A return to abnormalcy

The downside of a just-for-kicks blog is that when those times arise when you are kick deprived or even kick deficient, you have to let things slide a while. I’m hoping no one was too badly put out that my updates have been quasi-monthly of late.

Autoduel!!!In a nutshell – the whole of the the Tomes in Progress crew (i.e. me, the homunculus, and the mother of the homunculus) have moved westward, in a manner not wholly unlike the narrator of “The Shadow Over Innsmouth” (i.e. from New England to the Midwest, though thankfully no ichthyoid transformations have occurred). This took a couple of months to arrange, enact, and recover from. Leaving behind friends and family, as well as a home you’ve lived in for close to a decade is trying. It is only now that we have that wonderful conjunction of technology and time which allows me to, hopefully, restart blogging on a more regular basis. I fear though that the black squirrels that control my lawn are not my friends…

A bit of my gaming work has suffered, as is to be expected with a low (or no) pay sideline. My scenario for the forthcoming London Boxed Set had to be dropped. While I’m happy I got to make a small submission to that really excellent looking project, I wish I’d been able to wrap that up. I want to offer my thanks to Cubicle 7 and the magnanimous Stuart Boon in particular for being more than understanding. It may see the light of day somewhere, someday. Keep your fingers crossed.

The Arkham Gazette has been slowed but not stopped. The nice thing about working on a magazine is that there are lots of little projects that can be done, even in very short bursts. I’ve posted about the next issue’s status and sincerely hope to finish it up before the month is out. We’re still taking submissions for future issues, of course, with issue 3 most likely going to be focused on witches and witchcraft in Lovecraft Country.  I may talk the Miskatonic University Podcast crew into interviewing me about the next issue as well.  (By the way – their new ;yearbook’ Cephalophobia is beautiful.)

As for near term gaming news, aside from the Arkham Gazette I’ve got a couple pieces submitted to the Unspeakable Oath so I hope to have something in the next issue, which is supposed to be released shortly. A recent Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff episode spurred me to start yet another piece for the Oath as well. I hope to have news about the Masks of Nyarlathotep Companion print release soon as well. Watch this space… and Yog-Sothoth.com, since they get several order of magnitude more readers than I. There are one or two other long-dormant projects that have begun to quicken recently as well, though I cannot say more… yet.

I think the list of new Lovecraftian RPG products is up to date, at least it will be once I sort out the PDF dump the Modiphius crew put out recently. If I’ve missed something, let me know.

Speaking of which, if I owe you an email or a call, bear with me a little while longer or feel free to remind me to do so. Hopefully the stars will remain rights for a while.


London teasers, gravestone news, etc.

A few odds and ends have been piling up here at Tomes in Progress central- lets clear out the inbox, shall we?

The London Boxed Set cover?

Stuart Boon at Cubicle 7 has been dropping ‘hints’ of a less-than-subtle nature that a kickstarter for the long-awaited London Boxed set is close at hand.  This is a mockup of the cover.  Awesome.

Time to start setting aside a few pence so I can afford whatever deluxe edition they offer.  A pre-bloodied tube map?  A pass for the reading room at the British Museum?  A genuine brass hackney medal?  The mind boggles and the wallet cowers in fear.

I’ve done a little research regarding the subject of the gravestone photo I posted recently.  I can’t wholly confirm it, but it seems likely that it was the footstone for one James Hayward, killed in a duel just after the Battle of Concord on April 19, 1775.  Oh, that little dust-up…  His remains were moved to Acton center and buried at the monument there.  Nifty.

I’ve also updated my RPG CV, updated the list of 2013 Lovecraftian RPGs, and added some entries to the Yog Wiki about privately published CoC books.  Next time, I hope to have more to say about my playthrough of Horror on the Orient Express.

Missives from the Brain Cylinder of the Silent Ombudsman

A Mi-Go Brain cylinder (from Propnomicon)

Sorry for the delays in posting; events, as ever, have kept me busy.  Now on with the news round-up…

The Gaming Grunts have begun a play-through of Realm of Shadows, the Pagan campaign.  It’s an enjoyable listen to a lesser-known campaign; additionally, I loaned their Keeper Jeff Okamoto my copy, so it is nice that some of my books are getting used.’

Also in the auditory realms, the busy CoC beavers at the Miskatonic University Podcast posted a new episode (the theme this time is Cthulhu Invictus, but they cover a lot of ground), and I get name-checked.  Apparently Keeper Murph… or was the John?… think that I’m just a brain in the jar; (see around the 22 minute mark).  [Buzz Buzz {{statement of disbelief}} buZZZ]  They also say some nice things about my graveyards page; I should do something with that… Thanks guys.

Dean Englehart, of the Cthulhu Reborn website has begun a series of interviews with CoC authors; so far he’s talked to Brian Sammons and Stuart Boon. It’s a good series and worth checking out.

The team working on the revamped Horror on the Orient Express have started a blog- http://orientexpresswriters.wordpress.com/.  Definitely worth a look.

In book news, Chaosium have announced a publication date for Atomic Age Cthulhu and the suspicious Mr. Dan Harms has been asking around the YSDC forums about what readers might like out of a Boston Sourcebook.  We should keep an eye on that one.

That’s enough for now.  TTFN.

NecronomiCon Kickstarter and Bass Rock

Two news items:

A Rocking Bass?

The folks running the revived NecronomiCon have started a Kickstarter to cover their early expenses.  If you’re interested in this convention for all things Lovecraftian, take a look.  They’re offering a plethora of interesting treats for donors.

Cubicle 7 have released their first PDF scenario- “The Ballad of Bass Rock“.  This was a scenario cut from Shadows Over Scotland (due to length).  I’ve added this to the 2012 Lovecraftian RPG release page and will check it out when I have the time.  I suspect it will be of the same high quality as the rest of Stuart’s other work.

A boon from Boon, Stuart; FoCoLoCo news

That was easy; when asked about the status of Cubicle 7’s other Call of Cthulhu products, Mr. Boon replied:

I can tell you that I have received the completed manuscript for Cthulhu Britannica: London, yes. So watch this space!

I have also received the layout proof for ‘The Ballad of Bass Rock’, the seventh scenario from Shadows Over Scotland which had to be cut when the book ran long. I’ll be able to say more about this soon.

We also have writers working on two other projects, but those will have to remain secret for the moment.

To which I say, “Excellent!”  I hope at least one of those in development secrecy is the hinted at new unspecified Northern British County sourcebook.

In other news, while I can’t say anything more on the topic, at least not until the publisher does so, known serpent (owning) man Dan Harms has mentioned the following regard Forgotten Corners of Lovecraft Country Vol. 1 (aka “The Aylesbury Book”):

It’s moving homes. More on this as it develops.

More indeed.  No matter what happens, my scenario “Shadow Alchemy” will see the light, ha ha, of day somewhere.


Turkey, Folklore, etc.

What’s Thanksgiving without a sentient cyclopean mutant killer chicken?

The Holiday season looms large before us here at WinstonPville but I’ll try to keep up my breakneck pace of posting to the blog.  Here’s hoping your holidays, assuming you are in the U.S., aren’t overly awful.

The coming winter season means I probably won’t be doing any cemetery visits until the thaw (not that I was jetting off to many recently; I’ve been to all the nearest ones so it is harder to swing in a quick jaunt with the homunculus).  I need to get back to updating my graveyard maps…

On the gaming front, I have a little news.  I currently owe two different people writing, both of which I’d like to get done as soon as possible.  Ditto for my revision of an article I submitted to the Unspeakable Oath, which definitely needs a rewrite… but that one does not have a pressing deadline.  I have also, slowly, been doing some research for an unannounced project… ooooh, nebulous!  Toss in a couple 1/4 baked ideas and some notes and you have my current gaming work in a nutshell.  No, I have no news about the Companion.  Sorry.

In other news, the members of Yog-Sothoth.com have taken up our annual ‘Secret Shoggoth‘ gift exchange.  I’ve entered, as usual, and look forward to seeing what I might get this year.  Always seem to end up with a good book to keep me entertained over the holidays.

Finally, good news from Cubicle 7: the long-promised Folklore sourcebook has emerged from the hazy fog “in development” into the land of “in layout”.

Here’s their video…

Which isn’t nearly as informative as the text description:

Cthulhu Britanica: Folklore presents a uniquely British vision of Lovecraftian horror where fairies, witches, and folk traditions intertwine with the dreadful, eldritch powers and otherworldly terrors of the Cthulhu Mythos. The book features:

  • A folklore bestiary, including fairy folk, shape-shifters, giants, little folk, black dogs, dragons, water horses, bodily horrors, and much more
  • A folklore calendar and a new 1920s profession—the folklorist—for players
  • Detailed sections on using folklore and folk magic for Call of Cthulhu Keepers
  • And nine Folklore Mythos threats that can introduced into any scenario or campaign, or used as single-session scenarios

Hopefully the behind-the-scenes staffing issues at Cubicle 7 have now finally resolved and they can get back to making high-quality Call of Cthulhu books.  I wonder what the status of some of the project they outlined before Angus Abranson and Sarah Newton departed.  I notice that that World War Cthulhu seems to have gone with the later to become Achtung Cthulhu… wither the London Boxed Set?  Perhaps I should email Monsieur Boon?



ENnie winners, Kickstarter, again

A couple of items I wanted to note-

First off, I guess I have pretty good taste, as both Liber Fumo (aka the Occult Guide to London) and Shadows Over Scotland won gold at the annual ENnie awards presented at GenCon.  It was a good showing for Lovecraftian gaming overall, with this excellent pair joined by Kevin Ross’ outstanding revamp of Cthulhu by Gaslight and several PDF only products from Pelgrane.  Congratulations to all.

I also should mention there is yet another Kickstarter… really an avalanche, no?  This time it’s Chaosium, raising money to do an expanded box version of Horror on the Orient Express.  Of course, within about a day they have already raised in excess of their goal of $20,000, suggesting there is a wee bit of pent-up demanded.