Adventurers Fanmail for Nov 2005 through Jan 2006
published Friday 24 February 2006
From: Andy Hinojosa
Date: Thu 3 Nov 2005
Hey Thomas I was just thinking about the horror themed introduction
you did. You explained very well the story concerning the vampire city
and it's slaves. It would be interesting if Belphanior did venture there
to find Victoria and found out about the slaves and used one of his
newly aquired items the Fork of Doom to suddenly take over the human
populace and have them fight against there vampire slave masters.
It would be very chaotic considering the vampires couldn't just outright
kill all their food... We all know how much Belphanior hates slavery.
How much more would he hate this form of slavery? Thanks again for your
great work. Wish you could write faster. The best time I had was when
I started on episode one and realized I had so many more to read...
We'll see what happens. A storyline like the vampire city
could be a disaster if done wrong, so I have to be careful.
From: Tyler Sherkin
Date: Fri 4 Nov 2005
Subject: Fan Mail
Hey man, just wanted to drop you another "Great job!" e-mail.
I'm really finding this whole gateway storyline quite interesting.
Keep it up!
Glad you like it!
From: Wayne MacLaurin
Date: Sat 12 Nov 2005
Subject: Dumb TV - Incompetence
I was reading through a backlog of your rants and saw the Oct 28th
one about dumb TV and morons that succeed due to political correctness..
Do yourself a favor and pick up _Incompetence_ by Rob Grant. Its a
mystery/sci-fi novel that uses that exact premise as the plot driver...
its very very funny in that context.
P.S... the Adventurers continue to be a blast to read and the best part
of my Friday mornings...
I haven't had cable TV since 1996.
Date: Tue 15 Nov 2005
Subject: Hi, Mr 'Adventurers' !
I'm a long-time reader of the Adventurers, and still liking your work. You
know yours may very well be the longest one-man work published on the web ? Get
your place in the Guiness hall of records !
I hope we'll learn more about Mongo's new girdle. Reading your notes about
it, I would have thought Belphanior would be the first to reach "godlike" power
level, with all the items, connections and enemies he made over time. I hope
we'll see more of your 'epic' style (like your Oerth-2, or Xusia storyline
styles) with long story arcs, strong villains and dramatic events for the heroes !
I used your style for some thirty-some stories of my own - with no intent to
devote them anywhere as much time as you did, the first ones are quite old
already, but I'm thinking of bringing them to a good climax for conclusion.
They're set later in time in WoG, and with no reference to your characters.
If you read them & don't like them I have no objection to feedback !
They can be found here.
I'll put this link up in the fanmail so others can check it out.
From: Ben Sartori
Date: Fri 25 Nov 2005
Subject: RE: about The Adventurers
Even before I see 900, excellent year mate, well done. I'd say you've made
many people happy.
Cheers big ears.
I just hope all those people realize that I can't do it forever!
From: Tyler Sherkin
Date: Thu 24 Nov 2005
Love the stories as ever but I had some questions for you with regards
to writing, if you don't mind:
Good questions. Answers:
- Do you have any advice for someone looking to start up
a sort of serialized fiction similar to the Adventurers
(e.g. something that would be released regularly)?
- How do you keep track of all of the characters and treat them all
appropriately when they've grown beyond a traditionally sized group?
- Make sure you have the time to write/proof/release your work
on a regular schedule. You readers don't see an episode a week
because I have tons of free time --- you see an episode a week
because I drive myself to produce that much, no matter what the sacrifice.
- Actually, I have a lot of trouble tracking all of the characters ---
which is why I don't. Though I have a few readers who think that
every living character ever introduced must be involved in another
storyline at some point, that isn't the case.
From: Zachary Stewart
Date: Fri 25 Nov 2005
Subject: Thank you fan mail.
I have been reading your work since the mid 90s and have seen many
ups and downs. I would like to take this time to thank you for all
your effort and would like you to know that it is appreciated.
Enjoy your vacation, and I'm sure I am not alone in being eager to
see more of Peldor.
Hopefully the "downs" weren't in the quality of my writing!
Date: Wed 30 Nov 2005
Subject: Peldor question
Why did Peldor's feather tattoos disappear? I still remember
laughing my ass off when he acquired ALL of the feathers.
Got something planned?
Thanks again for the stories!
They disappeared because I didn't want the man to have all these
godlike powers for the rest of his life and the rest of my stories ---
it took away the challenge for the character.
Date: Wed 7 Dec 2005
The new official version is here.
He's referring to the White Plume Mountain revamping
for the 3rd edition rules.
From: Matt Paley
Date: Fri 16 Dec 2005
Subject: Random fam mail
Downloaded 'The Adventurers' to my PDA recently. Perfect reading for
train journeys. Keep up the good work - it is appreciated!
IMHO Number 1 character is Belpanior - the best story was Helgate.
The improvement in your writing style as the episodes progress is
impressive, to be honest the first 50 or so are pretty rough but by the
end you are doing a great job.
Anyway - never worry that that the hours of work are going to waste.
Glad you like it. Belphanior, as you should all know by now,
is my favorite character to write.
From: Trevor Bancroft
Date: Mon 26 Dec 2005
Subject: My best Christmas present this year!
This was my best Christmas present this year: "a Peldor adventure" !
A Peldor anything aside from him raising his family or playing host to
the other adventurers is music to my ears. Honestly, I'm a father
myself and do have the wish to settle down and do right by them. But I
also realize that there are situations that could bring me to actively
defend them. In Peldor's world there are many things that could bring
me to that and Peldor is far more able than I am.
You know what would be the best? If towards the end of the your saga
that Peldor held some kind of ace up his sleeve and played some vital
role in the saving of Oerth. Even if he came in like Batman with a
final peice of the puzzle. I'm sure you'll come up with something and
no matter what I love your writing.
The only downfall to my anxious anticipation of the finale to your saga
is that it means I wont be able to read any further adventurers. :(
P.S. - I am currently playing in a 3.5 campaign with some friends and
have been for a while. Guess who I'm playing as my character? Razor
Charlie! :D Its great fun. If you ever want details, let me know. I
love this game!
As I've said before, the problem with Peldor was that I married him off
too early. This is what happens when you start writing in 1991 with
no greater plan that to put a tiny bit of material online. Whatever I do
after the Adventurers will be scripted out from start to finish,
with much better pacing that the Adventurers had.
From: Keith Hudgins
Date: Wed 28 Dec 2005
Subject: Wish list kudos
Just dropping a line. Been reading your stories for years now, and I enjoy
every one of them.
Thanks for writing, and the struggle you've gone through to continue
delivering your stories to all of us.
The secret is proper time-budgeting.
From: Michael Feemster
Date: Sat 31 Dec 2005
Subject: Thanks for the Stories
Since you said that you plan on stopping at 1000
chapters I would like to thank you for providing great
entertainment over the last ten years. Many people
will follow you in writing fiction on the Internet for
private publication. I have seen other Dungeon and
Dragons and Harry Potter fan fiction take off with
this medium. As a teacher I try to tell young
students about this so that they can possibly write
stories to reach a wide audience.
No matter what happens in the future, you have set the
standard for this type of writing. I have seen
improvement in your style and your stories. You have
your readers anxiously waiting for Friday to see what
It has been a great privilege to know you through your
rants and the stories of The Adventurers. I wish you
the best in your future. You have one of the pioneers
in being able to reach a worldwide audience through
your storytelling and the Internet is better because
of it. On behalf of your many friends, thank you.
You're welcome, but remember, it's not over yet ---
episode 1000 will come at the end of 2007.
From: Uri Goldberg
Date: Sun 1 Jan 2006
Subject: Adventurers - a small correction
A small correction of an error I noticed in the updated Crimson Blades
info: Sydaar the thief was slain by Belphanior in 739, and hence she's
I'm anxious to read the continuation of the saga... Happy new year!
I will get this fixed.
Date: Fri 6 Jan 2006
Subject: Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas, Happy New Years, and thanks for all the good stories.
Date: Sun 15 Jan 2006
Subject: Re: chapter #902 of The Adventurers
> This could be Belphanior's greatest, most ambitious, and most
> ballsy endeavor yet. I suppose you readers will be the judge
> of that, though, when all is said and done.
I'm debating whether I should keep myself in suspense and read as you
release them, or whether I should just not read any until the entire
adventure is over, and read them in one go... =P
By the time I'm finally answering all this fanmail ---
February 2006 --- this arc is almost over, but hopefully it all worked out.
Date: Sun 15 Jan 2006
Subject: Wherefore Brutus?
I think somehow we missed an episode between 901 and 902 -
I'm sure others have sent word, but I missed the fight that knocked Brutus out.
Still enjoying all the stories, and enjoying the weekly commentary on life.
I too am still reading my comics - just turned 40 yesterday - and don't plan
on stopping, although they are getting quite expensive. I could buy a new
hardcover every week, or several paperbacks, with the money I spend on comics.
Keep up the great work!
Sometimes, it is implied that certain things take place "offscreen".
When a bully tries to make trouble in a tavern full of very powerful
adventurers, and that episode ends with them all chuckling, you should
know what's going to happen next.
From: Scott Kitchen
Date: Fri 20 Jan 2006
Subject: Looking forward to next week already...
I can already tell that next week's going to be a blast, both
literally and figuratively. This was a great set-up.
Glad you like it.
From: Thomas Taylor
Date: Sun 22 Jan 2006
Subject: Adventurers E-mail
Just wondering if you have ever used any supplements other than the modules
you have run the Adventurers through in the past? Some products published
somewhat recently (when 3.0 was released) are The Adventure Begins
(fleshes out a lot of Greyhawk) and the Living Greyhawk Gazeteer.
Have you ever used either of these or any of the "recent" (post 3.0)
release products are source material for the Adventurers?
I have not, because I haven't reached that point in my stories' timeline.
I have tons of Greyhawk Wars and post-Wars TSR/WotC accessories in a box,
to be used when my stories reach that point in fictional time. Of course,
if episode 1000 comes first, then we will not see the Greyhawk Wars in my writing.
From: H\'8cvard Lindheim
Date: Mon 23 Jan 2006
Subject: Re: Episode 903
Stunning. Absolutely stunning. I wasn't sure wether the target was the City
of Vampires or slavers - my bet was on the Vampires tough.
This is a brilliant set-up.
I think I haven't fully appreciated the strength of the slavers until now.
Yes, I understood they were powerful, just not HOW powerful. But the
enemies' power is truely revealed in what you write about the preparations.
Still, I wonder how large their armed forces are, the number and quality of
their magicians, etcetera. I'm certain to find out!
Thanks for the party at the Green Dragon Inn too. Nice to see the old gang.
Oh, and nice touch with the robed figures. There's so much to look forward
to here ...
From: Philip Quan
Date: Fri 27 Jan 2006
Subject: Fantastic episodes 903, 904 : Freedom of Slaves
I have greatly enjoyed reading episodes 903 and 904, especially concerning
the planning and execution of these tasks. I think that Belphanior might
have used the hourglass to freeze time and quickly kill the slaver leaders
in episode 904.
An idea suddenly occurred to me that perhaps you, the author himself, also
look down on slavery (as well as people's rights and freedom) and uses
Belphanior to express your discontent at people in power abusing their
power to the misery of untold innocents.
Last week, episode 903 intrigued me so much that I went back and reread
the stories up to episode 850 relating to when Belphanior was captured
by the slavers when the Gateway malfunctioned.
It is interesting to observe how the slavers chose to justify their
argument for slavery in episode 849. [The key sentences] really stood
out to me. When people are power hungry and greedy, they will be prepared
to make up any rule, any excuse to do whatever it is that they want.
I also realised that there is a minor loose thread with the wolfmen
(episode 837) and Belphanior probably will return to the forest with
his team (+protection to lycanthropy) to finish off the werewolves
once and for all.
Many thanks for a wonderful story and I look forward to reading more
of these exciting tales.
While slavery is inherently wrong, that's not why Belphanior's acting like this.
The truth was, this aspect of his character got defined early on by the player,
and now I'm just using it as a way to write a story arc about how to decimate a kingdom.
From: Simo Kostiainen
Date: Fri 27 Jan 2006
Subject: Chapter 904 of the adventurers
I've never emailed you telling how great work you are doing.
I'll just say that now; You are doing a great work with the Adventurers.
I've been reading the stories since -96 and the day when you decide to
stop writing them will be a sad day for me. I will probably understand
your reason for quitting, but I will also be upset anyway. The task of
writing The Adventurers must be a taxing indeed, and I am going to be
grateful of what you have done, but still upset... ;-) Any storyline
that still holds my interest after several rereads is a job very well
done. Thank you.
Just thought you ought to know.
Thanks for the praise. When it's all over, it will have been
a 16-year work that, if printed on double-sided 8.5x11 paper, would stack up
to about two feet of printed material. Think about that, all of you,
the next time you're in the bookstore.
From: Max Eric Jules Du Jardin
Date: Fri 3 Feb 2006
Subject: Your recent stories
I'm a long-time reader of the adventurers, and I just thought
I'd drop you a line concerning the last few stories. I realise you enjoy
writing about Belphanior the most, but I find myself wondering what is his
point for attacking the Sea Princes - yet again if I might add. He freed
slaves, got hunted by the hired assassins, killed the would-be assassins,
got magically transported without his equipment to the place for execution
(which, in my opinion, he should not have evaded), and now he is back for
more. Don't get me wrong - I like the guy. But as of right now, he's
really uni-dimensional. I enjoyed the stories about his rule of Helgate
much more. Now it's just slaughter, slaughter, get more magical items to
slaughter more people. And it's different from when the old gang
Now; Apart from the fact the Sea Princes are a
whole nation, and that as such, Belphanior will never win against them,
what exactly is he trying to achieve? And why haven't they really fought
back? I hate to say it, but for a prosperous nation with high slave
income, they've been doing little. I realise Belphanior is powerful, and
so are his friends, but you said yourself sometimes things go too far.
Exploration of the gates was fun, but this (again, in my humble opinion)
isn't; Belphanior himself said "I always figured I'd be the first one to
buy it" at Ged's funeral. And he has made so many enemies, or enemies by
proxy, it's impossible to count them. Hell, by slaying Orcus' high priest,
then killing his most powerful undead servant, and various others, I have
to wonder how he didn't either make it into demi-godhood, or why he isn't
a smoldering pile of ash by now.
I know you sometimes kill important
characters. I think Belphanior should have been long dead and buried - no
one can do all the high-profile killing he has done, and make so many
enemies, and make it out. Not on Oerth, where so many powerful individuals
are present with different affiliations. And not when the only thing
Belphanior does to others is... put them in danger. Anyone associated with
him is in peril. And he periodically needs his old "friends" to help
him... And he does nothing for them in return. When he got possessed by
the Balor's eye, who had to fight legions of demons and undeads to save
him? And what did he do in return for them?
I'm sorry this turned out
as a rant. Because I love your writing, but I feel you've been focusing on
Belphanior too much. I don't know if you have other plans in mind, but one
thing I would love to see written from you, would be a fresh start with
new adventurers. Maybe not on Greyhawk, maybe somewhere else.
You bring up a good point. My response is this: there are two kinds
of people...the kind who sit at home and have a family and no danger
and a safe life, and the kind who need something more. For every
99 accountants or librarians in the world, there will be one Navy SEAL
or secret agent. For every 99 adventurers who end up like Peldor,
there will be one like Belphanior. Without the Belphaniors of the world,
all story plotlines would be purely reactive, never proactive.
Powerful individuals have to do something, not just wait around
for things to happen. I agree that he hasn't really given back to
his friends, and that to follow him is to risk death every single day;
I will try to address this sometime.
From: Mark Spano
Date: Mon 6 Feb 2006
Subject: The adventurers
I have been reading your series for many years now and one of the things
I loved about the older episodes was that you would talk about current
events and the like. Reading episodes from 5 years ago, it was like
watching history happen. Could you do some of that again (especially
since my home town, Pittsburgh, just won the superbowl! *laughs*)?
[Ed. note: he says he knows about the "news" entries but does not read them]
Anyways, love the stories :-)
This is what the rants section of the website is for,
as I decided to split the non-writing stuff from the writing itself.
From: James Moran
Date: Mon 6 Feb 2006
Subject: Other story sites
I've been looking for other sites with long D&D stories and have been
having a hard time finding any. If you know of any that are not on
your links page could you send them to me. I've read The Adventurers
5 times and also am glade that you started writing again.
I've listed all that I know about, but that doesn't mean there aren't more.
These days, I recommend comics and books and movies to people, figuring that
if they like my work, they'll also like the other work/media that helps inspire me.
If any of you fans are reading this and can contribute the location of good D&D fiction,
please let me know.
From: Eric Barrett
Date: Fri 10 Feb 2006
Subject: Re: chapter #906 of The Adventurers
> notes: I hate that this battle is dragging out across more than a
> month of real/reader time, but there's no other option. I can't give
> you a 100K king-size story one week when all of that material takes
> me several weeks to write. Without pacing, I'd burn myself out as an
> author. Better to tell the story in weekly pieces and keep myself
> semi-sane, no?
I know you're something of a perfectionist, but don't trouble yourself
over this point. It's great reading!
Thanks as always for the great story.
Thanks! Glad you like it, no matter what the pace.
From: Stefan Stirzaker
Date: Mon 13 Feb 2006
Subject: Re: chapter #906 of The Adventurers
Much better to spread it out, I know the stories will end again eventually
but I really look forward to my weekly update!
Congrats on such a good story arc from story #1 to present.
Heh...you readers have it easy...some good comic book stories can take
many months to finish!
From: T. J. Crocker
Date: Fri 17 Feb 2006
Subject: kudos to you, sir
You probably don't remember me - my name is TJ Crocker, and I'm a long-time
fan of the Adventurers saga (you've got some of my old artwork in the
fan art section).
I just wanted to write in and give you some well-deserved kudos on your
continuing work. I understand the amount of time and effort that goes into
keeping the saga alive, and I want you to know that I appreciate it! I look
forward to a new episode every Friday, and I even read through the older
stories on occasion. Recently, I started the saga from the beginning, and
read it during my lunch break - I'm up to #323 at the moment.
I must say that I really like what you've done with all the characters
lately. The Belphanior episodes are still great (haven't read today's
episode yet, but will as soon as I get home from work), and they are overall
my favorite. The newer ones (with Mongo along for the ride) are especially
interesting. I can see where a lot of Belphanior's personality is taken
from a certain Rogue Warrior we all know. And I have to tell you that the
"new world" arc with Rillen, Songa, and the rest has me intrigued.
You mention in your footnotes that some people don't seem to understand the
human adventurers' needs to settle down (Peldor, especially), but I agree
with you that it is a very realistic course for them to take, given their
limited lifespans and all they've already accomplished. At the same time,
though, I often find myself wondering what Peldor et al are up to while the
rest are gallivanting around Oerth. Surely the life of Greyhawk's
Guildmaster of Thieves is not so boring that some interesting tales might
not come out of it now and again? Just a thought...
Question: I know you don't have that much time on your hands these days,
but have you given any thought to a serious update of the Rogues' Gallery?
It hasn't been updated beyond episode 600 or so, and could use a bit of
attention. Also: since you are trying to weed out any references to D&D in
the saga, do you intend to keep the Characters, Spells, and Monsters
sections formatted with D&D in mind (complete with ability scores, THAC0,
I guess that's enough of my rambling. I really enjoy your work - you've put
in a lot of time over the years, and the results are outstanding. Good job!
I remember everybody who contributes anything - praise, ideas, criticism,
and especially artwork! I'm glad you like them and are re-reading them
(which is something I need to do, if I ever find the time.) Not many
people seem to care for the "lost continent" arc, which may be because of
the characters involved; I hope to show them in a better light once the
exploration of their crash site begins. As for Peldor, his stories are
tough to write since there aren't many things that would tear a man away from
his family, and I've grown tired of writing City-of-Greyhawk-based stories.
I know that the Rogues' Gallery needs to be updated, I just haven't had
the time. I plan to keep the "Characters, Spells, and Monsters" sections
because the references are useful; I've had them around for 900+ episodes,
so keeping them in place for less than a hundred more (since I'll stop
writing this at #1000) won't hurt.