Tag Archives: Silver Serpent

State of Tellest, October 2017

Holy heck! I had no idea it’s been so long since I did a blog post for Tellest. It’s about time to change that up then, I suppose, and what a time it is!

I have got an awful lot to talk about, so let’s get down to business, shall we?

 

Tellest Legends Books

The Tellest Legends project ended up getting a lot bigger than I expected! While Tales of Tellest was a set of novellas, each of these Tellest Legends books is a little bigger. Silver Serpent, the next one up in the queue, is much bigger than the books I’ve done recently.  Intended only to be about 50,000 words for last year’s NaNoWriMo, it ended up becoming a 210,000 word novel. It’s the biggest book I’ve worked on since The Enemy Within, and is nearly as long as The Bindings of Fate.

Now, part of this is awesome news. In my opinion, this is the best book I’ve ever written—not because of the word count, but because of the time and care I put into it. The downside is that there is a lot of work there, and it needs to be carefully curated in order to be ready for release. It’s already put me at a bit of a delay. It’s gone through its first editor pass and come back to me, and I have to clean it up before it gets delivered to our second editor.

Originally, the plan was to get it released last month. That unfortunately will not happen, but it will be out soon. Unfortunately, its delay has impacted the other books that are also coming out—Arise, Heart of the Forest, Stealing Seramore, The Maelstrom and the second short story collection are all coming a little later because of Silver Serpent. I thank everyone for their patience while I get these stories prepared.

 

Quantum Quest

Another big culprit of the writing delays is our upcoming tie-in tabletop game.  Quantum Quest is a massive undertaking spanning almost three years, and we’re trying to give it the best chance it has to shine before we go to Kickstarter with it next month.  We’ve been holding playtests, gathering fans, working on new cards and so on all summer long. As we draw closer and closer to November, you can be sure I’m going to end up losing my mind a little more each day—I can’t wait!

Fans of Tellest are going to get an early preview of our campaign page in the next couple of weeks, but I can give you a preview excerpt right now:

“This is where things start getting really awesome. We’re offering up a pack of adventurer cards that you can only get here on Kickstarter or directly from us when we attend conventions—these will never be available at retail. And that’s just to start—the more we raise, the more you get. “

Suffice it to say, we’re incredibly excited for Kickstarter next month. I feel like we’re batting 1000 with this game, and I can’t wait to show it off some more.  If you’re at PAX Unplugged, definitely consider stopping by our table to play a game yourself!

 

NaNoWriMo 2017

This one ties into Quantum Quest in a big way because… it’s the Quantum Quest novelization!  Yep.  My aim is to get 50,000 or so words cranked out by the end of November that will add some lore and backstory to our upcoming tabletop game. Since we also have the Kickstarter going on, this is the first year where NaNoWriMo has to come secondary, so I’m not 100% certain that it’ll be finished, or that it’ll be 50,000 words.  That said, I’m going to make sure the book is complete and polished by the time Quantum Quest reaches backers in May of 2018.

Here’s another bonus: Everyone who backed the Tellest Legends Kickstarter is going to get a copy of the ebook since it’s pushing off the other books.

 

Short Stories

Short stories are going to continue to fill in the gaps between the big releases.  We have a couple of stories that are currently backlogged, and we have two holiday stories coming as well.  Once Silver Serpent moves onto the second editor, we’ll make sure these stories get their chance to shine.

 

That’s it for now, but you can be certain we’ll be talking a lot in November, on account of the Quantum Quest Kickstarter.  See you soon!

Silver Serpent Cover

We have a lot of books coming out this year (and next), and we’re still not 100% done with the writing or the art, so it’s always great when we have something in place, don’t you think?

Today, we’re showing off artwork for a new property featuring an old fan favorite.

Silver Serpent essentially shows us the origins of our favorite ranger in green, Steel Tip.  Back then, he’s doesn’t go by the oft-mocked moniker, though.  Instead, he’s the protege of the legendary Silver Serpent, a vigilante who has protected the archipelago of Ippius for generations.

This story fully embraces the superhero feel of the series, so we did some really cool things with our characters.  We were lucky to have our artists, RedPear and DLeoBlack on hand to bring these characters to life.  Above, you’ll see as things are sliding into place.

Here, things are cleaned up a bit more, and we get our first look at the various characters in a more colorful form.  You can see our two de facto heroes on the right side, while monstrous beings like the gargoyle-like creature in back and the man made of water in the front seem to have their sights set on the Silver Serpent and her young pupil.

We took our characters out of the piece in order to clean various things up.  The aurora was given a less clunky feel, while the stones surrounding this lookout point were left a little more weathered.

Moving forward, we added our characters and the fire back into place.  Our gargoyle lost a little weight, the heroes gained a few extra details, and our man made of water is just a little splashier.

Finally, we made one last change.  We weren’t in love with the color of the Silver Serpent’s hair or her pose, so Leo scrapped the whole thing and redid her.  Turned out great!

Silver Serpent will release in September of this year!

Interim Cover Art – Silver Serpent Chronicles

Hey there folks!  We are deep in the heart of Tellest phase two.  Lord of Thunder recently released, and we’re only two months away from the second book, Dragonspeaker, hitting virtual shelves.

Later this year, in September, we’ll be releasing another new jump-off point in the Tellest brand with Silver Serpent Chronicles.  One or two characters here are familiar, but it takes place in a different point in our young sidekick’s life.

Rather than droll on, why don’t I just show you what we did?

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All five of the sketches above were the ones we passed on. Ultimately, we knew we wanted to focus on the Silver Serpent and her young, impressionable trainee, who goes by many names in the story.  You might know him instead as Kevin, the secret prince of Argos.

We ended up going for a scene that added a third character to the mix.  These three are characters that are involved from the very first chapter of the story to the very end, so it was cool to have them all together on the cover.

These two sketches helped to get an idea of the costumes and color schemes a little bit more.  Kevin wears a variation of his well-known green, and they both have kind of a lone ranger look to them.  This book has a more superhero bent than the other books I’ve written so far.  I’m a big fan of it, though, and I think others will be too.

Pear put together a more comprehensive look at everything here. Our characters are on a dais that overlooks the city here.  The third member of the trio is a villain named Riptide who can turn his body into liquid form and reconstitute as needed.

Riptide and the Silver Serpent have been fleshed out here, and the cool swirling water effect has been brought back in an awesome way.  The poses are coming together a little more too, thanks to some textures on the ground.

Weapons and gear have been detailed, and you can see the faces of our two heroes, although they’re covered by their domino masks and the Silver Serpent’s tricorne hat.

The final version of the cover adds particle effects and extra detail to everything.  Riptide’s body ends up making some cool warps to the items beneath, including the Silver Serpent’s rapier.  I personally think it looks awesome.  This was another hard piece not to want to use as an official cover.  For consistency’s sake, we used this piece as inspiration, and brought it to Leo so that he could make us an official cover, but that’ll be something we show you later!

So what did you think of the Silver Serpent Chronicles interim cover?  Did you like it as much as we did?  Remember, this book comes out in September.

And it’s going to change everything…