Saturday, May 26, 2018

Fresh Blood

Kind of nice to have some 13-year-old enthusism for the old home world.

A friend's son is getting a little more enthusiastic over Jorune with the faint whiff of a d20 version. He interviewed me on his channel a while back, and we just did it again. Fun and pro-Jorune. Nice combination.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Just a moment...

I woke up today and stood up. Next to my bed and realized I was standing without the third point of support of wedging my calf against the bed so I could stand with a third point of support. I have needed a third point of support for a long time. A cane, a walker, sometimes surfing through the house using counter, chairs, table, washing machine... for support.

But for about a minute I could stand. I think it is a direct result of the surgery to open an artery in my right ankle. I will be having another surgery on the left side in a few weeks. If this is the result, I look forward to the next round.

I don't talk about it much on this blog because it is not the purpose of the blog. In reality, I have challenges that I do not think should be the measure of someone's interest in the projects. But I have to live with it 24/7. I did so a while back and I got an email, answered, and this charming reply.

"Since you have already told me about your health issues on numerous occasions, I am tired of you constantly bringing it up.  I get it -- poor Joe.  As if you're the only one with health issues."

Really? That's what you got from asking and me answering? Since we did emails for a couple fo weeks, the "numerous" is sort of a surprise, but ... So I opted to not discuss it more than a couple of times a year. I know some Jorunis with far worse situations, but ... oh well.

I like the progress. I hope it continues.

Continuing work on #11. Trying to locate one author, not even going to worry about interior art after the really groovy cover, so ... I might get it out to meet my self-imposed "deadline" of early July. 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Crash and Burn

Crash and burn time. Tomorrow I go in for surgery. Checked to find my account is at Zero - Duke Energy hit me for $102, which was completed from my tiny savings account (balance now under $6) and zero on the primary.
GoFundMe goal of $1600 has had one contribution, for $100. A friend sent me $100 on PayPal, which is how I will pay for the ride back to the house after surgery - if they let me out.
So, if you were thinking of helping, now is the time.
I'll be making a lot of changes based on the results of tomorrow cutting.
And if you get a post from Larry Adams, it will probably not be good news.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Benefits of Being a Packrat

Ce n'est pas la couverture de SSC #11
But very much like it
I had a small panic. The coming issue of SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL is themed as OTHER PEOPLE'S JORUNE.

I have permission from Fred Lang to use his amazing 3d Painting of a Crugar lost in Gilthaw for the cover. This is not the cover yet, but it shows the beginning of the #11 cover evolution. Wonderful piece of art, and it is about Jorune, too.

I found a lost module from legendary Jorune Second Edition author Geoff gray.

I have an adventure called PLAYING THE MARKET which does not have the author's information on it - don't know how that happened but sometimes it happens. Working on that.

I have a bunch of nuggets - little ideas that could lead to big expansions - from several people.

A then there was the Heridothian — a unique Play-by-Mail game in the late 1980s and early 1990s, where the players played city-states. I have one of the "moves" in my archive - about 20 pages of what that city was doing, conflict with other city-states and nations, news on the royal families or organizations, a bit of Heridothian History... it was fascinating.

And lost.

But I could not find my Heridothin material. With the problems of disk failures, attempts to consolidate old 3.5" floppies (remember those?) and backup CDs, I was sure it was there.

But I also have a project organization program called SCRIVNER and in some forgotten moment of sanity, I had gathered all of my Heridoth text and put them into the Uber Jorune project document. Everything I wanted and things I had forgotten were all there and ready to be pulled. So I have them all. I think there were some old maps, and I already published a wonderful 2-page spread some great spot illustrations from one of the Heridothians in the previous OTHER ARTISTS OF JORUNE feature. (I think there will be some redundancy allowed).

The Heridothians will finally get acknowledged.

Ce n'est pas la couverture de Sho Copra Joe
But very much like it
And a closing note. It was suggested that, when I finish the last issue of SSC, I should produce a single volume with my material - edited - for a print version. And I am thinking of doing my whole production other than SHOLARI v2n1, the GOMO GUIDES (Tan Iricid may still happen - this year), to create a collection of my writings for Jorune. I think the other authors deserve a cut of the pie and will try to come up with something for those who want it - a few people have already said they are happy just to see Jorune get a little more exposure.

So - I am thinking of that.

I have also decided to adopt a title. It won't go on my business cards — who would ask me for a business card. But I want to acknowledge my quarter of a century building a Jorune I remain very fond of, and recognizing that I am also a student and will always. be learning.

Sho Copra Joe. I'll use that for the rest of the run. Maybe my death scene will be well painted with romantic realism. But I suspect a cell phone photo with me on the ground after "oops" is much more likely.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Other People's Jorune

Working on SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL #11. It is themed as OTHER PEOPLE'S JORUNE and will feature a number of stories ideas that have been funneled to me over the past 25 years. Adventures and nuggets for the Sholari to adapt to her or his own group. Or allow your existing group to visit the world.

Sometimes a single line will inspire a whole romp. Years ago Chris Williams, editor of VERTEXT magazine, and Janice Sellers were playing in a Jorune game and we starting talking about trashy, mass-produced publications. Magazines, cheap books - like a Yule Dreadful series. Chris made an offhand comment about a pulp hero for kids - SLAM DESTI, BOY YORD.

My longtime roomie Richard Eide was in that game and came up with a comic book character among the yule dreadfuls called PIBBERMAN ("Do No Evil!"). In addition to some laughter around the it led to my development of the whole Mord Jalanor series, including SLAM DESTI (in SHOLARI #3), ALLIDOTH CONFIDENTIAL (an unpublished adventure which I ran in Colorado), and THE SCARS OF FAR TEMAUNTRO (in SHOLARI v2n1) and THE ANGELS OF DRAIL (SSC #5). I still want to do a. cover for PIBBERMAN.

One offhand comment that led to a few minutes of chuckles and then a series of characters.

I think the next issue of SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL will add to the mythos and may even help a new generation of SHOLARIS craft some new Jorune.

That is the hope.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Okay. I Give Up

After weeks of trying to get the cover done myself... I give up. I can draw, but for me, the finished art must come with a mood to do finished art. The thing that marks a professional artist to me is the ability to do the work, on a deadline, whether they feel like it or not.
I'm not.
But I was able to pull together. pretty good collage based on a couple of sources.
A volunteer editor in the UK helped me put together THE RED GATE for this issue, and by the end of this week, I will have THE BLUE GATE, an expanded nugget, together by way of penance.
I'm started on #11 - OTHER PEOPLE'S JORUNE. Should be fun, even for me.
I think I like the graphic for these last few issues. I like playing with graphics and this one will take me thru to #14. Or #13 at least.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Word From the Outside

How nice. A travel writer took the initiative and wrote a review for SHOLARI v2n1. It is exceeding kind and points out the biggest flaw - my word problems.
Cover of Sholari Magazine
The wraparound cover by Steve Devaney.

Some people use my typos as authenticators. That lets them know it is really from me. he says I make typos, and leave words out sometimes. But, such is my legacy – and not just in gaming.

Go there, to that. I consider this to be a good review. Even my typos are given some kindness.

Available from

And Steve Devaney, too!

I wanted to include Steve Devaney's cover for SHOLARI v1n2 in the previous post. He has had the right feel for Jorun illustration for a long time.

But Blogger wouldn't let me add it. Screw 'em.

Look for more from this gentleman. Maybe music. Maybe more kids. Maybe line art. Maybe adventurous 3d model which evolved to the meticulously painted electronic cover of SHOLARI v2n1. And it includes a shipstone with the memorial statue of The Desti, the ca-Desti leader of the Eelshon, who led the assault in the Lamorri expulsion.

Other People's Jorune

This one makes me want to sing the
lyrics of "Let it Be." (The Beatles).
A meditation skyrealmette.
I have been sitting on a little pile of nuggets from many Jorunis in many countries. I have decided to pull them together for an issue of SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL. The Heridothians, Geoff Gray, and a handful of others. Should be interesting.

Crashing Skyrealm
I am also looking at the whole "Sky Realm" thing. For me, the first flying land was a cheesy original musical for THE SHIRLEY TEMPLE STORYBOOK series around 1960. There was an episode called "The Land of Green Ginger" which was a mountain that flew. In the 1970s  Roger Dean did covers for Yes and others with flying mountains. It seems to be a cross-cultural archetype. Kind of like Angels - they aren't "gods" and there has been an enormous body artwork featuring them in Western Art, but they are there in other cultures, including the body of work with people who did not write anything down. The very story serves a purpose and, I suspect become a source of hope. Or comfort. And I do not want to bad-mouth anything that offers hope and/or comfort.

I'm just typing to fill out some layout space on this page so I can which includes lots of pictures of tiny little skyrealms from the internet. Some of them had names like 23598712355436.jpg, so I don't have a catalog of artists or sources. But with the Jorune to hang them on, I wanted to share. Join me as I jabber.

I particularly like the one I've labeled as "Crashing Skyrealms." It fits into my goal of exploring the new world. Not all Skyrealms stay in the air, though stable realms might float for thousands of years on a known trail of ambient Isho energies keeping the Ebba lode within charged. But when the charge is depleted - what happens.

I think like this artist showed, there would be descent that is sometimes dramatic (such as the crashed skyrealm from the Larmorri Expulsion, as described in SHOLARI v2n1, Scars of Far Temauntro. Sometimes is it would be almost graceful, with a mountain entering a ravine - not perfectly matched - and the tons of stone would press down, grinding boulders (some of which would float away) until there is a mountain with sorely mismatched strata and properties. And an enormous heart of empty crystals that had held the Ebba from which the whole levitated.

An Ebbe "seedrealm"
you could hatch on a
window sill.
And on the right a sketch. I don't know who the artist is. I just popped up.

Something like this rock makes me think you could find a crystal - not perfect clear quartz but a silicon structure within other metamorphic stones. It might be ready to fly, or cracked and not quite able to leave home on its own. Still, held by threads of Ebba trapped in silicon that connect it to the rest of its own flesh. It may be there for decades. The Ebba will leak out but the stone structure will remain.

While there is Ebba within, putting it near a fire might make it struggle to lift as you watch, and understand.

It just makes me think.

Thinking about Jorune is, I think, good for the mind. Stress relief. Vacationing in my brain since the body will not let me travel. Finding new things.

My tweak of Max Parrish's
great Deco style.
And a lot of that is visual for me. In the 3rd Edition SOBAYID ATLAS, I wrote about "ship stones" that were small - a few yards across - and were on the brink of levitation. Ebba crystals are triggered by heat, which is why Desti is so important for the controllers on airships. In the morning, when the sun reaches and warms the stone, the ship stones rise higher.
Dawn on the Shipstone

 On the left here, just a painting I found somewhere or that someone sent me within the last decade. Very cozy little shipstone. I'd unroll a sleep bag there for a long ride.

If their charge is too low, they may spend the night actually laying on the ground. And with those high root and peak structures, they aren't going to settle down in a level stand. They may stay connected to the ground for the whole night - giving a freeloading passenger a chance to hunt up a little breakfast (careful you don't miss your shipstone when it rises because it will be out of here...).  During the day they float, higher on warm days, and at night they sink. 

Alan Okimoto's acrylic,
messy, modern skyrealm.
Jorune has made me think. I will miss it when the SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL runs its course, which will be Issue #14. It may be under another name, but it will be SSC #14.

I have an image in my head I would like to find a realistic artist to execute. Ebba. Pockets of the flowing Isho lava deep below the ground. Lava heating the Ebba. Somewhere on Jorune there are volcanos where the Ebba flows up into the sky. The silicon cools and becomes a crown of floating stones that drift away on the Sho-Caudal - the Isho Wind. Some are like old tube TVs, some are like large earthmoving equipment (which they ear). Some become parts of enormous clouds of baseball sized debris, some are more inclined to come crashing down.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Segment: Sho-Caudal #9

Breather Reco, or the first picture of one.
SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL #9 is just waiting for a read thru. The dominant presence is THE RECO REPORT, with details on how Recos are programmed from a cork, examples of the most common Recos, with an extensive background on Incupods and Corks (which is where little recos come from), a passing notion to Genons, a cork programmers checklist.

And way too much OTHER ARTISTS OF JORUNE - Part 2. Either one would have been good enough to fill a standard issue - this is FAT.

I'm playing with a Reco that has been mentioned but never illustrated, the Breather Reco. It plays a part in THE RED GATE, which will be in SSC #10.

And I've started playing with how the Colonial Authority recruited people to leave their worlds in the United Planets and Colonies to a backward world like Jorune. The original campaign to "Leave Your Word Behind." Not sure when that will be ready. Maybe in time for #11.

There is also "Other People's Jorune" with nuggets that have appeared in my email box over the years. Thought you might find that interesting.

I do.

But, as soon as get the Reco article examined by the head of genetic research at Vanderbilt University, I will send it out.


Oh - afterthought: When #9 is out the 6-month subscription option will go away 10-14 is the foreseeable future, and that isn't even 6 issues. The full subscription at 12-issues will include back issues and I will find some mechanic that allows advance on #13 and #14 (only two people actually subscribed thru #13 (a single issue followed by a 12-Issue subscription). #14 is because I did a real screw up and I extended their subscription one issue. They will be fatties, too, so the subscription thing will run its course. And after the sub will be different, and therefore evil.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Back to the Salt Mine

I was distracted by reality, but I'm better now and able to deal with my favorite delusion. And dang, if this keeps up my tombstone might read "Death by Enthusiasm."

Back to work on SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL.

I've been working on issue #9 and the feature is the "Reco Report" - which is turning into Topsy.  "I wasn't raised, I jes' growed."

Read a book.

This has become just two more pages, just two more pages, just two more pages...

The issue already has "Other Artist of Jorune Part 2" which is larger than Part One (and is also part the last), so it was already larger than any previous page, but I added six more pages to the Reco article, just in lists for the would-be Bio-tec artist.

And Issue #10 is really almost there, so it could be released as so as I clear the big hang up.

The big hangup?

Me doing art. I have decided on one image for cover and the splash of THE RED GATE, the interior black and white, the exterior, color of the same scene. I can do them. I just think the world would be better served by a real artist. This is a simple editorial evaluation of the work - the evidence of past art by the artist, regardless of who it is.

Bleh. But I seem to be horrible enough I can't get artists to work with me more than once – and I'm still not sure why that is.

I wanted to be a comic book artist, and I drew a lot. I really fell in love with 19th Century and early 20th Century illustration styles. I took classes - I am taking an online course to improve my drawing while I am fighting doctors and creditors in this ugly world, to create scenes from the dreamtime. I get a tiny warp that allows me to peek in on everyday life on Jorune and it is not always dramatic or action-packed.

Walking Home with Mom.
Sometimes it is just about walking home with mom, under multiple moons, with someone on a balcony, lost in their thoughts, And a friend who seems to know Mom - a Corastin guard.

This illustration is probably my favorite of anything I've done for Jorune.

I try. I might even get a passing grade on this one - the original is floating around my house somewhere - it deserves a better scan.

What is bringing this up is doing Part 2 of THE OTHER ARTISTS OF JORUNE and seeing my work alongside the work of people I consider to be real "artists." David Ackerman Robert Smith, Chris Lackey, Fred Lang, and others. Some of them are far from the style of Mile Teves, who set the tone from the first edition, but they are true to themselves and to the world. Marc Diebedour, Harold Ogle,  and more.

It may sound like flagellation, but it is not an exercise in self-hate - it is an assessment. And inventory.  I do consider myself an artist, a writer first but as an artist second. I am not as skilled in illustration. I do graphics. I tweak and repurpose old graphics. I do logotypes and Mastheads. I color black and white art. I love maps and floorplans. But I do not create compositions and execute final pieces of usable art.

"Walking Home With Mom" has features I like with bare cartooning skills. There is a sense of gravity - which I think is important. Mom and the boy are firmly rooted to the ground, and the Corastin on spot, in repose, seems to be weighted - and if he stood up he would dwarf them. I would barely be able to fit through the wooden door. And you can tall it is a wooden door. There is a little scragger running alongside for no particular reason. The dreamer on the balcony is abstract, but of the world. I think I lost it in the sky, the lack of consistency in the skylines makes it less satisfying. And I have republished it before with the top section lopped off.

December 1994, it says. 23 years ago. Time flies. And my frustration grows. First at being unable to get artists to work with me, and then at my inability to bring the scenes I see in my head to the page in a recognizable form. I think I am a good art director, I know what is needed. But I am not able to create the final art required - even for a little fanzine newsletter like this.

Showing the Scar
"Showing the Scar" is an exercise in frustration. It was intended to be a sketch to give a real artist to show what I had in mind for a scene near the end of "Scars of Far Temauntro" in SHOLARI V2N1. It is a collage from some 19th Century snips with Jorune tweaks. A Shantha showing the pit to two Corastin and ... someone ... with vodra in the sky with three moons. I know what time it is, with the sun in the far morning sky.

Couldn't get an artist to work on it. So I printed it out in blue to ink, like a comic book page (I have the technical pens required for that). But it was too dark to ink and have the illustration dominate. So I did a second version which was used on the SSC #2 cover, in conjunction with Steve Devaney's monument floating on an islet in the Scar itself.

Hopefully, someone will take pity on me and do some art I spec for the last few issues of the SHO-CAUDAL project. If any artists out there would be interestign to taking on an assignment, maybe for the inside, maybe for a color... contact me.

I should talk about that, too. But not now. Now it is too late and i need sleep. Issue #9 will be finished tomorro, then the editing, and I can't get editors to work with me, either. So I will do my best and people will complain. A lot. But I will try. I think I caught the typos in this post, but I'm too tired. I'll look at it later. And if anyone reads this and want to give me the edits, it would be appreciated. (Does anyone read this?)

Only five more issues to go.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Something Afoot

And it's my toe. My podiatrist says the toe gets to stay on the foot - for the moment - so I am less distracted than I was three weeks ago. I did a Plumfund page to cover 16 unexpected medical appointment and costs - and so far have raised almost exactly half of what was needed to do everything, but I am up to #8 on the scheduled appointments...

And things go on.

Back to SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL #9, THE RECO REPORT. I've been planning this for quite a while and have a good deal of information on CORKS, INCUPODS, and RECOS. This includes the basic information for anyone interested in that form of Bio-tec, including detail on cork cutting (programming), the real role of the Busk, and the programming outline to design your own Reco for fun or profit.

SSC #9 will also have THE OTHER ARTISTS OF JORUNE, including incomplete galleries of George Barr, Janet Aulissio Dannheiser, our own Steve Devaney, Alan Okimoto, and more (including my own artwork, with some embarrassment).

Number Nine will be a nice, fat issue to make up for the delay. I don't feel I've really fallen too far behind. I promised 16 pages a month and at least one issue a month. This will be eight issues in six months, and the page count to date has been:

   Issue 1 - Lamorri, plus - 17 pages
   Issue 2 - Day War, ORFA, Conversions and such - 16 pages
   Issue 3 - Heretics and for writers, Jorune or not -  22 pages
   Issue 4 - Jorune Cartography - 21 Pages
   Issue 5 - Angels of Drail, opening chapters - 17 pages
   Issue 6 - Warp Mechanics, The Mes Dig, Tables for Goodies - 16 pages
   Issue 7 - The Lattice, Kolo-Dissal*, a timeline of parallel worlds - 16 pages
   Issue 8 - Sharden, Other Artists of Jorune, Part One - 16 pages

Issue 9 - Reco report, Cork programming, Incupod Maintenance - 48 pages I type this, so I'll probably cut that down. But to this point - 141 pages, plus whatever the page count of #9 turns out to be. Call it 40 pages, so 181 pages going into the seventh-month averages to 25.8 pages per month. Above frequency, above page count - I don't feel bad taking care of my medical reality.

The issue after, number ten, will complete THE RED GATE, of which elements have appeared in several issues of SSC. That will be #10.

I'm not sure how I'm going to wind this up. There is material. I'm sitting on a bunch of stuff Heridoth based on a play by mail game at Oxford — the one in England —where the players ran city-states and came up with some really good ideas. I have original art from Miles Teves I don't think I ever published anywhere, so there's that. A bunch of people gave me nuggets for adventures, and I'd like to get those out in the world.

And the big one. I had a campaign I ran for a stable group (at least a regular - with those personalities... stable?) for about eight years, with a six-month break while I was out of state. I called it CHILDREN OF BOMOVERIS, and it linked a grand unified conspiracy that shared the powers of Boveris' blood, active earth-tec from the Desti Station, the powerful houses gathering against Dandrenn in Kirlan, and opposed by an equal force led by the Seraphim Guard, Shantha, the united Iscin Races, with human mutations (including Muadra), Cleash and Scarmis in the middle. And the middle is where the action is. A secret Earth-tec colony in the jungles of the Western Trinnu, five children of the revived Karl B from his Keeper Rod... It was a romp that had it great, satisfying closing firefight (with many kinds of fire) in one of the High Houses in Kirlan. No ray guns, but dyshas, automatic pistols, arrows... and the system we evolved together got the action going during the fight where it was just go, Go, GO!!! Almost combat in real time.

There were several people there at the finale who are still in touch with me. I think it is a proper exit blast. THE CHILDREN OF BOMOVERIS. SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL #14.

I had big dreams when the RETURN TO JORUNE started, and a few nightmares along the way, but I need to wrap this up. Paid subscriptions to SEGMENT; SHO-CAUDAL only go up to #12. I made a couple of errors along the way and as make-good, I'm committed to #14, so 14 is the swan song. And thanks for all the fish.

I'm not saying I'll never do another Jorune, but I will never again be this public or focused on that world.

The collection that may happen one fine day.
I have two in various stages or readiness - THE COMPLETE DANSTEAD TRAVELLER and THE COMPLETE BORKELBY'S FOLLY. SHOLARI JAMES pulled out in favor of having control to present his material, his way, and on his timetable. My own GOMO GUIDE: TAN IRICID are on the to-do list in 2018. they are in that order as to readiness. In fact, as soon as I get a cover and can convert all the English measurements to metric, I'm good to go on DANSTEAD. BORKELBY needs some work - permissions and organization. Someone suggested I gather my own work in one volume - not a 2018 priority, but it is possible. And TAN IRICID could be ready with just a little work. Some of it has been appearing in SSC, but so few people see if I could release the whole thing to a new audience with no qualms.

This next SSC issue will be worth the bother. Maybe the rest of it will be, too.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

I have to go off topic for a post. I hate it, but that's what I've got to do.

I have had to put up a Plumfund page for Medical changes. Some people will think it is silly that I can't come up with the money - they pay more for rent. But, I can't, so I'm going public.

Sometimes, life sucks.

And now I'll go back to Return to Jorune posts on this page.

Trying to get the next issue of SEGMENT: SHO-CAUDAL up and out. I've been distracted.