July saw a change of design focus for Citadel on the Wilderlands. Up to now, I have been mostly working on the Solonor Isle portion of the project—detailing the island, the village and citadel of Nemeton and the town of Bleakhaven.
In July, I switched my focus to the Monastery of Ineffable Evil. I needed a change. Stat blocks, dungeons and a little bit of treasure seemed to be the order of the day.
I have also been doing an extra 100 words a day on a Major Events list for Solonor Isle. A GM can use the list to generate interesting, notable background (or not-so-background) events so the island feels like a real place. Some of the events occur in the background, and some could lead to mini-adventures and the like. The plan is to detail 100 such events; I’ve completed 50.
I’ve enjoyed the change of pace, but I’ve also found it challenging. My nemesis in any project is the maps. I’m terrible at mapping and I avoid the process as much as possible. That’s a huge flaw in my design process and one that I’ll be correcting in August with daily mapping time. You can imagine my excitement!
In any event, the word count continues to climb. Scores on the doors:
- Solonor Island: 95,656
- Solonor Events: 3951
- Monastery of Ineffable Evil: 24,633
So, in total, I’m up to around 124,240 words.
That’s the power of 500 words a day! My original target was 126,000 words, so I’m ahead of schedule, and that’s great. I’ve been surprised by how many words Solonor Isle took up (but then I did expand the place somewhat from my earlier plan). The monastery is shaping up quite nicely. I have no idea of the final word count yet or whether I’ll be finished by the end of October.
The original plan was to also include a Caves of Chaos-style area. There is no way I’ll complete such a place by the end of October; I’ll be lucky to complete the monastery. This means I either bin the idea or extend the project. I’m undecided on the best course of action. I’d love to design the area, but that means I won’t be working on other projects. What do you think I should do? Let me know in the comments.
Citadel on the Wilderlands is my love letter to B2 Keep on the Borderlands and B5 Horror on the Hill. I'm writing 500 words every weekday for a year.