Conqueror FoV

Countdown to publication: maps, editing, format and...index?!

This week has been light on writing since I'm waiting for the test readers to get back to me.  Instead I'm working on the maps and figuring out the format.

Also, the dreaded index.

This is a new thing for me.  The maps are basically illustrations similar to the ones on almost every page of Conqueror: Fields of Victory.  Been there, done that.

The index is a bit trickier, because while the function is largely automated, the content isn't.  I mean, who wants a reviewer to whine about your inadequate index?

Anyhow, I'm still on track for mid-July publication.

After that?  I'm not sure.  My unwritten rule is one book per year.  This year I'm already up to two.

I've noticed that the more I write, the easier it gets, but I also feel there should be a point to each book.

On the other hand, it seems a healthy hobby, and when I don't write, I find I get lazy and bored.

Oh well, I'll worry about it in a few weeks. 

Conqueror Revised Edition is now available

Yes, it's finally finished!  I'm sure there are a few errors here and there and don't ask me why it ended up showing up as two separate publications - one on the Kindle and one in paperback, but the new improved Conqueror is now available for purchase.

All manner of fantasy/historical gaming goodness awaits at a quite reasonable price.

I call it a revision, but I could also say it's expanded, since it includes almost twice as much content.  There are pages of sample armies and units so you can dig right in and get playing.

I've also revised and simplified the unit/character creation system for those who want to make their own armies.

Magic got a thorough review, and the spells are much more focused and effective.  The same goes for magic items - no easy choices here, no obvious "best values."

Basically, like every other product, customer feedback and continued research has resulted in clear improvement.  Go grab your copy and get playing!

Summer writing update - Conqueror revision nears completion and a new project

Strange to say, summer seems almost over and yet we're still in July!  All of August is before us, yet here I am making plans for mid-September and beyond.  Being a grown-up sucks.

As for updates, here's my latest:

Conqueror 2.0 is almost ready for publication. 

This time I mean it!  Why are you looking at me like that?

One of the challenges of being a part-time author is that the fun part of the thing comes at the beginning - writing and building out the work.  Publication itself is a drag, which is why this has been historically outsourced to the professionals.

I'm getting better at this part, but sometimes things get busy and the last thing I want to do after a long work week is spend my quality time futzing around with cover-building software.  I supposed that's why so many books just go with the generic choices.  I'm strongly tempted to do this.  We'll see.

Meanwhile, I've decided to shelve the prequel to Man of Destiny and work on something else.  I'll tell you what it is when I get well enough into it, say 10,000 words or so.  Suffice to say it's a new direction for me, but something I've been meaning to do for a while.

Since I don't have a publisher to keep me in line, I go with what interests me and this interests me.  More on it later.

 Finally, I branched out into guest-blogging.  I'll post a link if/when my work goes live. 

Next up: Conqueror: Fields of Victory version 2.0

I've been rather quiet here of late and for that I apologize.  I started the year with grand ambitions of a new trilogy but I've gotten sidetracked in a much-needed revision of my fantasy/historical miniatures rules, Conqueror:  Fields of Victory.

This project has languished for years.  In fact, getting Conqueror into a publishable state took a decade.  In that context, the revision isn't that far behind schedule.

This isn't so much a new edition as it is a revision.  Naturally I'm fixing typos and cleaning up the language where it needs it, but that's not enough to justify the extra effort.

The changes fall into four areas:

Spells and Magic items -  These got a full review and as a result there are a lot of new spells and magic items.  The Magic School of Death got the biggest change and is now as scary as it should have been from the beginning.  Magic items also got a major workover, particularly in weapons.  The end result is more potent, meaningful options for your troops.

Special Rules:  Some big changes here, largely a result of feedback from players.  The list is still short but is comprehensive.  New additions include "horde" troops that gain an extra morale bonus for outranking as well as "rebellious" troops that get sidetracked into infighting during the battle.

Army Lists:  A glaring weakness of the original was that I didn't give you any ready-made options for armies.  This has now been corrected.  Players can still make up their own custom units, but I've provided pre-generated stats for a variety of iconic units like orcs, elves, dwarves, undead, and of course various flavors of human.

Point Values:  The "how-to" section has also been extensively rewritten based on player feedback over the years.  The process for making your own units is now easier and more consistent.

Oh, and the cover art is going to be much better.

I've promised myself that I can't do any fiction writing until this gets done, so I'm hoping to have this wrapped up very soon. 

Until then, Happy Easter!

A new year brings new writing projects

Happy New Year! 

Looking back on 2017, I'm profoundly grateful to all of you who not only bought my books but enjoyed them (and particularly grateful to those who left positive comments/reviews).

After I finished the Man of Destiny series, I wasn't sure which direction to go.  I have a few projects waiting on the back burner but none of them really appealed to me at this point.

So I've decided to look a little further back in the timeline of the Man of Destiny setting and write about the oft-referenced Deimos War.

It's not a prequel so much as a prelude as the characters will be different.  At most a few of the principles in the later book will be seen in their youth, but it will mostly involve their parents and grandparents - assuming these were even involved.

To put it another way, I don't intend this to be a back story on the later characters but instead a different tale in the same setting, though it will of course reflect on later events, just as the US Civil War foreshadowed World War I (and the two events are roughly as distant as the ones described in the Deimos War).

I'm also working on a revision for Conqueror, but given that the first edition took 10 years to complete, who knows when I will finish that.

Anyhow, Happy New Year and keep reading!

Get your free download of Conqueror this weekend

At the start of the month, wargaming web site came back online after a devastating hack. 

Conqueror was actually designed and tested with people from Warseer, so I decided that although I should be promoting A Man of Destiny, we needed to celebrate this great event.

So from December 9th through the 13th, you can download Conquer for FREE from Amazon.  Take a test drive, see how the rules work and send me feedback.  Over at the Conqueror page, I have a number of lists and articles about its development.  You can also comment on the Conqueror thread on Warseer if you like (and see how it was developed as it developed).