Wednesday, October 5, 2005

What I've Been Up To

One might have thought that finishing my novel would have given me ample opportunity to keep this pathetic excuse for a blog updated with some regularity. One would, of course, have been sorely mistaken.

So what have I been doing?

First, I've got a short story up on the Wizards web site. Called At the Wellspring, it ties in to one of the campaign arcs in Magic of Incarnum, offering one version of how incarnum might come into the world. I'm pretty pleased with it, and I hope you enjoy it. Look for a horror story tied to Heroes of Horrorcoming a little later this month.

Speaking of Magic of Incarnum, the web site had a lot of stuff about it in the last month. Here's a few cool things:
• I answered a bunch of questions from fans, compiled by web editor Bart Carrol, in this interview.
• Andy Collins did a really neat "Use this book tonight" column about it. Andy led the development effort for the book, and gained several ranks in my already very high estimation of him in the process.
• I also did a chat on the Wizards site on 9/9, but I can't find a transcript of it. Can anyone else?

This month's big release for me is Heroes of Horror. I had a blast working with Ari Marmell and C.A. Suleiman on that book—they are two very talented writers. One of the maps from that book is this week's Map-a-Week. Look for another product spotlight as well as the aforementioned fiction, coming soon!

Outside of work, I've been playing surprisingly little World of Warcraft. Instead, sudoku puzzles have been tickling my brain (my favorite sources are here[the hard ones] and here). I read Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, which I enjoyed greatly. I just started The Briar King, which I'm also enjoying. Greg Keyes' Fool Wolf stories in DRAGON Magazine turned me on to his writing. And I made it about halfway through the Firefly series on DVD before Serenity opened last weekend. If you haven't seen Serenity yet, do.

My gaming has been a little sporadic, unfortunately. I played for a while in David Noonan's Eberron campaign set during the Last War, but a weekly game is generally hard to mesh with my family schedule. I've also started playing in Andy Collins's Umber campaign, which is monthly. My own monthly Eberron campaign has been on hiatus for a while thanks to the summer convention season and the arrival of three new babies to different players in the campaign! My schedule is complicated by the fact that I sort of got roped into performing in a production of The Sound of Music this fall, which is eating up many of my Saturdays. I'm playing Franz, "the old butler" (as he says in the movie, though not in the play). My son is playing Kurt, and my wife is choreographing the show, so it's quite the family affair.

Oh, I also worked on another project for the Wizards web site that isn't up yet, so I won't spoil the surprise. But I got to work with Andy and Gwendolyn Kestrel, which was a lot of fun. I'll try to remember to post when it goes up.

At work right now I just started working on a project with Bruce Cordell, which I've never done before. I have tons of respect and admiration for Bruce and his work, so this should be a lot of fun—and a darned fine project when it's all done. 

And speaking of Andy, which I seem to have been doing a lot this entry, I ran an event at this year's GwenCon convention (in Andy and Gwen's house): an approximation of Blackfathom Deeps using the OGL World of Warcraft RPG from Sword & Sorcery. What was weird was my players: I had one WoW player and four people who were basically just looking for a D&D game. So the faithfulness of my adaptation of the instance (or lack thereof) was hardly an issue, and we just sort of got a laugh over the awkwardness of translating an MMORPG to pen-and-paper play. Anyway, it was fun. Perhaps sometime I'll post the characters I generated and the encounters I created—though then you might see how much I cheated on the NPCs. (It was late the night before, and I was in no mood to count up skill points or gear value!)

So I guess that's about all the news, what I've been up to. I have a couple of more serious musings rumbling around in the back of my brain, but they've been doing that for quite some time and who knows when they'll ever make it out? So no promises on the next update—could be next week, could be three months from now. Have fun until then!

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