Summercamp 2022 Preparation

In the Summer, a need to write swells within the author's breast
In the Summer, the dedicated seek themselves a diamond crest
In the Summer, prompts guide as would light from a lamp
In the Summer, a worldbuilder's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of Camp!
— RPGDinosaurBob, with apologies to Alfred Lord Tennyson
It is once more the time of year when thoughts of Anvilites turn to summer... and Summercamp! This will be my third Summercamp experience since joining the World Anvil community, and as I begin my third year of efforts related to the World of Cartyrion, there is still much to do - and many places ways in which the Summercamp experience can be used to improve that world.

Much has happened over the past year with regard to how I plan to bring the World of Cartyrion to life not only for myself, but for others. The Feywood Region is closer than ever to being "completed", though there are still some specific holes that need to be filled. I have developed and playtested a number of adventures to bring TTRPG player characters through that region. Thanks mainly to last year's camp, I have opened up the Kingdoms region as the next big area of attention. I have also completed the first draft of the first book in a trilogy set in the world. This first book identified a few other "holes" in existing parts of the world, and my plans for Books 2 and 3 will require whole new parts of Cartyrion to be devised.

Last year, I used Summercamp as a means to open up the Kingdoms region of the world, and succeeded in laying down some excellent groundwork. This year, I would like to use the Summercamp experience to fill in the the gaps that remain in the existing regions of the world so that these regions are brought closer to a "publication-ready" state.

Creative Goals

With this in mind, I can identify a number of Creative Goals which are tied to the ultimate objective of publishing specific products related to the World of Cartyrion. which I hope to satisfy with some or all of the 31 Summercamp 2022 prompts that will be released in July. These are listed here, in no particular order since I cannot predict which prompts will find their "best fits" in any of the targets.

Completing the Feywood Region publication
This publication will contain everything a TTRPG group needs to explore and adventure in the Feywood region of Cartyrion - including a series of adventures that will take a party of adventurers through the region. At present, many of the settlements in the Feywood have been documented (complete with NPC shopkeepers, town elders, etc.), but a few still remain to be written. Depending on the prompts themselves, the Expanse, and possibly Leadership challenges may help to get the few remaining holes filled in.

There are a few "special sites" - ruins of an ancient Taxlatl city buried within the fens, for example, that also need to be created. Perhaps the Exploration prompts will assist here.

Finally, a small Bestiary is needed to describe the Fey themselves, as well as their Gremlin counterparts -- something I am hoping the Monstrous themed prompts will let me focus on.

Groundwork for Book 2
My plan is to complete the first draft of the second book in my Cartyrion series during the month of November. I have good ideas as to what will be happening in that book, and these ideas will require that I begin to develop several new countries and regions on the Cartyrion map. In particular, though, I will need to start thinking about significant leaders in these new regions, and so I hope that the Expanse and Leadership prompts will provide the opportunity to get started here (though there will likely be opportunity for the other themes to contribute as well.

Motivation

Explaining my motivation for these targets is simple: I want to get the Feywood materials published, and the second book written and eventually published.

Challenge Goals

My primary challenge goal is simple: to complete all thirty-one prompts and thus earn my third consecutive Diamond Badge.

Knowing myself, this effort will result in approximately 60,000 words of creative writing. But July is not only Summercamp time, it is Game of Tomes/Tourney of Tales time! And as the ruler of House Sauropoda, I have an example to set - one made all the more challenging by my 100,000+ word performance in April. Thus, my second Challenge Goal is to once more complete 100,000 words of creative writing. Ideally, this will be done by using many prompts twice: once in the Feywood and once in anticipation of Book 2.

In order to help keep myself focused and on track for these goals, I also plan to stream on Twitch every day in the month of July. I am already keeping a 7-day streaming schedule; but during July, all streams will be devoted to writing and worldbuilding. Completing this will qualify me for Iron Gorge recognition.
I Hereby Pledge...



...to participate in World Anvil's Summercamp 2022, and to make every attempt to complete articles for all thirty-one prompts within the month of July at least once, amassing 100,000 words of new creative writing as I do so. I will make every effort to focus the attention of these articles on either missing portions of the Feywood, or groundwork for the second book of the series I am working on, or both. Finally I resolve to stream a portion of my efforts live on Twitch each day in the month.
— signed by RPGDinosaurBob on 06 June, 2022

The Themes in Detail

Summercamp Homework Week 2 asks me to describe how I hope to work with each of the four themes to meet my personal and challenge goals.

Expanse

The Feywood Setting
The Feywood is a vast, ancient forest dotted with small, relatively new settlements. While I've done a lot of work on the settlements, the forest itself still needs some development. Who - or more specifically what - lives there? What can be found there by adventurers? What about the two great lakes (large enough to be inland seas, actually)? Finally, where are the marks of the Great Strife still visible, and what dangers lie in hese regions?

The Books
The first book in my series sees the protagonists journeying through well-established areas, but in books two and three, they will be venturing beyond the civilized parts of the world. What are the dark northern forests like? What of the lands of Tyrnabay and beyond that still bear the marks of the Great Strife? There are many vast - and dangerous - expanses to be crossed in order for my heroes to complete their quests.

Discovery

The Feywood Setting
The Feywood is ancient, and though the Alev People (the elves) have lived there for thousands of years, there are still places where no Folk's foot has tread. There are many more places that still feel the touch of evil left after the god-war two thousand years ago. An ancient Taxlatl city lost in the swamp... Alev settlements destroyed and abandoned long ago... To make the campaign setting attractive, I need mysteries to entice adventurers.

The Books
Besides the thrills and dangers of traveling to and through strange parts of the world, Book Two is all about the protagonists discovering themselves. The characters must grow from youthful, unsure "nobodies" into the leaders the world needs, and to do this, they must first discover, and then master, their own hidden talents and powers. To do this, they will need guidance, and those guides will need to be developed.

Leadership

The Feywood Setting
I've already built out many of the mostly human settlements that have been established in the Feywood, but I have not developed much at all about the Alev (elves) who have lived within the forests for thousands of years. Who are their leaders? And what of the prominent figures among the Fey who also call the forest home? A few among the "greater" Fey need to be identified and described. Their relationshships with other Fey, the Alev, and the Folk who recently begun to make the Feywood their home can be explored.

The Books
Book Two will be all about encounters between the main characters and various leaders of communities, cultures, and cults as they do what they can to deal with the worldwide catastrophe that is on the brink of occurring. And Book Three is all about dealing with those that were really behind everything that's been happening. There are many Leaders - political, religious, and cultural - that need to be brought to life.

Monstrous

The Feywood Setting
When it was first created, the Feywood was a home to nothing but beauty and joy. But thousands of years of meddling by gods intent on interefering with the works of their rivals, have seen some of that beauty twisted into dark, malicious forms. The Gremlins share the forest (reluctantly) with the Fey and Alev -- they need to be brought to life. The Great Strife brought its own horrors to the peace and tranquility of the Feywood as well, some of which lingers thousands of years later.

The Books
There may be a horrid creature or two in the future of the main characters, but the biggests monsters they will face are of the "civilized" variety. Book Three will be all about them, but some have been introduced in Book One and others will appear in Book Two. All need to be developed. The organizations they lead must also be developed; these organizations may not be "monstrous" in whole, but they do have dark sides.

"Do The Meta !!!"

Doing "the Meta" for Cartyrion has always been challenging, since it is a world of many regions. Each region is intended to have a different feel - to appeal to players and gamemasters looking for specific settings, moods, etc. for their games. Each region really does require its own "meta" treatment. So now, since finishing the Feywood is one of my objectives, it's timet to lay out the goals for the look and feel of the region. "The Meta" behind the book series is a bit more complex, as it's more than the regional looks and feels, but it, too, needs to be dealt with.

The Feywood

The Feywood, and the larger area around it called simply "The Frontier Lands", is a somewhat hopeful place. The folk there have made a life for themselves far from the structures and strictures of organized nations and religions. While the Alev (the elves) have been here for thousands of years, most of the other folk are relative newcomers seeking more free and independent lives in "the wilderness".

In the Feywood, one is surrounded by beauty, hopes, and dreams of a peaceful, prosperous future. There are obstacles, of course - and more than a few "baddies" that need to be overcome, and some places where the stain of the ancient god-war still shows, but these are challenges. Adventurers in the Feywood are looking for excitement and enrichment as they make the world around them even better.

The Books

Book 1 starts out in the Feywood, and introduces characters who fit that scene: common folk looking to settle into a good, comfortable life among their friends and family. But this is not to be! They are drawn into a dark, foreboding world of gathering doom - the threat of another god-war. They must learn who they are, and what they are capable of, faster than they would like. As the story progresses, they move into other regions of the world where the challenges are quite different, and it is my intent to portray these thematic differences as they journey.

The Kingdoms are rife with politics, plotting, and subterfuge. The lands beyond the Kingdoms are harsh, wild places filled with darkness. There are lands ruled by brigands - pirate companies and cruel mercenary factions. And beyond that is a land where the lizardfolk - the Taxlatl - are striving to rebuild their ancient civilization. This is a land of strangeness and differences in culture that may be hard for the book's protagonists to reconcile. Overall, though, the characters have the wherewithal to meet their challenges, though they may doubt this from time to time. They must grow to succeed.

Inspirations

Inspiration has always been a complex concept for me. While I am certainly inspired by - and draw ideas from - movies, images, and music, I don't think in terms of "this picture inspires me to write that!" I don't look for inspiration in single clips; I look to set a surrounding mood to get me in the right frame of mind.

Music is perhaps the most important part of this. Not lyrics specifically, but atmosphere. Scenery and setting from movies form backdrops in my mind. As far as particular actions are concerned, inspiration can come from anywhere, including the antics of the play-testers working through adventures in my world.

When I think Feywood, I'm hearing Enya, Loreena McKennett, Celtic Women, and the many others that Pandora mixes into a "channel" based on these selections. I'm visualizing Middle Earth for the most part, with a little bit of Princess Bride and Labyrinth thrown in.

Inspirations for the book series are, again, a bit more complicated. Tales like the Lord of the Rings that speak of overcoming obstacles to "save the world" figure strongly. But other bits and pieces from diverse sources also appear. The CIty of Baron's Point is the Mos Eisley of my world - no space aliens, but the same hodgepodge of disparate cultures with different agendas... the same sense of being on the edge of lawlessness. The atmosphere brought on by secular and religious politics of the Kingdoms - which will feature heavily in Books 2 and 3 - is inspired by George R. R. Martin's Game of Thrones series. Characters coming to grips with their talents and abilities feature little bits of a young Spiderman sometimes mingled with a little bit of Deadpool.

The Plan

If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!
— source uncertain (and heavily debated)

The final part of homework prep for Summercamp 2022 is, for me, the easiest part of all since I've been thinking about it for months. The assignment is to plan and schedule my writing sessions, and to identify how I can get those around me to support my efforts.

As for the first part, my target is to complete at least one prompt per day. As I plan to be streaming live on Twitch every day at 9AM EDT for 2 to 3 hours, this will be my designated "write the words" timeslot. If the words get done, beautification will be tackled. Another three hours minimum each afternoon will go into completing article finishing touches, writing additional "support" material, and - most importantly - the first editing round of the book I completed in April. It's going to be a busy month!

As for the second part, I've found that I get tremendous encouragement from the community during streams, and will be relying on the WA and streaming community for support. My family knows that it's going to be a busy month for me, so they are being careful about at least asking me before planning any special events. So far, the calendar remains clear! I've got "leisure time" built into the overall schedule as well - the several RPG gaming groups in which I am a player will be meeting regularly, and I've got other recreation options available as well.

I have no doubts that it will be a hectic month. No day will go completely as "planned", but in the end, I am confident that my goals will be reached - and my sanity will be preserved.

No battle plan survives contact with the enemy.
— Helmuth von Moltke, 1871

Comments

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29 Jun, 2022 02:58

You: "Not my most detailed work,"   Me: *Finds a full on essay*   Your detailed work must be really impressive! Looks like there is a lot of good thought put into this. Good luck meeting your goals.

30 Jun, 2022 12:58

Thank you! and best of luck to you during Summercamp! May you reach whatever goals you've set for yourself.

Teams of turtles pulling barges... villages that appear and disappear overnight... check out the: Redflow River
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