Reading about Sir Francis Walsingham and the shadowy war of espionage and counter-intelligence in the Court of Queen Elizabeth has been entertaining me on multiple levels. I’m covering several bases here – which is nice.
Firstly, it’s my period of choice.
I never consciously made a decision to solely focus on one period, but somehow it has happen. I seem to have focussed, over time, on late Tudor. Mainly social history, though I’m willing to venture into politics, warfare and other areas as the occasion takes me.
I’m currently reading The Watchers: A Secret History of the Reign of Elizabeth I and Danubia: A Personal History of Habsburg Europe, while I’ve recently read The Sorcerer’s Tale: Faith and Fraud in Tudor England and The Queen’s Conjuror.
It’s proved entertaining, to say the least – though you personal opinion on how enjoyable it would be might vary. For me, this is heaven. I could read this stuff all the time if only someone would allow me to retire gracefully from the humdrum life of working for The Man.
Why the specific reading around spies and sorcery in the Tudor Court?
Well, that’s the second base – my work on the 214 game system and The Dee Sanction game background. You can see more about that at complex214.com and omegacomplex.com, where I have been posting a fair bit. I’m seeking to keep focus by posting a lot. If I’m writing about it, I’m thinking about it. While I think about it, I get flashes of inspiration and fresh ideas. Usually in the shower.
Getting back to writing has been good. I have been working hard supporting my wife in getting the All Rolled Up business moving along. That has absorbed me for a good 18 months or more now. We have spent a lot of time creating the product, marketing online, and selling it to people directly at conventions.
Once, we attended the conventions as participants. I generally went along to GM something. Now, we spend a lot of time on the All Rolled Up stall enlightening people to the new world of the ARU game roll and dice bag.
I still get to GM. That’s where the third base gets coverage.
While I will be running sessions for 214, I also want to keep my hand in with other systems. Reading all this history offers me background for The Dee Sanction, but occasionally it offers other insight and ideas. Yesterday, my cross-referencing got me an idea for TimeWatch – and I plan to run that at conventions next year. It would be nice to have my Kickstarter copy of book in hand. Fingers crossed.
That’s why I’m having fun reading – it gives back far more than the effort it takes to do it in the first place. Probably explains why I spend my time juggling a half dozen books at a time instead of reading just one – I’m enjoying myself that much, I just want more.