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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 28 Sep 2004 :  00:14:59  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by Miraculixx

Are there any future plans from you, to continue the adventures of Liriel Baenre?


At this time, there are no plans to continue Liriel's story. But she is very persistant, so I won't rule out the possibility entirely!

quote:
--plz forgive my bad english(it isnt my mother language), so i hope you did understand all i have written--


No worries. Your English is far better than my German.

Thanks for the email, and welcome to Candlekeep!


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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 28 Sep 2004 :  13:15:00  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by Kajehase
Any chance of getting to see that missing stanza of the Danilo's sword you mentioned?


No problem. The lyrics were posted on my website for a while, and one year at GenCon I even handed out sheet music to anyone who was interested (and, most likely, several people who couldn't care less but were too polite to point this out...)

For the record, I got Ed Greenwood's okay for the title.

ELMINSTER'S JEST
Attributed to (read: "blamed upon") Danilo Thann

There was a knight who longed to wield a more impressive lance
To carry into battle, and to aid him with romance.
A wizard overheard the knight and granted his request.
The knight at first was overjoyed to see how he was blessed.

Chorus:

Hey there, ho there,
A lesson's coming through:
Be careful what you ask for--
For your wishes may come true.

The knight went to a revel with his weapon thus enhanced.
The lance made dining difficult and tripped him while he danced.
The next day at the tournaments he won the jousting meets,
For all who faced his fearsome lance fell laughing from their seats.

Chorus

The knight romanced a lady who admired his staff of oak.
They'd scarse begun their gentle joust before the staff had broke.
The knight sought out the wizard, who replied when brought to task,
"Your wish bespoke how long it WAS, and not how long 'twould LAST!"

Chorus

Repeat chorus if possible, run if necessary.
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Kajehase
Great Reader

Sweden
2104 Posts

Posted - 28 Sep 2004 :  13:24:00  Show Profile Send Kajehase a Private Message
And once more, thank you Elaine.

This one will go straight into my notebook with songs to use when I play a bard in online games. Something tells me it'll be a huge hit on those servers where the average age of the players is higher than fifteen years.

There is a rumour going around that I have found god. I think is unlikely because I have enough difficulty finding my keys, and there is empirical evidence that they exist.
Terry Pratchett
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 28 Sep 2004 :  13:39:00  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
Every week, I get a few emails asking about some aspect of the writing process. It's my opinion that writing is much akin to sausage-making, in that readers are more likely to enjoy the finished product if we don't know too much about the process. On the other hand, for writers, (working writers as well as aspiring scribes) observing other storytellers at work can be informative--or cautionary.

So, for those who might be interested, here's the address for my online writing journal: http://elfnotes.blogspot.com

I also have a personal reason for the online journal. I'm trying to improve my writing and increase productivity, and I'm coming at this task from several different angles. A journal is a record of progress, and it enforces a certain accountability. Anyone who's tried putting stories on paper knows that a day which feels busy and passes quickly doesn't necessarily yield much in the way of progress. Knowing I have to record my daily writing accomplishments helps me keep focused and on task. It reminds me, on a daily basis, to think about and articulate specific steps that will help me improve my work and accomplish my goals. It's also a good way to evaluate those goals from time to time, and make sure the small decisions support the larger ones.
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 28 Sep 2004 :  13:49:05  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by Kajehase

And once more, thank you Elaine.

This one will go straight into my notebook with songs to use when I play a bard in online games. Something tells me it'll be a huge hit on those servers where the average age of the players is higher than fifteen years.



After I finish up the two novels, one novella, and three short stories currently in the pipeline, I'll be starting a new novel about a bardic (non-FR) character. Her music will be very much a part of the plot, and part of the writing process will involve coming up with new ballads. To that end, I plan to update my MIDI system and have the music available online, so that potential readers can actually hear it. Once that's in place and the learning curve has leveled out somewhat, I'd like to transcribe and upload some of Danilo's songs.

And come to think of it, since I'm getting into the mindset and setting up the technology, this wouldn't be a bad time to focus on a story about FR bards!

So many intriquing projects, so few waking hours...
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 28 Sep 2004 :  13:56:32  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend
How about a Gilbert & Sullivan modernized operetta/musical with a love story across clashing powers in the streets and upways of Skullport? UNDERSIDE STORY! The Skulls of Skullport sing Greek chorus throughout the production, and we finally get the dancing troglodytes and tren kick line you've always wanted, Elaine!



Damn it, Steven, now the storyline for this nightmare is fomenting in the back of my mind. A drunken bard, a musical spell gone awry, and suddenly we've got "Little Shop of Horrors, Redux" playing in a Skullport alley near you. Steve Martin reprises his role, only he's got a ::ahem:: smaller part: he has been transmuted into a sadistic, tooth-pulling halfling.

You think the folks at DRAGON magazine might be interested in an off-the-wall story for the April edition?

Nah. Me either.
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1707 Posts

Posted - 29 Sep 2004 :  00:56:56  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage Send Steven Schend a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham

quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend
How about a Gilbert & Sullivan modernized operetta/musical with a love story across clashing powers in the streets and upways of Skullport? UNDERSIDE STORY! The Skulls of Skullport sing Greek chorus throughout the production, and we finally get the dancing troglodytes and tren kick line you've always wanted, Elaine!



Damn it, Steven, now the storyline for this nightmare is fomenting in the back of my mind. A drunken bard, a musical spell gone awry, and suddenly we've got "Little Shop of Horrors, Redux" playing in a Skullport alley near you. Steve Martin reprises his role, only he's got a ::ahem:: smaller part: he has been transmuted into a sadistic, tooth-pulling halfling.

You think the folks at DRAGON magazine might be interested in an off-the-wall story for the April edition?

Nah. Me either.



It never hurts to ask, Elaine....

And Jack Nicholson's getting old enough that he can come in as Halaster in a cameo role!

Steven
Who thinks Rocky Horror Picture Show would be more attuned to the Realms....Richard O'Brien as Manshoon!

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36779 Posts

Posted - 29 Sep 2004 :  05:31:33  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

It never hurts to ask, Elaine....



I agree... After all, I remember such April features as the Mother kit, and the "Bard on the Run" song parodies.... (My fave was "Gnomish Space Marines", sung to the tune of "Yellow Submarine" by the Beatles.)

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

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Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 08 Oct 2004 :  02:01:32  Show Profile Send Kuje a Private Message
Heya,

I just wanted to let you all know that Elaine's new series is out, according to Amazon. :)

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium
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Krafus
Learned Scribe

246 Posts

Posted - 08 Oct 2004 :  16:38:02  Show Profile  Visit Krafus's Homepage Send Krafus a Private Message
Hello, Mrs. Cunningham.

My interest in FR and elves having recently been lit anew by Richard Baker's excellent Forsaken House, I decided to go back and reread what I see as the best novel about elves, Evermeet. Once again I was impressed to see how you captured the magical, mystical side of elves, and I was struck at how Evermeet resembles Tolkien's Silmarillion.

My number-crunching side also got curious. I'm wondering, what was the level of Vhoori Durothil, Kethryllia Amarillis and Zaor Moonflower? Vhoori seems to have been a very talented high mage. You mention that Kethryllia is an archmage, but she's also obviously a very skilled warrior, so I'm guessing her level total must approach 30. And just what kind of sword was Dharasha, the sword Kethryllia created? (I mean, was it a longsword, a bastard sword or a greatsword? And what was its magic?)

I'll understand if you can't give me exact levels due to Evermeet being old, but I'd very much like to know what at what kind of levels you see those characters, and the exact nature of Dharasha.
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
6645 Posts

Posted - 09 Oct 2004 :  09:47:11  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message
I'm very curious as to why you would want Elaine to provide you with information (which I suspect she will say she doesn't have - and most likely doesn't care too much about) regarding the game levels of a group of novel characters ... does it allow you to understand the plot or the novel in a better fashion? Or does knowing this enhance Elaine's fiction and your reading enjoyment? Maybe you plan to use the characters in an actual D&D game? If it is the latter, then make them whatever level you want - I'm sure the Realms Police won't come knocking on your door if you make a "mistake".

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Purple Dragon Knight
Master of Realmslore

Canada
1796 Posts

Posted - 09 Oct 2004 :  10:56:31  Show Profile Send Purple Dragon Knight a Private Message
Krash, a lot of people like to get the author's view on the game stats because they somewhat feel like they want to remain true to the character's vision...

Others like me, are just moderate readers who prefer to play the Realms more than reading in general... On a scale of 1 to 10 grading my interest I'd have the following:

Playing a D&D campaign set in the Realms: 10
Reading a Realms novel: 8
Reading Lord of the Rings: 7
Reading any other fantasy material (like the Eye of the World by Robert Jordan): 5
Being stuck in traffic: 3
Still having to look for a job after nearly a year of looking and interviewing, and then looking again: 1
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Krafus
Learned Scribe

246 Posts

Posted - 09 Oct 2004 :  14:00:38  Show Profile  Visit Krafus's Homepage Send Krafus a Private Message
quote:
I'm very curious as to why you would want Elaine to provide you with information (which I suspect she will say she doesn't have - and most likely doesn't care too much about) regarding the game levels of a group of novel characters ... does it allow you to understand the plot or the novel in a better fashion? does it allow you to understand the plot or the novel in a better fashion? Or does knowing this enhance Elaine's fiction and your reading enjoyment? Maybe you plan to use the characters in an actual D&D game?


It increases my reading enjoyment. No, it doesn't allow me to understand the plot or novel in a better fashion, but I always like to know what a character is capable of doing, in D&D terms. Plus I'm always curious to see how authors perceive their own characters in terms of levels.

I suspect you're correct and Elaine will say she doesn't have that information - but I decided I wouldn't know for sure until I asked.
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SiriusBlack
Great Reader

USA
5517 Posts

Posted - 09 Oct 2004 :  20:45:24  Show Profile  Visit SiriusBlack's Homepage Send SiriusBlack a Private Message
For those who need any further motivation, and you shouldn't, pick up Realms of the Dragons to read a very well done story, "Gorlist's Dragon" by Elaine Cunningham.

I'll never look at drow hairstyle the same way after meeting Chindra.

Sirius Black, Sergeant in the Candlekeep squad of the Realms Police.
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 11 Oct 2004 :  21:58:25  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
Thanks for the interest in Evermeet, but I'm afraid I can't answer your questions about stats and weapons. Alas, all the notes and back story material I used in writing this novel were in the box of personal papers lost during the move from Maryland to New England.

As someone's already suggested, feel free to assign whatever levels seem appropriate to your particular campaign. :)
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Lord Rad
Great Reader

United Kingdom
2080 Posts

Posted - 11 Oct 2004 :  23:16:06  Show Profile  Visit Lord Rad's Homepage Send Lord Rad a Private Message
Hi Elaine,

Loved Evermeet (in fact, I have two copies, one hardcover permanently on my shelf and one well-thumbed paperback always at hand )... my quick question is, did you personally put together the Dramatis Personae, or was this done by the editing staff? I'm always a fan of pages such as this (as Richard Baker also did in Forsaken House), especially when it comes to elven characters names

Lord Rad

"What? No, I wasn't reading your module. I was just looking at the pictures"
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36779 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  00:38:42  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Lord Rad

Hi Elaine,

Loved Evermeet (in fact, I have two copies, one hardcover permanently on my shelf and one well-thumbed paperback always at hand )... my quick question is, did you personally put together the Dramatis Personae, or was this done by the editing staff? I'm always a fan of pages such as this (as Richard Baker also did in Forsaken House), especially when it comes to elven characters names



Some of the ones in the modern sections of the novel come from the 2E supplement Evermeet.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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Melfius
Senior Scribe

USA
516 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  02:27:30  Show Profile  Visit Melfius's Homepage Send Melfius a Private Message
Ms. Cunningham, I have a problem. I have been seriously working on the idea for a Halaster book (as discussed previously). Then I decided to look at submission guidelines for WotC. Ick! This thing has almost no chance of ever seeing print!

Am I missing something here? Or have I hit the nail on the head? Should I just give up and try writing something a little more generic and submit that?

I know you prefer not to give out too much assistance with 'newbie authors' in this way, but is there any advice you can give me here? This is kind of a bummer. I had a really great storyline going here, and now I wonder if I'm not just wasting my time.
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  13:05:14  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by Melfius

Ms. Cunningham, I have a problem. I have been seriously working on the idea for a Halaster book (as discussed previously). Then I decided to look at submission guidelines for WotC. Ick! This thing has almost no chance of ever seeing print!

Am I missing something here? Or have I hit the nail on the head? Should I just give up and try writing something a little more generic and submit that?

I know you prefer not to give out too much assistance with 'newbie authors' in this way, but is there any advice you can give me here? This is kind of a bummer. I had a really great storyline going here, and now I wonder if I'm not just wasting my time.



Yes, I think you're right about the WotC submissions guidelines. In a shared world, the editors need to keep a tight hand on the continuity reins. It's very likely that a story written by an aspiring writer will either contradict or duplicate something in the pipeline, so it's very UNlikely that such a story will be accepted, as is.

That said, I don't think you're wasting your time at all. Although the story itself has little chance of seeing print, you'll be accomplishing three very important things by writing it. First, you're likely to do your best work when you're writing a story that interests you, so you'll end up with a better writing sample to send the folks at WotC. Second, you'll be demonstrating your familiarity with the Realms, and your interest in the setting. Finally, you'll be practicing the craft of writing.

That's a very important thing, and it's something aspiring writers frequently lose sight of. An aspiring artist draws incessantly and studies such things as color theory and human anatomy, a swordsmith works on journeyman pieces before he expects to produce a fine weapon, a student chef learns to make a proper roux before he tackles a complicated Cajun sauce. For a writer, writing something that isn't likely to see publication is most definitely NOT a waste of time. It's a necessary part of the learning process.

Go for it! :)

One further word of advice: make sure to include primary characters of your own creation. If you focus on existing characters, the result is likely to come off looking like fanfic.



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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  13:14:57  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by Lord Rad

Hi Elaine,

Loved Evermeet (in fact, I have two copies, one hardcover permanently on my shelf and one well-thumbed paperback always at hand )... my quick question is, did you personally put together the Dramatis Personae, or was this done by the editing staff? I'm always a fan of pages such as this (as Richard Baker also did in Forsaken House), especially when it comes to elven characters names



Thanks for the kind words. Sure you don't need two or three more copies? ;)

I put the character list together, but someone in the copyediting process did some odd things to it. ::shrugs::

In general, I find it helpful to have a quick reference of this nature in a densely populated book.

Edited by - ElaineCunningham on 12 Oct 2004 13:16:47
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  13:20:19  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

For those who need any further motivation, and you shouldn't, pick up Realms of the Dragons to read a very well done story, "Gorlist's Dragon" by Elaine Cunningham.

I'll never look at drow hairstyle the same way after meeting Chindra.



When you think about it, it's a very practical attitude. All those thick, flowing white locks provide a very convenient handhold for your opponents. Chindra, a professional gladiator, was more interested in winning/surviving than in getting the shampoo endorsements.

There's a disturbing notion, by the way: what sort of products would outstanding drow athletes endorse?

And here's another disturbing notion: when you realize that drow aren't into rampant commercialism, and consider that your average Menzoberranzan drow can go about his day without being bombarded by advertisements, you realize that some aspects of their culture compare favorably to our own.

But be that as it may. Glad you enjoyed the story. It was fun to dive back into the mindset of devious, multi-layered drow agendas.

Edited by - ElaineCunningham on 12 Oct 2004 13:31:19
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Lord Rad
Great Reader

United Kingdom
2080 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  13:32:11  Show Profile  Visit Lord Rad's Homepage Send Lord Rad a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham

Thanks for the kind words. Sure you don't need two or three more copies? ;)

I put the character list together, but someone in the copyediting process did some odd things to it. ::shrugs::

In general, I find it helpful to have a quick reference of this nature in a densely populated book.



Oh I'd be more than happy to have a third copy - if you manage to convince WotC to rerelease Evermeet as a leatherbound, gilt-edged tome, much like the new 30th anniversary PHB, then i'll be first in the queue.

(Hey stop pushing, ArionElenim, get in line for the "Elven Bible" )

Lord Rad

"What? No, I wasn't reading your module. I was just looking at the pictures"
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Krafus
Learned Scribe

246 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  14:23:23  Show Profile  Visit Krafus's Homepage Send Krafus a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham

Thanks for the interest in Evermeet, but I'm afraid I can't answer your questions about stats and weapons. Alas, all the notes and back story material I used in writing this novel were in the box of personal papers lost during the move from Maryland to New England.

As someone's already suggested, feel free to assign whatever levels seem appropriate to your particular campaign. :)



All your notes were lost? Darn. It must have been painful to realize you'd lost all that material... I know I keep all my ideas and notes just in case they might be useful someday, and I hate the thought that I might lose any of them. One never knows when some half-forgotten note or idea might suddenly come in handy.
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SiriusBlack
Great Reader

USA
5517 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  16:46:20  Show Profile  Visit SiriusBlack's Homepage Send SiriusBlack a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham
Chindra, a professional gladiator, was more interested in winning/surviving than in getting the shampoo endorsements.

There's a disturbing notion, by the way: what sort of products would outstanding drow athletes endorse?



Thank you for taking my mind to a disturbing image of a smiling drow with a power bar in his/her hand. "Always best after a fresh kill."

Perhaps it's best they aren't into commercial endoresments like our society.

quote:
Glad you enjoyed the story. It was fun to dive back into the mindset of devious, multi-layered drow agendas.



And it was a delight to read. Thanks again.

SB
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Melfius
Senior Scribe

USA
516 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  17:58:09  Show Profile  Visit Melfius's Homepage Send Melfius a Private Message
Thank you again, Ms. Cunningham.! You make very good points. I will do just that. I also came upon the idea of submitting stories to Dragon based on characters I myself played in the D&D game. Maybe those will have a better chance of seeing print.

Thank you for your time!

Edited by - Melfius on 12 Oct 2004 17:59:45
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  18:51:06  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by Lord Rad
Oh I'd be more than happy to have a third copy - if you manage to convince WotC to rerelease Evermeet as a leatherbound, gilt-edged tome, much like the new 30th anniversary PHB, then i'll be first in the queue.


Ha! And again I say, ha! That's one thing we won't see during our lifetime. Would that my books sold briskly enough to warrant such treatment!

On the other hand, I'd be very interested in doing an expanded, updated, non-leatherbound version of Evermeet to incorporate third edition rules, expand the final battle by about 10,000 words, account for some of the "lost princes of Evermeet," and add an extensive section set during the Crown Wars. A "director's cut" version, if you will. Big ol' honkin' thing.

And for an epilogue, let Arilyn and/or Elaith get hold of Danilo's manuscript....


Edited by - ElaineCunningham on 12 Oct 2004 19:01:13
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ElaineCunningham
Forgotten Realms Author

2396 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  18:57:32  Show Profile  Visit ElaineCunningham's Homepage
quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack
Thank you for taking my mind to a disturbing image of a smiling drow with a power bar in his/her hand. "Always best after a fresh kill."



Better a Power Bar than a bottle of steak sauce...
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Purple Dragon Knight
Master of Realmslore

Canada
1796 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  19:13:23  Show Profile Send Purple Dragon Knight a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham

On the other hand, I'd be very interested in doing an expanded, updated, non-leatherbound version of Evermeet to incorporate third edition rules, expand the final battle by about 10,000 words, account for some of the "lost princes of Evermeet," and add an extensive section set during the Crown Wars. A "director's cut" version, if you will. Big ol' honkin' thing.

And for an epilogue, let Arilyn and/or Elaith get hold of Danilo's manuscript....
Please do!!!!

I always found that battle a little too short... you had enough stuff in that book to do a trilogy... what did I just say?!? why yes! Why don't you make a trilogy based on Evermeet instead of just one expanded book?
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36779 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2004 :  19:14:09  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham

On the other hand, I'd be very interested in doing an expanded, updated, non-leatherbound version of Evermeet to incorporate third edition rules, expand the final battle by about 10,000 words, account for some of the "lost princes of Evermeet," and add an extensive section set during the Crown Wars. A "director's cut" version, if you will. Big ol' honkin' thing.

And for an epilogue, let Arilyn and/or Elaith get hold of Danilo's manuscript....


Ooh, I'd love to see that... I've spent more than a moment or two wondering about the lost royals -- especially the surviving twin, the one that the Ityak-Ortheel didn't get. More on the Crown Wars would be really nice, and I'd love to see that epilogue!

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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Melfius
Senior Scribe

USA
516 Posts

Posted - 14 Oct 2004 :  03:40:12  Show Profile  Visit Melfius's Homepage Send Melfius a Private Message
Ms Cunningham,

I just wanted to say 'thank you' for your words of encouragement. I just finished my first short story (only 3,500 words, but it's a start!) and I'm gonna send it out to Amazing Stories to see what happens.

Thank you for your help!

Melfius, Pixie-Priest of Puck - Head Chef, The Faerie Kitchen, Candlekeep Inn
"What's in his pockets, besides me?"
Read a tale of my earlier days! - Happiness Comes in Small Packages
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