Ron Francesangelo was born into a home of fantasy and adventure. His mother, a die hard Star Wars fan, tells him he saw the premiere of the first film since she was pregnant with him when she saw it in 1977. “I always get a kick out of her telling me that.”
Much of Ron’s youth was spent creating elaborate stories and immersive games for his friends. He re-emphasizes how much of an influence his mother had on him. “She’s the one who sent me on my first treasure hunt. When I was a kid, she made all these clue cards and hid them around the house, and I had to follow each one’s clues to find the next. It was awesome!”
Ron eventually attended art school where he studied computer animation. “I wanted to work in film, but these stories kept talking to me.” Then, just before graduation, he accidentally registered for an advanced creative writing course. The class took a vote, and decided he could stay. That class gave him the courage to take himself seriously as a writer. “It’s something I’ve always done (tell stories), but didn’t have the courage to actually call myself a ‘writer.’
So he wrote. A lot. And he rewrote (and rewrote and rewrote) until he finished his first novel, an adventure fantasy for children age twelve and up – and especially for those who are children at heart. Now, he’s in the process of seeking literary representation.
Another passion for Ron is designing games. “They’re like stories, but ones people have to unwrap themselves. It’s like being IN a story. I just wish I could experience my games like first-time players do.” He laughs. “I already know what happens.”
His Etsy shop, Legend: A Game of Maps, is Ron’s first foray into the world of online selling, but not his first business venture. He credits his father, who is successfully self employed, for his entrepreneurial spirit. At Ron’s shop, he sells his first two story-games in a series of seven. He calls them ‘tabletop treasure hunts,’ and handcrafts each from true-to-life materials so that players feel like they’re handling centuries-old artifacts. “I want them to be immersive,” he says. “In my games, players become part of the story.”
To read more (and become part of Ron’s stories), you can visit his Etsy shop here!