Yes, I’ve been renovating. My brain (hey! I heard that!) and this website. I’m always tinkering as life unfolds, because creativity is tinkering; it’s looking at reality and trying to change it.
So to those of you who’ve written in or talked to me at conventions and at bookstores and in the street, thank you! Your suggestions and opinions matter, and are a great help in guiding me.
I am at heart a storyteller, and telling stories is a service industry. I serve my audience.
So, why a new, improved Edverse? Why am I doing this?
Well, ideas never stop coming, and from time to time the ones that don’t fit the projects at hand, the ones I don’t have a chance to get to, get heaped up in such towering, tottering stacks that they start to fall over onto me, and demand attention.
So, it’s time.
After fifty years in this game and writing or co-writing or contributing to getting on for three hundred releases of various sorts, it’s time to get out some of these ideas and play with them.
And if I’m going to take the time to saddle up these ideas and ride them, I’m riding, er writing things my way.
And my way means working with friends, both those I know well and new ones. So I’ve started The Ed Greenwood Group, which is an incredibly grand name for something I hope will be far less formal but more friendly and relaxed: a creative salon, a sessorium of creative people (writers, artists, musicians, designers of all sorts) who want to hang out together and create together. So if you’re a creative—a visual artist in particular—and you like what you see here and want to play, please contact me. One of our first two settings, Hellmaw, started as some sketches by one artist, working alone on what interested him, and has grown into a multi-year sequence of novels and short stories by more than a dozen writers. This could happen to you.
So as the sun streams in through the windows of my new office, I’m in harness and pushing hard on new projects galore. Yes, my new office. Those of you who’ve dropped by The Edverse in the past and viewed my little videos will notice that I’ve moved out of the basement, and upstairs. Where surrounded by books, books, and more books, I can create more books, books, and more books.
My steampunk romp for Tor Books, The Iron Assassin, will be out this spring. A gaslamp fantasy set in an alternative Victorian London and involving clubs, a clockwork Prometheus, dastardly plots against the throne, beautiful secret agents, sinister cults, mad scientists, and of course airships, it’s just good old ripping yarn fun.
My latest Forgotten Realms® novel, Spellstorm, will also be out this spring. And no, it’s not a sequel to my first Realms novel, Spellfire, from all those years ago, nor a rewrite of it—it’s a completely new and very different sort of book, set in an old mansion in the countryside of Cormyr, the house of a noble where some very powerful wizards—including, of course, Elminster, the Sage of Shadowdale, are confined together—and one by one, they start to die. Murdered. Yes, it’s a “the murderer must be one of us!” mystery.
Nor am I done writing Realms novels; right now, I’m hard at work on my next one, but I can’t say anything about it yet, and you probably won’t see it for a while.
So let’s turn to my other projects, the ones that grew out of those towering stacks of ideas I was talking about.
First up is Hellmaw, which is a string of books and short stories by a bunch of people, all about daemons. Daemons lurking on Earth, among us. I’d been thinking about a series of tales about fell creatures who manipulate humans, mostly regarding us as cattle, for a long time, and when I saw some painted portraits by the artist Eric Belisle, I knew that idea had finally found a home. So, starting with a cheery little novel I’m writing entitled Your World Is Doomed, some very talented writers will be exploring what the daemons known as the Araurra are up to, and what it will all mean for those of us lucky—or unlucky—enough to survive. This would make a great television series (hint, hint), and from what I’ve seen so far, it’s going to be fun. Scary, creepy fun.
Those of you familiar with the first and largest fantasy setting I created, the Forgotten Realms®, will know that worldbuilding fantasy settings is what I do. I create them and then go right on detailing them and telling unfolding interwoven stories galore in them, year after year, giving readers and gamers imaginary homes for their dreams, places they can return to often to taste the sort of adventures real life—with its lack of hurled whiz-bang magic, just comeuppances, and dragons—just can’t provide. So I’ve created a vast new fantasy setting to tell stories in, different stories than I tell in the Realms, and I’ve invited a lot of my friends, writers I respect and am a fan of, to come and tell stories there too. The result is something we’ve codenamed “Pony Island Adventures” for now, but don’t worry; it’s not about ponies, and there are only a handful of islands, but it will plunge deep and with gusto into adventures, all right. Lots of adventures. In a detailed world where there are wars and intrigues and a lot of tension, but whose inhabitants live a wide and colorful variety of lives, so the writers helming PIA stories will be telling everything from good old swords and sorcery exploits to epic fantasy, from down-and-dirty thieving in crumbling ports to backlands lives where folk on the run from rulers and mighty wizards try unsuccessfully to hide from the wider world. “Pony Island Adventures” is going to be big. And it’s not the Realms disguised, it’s a new and different world centered around characters and their stories. So if you love Middle Earth or the Witch World, Amber or Westeros, It’s time to fall in love with a vast and sprawling fantasy world again—from all sorts of viewpoints, and in all flavours of storytelling, from romance to crawling horror to swordplay cloaked in witty repartee. I’ll be kicking off the Pony Island saga with a novel I’m calling Between My Usual Murders, probably next year.
But Hellmaw and Pony Island are far from the only ideas I’ve been playing with. Some gamers will be familiar with one of my gamers, who betimes posts at the Candlekeep website under the pseudonym of The Hooded One, and her rather wanton, lusty side. She and I—who both grew up in the wildly er, unbuttoned decade of the 1960s, and the almost equally hedonistic 1970s—have collaborated on a little work of erotic remembrances. Spilling the steamy, one might term it, but we’re calling it All Is Lust.
And then it’s time to admit that the days and months and years march along (because however much we may want to, none of us can stop them), and as a result, fifty years—yes, fifty!—have passed since a young Eddie Greenwood first sent pencil to paper and started scribbling about something called the Forgotten Realms.® So to mark that anniversary, I’ve decided to look back at the creation of the Realms, letting fans peek behind the scenes and answering some perennial queries about this or that facet or detail of what has become the world’s largest and most detailed fantasy setting.
Yet even with all of this writing, writing, and more writing, I’m not going to spend my entire year chained to my keyboard in my nice new office. I’ll be attending Ad Astra, the annual Toronto-area get-together for fantasy and sf fans and pros, where I’ll be giving a Worldbuilding workshop and meeting with many members of the Sessorium—and anyone who’s interested in joining and playing with me, too! Ad Astra takes place April 10th, 11th, and 12th.
And of course, my year isn’t complete without attending GenCon, the huge gaming convention held in downtown Indianapolis, where I get to meet my friends old and new, and perhaps this year even announce some exciting new things! I haven’t missed a GenCon since 1983 (yes, that’s thirty-one unbroken years, and I attended two before that), and it’s the big one. This year, it’s earlier than usual: July 30th through August 2nd.
Also this year, I’ll be back at GameholeCon in Madison, Wisconsin (November 6th through 8th), a great gaming convention (if you’re a roleplaying gamer, you have got to see THE Gamehole! And Madison is just down the road from where the old TSR was, so expect to see a lot of grand old names in gaming) where I plan to get together with my fellow Sessorium members and plot and plan a bright future for us all!
I am really excited to be moving forward with these projects, and I hope you will enjoy it all, as it appears (and there’ll be more than just books! We have surprises up our sleeves, not just our arms!). I’ll be talking about it all here at The Edverse as various things unfold, so check back soon—and often!—for updates.
I spin stories, and I have a lot of friends and colleagues whom I admire who’ll be playing with me, and I can’t wait to see what they come up with.
Won’t you ride with me?