This is it! Today is the day, friends. Today is the day that John, Ross, and I send Accursed out into the wild. Well, sorta into the wild. If you’ve been following along over at the Accursed RPG blog and on our facebook page, and I know you have, you’ll know that today, Friday September 13, is the day when we launch the Accursed Kickstarter. You’ve watched us grow. You’ve read the blog articles about the Witches and about Morden and about the Accursed, the tragic heroes who dwell within it. You’ve seen the art we’ve posted. Now, friends, you have a chance to do more than just observe. With the launch of our Kickstarter you, yes you, can help us bring our killer new project to market. Would you like to know more?
Well, we’re home. That’s right, The Wife, The Littlest Tsarina, and I have returned from Indy with sore feet, frayed nerves, bags full of awesome junk, and a handful of good work contacts. Oh, and stories. Lots of stories. Sadly, Eldest Tsarina couldn’t attend this year because, seriously, wrangling a three month old and a bright, willful, opinionated, highly motivated three year old at GenCon is crazy talk.Neither the wife nor I are that strong. Anyway, we got through it without losing our minds, without getting con crud, and with Wil Wheaton spending ten minutes chatting up the Littlest Tsarina. You, however, don’t care about that. You’re here to hear about stuff like how Accursed did and Space Hobbits eating a servitor. So, without further ado, here’s the Amalgamated Fiction – Detroit GenCon 2013 Trip Report. (Spoiler Alert – You’re going to hear about Wil Wheaton and the Littlest Tsarina)
Okay, so, let’s just skip past the fact that I’m obviously incapable of updating this with any kind of regularity and get right to the part where I talk about going to GenCon. Oh, yeah, I’m going to GenCon again this year! Did I mention that? It’s true. In a couple hours the wife, youngest daughter, and I are all packing up and heading down to Indy. Sadly, oldest daughter is staying with baka and deda because having both of the Tsarinas with us on this trip would likely lead to us selling them both to gypsies then drinking ourselves to death. Pre-schoolers and infants and high-strung parents don’t mix well at GenCon, kids. Anyway, since I’m gonna be there, let me tell you about what I’ll be up to.
Awwwwwwwwwwwww, yeah. The kids’ll love this one
So, you guys have known me long enough to know that every so often I get a harebrained scheme into my head and then go crazy at it until it either gets done, I run out of steam, or get distracted and go ride bikes. Some of them, like my Savage Robotech conversions, actually worked. Others, well, let’s just say I ride a lot of bikes. Not this time, though. No, this time it’s for real. I know I’ve mentioned my good friends and colleagues Ross and John before. Solid dudes. Good designers, good writers. Well, the three of us have the best harebrained scheme. We’re making a game! An actual, factual, really real RPG that, if the Good Lord is willing and the creeks don’t rise, you will be able to buy, with money, and actually play inside of a year. Seriously. Would you like to know more?
You guys know what the best part about freelancing is? Working from home. You know what the worst part is? Working from home. No, seriously. I know you’re all, “Man, it must be awesome to just work at home in your jammies and not have an office or annoying co-workers.” Well, you’re right…sorta. Yeah, it’s nice that my commute consists of my walk downstairs from the bedroom to my office with a stop in the kitchen for coffee and breakfast. It’s nice that I can work at my own pace, listen to my own music, wear what I want, eat what I want, talk to the dog, and spend a whole day without putting up with someone else’s banal stories about their favorite television shows or their uninformed political opinions. What’s not nice is the utter and constant isolation of working at home. I know some people can do it, and that kind of peace and quiet and isolation is nice at times, but too much time alone and I turn into fucking Nell over here. How do I combat that? How do I mitigate freelancer loneliness with needing to get shit done? Well, I’m glad you asked!
So, in last week’s missive I talked about developing some really bad work habits last year, habits born of “hubris, aggressive indolence, a sad tendency toward procrastination, and my well honed ability to justify anything led me into all manner of poor work and bad decisions”. This is a situation that, I believe, most if not all freelancers fall into from time to time. The cry of, “I’ve got plenty of time before this is due!” has rung from many a home-office or co-working space, typically right before Facebook is opened for the eightieth time in two hours, or the newest DLC for Borderlands 2 is launched. So you upload some pictures of cats, like some pictures of somebody elses’ lunch, and kill a few Drifters, when suddenly it’s three days before your deadline and you’ve got maybe seventy words of a thirty-thousand word assignment written. And you have no idea what you’re writing about, because you’ve been busy with cat pictures and Drifters. And it’s not your only deadline. And you’ve got other, non-work responsibilities to take care of. And…and…and… And, well, it becomes a vicious cycle like in that picture up there. Now, there are some guys, like Scalzi and Chuck Wendig and Matt Forbeck who don’t suffer from this affliction, but I’m convinced that those dudes are robots or aliens or alien robots. I, however, am neither a robot nor an alien more’s the pity, and let me assure you children that I suffer from this affliction in spades.
Shown above – The last few months of 2012
Yes indeed, children. 2012 is gone and it certainly was A Thing. Bye-bye 2012, it was nice knowing you, take care, don’t let the door hit you where the good lord split you etc etc. While it wasn’t particularly bad per se, in fact it was pretty great all around, it was pretty weird. It was a year wherein a lot of changes happened both personally and professionally, where I broke up with my therapist after seven years of head shrinking, where I had a long work dry spell over the summer that led to a total freak-out on my part right before GenCon, and where after GenCon all the work came in and I didn’t turn down a single assignment. Of course, I completely over committed myself, dropped the ball, got behind, suffered a massive computer meltdown right before Christmas in which I lost a ton of data including some manuscripts. Then the holidays which are stressful at the best of times, and despite all my great plans to improve myself and get my shit together before New Years I entered 2013 with my ass on fire and my hair catching, as it were. Now here we are, it’s the tail-end of January already for all love, and I’m still behind on deadlines and struggling to get back on top of work and home and dadding and music and all the other things I need to get back on top of. So, let’s talk about that.
Coming in for a soft landing…
Hey, friends! Well, I’m back from spa…I mean…Orlando. It was a whirlwind trip wherein I brained a lot, drank a lot of coffee, pretended to be a ten year old aboard the ISS, wore funny hats, played with Lego, drove a small Italian car at very high speeds on the 408 around Orlando, and made some pretty great contacts. There was more to it, of course. Would you like to know more? Of course you would!
(Note: I did, in fact, write this in the air. Sadly, I couldn’t actually figure out how to post it from there, so you get it from my comfy room in downtown Orlando. Enjoy.)
Well hey there, friends! So, here I am, somewhere around 25,000 feet over Ohio in a cramped, oversold 757 speeding south to Orlando. Now, truth be told, I don’t care much for Florida. In fact, my opinion on the whole state can pretty much be summed up by Bugs Bunny and his giant saw. Having said that, I’d suffer all kinds of indignities for this trip, including sitting behind an incredibly obese, red-faced, middle-aged meathead with his seat back aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaall the way reclined, encroaching on what little space is available to me for work. But I digress. Anyway, here I am on my way to the Sunshine State to talk about space. Yep, tomorrow is the day join some of the greatest minds of our generation to talk about what to do with the International Space Station. Crazy, right? I mean, seriously, it’s like a reverse of the “not my job” segment on Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me. You know, where a bunch of radio dorks invite someone super important and accomplished onto their show to ask them ridiculous questions about the history of astrology or butts or whatever strikes their fancy. In Orlando, it’s going to be all this brain power, all these eminent scientists and engineers and rocket surgeons and thinkers….and me. A dude who writes about spaceships and giant robots for a living. I’m not going to complain, though. Because, seriously, I’m super stoked about it. Honestly, this is as close to being an astronaut as I’ll probably ever get, and being an astronaut was the end-game of my whole life plan when I was in fifth grade. That was a good plan too, man. Waaaaaaaaaaaaay better than the Cylon’s plan. Good grades, Air Force Academy, flight school, F-16 pilot (I’ve always had a soft spot for the Viper, but now I’d probably rather be an A-10 driver), major by the age of 36, then bam!, astronaut time. But then reality set it, it turned out I was terrible at maths, then what with the distractions from girls and RPGs and model airplanes and books about dragons and obsessively reading about aircraft and all I got kind of sidetracked and here I am. I guess I don’t have any complaints, though. Hell, in hindsight, I’d have made a terrible military man what with my low tolerance for bullshit and even lower tolerance for authority. Anyway, so, yeah. Gonna talk about Space. I’ll write more about it tomorrow night after the conference, give you guys a taste of what went on, then probably do a larger post about it next week sometime in between writing about Orks, SPEHS MARINES, and future-past wild west demon apocalypses. So, stay tuned. This should be pretty good. You know, if I don’t just break down and start babbling about space like the Space Core.
Well, not actually all the way to space, but close enough. I’ve been offered the amazing opportunity to sit on a panel of scientists, engineers, rocket surgeons, thinkers, writers, musicians, philosophers, and all-around turbonerds to discuss our ideas for the future of the International Space Station. Pretty cool, eh? How did this all come about? Would you like to know more? I bet you would!