2016 book release, Point of Fate update

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Posted by David on June 9, 2016


New Book: Making Fun: Stories of Game Development, Vol. 1

I released my first book, SAAL 1, in 2013, and have released at least one book per year since. I take a stupid amount of pride in keeping that streak alive. I mentioned in my previous blog that neither POINT OF FATE nor BREAK OUT would make their projected 2016 releases due to various reasons. To fill the gap, I'll be publishing MAKING FUN: STORIES OF GAME DEVELOPMENT, VOL. 1 later this summer.

MAKING FUN is not a new book, per se. It collects serialized game-dev stories I published on Episodic Content over this year and last, as well as magazine articles I've revised and expanded to include more information and details. I put the finishing touches on it earlier this week and will aim to publish it in July or August.

To give you an idea of what games MAKING FUN covers, here's a look at how the Table of Contents is shaping up:

  • And Then There Were Two: The Making of Rebel Galaxy
  • Everybody Shake! The Making of Spaceteam
  • Anything But Sports: The Making of FTL
  • Angels, Devils, and Boomsticks: The Making of Demons with Shotguns
  • Once Upon a Point and Click: The Tale of King's Quest, Gabriel Knight, and the Queens of Adventure Gaming
  • Kings of the Jungle: The Making of Donkey Kong Country
  • Welcome to the Madhouse: Building the Padded Walls of Batman: Arkham Asylum
  • Horror House: Making and REmaking Resident Evil
  • Doom Clones: Mazes, Demons, and the Dawn of First-Person Shooters
  • Hyrule Fantasy: The Power, Wisdom, and Courage of The Legend of Zelda


Not a bad lineup, if I do say so myself. Most sections include bonus material such as postmortem interviews, and as mentioned, content published in magazines has been heavily expanded using primary and secondary sources.

MAKING FUN will be released in paperback and eBook formats this summer. I'll post further updates later.



The first draft of POINT OF FATE has been finished. Well, it's more like the third draft. Third and a half. Wha?

Writing POINT has been a long, weird journey. I'd like to tell you a bit about it so you understand why the book has been delayed, and why I'm positive that delay will make it even better.

I wrote the real first draft of POINT in early 2006, just a few months after finishing the first draft of HERITAGE. POINT was rough, as HERITAGE was rough. I never bothered to go back and spruce it up because I figured there was no point in getting book 2 of a series shipshape until I'd sold book 1.

So I invested my editing energy into HERITAGE, going back to it every 12-18 months and pouring in new writing skills I'd learned since my previous editing pass. The book grew stronger. POINT OF FATE, meanwhile, sat and moldered.

As I revised HERITAGE in 2013, I knew that the changes made were so extensive that revising POINT would be POINTless (pardon the pun). I would need to rewrite the book from the ground up.

Remember the part where I said I'd revised HERITAGE every year to year and a half? That takes a lot of time and energy. So much time and energy that by the time I sold HERITAGE to Tyche in 2013 and saw it published in 2014, I needed a break from Aidan and his world. A long break. Too long.

I didn't start rewriting POINT until last June. June 1st, to be exact. The manuscript was due in October. I thought I could swing it. I had an outline ready to go and was brimming with ideas. That was a good sign: I felt excited about Aidan and his pals again, a good indication that it was time to return to Crotaria and help the newly crowned Crown of the North save the world again.

The trouble was I picked up a second deadline: BREAK OUT, my hardcover about the making of seminal Apple II games. I have no regrets about doubling up on my book-writing workload. I got a nice advance for BREAK OUT, and I needed the money.

But writing two books at once meant I was writing each one at half speed. On top of that, POINT OF FATE is a lot more complex than HERITAGE. The first book centered on Aidan. POINT follows five characters: Aidan, Nichel, Edmund, Daniel, and Christine, not to mention approximately half a dozen new characters attached to the ones you already know.

I've said it before, but I want to say it again: I do apologize for the wait. It was never my intention to drag my feet. I've written between 5,000 and 10,000 words in POINT every single week since starting last summer. That means a lot of editing over the next couple of months, and a release still a year or so off.

I'll see if I can talk Margaret Curelas into releasing some materials in the interim. Cover art, synopsis, maybe a chapter or three. Indulge me a little longer; I promise the book will be worth it.


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