The text contained below on this page is not the work of Candlekeep. This text is taken from the rec.games.frp.dnd newsgroup and included here for information purposes. Thanks to Sage of Perth for providing this.
The Origin of the Moonshae Isles
By Jeff Grubb
Way back when Dragonlance was fresh and new and Forgotten Realms was just getting its start as a game product in design, there was going to be a "British Dragonlance" product from TSR. TSR UK was to produce the game material, and Doug Niles was to write the novel - the novel that became Darkwalker on Moonshae. They were supposed to work together.
Bad things happened, from a business side, and TSR UK stopped producing creative work (they let their designers go and reverted to merely selling TSR material from the states). The British DL never happened. Doug had a half-written book and no world to put it in.
At the same time, Ed and I were working on what would become the original "slate-grey" FR box. We had a world, but novels as yet. The appearance of Darkwalker made it possible to get an FR book out with the boxed set - in fact, to get the book out FIRST.
We looked at Doug's book and Ed's World. It was a good fit, both being rooted strongly in "traditional fantasy." Compromises were made. Doug took the name of extant island grouping in the Realms. Ed accepted the change of the appearance of the islands (they were an arching archipelgio as opposed to british-shaped chunk). The world was new and we had not published yet.
It WAS a good fit. Doug finished his tale in the Realms, the Realms itself launched with a strong book, and we established the Realms as a place of many visions - Doug, Bob, myself, Ed, and those who have followed.
An addendum by Ed Greenwood
The 'original' Moonshaes are akin to LeGuin's Earthsea: hundreds of little islands, long-extinct volcanic peaks that rise up out of the sea abruptly, are inhabited by fisherfolk (with a few larger islands that have forests, farms, etc.) nothing much above the rural village culture on most, with self-styled 'lords' on others...and like Earthsea, somewhat like the Celtic-era Hebrides...they occupy the same space as TSR's (Doug Niles's) Moonshaes, arcing from a 'wide spray' at the Sword Coast or eastward extent, curving and narrowing southwest and curving to south...in other words, a large area of 'perilous sea' with awash rocks, reefs, etc. and safe channels that only the locals know.
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