Little Miss Marilynn
IG Name & Race:
Rahima, Sand Elf
Ellethwen, Forest Elf
Doctor Hartmann, Lascarian
Number of Years LARPing: 1.5
Home Game: KANAR
Little Miss Marliynn, a lolita and fashion enthusiast, is also one of the coolest elves I’ve ever met! With a masters degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, she’s been LARPing for almost two years, and she’s completely taken with the role of her character. Marilynn takes pride in designing her own garb and helps others LARP through play to decompress from the various challenges life throws at all of us.
Catherine C. J. Baxley: How did you first learn about LARPing and where was your first event?
Little Miss Marilynn: My husband and I watched an independent film called Unicorn City which is a hilarious movie about a man who needs management experience for a dream job so he decides to create his own LARP. Afterwards we thought, “We NEED to try this!” and so I posted in my local anime conventions facebook group (it seemed right up their alley) and I got a lot of suggestions, most of them for a fantastic LARP called Knights and Nobles and Rogues (KANAR) in Milan, Michigan (check it out – come visit me)!
CCJB: What is the best part about LARPing for you? Worst?
LMM: My favorite part about LARPing is the costuming and makeup. I love being able to express my character’s personality through the clothes and accessories they wear. I want the characters on field to learn a lot about my character just by looking at how they dress and present themselves. Experimenting with different makeup styles for each character is one of my favorite parts as well. The worst aspect about LARPing is experiencing “stage fright.” Right before an event, I always get the butterflies and anxiety. Sometimes I experience social anxiety during the LARP and have to step off and compose myself. I just get a little overwhelmed sometimes but my husband and my friends are really supportive and push me to go back out and role-play my heart out.
CCJB: Tell us about your work as an addictions therapist.
LMM: I recently left my job as an addictions therapist to pursue my dream job of becoming a certified play therapist! I am now working as a home based play therapist which means I work with children in their own homes to process their feelings through play. Oftentimes I use coloring books or Play-doh but lately my kids want to play hide and seek. This really helps me to be able to bond with the children and that trust is absolutely essential when discussing difficult topics like abuse and neglect. It helps that they can see I enjoy playing too!
CCJB: Do you think LARPing could be used with your patients to cope? Would it matter what kind of LARP, either Nordic or IGE; fantasy vs. historical; etc.
LMM: Absolutely! I think it is important for people of all ages to engage in play. It’s therapeutic. It’s easy to get caught up in the stresses of real life and we forget to take care of ourselves. LARPing is a great way to de-stress through dressing up, role-playing, engaging in combat, and leaving your real world issues behind for a weekend.
CCJB: I play a forest elf as well! Why did you choose this race?
LMM: I’ve always been drawn to elves in general, I think they are beautiful and mysterious. They are both elegant and fierce warriors. I chose forest elf over common elf because I like that forest elves aren’t afraid to get down and dirty (literally!). I love being out in nature and I’m not afraid to roll around in the mud.
CCJB: Who is your character and what are their motivations?
LMM: My forest elf is named Ellethwen D’Argentfox and she is the first character I ever made. (Spoilers!) She is from a family of assassins, although she was never interested in the occupation until recent events caused them to be killed in the line of work. She traveled alone while she was mourning, finding comfort in the deer that seemed to follow her. She paints her face with dark brown smudges and white dots as a sign of friendship to the deer. To honor her parents she decided to follow in their footsteps and seek out someone who could train her. I always loved the Dark Brotherhood quests in Skyrim so this was my way of being able to live that out.
CCJB: Why do you create your own garb?
LMM: I create my own garb because I have a particular vision of my character and it’s difficult to find exactly what I have in mind. For my forest elf character this was extremely important because I thought that she would sew her own garments out of the material she had lying around (leaves, trees, moss, etc.) so I did the same. I have so much fun picking out the patterns, altering them, picking out just the right fabric, and (my favorite part) sewing all of the little baubles and lace.
CCJB: What advice can you give to women who are interested in playing a variety of characters from, as you put it, “girly-girls” to “dirty fighting orcs in the mud!?”
LMM: If you’re planning on having multiple characters, have fun with trying out different styles of garb and different makeup. My advice would be to make sure you garb is machine washable (it makes life way easier – trust me!) and don’t be afraid to experiment with makeup! I go full face to every event, it helps my confidence and gets me into character. I’ve put some crazy things on my face from scrap booking gems to real moss. I have to laugh at myself because I regularly go through a craft store and think “Hmm…would this look good on my face?” A good primer, powder, and setting spray will help it stay on through rain, sweat, and…the blood of your enemies.
CCJB: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
LMM: If you would like to contact me for help with character creation, costuming, and/or makeup, follow my public page and message me!
Featured Games: KANAR
To apply for an interview for The Geek Initiative‘s LARPer Profiles, click here!