Next in our staff spotlight series is our COO, entire HR department, and resident responsible person: Maria Perry!

Maria has only been at Dice Envy for two years, but she’s been an important part of turning this little-company-that-can into a smoother running ship. We literally didn't have running water until she showed up. Seriously.

Maria takes care of all of the icky paperwork, develops copy for our dice, and leads the charge on our partnership and collaboration initiatives. It's fair to say we'd be lost without her!

Portrait of Awesomeness by Alena Lane

So Maria, first of all, how did you end up at Dice Envy?

During the pandemic I injured my leg, so I was extra stuck inside, very isolated, and started doing the thing a lot of folks were where I was looking up old friends, reconnecting, all that good stuff. My friend Aabria (who I knew from a shadow cast back when I first moved to LA) was working at Dice Envy, and she tweeted something about their Twitch streams. I popped in, won the first impromptu dice naming competition, and just kept coming back to do more of them (with an honestly pretty unfair success rate).

This was around the time Aabria was gearing up and getting super busy, let’s say the spring before the Summer of Aabria. She wasn’t able to put as much time into doing dice copy and marketing any more, so I guess Dave asked her if I was a good candidate to fill in for her. I got a job offer, did a Zoom interview, and, once the vaccines were all taken care of and we reopened in-office work, I started officially at Dice Envy.

When was that in the course of Dice Envy’s progress as a company? Were you part of the original crew that started in Dave’s apartment?

No, I definitely came along much later than that! They had moved out of the apartment, into a room they were renting from a church, and then out of the church and into our current office before I started. But it was early days for the new location– when I started working, it sort of looked like a prison mailing room– no kitchen, about half as many shelves as we needed, lots of piles of boxes only loosely organized.

We’ve come a long way!

The entirety of the old office - yes, it was that small.

What made you want to get into the world of dice?

I’ve been playing TTRPGs off and on for years– a side effect of my time working renaissance faires for a living– and had been in a long running home game of D&D for about five years before I started harassing the twins on Twitch. I was on the latest season of Tempus Multae, from Pseudonym Social, where I played Millie. But I will say I didn’t become much of a dice goblin until I started winning free dice from Dice Envy by naming them. It was a very steep downhill slope, though, and I ended up realizing I needed to take the dice job so I could quit spending all the money from my other work on dice.

What sort of products have you had a hand in developing, and is there anything fun on the horizon?

I think my first really big project was the Advent Calendars, which we started last year. It was a sort of last-minute idea, and our first time doing it, so the version coming out this year will hopefully be more developed and even better– we’re working on getting stuff ordered now, so keep an eye out for those come the holiday season!

And! We recently did our first big collaboration, with "Adventure is Nigh!", which was my first chance to do something I want to get Dice Envy doing more of, which is partnering with and working with creators in the space to make unique and custom dice sets for their merch lines.

The first Dice Envy Advent Calendar. So much fun!

As far as upcoming stuff, there are a couple of things– we’re playing a lot with the idea of what sorts of fun packaging we can create that will add value and be thematically appropriate for some of our sets. I’ve also done a fair amount of idea pitching to our designers, Dylan and Rach, for themes for new metal sets, but that might take a minute before they come out– that’s a long process.

What does the average day in the Dice Envy Office look like for you?

I go in at the same time as everyone else, and help fulfill online orders. I know how to run the whole system on my own (and have had to once or twice thanks to scheduling, illness, or conventions) but usually it’s a team of 3 or 4 of us doing fulfillment.

Ian usually does the pulling (grabbing all of the stuff for an order), and then he sets it up for us to package everything in boxes to go to the post office.

After that’s sorted, several hours later, I grab one of every new dice set that has come in, to take home for naming and copy writing.

I’m also very much the designated adult in the office, so I take care of filing our taxes and keeping us up to date with our business requirements. Not the most glamorous or exciting work, but someone’s gotta do it.

From there, it’s a lot of emails. I’m the point-person for client liaisons, and I work with our suppliers from time to time on orders. I’m also the person in charge of scheduling deliveries and making sure someone is there when shipments of new dice arrive. Again, not as much fantasy and whimsy as one might like in a D&D-based job, but I play to my strengths.

I also do some community outreach stuff, attend events when I can (separate from conventions, which isn’t my department), and I often carry a big metal briefcase to give out free sets of dice when it’s appropriate.

Free dice!? Where?!

You might see me around at various Los Angeles D&D events, and I’m often at Guildhall in Burbank, which is sort of my socializing home base. Be sure and say hi if you happen to cross paths with me! Even if I don’t have giveaways on me, I’m always happy to meet new folks.

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