William Sobelis creating fictions, RPGs, and tabletop advice
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This tier is all about education. Once a month I will write tips and tricks from my experience in the tabletop industry focused, mostly, on operational and logistical things (such as sales, marketing, etc.) called the Roll With It column.
At the Hero Tier, each month you'll receive a piece of flash fiction. These stories will be between 1000 and 3000 words and will usually be science fiction or fantasy, though it'll be whatever strikes my mood at that time. You'll receive this during the month as a PDF or eBook.
I’m game designer, writer, operations manager, industry advice-giver Will Sobel. I’ve worked in the tabletop industry for several years, viewing it from several different angles at all the different tiers. When I was younger, a family friend owned a sports cards store, and eventually, they moved into comics, and after some time they wanted to expand into gaming, but that came with opening a brand new store, with new branding and a new storefront. Without the knowledge and passion, they asked me for help – and then I ended up running the store for almost two years.
After that I uprooted, unable to stay in my small hometown in southern Illinois. Small towns have this strange magnetic magic that corrupts and drains the souls of some people, and I was unable to be happy or energetic or crazy in that area. So I reached out to some friends and found a job with a chain store called 2nd & Charles – owned by the same company that runs Books-A-Million and moved to Florida. But my sensibilities and my skin were too delicate to live there, so I uprooted again after only a few months.
When I ran my local store, I did all of the order processing and inventory and made connections at some distributors. The owners of Southern Hobby Supply reached out and wanted to bring me on board to specialize in stock for RPGs and help the boardgame buyer since the number of products was skyrocketing. I brought on several RPG lines, maintained inventory for them over five warehouses across the US and made sure that our retailers were aware of new products, upcoming releases, programs, policies, etc. for those publishers.
After almost two years it was time for me to move on and get a taste on a different side, so I moved to California and started to work in marketing for Upper Deck. The Entertainment side of Upper Deck is a large place that includes board games, trading cards, fine art, and now apps – it was much bigger and much different than I expected, but it taught me a lot and allowed me to work with some fantastic licensors (read: Marvel).
But that job didn’t allow me to pursue my true joy and passion; writing and creating. So I parted ways with them and joined the team at Green Ronin. I’ve learned a lot from them, and hopefully, they’ve learned a lot from me. I’ve gotten the opportunity to write and create with them and have done several jobs on various AGE books already (including work for Modern AGE, The Expanse, and Blue Rose) and also produced some short fiction set in Aldea.
Now it’s time for the next step. This Patreon will let me flex my creativity in a different way. I’ll be offering three different things on this Patreon for three different reasons. The first will be one-page RPGs similar to Everyone is John and Honey Heist; a set of rules to be played in a single night for people to enjoy in my narrative-meets-mechanism brand. The second will be short story fiction; depending on the mood, this will be fantasy, science fiction, etc. between 1000 and 3000 words. The final thing I’ll be offering is a column of behind the scenes industry advice. This will vary from month-to-month but will primarily be pieces of information and advice that new or small publishers might find beneficial and musings about my experience in the three tiers.
All of this will be done for you, my fans and supporters, to help pay my bills and keep the creative juices flowing, so I don’t have to worry so much about how much money is going out.