Welcome to an interview for the series Game Credits Who’s Who (#GameCreditsWW). Ever read the credits page of a game you enjoy and wonder about the various positions listed? Would you like to work in the game industry someday but are not sure how some of the positions work? This Monday series will take a personal look into those positions and introduce you to real people doing those very jobs in the game industry. This week, let me introduce you to Lynne Hardy, an RPG writer.
Tell us a little about yourself and what you do as a writer.
I was born and raised in Nottinghamshire, just down the road from the Major Oak and the church where Robin Hood and Maid Marian were married (I think Little John is supposed to be in the graveyard as well), so my childhood was filled with legends and stories. My family were from the Northeast originally, and I moved back up there for university. After getting my degree and PhD in biochemistry and human molecular genetics, I moved to Canada for a year, where I was very fortunate to join Robin D. Laws’ gaming group. After I came back to England, I married Richard, who I’d originally met at Durham University’s Treasure Trap LRP society, and settled down permanently in Northumbria. Since then, I’ve worked as a biomedical researcher and lecturer, a craft and embroidery teacher, and a full time editor and writer.
How did you become a writer?
I’d always written stories and won several English prizes at school, but gaming writing began for me after I sent a few sample scenarios to Wizards of the Coast for the Talisanta RPG. They got in touch and paid for me to go to Euro Gen Con down at Camber Sands, where I met the Nightfall Games gang. I wrote a few things for them, only one of which saw the light of day, sadly. I did bits on and off for years after that, largely for Pelgrane Press‘ Dying Earth game, before going full time as a writer a little over four years ago.
Share with us some of your recent projects.
I’m lucky in that, as a freelancer, I get to work on lots of things. Being an editor as well also really helps keep work varied and interesting. There’s a couple of things I can only hint at as they’re still very much in the pipeline, but one is a scenario that will form part of a campaign book, while the other is a big campaign of its own. I’m currently editing the Blue Rose RPG for Green Ronin, and have just had a short story published in the Cthulhu Lies Dreaming anthology from Ghostwoods Books. The last really big book I wrote was Shadows of Atlantis for Achtung! Cthulhu – my final contribution to the Kickstarter project, which saw me we work on eleven of the books as line developer, writer and/or editor.
I’ve also been writing talks on historical embroidery techniques and preparing embroidery workshops for my other job as a community craft teacher.
What is your greatest frustration or pet peeve as a writer?
Hmm, tricky. I suppose the biggest one is that a lot of people don’t consider writing to be a proper job. Because I work from home, people have a tendency to think I do nothing but sit around drinking tea and watching bad daytime TV. They also seem to think I earn loads of money and are really disappointed when I point out writing is, except for a very lucky few, really badly paid!
How can readers learn more about you or contact you?
I tweet regularly via @Cogsandcakes, and allegedly have a blog (which I neglect horrifically). My Youtube channel has a grand total of one video – a game I ran for the wonderful ConTessa (see if you can spot the teapot!) and the books I’ve worked on are pretty much all available from either Drivethru RPG or Amazon, if you’re friendly local gaming store or bookshop can’t get them for you.