The Lure of the Sea

Oh dear. It’s got me bad. I must go down to the sea again – to the lonely sea and the sky. Here I am, simply wondering about creating a rich adventure for my Steam Highwayman readers, so that they don’t feel short-changed while exploring a Cornwall that never was… and the overflowing gameplay of taking your adventure to sea is causing serious feature creep.

And I’m just going to go for it! If I had an editor, perhaps they’d tell me to reel myself in and complete the main adventure of Princes of the West before going mad with new content and new gameplay. But that’s the joy of being my own publisher: no killjoy editors between me and my readership.

Perhaps this will be a dead end. I don’t know – like the large airship layer I wanted to include in Highways & Holloways, but couldn’t fit within a sensibly-sized volume. Perhaps this will have to be a stretch goal in an eventual Kickstarter. One thing’s for sure – the fun I had creating a crew and boats and weather and cargo in my stalled Saga project is still sloshing around in my imagination, looking for an outlet… together with pieces of Sid Meier’s Pirates! Gold, Das Boot, Aces of the Deep and any number of nautical dreams…

Torpedoes? Very steampunk. A wide variety of fish to catch? Why not? Open-world means open-world. Nice peaceful fishing… not smuggling at all. Submersibles? Maybe secretly… Or not-so-secretly, as they’re just too fantastic and central to the genre. What else? Squids? Sharks? Whales?! Underwater wrecks??!?!

You see the problem.

4 Replies to “The Lure of the Sea”

  1. Hi Martin,
    Joshua Abramsky here. I backed the previous SH books and made a few comments. I just wanted to say that I am really excited for the new book and since you mentioned reaching out to the community for comments I would be more than happy to do this when the time comes. The very best wishes for SH and your other endeavours.

  2. Thanks Joshua – great to have your continued interest. I’ll certainly let you know when it’s time for some playtesting and reader input 🙂 In the meantime, fire me any ideas you like.

  3. I might have missed an update, but I just read about the “stalled” SAGA project.

    Are you back to trying to complete SH before before SAGA, Martin? Or are they running concurrently? Just wondering what the plan is. I’ve enjoyed SH, but SAGA looks intriguing as well.

    1. Hi Guy. Yes, ‘stalled’ was the best word I could choose for Saga. I have over 95,000 words in draft, but it was a project hand-in-hand with Spidermind, who chose not to pursue it in the end. I’ve retained ownership of the material, but haven’t quite decided what to do next. In the meantime, Steam Highwayman really needs another volume. So the 2 years I put into Saga is really a longer-term investment. Some of Saga is just wonderful – things I am really proud to have written – but it needs thinking through a bit more, and a lot of editing – which was where my publishers were going to be helping me 🙂

Comments are closed.