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Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Dark Deeds Sample Chapter

My main project during August was a book of character backgrounds for D&D called Dark Deeds. It came about while I was working on a separate project for DM's Guild, when I found myself wanting to generate backgrounds and personalities for some stock NPCs. I had originally intended to use character background options from the Player's Handbook, but none of them really got into the darker options I wanted for these characters.

With that in mind I decided to write my own set of backgrounds. I thought it would be a nice small project that I could complete in a month. And, for the most part, I was right - all the writing got done within the first week or so of August. What I stumbled on was the art.

Anybody who knows me knows that I love tattoos and tattoo art. Something I've been seeing a lot of recently are very illustrative, tarot card-style designs. I really love the aesthetic of them, and I wanted the art in this book to be heavily inspired by these tattoos I've been looking at for the last few months. I also figured that it was a fairly simple style to draw, which meant that I should be able to generate the art for myself.

Obviously I was wrong. This kind of artwork is intricate, and I was unprepared for it. It's taken me a lot of time and effort to create art that I'm happy with, and I'm still not entirely finished (I have one piece left to create, and then I can publish the book). Still, I think it's worth the wait, and I've learned a lot while putting this project together - both about the actual act of putting together a book for commercial release from concept to execution (which I have done before, but not for a few years), and about my own limitations and the ways in which I need to budget my time when working on things like this.

We're now nearly half way through September. I'm hoping to get this book out next week, but that leaves me with little time to produce something new this month. I'm going to do my absolute best to get something out, but I'm also aware that I'm starting my postgrad studies next week. Still, although my progress on this has been slower than I expected, I'm happy with what I've produced and that I've actually followed through on something. And I've been keeping up with writing Golem, too, so while it's not the start to this new leaf that I would have liked, it's still a start.

If you're interested in seeing the Doomsayer chapter from Dark Deeds, head over to Loot The Room.

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