Friday, June 28, 2019

Back Issue Restocking and Potential New Issues

This past week I revisited the 13 issue run of Loviatar. I did things like remove dead links via the QR codes and fixed funny formatting issues brought about by the installation of a new version of Publisher. I hope to have them available for sale in a few weeks to those few individuals who missed the run.

     I am also tinkering with new issues. I developed material via The Tolling of the Great Black Bell single sheet that might be a fun read in a polished, expanded format. I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Loviatar no. 13 Map Sale

I need a few more days with the "sloppy copy" of Loviatar no. 13. When I'm done with final edits, it'll be time for printing and mailing. The issue is looking really good and it feels great to have it so near to completion.

     In the meantime, I wanted to make the map of Clara Houston's home (She's the queen of Las Vegas don'cha know) available for purchase. I'll make sure to sign it and enclose it between to rigid sheets of cardboard. The map is my original pen and ink scribble, so perhaps it might be of interest to someone. As my wife says, "You just nevah evah know."
Alas, the map, she is gone.

Monday, August 20, 2012

It Needs More Work

Hey friends,

The last several weeks have been pretty crazy. I had surgery that knocked me a little loopy. Heck, Loviatar no. 13 was written in a Percocet haze. A new school year has begun and with it comes lots of stress, hard work and running around like a headless chicken.

Loviatar no. 13 should be going out in the mail this week, but I am not happy with the issue. Like I said, it was not written with the clearest head and I feel it needs more work. For example, I want to add conversion notes so that you can port the Lords of Creation NPCs into Basic D&D/Mutant Future. I would also like Jay Penn to work his magic. The issue was not going to have any interior illustrations and that felt...wrong.

Therefore, there will not be an August issue of Loviatar. It depresses me to do so, but I think it's best. My attention and energy for the zine has dipped a bit, so I think that a month off can only bring good renewed vitality and interest. Look for a tentative mailing date of Monday, September 17.

Talk to you soon!

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Cast of Loviatar no. 13

Jay has done an incredible job of capturing the cast of characters for Loviatar no. 13. The issue presents a jumping off point for a Lords of Creation campaign in the form of a quirky, unforgettable cocktail party. Characters will have an opportunity to meet NPCs pulled directly from television, as well as a few of my own creation. An elf from the hex crawl will even make an appearance. The new issue will be in the mail by August 20. 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Eleven Days

Friends, we are eleven days from seeing Loviatar no. 13 sent on its merry way. All edits are finished, which means it's time for layout and a final walk-through. This issue is going to be very fun, whimsical and should be the first time anything has been published (in print) for Lords of Creation in a very long time.
     Loviatar 14, 15 and 16 will be used to present the Freecity of Haldane. The material is 80% finished, but needs a bit of polishing. I had thought about publishing the city in a whopper of an issue, but I think that three, twenty-page installments will be sufficient.

     After Loviatar 16, the future of the zine is hazy. I have things I want to write about and notions of how I want to do so, but as I have said many times in the past, the formal format of Loviatar is not the way to do it.  In the next week or so, look for a little side project to spring up. I think it will allow me to finally marry rpg content with mail art, something I have wanted to do for a while now.

The End Game

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Title Page

I am working on the title page for Loviatar no. 13. The first few pages have also been written and later today I will crunch my first ever Lords of Creation stat block. I think that in the past I was a little hard on Tom's game. With the passage of time and the ensuing tangling with rules light games that don't feel that way at all *cough*FATE*cough*, I have a newfound appreciation for it. 

     And yes, it's a darn shame I cannot print his issue in color. It'd be so fun!

     Speaking of fun, I think it's very easy to go overboard with Lords of Creation. While I could create something that was full of moon sharks and cowboys riding dinosaurs (and there's nothing wrong with that), I always try to write with sustainability in mind. I can only do absurdest gonzo for so long. Taking the lessons I have learned from playing the Storytelling System, I am going to do my best to create an environment that is magical and wondrous, yet playable longterm.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Queen of Las Vegas

I change my mind a lot in regards to the zine, but I guess it's because I like to kick an idea around for a long time before putting fingers to keyboard.

     At any rate, I have this recurring dream where I wander through house that has a nonsensical floorplan. A cocktail lounge next to an indoor pool and there are hallways that have been converted to bathrooms for convenience. It's odd and a little unsettling to the newcomer, but great fun and perfectly natural for the people who live there. I sketched a house inspired by my weird dream and thought that perhaps a self-styled Queen of Las Vegas could own it. 

     Clara Houston wasn't always the monarch of the desert. She used to be a researcher in a cryogenics lab. After her fiancee was killed in a car accident, she attempted suicide by sealing herself in a cryo-tube. The attempt was unsuccesful, but when she emerged Clara was not the same. Strange vistas opened before her and she realized that the power of the cosmos would be hers if she could continue to open her mind to the limitless possibilities of creation. Yeah, Clara went all "Lords of Creation." 

     Clara was supposed to be built for Villains and Vigilantes, but I think I like her more as a gracious, foxy host whose home is visited by the various NPCs that have appeared in the rag. "Hey, get those potato gnomes out of the pool and why is that vampire from Santa Fina making sexy eyes toward Lt. McCollough? Is that werewolf poop on the floor?! That does it! Every body out!"

     Nothing is set in stone until I drop the issue off at Office Max, so we'll see where this goes.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Krang! Sh-keen! Take that, evil doer!

For Loviatar no. 13 I am dusting off a system I have not used since 1987 - Villains and Vigilantes. I have been reading a lot of comic books lately and have been terribly inspired. I looked at Mutants and Masterminds (too many rules), ICONS (FATE and I do not get along) and Supercrew (cute, but needs a bit more meat) and finally decided on the Jeff Dee/Jack Herman classic.

     I am working on a cruel vigilante with a compelling story named - wait for it - Loviatar. It's about time this zine's title and an NPC shared a name. As with most material in the rag, I doubt I will get a chance to use her in play, but she is fun to think about.

    I am experimenting with using Google Drive (an upgrade of Google Docs) to work on the NPC write-up and stat block. At some point, I'd like to share the document with one or two trusted readers of the zine who might be interested in proofreading it. I have been relying too much on Scott and Matthew and thought that they could use a break. If you are a True Believer with an eye for typos, let me know. I think that you will need a Google+ account, as there are some nice features that integrate between Drive and Plus. For example, you can comment, co-edit, etc.

     I am not sure what the other articles in no. 13 will be. For now, I am just trying to finish Miss Clara Houston aka Loviatar.

Ads that presented an NPC complete with stat block. Brilliant.

Friday, July 20, 2012

I Shall Not Fix What Is Not Broken

Sometimes I think a bit too much about the zine and find problems with it that don't exist. Today I looked at my personal collection of issues, noting the layout, contents and tone. While doing so, it occurred to me that the zine is fine as is. Certainly there are a few things that give me pause for concern, but none of them are so serious that they would require a change in format and style to fix.
     Instead, I'm just going to keep on keepin' on. In the next few days I'll post a bit about the tentative line-up for no. 13.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Any Day Now

Final edits are being done on Loviatar no. 12, so it should be ready for the mail next Wednesday. This issue will mark the zine's first birthday, which pleases me greatly. As you will read in the issue's intro, there will be some exciting changes for issue 13 and beyond. 

     I feel the need to free myself creatively in order to escape from the traditional style of presenting game content. Loviatar is a fanzine, but it has often felt overly formal and constrained. Interest in the zine has been a little wobbly for the past 2-3 months, so trying to emulate Dragon each month doesn't make a lot of sense.

     I want to inject perzine elements, as well the frenetic style generally associated with the format. By doing so I think I'll not only have a lot of fun, but Loviatar will no longer look and read like other rpg publications. I am really excited for the next year and am happy to have you along for the ride. :)

Monday, July 2, 2012

More Jay Penn Goodness

Copyright Jay Penn, 2012

Jay sent the cover for Loviatar no. 12 to me and I love it. I really hope that you like the characters it depicts, Old Gerald isn't quite the werewolf he used to be, but at least his rebellious granddaughter Cambria breaks him out of the old folks home from time to time for a walk in the woods.

     In a few months Jay is going to be selling the originals to the artwork that has appeared in the zine. He is very excited to be offering a piece of the zine to the readers. Personally, I may have to angle for a potato gnome illo!