by Don Bosco

NOTE: This was first published on The Brilliant Foundation

PIC 1.

In 2011, my two sons started to really enjoy reading books. They had many questions about how stories work, how books are made, and why they liked some books more than others. I designed some story-based activities at home to explore all this. This photo shows one of the early things we did, a DIY booklet series featuring an original story, Ghostly. It’s a mashup of all the stuff that my sons were interested in at that time — fantasy elements, origami, jokes, adventures, etc. We gave this out…


NOTE: Remember to visit my Gamebook Academy for free lessons on how to write your own gamebooks! Click here.

What a lovely surprise, there’s actually an International Gamebook Day for us gamebook geeks. It’s on 27 August. Yay!

My kids really love playing games together: computer games, board games, card games, everything. So back in 2017 I was inspired to turn our story ideas into interactive fiction, aka gamebooks, to see if we could create something special together. And it’s been a real adventure.


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

My production editor, Colleen Alberti, and I (left) taking a break on a press check in 2019.

Please introduce yourself!

This September I will celebrate fifteen years of work with Chooseco on the Choose Your Own Adventure series. I have a degree in creative writing and started with Chooseco the fall after I graduated from college, so it’s fair to say that thus far, support of this publishing program has been my life’s work.

My role at Chooseco is the Vice…


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

Please introduce yourself!
I’m Jerry! I’m best known for my design and development of alt ctrl, or alternative controller, games and experiences. I’ve been a creative technologist as long as I can remember and have a deep love for narrative and world building. My current professional work includes narrative design, technical producing, alt ctrl prototyping, and my current contract is doing escape room design and implementation.

Do tell us about your Choosatron. The Choosatron journey started nearly eight years ago. I…


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

An introduction, please.

My name is Rana Tahir, I’m a poet, educator, and writer. A little bit about me: I’m originally from Pakistan but grew up in Kuwait. I’m a Kundiman Poetry Fellow and author of two books. My most recent book is a gamebook titled Choose Your Own Adventure Spies: Noor Inayat Khan.

Tell us about your gamebook Choose Your Own Adventure Spies: Noor Inayat Khan.

Choose Your Own Adventure Spies: Noor Inayat Khan puts readers in the shoes of…


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

Nice photo! Please introduce yourself.
My name is Stuart Lloyd. I have been reading gamebooks since 1990 and writing them since 2008. In 2010, I began a blog on gamebooks with the aim of analysing them to improve my own writing. I post there very rarely now as I have lots more real life responsibilities but my friend Peter Agapov also posts there. Almost all of my work is available for free or Pay-What-You-Want here. …


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

Welcome back to the Gamebook Academy! I hope you’ve been trying out the gamebook writing tips in our earlier lessons. In this post, we’ll look at some ways you can create an amazing imaginary world for your gamebook. These ideas can make your gamebook so memorable, your readers will be dying to read your next work, so that they can visit and enjoy your gameworld all over again. Ready? Here we go.

LESSON 4: How to create an amazing gameworld for…


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

Welcome back! In the first lesson, we learnt how to make a really simple gamebook with just three sections. In the second lesson, we looked at how you can combine different kinds of choices to make your gamebook longer.

This lesson will give you ideas for different genres of gamebooks, so you can create a wider variety of gamebooks and impress your friends.

Now switch your brain to Gamebook Writing Mode and let’s get going!

LESSON 3: Different types of gamebook…


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

In the last lesson, we learnt how to make a really simple gamebook, with just three sections.

Once you get the hang of this process, it’s easy to keep adding sections, until you have a much longer gamebook.

Your gamebook can have 10 sections, or 200 sections, or 600, sections, it doesn’t matter, as long as you’re enjoying yourself as you write, and your reader has fun reading and making decisions at the end of each section.

In this lesson, we’ll…


NOTE: This is part of a series that explains how to create your own simple gamebooks. More articles here.

Back when I tried to make my first gamebook, The Secret of the Chatter Blocks, I didn’t even know how to get started. There were lots of helpful tips online, but they seemed to be written for more experienced gamebook creators. At that point, I didn’t want to know how to make a perfect and elaborate gamebook, I just wanted to make a really simple gamebook, with my two sons, just for the fun and learning experience. …

Super Cool Books

DON BOSCO is the author of the LAST KID RUNNING interactive fiction series, published by Penguin Random House. http://www.SuperCoolBooks.com

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