In preparation for the aforementioned Dogs in the Vineyard game, I've been re-reading the game. Actually reading the second edition for the first time. Vincent has said there's not much new, text-wise, but what is added is good stuff. One thing that really struck me, is in the GMing Conflicts section:
As GM, you should always follow your group's lead. A big part of your job in the first couple of sessions is to figure out, mostly by observation, your group's standards for legit Raises and Sees, invoking traits, valid stakes, using ceremony, the supernatural, and so on.
However, the thing to observe in play isn't what the group's doing, but instead who's dissatisfied with what the group's doing. The player who frowns and uses withdrawing body language in response to someone else's Raise, or who's like "that's weak" when someone reaches for dice -- that's the player whose lead to follow. Everyone's Raises etc. should come to meet the most critical player's standards. As the GM, it's your special responsibility to pay attention, figure out what those standards are, and to press the group to live up to them.
Wow. That second part is powerful stuff. I wonder if it is something I'll be able to do? It seems so obvious a thing when you read it...
BTW, Ed, Vincent, AWESOME art!