Cheesy Shelter is a Game #FridayRecommends

Friday RecommendsWhy I wanted to know this is lost in the mists of last week–yeah, I suffer from advanced CRS (Can’t Remember Shit). But, for some unknown reason, I wanted, to a serious degree, to know how to make cheese from powdered milk.

I know, right?

So I went (of course) to YouTube and I found this guy. I like the way he thinks. He’s like, All recipes include a little alcohol, so today I’m drinkin’ this. But I’ll tell you what: It would take more than a little alcohol to get me to do anything that time-intensive and labor-intensive. Sorry, Mudbrooker. I enjoyed your video, though.


Christa Swartz of Prepsteaders had a more doable one. I might do this one some time, just for fun. Prepsteaders are people who prep for the coming catastrophe by laying in supplies and learning pioneer homesteading skillz. What coming catastrophe? Whatever coming catastrophe. When I was young, it was nuclear war. Nowadays, it’s … well … nuclear war, I guess. Her video is long as hell, but I needed a vacation, so I watched it.

Diana Hurwitz does books and blog posts called Story Building Blocks. She did a post called Game On! World Building: Shelter that I just love. It doesn’t tell you what to do; it suggest the sorts of things you need to think about. I love stuff like this. If you read fantasy, you’ve come across books that are either very vague on details or were filmed in the author’s head on the set of Tolkien’s Middle Earth. Hurwitz’ list of questions is a great place to start, if you want to make your fantasy–or your any kind of book or story–your own.

Any time I hear or read or think the phrase “Game On,” I immediately think of The Guild. After you see this video, so will you.

You’re welcome.

A WRITING PROMPT FROM ME TO YOU: Pick any three questions from Hurwitz’ list and create answers to them.


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I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Cheesy Shelter is a Game #FridayRecommends

  1. Mitchell Allen

    August 3, 2018 at 8:40am

    Marian, I just love sites like Diana Hurwitz’ because they speak to the programmer in me. Remember the Seventh Sanctum? That’s pretty much the automated version of SBB đŸ™‚

    One of these days, I going to tie all the elements of gaming, programming and story-telling into…something. LOL I’m not talking about build-your-own adventure books or console games with contrived backstory. I think the world is ready for a programming language that engages the reader the way Hollywood must think existing programming languages already do (think: green squiggles in The Matrix.)



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  2. Mitchell Allen

    August 3, 2018 at 10:33am

    I was trying to find a link to our conversation on your blog. Seventh Sanctum is a collection of random generators, such as names, locales and prompts. SBB is Diana Hurwitz’ Story Building Blocks series of books.



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  3. Deborah

    August 3, 2018 at 10:27pm

    I totally get the ” be ready for the apocalypse” thing. I live in Earthquake country, so I do have water, food, and stuff cause…it’s gonna happen. 1989 made me a believer in “THE BIG ONE!” I got my shit together after that one. I even have perfume, and cologne for He-Man and shaving stuff, cause I’ve camped, and backpacked; a bath, and shave, and something that makes you smell nice can lift your mood, give you hope, and renew your faith a whole lot!

    I have powdered milk in storage, so will check out some videos on how to make cheese cause I love cheese! You won’t believe this but tonight my dinner is a good sized wedge of Fontina cheese, club crackers, and some slices of Genoa salami! With some Merlot too. It was gonna be a lite night, but it’s Friday so, I added wine and shot that lite calorie night to, well, you know where. ?

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 4, 2018 at 12:52pm

      Oh, your dinner sounds SO GOOD! We’ve been known to dine on cheese, crackers, and summer sausage.

      Around here in the Midwest, we’re all like, “How can anybody live in earthquake country? Why don’t they move?” And people in California are like, “Hello, New Madrid Fault? Tornado Alley?” And we’re like, “…Oh, yeah.”
      Marian Allen recently posted..Tipper Solves the Mystery #Caturday

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