Playing to Write

(C) 2020, JJ Shaun
Putting game tiles together to create a unique playing field.

I’ve been getting more into the heads of my characters lately. The introductory tale of this series of short stories centers on three young members of an uber-rich family. They get caught up in a set of circumstances they never, in their wildest dreams, ever imagined. Only one of the three has a clue as to what they discovered, and even he doesn’t grasp the full extent of the discovery—he is woefully naive.

Talbot has always had an interest in the dark side of life. As a child, he searched out the dark caves and basements looking for something, but he didn’t know what. Until one night, he came across a Faerie Circle and crossed into the Tegdylweth, the lands of the fey. He knew how the rest of the family would react to his adventure, but he didn’t care. He had fallen in love with the alien nature of the Tegdylweth.

Many of the stories surrounding this adventuring family will happen in places other than Earth as we know it. Events in the first story will take place on the planet we all know and love. The twins convince some of the more adventurous family members to help them explore the portal to the Astral Plane. Some will land in my fantasy world, others will fall in other realms. Some might arrive in an apocalyptic future, or somewhere I haven’t yet imagined. They’ll let me know.

Because some of the characters will land in places like the Forgotten Realms or Eberron, the stories will be classified as “fan fiction.” You will find the lot of them under the Fan Fiction tab.

For years, I’ve had the idea of a magical trap or something as a way of sending characters into different worlds and varying environments. It began when our group was playing our favorite game (DDO). The existing characters had reached the level that we began thinking about our “next life.” We talked about how those characters and their stories could tie into the existing account we were posting in the game forums. We bounced ideas off each other and wrote out parts of our transition stories, which I have in email.

I wrote that story with the intent of posting it with the help of the group I play Dungeons & Dragons Online with every week. Dreyah Alterian has been traveling Eberron with this group for almost two years now. The other writers and I think it’s time to tell their stories and how they relate to the first group of Stormreach Investigators. So far, we all have solid ideas as to how the new characters end up where they are and how they are related to our original characters.

We (me, “Sam,” “Drowsword,” and “Hazelnut”) far enough in the game where Hazelnut envisioned his character caring about past events. His entry point works for the rest of us, so I dug through email and sent our prior ideas out to the rest of the guys.

Because I’m the “writer,” I will be organizing this endeavor. I will try to keep the others on track. And because there are four of us contributing (can you say “herding cats?”), I can’t guarantee when I’ll be adding installments. Two still have careers, one is having a hard time getting his thoughts in writing, so I’ll be wrangling felines for a bit.

For the moment, though, I’m gathering information, polishing the content I have, and jotting down additional ideas as they run through my head. But atay tuned, I’ll have more on Talbot and the twins as they tell their tales.

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