“Hello my name is Keir, this is my gazetteer.” Posted for the third time, and ideally for good: quickie mockups of my fantasy atlas cover and inner pages. This book will collect many of the fantasy maps I created and refined during the past 3-ish years, based on designs I started about 30 years ago as a teenager.

I’ve deleted previous updates about this thing because of inevitable project creep—first it was a D&D campaign sourcebook, then a maps-only atlas, and now a maps-plus-vignettes gazetteer—because passion projects are like that. Hopefully third time’s the charm and this one will stay posted for a bit.

So consider this as formal of an announcement as can be for an open-ended hobby-thing with a nebulous deadline: this first (?) volume of my fantasy gazetteer will see release in…let’s say Fall 2022? Perhaps self-published in a print-on-demand way? Maybe.

But I will put it out at some point, because what better way to mentally combat not only the real world’s myriad large-scale insanities, but also my own personal real-world freelance design feast-or-famine follies and stumblebum job hunt, than by dreaming up amazing places and inviting people to come play in them?

Update 8/28/22: Style guides are in, but folios are not, and doing layout for chapters out of order—especially when the maps are done but before final copy-editing is done—makes it feel less like work. Which is good, because it’s not *paying* work, but perhaps it’ll pay off in unexpected ways. Passion projects can do that.

Still looking at some sort of release later this fall, certainly PDF but maybe some kind of physical thing too. It’ll be a reference book, and not a sourcebook, so the content is mostly maps—with maybe a few if any illustrations, AI or otherwise—and plenty of lore. If that’s your thing. It’s definitely my thing. More to come, and not just as mockups, so stay tuned.

Update 9/3/22: Another fantasy gazetteer mini-update: folio and section title mockups that integrate visual elements from the cover. Your hero can get just as fancy as any corporate-game sourcebook. Still doing layout, still hoping to release a PDF sometime this fall. Stay tuned.

Update 9/26/22:

As I wind up production and layout of my first fantasy atlas & gazetteer, I gotta shout out Wikimedia Commons. Forget all those other vector sites, even the free ones. Nobody beats the Commons for great, accessible, creative-commons-licensed artwork to edit and combine and warp and play with when creating original heraldic devices.

Not only that, they’re great building blocks for other iconography, like personal charges for my book’s two main voices (a bard diplomat and cleric cartographer), or ancient symbols of elemental, spiritual, and celestial power scattered across the planet (to complement my mappamundi-style cover/title page map).

Another round of copy-editing and an author’s note to go before release. Expect it in digital form soon. Like mid to late October.

Update 10/2/22:

Maybe this was predictable, but after working with Midjourney’s AI art generator for a bit it was easy to change my tune about using it in my fantasy atlas—with the explicit caveat that when I use it, it’s merely Square One, not only for landscape vistas—helpful imagery when describing places—but also for portraits. Each of the subsequent slides in this post went through significant and in some cases substantial Photoshoppery to make them exactly what I wanted, or as close as possible.

That matters because it’s enough to make them “original”, especially the portraits of my two alter-ego authors (much more so than the awkward-jalopy character art I’d made a few years back). Even so, AI art won’t feature much in the final product—because it’s a gazetteer! It’s supposed to be full of maps! And it is—there are 70 maps total at this point. I know I say “coming soon” a lot, but it’s still true. Looking into print-on-demand via DriveThroughRPG as well. Stay tuned.