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Monthly Archives: March 2011
My story, Love Resurrected, is up at Beneath Ceaseless Skies. I’m particularly happy about that publication because I’ve known its publisher and editor, Scott Andrews, since the magazine was just a crazy idea floating around in Scott’s head. He’s done an amazing and beautiful job with it, and I’ve watched its progress with interest because it’s publishing some of the best stuff around (in my opinion). The story’s based in the world of many of my other pieces, but it’s across the sea from the port of Tabat, where most of them take place. If you’d like some hint of the subject matter, the original title was “The Zombie General”. Continue reading
In 1999, one of the Armageddon MUD coders, Morgenes, put in a command that has no effect on a player at all. It doesn’t get you gold (or obsidian, in our mud’s case), doesn’t raise your skills, doesn’t open the mystic portal to the realm of Waterdeep, or anything at all like that. Yet it was a change that would end up becoming one of the most popular (and most copied) commands ever on the mud, with at least one thread on our discussion board devoted to lavish praise of it from players and staff alike. Continue reading
While finding new immortals for a MUD, MUSH, MOO or MURPE generally isn’t a problem, finding ones who will be a lasting and productive part of the team is. The first couple of weeks for a new staff member on a multiplayer game are the ones where the most mental adjustments are made, and the actions of other staff are often a crucial factor in whether or not those staff stick around. Armageddon MUD provides a good example of how this process can be made as painless as possible for both new and established staff members. Continue reading
My original vision was of an elite mercenary unit, with a lot of ‘high class’ things. Nessalin encouraged me towards a low class, gritty, down-and-dirty vision of the clan, which fit in better with Armageddon’s overall flavor. Continue reading
One of the desires expressed at the very first Armageddon player-staff meeting I ever attended was a yen to move away from “a hack and slash economy,” where players made their income by selling the gear off NPCs (and the occasional PC) that they had killed. How, one immortal noted, could the world be realistic when there was no coded reflection of the material underpinnings of it? How to create this economic reflection was a question that remained in the air for several years, and it was not until discussion of implementing crafting code came up that such a move seemed possible. Continue reading
We’re coming up on the end of the Writing Fantasy & Science Fiction class I teach at Bellevue College. Tonight’s the next to last session. In earlier sessions we’ve talked about the writing process, story parts and mechanics, delivering information, characters, description, and worldbuilding. A number of past blog posts have come out of those classes: 5 Things to Do in Your First 3 Paragraphs, Active Verbs, Foreshadowing and Establishing Conflict, Plotting and Re-plotting Stories, Three Strategies for Snaring the Senses, Three Things that End a Story Well, Using Random Tools Like Stumbleupon For Rewriting, and Why Titles Matter. Continue reading
Here’s your story prompt for the day. What if the creature depicted in this picture were sentient? Continue reading