I’m going to preface this by saying that I agree with a lot of what @ShankMugen has said.
- How do you define a “campaign” when you DM? Is it by in-game time? Number of sessions? Real life time? Levels? Printed books?
I’m curious about the context of this question, but let me first give you my answer. To my mind, a campaign is anything that tries to tell a larger story than a one-shot. Basically what Shank said.
- How do you know when players are ready to commit to a campaign? How do you choose people if too many express interest?
It’s always a crapshoot. Sometimes you get lucky, sometimes you don’t. If I had the luxury of too many people being interested, I personally would choose based on (i) my personal comfort with the individual players; and (ii) their willingness to commit to whatever cadence/schedule would work for me and the rest of the group, in that order. Again, I find myself agreeing with most of what Shank has said.
- Is it better to keep running one-shots and modules until you feel ready to start a campaign or does it make more sense to just add those to a long running story?
Do what feels comfortable to you. I personally started with running a couple of homebrewed one-shots just to see if I would enjoy running games. Especially when you’re starting out, one-shots are lower commitment, and will allow both you and your party to figure out whether this is something you enjoy.
- When you do run a campaign, how much do you (obvi will be different for everyone) tie everything together with worldbuilding? Are all your campaigns in Loorou or do you have your own worlds separately?
I have a regular party who I DMed for before Loorou was conceptualised. I’ve slowly been retconning that campaign into the Loorou setting purely from the perspective of the lore being complimentary, although I’m not making their adventures part of the ur-Loorou canon. I find that for me personally it’s too much mental bandwidth to keep multiple different worlds separated.
- What kinds of sources do you use for inspiration for your games?
I have read vast quantities of fantasy and sci-fi, so I have a ready source of inspiration whenever I need to steal something or just make something new up. I’d really like to use more Indian mythology in my worldbuilding but I just haven’t read enough. That’s a long-term goal for me.
- How do you usually keep track of lore for your worlds? (apart from Loorou which I know is more collaborative)
Before Loorou I mainly used a GoogleDoc, just for accessibility. I’ve also been using GoogleSheets for a campaign tracker, although that is a work in progress. A lot of the lore was just in my head.
- How technically do you play combat in terms of positions and ranges, especially if you don’t always have maps on hand?
I feel like I can’t really answer this question properly because I don’t think I’v e had a situation where I didn’t have a map and minis on hand. One of the most important things for me personally is to have battlemaps ready for combat encounters - to the extent that I have an unnecessarily large collection of maps that I have printed on vinyl for games. I just prefer running combat that I can clearly see in front of me. I can imagine using theater of the mind for one-off combats, but somehow have never been in that situation so far. So yeah, not very useful on this question.
I hope this was helpful. Happy to clarify anything that I didn’t express clearly.