Players of the Game Character Spotlight: Gnorok

Gnorok (the G is silent) is a one of Ashe Stelfire’s best friends.  He pretends to be a Demon mercenary.  In truth, he’s Dragon-Human hybrid called a Murdrake.  He and Ashe start out as competing rivals, but the pair of them soon find they work well together.  Gnorok also gets romantically entangled with Salatha, a Wred Witch with questionable loyalty to their cause.  He leads the Brigands.  Always from the front with his blade bared.

James McGowan Reader Group- All’s Fair in the Book Fair

Hi, everyone! I’m participating in the August Sci-Fi and Fantasy Book Fair.  Repenter and the Hidden Chapters books are part of the promo along with a bunch of other books.  Over a hundred of them.  All of them on the house.  Check them out and enjoy!

Check Out the August SFF Book Fair (August 2022)
Players of the Game Works in Progress
I’ll be sending out a bonus email later this month with the details on the release of my new bonus content book, Players of the Game: Origins.  It will be available in ebook and paperback formats.  More on that next time.

In the meantime, the Game War’s first draft clocks in at 351 pages with about 99,200 words.  Last month’s stats had me at page 305 with about 86,000 words.  Decent, not great, but decent.  However, I’ll like have 100k cracked in a day or two, which is another milestone.

Work in Progress Out of Context Quote of the Month:

Marcrinus: “Welcome to Crystal Keep. Don’t expect anyone else to thank you for helping.”
Recommendation Corner
The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

I got this book in a white elephant gift exchange years ago at my writers’ group’s holiday party.  Far and away the best such bonus gift I’ve ever received.  A big concept of this book that has stuck with me is the concept of Resistance.  It’s defined as anything that either hinders or completely stops you from continuing with your creative endeavor.  It could be stuff in your life getting in the way, both good stuff and bad stuff.  I definitely experienced plenty of both categories this month.  Or it can just be the inner slog as you slowly chip away at your story or any other project.  Yep.  I had plenty of that this month too.  The book’s big strategy is to realize that Resistance is always there and each writing/creative session is a new chance to either overcome Resistance or let it overcome you.  Highly recommended for any creative person who’s looking for some inspiration.

Obi-Wan Kenobi on Disney+

This one is more of a half recommendation.  I loved Ewan McGregor’s return to the character.  It starts with him in a very dark place and very emotionally broken.  It had some fantastic Force and light saber battles, especially in the final episode.  It was hindered by characters making a lot of nonsensical decisions because the plot demanded it.  So many people did not die because the victor of a battle just walked away or let something like a fire make an artificial end to a conflict.  I was neutral on the Leia subplot.  But again, Obi-Wan is a great character, and James Earl Jones still has the vocal chops for a menacing Vader, so I still call it worth watching.
Check Out the Players of the Game Series on Kindle and Paperback
That’s all for this time.

Stay smart.  Stay safe.


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Players of the Game Character Spotlight: Salatha

Salatha is one of the Brigands.  She possesses both innate psionic powers and hard-learned prowess in mancy.  She counts herself as one of the more skilled Wred Witches.  Salatha’s ultimate loyalty between the Brigands and her sisterhood is often a point of tension.  Her relationship with Ashe in particular ranges from subdued distrust to grudging respect.  She is romantically involved with his best friend, which only makes the question of her trustworthiness all the more tangled.

James McGowan Reader Group- Sun in the Fun

Hey, all!

To all my US-based readers, Happy Fourth of July.  To all my non-US-based readers, also happy fourth of July.

Capitalization word play aside, I have once again been out enjoying the sun on walks through the neighborhood and doing yard work.  I absolutely love this time of the year.  It stays light outside late and everything is green and alive.  And while I don’t necessarily care for excessive heat, I like it far more than the cold of winter.  I’m am very much a summer baby, though my baby days are far in the rear view.

One thing that’s been constant regardless of my age is my sweet tooth.  I’m a big fan of ice cream cones and malts this time of year.  Marshmallow and Raspberry are among my favorite malt flavors.  Blue almond and rainbow sherbet are my go-to ice cream cone varieties.  What kind of summer treats do you enjoy either now, or in six months if you’re in the southern hemisphere?

Players of the Game Works in Progress
This month’s update for the Game War’s first draft clocks in at page 305 with about 86,000 words.  Last month’s stats were page 253 with 71,700 words.  Not too bad.  Plus it’s a milestone to reach page 300 in about six months since I started in late December-ish.  I’m likely around halfway there.  Did I mention that I like to write epics?

Work in Progress Out of Context Quote of the Month: Vermillion: “I don’t tell people what they want to hear, Arms Master.”
Recommendation Corner
Top Gun: Maverick

This movie was a really pleasant surprise.  I wasn’t really expecting much from it.  It’s a really fun popcorn movie.  It’s also a very compelling portrayal of characters dealing with grief.  I’d argue that Goose’s absence is the second main character in the movie, especially with the call back to the Great Balls of Fire scene from the first one.  The mostly practical jet action was awesome with the double Death Star-style trench run.  Plus they played Danger Zone at the beginning again.  As you might have surmised from my email address, I have an affinity for that word.

Symphony of War

This Steam game is something I’ve been wanting for years and years.  An homage to one of my all-time faves: Ogre Battle, the old strategy role playing game from the Super Nintendo days.  The movement of groups of small teams, capturing towns, and outmaneuvering your enemy  is just the bee’s knees.  I wish some of the sprites weren’t so “meeple” looking, but that’s a minor quibble.  Totally fun stuff if you’re into that kind of thing.
Check Out the Players of the Game Series on Kindle and Paperback
That’s all for this time. Stay smart.  Stay safe. Jim

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