'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is on Kickstarter

Friday, 31 May 2019

Gamebook Friday: The UK Games Expo 2019 is here!

And I'm there! All weekend! So do come along and say "Hello!" and pick up a signed copy of NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! while you're there.


at Stand 2-640, in Hall 2, on CMON Avenue and close to Keyforge Street. You won't be able to miss it, because there is a huge NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! map covering the table and a banner with a dinosaur battling a sabretooth tiger behind it.

Click to enlarge

You will also be able to buy copies of Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland and The Wicked Wizard of Oz, as well as NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! dice trays and playing cards, and hardbacks of YOU ARE THE HERO Parts 1 and 2.




Wednesday, 29 May 2019

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas: Reward Formats

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is now funding on Kickstarter!


'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is a rules-lite RPG, designed to be picked up and played with minimal preparation. It is inspired by the legends and literature of Christmas, as well as the ACE Gamebook 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas.


The RPG is available in three formats, PDF, softback and hardback.


You can also pledge to receive print copies of ACE Gamebook that inspired the RPG.




The Early Bird rewards are only available until Monday 3rd June 2019, so don't delay and make sure you place your pledge today!


Tuesday, 28 May 2019

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas: Early Bird Rewards

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is now funding on Kickstarter!


'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is a rules-lite RPG, designed to be picked up and played with minimal preparation. It is inspired by the legends and literature of Christmas, as well as the ACE Gamebook 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas.


In case you were wondering, the Yule Cat and Nutcracker rewards are actually the same, the only difference being that the Yule Cat is an Early Bird reward that is £5 cheaper than the Snowman.


The same is true of the and Evil Elf and Reindeer rewards.

These Early Bird rewards are only available until Monday 3rd June 2019, so don't delay and make sure you place your pledge today!


Monday, 27 May 2019

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is now live on Kickstarter!


'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is a rules-lite RPG, designed to be picked up and played with minimal preparation. It is inspired by the legends and literature of Christmas, as well as the ACE Gamebook 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas.


In 'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas, the players take on the role of various toys, brought to life by Santa Claus, so that they might save him from Krampus, the Christmas Devil, who has abducted the jolly old elf. What follows is an epic adventure, that will take them to the arctic wilderness of the North Pole and, eventually, into Santa's workshop itself.

Written by Jonathan Green, and illustrated by Tony Hough, 'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is ideal for a festive gaming session with an established group, or even as an alternative to the games usually played on Christmas Day.


And remember, if you back within the first week, you will receive a £5 Early Bird discount off the basic Print Book Code rewards.



Thought for the Day

Click to open.

Sunday, 26 May 2019

Dracula Day!

In case you didn't know already, today is World Dracula Day.

People have been asking me for a while, "What's your next ACE Gamebook going to be?" I'm sure I'll get asked the question more than a few times next weekend at the UK Games Expo.

And the answer?

Saturday, 25 May 2019

Short Story Saturday: To Cut A Long Story Short

May is Short Story Month, and this year, for the first time, I have compiled a list of all the short stories I have had published over the years. As the month draws to a close, I thought I would share some of the insights I have gleaned from the process.

First of all, I have not included the colour text I have written for Games Workshop - including Codexes, Army Books, and even Epic 40,000 - or the same that I wrote for Hogshead's Realms of Sorcery. Although these could be considered short stories, they were more pieces of flash fiction, and so for the purposes of this record, I am considering The Hounds of Winter (from Inferno! Issue Zero) to be my first published story, even though the first one I actually wrote for the Black Library was the Ultramarines story Salvation.

In the 22 years since The Hounds of Winter was published, I have written 58 short stories, of which three have yet to see print, and am currently writing my 59th. They can be roughly divided into different periods as well.

For the first 10 years I pretty much only wrote stories for the Black Library. Then I started writing short stories set within my steampunk world of Pax Britannia, which continued for the next 10 years. However, it was also during this period that I began to expand my range of stories and where they were published.

Having worked for Abaddon Books, writing the Pax Britannia series, editior Jonathan Oliver commissioned me to write a ghost story for the horror anthology House of Fear. I was also asked to write tie-in fiction for World War Cthulhu and the video games, Nazi Zombie Army.

From 2010 to 2013, during a period of particular turmoil in my life, I wrote some of my more unusual experimental stories, such as telling stories backwards, and one which was written entirely as an exchange on Twitter. Some worked better than others.

In 2014 I wrote the first of four Judge Dredd short stories. By now I was regularly being invited to write short stories for various anthologies, and continue to receive one or two such invitations a year. In this period I have written stories featuring Sherlock Holmes, inspired by Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and set within the same universe as H G Wells' The War of the Worlds. These last two stories are both due to be published this September.

However, more recently, I have started writing stories for a setting I have not visited for some years, and the first of these is due to be published in October. So watch this space...

And two years ago I started self-publishing some of my short fiction as eBooks, most notably my sequel to Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, entitled Scrooge and Marley (Deceased): The Haunted Man.

Friday, 24 May 2019

Gamebook Friday: 'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas and the UK Games Expo

I'll start with the second one first. This time next week I will be at the UK Games Expo, at the NEC in Birmingham. You will find me and my ACE Gamebooks* at Stand 2-640, here:


One of the books that won't be on sale there this year is 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas, because (a) I'm currently compiling the play-testers' comments, and (b) it isn't due for release until the autumn anyway.

That said, while I am at the UK Games Expo, I will have a new Kickstarter campaign running, to fund production of a rules-lite traditional roleplaying game inspired by the 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas gamebook, called 'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas.


It's something of a first for me. While I have crowded five ACE Gamebooks to date, I haven't tried crowdfunding a traditional RPG before, and I'm going to be using DriveThruRPG to deliver most of the rewards. What this means is that people will back to receive a Print Book Code and when the book is ready, they can choose whether they want a softback or hardback version, and pay print and postage costs accordingly. And if you back within the first week, there is a £5 discount on the basic Print Book Code reward options.
And talking of 'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas, I will be taking part in a Q&A session about the RPG, on the Random Worlds chatroom, on Wednesday 29th January, from 7:30-9:30pm BST/1:30-3:30pm Central time.

Maybe I'll see you there, but in the meantime you can find out more about 'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas, and read a sample chapter on Character Creation, here.



* And the few remaining hardbacks in my possession of YOU ARE THE HERO Parts 1 and 2.

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Today is International Sherlock Holmes Day

Today is International Sherlock Holmes Day, which is celebrated on 22nd May each year, because that was the date of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's birthday.

Despite being a big influence on many things I have written, most notably the Pax Britannia series, I have only actually had one Sherlock Holmes story published*, and that was last year in the anthology Further Associates of Sherlock Holmes, edited by George Mann and published by Titan Books.

If you would like to find out what happens in Sherlock Holmes and the Beast of Bodmin, a story that is narrated by Sir Henry Baskerville, you can order your copy of the anthology here.





* Although I do have plans for another Sherlock Holmes-related project, which I hope to start work on in the next couple of years. 

Monday, 20 May 2019

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas launches one week today!

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is launching on Monday 27th May 2019. Inspired by the ACE Gamebook 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas, it is a darkly festive, rules-lite, traditional RPG, that is ready to play straight out of the box.

One Christmas Eve, Santa Claus is abducted by Krampus, the Christmas Devil. The only ones who can help him are a group of toys, brought to life by Santa's magic.

'TWAS - The Roleplaying Game Before Christmas is being illustrated by Tony Hough and the majority of the Kickstarter rewards will be fulfilled by DriveThruRPG. And if you back within the first week, you can get a £5 discount on rewards offering print book codes.

So put the day in your diary, and hopefully I'll see you next week, over on Kickstarter!


Thought for the Day

"Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable."
~ L. Frank Baum

Friday, 17 May 2019

Gamebook Friday: ACE Gamebooks at the UK Games Expo 2019

Two weeks today, I will be at the UK Games Expo, which is being held at the NEC just outside Birmingham. The event runs from Friday 31st May - Sunday 2nd June, and Saturday 1st June sees the official launch of NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! (although it will also be available on the Friday).

You will find me at Stand 2-640, in Hall 2, on CMON Avenue and close to Keyforge Street. You won't be able to miss it, because there will be a huge NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! map covering the table and a banner with a dinosaur battling a sabretooth tiger behind it.

Click to enlarge

I will have all three of my ACE Gamebooks so far in print for sale, and some exciting news about a new project as well. And I may even have a few hardbacks of YOU ARE THE HERO Parts 1 and 2 with me.

So if you're coming along to the UK Games Expo, do stop by Stand 2-640 and say hello. Maybe I'll see you there...



Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Happy Birthday, L. Frank Baum!

L. Frank Baum, the author of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, was born 163 years ago today. In fact, he died 100 years ago, on 6th May.

His classic of American children's literature has inspired all kinds of re-imaginings, from movies to TV series and musicals, and my own dieselpunk-styled gamebook The Wicked Wizard of Oz, which is even an exhibit at the All Things Oz Museum in Chittenango, New York, where Baum was born.

If you've not read The Wicked Wizard of Oz yourself yet, you can pick up a copy here. You will also find a list of errata and some bonus material here.


Monday, 13 May 2019

Thought for the Day

"How To Be a Writer:
Awaken to sound of birdsong
Emerge from scented boudoir
Don silken writing pyjamas and special writing hat
Call for parchment quill pen fresh squid ink gold leaf
Small nap till tea time
Have butler bring crumpets, jam, baskets of kittens
Write lies all day long"

Thursday, 9 May 2019

Happy Birthday, J. M. Barrie!

J. M. Barrie, the author of Peter Pan and Wendy, was born 159 years ago today. More recently, of course, I was inspired to re-imagine his characters and their story as an adventure gamebook, in which the island of Neverland is populated by more monstrous reptiles other than just one giant crocodile.



NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! goes on general release on Saturday 1st June and you can pre-order your copy here.


Monday, 6 May 2019

Thought for the Day

"How To Be a Writer:
Look into the abyss
See the abyss looking back
Tell the abyss to take a running jump
Tea"


Friday, 3 May 2019

Gamebook Friday: 'TWAS the Kickstarter Update before the UK Games Expo

Which is a convoluted way of saying that I have news about 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas, Kickstarter, and the UK Games Expo.

To begin at the end, just four weeks from today I will be at the UK Games Expo. I'll actually be there for the whole weekend, so if you're around do stop by Stand 2-640 and say hello. You won't be able to miss me, because my table will have a huge map of Neverland on it.

And now to jump back to the beginning, this week I sent the play-test version of 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas to those Kickstarter backers who pledged at the Stuffed Stocking and Secret Santa reward levels, which means I'm on track to get the finished book to the publisher by the end of the month, so that it can be out in time for Christmas.


And talking of Kickstrater projects, the crowdfunding platform was 10 years old this week. I didn't launch in the UK until October 2012, and I crowdfunded my first project in December 2012. Since then I have launched a total of 10 Kickstarter projects and 8 of them have funded.

But I find myself in a strange situation at the moment. With all the physical rewards for NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! sent to backers*, and the eBook due to go out soon, and with Beowulf Beastslayer and 'TWAS - The Krampus Night Before Christmas in the hands of others, at the moment, for the first time in a long time, I don't actually know what my next Kickstarter project is going to be, or when I'm going to launch it.

I have plenty of ideas for potential projects, it's just a case of making a decision with what to go with next. I could go with one of two different ACE Gamebooks, or a new non-fiction project, any of which I would probably launch in October. However, there is also a potential role-playing game, which I could even see myself launching in time for the UK Games Expo.

So, if you were me, which one would you go with next?



* If you've had a chance to read it, please do post a brief review here.