Champions of Aetaltis Anthology, Including my story The Bridge

I have a story in this upcoming anthology.  Mystical warrior monk needs to cross a bridge. The most stubborn mercenary ever won’t let him. The story came out really cool if I do say so myself.

It has a ton of great writers in there, including Ed Greenwood, Jean Rabe, Dave Farland, Steven Long, and more. Trust me, you don’t need to be familiar with the game world at all to enjoy this. It is just a bunch of solid, fun, fantasy adventure stories.

Let me share some fun writerly backstory with you about this project came about for me.

Marc Tassin runs the writing tract at GenCon, and does a fantastic job. Managing writers and gamers is like herding cats, but I think GenCon has put together one of the best writing programs of any con in the country. I corresponded with him a bit about programming there, and met him a few times at the con. So that’s how I got to know him. Aetaltis is his game world setting.

I’m at the point of my career where I get asked to be in a lot of anthologies. One of the hardest things for me as a writer is turning down work. I think its because I grew up on a farm, and there is this psychological thing where when people want to give you money for your stuff, you take the job. Only I can’t do that anymore just because I’m too busy, and there are way too many offers, so I have to turn down a lot of short fiction invites. If I’m in an anthology now, it is because the idea behind it is too cool to say no.

When Marc asked me if I’d be willing to do a short story for this setting, because I like the guy, I said send me over the setting book and I’ll take a look. I did. It was pretty awesome.  Basic concept, well fleshed out fantasy world, various races and cultures, with all of the ancient history and myth, but then these world gates open, and a new dimension hopping group arrives. Which is awesome. Until the gates explode and everybody is stranded.

And lots of other cool stuff. Okay, I’m in.

In projects where there is an existing universe, and authors are asked to contribute, the creators either have a story idea in mind that is a good fit for what that writer’s style is, or they just show you everything and ask you to pick whatever sounds the coolest to you. This was one of those look at the list of topics and pick kind of deals.

When I saw the master list there were two things that jumped out at me. An order of mystical warriors, who were world hopping and collecting mystical martial arts from various dimensions, until they got stranded, and now they are fragmented into competing schools–which basically lets me play with every 70s Kung Fu movie plot ever–only at their basic fundamental level they are similar to Romans!

AND

There is a race of surly, tundra dwelling, giant cat men, who worship the god of suffering. So the more life sucks, the more blessed they they think they are. And I’ve got a gift for writing morose, stubborn protagonists.

Boom. Done.  When you come up with your whole story in like ten minutes, and you’ve got enough stuff about the characters that didn’t make it in to fill another novel by the time your’e done writing the short, you know you’re onto something.

Geeky Hobbies: Little Space Dudes 7 (Mercenaries from Infinity)
All of my European Tour Stops and Dates

28 thoughts on “Champions of Aetaltis Anthology, Including my story The Bridge”

  1. ” and you’ve got enough stuff about the characters that didn’t make it in to fill another novel ” Is this a hint that an Aetaltis novel may also be in the works?

    1. Nope. Complete lack of time.

      If I was going to write a full novel from any one of my short stories right now it would have to be Father’s Day from the Shared Nightmares anthology. Post apocalyptic alien invasion dream warriors. 🙂

      1. May be we need a series of LarryBots to write all the stories Larry Prime doesn’t have time to write. LOL

          1. Or ask some of those dimension-hopping warriors to bring back a few Larrys from other universes to take up the slack.

  2. Short stories take a lot more time than they seem like they should. Or maybe that’s just me. I decided to write some short stories for family members, and so far at least twice I’ve come up with an idea, started fleshing it out, then went, “Nope, that’s a novel,” and had to set it aside and come up with something else.

    1. I have it on good authority that the skill sets for short stories and novels don’t overlap completely, and that one of the biggest challenges to writing a short story is knowing what to leave out.

    1. Yes! It will definitely be available in e-format (PDF/MOBI/EPUB), although I’m not sure when that will appear for pre-order. (I’m Marc Tassin, the guy behind Aetaltis – and I’ll add that it was pretty fantastic to have Larry write a story for this. And not surprisingly, it’s a REALLY good story.)

        1. The ebook version will be available on the 12th along with the print copies. I just don’t think Amazon will post them for pre-order.

  3. So… GenCon and writing, leads me to the inevitable question: What game is this a setting for?

    Because I’m really intrigued by your summary of it.

      1. Marc,

        I just read (actually, I’m still reading) Heroes of Thornwall, and WOW. You just took me from “I’ve never heard of this setting before Larry mentioned it” to “I have GOT to run this sometime.” I have NEVER seen a town described in such loving detail in any RPG sourcebook. I mean, an index of named NPCs and where they can be found? I take my hat off to you, sir. As a fledgling GM myself, I need exactly this kind of help in fleshing out my stories — and now I want to get a gaming group together to run an adventure in your world, RIGHT NOW.

        Well done.

        1. Thank you! I think I’ll copy this, print it, and keep it handy for the days I need a boost to keep writing! 🙂

  4. Is the book (or perhaps just the short story) available in electronic format somewhere ? I no longer have the energy or the storage space to enjoy paper books 🙁

    1. Yes! The ebook versions should be available on the 12th when the book is available. I just don’t believe Amazon will have it for pre-order.

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