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  1. #1

    Advice wanted on starting/running a kinship

    Hi all! I've read the info in the Lorebook and wiki, and understand how kinships work technically.

    What I'd like is practical tips and anecdotes from people who have experience managing a kinship or being an officer in one. I plan to start a kinship soon, and want to get an idea of what to prepare for.

    In brief, here's the kinship I envision:
    - Emphasis on low-level play (level 50 and below), including "level-frozen" characters once the XP disabler becomes available
    - Casual play/participation, welcoming to new LOTRO players
    - Family-friendly, no drama

    Whether you have a one-liner or an essay to share; I'll be happy to read it all. "Forewarned is forearmed."

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2


    Take a look at our website to see how we run ourselves. Take what you find useful to apply to your formation of a kinship. We stress huntering (questing) buddies for those coming up. Try to get the membership to take part in leadership for group and Deeds, so you and your officers will not burn out. Set a goal (like I said look at our site and our Code) direction of the kinship help you membership feel a part of it and a family. If i can be more of help just send me a PM.

    In Middle Earth from Beta 2

  3. #3

    I am Meadowlarke Sweetweed, chief if the Bounders of the Shire - Addernotch Station. Our station was founded 5 years ago cone January, and I'm its fifth chief, but I have been running it for 4 years.

    My interests are a lot like yours. We've been waiting for the negotiations with the trainings quilds to bear fruit. ((the XP Disabler)). In fact, I think any would say that I have been the most active advocates of change. Now that these changes seem imminent, I hope to use them in ways you described.

    Anyways, iffen you are thinking of being a chief my first recommendation is to take a good look in a mirror and decide iffen this is what you want. It's a bit of work. You'll have to commit yourself to working on a whole lot of work to do. If it is a chore, you'll put it off and your kinship will fade away. If it's a pleasure, your kinship will grow.

    I am called the chief, but as point of fact I work for everybody else in the kinship. I find out what they want, then it's my job to make it happen. I find out what they want at our weekly inspections. Then it's a matter of spreading the word and organizing and seeing to it that it actually happens.

    Communicate lots. I send out Bounder Bulletins (kinship mail), use the message of the day, maintain the bulletin boards (Bounders of the Shire web site), and remind people, "The Volunteer Fireworks Brigade will be meeting at Mustering Hill after dark!"

    You need to keep an eye out for quality officers. I have the best crew possible. A good officer is somebody who has his or her own interests. Falibrand runs the Green Hill Music Society. Daffodilia organizes Chicken Month (August) and Mushroom Day (October 15). Gennyrose took over the weekly turtle hunts when I couldn't lead them then went organizing expeditions to the dark corners of Moria. Lyonardo runs the Bounder Museum of Antiquities. Perlina is a playwriter who draws her actions from the Bounders and their friends.

    And we have our book clubs (groups roleplaying their way through the book quests).

    A third thing I would recommend is to make sure to draw the members you want. I suspect a lot of leaders are so thirsty for members that they accept nearly anybody who they can get. This means bringing in people who just don't fit together. Technically, it's not the fault of charcoal, saltpeter, or sulphur that they don't get along. But they are best kept separate or mixed very carefully.

    Each Bounder gets interviewed so as they know just what they are getting into - to make sure it is what they want. Don't mind those who learn these facts and go elsewhere - you are both likely better off.

    In our case, we recognize that some of our good friends don't fit the kinship. Our kin uses a private user channel for friends who are not kin members. Our kin has a respectable number of members, but our extended family is precious to us.

    That's some ideas that may be of help
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group on Landroval currently capped at Level 48 working on Volume I Book XV (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Sort of related... I typed this up in a different post (hope it helps) ((just my opinions))


  5. #5
    Everyone, thank you very much for your responses. It's giving me a good helping of food for thought.

    If anyone else wants to chime in, I'm still here and reading.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    While I don't run a casual kinship (we're raid-focused), I did transform the kin from a more casual kinship into a more "hardcore" one. It wasn't easy and I definitely gained some haters along the way, but I stayed true to my "vision" and ultimately ended up in a better place.

    Realize first that not everyone will fit. I have found that an effective kin application can usually weed-out a lot of people who aren't of like mind. The last thing I want is drama in my kin or someone who's only out for their best interests. Those types of people are parasites and have no place in a group of folks working toward common goals.

    Set clear objectives - purposes - for the existence of the kin. People need their individual needs met within the larger (and greater) context of the kin. They need to know why they're there. These objectives/purposes trump all else and will eventually turn some people off. You can't sweat it - that's just how it goes. If someone wants to leave, it's not because you're failing - it's because your kin is not for them - or their needs have changed. Not your fault.

    When the larger scope of the kin is not of immediate concern, fairness in all things is the best policy. Favoritism is pretty easy to spot and sometimes it's hard to suppress. Mature people will realize you can't favor them, even if they make a larger impact on the kin than most others. People need to put into the kin what they are willing to put in for the greater good - not for special perks and benefits.

    After 4 years, I have found myself "leading" a kin that basically runs itself. If you surround yourself with good and decent people, the rest just falls into place. I like to joke that I only have leads because I know I'll never rage quit and disband the kin...

    Ultimately, it's become a very satisfying experience. Not that there aren't ups and downs...

    The NOLDOR of Arkenstone



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