I’m taking a bit of a break from writing Voidstrider volume four to let some of the difficult plot elements rearrange themselves in my subconscious, and using the time to bang out a standalone side project.
I posted last year about running a DnD campaign online for a single player on the other side of the Atlantic. We wrapped up the initial campaign in the summer, around when I went back to work. Since then, our respective schedules have been hectic and we haven’t launched a second one.
We created that campaign pretty much wholly from scratch. There aren’t a great many single-player campaigns out there. (More than there used to be, though!)
My new project is adapting that campaign (set in DnD’s Faerun world) into a cyberpunk novel. There are difficulties in translation, you might say. But I’ve got the major beats figured out and I’m enthusiastic about the project.
It’s going to be standalone, although there may be an equally standalone sequel should we ever run another campaign with the character. However, it is set in the same universe as Voidstrider. It takes place on Earth (a somewhat neglected setting in the Saga novels) about 50 years before Voidstrider.
That decision, by the way, adds some constraints which enhance the difficulty of the adaptation. There are things, for example, that explicitly “are impossible” or “have never been done” in the earlier books that I can’t have people doing five decades earlier, right? (If I weren’t being so vague, I could give you the perfect example, but I’ll just say it has to do with the central fucking plot point of the whole thing.)
Voidstrider is space opera, but there are a few cyberpunk-ish elements. Roger Jon Grey, a sort of antihero becoming ever more the villain in each book, has a bunch of implants and livewires for connecting to machines and says things like “meatspace.” But the actual themes and philosophies of the genre are generally absent.
In translating our campaign’s villains and their nefarious plot from high fantasy into tropes more suited to science fiction, I’ve arrived at what might be a plot perfectly suited to the actual substance of cyberpunk. And by tying it in the Voidstrider universe, maybe I can flesh out those worlds just a bit more.
So, yeah. Pretty excited. Back to work now.