Age of Monsters

I admit it, I’m obsessed with Dungeons & Dragons, the period of time in which it was a new concept, and the state of Oregon; if you’re interested in all these things, I hope you’ll connect with my odd, quasi-YA novel here. I started this project in 2007; it’s a kind of alternate 1980s history of my geeky teenage years, but I myself am not in it. Those who grew up with me might recognize a few incidents remapped to fictional characters and alternate locations. Steve’s house and basement-apartment vaguely recall my friend Gene’s childhood home, which was also located in the West Hills but lacked the eastern view and other important details. The Game Den combines several stores I frequented as a kid, but especially the Book Den, a shop located in Gresham, not Portland. Merriwether Prep does not exist in any form; when I think of it, I picture the grounds of Lewis & Clark College, where I spent a week in high school along with other students from around the state at the Oregon Young Writers workshop.

The novel is complete, at 150K words and 43 chapters.

1. Tess

2. Thrust, Parry, Leg Squeeze, and Detente

3. The Campaign

4. Megaera

5. Court Intrigue, with Assassins

6. The Veteran Shows Her Skill

7. Vampires, and Worse

8. Boss Monsters Revealed, The Note on the Cast

9. Bugclaw

10. The Bandit, the Demonlord, the Walk in the Sun

11. Foreshadowing

12. Lydia

13. A Hairy Escape

14. A Shoulder to Cry On

15. The Game Den Irregulars

16. Negotiations in the Dark

17. The Crossroads

18. Class Dismissed, and Other Gifts

19. Encounter with the Resistance

20. The Dragon Prince

21. The Future Remapped

22. Lessons in the Field

23. Reunion at Camp

24. The One that Got Away

25. Misdemeanor by Moonlight

26. Megaera Brings Down the House

27. Xanthe

28. A Change of View

29. Back Together

30. In the Dungeons

31. The Heroes Regroup

32. Arslan Takes a Fall

33. Death

34. The Funeral

35. A Gift and Goodbye

36. Jane

37. Tess in the Underworld

[More will come as I edit them. There are 43 chapters.]

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4 Responses to Age of Monsters

  1. lkildahl says:

    Long ago was the Book Den in the land of Gresham. It was good times. I’m glad somebody else remembers as well.

  2. Ken Julkowski was the owner. It was great to see people’s various campaigns in progress, listen in, and pick up ideas. I remember a tournament held with an adventure called “Maze of the Moneylender.” The guy who wrote the module was a great DM named Steve.

    • lkildahl says:

      Steve Slayton was the DM for the Maze of the Money Lender.
      Last I’d heard Steve had moved to Alaska but that was quite a long time ago.
      Steve’s game world was premised off of Lloyd Alexander’s The Chronicles of Prydain but the Maze of the Money Lender was something of a one-off. Still, it was a scary adventure of vampires and traps.

      • Right, I remember listening in on his Prydain campaign. I put a bit of it in my gamer book. “The Game Den Irregulars” chapter is influenced by a conversation I had with Steve in the back of the Book Den. The Aaron character isn’t Steve physically; I had Robert E. Howard in mind. I’m going to revise this thing and either find a publisher or self-publish it.

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