I made it! Musings turns 1 and 400!

Image Credit: Labareda (As a gift to me)

On July 24 2007, I wrote the first post of what was to become the biggest, most incredible project I ever tackled!

Yes, a few weeks behind Stupid Ranger and Dungeonmastering.com, Musings of the Chatty DM turns one today.

What’s more, true to the avatar I created for this endeavor, I managed to post on average more than once a day, for a whopping 400 posts! (Yeah I kinda timed that one, I’m big on symbols)

If we average each post at 700 words each, that’s 280 000 words, which roughly translates in more than 2 Harry Potter Novels!

I set out to prove to myself that I could post quality content on the net, to stop rambling in my gaming buddies inboxes and to become a better DM through introspection and discussion.

What I never expected was that it would make me into a better writer and actually get readers who weren’t in my game group or related to me!

I never, ever believed that I’d last a year, much less garner more than 550 subscribed readers from all over the world. Said subscribers, along with occasional/regular readers, drop for a visit here more than 45 000 times a month!

I also never believed I’d get to cross online path with the cool builders of my hobby, people like Monte Cook, Wolfgang Baur, Ed Healy and I even got an online visit by Mike Mearls.

Thank you all for making this pet project of mine the addictive bundle of satisfaction it has become.

What’s next for the upcoming year? I’m not sure. My professional life is undergoing an early midlife crisis and I’ve been in a holding pattern for something big for quite some time. The outcome of which will shape what happens here. I’ll keep you all posted, this I promise.

Now what I’d like from you all is gifts! Yay! Oh not money, I hope I never get to that point.

I’d like you to share with me (and the readers) one thing you are particularly fond of, something that made you smile, something you created or something you think others would appreciate.

Post it in the comments please.

For instance, it could be (please indicate if it’s not safe for work (NSFW)) :

  • A funny Youtube movie
  • A recipe you like
  • An insightful Forum post
  • Your best Blog post
  • Someone else’s best blog post
  • A link to a good free E-book
  • A link to an awesome song
  • It can be a shy hello from someone who never, ever comments
  • Anything cool, nice, funny or fun!

It doesn’t have to be about RPGs, it should be a bit geeky, but you’re giving so I’m not complaining.

For those who have never created Hyperlinks here’s a quick formula you can copy and paste:

<a href=”url”>Text to be displayed</a>

Where “url” = the web address (inside quotation marks)

and “Text to be displayed” is a word to replace the link like ‘Best Cookie Recipe”.

Now don’t be surprised if my Anti-Spam eats your comment. It’s to be expected. I’ll manually approve all blocked comments every hour.

I thank you all profusely for being such wonderful readers and commenters.

Here’s to hoping I write a similar post next year!


  1. Happy Blogiversary!

    I’ll go totally out of character here and talk about a recipe I love. Ok, it’s not really a recipe as much as … assembling?

    1 crockpot
    1 chicken
    1 sweet onion
    1 cup soy sauce (regular or low sodium)
    1 handful of sesame seeds

    Chop onion into big chunks. Throw into bottom of crockpot. Put chicken on top of onions. Pour soy sauce over chicken. Sprinkle chicken with sesame seeds. Cook in crockpot until chicken is done. You can open it and baste the chicken with the sauce if you want, but you don’t have to. It comes out super tasty (as do all things made in a crockpot!)

    Geek’s Dream Girls last blog post..Online Dating Etiquette 101: Privacy vs. Honesty?

  2. Fixed.

    And mocked.

    You’re welcome.

    EDIT: What do you mean that’s not a gift?


    For those who have yet to experience it, Here Comes… Dr. Tran!

  3. Congratulations!

    As I gift, I present to you the link to the first ever novel I read off the computer screen, years and years ago: James Gardner’s Planescape story Fire and Dust!

    NiTessines last blog post..Board Games of Terror

  4. This may be as much a curse as a present, but if you haven’t heard of it, check out Dwarf Fortress. On the one hand, learning about dwarven underground farming techniques is great for fluffing out your setting; on the other, at least for me, this is the most addicting and time-devouring game of all time. Even though I’m terrible at it.

    Enjoy! And Happy Blogiversary!

    Kavondes last blog post..Still alive!

  5. A shy hello from somebody who never comments!

    And a link to ToME, my favourite game.

    noismss last blog post..A Short Post on RPG Fiction

  6. Congratulations.

    As my gift, I present my favorite webcomic, the astoundingly imaginative Gunnerkrigg Court by Tom Siddell.

    It’s beyond description, but for a rough idea, imagine Neil Gaiman writing Harry Potter.

    Ninetails last blog post..Looking for web hosting?

  7. Bah, made a mistake in the URL. Gunnerkrigg Court is the correct one.

    To make up for it, I present Tales of MU by Alexandra Erin, a long-running serial novel whose premise is, roughly speaking, a D&D world advanced several centuries to an analog of the modern day — which plays host to a coming-of-age college drama. (Some chapters definitely NSFW, though.)

    Ninetails last blog post..Looking for web hosting?

  8. Wow, congrats on the year thing! That is a lot of posts and quite awhile to continuously write in. Kind of need to engineer an excuse like that for myself, I keep getting rusty. πŸ™‚

    I hadn’t really thought about gifts so… I’ll link two things, one of mine and something neat I tripped over.

    A Gourd of Goblin Wine – A short poem I wrote awhile back about getting a wee bit tipsy on faerie wine.

    Drowtales – This was one of the first webcomics I ran across so I’m sure some or most of you have seen it before. Most of the art is rather well done. Some content there is NSFW. One thing that impressed me about it is how the clans are mapped out in a way that allows a rather wide variety of character types yet they still retain some common ties.

  9. Congrats!!!! I suspect you’ve already seen this, but it’s your blog’s birthday, so what’s a guy to do? πŸ˜‰

    I present to you, ,Looking for Group. This is a personal favorite of mine and, if you haven’t seen it, I hope you enjoy it!

    Toms last blog post..Party Versus a Group of Folks

  10. Happy Blogday!

    Here’s a cake! Here’s to many more years gaming and blogging πŸ™‚

  11. WHOOT ! Congrats. And I’d totally have subscribed earlier, except it took me this long to see the log in button WAY down at the bottom here. I’m not observant by any means

    Ok.. so it doesn’t need to be about D&D. THat’s never stopped me from making it about D&D in the past. Never will in the future. D&D holds top place in my heart.. you know.. besides the kids and my husband… I swear. So here’s a site that gave my hubby and I several minutes of ZOMG coolness recently. Haven’t seen you linky to it anywaywhere yet.. but then again I’m new and I don’t read back soooooooo….

    Gamer Bling

    delve into it, the guys pretty funny. And the idea of accesories for a DM being considered bling just tickles me with it’s nerd-factor. My Chain is a string of 20 sideds b****.

  12. Felonius says:

    Been too busy at work to comment much, so I’ve been sadly absent.

    That being said, congratulations. Totally awesome.

    As for your gift, I present to you Freakangels, a completely free graphic novel from Warren Ellis. It’s a bit post-apocalyptic, but it’s well written (to be expect from Warren Ellis), and the art is very solid, and fits the story well. It updates every Friday, and there’s typically about 6 pages per update (that link is to the first episode).

    Congratulations again.

  13. For my gift to you, i will attempt to use my “Spot Software” skill to save you from an impending RSI: http://www.workrave.org/

  14. Congratulations on your first year!

    I racked my brain on what to get you, and decided on a recipe. This is a favorite of mine, and makes a hardy meal:
    Mexican Lasagna

  15. As my gift I leave a comment because I just found this blog today looking at t-shirts! I think this might be an interesting thing to look into since I need help developing my DnD (much less DM) skills.

    Also I leave a link to one of the most hillarious web comics I have ever read: Dominic Deegan Oracle for Hire

  16. As usual you amaze me all with your cleverness, generosity and downright coolness. Thanks to one and all!

    This is X-mas in July for me!

    @GDG: Yum, Alex(my wife) and I are always on the lookout for easier ways top cook and we’ve been trying to tame the crockpot for some time now. Your recipe has been adopted!

    @Graham: Thanks for spotting the glaring critical fumble on dates! Fixed. Oh, I love me some Dr. Tran, cuz, you know, he’s got a Ph.D. in Kicking your a$$!

    @Nitessine: A Planescape story? Awesome, Planescape is one of those concepts I ended preferring to read about it than actually playing it. Bookmarked!

    @Kavonde: Yay! New game! Thanks!

    @noisms: Thanks for the comment and welcome to the blog! The gift and making us discover your blog! Wow a 3 in 1!

    @Ninetail: Nice Save and thanks for the bonus gift!

    @Lanir: Nice poem, it’s a style I would never dare attempt, not knowing that type of English poetic vocabulary (I know it’s not the same, but I never actually read any Shakespeare… that’s what being a French Canadian Science Major does).

    As for Drowtales, I will look it up, I’m always willing to look at scantily clad dark elf beauties!

    @Tom: I do know of LFG, I’ve yet to start reading it, thanks for bumping it up my list. I’m so caught up by Girl Genius I tend to neglect the others.

    @Graywulf: Wonderful cake! I edited the post to show it!

    @Mea: When I meant subscribing I meant the RSS feed (so you can read my post from a RSS reader… the little orange icon just below my smiling avatar links to that).

    That being said, thanks for the link to gamer bling! Me likes gamer lootz!

    @Felonius: That’s okay, the blog ain’t going anywhere for at least another year… come back whenever you can! Thanks for the Online Novel!

    @Darvin: Ahhh, my bloglog/last.fm buddy shows up! Thanks for the Occupational Therapy software! (you had me looking up RSI… wee I learned a new acronym!).

    @DNAPhil: Wow, Mexican Lasagna? This I gotta taste! Thanks!

    @Thomas: Welcome to the blog! Thanks for the webcomic link, I’ll go see!

  17. Congrats !!!

    As a reward I give you a link to something sure to tempt you, but for which, like me you will probably not have enough time for !!

    Hirst Arts

    Buzzregogs last blog post..Hello world!

  18. Girl Genius is awesome too, so I don’t blame you there. LFG is great too though! I’m sure you’ll enjoy it!

    Tomcat1066s last blog post..The Race Race

  19. Congratulations!
    None of my myriad of attempts to get myself on the web have lasted more than 6 months, a whole year seems inconceivable. Wow! I’ve only started reading your Blog within the last couple of weeks, but it’s definitely one of the better ones that I keep track of.

    Well, the only thing I can think to share is the latest project my fiancΓ© and I have started working on (which means I have to spam the link every chance I get ;)): Zounds! The astounding emprises of Douglas and Trilby

    SeiferTims last blog post..Shut Up! Sit Your Ass Down in That Chair and Drink Your GODDAMN Tea!

  20. Congratulations, Chatty! Musings is one of my favorite RPG blogs, and you’ve had a great year. I hope your emergence from your holding pattern is one that lets you continue your excellent posting here, even if you can’t make the — insane! — number of posts you’ve made in the past year.

    Awesome, awesome job. My hat’s off to you. πŸ™‚

    I’d be remiss if I didn’t make my gift a link to Gnome Stew. We turned 100 GMing articles and two months old in July, and with a crew of great authors and readers, it’s by far the coolest thing I’ve ever worked on online.

  21. Congrats on your milestone achievement! I gotta say I feel a little bummed that I didn’t find you blog earlier. You have a nice site, and it’s a good read.

  22. Happy Blogiversary from your friends at ZeStuff! πŸ™‚

  23. What to get the man who writes everything?

    Have some motivational posters.

  24. Thanks again one and all… (oh and Dave? LOL!)

    I succumbed to Gunnerkrigg Court and am going through Lunchtime Archive Binge. Weeeee!! Thanks to Ninetails!

  25. Damn, found this right after posting:

  26. Virgil Vansant says:

    Congratulations, Chatty! I want to thank you for opening up my eyes about gaming/DM blogs. For some reason, they were never on my radar until I stumbled across yours. Now there are several I visit as a daily ritual.

    Although I hold Girl Genius in high standards as one of my all-time favorite webcomics, I also enjoy the comedy sci-fi stylings of Good Ship Chronicles.

  27. Grats Chatty! As I am a little late to the party, please allow me to present a gift of…story! These events happened about 7 years ago during a whirlwind tour or real history campaign I DMed. It was one of the best games I’ve had the privelege of being involved in, and I originally posted them to Paizo.com on the DM kill board. They were funny tales, and deserved to be re-told. My Posting name is Donovan Vig (favorite folk singer with norse word for BATTLE!). If you scroll down, you will see the entries. I recommend reading some of the others as well.

    Also, the first one is not quite NSFW, but close. Fortunately, the website itself is safe (according to my government computer network) ENJOY!

    Apologies if I have butchered the url script, I’m kinda new at this.

    The White Bull of Minos

    Summoning the golden circle

  28. Congrats, Chatty on making it a full year and with an insane number of posts to boot. You are a definite stop during my day (normally a few times to see the quality follow-up comments) and I can always look forward to something insight and thought-provoking. Here’s to another great year even if it is tamer due to your RL commitments.

    Here’s an old standard with our group to listen to especially when a newbie joins and plays the wizard. It mostly okay for work but does use a bad word so your mileage may vary.

    Always the First to Die

  29. Congratulations! Here’s a few things I like:

    Ancient Domains of Mystery, my favorite computer game. (Someone else mentioned ToME above, which is how I got into roguelikes, but ADoM is by far my favorite.)

    A recipe for adobo, the best thing to come from the Philippines:
    Cubes of pork. (Four pounds of pork fed a group of seven, including four hungry boys.) You can use other meat, but pork is best. Cubes ensure even cooking.
    One tablespoon each soy sauce and vinegar per pound of meat.
    Onions (half a large onion for those four pounds was pretty good.)
    Garlic, salt and pepper to taste (for added legitimacy, throw in a few whole peppercorns.)

    Throw all this in a big pot and simmer (no extra water, the pork will cook in its own juices) uncovered until all the liquid evaporates/boils. For extra flavor and awesome, then bake in a 350 degree (Farenheit) oven until it’s all brown and tasty-looking.

    And some D&D themed origami, a combination of two of my biggest hobbies at a level of origami I won’t be able to do for a long time.

  30. Apparently I failed my coding check. Here’s a different link to the same song but put to a video instead. Now for that coding check……

    Always the First to Die

    Deadshots last blog post..Planning a Gaming Marathon at Home and a Surprise For My Players

  31. Wait, we’re supposed to put NSFW warnings?

    How about we make this easy. It’s probably safe to assume that anything I link to is NSFW by default.

  32. Well, congrats, and all that. Something that made me smile, and think a bit happened a few weeks ago. We rented a cottage on a lake and packed up the family for a little vacation. Surprisingly, there was a TV in the cottage, with rotating knobs and everything. Someone renting previously had left the remote control to a camcorder lying on top, that it took a few moments to realize went to a camcorder and not the TV.

    The next night, I asked my 3 year old to turn down the volume of the TV, and she said, without pause or any willfullness, “I can’t Daddy, its the wrong remote.”

    She has no idea of how to interact with a TV without a remote. Made me realize just what my parents felt like when I snubbed their 8-tracks.

  33. Felicidades!

    My present for you is a link to one of the most funny RPGs I’ve ever read: Mazes & Minotaurs, by Olivier Legrand.

    Inspired by an article written by Paul Elliott in his column Tempus Fugit in RPGNet, Olivier wrote the RPG D&D could have been if inspired by the Iliad, the Ancient world and the Harryhausen movies instead of Tolkien, the Medieval world and Vance’s novels ;).

    It’s funny, it’s playable and it’s free! πŸ™‚

    Best regards,

    Carlos de la Cruzs last blog post..Iron Man y Hulk

  34. congratulations! I would like to share a blogpost I found, which contains an extremely funny movie: world of workcraft.

    flashhearts last blog post..Shock! Palaeocon curmudgeon gives RPG negative review!

  35. Reverend Mike says:

    Sharing something that fits all of the above descriptions…I made this one nearly 2 years ago and I’m working on a sequel related to 4e…enjoy!…

    Dungeons and Dragons: Nerd’s Eye View

  36. Sandrinnad says:

    Congratulations! Nice timing on the post numbers too πŸ˜€



    Spanish Skillet (the only recipe I can ever reliably remember)

    you need:

    1 large frying pan
    approx. 1 lb ground meat (whichever meat you prefer. I’ve used beef, sausage, and turkey and they were all good)
    1 med onion (or to taste) chopped however you like it
    garlic (if you like it)
    spices that you like
    1 can canned corn (not creamed, the one with the kernels)
    1 large can or bottle tomato/spaghetti sauce
    macaroni or other short pasta (maybe a cup or two?)

    I’ve added other vegetables too when I felt like it.

    fry the meat with the garlic, onion, and spices until it’s done. Turn it down, add the sauce, corn, and macaroni, then cover and cook until it’s all hot and the pasta is done.

    serves …. probably at least 4.

    this is pretty easy to make bigger or smaller. It freezes and reheats very well (though you’ll probably want to cook the pasta a little bit less if it’s destined for freezing). It’s great the second day and is wonderful reheated and eaten with tortilla chips.


    and a link to something fun a friend wrote πŸ™‚ The Henchmans’ Union’s “So You’re Evil, Now What?” Introductory Package

  37. Congrats; now that you’ve become a Level 2 Blogger, you get extra hit points and new skill ranks!

  38. Labareda says:

    Congratulations. I made a picture which hopefully you can find a way to share πŸ™‚

  39. Congratulations!

    Do you have Encounter Critical? You need Encounter Critical!

    Tor.com also has a crapton of free fantasy and science fiction ebooks (and wallpaper!) but only until Sunday. Hurry!

  40. Thank you all soo much. This was the best birthday ever!

    @Labareda: Your gift is now on top of my post!

  41. Princess Noin says:

    Congratulations! =)

    Here are my favorite RPG artists The Fraim Brothers

    If I completely botched that link, which is likely… =), Just search for brosfraim.com. They do beautiful character portraits!

  42. Good work Phil. I wonder what the site will look like when it’s 5 years old. The questions is: Can Phil last that long without the proverbial blogger burnout?

    I believe the answer is yes, as long as his labor of love remains fun.

    Keep it up, Phil, and i’ll keep reading.

  43. To apologize for my lateness in responding, I give you two things.

    One, a blog post about a player type I know a little too well.

    Two, a twenty-foot fate-twisting demon spider:

    Enjoy, and happy first year of blogging!

    Ravyns last blog post..Character Evolution: Crisis Point (Types of Response)

  44. Congratulations! And more importantly, a heartfelt thanks for all the good stuff you’ve given us and hopefully will give us for years to come.

    The present I would like to give you is a link to a book I recently found online. I’m sure you’ll appreciate it (and in fact, I hope everyone here can learn something from it).

    Sektors last blog post..Favorite Roleplaying Tools

  45. A whole year! Well, I’d say that you have done very well for yourself, & we are all the better for it. You have helped all of our games immensely, introduced us to other folks, entertained us, and gave us tons of topics to ponder and talk about. You’ve even inspired folks like me to start our own blogs, and were very gracious in helping us get started (Chatty put up with me emailing him for weeks while I asked tons of questions) All I can ever do is give you thanks!

    For my present, I offer a great site ofSailing Terms.

    Here’s to another great year Chatty! & again, THANK YOU!

  46. Thanks one and all.

    You make this 1000 times more rewarding than any other non-family projects I’ve ever tackled.

    I’m taking a few days slow/off now. That big job I kept hinting at fell through (I didn’t get it) so I’m reflecting on my continued/new Online projects.

    Good news, I’ll stop hinting that I may retire as I most definitively won’t.

  47. @Chatty – sorry to hear the job fell through. I’ll have to give you a belated Bloggiversary gift because I am down to the final few days to get things done in prep for movers. ARG!

    Heathers last blog post..Life: Home Is Where I’m Currently Not

  48. Hello and congratulations from a new follower of your blog! I found a link to your blog today, and it has now been embedded into my bookmark list and reader.

    If you have not seen it yet, Goblins is an interesting webcomic about life through a tribe of Goblin’s eyes.

  49. @Heather: That’s all right, get settled in and tell us when your life returns to semi-normal.

    @Tenach: Welcome to the blog! Thanks for the gift, I’ve been a Goblin fan for a lonnnnnng time… which helps because updates are somewhat sporadic. I understand that Tarol’s got to eat too…

  50. Tangent128 says:

    Took me forever to think of something that hasn’t already been given; how about a techno artist?
    Kita Khyber
    If you like whatever samples are playing, their albums are free to download.

    They seem to be best known for their 8-Bit Chiptune Rick Roll.

  51. Thanks Tangent 128!

    Here’s to another year of tropes and RPG goodness… Hope you’ll try them someday!

  52. Congratulations.

    Since ADOM was already linked (here’s the guidebook with almost all secrets and spoilers), here’s an open source game of considerable merit: Battle for Wesnoth.

    Tommis last blog post..WoAdWriMo

  53. First of all, congratulations! You did a great job here, I really like it. Well, what can I say? Keep up the great posts and I wish you all the best for the next year!

    Here’s a little something as requested: Weird Game Idea #354796


  1. […] Β» I made it! Musings turns 1 and 400! – The ChattyDM On July 24 2007, I wrote the first post of what was to become the biggest, most incredible project I ever tackled! (tags: rpg) […]

  2. […] – The ChattyDM is one year old and hit quality post #400 last week. Swing on over and wish the site happy b’day on the special post. […]