"Oh cool... So you're STILL working on this?" -- A guy at GenCon

"If I see Drah-koo-lah, I will. kick. him. in. the eye!!!" -- My 4 (almost 5) year old daughter. She GETS it!

"Meatpie Forever!" -- A playtester at GenCon 2013

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Back on the Rack

It's been a long time. But I'm still here. Still working on stuff.

Over the last few months, here's what I've been up to.

I took a brief hiatus around the end of last year and the start of this year. The holidays are always busy. And work was busy as well. Work's really continued to be busy. I consider that a good thing but it does hamper my ability to devote time to writing.

During this hiatus, I took the time to explore what the tabletop RPG community had been up to. I read a number of books, played in some games, ran some games, funded some Kickstarters -- all that stuff I enjoy doing when I'm not the "Transylvania Guy". This is generally a time when I collect ideas. It was helpful when I came back from hiatus to look at Transylvanian Adventures again with fresh eyes.

I've been in contact with a potential co-author for TA. He's very interested and a legit writer to boot. Because he's legit, his schedule is just as crazy as mine, though. But I'm hoping his assistance will move this project along a little faster.

If you hadn't noticed, I also got a URL (http://landofphantoms.com/). I have seriously leveled up now. I guess I need to spruce the place up before the webcrawlers show up.

I hit a bit of a blocker on the Monsters chapter. The majority of the existing creatures have been done up in the latest fashion. But I hit a wall with one particular monster and I'm spinning some ideas on how to fix it. Would there be any interest in a PDF pay-what-you-want release of a part of the Monsters section? Like A-(something)?

Also, I've been having some deep thoughts on TA in general. Hopefully, I'll get those blogged out on my spiffy, new URL.


  1. I'd be interested in that monsters "test version" PDF

  2. Hey, I'm hitting you up on the blog about a pdf. Thanks!

  3. A monster PDF would be greatly appreciated. A "future of TA" post on the blog, likewise.

  4. Been awhile. Anything else, dude? Tell us of the glorious future of TA!

  5. Quick update.

    First, I'm shocked that it's already August.

    I made some adjustments over the last few months to, hopefully, open up more time beyond barely keeping up with the day to day. Those adjustments have not worked out as planned, however.

    I did get a little writing done last month. But I'm not tracking to any sort of milestone at present. Changing my plans regarding how I release material wasn't much help but at least underlined how little time I have to produce content.

    I do have a second writer on board. But his schedule hasn't allowed for much results yet either.

    I wish I had better news.

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  8. It worked last year, so I figure I will again request an update or preview to go along with the upcoming anniversary of TA''s release on Halloween.

    1. :-) I don't think I'll have time this year. There's a lot of moving parts for me right now. Lot of travel this month. I will see what I can do though.

      I've been doing more writing recently. And I also talked to another potential contributor.

      thanks for checking in. It's about time I did another blogpost.

  9. Dead stop beat me to the punch -- I was hoping for a "state of the Transylvanian union" post too.
    I definitely hear you on all the ways life can get in the way through-- keep your chin up and your teeth sharp!

  10. It has been nearly a year. Is there news?

  11. Hi Deadstop:
    I won't try to make excuses but it's clear that TA isn't priority #1 right now. I've tried getting help to put the final touches on with varying degrees of success. I'm talking with someone now who may be able to help and interested in doing so.

    I don't want to sound like I'm making excuses or anything like that because that's not what I'm about. Life has thrown me several curveballs over the last year plus. I have to focus on that right now.

    I got through the first book by setting aside dedicated time to achieve explicit objectives. I have those objectives now for TG. But no time to dedicate. When my schedule corrects itself, I'll go back to that plan.

    I recognized these shifts in priorities a while back. That's why I tried getting some help on the writing part. But, to date, I've had a few people interested but no one following through.

    I hope to get this ship righted at some point. But there's no real timeline I can offer right now. I'm sorry about that.

  12. Thanks for communicating. Certainly you must put life concerns first. Hope things get less hectic soon,

  13. So, I have done some writing for TG lately. But certainly not enough to kick the can down the road. I've reviewed the content I've had and I'm in the process of removing a lot of it.

    I was in talks with another writer about the project but he disappeared as well.

    Sadly, I'm not in a financial situation to pay a writer at this time anyway. That wasn't true 12 months ago when I could've easily paid a writer to go through, clean up what I have, and flesh it out for completion. That money is no longer available for the project however.

    TA is still selling pretty well. So that's encouraging. I'm hoping that 2017 will be a better year for news on this front. But work continues to be crazy (I don't know if that is ever settling down) and every attempt I've made to hand off the project to get it closer to done has ended with nothing much getting done.

    This is a little disappointing because I feel I had offered an above market rate for the writing, as well as a share of royalties in perpetuity. Additionally, every writer that has bailed has essentially delayed me on the project for several months because I assume that things are getting done but then nothing.

    So it's up to me to figure it out. November is a terrible month for me on that front. December slightly better and then January on... who knows?

    Thanks again for keeping track. After going over the content, as well as getting realistic with what I can do, I believe there is just one last book instead of two. The publishing model I'd hoped would advance things in 2016 was obviously a bust. And I've given up on getting another writer to help out.

    But that's often when things get interesting.

  14. Hey, I just bought a copy of Transylvania Adventures on Lulu and I'm really enjoying it so far. I'll be crossing my fingers for the monsters and the Grimoire. If you get it finished, I'd be happy to buy it!

  15. Thanks, Chase. I'm slowly working through the monsters. There was one monster type that was/is really giving me fits. Doesn't help that my usual game group has been on a Traveller binge. Kind of limits my playtest ability.

    I will put up a blogpost after the New Year to tell everyone where I'm at with things and all that.

    1. Sounds good, Scott! I'll definitely be keeping an eye out for your blogpost. I definitely know what its like when your group gets on a certain game binge (especially when you're trying to work on a campaign for another game).

      I finally managed to get my group to switch over to Darwin's World and we've been playing that for a while now. In my spare time though, I'm already getting ideas together for a Transylvania Adventures campagin! I think I may spring it on my group after the holidays.

      For what its worth... If you need any volunteers to test some things out in there own campaign, feel free to ask!

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  17. Hi Scott, I'm wanted to ask you a few questions. Could you maybe hit me up on Facebook or Google+?

  18. There is currently an RPGnet thread in which the OP expresses interest in TA but deep concern about the missing bestiary and grimoire. Is there any good news we can supply?