Gen Con 2014

OK, on Sunday I got back from Gen Con where I was a guest of Goodman Games — I had never been to a Con before (with the exception of walking into U-Con in Ann Arbor, playing one game and then leaving — I also went to another Con years ago and showed by art portfolio to a couple of publishers, but I had forgotten all about that until I sat down to write this). When I walked into GenCon, I was a bit overwhelmed — so much to see, so many people to meet. I’m not going to make a list for fear of leaving some people off of it… but I never imagined that any event could be that big. It was a bit overwhelming but the Goodman crew was a group of the nicest people you will ever meet and they made me feel very welcome. Lots of people came by to shake my hand and ask me to sign their books, which was really quite flattering. And Harley Stroh ran a con event where players ran a series of 0-level player characters through a funnel and the players who survived the greatest number of encounters with a sinle 0 level cheese maker, gong farmer or stable boy (or stable girl, I guess), got a chance to win a trophy. There were 3 trophies (I wish I took a photo — they looked great) with a statue of a “grave digger” in gold, bronze or rusted iron… and 3 players all tied for 1st with an incredible 8 survivals each… so they had a ‘roll off’ to decide who left with which trophy.

I didn’t get to play much of anything — I arrived late Friday because of work and other issues, worked in the booth Saturday, ate dinner and crashed, came back Sunday morning for the award ceremony and then had to roll back to Michigan aroun noon. I’m normally pretty reclusive – I don’t like crowds and didn’t think I would like cons but everyone was so fucking nice I would go back in a heartbeat. I got halfway back to Michigan before I realized that I had never made it down to Doug Kovac’s art exhibit — so I am going to have to go back I guess.

There were a lot of people dressed up as Anime characters that I didn’t know (I would describe most of them as ‘Dragonballz or others’ since Dragonballz is the only Anime name I know) and people dressed up as superheroes and a lot of people walking around with boxes on their heads (it took me a while to figure out these were ‘Minecraft’ people) as well as all kinds of other costumes… a lot of pirates, people who looked like they were going to or coming from a rave, women (and men) in corsets and kilts, people in head-to toe spandex and people wearing just a few thongs, scraps of fur and beads, stormtroopers (the Star Wars kind), robots, cartoon characters and other creatures. I saw (but was too intimidated to talk to) Will Wheaton — he has a really cool tattoo of an octopus on his arm. Mostly it was hard to get around because there were SO MANY PEOPLE there.

Lost Pet

I seem to have fallen completely out of the blogging thing and social media. Sorry, world. (edit)gretel last picture web

Gretel, right after having been euthanized. I held her head in my hands as she died. R.I.P., dear friend. We will miss you.

One of our dogs had to be put down last week. Gretel was about 12 and half years old — she had a sudden and aggressive tumor growing in her jaw on the right side of her face. She was a chow/lab mix from the local rescue shelter and had one of the sweetest dispositions of any animal I have ever known — although this dog was a plague upon the local squirrel and groundhog populations. She just liked killing things.

I kind of doubt I’m going to continue blogging here (or anywhere else). I just don’t have the feeling that anything that I have to say is worth sharing.

(later edit: I’m told this post is unusually cryptic and despondent sounding. I’m not intending to inspire a pity party — I just feel like I might be done with blogging. I used to be interested in what other people were writing and looked forward to what I would be writing/thinking/posting next… and at some point that enthusiasm evaporated. Part of it was, well, the general douche-y-ness of so many members of ye olde internet. But I also just wasn’t interested in hearing my own voice within the echo chamber anymore.  Maybe I’ll blog again, but probably not about OSR gaming).


Happy New Year; Kim Jong-il looks at things

This is your obligatory ‘Happy New Year’ post.

Also, I have finally found a use for ‘Tumblr.’  Today I discovered a Tumblr collection of photographs of the late Kim Jong-il looking at things.  These include pictures of the late dear leader looking at plants, food, shops, products, farms, people, etc.  The Tumblr site linked above also sells a book.

Here is a favorite: Kim Jong-il looking at very large watermelons:

kim jong-il looking at watermelons

Bad Treebeard

Bad Treebeard

Those tree people always seemed so nice in the ‘Lord of the Rings’ movie. But, looking at this picture, I am no longer so sure. What did Johnny do to deserve getting ‘manhandled’ by a tree like that?

Excellent picture courtesy of “The Horrors of it All“!

Fletcher Hanks

I’m avoiding doing some chores by posting these excellent images by Fletcher Hanks:



wild and primitive




flying head fanta09


Cave Worms

I’ve been going through some serious artists-block lately. Here’s one drawing I did in my notebook while sitting at the airport that I kind of like — perhaps the first step to conquering the creative constipation.

airport cave worms

“Into the Demon Idol”

Jobe Bittman (also see Spellburn) was part of a one page dungeon contest a while back (see his really great map here — I love love love 3d cut-away illustrations)… and he turned that 1 page into a little book which apparently you can buy soon (I don’t have that info yet; will update when I do).

He asked me to do the cover/1st page illustration, which is pretty cool — see somebody’s autographed copy below. I’ve seen the front cover in a PDF version (I don’t have the real thing yet) and it is HELIOTROPE done up in the old circa 1978 TSR 2 color printing style — looks really cool.

photo (26)

Will add more details when I get them!

This photo is from Rick Hull, someone on Google+ who owns this copy and was showing it off on google+.

UPDATE: Here is the cover in color. The lizard dude who is getting squished in the demon idol’s hands and has his eyeballs popping out cracks me up:

into the demon idol


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