The "Things we should write" thread

Scrap everything.

Add back in the bits which are interesting and work for you.

That's my opinion because

a) most people can't access the sourcebook for free.
b) Shannon's a great writer, and I'm a serious fan, but he wrote this back before Google. The idea that Sicily rates mention as a barren rock where the last tribe of werewolves in Europe hangs out, for example, is now silly.
c) It was set before the rise of Frederick II, known destroyer of paradigms and official Marvel of the World.
d) Demons under every rock.
e) Systemic theme of corruption is boring.
f) THeme that magic is fading out of the world no longer works.
g) Faeries are limmerant now.
h) God works differently now.
I) We don't feel angsty about Catholics now.
j) There are more magi now.
k) Redcaps are different now.
l) Hoplites exist.
m) We have noticed magi can make money quite simply.
n) We have noticed magi can get mortal power without having to give up their souls for it.
o) This list is so long that if you red-penned the old book you'd have nothing left.
p) Seriously cool stuff is happening in Naples which is linked to the New House Tytalus and Tremere.
q) The trade republics matter.
r) The book sees the sea as a barrier, rather than a highway.
s) Nightwalkers come from here.
t) Seriously...there's more stuff than you can shake a stick at here that's just flagged as "boring, nothing to see here" that it's amazing, until you remember that we used to need to use books to write these things.

Some bastard is going to copy this list and paste it into a thread about Sanctuary of Ice... 8(

Though whomever it will be should preferbly remember to fix the name of the Author. :wink:

So, if the community is going to be diving into a full re-write of Rome - and, I'm guessing, Italy by extension - is there going to be some kind of sign-up sheet or assignment of tasks for different things to be written about? Is there going to be one person responsible for the Covenants, and another for the Magi, and another for the Faeries, and one for the Infernal, and so on? Or are people just going to write about whatever they want, submit it to a group of people, and then that group decides what gets in and what doesn't?

On the premise that someone might want to write about more than Rome, I'm going to create a new thread...

For what it is worth, that was partly my intention in the Hooks stories I wrote: they are hooks into different sorts of sagas.

I think that something like "more Hooks" would be really valuable for actual play. Also, they are quite short and self-contained --- which makes them easier to write as a community project.

Please be aware that the "Writing Rome" discussion seems to have forked to

I'm rather fluent with wiki markup, and already have an account at Project Redcap, so I think I'm good to go. I'll just have a look around to see where it might best fit, and then go ahead and start it.

Don't forget Verditius, as well, even though that is in danger of changing in light of the current Primus' (Stouritus) decission to remain in Ingasia, in the Theban Tribunal.

I would like to help, as far as I can (which will probably not be too much).

Same here.

Ditto. I mean I'd like to help, I like the subjects of covenants, magi, Hermetic culture, story seeds etc. But there is no way I'm ever going to be writing hard, historical and geographic facts. It's just not in me to do this level of research - not skills nor interest.
Anyway, whatever happens I think I might just go ahead and actually read the Roman tribunal book in question in its entirety.

So, seeing Rome is headed off in a project management mosaic direction, and I tend to work in smaller collaborative teams...what else?

One thing I've kind of always wanted to do, but couldn't get around to was this: I've noticed that British Goblins by Wirt Skyes is in the public domain. I keep thinking that we could just annotate it using hyperlinks, so that it becomes a layered Ars Magica book. Kind of easy...low research?

Other things: I've often wanted to give copies of The Magnificent Century to every author and have a reading group that boxcutters a chapter week.

I have a Normans and the Millenium thing that has been on the backburner for years.

I know GURPS did a book on this back in 3rd edition, not sure what the copyright status is on that or how it would affect an Ars Magic production...

Not necessarily. But I think perhaps a lot of people don't know any alternatives. What else were you thinking about? That 2-3 people got together and did the book? That still may happen. Theremaybe much enthusiasm and interest, but that does not have to mean 10-12 people try and write it together.

Speaking for myself, I'd be happy just to participate in discussions about e.g. the Hermetic politics and culture, ideas for covenants and plotlines etc. more than writing per se. Sure, I'd like to write about Hermetic structure, plots, covenants, characters. But talking about it, hearing other people's views etc. may be ok.

Maybe people are looking in the direction of an experienced author for guidance as how to do it?

Then I am probably not the best fit for this project, for my desire is to find a way to save everything.

For me, that is almost everything. Not as a carbon copy, much modification indeed, but I can imagine a way to touch on everything just about, and make it seem like a seamless progression of history.

True that, but there is much material beyond the original to create upon as a blank slate, and if part of a team the old bits can be managed by a few that know and explained well enough to those that don't.

Shannon did do awesome work. So did Peter, Jonathan, Mark, and many of the rest. My ideal vision is to honor the old works and draw inspiration from them. Not to copy them, but to pay homage. I do not understand why the Sicily thing is silly. Maybe I am not familiar enough with the history of it. But this so called "last tribe" could be the last of their line/pack, or are ignorant and just think they are the last.

Then there is nothing to revise there. Just add the new information. We need not rewrite the past to include the present. As an aside, Silveroak seems quite knowledgable about Frederik II and may have a lot of information to offer.

There are still demons in Ars Magica, and I see no harm in using a few of these rocks. I also think it would be a cool idea to blame some of that on bad reputations and mysterious cults that merely seem infernal to the ignorant. One rock has a demon, another is a hedgie with the blatant gift falsely accused, another is a strange heritic/mystic, and the fourth could be the real deal and an infernalist that claims to be misunderstood

For some, not for everyone. I do agree though, but I say this can be improved with modification and alteration rather han just scrapping

Yet dwindling vis sources are a reoccuring theme in ArM5. Case in point, Normandy.

You exceeded my vocabulary and I have no idea what you mean. As I am not a fan of 5th edition Faeries, I will plead ignorance and bow out of this subject.

I do not understand what you mean by this. God was always all powerful, and I do not recall anything in Rome that even hints he is not. I will read it again this week and refresh my memory of the whole thing.

There was a lot of that in 3rd edition, I will grant that. Again, I do not remember Rome being that bad about it, but I agree this can be mitigated by some revision (not deletion, revision)

Are there?How many more? Is it that much of a distortion? Is the increase a number to great to be passed off as the growth of 23 years?

How? That different? Really? Things have been added, not really changed. They still wear red hats, deliver messages, and etcetera. They do other stuff too, clarified in 5th edition, but nothing radically different and in need of deletion.

The didn't before? I need to check on that.

Again, I need to study the old text to see why this is an issue.

I repudiate most of your list and disagree with your presumptions. You would rather red-pen for deletion, whereas I would yellow-pen for revision.

That calls for addition, not deletion

Okay. This is an issue why?

This is the one solid point I cannot refute. But the others fall short of the strength of this position.

If you say so. I had thought they were Slavic myself, found in Transylvania. But anyways, there is nothing in the old Rome ook that says "there are no Nightwalkers", so there is nothing to delete. Just something cool to add.

The graveyard of Archmagi is something to see, Varidian's Tomb & Harco & Magvellis are not boring.
Honestly, if the manifesto is to scrap it all and there is nothing worth salvaging, then this project is not for me. It will not hold my interest if I cannot salvage old material. and I will annoy people with my sneaky insistence on slipping it in. I mean, you are looking at the guy who got Delendar and Delendos added back to cannon. :mrgreen:

I can do that if you want :laughing:
But I honestly adore that book also. Pietro is a major facet in the saga I run and a big part of a secret project I am working on.

If there is room for the concept of salvage and revision, then I will be glad to participate. If the goal is to indiscriminately scrap it all, then this project is not for me.

It's the "barren rock" bit that's silly.

Since the fall of the Roman Empire, Sicily (Syracuse) was briefly the site of the Byzantium capital, the island was the site of a Muslim emirate for a couple of hundred years (and therefore the cultural centre responsible for lots of transfer of knowledge between Arab and Christian world), and had a period of Norman rule just ending a bit before 1220. In 1220 it's part of Holy Roman Empire; in fact, Palermo (a city in Sicily) is Frederick II's capital.

In 1220 it is part of the Holy Roman empire with an agreement between Fredrick II and the pope to separate it from the HRE which is largely centered in Germany. Given later events between Fredrick II and the Pope this plan did not come to fruition during Fredrick II's lifetime.

I've thought of a thing we should write.

I think Wales gets really short shrift in Ars. I think it's because it was basically where the Bad Guys lived, and so there was no need to really sort it all out.

I was thinking of annotating Wirt Sykes's British Goblins, but if someone wants to write some geographic stuff for Wales, I think that would be kind of cool. I've sort of nibbled at the edges with Sabrina's Rest on my blog (Bristol Channel) but...yes, I think it's a thing that needs doing eventually.

I'm not familiar with that but it sounds very interesting.
To the Library! There is Research to be done!

Far be it from me to keep you from the Library, but Sykes's booksare in the public domain because he's been dead so long.

Librivox is recording British Goblins into audio, so I was going to announce it as an idea one that was available, but the text is up on Project Gutenberg and Internet Archive.

The holiday Linda and I took to the UK, which should be notorious for anyone who has followed my blog as basically an extended Ars Magica study tour, included me buying a copy of British Goblins at a little shop in Glastonbury. Terrifyingly of all the books I bought in England, it's the only one I have read. I have a good two meters worth of books from that trip I've never gotten around to digesting into Ars Magica form. Actually, tell a lie: we bought a copy of the Folio Society's Dracula at the British National Library for our planned-to-exist baby and I've read that, and we bought a copy of Pterry's "I Shall Wear Midnight" in Edinburgh high street. Those aside, though, I really must get around to cracking open some of those books.

So, it's November on Sunday, and I was wondering if anyone had any plans for writing Ars material this November? Some previous years people have made a good go of it (we've had magic items in the past, CJs list of saints, list of judicial cases, there's probably more if I search for it).

I am currently sadly short on paid work, so may start something, but will probably abandon it if a job comes along. I've been looking at various non-Hermetic bits and looking at which ones I could do a good bit of sample characters, spells/applications of their powers, spirits/ creatures they would deal with, magical places, scenario ideas, enough to make them runnable. I did a scenario of Amazons for Grand Tribunal UK a few years back, which had 5 sample Amazons and a couple of new spells each, the scenario was very short but it showcased them nicely.

Oh, and was another topic on a similar vein. I wasn't so hot on writing Ars fiction, but it might inspire others.