Hack, Slash, Cut, Thrust

I’ve been roleplaying since shortly before the great flood and come across a lot of RPG systems that handle task resolution in many and varied ways. One of the big ones is always the combat system – even in rules-lite games the combat system is (usually but not always) more complex than the rest of […]

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HS1098

He was a strange figure, a dull lumpish creature that the locals knew only as Trog.  Whether that was the name his parents gave him or simply an unpleasant title dreamed up by the people around him nobody knew.  It was the name he called himself though and his unfortunate neighbours would often hear him […]

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Sounds of the City

Alma Deutscher is now fourteen years old. She’s already been somewhat of a sensation for her musical talents and they show no signs of abating. In this new piece she takes inspiration from the discordant sounds of city life, including traffic noises, sirens and general cacophony and creates a series of waltzes. In the opening […]

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Accio World

We all know about lightning.   That sudden searing flash of light and heat, an instant release of energy that thrills the onlooker in its immediate and glorious destructive display, so quickly over with it needs an accompaniment of drum-roll thunder to keep the audience alert for its reappearance.  It’s magnificent at a distance, terrifying when […]

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Truth or Consequences

This is probably going to be a pretty unfocussed post.  I apologise in advance for that, but it’s a subject that annoys me so much that I get distracted by shield-biting rage every time I try to think my way through it.   I’ll just jump in and swim to the far shore. I am fed […]

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Here we go…

Just a short update on my current work. I’ve completed my novel The Crow Journal and sent out samples with query letters to a small number of agents in the right genre market (and choosing that was difficult – is a novel set in 1850s London, that involves elements of mystery, magic and teen angst […]

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Muse

The pen scratched on the page.  The words crawled slowly in the wake of the nib.   They were weak and empty things, and there was no life in them.   I looked down at what I had written and sighed.   “It was a dark and stormy night…” A trite sentence, the latest in a series of […]

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Hither Came Conan

A strange admission for someone of my long tenure in the worlds of fantasy and science fiction, but I’d never actually read Robert E Howard’s Conan stories before. I know they’re almost archetypal examples of the genre but for some reason I’d never got round to picking them up. That changed recently, when I bought […]

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