Veteran, genre writer, #BROSR gamer, shitposter.
Tryin' like the Devil to find the Lord.
Feb 10 • 68 tweets • 24 min read
A #DnD campaign isn't a story. It doesn't just follow one group of PCs. It is a model world, functioning in real-time, with rising and falling factions. The PCs are just part of it.
Wanna see how a game like that works?
My original intention was to write up session reports and post them on my blog, but I just couldn't motivate myself to do it.
Instead, I'm just going to update this mega-thread as I go.
Follow, and you'll see how a campaign evolves and grows in real-time.
Feb 9 • 6 tweets • 5 min read
One reason newer works of fantasy leave me cold is that the genre has mostly lost its connection to Myth.
We no longer get demigods and classical heroes. We don’t even get picaresque rogues.
Instead, the genre’s default setting is snarky, 21st century Seattleites with swords.
The best fantasy stories maintain that connection, even if the intent is to de-mythify.
Gemmell’s Troy trilogy (arguably Historical Fiction) shows us the heroes of the Iliad as strictly historical personages.
But he makes them feel like men who could have inspired the Myth.
Jan 11 • 6 tweets • 2 min read
This is one of the most famous and effective opening lines in SF history. Famous because of its evocative simplicity. Effective because it's loaded with conflict, and promises a climactic confrontation between the principles.
King never gives us that confrontation.
It doesn't help that King is flirting with the Western here, a genre that lives and dies on the execution of the climactic showdown.
Jan 11 • 7 tweets • 3 min read
Yes to all of these.
Also, if you're a #DnD player, you owe it to yourself to read Robert E. Howard's SOLOMON KANE.
Swashbuckling adventure in a Weird Elizabethan Age, pitting flintlocks, swords, and sorcery against untold Evils.
Still using LotR as an example, Boromir attempting to take the ring can be seen as a failed Morale roll, one made with a cumulative neg modifier due to the presence of the Ring.
Gollum OTOH, could be seen as a series of unlikely passes, right up until he fails at the end.
Jan 7 • 7 tweets • 2 min read
One reason Tartakovsky's Clone Wars is so well remembered is it plays to the strengths of the medium.
It doesn't try to be an animated version of the movies.
It's unashamedly a cartoon, and tells its story using all the tricks in its bag.
Best example: this fight starts with the Akira bike slide, and continues into something resembling Popeye vs. Bluto in the old Fleischer cartoons (note the size difference and proportions). It returns to straight-up Akira body horror for the climax.
Dec 13, 2021 • 27 tweets • 9 min read
I'm finally getting to DM again in a few days. Afterwards, I won't be able to DM again until Feb/March. I'll have a single #DnD session to keep my players 100% invested.
Q: How can I do that without an intricate "story?"
If you've seen the #BROSR tag, you've seen people advocating for real-time in #DnD. Short version: 1 day of real-world time = 1 day of game-world time. This comes from an obscure rule in the original LBBs, found on the last two pages of Underworld and Wilderness adventures.
Mar 24, 2021 • 11 tweets • 3 min read
The book with the exciting cover is @JohnsonJeffro’s collection of literary criticism that helped kick off the #PulpRev movement.
The other one is an anthology of stories taken from Appendix N. Along with some personal additions the editor apparently felt like making.
As the Anthology is TradPub, I’m not going to lay blame for the title confusion on the editor’s feet. Fact is, you can’t copyright a title. They didn’t do anything legally wrong. Especially where the two books are in different categories.
But read the FULL titles again.
Sep 2, 2020 • 9 tweets • 3 min read
After reading @wastelandJD's Pulp Mindset, I got to thinking about two longtime favorite movies of mine, and and what does and doesn't constitute a pulp story: Walter Hill's Streets of Fire, and John Carpenter's Escape From New York.
Both movies feature a similar basic plot: Important person disappears into impenetrable place. One bad dude must go in and rescue them. This makes them an ideal case study for what Cowan says does and does not make a pulp story. And FWIW, I think he's right.