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Meet the Team

Lead Writer & Random Gadabout: Kimberly Pauley is the award winning author of books for teens, tweens, and the young at heart. Her first two books were for Wizards of the Coast, which also started her on a decades long love affair with roleplaying games.

Fascinated…nay, obsessed, with fairy tales and folk tales, she has made a career out of writing quirky fantasy in not just novel form but also in 5E and independent TTRPG campaign settings. Most notably, she was a writer for Ghostfire Gaming/Eldermancy’s The Seeker’s Guide to Twisted Taverns and The Sunken Isles, where she was happy to be able to use her years of random research knowledge to help create not only many of the campaign locations, but new playable races. Other projects include work on Outland Entertainment’s Nightfell, Blackguards, and Tiny Dungeon.

All of that working on TTRPG projects for others gave her an itch to work on a project that had been simmering in the back of her mind for years, and The Tales were True was born. Combining her love of folk tales, role playing games, and the wish to encourage people of all ages to take up the ttrpg hobby (and maybe learn some intriguing things from within the familiar comfort of oft told tales), she hopes The Tales were True will bring magic to the lives of everyone it touches.

You can find out more about her Young Adult and Middle Grade titles at her official author website or find her on Twitter at @KimberlyRPauley.

Writer & Resident Bard: Amie Rose Rotruck has been an avid lover of fantasy her entire life. Major influences on her life and writing are the Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander, The Last Unicorn by Peter Beagle, and the movie The Dark Crystal, all of which she encountered as a child and were very formative of her tastes in fiction.

Her interest in fantastic children’s literature lead her to study it first at the University of Pittsburgh as an undergrad and getting a self-designed B.A. in Fiction Writing for Children, then at Hollins University, earning both an MA and MFA in Children’s Literature.

Amie’s first major writing job was a middle-grade novel, Bronze Dragon Codex, set in the Dragonlance world. As a long-time Dragonlance fan, this was an amazing writing experience and was her first taste in working in a shared world. She also penned the Young Wizards Handbook: How to Track a Vampire, Track a Zombie, and Other Hands-On Activities for Monster-Hunters, a mix of gaming tips, imaginative play ideas, and crafts that was exactly the book she would have wanted in her hands as a child. A writing hiatus followed the birth of her child and some other major life events, but in 2017 she returned to the writing world with a contribution to the RPG Tiny Dungeon: Hatchling Edition. Contribution to other RPGs followed, including Twisted Taverns and the upcoming Sunken Isles. She also has published numerous book reviews, scholarly articles, and strange Facebook posts about her pets.

Amie currently lives with her family in Maryland. Her hobbies include managing an electronics control company, home schooling her offspring, crocheting, and obsessively building Lego sets.

Kimberly’s Note: I’ve known Amie since we met while working on separate projects for Wizards of the Coast and always enjoy working with her — we may be slightly crazy separately, but we come up with outstanding outlandishness together.

Lead Artist & Boardgame Hoarder: Ellie Jordan is a UK based illustrator with a passion for folklore, nature and a good cup of coffee.

Ellie has illustrated children’s books, drawn countless ttrpg characters and brought many magical scenes to life with her art.

After trying D&D for the first time in 2021, Ellie found a group of lovely folks on twitter who love magic and monsters as much as she does and has never looked back. Ellie lives in the picturesque English countryside with her husband, dog and an ever expanding collection of boardgames and dice. It’s not getting out of hand at all.

You can find Ellie on Twitter at @EllieJayArt or her official website:

Kimberly’s Note: I chose Ellie as the lead artist because I think she really and truly shares in my obsession with folk tales and because her art is obviously influenced by living and working in the English countryside, something very important to this project.

Monster Designer. Ben Sandfelder is an indie game developer with one foot in digital games, and the other in the tabletop roleplaying world.

Ben Sandfelder is a man of many hats – game developer, freelance writer, and an activist in the Atlanta area. Storytelling is at the heart of everything he touches, and the lessons he learns in one medium, he brings into the others.            

He has contributed to several 5th Edition publications, including Twisted Taverns with Kimberly and Amie. However, Ben’s proudest achievement was Kickstarting and publishing Lightning War – an original TTRPG about fighting fascism in a fantasy world’s World War II.                          

You can find Ben on Twitter as @BenSandfelder, or see more of his work on his website:

Kimberly’s Note: I chose Ben because, having worked with him before, I really liked his thought process behind how he puts monsters together–he puts a lot of thought into them, not just in how they operate, but in how they will interact in the world.

Layout Artist & Resident Fey. David Markiwsky is a writer, artist, graphic designer and game designer in Canada who is obsessed with everything fey and horror.

He has contributed to over 30 different TTRPG supplements, served as project manager and art director for Uncaged: Goddesses, and designed Utopia, a neo-futuristic solo RPG. You can find him on Twitter @DavidMarkiwsky and view some of his art at

Kimberly’s Note: I chose David to be the layout & graphic designer for this project because of his work on Uncaged: Goddesses (truly gorgeous!) as well as his own particular art style (a ginormous toad-beast may very well pop up in a chapter of The Tales were True…)