started is that they've been told all their lives that they should be grateful to do all this work for others.
You're skilled and should be compensated. Own that.
2. WORK FOR IT
A majority of people stroll into pro GMing thinking that it's like the free LFG subreddit.
When players aren't happy? They'll ditch your table right away.
Either you're running a great game or you aren't.
I often say to toss out a majority of advice/feedback, bc it's impossible to please everyone. This is from the perspective that you've honed your craft. If you've put in the hours as a storyteller/performer, you just need to put in the hours for your biz.
You're going to struggle at first to fill 1-3 games. You're going to learn a lot. Don't shy away from that. Embrace the uncertainty and listen to the people who currently run a full schedule.
3. DON'T LISTEN TO AMATEURS
They are not going to give you actionable advice. They're just repeating talking points they don't understand.
Or their intent is not for your success, it's for their satisfaction. Player/amateur GM/newbie pro GM. Whatever, all the same. Not helpful.
4. ADAPT TO CHANGE
The market is going to throw you curveballs often. Your best table might fall apart.
That's freelancing, baby!
Until you have a strong community who is loyal to you, things are going to be rocky. Don't quit your day job. Be ready to try new things.
5. ALWAYS IMPROVE
I often am asked: Is your love for the game diminished since you started doing it as a pro? Simple answer: No. But that is bc I choose to remain passionate.
You will not scale to full-time if you are not driven enough to consistently work on your craft.
All of the top-ranked GMs spend their time improving their skills, their campaigns, and their presentation. They love getting better. This requires humility and an entrepreneurial spirit.
That's not everyone. Is it you? I don't know.
The Vineyard's Siren
Later this month: We're releasing her statblock, lair, backstory, plot hooks, and art into a handy PDF for you to haunt your players with! Perfect for a Halloween One Shot! We're also opening up a Discord community server where you'll be able to find lovely people to playtest this and future preview material with! Check your inbox every Friday morning.
Our team’s last ask: It would help out the team immensely if you hit NOTIFY ME ON LAUNCH on our pre-launch page.