By Kelli Fitzpatrick, STA Contributor
I had the privilege of working on several Star Trek Adventures publications in a variety of different capacities – some as a writer, some as an editor, and some as a proofreader. The process of proofreading a manuscript requires careful attention to every detail: what’s being said, how it’s being phrased, and the minutiae of language usage that creates a consistent style. For me, the most enjoyable proofreading jobs are manuscripts that I learn something new from while reading them, and the Player’s Guide and the Gamemaster’s Guide are two books that fit that bill. They are packed with excellent advice for all players and gamemasters, including those who are brand new to role-playing games, as well as those who have been running Star Trek Adventures campaigns for years.
The Player’s Guide provides a wealth of information on how to get the most enjoyment out of playing Star Trek Adventures, but also how to contribute productively to collaborative storytelling. There is considerable depth of description on how to embody a character. I particularly appreciated the description of the full duties of each character role (such as everything an operations officer is actually responsible for), as well as the new character types (such as Allied Personnel).
As an aspiring gamemaster, I found the Gamemaster’s Guide to be an ideal resource for anyone looking for an overview of how to approach running a tabletop RPG (while some of the content is specific to Star Trek Adventures, much of the advice is applicable to gamemastering in general). The advice on cultivating a safe game space is thoughtful and nuanced. My favorite section might be the one on different styles of play and the kinds of game experiences that can result from each. I will definitely be using the tips in “Your First Session.” Experienced Star Trek Adventures gamemasters might especially like the chapter on “Additional Rules” which offers new options.
My approach to proofreading involves carefully combing the manuscript for consistency across the sections and chapters, looking for any grammatical errors or duplicated text, checking section headings and punctuation, fixing any deviations from the publisher’s style guide, and scanning for anything that looks off or might interfere with a reader’s ability to understand the text. The proofing process requires frequent referencing of the Star Trek Adventures style guide and the Chicago Manual of Style (the industry standard for general English language usage). I always try to keep in mind the vast diversity of readers, players, and gamemasters who make up the Star Trek Adventures community, and proof accordingly.
It was a pleasure to proof these books and contribute to their usefulness for readers. These two volumes are excellent investments for any tabletop gamer, and I hope they enhance your play for years to come.
Thanks for reading this article, and thank you for your interest and support of Star Trek Adventures! Keep frequencies open for news about additional STA products in the coming months. Live long and prosper!