A Few Announcements, Sales, and Appurtenances

Friends, Romans, countryfolk… Okay, maybe this isn’t a stuffy or inspiring speech per say, but whenever I put on my PR hat it certainly feels that way! I have… WOW! Loads of announcements for you today, so bear with me.

Firstly, I’m going to be insufferable for a second. READY?!?!?

/begin self-promotion
Firefly Dictionary_CVR front new copy The Firefly: The Gorramn Shiniest Language Guide and Dictionary in the ‘Verse releases on Tuesday, April 12th!

Plus, ICV2 reviewed the Firefly dictionary, so you can get a feel for what’s inside. Happy to answer your burning questions about my analysis and how this book came together. My editor was great!

/end self-promotion

On to the announcements!

  • Hosting Blog Interviews – I am going to get back into the habit of hosting three-to-five question interviews with other creators here on my blog. I definitely want to support other writers, artists, game designers, etc. but it’s hard to do that since my momentum is a bit upside down at the moment. What I want to do, however, is get away from the “Whaddya workin’ on?” questions and focus more on the people side of the equation, because if anything it shows how every writer is different. More on this in a few weeks or so.
  • Dinner and Dice: a Gaming Cookbook is in Print!Dinner and Dice: a Gaming Cookbook is a collection of recipes and first person game anecdotes from game industry professionals. Originally produced as a stretch goal for the Carolina Game Tables Kickstarter, you will find appetizers, entrees, and desserts from the people who make the games you love! I hope you enjoy this cookbook, and give it a honest review.
  • Upside Down Kickstarter – Wow, wow, wow! So, we were just shy of reaching our last stretch goal, but we were backed by 1,399 stellar individuals. Now that the Kickstarter is over, we’re focusing on finishing up the collection and working on the logistics of fulfillment. I’m happy that Apex is turning out to be a great partner, and I’m going to continue being a part of this to ensure they get the help they need. After all, that’s a LOT of backers to deliver to!
  • Meet Your Cortex Plus Action Developer – Margaret Weis Productions announced an upcoming Kickstarter for two Cortex Plus corebooks. I am developing the Cortex Plus Action corebook. Huzzah!
  • SALE! 40% Spring Cleaning Sale on the Firefly RPG line – Itchin’ to get your hands on a copy of the Firefly RPG corebook in hardcover? MWP is having a BIG sale this weekend on the entire line; you can check out the sale on the MWP website. Choose from the corebook and supplements like Things Don’t Go Smooth.
  • Unknown Armies WHAT? – The Unknown Armies 3rd Edition Kickstarter launched today, and I’m happy to mention I’m one of the writers who contributed to these three books. Greg Stolze and Cam Banks co-developed the… I hope you enjoy this new edition of Unknown Armies!

Outside of these announcements, I’m sorry I haven’t updated my project statuses yet. The overall momentum is moving in the right direction, but that also means balls are up and down and sideways and rolling backwards and pitched forward. I DO love my job, and I’m hoping one day I’ll get to the point where PR isn’t such a chore, but for now I’ve lit a fire under my butt and it’s all systems go, go, GO!

Progress Report #8: K.I.S.S. and a September Twitter/FB Sabbatical

I mentioned earlier that my last show was this past weekend. Now that my world has mostly stopped spinning, it’s suddenly gotten very small–which means a renewed focus on four little letters. K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Stupid. Essentially, it’s about deconstructing the most complex ideas into their simplest components. This philosophy is very popular among the tech crowd, but I’ve seen other variants of the idea, too, often referred to as the science of simplicity with respect to wardrobe and reducing other decisions to avoid distractions.

The past year has been filled with a lot of Deep Stuff, for me, and while it was necessary and important to go through another series of Life, the Universe, and EverythingTM events…I’m fried. I had a great time being a guest and speaker at a lot of shows, and was able to meet with a lot of friends–old and new–but now that my travel is over, it’s time to tie up projects and forge ahead. Thus, K.I.S.S. By narrowing my focus, I remove distractions and excuses so I can focus on my goals.

To help put me back in the right frame of mind for a heavy production schedule and a new stage in my career, I’m logging off of Facebook and Twitter for the month of September. It’s a real challenge, for me, because I have so many people that contact me via these mediums, as opposed to e-mail, either for work or to hang out. Ergo, I’m giving y’all the heads up that I’m avoiding those mediums as much as possible for the month of September. If you’re trying to contact me for work, please use e-mail because I’ll probably miss it!

Games

Q2 and Q3 brought quite a bit of announcements your way, including several new Firefly RPG nominations for the Origins Awards and ENnie Awards. We were up against stiff competition, including Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition, and were honored to be included among such fantastic titles. We were also very grateful to accept the ENnie 2015 Judge’s Choice Award for Echoes of War: Thrillin’ Heroics and hope you’re enjoying the game.

We’ve had a number of questions about where the line goes from here. As we’ve mentioned in our interactions with fans, we’re taking a pause to promote the releases we already have for the line. Including the two releases I mention below, we’ve released six books so far for the Firefly RPG. Though the line launched a few years ago, we still have fans asking about the game as if they’re discovering it for the first time. For us, our focus is on highlighting the supplements because a lot of fans aren’t aware they exist. If you’d like to help, remember that reviews and actual play are lovely for your fellow fans to read. This really helps fans decide what they want to pick up. So thanks!

Since I write, edit, and manage projects full-time, this means that I’ve been looking forward more than I have been in the past few years. After all, despite the decisions that happen with respect to any project I’m working on, as a freelancer it’s my responsibility to ensure that I’ve always got something in the hopper so I can earn a living. That is why I’m pleased to tell you that I’m the developer for the Hunter: the Vigil Second Edition and the Conan RPG based on the literary works of Robert E. Howard. My roles on both are not as intense as they were on the Firefly RPG, which is partly why I’m able to fit them into my schedule in addition to other projects. Because my travel has now ended for the year, that enables me to get more done as well.

In addition to these announcements, I released the following since Progress Report #7: the Workhorse Edition.

  • Smuggler’s Guide to the Rim – This is a book filled with lots of great material for players and GMs. Both digital and print are now available!
  • Ghosts in the Black – This is a Firefly RPG campaign supplement. The story was designed by Robin D. Laws, and I’m happy to report it’s now available in digital and print.
  • World of Darkness: Gothic Icons – What’s gothier and angstier than Gothic literature? Gothic Icons! Now available in print.
  • World of Darkness: Dark Eras – Wrote the Hunter: the Vigil supplement for this book for 1690s Colonial America. We handed in our expansion material and new art notes for Dark Eras I, and Dark Eras II is due shortly.
  • Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn RPG – I contributed to the Skaa supplement for this game and Logan Bonner is my developer. Last I heard, it’s still coming out.
  • Vampire the Masquerade Dread Names: Red List – Fans can play as an Alastor to hunt the Camarilla’s worst enemies. Or, alternatively, Storytellers can drop one of the Anathema into their Vampire: the Masquerade chronicle.
  • Vampire the Masquerade: Ghouls – Currently in editing.
  • Conan RPG – We’re currently working on wrapping up the corebook, and are expecting a few pieces yet for the manuscript. I’ve got about three-to-four hundred applicants to sift through before I propose them to my teammates.
  • Codex Infernus – I developed the setting for this hell-themed Savage Worlds supplement, and the publisher is working on a relaunch of the Kickstarter. More soon!


Comics

Last time, I talked about how defeated I felt. However, I’m really stubborn. Amazingly so. Ergo, I’ve hit this hard and am now in full-on pitch mode. I am working with a few people as collaborators and mentors, but until we’re ready to announce I’d much rather give you the basics. Call this my safety catch, since I’ve been through too many “Hey, let’s announce!” “Oh wait, it just got canceled” cycles. Thus, here’s the basics about what is in the works (with codewords):

  • Starry Alpha – Working on outlines for an established property. Pitch!
  • Pinefresh Theta – Pitch, full script, and sample sketches sent off to an anthology.
  • Sparkle Mega – Full pitch in the works for a short-term series.
  • Red Sigma – In addition to pitching, I am going the small press publishing route for a collection. Still in the planning stages on this one, though!


Fiction

Fiction is still on my radar, and there’s been some movement on that front.

  • Gods, Memes, and Monsters – My story “Three of a Kind” was recently published in this collection.
  • Upside Down: Inverted Tropes in Storytelling – I’m co-editing an anthology with Jaym Gates for Apex Publications. Here’s the announcement. We’ve gotten in about a dozen stories so far, and I’m really excited to see this come to light.
  • Novella – I have a dark, science fiction novella I need to finish revising so I can sub that out. Codeword: Red Byte
  • Novels – Another round of revisions on Novel A (Codeword: Silver Dagger) in May, Novel B (Codeword: White Fang) probably not until July. I want to rework the plot for B.


Non-Fiction

New for this project update! WOO! I signed with Red Sofa Literary to represent a worldbuilding book I wrote.

  • Worldbuilding Book – I’m working with my agent to hone my pitches for interested publishers. Pretty excited about this!
  • For Exposure: The Life and Times of a Small Press Publisher – A book of essays written by Jason Sizemore, the publisher for Apex Book Company as part of the company’s 10 year celebration. I have written a satirical essay which is titled “The Case of the Mysterious Splatter.” It has footnotes. Many, many footnotes. It’s now available.
  • The Gorramn Shiniest Dictionary in the ‘Verse – This language guide for the Firefly TV show will be out this Spring from Titan Books. You can pre-order it now. Awesome!

That sums up the new releases and a few projects that are in progress for me. Back to the grind!

My Books and Games At GenCon 2015

GenCon Indy is less than a few weeks away, and that means its time to update you with my schedule! In the first of two posts, I’d like to share with you which of my books and games you can expect to find at GenCon. The books and games on this list are the titles I have confirmed that will be at the show–there may be others, but this is what you can expect to find. Most of them are fairly recent releases, too, and came out within the past two years.

The “G” in GenCon is gaming, so let’s start with those!

Margaret Weis Productions Booth 1613

At the MWP booth, the entire Firefly RPG line will be available for you to buy. That means, you can pick up a copy of the following:

  • Firefly RPG corebook – Nominated and won multiple awards, plus it’s up for two ENnies this year.
  • Echoes of War: Thrillin’ Heroics won an ENnie’s Judge’s Choice Award recently. If you’re looking to get into the game, but don’t want to make the investment for the corebook and the supplements, this is your best way to do that.
  • Things Don’t Go Smooth is a GM-facing supplement that gives fans more Antagonists and tools to fine-tune your Firefly experience.
  • Smuggler’s Guide to the Rim is for players and GMs. It introduces Reputation rules, iconic characters, and more!
  • Ghosts in the Black is a campaign supplement designed by Robin D. Laws. This is the latest book in the line, and is filled with twists and turns.

Onyx Path Publishing Booth 1103

At the Onyx Path booth, four of the titles I’ve worked on will be available in print. They are:

  • Hunter the Vigil: Mortal Remains – Explore the Vigil as it pertains to mummies, changelings, prometheans, demons, and sin-eaters.
  • Vampire the Masquerade: Dread Names, Red ListDread Names, Red List explores the Camarilla’s “Most Wanted” List, naming those deemed most dangerous by the Justicars and their chosen deputies, the Alastors.
  • Gothic Icons – This was Onyx Path Publishing’s April Fool’s joke for 2015. However, so many people liked it the company kept it available for future customers. Enjoy!
  • Geist Ready Made Characters – Ready-Made Player Characters (Geist: the Sin-Eaters) includes the Crossroads Drifters krewe, who perform for the living and the dead. Characters designed to for instant use in your Geist: the Sin-Eaters game.

Signing and Miscellany

Now onto the books! I will have a signing from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. in the Author’s Alley area of GenCon. During this time, I’ve confirmed I’ll be bringing copies of:

  • Haunted: 11 Tales of Ghostly Horror – This is an anthology about ghost hunting that I edited for FR Press. Fantastic authors like Alex Bledsoe and Jess Hartley are in here!
  • Queen of Crows – Published early 2010, this is one of the first enhanced e-books to hit digital media. The story explores the gut-wrenching decision a shaman must make, once he realizes what dark future is approaching.
  • Redwing’s Gambit – This is a novella about conspiracy and paranoia in the space-lanes. Redwing’s Gambit is set in the shared science-fiction universe of Bulldogs!

I may be bringing some other books, too, but right now I’m trying to keep the options limited for ease of carrying. There may be other books at the show, like Unframed: the Art of Improvisation for Gamemasters, Gods, Memes, and Monsters, and For Exposure: the Life and Times of a Small Press Publisher. Be sure to watch for them. I’d much rather spend my time signing books than selling them, so come say hello on Friday!

Firefly RPG and the Origins Awards!

Firefly RPG Front Cover

Today, I am pleased to share with you that the Firefly RPG is nominated for Best RPG in the 2015 Origins Awards. The list of 2015 nominees includes a TON of great games created by a lot of awesome people.

Congrats to everyone who was nominated, to my entire Firefly RPG team past and present, and to fans like you for supporting us. Thanks so much, and good luck to all!

Firefly RPG Nominated for Game of the Year

Firefly RPG Front Cover

The recently released Firefly RPG does its job of making taking a ship and crew out into the black for misadventures and big damn heroics about as fun as you might want it to be. With some of the fastest fast-play rules in a recent RPG, and clever examples of play based on each individual episode of the TV show, you’ll be evading Reavers and plundering Alliance wrecks in no time. SOURCE: The Escapist 2014 Award Nominees

Want to give a shout-out to everybody who’s worked with me to make this game a reality (both past and present), to Margaret Weis for believing in me, and to the fans and reviewers for your support. It’s been a hell of a ride since I signed on in 2013. Besides the corebook, we’ve also released the GenCon 2013 Exclusive corebook preview, Echoes of War: Thrillin’ Heroics, and Things Don’t Go Smooth which is on sale at 25% off through Saturday. Just announced? Smuggler’s Guide to the Rim. I couldn’t do this without all of you! Thanks!

P.S. If you’re dying to know more about Smuggler’s Guide to the Rim, here’s my post about it!
P.P.S. Hopefully I did okay on this… Thank yous plus squeeing plus lots o’ information!

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