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Queer strife amid the collapse. Jewish fantasy of the shtetl. Two beginner-friendly roleplaying games of belonging outside belonging.
Queer strife amid the collapse. Jewish fantasy of the shtetl. Two beginner-friendly roleplaying games of belonging outside belonging.
1,705 backers pledged CA$ 62,355 to help bring this project to life.

More Outliers Appear!

Posted by Avery Alder (Creator)

Friends, supporters, we've just unlocked another stretch goal. That means Jeeyon Shim and Joshua A.C. Newman's contributions have made their way into The Outliers zine, and another pair of contributors can be spotted upon our horizon!

Let's take a look at who has made it to our ragtag enclave, our humble shtetl—whichever it is—and then announce our next stretch goal.

Who's In

Caren Gussoff Sumption is a science fiction writer, peer counselor, and tarot reader based in Seattle, WA, of Kaderash (Romani), Russian, Ashkenazi Jewish, and German ancestry. Her latest books are Three Songs for Roxy and The Birthday Problem. Her website is

For Dream Apart, Caren will write some thoughts on Romani elements of character and setting.

Brandon O’Brien is a Black queer speculative fiction writer, performance poet, teaching artist and roleplaying game designer from Trinidad and Tobago. He is a mentee of Avery Alder’s Emerging Designers Mentorship Program, currently working on a game about music, magic, community and finding one’s voice. He believes that art and art-making, including play, is revolutionary, and his writing and design insists that the speculative is a lens through which we can reevaluate our personal and political realities, challenge hostile histories, and explore uncharted futures. In his writing, reading, design and play, he adores surreal circumstances, bittersweet and vulnerable relationships, and intriguing mysteries.

Brandon’s piece will be about the emergence of queer enclaves from a Black and Caribbean context. He’ll also be submitting a few poems intersecting with queerness, Afro-Caribbeanness, and collapse.

Joshua A.C. Newman is a game designer and publisher best known for the roleplaying game Shock: Social Science Fiction, for the Mobile Frame Zero series of LEGO-constructed giant robot wargames, and for the Bronze Age Sword & Sorcery RPG The Bloody-Handed Name of Bronze. His games, art, writing, and fascinatingly intolerable electronic noises can be found at and

He is going to write us up one hell of a iconoclastic, pistol-toting, balalaika-jamming, ecstatic klezmer for Dream Apart.

Jeeyon Shim is a nonwhite, queer roleplaying game designer from both coasts of the continental United States. She's lived in Oakland, California for about a decade and the greater Bay area for even longer, where she teaches wilderness survival skills and land connection through LARPing. Her work focuses on bridging the alienation modern urban people often feel from the land and their roots, examining the overlap of race dynamics in land access and LARP access, and immersion in the sacred aspects of (re)connecting with the land.

Her piece will be about strategies for survival in various biomes once you and your queer community have fled the city for the haven and difficult bounty of the outdoors.

Our Next Stretch Goal: Ellen Kushner and David Collins

One we reach $50,000 (Canadian), we'll be adding two fantastic new contributors to The Outliers zine. Very excited to introduce you to...

Ellen Kushner unites her talents and insights as a writer, performer, and cultural maven in one sleek package: she is the author of acclaimed works of literary fantasy (including the queer cult classic Swordspoint and the World Fantasy Award winning Thomas the Rhymer), an award-winning audio book narrator and stage performer, the creator and former host of public radio’s national series Sound & Spirit, and a popular teacher and lecturer.

Ellen will invent a character for Dream Apart; it’s what she does best.

David (DC) Collins is a game designer from the San Francisco Bay Area in Northern California. He’s produced several Dungeons and Dragons supplements, but recently released his first Forged in the Dark game, Mutants in the Night. His main goal is to create games that represent a diverse range of fantasies beyond the eurocentric focus of the roleplaying genre.

DC’s piece is going to be focused on how mutation & marginalization intersect at the edge of social collapse. What parallels exist between the world of fantasy mutation and the marginalized struggles within society?

Spread the word! Take a look at some of the special rewards we've added since the campaign started, including micro-dedications to appear in this upcoming zine. We're so excited about the momentum behind this campaign.

Sophie Lagace, sakari lindhen, and 17 more people like this update.


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    1. Benjamin Rosenbaum Collaborator on

      @Lisa, I know, right? :-)

    2. Lisa Padol

      You got Ellen Kushner? Wow!

    3. Avery Alder 2-time creator on

      @Lex, they are essays, inspiration, poetry, fragments of memoir, character concepts, and the like. There won't be any new mechanical information in this zine. It's about bringing lots of perspectives to the table, and creating a sense of world-building depth.

    4. Lex on

      Will any of the Outliers content introduce mechanical content (light as these games might be), or are they strictly essay and inspiration?

    5. Sophie Lagace

      What a completely awesome roster!