Saturday, November 2, 2013

AAUO Progress Report 11.2.13

Work on An Age Undreamed Of has recommenced after an effective hiatus of a few weeks. To be honest overcoming the inertia of idleness is a bit of a hurdle, so the restart is a bit more sluggish than I'd hoped. In the context of where the project is, though, I may as well tell you a little bit about how the draft is structured.

There are three parts to the rules, of roughly equal size. The draft of Part I, Characters, is complete. This has the rules for character creation, the races and classes, the rules for how to buy skills and the descriptions thereof, and how to use some features of the character, like Drives (which are AAUO's narrative-focusing tool.)

Part II, Systems is what I am working on now: rules for actions, combat, injury, healing, character advancement and a few miscellaneous things. It is the bulk of the "game system," and while it is already designed in outline in the form of some notes that would be indecipherable to anyone else, there are many fine details that come out in the writing. In a couple of cases this has meant going back to make slight changes or additions to Part I.

Part III is essentially an appendix in two parts: firstly equipment lists, summarized charts and that kind of bulky thing that's better put in the back of the book. The rest of it is stuff that's needed for the game to be complete but which will eventually get broken out into separate books: the Sorcery system and a brief bestiary/enemies list.

I'm also planning an introductory section which will run to a page or four, and a designer's notes section for the end that will include an Appendix N, for example. I have no intention of even starting any of that until some future draft.

Part I runs about 9,000 words, so I am guessing that the whole draft will run to about 30,000. That's not a goal, just a vague guess as to where the total is going to land. Part II looks like it may be half again as large as Part I in terms of word count. And in any event future drafts, with for example less skeletal text descriptions of classes, will be longer.

Today I got about 700 words done, mostly in the combat section, plus the armor chart. I hope to get some more work in before the day is out.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Progress and Intentions, November 2013

There will be no Inspirations post today; this has been an extremely difficult and even toxic week, and it's a miracle to have achieved what I have. Those keeping up with me on Google+ or reading A Linux Journal will have some idea what that has been; setting up a computer specifically for productivity and with minimal distractions. The good news is that this is now done, so I can dive back into work on An Age Undreamed Of. (And my other creative projects in due time, but AAUO is at the front of the line right now.)

It's also November 1st... which means that it's National Novel Writing Month, abbreviated NaNoMcWahWah or something like that. I will not be participating, since a) AAUO is not a novel and b) it's already a third done in draft. Nevertheless, I have it in mind to set a like goal, which is to draft the other two-thirds of AAUO by month's end with an eye toward commencing proper playtesting some time in December or January. Totally doable, and with less word count than a novel; 1,000-1,500 words a day will get me there my month's end very easily.

My new draft files (I've changed from MS Office to LibreOffice) are set up and I'm ready to start adding words to them. Time starts now!