Roll for Initiative: Writing Dungeons & Dragons

deadline for submissions: 
December 15, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Suzanne Richardson and Daniel Shank Cruz
contact email: 

Roll for Initiative: Writing Dungeons & Dragons

            We seek submissions in the genres of the essay (creative nonfiction or critical/theoretical), poetry, and the interview for an anthology that will take a literary perspective to examine all aspects of Dungeons & Dragons (D&D).

            D&D is in the midst of a renaissance, attracting new players from all walks of life since the release of the streamlined fifth edition in 2014. The game has made appearances on television shows such as Stranger Things and The Big Bang Theory, and celebrities such as Judi Dench, Tim Duncan, and Stephen Colbert are open about being players. However, despite D&D’s roots in literature (e.g., see the bibliography of sixty literary texts that influenced the game’s creation in the Player’s Handbook, fifth edition), there is little literary work on it. Roll for Initiative proposes to fill this gap.

            Submitted work might address D&D’s relationships with subjects such as academia, animal studies, apocalypse, bullying, decolonialism, ecocriticism, ethnicity, feminism, intersectionality, intertextuality, kink, linguistics, material culture, narrative, nostalgia, obsession, politics, queerness, religion, resistance, sex, spatiality, tarot, tattoos, teaching tool, theory, writing, or other topics.

            Creative nonfiction might address, but is not limited to, your relationship to, or role within, a campaign, a character you’ve designed/played, or how the game has informed your growth and understanding of self and world. We are open to experimental and flash forms as well. 

            Interviews might be with folks who have contributed a great deal to D&D culture either through working on the game itself or becoming a prominent public figure in the D&D community (through podcasts, acting in films that portray the game, or writing literature around the game). We would also accept interviews with hardcore/long-term players who felt they had something important to say, or a unique perspective on the game and culture. 

            Poems may be in any style or form.

            Essays (whether creative nonfiction or critical/theoretical) and interviews should be between 5000-6000 words, and should be formatted according to The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th edition. Please submit no more than five pages of poetry. The anthology will not include fiction.

            Finished pieces are due by 15 December 2020 to Suzanne Richardson ( and Daniel Shank Cruz (