Friday, January 29, 2010

Black Festival Going to Press

I am proud and excited to offer our first Swords & Sorcery fiction in the form of my novella, "Black Festival."

My Barbarian Frank, Wolfar, dominates this tale of 20,000+ words along with his off-and-on companion the rogue, Thekela.  Written in the style of Gardner Fox's and REH's Kyrik and Conan tales, I know that this will satisfy.  This will soon be available from Noble Knight games (link above).  We are only issuing 150 impressions and they will be signed and numbered by myself.  Be looking for a *specific* release date in the next 2 weeks from myself and NKG.

If anyone has questions, feel free to ask away.  Here's the prolog and back page matter...


Timeshadows said...

Wishing you well with this release.
--Exciting. :)

Rob Kuntz said...

Thanks Timeshadows! :) I know that you've written fiction yourself and that Journalizer does too, so it's good to get nods and best wishes from these quarters.

grodog said...

It's good to see that Wulfgar's getting his own tome, Rob! Is the release of the book pending in the next few weeks, or are you going to be giving us a date for a date (so to speak)?


Rob Kuntz said...

Hi Gro,

Thanks for the discs, as I got them today. :)

Eh, "Wolfar" (your "F" for 'finger' slipped to the "G" for 'goof'... ;) )

Yes, Black Festival is laid out and I am going over it for the next three days getting everything looking pretty and doing some last minute changes here or there. I am inspired to write two more stories for him from my notes, but must finish the one on Zayene first (at 4,700 words and on hold as I finish other works). Part of the disc matter you sent relates to the ending I had in mind for this story as it is set in the Jungle of Huhm, btw. :)

Black Festival will be available before Garycon2 for sure (2-3 weeks from now tops). El Raja Key will follow close behind as I am now up to 9,000 words with that plus having completed the immense task of describing each differing feature on the 3 maps (consider the work I did with this for the unique graphics on BC and multiply by 4, as these were way more in depth and complicated).

Also Gene Palmer's work has been finished--looks great, very creative stuff from Gene, he keeps twisting the knob of change so that one does not know quite what to expect--and I am about to start editing that and laying that out, as well.

Busy, Busy. No rest here. Plus some other news on the horizon as my creative juices wind up for March.

Andrew (better known as Drew) said...

Glad to see this is finally going to press, Rob. Can't wait to read it!!! ;-)

Anonymous said...

Wow! You're doing an insane amount of work.... but I guess that is expected when crafting WORLDS!

I love your back cover synopsis:

"Evil cultists, a hidden city, dead kings that still walk, demons..."

Good thing it's only fantasy...
or is it possible the unreal is actually REAL?
I bet your worlds exist on the astral plane. So, I hope the good guys always win.

I guess I'll have to read Black Festival to find out-- or at least until I learn to astral project ;)

Can't wait for the release. Thanks for the 'heads-up'!

Tom said...

Looking forward to getting my hands on this book. Sounds like a new pulp classic and the plot reminds me a bit like Solomon Kane. What ever happened to the Drystaff short stories? and will the books be all set in the same fantasy world setting?. Or will they all have their seperate place, and are they based around AD&D 1st ed, with monsters and terms?

Rob Kuntz said...

@ JOURNALIZER. Worlds and worlds...

The illusion of the Real.. another great story title...

The astral plane? Heh. You know I wake up every morning with this extremely weird sense of humor like I have been visiting the "Cosmic Clown" in my wayfarings during dream. It subsides only slightly as the real world comes into focus.

Black Festival was written in 1990, actually, and submitted at first to "DimeNovels" but was returned unread as the company had folded in between my crafting the tale. See my upcoming related post on them. It has been buried in a pile of manuscripts since then and I am excited to dust it off and give it its due, finally.

I really enjoy reading your fiction on your blog, your Journal Entries, but I have also commented by email about that. Thanks! :)

Rob Kuntz said...


Thanks for the encouragement! I do not know if it will be a "classic". Here's hoping I've paid attention to the craft after all these years. It is largely influenced by the great pulp fiction writers like Leiber, Burroughs, Howard, C. L. Moore and Kline, as well as others as I've noted in my attached bio in the work. Your analogy to Solomon Kane is an interesting one for similarities in character, though Wolfar is not directly the crusading type as Kane is. His adventures are inspired largely by his association with Benefice, and Benefice as an instigator against the rise of evil in all forms stands in relation to him in varying degrees removed or involved. Thus his influenced rise as a champion of good is less than always directed to such matters, which allows me free rein with his development along many lines, including going back to his youthful adventures before meeting Benefice.

I sometimes see him as Leiber's Fafhrd in consort with Ningauble but on a less manipulative and more ideologically cooperative scale. He has that same carefree style in relation to the world and its extravagances like Leiber's hero-rogue. So he might be part Conan, part Kyrik, part Kane, part Fafhrd, but I hope and believe that makes him a unique character.

The Drystaff stroies are coming! :) Thanks for mentioning them! David Coalter, editor for Black Festival, some months ago finished going over these even older tales. The first three will see publication in combined form in the next few months and as #2 in our fiction Chapbook series.

Based upon reactions to this I will consider publishing the novel which is also edited and ready to go, but that will be perfect bound and a color cover.

As for the literary lands that both Drystaff and Wolfar "bear" from, they are different. Wolfar's is one of historical-fantasy, set in the ever changing scenery of SE Francia but extending about the Mediterranean. A very colorful time period in history.

Drystaff has his own "world" setting I created a map for some 15 or more years ago. This setting also includes other characters and story lines for novels, shorts and related tales that I have fragments for, have outlined or have great parts finished ("Culinary Delights" @100+ pages).

Only my adventures describing Lord R (Lord of the Green Dragons) and his comrades and associates bear from the OD&D/AD&D days and those will be selected for a fiction release before the end of the year. About a full half are finished and will include a revision of "Journey to the City of the Gods." They will include a selection of "Fables of the Grey Lands" as well.

Lord Ghul of Hyperborea said...

Best of luck with the fiction, Rob. I can appreciate how difficult it can be, and in fact I've had a recent tale in the hands of an editor for about 4 months now, but that is better than a rejection letter, eh? ;) Do let us know here at LotGD when this novella is officially released.

Jeff T.

Rob Kuntz said...

Will do Ghul, and good luck! The reason I do not have specifics right now is that after it goes to press it is shipped directly to Noble Knight. When they receive it I will know for certain, as I will be at NKG autographing them and then we will have a firm date. Should be no later than 3 weeks tops and then we will be informing folks in various internet fora and by email.

Timeshadows said...

Rob, published though I am, I have not yet met with any critical success, and have had issues with my publisher regarding royalties.

I am certain that you will enjoy success, and that you will be bitten by the bug and will write more.
--I am eagerly awaiting your memoirs, as well. :D

All the best,
(remembering to check the 'e-mail notification' box/link this time.)


Rob Kuntz said...

Hey TS. Thanks for the continued encouragement.

Sorry for the miscues with your publisher, they should be drawn and quartered (quarterly) ;) If your dedication to fiction is as deep as it is to your world and rules crafting, I am sure there are some "bug-bites" waiting nearby for you as well. :)

Timeshadows said...

Very kind of you, Rob.

I can hope. :)

Anonymous said...

Excellent, this!! Ready to order ~ :-D

Rob Kuntz said...

Thanks Rhu! I just sent this baby to press so I should hear back from the printer tomorrow about it; then there's autographing, traveling to NKG (50 miles away) and all that "stuff". I'm pretty excited. The novella looks very good and I learned a few tricks laying it out, as well. :)

Next, Castle El Raja Key, editing Gene's great submission and the Three Tales of Dystaff, all of the latter written in that witty Vancian dark humor that EGG "forced" upon me daily. :)