Map of Koskant, Progress, and Title Ideas

I spent a bit of time yesterday and this morning fixing up this map that I created a few years ago, back when the background to the Gryphon Clerks was going to be a game setting. (I built in so many story hooks that I finally couldn't resist telling the actual story. Besides, writing a game is hard, takes a lot of testing that I don't have time for, and brings you a lot less reward per hour spent unless it's really popular.)

Map of Koskant

In case you're wondering, I used AutoRealm to make it. I'd forgotten how annoying AutoRealm can be (those jungle bits have hundreds of trees in them, and it slowly redraws them every time you move the viewport - which may be partly my using AutoRealm wrong, of course). You have to switch off all the toolbars - one at a time - to make the jpg export capture what you want it to capture. And it hasn't been updated since 2006, and doesn't work on my Mac (I had to dig out the old Windows machine, which makes it even slower). But it does make good-looking maps, eventually.

I moved the railways and the River Koslin (which used to let out much further north), added the Tussocklands and the Gulf islands, labelled the provinces and added and named their capitals, added the trail from Snakebridge to Gulfport and named Snakebridge and the Dragonpeaks, but otherwise this is pretty much how the map has looked all along. (The little coppery moons, if you're wondering, indicate that the feared Copper Elves infest the forests and jungles.)

I'm about to send the characters to the Beasthead Country for what may turn out to be Book 2.

Progress and titles

I'm at 46,000 words in the current draft, and by the time I fill in some odds and ends I should be comfortably over 50,000. My thinking at the moment is that that will be Book 1 of a trilogy (yes, I know), and Act I in the continuing stooory of the Gryphon Clerks.

I have a nice ending in mind, but haven't decided on a title. My candidates at the moment are "Stories" and "Introductions". So the whole trilogy is The Gryphon Clerks, and the first book is The Gryphon Clerks: Stories (or Introductions). Has kind of a Fables title feel to it, and I love Fables (the Bill Willingham graphic novel series, that is, though I also love fables-the-phenomenon).

So the trilogy could be titled Introductions, Challenges and Resolutions, which is kind of hanging a lampshade on the three-act structure, or I could start with Stories (or maybe Origins?). Still mulling that one over. If you have an opinion, leave me a comment!

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Mike Reeves-McMillan lives in Auckland, New Zealand, the setting of his Auckland Allies contemporary urban fantasy series; and also in his head, where the weather is more reliable, and there are a lot more wizards. He also writes the Gryphon Clerks series (steampunk/magepunk), the Hand of the Trickster series (sword-and-sorcery heist capers), and short stories which have appeared in venues such as Compelling Science Fiction and Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores.

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