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Wednesday, August 17 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm

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When You Play the Game of Thrones… Everyone Wins!: Fanfiction and Role-Playing Games for Fiction Writers

Fiction writing classes at the college level are often taught under the assumption that students should be learning to reproduce traditional literary works for print publication. This approach ignores the fact that many undergraduate students do not share this goal and instead take these classes to experiment with their own creative expression. Rather than focusing on print-based literary fiction, this paper argues that students can become more engaged and learn more deeply about narrative concepts and think critically about cultures and characters when they are writing stories in a preexisting world rather than trying to generate their own original settings. The familiarity of preexisting worlds combined with rules of role-playing games helps them feel at ease in the fiction writing classroom, increases engagement, and builds a strong writing community. This approach also allows them greater range to explore multimedia compositions and collaborative storytelling techniques.

Children's conceptions of stories in educational games

The GLS community at large have extolled on the necessity that a story/fantasy has in its relation to educational games. This study is a report on interviews done with 16 children after playing two educational games that were deemed to have high and low amounts of stories by the author and story grammar frameworks found in the research literature. The findings and interviews with the children tend to suggest that characters are of principal importance to children and that game mechanics can be leveraged by children to drive a story when none is present.

Thinking like Writers and Critics: How Adolescent Boys Experience Narrative-Driven Games
Hein, Engerman, Turcotte, Macaluso, Giri

Boys’ interests, values, and motivations are increasingly at odds with those of traditional classrooms. Video games, which have become an integral part of boy culture (Watkins, 2009), have the capacity to cultivate and develop literacy skills (Steinkuehler, 2010). This qualitative study thus investigates how adolescent boys play and learn within commercial-off-the-shelf game spaces. In particular, this paper reports on the study’s third phase and focuses on how narrative-driven games provide boys with safe platforms to think about and discuss literary moments. Findings suggest that players naturally analyze and critique the games’ narrative structures both during and after regular gameplay.

avatar for Jayne C. Lammers

Jayne C. Lammers

Associate Professor, University of Rochester
affinity space research; online research methods; videogame and other digital literacies; writing; 21st century learning; adolescent literacies; English teacher preparation


Jason Engerman

Assistant Professor, East Stroudsburg University

Sagun Giri

The Pennsylvania State University
avatar for Robert  Hein

Robert Hein

State College, PA, USA, The Pennsylvania State University
avatar for Trent Hergenrader

Trent Hergenrader

Assistant Professor, Rochester Institute of Technology
My primary area of research is using games and gaming in English courses, and more specifically using role-playing games to teach fiction writing. I am an Assistant Professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

Osvaldo Jimenez

University of the Pacific

Adam Macaluso

The Pennsylvania State University

Nathan Turcotte

The Pennsylvania State University

Wednesday August 17, 2016 2:00pm - 3:00pm CDT
Agriculture Union South