Noisms made a post listing Things Role Playing Bloggers Tend Not To Write About - TRPBTNTWAs. I'm going to use this as a way to get a quick post in without taking a lot of time away from other projects I'm working on today, like the Iron Chef Adventure Challenge and casting a bunch of blocks with my Hirst Arts molds. I'll have more about those projects either later tonight or tomorrow.
1. Book Binding.
I like books. I especially like well-made, hardbound books with solid, stitched and glued signatures, heavy facing paper, and well-made covers. Unfortunately, there aren't too many gaming books that measure up anymore. Most gaming books now are glued instead of sewn and just don't hold up to heavy use at the table. The first offender I remember in this regard was Unearthed Arcana, but most of the 2E Complete books had the same failing. The glue was too rigid and not deep enough to hold the pages, so they fell out after a short time. I still have my much-taped copy of UA, but it doesn't see a lot of time off the shelf anymore.
The game books I use the most now are either electronic or copies of old-school D&D that have survived the ages. The one exception is my copy of Labyrinth Lord, including the Advanced Edition Companion and Original Edition Characters, that I printed two pages per sheet and had spiral-bound at FedEx. The book is slightly larger than my index-sized OD&D books, and it lays flat, opens easily, and was fairly cheap to make.
In the future, I'd like to see more books professionally done like that - heavy pages, spiral binding, solid plastic covers.
2. "Doing a voice."
Nope, not really. I do it occasinally when I'm reading aloud or acting, but not when I'm roleplaying.
I generally let people take breaks as they need. Ocassionally I've had groups that wanted to take regular breaks every couple hours, but generally I don't schedule them. They occur naturally during play. If someone's character isn't involved, they can take a break.
It all depends on the game. Normally I use enough description to get the players into it without trying to sound like a Robert Jordan novel.
5. Where do you strike the balance between "doing what your character would do" and "acting like a dickhead"?
I strictly enforce the Wheaton law in my games. If most of the people think you're being a dick, you are, regardless of whether it's "in character." Fortunately, most of the people I game with don't need to be reminded of this. The ones I continue to game with most not only don't need to be reminded, they enforce the Wheaton law on their own and happily vote offenders off my gaming island.
6. PC-on-PC violence.
I don't have a problem with it, but everybody has to agree to it. Generally, my players have threatened it a lot more than done it. Still, as long as everyone is having fun and nobody is violating the Wheaton law, we're good.
7. How do you explain role-playing to non-role-players?
I don't. I'm not really a good gaming evangelist.
8. Alcohol at the table?
I'm ok with it if everybody can handle it. I don't drink at the table myself, because I'm dumb, belligerent, and absent-minded enough without it. Why make it worse for myself?
9. What's acceptable to do to a PC whose player is absent?
Anything the player agreed to when they started playing the character. Normally that means they just sit out or become a non-participating zombie for the session. Except the cleric. Clerics are heal-bots that deserve whatever happens to them. (Sorry, Dave!)