Role Playing Games Considered as a Creative Writing Course
I was reminded of this observation recently by conversation in World of Warcraft in which a player was discussing with others his problems in writing. It was clear, in context, that the writing was neither a school assignment nor an attempt at a publishable novel or short story, but posts to one of the World of Warcraft forums. Such posts often take the form of fictionalized accounts of things that actually happened in the game. I will not be surprised to discover, ten or twenty years in the future, that some of the new generation of authors, especially fantasy authors, got their start there.
My own non-fiction writing largely developed during the years when I was producing a monthly column for The New Guard, a conservative student magazine on which I was the token libertarian columnist. There too, I was writing not as a school exercise but because I actually had things I wanted to say.
All of which fits into my general views on the advantages of unschooling, education that takes the form of doing things one wants to do, learning things one wants to learn, over the approach to education embedded in the conventional K-12 curriculum and many college courses.