Today is the final day that you can preorder Phil Vecchione’s Never Unprepared: The Complete Game Master’s Guide to Session Prep. Preorders include immediate access to the PDF edition.
If you’re not sure you need a book about prep — to our knowledge, the first-ever book entirely about prep — check out the free 16-page PDF preview or the seven excellent reviews the book has received. And if you have any questions about it, don’t hesitate to ask in the comments!
The book is at the printer, and I expect the first print run to arrive on my doorstep in the first half of July. When it arrives, my wife and I will work together to get all preorder copies packed, labelled, and shipped out to you as soon as we can. It usually takes us a hectic evening or two.
What’s the timeline after preorders close?
Here’s what’ll happen next:
- Within the next few days, I’ll add the standalone PDF edition ($9.95) to the Engine Publishing store and DriveThruRPG. We include the PDF free with every print copy of the book, but if you’re a PDF-only GM this is the version you’ve been waiting for!
- After preorders have all been shipped, I’ll add the print edition to the Engine Publishing store. This should happen in mid-late July, but depends on when I get books and how quickly I can turn preorders around.
- Never Unprepared will be available at the Studio 2 Publishing booth at GenCon. They’re bringing 132 copies; I don’t know their booth number yet. If you buy it at the con, our PDF guarantee makes it easy for you to get your free PDF version after the fact.
- Sometime later this year — my guess is between October and December — Never Unprepared should be available in retail stores. I have no control over this process, and it’s pretty variable. If you want to buy it from your FLGS, let them know and they’ll be able to order you a copy.
My thanks to everyone who has preordered Never Unprepared! You’ve helped to make this our best book launch ever in terms of number of copies sold, which is totally, totally awesome.
If you’ve been waiting to preorder, don’t wait too much longer! The store is open.
Now, I’ve already gone ahead and ordered the book (because Eureka and Masks were great, so I didn’t hesitate), but after having scanned the pdf a bit I have come upon a question: How well does Never Unprepared work for someone who doesn’t have a solid schedule for their daily life? I’ve noticed the book outlines time management and structure a lot, but as a college student with players who are either students or unemployed I don’t really have that firm of a schedule to hang up my games (or my prep) around.
Would you say this limits the usefulness of this book, or is it equally valuable for someone in my situation? Is it necessary to be able to plan ahead time-wise (prepare to prep, so to speak) for the advice to work?
@Riklurt – The short answer is yes, I think the book will still help you prep even if you can’t really plan your prep.
Phil can give you a more complete answer (I’ve pinged him), but the building blocks of prep that are addressed in NU are fundamental enough that they apply whether or not you have a consistent schedule you can plan around. For example, you need to brainstorm whether you know your next session is a week out, sometime in the next month, or an hour from now.
I’d say that to take maximum advantage of everything in the book, you need to be able to plan at least a little bit — although situations where you have no time, or things come up that eat into your time, are also addressed.
Even with a chaotic schedule, one option is always available: Don’t run the game until you’re ready. Use NU to help you figure out how much time each phase of prep takes, plan them in as best you can, and then run the game whenever you’re done with prep.
@Riklurt — While time management is one facet of the book, it is jut one chapter, and will resonate more with people who have more constrained schedules. If Time is not a limitation for you, then that chapter may not be as useful for you at this time..but I suspect later that you might find it useful.
The rest of the book is focused on guiding you to develop a process where you hone your creative process, streamline the work you do to prep a session, and come up with a process and a product (your notes) that make you a more prepared GM. A prepared GM is one that is comfortable running what they prepped and equally comfortable going “off road” when needed, because they know where they are going.
That was the long answer.
The short answer is that Yes, I think that the book will still be of great use to you even if Time is not a constraint or something you can pin down. 😉
Thanks. I was pretty sure it’d still be useful, but the first pages I scanned seemed very focused on time management more than anything else, so I got a little worried there for a second.