Due to the vagaries of real-life timing winning out over planning, my 100th post in From Kuroth's Quill arrived uncelebrated as my compiled (and still far-from-comprehensive) bibliography for Lenard Lakofka's D&D writings. Given Lenard's recent death (about which I still have a memorial post in draft), it didn't seem the right time to crow about much of anything at all, and is another hash-mark against 2020 that began back in January with my post in tribute to Rush's drummer, Neil Peart.
So, this will be my semi-celebratory and semi-reflective piece about the ongoing writing of this blog. 'Tis a rainy, grey afternoon outside, which is more conducive to writing and reflection than most, so here we go!
From Kuroth's Quill - grodog's Vision vs. Reality
My blog masthead proclaims,
"From Kuroth’s Quill" is grodog's regular design column covering the elements of adventure design (and more-specifically dungeon design, given my interest in that topic). I will also wander through the design of spells and magic items; monsters, traps, tricks, and treasures; PC and NPC classes; planes and pantheons; and likely other topics as well. In the blog, I hope to provide practical examples that will be useful in campaign play, to show theory in action.While From Kuroth's Quill remains more sporadic than regular than I'd prefer, and while it's not always 100% focused on AD&D and/or Greyhawk, it's generally remained on-target, although I've certainly focused more overall on general dungeon design than on creating specific content for AD&D or Greyhawk.
Here's a breakdown of my posts by year, as well as some high-level topical analysis for them:
- 2020 - 25 posts YTD = 2.08 per month (counting this post, assuming I don't write another one in-between ;) ), with posts in 11/11 months YTD (100%)
- 2019 - 27 posts = 2.25 per month, with posts in 9/12 months (75%)
- 2018 - 27 posts = 2.25 per month, with posts in 8/12 months (67%)
- 2017 - 22 posts = 1.83 per month (but I began the blog in April, so that's really 2.44 posts per month), with posts in 6/12 months (50%)
My writing has obviously declined slightly in frequency over time, alas, but it has remained relatively consistent and is increasing in regularity on a monthly basis, which I suppose counts for something.
The topics of my posts remain a bit more all-over-the-map, but the main categories based on my tags include:
- mega-dungeon - 25
- Greyhawk - 21
- module - 18
- adventure - 17
- design - 17
- campaign - 16
- Gary Gygax - 13
- grodog's Castle Greyhawk - 13
- kellri -12
- mega-dungeon mondays - 12
- Castle Greyhawk - 11
- Rob Kuntz - 10
- Tales of Peril - 10
- World of Greyhawk - 10
There's obviously some overlap among the topics, and if I was more curious I'd also break them down by number of posts per topic per year to play out the trends of the topics, but I'm too tired to do that--today, at least.
Prospects and Retrospects
I have 54 additional blog posts currently in various states of draftedness, which stretch back from today to the dawn of the blog.
them are convention reports I'll never complete and should just delete. Others are reviews and pieces about reviewing standards---I got my start in RPG professional design writing reviews for Pagan Publishing's The Unspeakable Oath, Pyramid when it was a print magazine, and various others including Dragon during Erik Mona's Paizo tenure. I'll likely complete the wrecked/incomplete
remaining entries from Kellri's September 2018 challenge as I incorporate both Court of Ardor and D3 Vault of the Drow into my current campaigns. Various unfinished "From the Vaults"
pieces about Greyhawk rarities, and other topics around
mega-dungeons, Greyhawk, my campaign, et al. will queue over time, too.
Completing more of these---in particular the pieces about my Shadow Master class (part 1 of which appeared in the final issue of Knockspell), since some folks continue to remain interested in reading the rest of it---would be a good idea, I'm sure.
Other topics I'd like to explore, reflecting on my masthead with 20/20 true sight:
- I have some posts about the role/function of traps and tricks, as well as designing enigmas/"special" encounters that I'd like to dig into (although Trent Smith is covering these very nicely in his ongoing development work for his AD&D Companion/Heroic Legendarium, too)
- I continue to work on planar materials for my campaigns, and am trying to design content that helps to support lower-level planar play in particular (Anthony Huso's Zjelwyin Fall may also see play at the table sooner vs. later in one of the two campaigns)
- The campaign has further rounded out some details about gods active in the Greyhawk-Gnarley-Narwell-Hardby-Maure Castle region of my central Flanaess, including Hextor, Wee Jas (since retiring my elf fighter/magic-user, I'm also playing a paladin of Wee Jas in Bill Silvey's ongoing Monday night Greyhawk campaign; we're about to enter White Plume Mountain!), Zagig/Zagyg himself, and the Old Faith Druids and Bards
- Whip up my AD&D dragon house rules into more-final shape, including the expanded NPC personality tables I created for them, and it wouldn't hurt to complete work on other rules pieces too: my revised/expanded DM log/screen and monster multitudes come immediately to mind; some of these projects would be for the blog, but others like the DM log/screen are intended for publication
- Incorporating non-TSR adventures and city supplements into Greyhawk
If anyof the topics above (or otherwise---who knows where the winds of Greyhawk-inspiration will drive us all!) jumps out at you with particular interest, please comment below and I'll try to align my inspiration and writing accordingly.