Sunday, August 20, 2017

Too Busy to Blog.

I am doing the layout for Sholari v2n1 and am doing the radical thing of doing it SLOWLY. And checking back with the editor for certain questions. And letting it sit for a day or two to digest into the final form.

And forgetting to post in the blog. I'm busy.

Old Crosby Stills and Nash song I love - Long Time Coming.  And I view Jorune has a metaphor for succulents in the desert. It is dry, and there are needles to pierce you after long periods of drought. But one morning they bloom.

I hope it will be be worth the wait.

Sholari v2n1 is all about Lamorri, without a single Lamorri appealing. Sizzle. There's got to be a pony here somehwere. But two stories in North Temauntro.

I'm fighting with simple things. Copy point size. 11point with 13 point leading, or 12 point with 14 point leading. That kind of thing. The larger type is easier to read but will requie more page. It looks like about 60 pages, so .the decision has to be made.

But that is not all I am doing.

I am contining work on Segment: Sho-Caudal. Writing morefor  #3, maps and scale.  And an Invitation to Heresy. Wait for it.

And pulling together 25 years of notes for Gomo Guide: Tan Iricid. Knowledge. Secret Events. Thriddle history and culture. Thriddle schooling system. Detail for The Gift and the birth of the Sea of Cerridus.

And bits dribble out from time to time for the first SAK. Sholari Adventure Kit. This one is The Angel of Drail which gives details on Eastern Drail, Ponteeer, Earth-tec, and the Seraphim Guard. With cool toys for players to desire.

I juggle. I never do one thing at a time. But things get out. i work on one channel until it burns down. Peole want me to work on just one thing, but I have never been able to do that. "Think of what you could do if you just do one thing," they push.

Yeah, well where are your twenty plus stage play productions, and over 300 radio shows, about 100 of which were fully scripted and produced radio dramas. And two novels. And an anthology of short stories. And three issues of Sholari magazine - so far. And Annals of the Tan Soor Historical Society. And two versions of the first Gomo Guide to Thoneport. And several books on which my name does not appear, because it is part of my philosophical and spiritual life to do so. All by juggling.

So... shaddup.

And I'm juggling right now. Things are completing.  Reboot of Gomo Guide: Thoneport. Segement: Sho-Caudal #1, and #2 is already completed for mail out in September. And Sholari v2n1 will finally appear in PDF and I gird my loins for the fight to bring it out in print. And everything stays in the air, passing through my hands and occasional gets real and falls out of the juggle to reality.

When something hits the ground, another goes into the air. Like Sholari v2n2 with more about Warps than you may want to know. With two adventures, a full introduction, and a major caveat. Juggle juggle juggle.

In the desert there can be desolation and despair, and the water table may sink away, making a difficult existance more miserable. But then, one day, you wake up and the colors of the blossoms are beyond your dreams or expectations.

And I have to remember to just let it come and enjoy the hell out of it when it reaches reality.

Which will be difficult. I have some pretty strange dreams.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Tah. And also Dah.

The Giddyne is
your Invitation
Segment: Sho Caudal #1 is out to the Subscribers and the people who have ordered a single copy. PDF, in their email.

Actualy, OUT.

Segment: Sho-Caudal #2 (or SSC as we call it around the shenter) is already finished and will go out  in September. We will probably set a date and release the next on on that day of every month.

You could be receiving one in your eMail. All the details are at Segment: Sho-Caudal's home page. Single copy, subscription by monthly PayPal payment, or subscription by annual payment, PayPal, or other options.

And the last scan has been received for Sholari v2n1. You've seen the cover, and we hope the insides will delight your Jorune-lovin' brain just as much as Steve Devaney's cover delighted your eyes.

And can Gomo Guide: Tan Iricid be far behind.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Real, with and without typos (error corrected)

Subscriptions are coming in. Requests for Single issues are coming in.

Confirmations of where to SEND the PDF are not coming in. Someone was kind enough to send me the error message they got when trying to send their preferred email address...

Really?

Subscriptions are coming in. Requests for Single issues are coming in.

Confirmations of where to SEND the PDF are not coming in. Someone was kind enough to send me the error message they got when trying to send their preferred email address...

Joe typed an "r" in the wrong place on a page of HTML code. It's only about 80 lines, at 72 spaces per line, so one character out of 5,760 was not correct and people couldn't send me their preferred email address for delivery.

Really?

Does anyone know a good, working WYSIWYG editor for Mac OS or Linux?

Komposer has a no-contrast black on dark blue, none adjustable button scheme that I cannot read.

SeaMonkey no longer allows a "Find" when working in raw code.

Blue Griffon is a nightmare with the inability of its interface to interface. The version has a formatting bar that runs down the left edge of the window, with no way to scroll down (Paragraph formatting).

DreamWeaver adds so much extra, self closing <x></x> lines of code it becomes a real nightmare when trying to fix bits of HTML. I can't tell if it is just bad programming, or the suits trying to create evidence you have been using their program without paying. (I used it as part of the Adobe CC package, one, said bad words and have not opened it since. Worse than DreamWeaver 7.)

Amaya and Adaptana are just too clunky for me to use.

Programmers tell me "just use a text editor". I do not find that to be an effective workflow - I am not a programmer. I work in the design, usually with a split screen. Working "type-save-open-browser-reload-open-text-editor, repeat", over and over and over and over is NOT preferable to "type, look, type more". I can use a text editor, but it is not my native language and I do not 'see' what I'm doing.

Typing...

<center><ul><li>Fuck off and Die</li><br><li>Eat Shit and Die</li></ul><br><br>Really!<center><p>

Can be done, but I'd rather choose center, bold, words, next line.

It also takes much longer, and opens the door to typos based on a) Joe's history of typos, and b) neuropathy that does my touch typing without the 'touch' part.

I can move my fingers and, IF I am on the home position (which is not always the case) I hit the right letters. Fascinating things when I lose my home positions one key over, in some direction. (Even *I* notice that.)

I'm a civilian, not a programmer. And THIS error was in a text processor.

WYSIWYG? Either OS?

If it helps, SeaMonkey was my go-to for YEARS.

Or is there someone willing to volunteer to clean up any of a couple dozen pages I do a month?

Trade. Or Barter. (You have to be very old to get the joke there.)</h2>

Friday, August 11, 2017

Things Just Got Real...

Segment: Sho-Caudal #1 is through the first two rounds of editing and just went off to the proofer and the Troublesome Thriddle, who got a draft too early and also edited.

This issue is all about the Timelines. From the first weaving of a Dysha, to the Harpesr at the very beginning of the Thanterian age. That means through the Shanthic age, with a long ass war; The Lamorri Invasion, their abuse of Isho and Expulsion; the Colonial Era; The Human Shanthic War and Shyee (with details on Bomoveris and Iscin); and then the Harpers, as Thantier keeps the dream of Earth alive.

First issue. 17 pages. No plots, just words words words. Very few pictures. Other than four Pictures of Lamorri. Have you seen Lamorri before? Do you know about Lamorri. It is background in some things that are really 'published', but ... you might like knowing.

My personal review is "Less embarrassing than any other Jorune product I've ever done."

And you haven't heard me talk about my previous work, have you?

Four and a half ways to get it, one of which only partially connected to PayPal, and of of which is not connected to PayPal at all. Really. All the details are here: Segement: Sho-Caudal home page.

The four methods are subscription ($55 a year for at least 12 issues in the next year), or $5 a month for a year and a minimum of 12 issues), or just pick up one for $6. PDF, direct by email only.

SSC #2 is complete and will be out in September. SSC #3 is in the works.

Sholari Volume 2 Number 1 is complete and in layout. Really.

Like I said before - when it rains it pours.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

And closer...

Got word from the editor she will be done with the last couple of pages, very very soon. Like later today? Tomorrow?

So SSC will go live in the next day or so.

PayPal has been set up and I will announce the page to do that on one of the four access plans.

Sholari has started layout. The last of the art is being scanned by a friend today. Maybe even now. So it will go live in DTRPG for PDF immediately, and print as it becomes possible.

Gomo Guide: Thantier is advancing.

SAK: Angel of Drail, likewise.

---

I have to say I am really happy with a couple of harmonics.

SAK - Sholari Adventure Kit. Also, the first word Tars Tarkas said to John Carter in the book that launched me on this whole science fiction/roller coaster ride. I had read Heinlein and Norton juvenile novels in junior high, but A Princess of Mars was life changes. As was the first used copy o fsecond edition that I found at Gamescape.

THAT issue of SSC #6, D Bruce Berry
And SSC? Segment: Sho-Caudal? SSC was also the abbreviation for Star Studded Comics, a fanzine with amatuer strips in the early 1960s from the Texas Trio. They were original a ditto zine with a four color litho cover, but the first issue I saw was the stack of stapled pages called Star Studded Comix #6, with a cool color cover by D Bruce Berry. It was on the kitchen table of my friend Wayne Baldaros apartment in Burbank about 1965. SSC gave birth to Batwing, which gave us George RR Martin as a fanboy, and SSC also fostered many artists that would later turn pro. It was just after I discovered A Princess of Mars - later that same year, in fact.

The old days of magic for me.

So to be working on a new SSC is very satisfying. As is new meaning for SAK. And being back into Jorune.

All good.

And maybe new magic for someone.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Boom

When it rains it pours.

Okay, I asked about anyone remembering the old Segement: Jorune while having problems getting DriveThruRPG/DriveThruFiction to function to bring books to you PDF and Print. I follow their directions and am wrong for doing that. I use the template provided by Ingrham and am wrong. I make the changes they demand, and am wrong. So I wanted something I can actually DO, not talk about.

Boom.

Things fell together really fast.

The project is called Segment: Sho-Caudal. It is a PDF-only, subscription only newsletter. That translates as SOMETHING I CAN GET OUT rather than fight with the Print on Demand masters of ennui who want me to peel them another grape before they will accept files. No, not a purple one, a green one. Not that shade of green. Too small...

I repeat. Boom.

It is Tuesday afternoon. The first issue will be for sale and deliver by ... the end of the week.

Segment: Sho-Caudal #1 is in the second round of editing with one of my favorite editors, who really improves the product, and when she is done it goes to another editor who is serving as proofreader. And then it gets into PDF but before it gets announce yet another person is performing as Troublesome Thriddle (That's his title, don't wear it out) to eyeball it before it goes out. THEN it will be available. We are looked at a few days.

THEN there will be four ways to nab it:

  • Option 1 - Subscription through PayPal. $5 a month. Direct through PayPal. A minimum of one newsletter a month. 
  • Option 2 - Subscription through PayPal. $55 a year. 
  • Option 3 - Subscription not through PayPal, but by check to me, or through Facebook using the little "$" symbol in the bottom of their chat window. That goes through PayPal but does not reqire that you have a PayPal account. If that isn't good enough for you, get a stamp.
  • Option 4 - One issue purchase. $6. PayPal only.

Unpublished sketch of the
monument to The Desti
 Delivery is by email. When you do your PayPal you will be taken to page telling you where to send you email address for your subscription. Then I hit Segment: Sho-Caudal Subscribers in my email program and remember to attach the PDF and - boom. Again with the boom. I hope I remember to attach the PDF. But if I don't, I will eat crow and send a red faced "here it is" email.

And Segement: Sho-Caudal #2 is already completed and in the hands of the editor. And I mean, completed! Words, Artwork and everything.

There are a couple of color art pieces in the first two issues, but they are glaring and out of place. I have made the decision that future issues will us an old retro design of Black-Plus-One-Color, and I set up a color called Spot. I change that color once and it ripples through all the headlines of the issue. It was a very popular graphic style in the 1950s and 1960s, but now becomes a nice retro feel for SSC.

But - Boom Boom - Editor #2 just delivered all the text for Sholari v2n1 and while this background editing is going on with Segment: Sho-Caudal #1 and #2, I am doing the layout for Sholari Magazine, Volume 2 Number 1, and writing more material for Gomo Guide: Tan Iricid.

There is a clog in the pipe and when we get the clog cleared ... splush. There will be wet. Hopefully Drenched by Christmas and more wet predicted for the 2018 forecast.

I like all that.

SSC #1 is all about Timelines. SSC #2 is a mix, which includes the Thriddle's Debt and a new piece for what used to be called "Jaroon" (for the old folks).  And I already know what will be in SSC #3.

Boom.

Why am I not Sholari Joe? Because I am always a student. I teach, but I'm still a student. And it doesn't matter what world I'm on.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Remember the old Segment: Jorune?

Sho Caudal
Remember SEGMENT: JORUNE from the old White Wolf magazine? I've been thinking of doing something like that. My rolling notebook. I have 20 years of notes finding an outlet in Return to Jorune, but it is just making my juices boil.

For example I've been doing details on timelines from the end of the Shanthic war, to the arrival and explusion of the Lamorri, to the Tragedy of the Gift (yeah, it's coming), to the arrival of hoomanzie, Shyee and points up to last week, when the Dharsage Dandrenn's first grandchild was born.

And I'm thinking of a Sholari Joe notebook, or something like it. At least nine a year, probably more. Subscription as $5 per month. that would help my cash flow. PDF by email. In addition to the stream of project damming up behind the DriveThruRPG wall. Material from such a notebook will most likely wind up in a later product. If I stay alive, that is. (We can get the PDF up for sale almost immediately, but the print version will require a testicle.)

Maps. Historical details. Locations. Illustrations/diagrams. Dangerous stray thoughts.
20 people at $5 a month would make a significant improvement in my cash flow.

(Did you know Sholaris don't get paid shit, compared to your average aubrey stack cleaner who travels from farm to farm in rural North Khodre?)

So ... thinking about it. Anybody interested in such a thing?

I may take a steal from the past and do "Sho Caudal According to Dhar Copra Joe"... or ... "Dances with Shantha" or something, but the name Sho Caudal will be there.  (Segment: Sho-Caudal?)

---

I just posted this four times. I tried to copy a post from Facebook to put in the blog, but it came through with eight carriage returns instead of one, just as happened last week with another post. I deleted the other versions with the extra carriage returns - they weren't all that thrilling. But if you got more than one notification - sorry.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Broken Camel and the Straw

Really.

Is there someone with real world experience in dealing with DriveThruRPG. Tonight I got an email that has me ready to be in need of "film at eleven" and "he was always so quiet".

What has gone before:

I have been involved with Print on Demand for about ten years or so. DriveThruRPG has given "problematic" a whole new definition.

Annals of Tan Soor Historical Society
I did my first Print on Demand project with an outfit started by Ken Whitman, but he was already out of the picture by the time Annals of the Tansoor Historical finally arrived at my door, warts an all. My warts. Not theirs. Took one go-round and boom, it was done. That was 2006 - and I can't even remember the name of that company.

Recovery Ready, 2nd edition cover
Then I started using Lulu.com and Issuu.com for some books and a magazine, print and PDF delivery. Several titles there - I don't know who know. Simple Directions, Recovery Reader, Sponsor Magazine, Good Orderly Direction, The Work, and The Work Book ... several titles, several iterations. Not perfect, but better and better. I think all of those are still available through archive.org. Recovery Reader, 2nd Edition is my real flower out of that crop. Ditto, archive.org. So, seven titles brought to market. Not "no problem" but minor problems, quickly resolved and the publications were.

House of Angels playbook
A friend suggested I try CreateSpace for Amazon.com. Okay - and i got my plays The MAMA Law, Fever, Living int he House of Angels, and Assassins, all up in their system, no real problems. Novels - Climbing the Spiral Mountain and Song of Orphans, up, not real problem. Novella - Niall's Dream, up, no problem - less than two weeks from inspiration to book to sell. A collection of short stories The Taste of Fire, up, no problem.

I don't just do Jorune - and there are jobs I do for clients that I don't even list as 'mine', which are compelted, up, and more personal experience successfully getting books into the Print-on-Demand world - which have worked.

GOMO GUIDE TO THONEPORT, first version, Lulu.com, not problem, first attempt with DriveThruRPG. Problems. Got word DrivethruRPG now offers direct royalty payment for participants, so that moved it a leg up. It also accesses the audience I'm trying to reach with Return to Jorune titles. A few weeks of back and forth, but we got it up.

Thoneport Reboot
Started putting together Return to Jorune, got an artist and did a reboot of Gomo Guide: Thoneport. the troubles began. MONTHS of back and forth, then I couldn't upload files because DTRPG uses Flash, which I detest, but I set up one browser to use Flash and could upload. Five or six versions of files later, it finally went live.

I starting having several months of chaos with Apple, hardware and software, resulting in me getting a Windows machine which did not work at all (it may have been damaged in shipping), and finally getting a MacMini. But the upgrade of OSX to 10.12.5 meant I could no longer use the Adobe Creative Suite, on which I had come to depend. I got a client to include me on his Adobe Acrobat Creative Cloud for access to the same programs compatible, but ... that's what it took.

Cover by Fred Lang
Tried to bring my novel SONG OF ORPHANS to DTRPG, and after four months of no-go, nogo, No Go, Just Go I gave up. there is no SONG OF ORPHANS on DRTPG. And it looks like there will be no SONG OF ORPHANS on DTRPG. Part of the problem was DTRPG said for me to go to Lightning Print/Ingrahm for templates for the cover. I did. That was where the real pain began.

I contacted my rep with DTRPG, who was instrumental in getting the reboot of GOMO GUIDE: THONEPORT into the system, to ask if the cover I did for the forthcoming SHOLARI V2N1, without the Lightning/Ingrahm template from hell, would be acceptable.

He just wrote me to say that I had to reformat it for PDFX-1, not PDFX-2000.

I have NEVER used PDFX-2000, and I have been using Adobe Acrobat since version 1, 1993. This is not my first rodeo. And I have never chosen PDFX-2000, never, ever ever ever ever.

Never. Everevereverever.

And my camel broke. That was the straw. This is my broken camel.

Screen shot of PDF settings
I had chosen PDFX-1. I have a custom Distiller setting for PDFX-1 for DrivethruRPG, which is oddly enough not PDFX-2000.

Then he said they cannot say if the cover works until they have the interior pages? Really? The had no problem dealing with rejecting the cover for SONG OF ORPHANS - 8 times, without the interior.

Oh, side note. Lightning-Ingram template? You fill out a request, I asked for a 352 page book on white paper, 6x9. They sent me the template. I used the template. then it was rejected because cream paper is not in the options available for DrivethruRPG. I did not ask for cream paper. Where the choice says "Paper" the options were "White" and "Cream" and I chose "White. so i did it again, and they rejected it again. And again, then they said it had to be CYMK, which it had been but I regenerated a PDFX-1 PDF using CYMK on white paper, and they rejected it for not being white, but cream. And again. And stripped away everything to do it all from ground zero, and rejected again. And again again.

I have been going with DrivethruRPG because of access to their audience, and paying royalties to my editors, artists, and even other writers. I keep a slice for production, prepress, management stuff. but nobody gets anything if there is not product to go out.

So I pulled SONG OF ORPHANS completely. I cannot eliminate the project from my publishing files page, so I have files listed as "Go Away" - "X Song of Orphans" - "Do Not Use" so I don't accidentally get a rerun of the old headache.

AND there is a hardcover version of the book that failed. I did not order a hardcover version. I have done a hardcover version of RECOVERY READER, which is nifty and good to hold. And I have considered a casebound hardcover with dust jacket, but not just now. And certainly not through DTRGP.

So I am asking for help before I wind up on the News.

Does anyone know the simplest way to get from my computer to the sales list on DriveThruRPG? Even if it means starting from Zero. A different cover generator. A different layout generator. I'm willing. If I have a sytem, I can plug in the products piling up behind Sholari Volume 2 Number 1 to fit into that production process, we can start looking at a product a month. Not four months with NO product as a result. I will cut off some of the royalties in my publishing nightmares section. 

Help?

And I'd rather not wind up on the news. It's so hard to get the shotgun on the plane.

Part of the Map

Sho Caudal
I've been working on Gomo Guide: Tan Iricid in the background, but that also means I'm working on The Angel of Drail, and Gomo Guide: Ponteer. It is based on discussions with Andrew Leker, studying maps by Miles Teves, writings from Sholari James, and application of different physical sciences to the planet. A good deal of my understanding of Sho Caudal outside the major canon of Burdothian propaganda comes from maps.

I also did some meditations on the symbol that appears on Miles 2nd edition world map, or the world we know. It is in the lower left of that map and is the Shanthic symbol for what we call "Jorune". Jorune is an Earth word - the name of the astronomer who detected Jorune, about 140 years in our future (it used to be 160 years, but that was 20 years ago). "Jorune" is taken as a direct insult to Shantha, and there are certain people who like insulting the natives by insisting on using a word that is offensive to them to designate their own world. Kind of like calling the Shantha "aliens". Shantha do not separate the words for "world", "spiritual life", and the concept of "now". Humans seem to have a problem with that. And it drives Thriddle crazy.

But back to thoughts on future books in the Return to Jorune stream.  I did a map for Sea Of Cerridus. I did a color version, too, but it is too much to deal with all at once. Really pretty. That's why I think it would look nice on the back of three different books.
The foundation map for Sea of Cerridus

Part of this map will be on the back cover of Gomo Guide: Tan Iricid.

Part of this map will be on The Angel of Drail.

Part of this map will be on the back cover of Gomo Guide: Ponteer.

I know what Ponteer means now. It means "Shards" - broken glass. The "mountains" of the ithmus reveal something horrible happened in the past and there are straight line impact folds. Jorune is a silcon heavy world - hence skyrealms and crystals. Silicon becomes glass which heated, and brittle glass when heated suddenly. There are very few things that create sudden, extreme heat for a 500 kilometer square region of a planet. Yeah, that will be explained in Tan Iricid.

The Burdoth map mentioned in text.
I really want to do the Jorunigraphica, but will have to keep focusing on tight little areas. this map covers about the same square mileage for the Burdoth map which includes Heridoth and sections of Dobre, Doben-al, Ros Crendor, East Trinnu, and the island and waterways outside Ardoth Bay. But the Jorunigraphica requires cooperation with Sholari James, who answers emails at an even lower rate than Andrew Leker, and it would take a LOT of time to do the real maps... so, I'm just going to focus on a small geographic area at a time.

I know secrets about Drail. I love revealing secrets - it's a good thing I'm not in the military or intelligence communities because I would have been in the news for years. Andrew was absorbed with his creation of Burdoth, and I consider Burdoth beneficiary of the highest tech levels on the planet, but not really a place I would want to do anything more than a brief visit. My heart remains in Ponteer, and I get to tell people why in the next several Return to Jorune books.

And I need to move onto the Eastern continent. Dobreh, Yobreh, Hobeh, Lundere. I have thoughts about them, too. Horrible, horrible thoughts. And the Northern continent - Voligire, Gilthaw and Sharden. Who got time for that?

This is what I do while waiting for the final edit files for the layout of Sholari Magazine Volume Two, Number One. I also am expanding my notes for Sholari Magazine, v2n2. That means warp work - The Red Gate, the Blue Gate, and the Black Gates (there are a lot of those, which is not good).

And I'm expanding the notes that will go into The Angel of Drail, which includes colonial information regarding the Seraphim GuardTrarch culture, with the surprisingly cosmopolitan nature of a school in the mountains of Drail (the headmistress may be of interest to you). There are two cool pieces of Earth-tec new player may fight over - a very unique armor based on research in our own so-called 'real world', and a device for people addicted to education. Of course, this is science fiction and we don't have to be worried about anyone being involved with that.

I still do not have a functioning scanner and have to use my phone (with a great app called ScanBot) to take pictures of new art for layout, but I am old fashioned and insist on real scans of the real art for it to go to press. Bad thoughts about Apple - the problem is their new upgrade, which does not address my all-in-one-printer-scanner. It print, but it will not scan. Yet. I have a really old Canon Li50 scanner in the back room, where I also have a really old Mac laptop running 10.6, which MIGHT allow me to scan. We shall see if that works. (I suspect the really old scanner will not work with the new OSX upgrade which is the source of my current menu of woes du jour, because it doesn't work with the much news all-in-one that worked fine 36 hours before the software upgrade.)

But I think I'd trade all of this for a really good night's sleep.


Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Retake. Oooo, final cover.

oooo. We have a final cover, final cover copy, final cover art, final layout. Now, moving on to the interior layout... and then up to DrivethruRPG.com for sale... and back to Gomo Guide: Tan Iricid. (I love this cover, tbw.)

The real cover is much larger, of course, and wrapped around an interior.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

I must have been a horrible person...

...in a previous life, because it just keeps happening like this.

I finally got some of the interior art done for Sholari v2n1. I have have holding off because I know there are much better artist, and I consider myself a 'concept man'. I write. I wanted to be a comic book artist when I was 14, but only occasionally do any art at all.

But I forced myself to do some art, liberally cribbed off a Miles Teves.

And then I went to scan them.

Apple just upgraded its operating system (now 10.12.6) and the scanner I used two weeks ago to do some scans no longer scans. And it is not just the Preview program from Apple, the import into Photoshop is also blocked. And the new upgrade for my Epson Artisan 725 is not available. The answer for any problem with Apple is "You should buy a new printer". That is the same ploy Microsoft used around 1994 where every upgraded required new hardware and/or paid software upgrades. But that is all just an amazing coincidence, I'm sure.

So I did some quick and dirty scans with an iPhone app called Scanbot, which does a really good job on small print documents. I feel like a 1960s spy every time I use it. So I got some scans that could be used in a pinch (after a good deal of photoshopping). Oh well.

I have to grimey up some computer art to make it look like wasn't drawn on a comptuer (a floor plan for a wrecked Lamorri spaceship, and the ebbijarkis (those with some Shanthic language chosps might be able to figure what that is - or who have been paying attention.

Two muadra NPCs, the original Somar, and a forest thriddle... progress. But I want to get them properly scanned.

And where do you run where the prairie is on fire?

Friday, July 28, 2017

Adjusting to Reality (Never my strong suit)

Map for the two Temauntro adventures is Sholari v2n1
Well, it is clear that the books I hoped to have up for sale in July will not get up until August. At least.

THE SONG OF ORPHANS, my science fantasy novel from 1977, was going to go up on DriveThruRPG.com but I have run into repeated problems with the cover, using the templates from Ingrham, their POD company. And somehow a hardcover version is on the sales system and I never set up a hardcover. So - THAT has to be put together.

SHOLARI MAGAZINE, Volume 2, Number 1, all the material is in except 4 pieces of art - and the cover shoudl be done this week, but it will still be August before it rolls. 

The collected versions of BORKELBY'S FOLLY, DANSTEAD TRAVELLER, and JORUNE ACCORDING TO SHOLARI JAMES are at a standstill from a complete lack of communications from the original editors (on the last two) and two contributors fro the first. Frozen until we get clarification - or pull certain articles from the re-released collection. Which is weird because over the past year Andrew has been pretty good about responding and chatting. Which is nice.

GOMO GUIDE: TAN IRICID was not planned for July, but I am hoping for September. The material has piled up over the years and it has jelled quickly. A good deal of secret history involved. 

THE ANGEL OF DRAIL is also coalescing nicely for a fall release. As is GOMO GUIDE: PONTEER
I hope to have six items out by the end of the year, down from the original plan of ten, but after the long drought, six would be good. I have a serious campaign gearing up for 2018, and the of SHOLARI, v2n2
People who stop communicating has been a problem throughout the history of Jorune. Don't know what it is, but it is a pattern. My biggest problem is art. Art art art. 

No - let me correct that. My biggest problem is my expectations. I confuse people saying that they want to do something, or that they are going to do something, with someone actually DOING that thing. That is not just a problem with Jorune - it has been a cultural problem that has gotten worse over the past few decades. 


And i don't have the power to change that. 

(I made the mistake of trying to copy a post from Facebook to the blog and it suddenly had 4 to 6 carriage retruns for every one in the post. Ah, the wonders of Facebook code. So I retyped this and hope it does NOT repeat this time.)

99% there

A few edits still to come, but art by Steve DeVaney. But it's 99% completed
Cover from artist Steve Devaney. The 4500 year old monument to The Desti, hero of the Shanthic expulsion of the Lamorri from Jorune and inventor of the tlosk. If you are new to Skyrealms of Jorune, that should be enough to short circuit your English oriented brain.

I really like it. This is the front and back cover with no typography. We are talking about selling it as a poster.

If you think it's worth sharing, can I ask you to share it with other Jorunis, whereever they may be.

I really do feel more comfortable posting things to the blog and only annoying people who have already made the conscious decisions to be updated.

Steve and I are talking about him doing the next two covers for Sholari. I am not opposed.

If you look very, very closely, you will see a pair of pilgrms on the rope bridge connecting the monument to the rim of the crater which was also the cause of the need for the manument. Long story, that.

And I'm starting to tell it.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

That'll do.

Jamie Cromwell passed. He was, among other things, the farmer who said "That'll do, pig." in Babe. Loved him. Loved the movie.

Art by Joe Department. I do not like my work - I would prefer that it be done by a real artist. But I can accept this. Mummified head of a Lamorri for the rework of The Somar, appearing in Sholari Magazine, volume 2, number 1. Did two other pieces I do not like at all, so I'm working on those, and the rest of what is required, today.

But, just holding up the art pad, it's a little dim, but the Lamorri is there. Think - "Ramian with 200% the brain case, and about 50% larger than a Ramian head..." and then go poot. As tall as a Corastin, smarter than a Ramian... might eat a Thriddle. Poot.

It will look better in the publication. Black and white.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Moving Closer

It's getting closer. Art. Art is the hangup.

One of the things I want to see with Sholari, Volume 2, will be strange and foreign. Stability. I would like to see the same logo on at least three issues - the three we have planned and which are getting real.

So I got the next-to-final of the art for the wrap around cover by Steve Devaney (beautiful wrap-around artwork based on an ancient shanthic monument - at dawn) and I was trying to settle on a real logotype. I had one that I really liked based on the old Jungle comics logo, but that was really out of line with Steve's art. So I am looking at a variant of that for the new GOMO GUIDE series. Each of the three issues published in the 1990s were kind of a surprise. Two were "Church Bulletin" format - 8 1/2 x 14, folded in half. One was docu-tech, a new technology that predated Print-on-Demand, and published as US Letter standard - 11 x 17, folded.

Sholari Magazine Volume 2 will be Print on Demand US Letter format, and I would like them to look like they belong together.

I want a logotype with some visual feel of real handwork, like the original Miles Teves handbrush technique (which I converted to a .ttf font for experiments), but ... no the same. So after a number of attempt, I came up with...
The font is one of the new style of retro with swash. Readable, aged, looks like someone spent some time on it with the intent of it being around for a while.

This does not come from nowhere. I have been doing some tracking of Jorune for tech levels and culture, which included the revelation of Thriddle of Earth 19th Century mass publication with powered presses (water power, but Jorune may be reaching the point where steam is a consideration). Thriddle have produced books on a more 17th Century level of carved block pages used for mass production, and distribution to limited 'subscribers'. A new cermamic-plate process where a slip is poured into the mold created from a very doable handset type (do some web search for "California Case" and "Proofing Press"), but revelations from one of the unearthed Cryo-Bins would have included whole libraries of information, including ways to read them. This was follow by long, Thriddle analysis of transfer into their own libraries (with the control of what is or is not included), indexed, and then shared on a restricted method (such as the libraries of the "initiated" in the more secret circles of Tan Iricid, like the Black Hall, and the pledged servants of the Somar). A cheap process of printing and some new types of cheap paper resulted in an explosion of cheap reading material, which boosted pride in getting new information through reading as a reliable technology, and the financial opporunities of cheap publications. A 'pulp' explosion of popular, trashy literature that went to feed the imagination of the newly educated, the backlash of the long educated classes, and the hidden information that is real hidden among the dross.

For me the whole idea began with British "boys papers" of the 1960s, my own interest in pulp era publications, and the offhand comment of Chris Williams, publisher of VERTEXT magazine, during a Jorune game. He quipped about the adventures of "Slam Desti, Boy Yord" and my brain was off and running. That was in the 1990s and resulted in the concept of cheap entertainment: Slam Desti, Pibber Man, Copra Denn, and Allidoth Confidential. Pulpish, noir, comic book, big little books...

So that tone has shaped my idea for published Jorune. I have continued my own autodidactic studies on publishing and technology histories, particularly on how they effected 20th Century popular publications. Which is where I lived.

Jorune to me has harmonics with various stages of Earth world history. They are experience an expansion based on old technologies effecting modern political thought that would be like the period just before the "discovery of the New World" (I have so many problems with that phrase, but let's let that go at the moment). Before the opening of incredible new reserves of resources, labor, and space, which created what we call the Modern Age.

So my design for Jorune tends to echo previous eras, but also reflect a much large context of the Marshal McLuhan idea that "The Medium Is The Message". The information, and the way it is delivered, reflects the cultures, education levels, fears, and political aspirations of the age.

So I would like the new Sholari, the Gomo Guides, and the Sholari Adventure Kits to reflect that. They will NOT all look the same. But I would like some stability in the presentation.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

NPC and Characters for ORFA


Imperfect though it may be, ORFA is the evoluion of a d20 based gaming system that actually works for Jorune. It is not intended to be the ultimate Jorune gaming experience - it is intended to allow a Sholari to get people new to Jorune into the skin of the player races and out onto the surface to deal with the races, the cultures, the history, the threats, the animals, and the intrigues of one of my Top Three adventures worlds. The first is Barsoom (Edgar Rice Burroughs' Mars), Tchai (Jack Vance's Planet of Adventure), then Jorune (or Sho Caudal, as it is called by the natives and most of the immigrant races).


Most important, ORFA is not a "Product". There is no ORFA Core Book to buy. It will be a free ORFA Jorune download and each published scenario or article with characters will have those characters fully generated and available. This means in Sholari Magazine, any of the Sholari Adventure Kits, or other possible publications. We hope to follow with other settings adapted to ORFA (hopefully an ORFA Pulp and an ORFA SciFi or two).

ORFA was started as Jorune 3.5 for my personal games (and those people put up with a LOT). The idea was to reduce the drama around clunky exchanged, create fun character genreation, and speed up combat. For a while it was called Oracle System for a while, and that survives in the Sholari's all purpose fortune telling Die Roll–the Oracle Die. Someone, I wish I cold remember who, made a comment about On Roll Fits All as the name this system. But they were right. 

We found a single roll could not only answer the Yes/No of simple success, but the Quality of Success could be measured with the point difference between target and role, or between combatants in real inter-character combat. The basic system was for four zones with a fifth for the special effect of the setting - which in Jorune is "Isho". Some races have modifiers that effect every roll on a stat.

It is the beneficiary of attempts to use other systems. For example, the D6 System of "plusses" to basic rolls helped shape the ORFA +1-+4. The Fuzion Skill+Stat formula found its way in, and we began to see places where more than one skill within a Stat tree could be applied to the roll. Another set of experiences with web RPG systems gave us the idea of "Factors" for weapons - Weapons doing increased damages for groups of points in the Quality of Success

But the best success was with Combat. Our Combat scenes were getting close to real time. Players knew the modifiers for their characters from previous attempts, the basics of Stat+Skill(s)+Modifers for the Target Numbers became easier to identified. The weapon factor was applied faster and faster.

We got to a rhythm of "Scene Description" "Initiative" "Statement of Intent", "Roll" with all modifiers, Success/Failure Quality of Success, applied Factors to damage, Next Action – IF the combat continued.

We found the combination of stupid choices with bad rolls could kill someone in one roll, which tallied with what we saw in the world where an inexperienced loony with a weapon and kill someone who would be thought of as a master with the right intent, the Stat+Skill(s)+Mods for the target number, Luck a good Roll, a good Degree of Succes, and the right Factor for a weapon (in the right Hit Location). Combat was deadly, not a macho shouting match. The player's liked that.

I used the earliest drafts of ORFA in my last games in California, Colorado, then back in California again. A couple of Sholaris ran ORFA Jorune in some conventions and sent me valuable feedback.

When Jorune raised its head again, it was time to also look at ORFA and present it in a simple presentation. We eliminated the difference between NPCs or full Characters. Any character could be picked up and played. We wanted options for features some people liked, and others could do without. Options like methods Initiative, multiple paths for Character Improvement, etc. 

In Sholari, Volume 2, Number 1 there are two articles involving characters. In ORFA there is no difference between a Player Character and an NPC. This means any NPC could be picked up and played running this character. 
I have a piece of Miles' art that is too big for my scanner. So I scanned it in halves (approximately) and stitched them together.

He was changing his style to deal with the demands of Hollywood for clean design sketches that would be turned into paintings or sets or prosthetics or maquettes. The result was very clean and gym-muscled characters that are more like Richard Corbin underground comics than what I think of as Miles Teves art.

But it is interesting to see. I know there is a narrative in the scene and will need to search to find it.

It's still a nifty piece of art.
Previously unpublished Miles Teves Jorune
Lack of comment is the best way to shut me up. I'm posting less frequently here. The silence was what made me stop doing Jorune for years. Maybe I'm expecting too much.

I am committed to getting three more pieces out, then will see if there is enough of an audience to do the others.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Dancing with Art

Teves Beagre sketch. Nasty rats.
Dealing with raw art is a dance.

Several years ago I received a surprise package of original art from Miles Teves. Some of it was familiar pictures from the previously published game support. Some of it was just sketches in various stages of completion. I hope to take some of the sketch work and bring it into the new publications. I have already taken some previously seen art and mix it with unpublished sketches to make new pieces of art.

Tarrro Holder
But as an artist I appreciate seeing sketchwork. It shows me the artist mind in action in determining what to present, how to present it. Things may be tried that don't work out. One of Miles pictures show a huge Tarro on the outstretched arm of a man, possibly a Muadra, which would be like a normal sized human. holding a hundred pound chimpanzee on his wrist at a right angle from his body. 

If you look at the blueline for the collage, you might notice him - flipped, smaller Tarro on the opposite arm. Tambo hissing at a companion's pet (Reco A). Thse figurtes all come from Miles sketches, except for the squatting Bronth, which is from a frequently published image with a bronth and human, backed by a thombo.

Blueline for Collage
There art is very light so it does not reproduce well. But I took that part, shrank the tarro to a more manageable size, and incorporated it into a collage using a bunch of other characters. I think it works well for a Jorunish 'team', which will always bee a good call for the future adventure and resource books. 

There are already a bunch of sketches that will be easy to place, others that may only serve to show someone else how Miles thought this particular creature should be presented. Which is always helpful.

On "blueline" - it is a technique where the pencil drawing is in blue, and then it is inked with black ink. When photographed or scanned for reproduction, the blue drops away so you only see the black lines. I'll be using that that technique for a lot of illustrations that draw from older images from Miles or other sources. It should invite people to see a story - I classify myself as a competent artist, not an inspired one.

Scrade, of which, more later.
There are other pencil sketches that are just regular gaming figures with no reference to Jorune at all. I may be presenting some of those, too. 

But I'm looking to expand the perception of Jorune beyond the Renaissance mind in writing and art. There are snooty places, like Thantis and the international district of Thoneport in Thantier. There are bizarre landscaps the speak to major tragedies in the not too distant past of Jorune, and there are locations that could just be explored by anyone with a desire to break free some treasure for their character. Robert Smith did a good job of bringing a different eye to Jorune, Marc Debidour, a new French artist joining the ranks of Jorune artist has a style much more associated with children's book illustration. I think it is a legitimate style to tell the story. Others may not.

Since I treat Jorune as Dreamtime, it is a place I like to go and look around. Sometimes I have to use the artists eyes to see the place that has previously only existed in my brain. People may not agree with my choices of art, but my primary interest is in seeing the planet through new eyes. I may not agree, but even so, my eyes get opened wider through the eyes of the artists. The debt Jorune owes to Miles is enormous, but it is not the only way to see things Jorune.  

Hope hope people will hold on through the heretical eyes of strangers. 
A miles ketch Tologra - my favorite of the new scans. Found the original and put it to work.

The Lost Is Found

The stitched scans, still all dirty doo doo crap.
When I was originally working up notes for a story set in Auklin (planned for release in Sholari v2n3) I did a "sketch" - a blueline pencil sketch that I had started to in with a girl in the thombo cart bring her produce to town down from the mountains above the lake with a Corastin friend. It was fun to do, but then it was lost. That was in California, 1994 or so. Then I moved to Colorado. Then back to California. Several addresses in California and then back to Colorado. Called it quits in Colorado and moved to North Carolina. I've been at the same address since the summer of 2005. Around the winter of 2010 my shed behind the house rotted through and water (and lots of it) got into to my books, magazines, original art, and more.

It thought it was all lost.

After some Photoshop time. I can accept this.
But while going through art this weekend I found it. Very surprised because it was in with original Miles art, and my original Miles art gets respected and protected.

But it was messed up. Age. Torn. Stained. Dirty.

And it was too large to scan in one go, so I scanned it more than once and tweaked it to the point where I might be able to use it.

I have some Photoshop skills.

And I guess Cedars of Lebanon survived on Jorune. Or something amazingly similar.


Sunday, July 9, 2017

Moonslight and The Words

I talked an artist into working with me and he seems less than thrilled about working with me again. But he gave me a bunch of drawing that I did not use in the reboot of GOMO GUIDE: THONEPORT. And a couple that were - underutilized. Like this picture, which I used in the collage that became the cover, but it continues to appeal to me in its raw form.

The moonlights scene - Night of many moons on Sho Caudal.
This to me is like a well composed scene from a 1930s black and white film, rich in the grayscales, the composition, and the lamps of a great studio trying to similat the light of more than one moon. I can see the blue wash of Shal above and behind to the left, the brilliance of full Tra forward and overhead, and probably the dul amber wash of Gobey setting to the far distance left ahead. The blue skin of Salu would almost glow in blue light, and the washes of white and amber/brown would just give it all a sense of artistic fiction.

I think I may grow this and tweak the grayscale version, but really I want to paint it, which would mean Photoshop paint. Not brushes on canvas, or in my case, masonite.

World of Comic Art
Art is loathe to die in me. Today I was searching for specfic origihnal pieces by Miles, and in that search I found some of my old drawings. I think writing was the right way to go. But when I was younger, I wanted to be a cartoonist. A woman most of you will never have heard of. Dorothy McGreal. I knew her because of her sons, who were into comic books. We looked at doing a comic book together - I was an old man of 13 at the time, and it was a question of who should write, who should pencil, and who should judge that. Well, Mrs. McGreal was also a publisher - The World of Comic Art, the first slick paper serious magazine devoted to comics - newspaper strips priarily. (I had a copy, but it was lost in the great shed failure through storms - long story, but aren't they all). We each did a couple of pages as artist, inker, and writer. her sons became penciler and inker, and I was told I should write.
I thought I still had a page from my 1963 "audition" with Mrs. McGreals sons, but it is lost. 

I worked on an idea for LA Comics back around 1971 in the L.A. Underground comics scene. They had three primary titles - LA Comics, Mickey Rat, and Mutants of Metropolis. Again, my writing was invited in and my art - feh. I wanted to be a cartoonist/comic book artist and did that kind of work for a while. Never made a splash and it was only my writing that anyone used. But I think my appreciation of Robert's art come my frustration of my own artist identity. 

But Mrs. McGreal was serious in her mentoring. A couple of afternoons when her sons were off doing things elsewhere, she called me over and we sat at the little table in her front room and she talked to be about writing. it wasn't profound, but it was the first time I had heard the ideas. And it stuck. Ideas like "have something of your own to say", and "make sure there is a reason we are seeing this day in your character's life, tell us why it is important that we know". The first time they are profound.

Because of Mrs. McGreal, I started focusing on writing and my English teachers noticed. They were encouraging. And I had been cartooning for the first school paper (Leuzinger in Lawndale, CA) but they started asking me to write. I did humor, I did reporting and started getting interested in journalism. I was part of the "underground press" scene from about 1966, when I was a thorn in the side of Inglewood High, to 1972, when I started with underground radio and Pacifica. From the newsroom at Pacifica I became on air satire performer and writer, and from there to radio drama as writer and director and long form prose, and from that to stage as playwright and director. And late in life (or late-er) it was words that brought me to role playing and writing for Jorune.

And that tone of Journalism has carried over to Jorune. I try to be a Reporter with a tiny warp where I can see that world and have to try to report it to the rest of this planet. And my subconscious works on it, so that I get fully digested chunks in my sleep, which come to through to me as dictation from another world, just be fore I wake. I do a dream journal with Evernote and recording on my iPhone, and most of what is coming out in Return to Jorune is a result of that process.

I guess Mrs. McGreal is to blame or be credited with all that. I have a real soft spot in my heart for her.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

I've been finishing several projects to get up for sale, two fo which are Jorune. One just regular science fiction.

But I've bene distracted because of money crap.

I've been wondering if anyone would have an interest in a private doc with my notes. A lot of my stuff will be including over the next year, but I have a lot of notes that haven't been whipped into final shape yet. But... I was thinking of about 150 pages of notes, maps, and such...

Just a thought. Like $10 for a private PDF. Other solutions would be a better idea, but that's what I came up with so far.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Timeline

Ingredients for
Scars of Far Temauntro
In the background I do other things. I'm redoing the write-up of radio theater as a do-it-yourself project as part of a writer's retreat in a ghost town in Colorado. And I just finished an additional article for Sholari, Volume 2, Number 1 - "The Measure of Jorune" which includes weight, time, distance, and comparative calendars, which was drawn from one of my secret projects in the background - a Grand Unified Timeline for Jorune drawn from internet essays, White Wolfe essays, notes from Andrew, Sholari James and my own secret notes.

In the process I've been working on the detail from the Human Shanthic War, which was amazingly brief. This is the story of Iscin and Bomoveris, who knew each other before the war as leaders on opposite sides of factions answering the question "Now that Earth is gone, how do we live on Jorune?" The detailing goes from the last word from Jorune, the missed supply missions, and the expansion of humans into lands the Shantha did not agree humans could enter. And why there are places humans which were not to enter.

It's been interesting and I wish I had permission to do a real novel with real licensing, but it is satisfying. The background for the development of Iscin races and the reality of living alone as "the last man on Jorune" (so far as he knew) and then surrounded by Blount, Crugar, Bronth, Woffen and Tologra children. And a human shows up - someone he didn't like in the pre-war life.   "Forgive and forget, we're together now... "

But, it didn't turn out that way.

Iscin's labe from ALIEN LOGIC game.
I'm going to be writing a rough scene next, and the format is detailed timeline, so...
I'm thinking it will go into Sholari v2 n2. Maybe. Probably.

So, I just saw the semi-final render on the 3d scene that will be the foundatioin fo the cover painting for the cover... and I want to share that, but it will take away the fun of seeing it for the first time.

Friday, June 30, 2017

The Meter of Jorune

A Thriddle from Scars of Temauntro
The question of Feet V. Meters came up about Jorune. English measure vs. Metric measure.

Since Meter is related to the size of the planet (or has that been proven wrong?) and when it comes to Jorune, who's damn feet are we talking about.

3-foot yard comes to make sense ... I have a 6 foot wingspan. Arms akimbo, my fingertips are 6 feet apart, nose to fingertip 3 feet, or close enough for jazz. I've used it to measure rooms in vacant houses, measure string, etc. But Some people aberly have 5 feet. I have friends with a 7 foot wing span. It is very individual.

So I'm thinking of running some number for mesurement on Earth, vs. measurement on Jorune.

You could feel comfortable but it would be impreciss.

And Thriddle love precision.


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Pathfinder

What the Somar Found
When I was young I thought I would be a comic book artist. Over time I found that I could not draw the same face over and over, and it was not where my passion took me.

So over the years I play with drawing but have worked along "artists" and am in awe of them. On of the most satisfying art related chapters was Voyage of the Aylon Star many years ago, where I drew all of the NPCs and scenes, turned them over to George Barr and got to see what a real artist did with my preliminary art. A real artist taking my ideas.

And I am back and a point that I have visited before where I am doing art to cover the lack of artists for Jorune. So I take the descriptions. There was an "ebba cycle" from The Somar, (Sholari Magazine, Volume 1, Number 2). There was no picture of that device in that issue, but there will be when The Somar is reprinted in Sholari Magzine, Volume 2, Number 1.

I was able to do a blue pencil sketch, ink it with black, like a comic book page, and got my preliminary graphic. I think I will have to draw it again so I don't throw up from this first version winding up in the magazine.

I'm also redrawing the map of Gralis, and will do a map to the landslide site, and a floor plan to what they find.

But I really wish I had some real artists to take my art specs, or my preliminary sketches, and turn them into the 'art' Jorune deserves.

Frustration.

Yeah. I think I'd draw this again. I'm a writer, not a comic book artist. I'm also a reporter, a stained glass artist, a singer and (was) a guitar player. I've sold oil paintings and been an on-air DJ and comedy weirdo. But not a comic book artist.

I am still in awe of real artists.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

I am pounding away on several projects. that's how I do it. Juggle Juggle Juggle, four things get finished almost at once.

ORFA: JORUNE, minimalist game play system. That is to say in action it flies. It takes a few minutes to build your character and grok your modifiers caused by race or environment or occupation. But when you get your Target number, roll 1d20. If you succeed, your Quality of Success is the difference between Roll and Target and determines modifications on the effect of that attempt - Damage, Quantity, whatever - related to your actual situation. It flies. Combat is damn near real time. You can keep pounding on them until they die, but so can they (whoever they is).

The goal is to finish ORFA: JORUNE at the same time as SHOLARI v2n1. The characters from SCAR OF FAR TEMAUNTRO will be presented as ORFA NPCs to be used, or not, in running a game in the setting or to pull into other games you may run.

Each Jorune SAK (Sholari Adventure Kit) will have ORFA: JORUNE characters for the NPCs so you can build up a nice repertorie company for later play or use in other games. (GOMO GUIDES, not so much.)

ORFA will be a freebie. Automatic download with a PDF of the product. ORFA JORUNE is the first appearance. But I also plan on a pulp/tubepunk game in ORFA terms, and a science fiction setting.

ORFA is simple. First you Generate Your chracter. That is where the book, chart and thought work are. It takes a minute, as the kids say (what kids and why are they always talking?)

Then, when you want to take an action that will require dice (not everything requires dice*), it is:

Target Number = Stat + Named Skills + Assuemed Skills + Modifiers = Target Number
State the EXACT Thing You Are Rolling to Accomplish
Roll your 1d20 die.
If you succeed (role under your Target Number) calculate Quality of Success, which gives you the effect of that role - such as damage, or how many rubies you find in a sack of rice.

Next Action - GO. C'mon. I came here to kill things, not read charts.

Combat almost runs at real time. and that's when you want speed. 

I've been running it with my own games going back more than twenty years under various names. "Oracle" "j20" (Guess what the "j" stood for). ONE ROLL FITS ALL just seemed appropriate and hasn't changed for almost 20 years. Five Stats, and the 5th Stat is setting specific. For Jorune it is "Isho". For the pulp game it will be "Weird". 

But it is chugging along nicely.

* You don't always have to roll. If you are putting vinegar on your fish, you shouldn't have to roll to see if you succeed. If you are trying to grab a can of soda of a table, you shouldn't have to roll. If you are trying to jump from one building to another, four stories up while people are chasing you - THEN you should have to roll.