Monday, April 2, 2007

Golden Age Review and Upcoming Convention

I just received word that the Golden Age SF: Tales of a Bygone Future anthology which I appeared in last year, has been reviewed on (Read the Review). My story, "On the Off-Ramp of the Intergalactic Superhighway," was favorably compared to a classic SF story as well as Mike Resnick's own story in the anthology. I am quite pleased.

I actually just finished a story for Eric Reynold's next anthology, Visual Journeys, due out this Summer. It is called "Resurrection Man," and is based on a painting by Frank Wu of the same name. This anthology is all about crafting stories around some great SF art (again in the tradition of the Golden Age magazines). I am really excited about this anthology and am very happy with the way my story turned out.

In other news, I will be attending Norwescon this coming weekend (April 6-8). In addition to attending panels on writing and gaming, I plan to read from Resurrection Man while there, and am involved in their annual Writer's Workshop, critiquing stories from aspiring writers. If you're in the Seattle area, this is a must-attend convention, one of the biggest in the Northwest each year.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Guild Wars New Year Festival

Hey, just a short update today about something cool that happens this weekend. Guild Wars, the MMO I work on at ArenaNet, is having a New Year's Festival this weekend in its asian-themed campaign, Factions.

The Canthan New Year coincides with the Chinese New Year and is celebrated with a huge festival and feast. As usual, with Guild Wars festivals, there will be goodies for players to get (lots of fireworks) as well as hats to earn during the festival's finale on Sunday.

I got to write quite a bit of dialog for this event, including my first two quests. In addition, I wrote the text for our website that promotes the event, along with a set of festival-themed haiku.

It's been a lot of fun. One of the many things I think we do really well at ArenaNet is providing players with new content beyond what they got with the basic game. And this festival, I think, will blow the players away.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Lasgun Wedding Sample Chapter

Hey, I just found out that Black Library has a sample chapter up on their site for Lasgun Wedding. Check out the Lasgun Wedding page and then click on the link to go read the sample chapter.

I'm Back

So, after a protracted battle with the transition from old blogger to new blogger, I have finally gained access to my blog again.

Just a few updates right now, but I hope to post more regularly in the future.

First of all, I am working on a new short story for my friend Eric Reynolds. My story, "On the Off-Ramp of the Intergalactic Super-Highway" appeared in Eric's anthology Golden Age SF: Tales of a Bygone Future. This was a collection of pulpy short stories written as if the authors still lived in the golden age of SF (the 1930s through 1950s).

Eric is working on a new anthology, and this time he's getting the rights from some great artists to illustrate each story. Again, the idea is pulpy science fiction in the manner of the grand masters. Each author gets a painting and writes a story around it. I chose Resurrection Man from an up-and-coming artist named Frank Wu, whom I met a while back at some East Coast convention or another. This is a cool piece of art that immediately sparked an idea in my head.

I don't want to say anything more about it right now, but it will have zombies.

If you want to see Frank's image, take a look at his website:

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Blustery Day

Well, it's quite the blustery day here in the Pacific Northwest. Lots of rain (more than usual, really. It's not normally THIS wet), and the winds are whipping, making a huge mess of everything.

The fun part is that this is the night of the Arena.Net holiday party, so we'll be braving the flooded roads and dodging downed trees just to go have some fun at an uber arcade called Illusionz. But that's what Seattle-ites do, deal with rain and play lots and lots of games - mostly video games.

But enough about the weather, the main point of interest for me today is a couple of pieces of anthology news.

First, the Golden Age SF: Tales of a Bygone Future anthology that I have a story in, just got reviewed by Locus Magazine (The magazine of the Fantasy and Science Fiction Field). The review was quite positive, using words like "an agreeable anthology." The reviewer had wonderful things to say about many of the pieces in the anthology. I assume he would have said nice things about my story, "On the Off-Ramp of the Inter-Galactic Super Highway," but perhaps he just ran out of room.

But I love this anthology and am really proud to be included in it. There is a foreword by Arthur C. Clarke, for goodness sake. Who wouldn't want to be in this anthology. If you are interested in finding out more about this anthology, go look at the book's website at
The second piece of great news is that Eric Reynolds, the editor of the Bygone Futures anthology, has asked me to write a story for his next anthology, which will feature artwork from some of the best SF artists in the field accompanying each story. In fact, the authors are being asked to write stories based on images from these artists. It's so completely retro, and I can't wait to start writing.

I'll keep you all informed about how the story progresses, as well as keeping you all (Hi, mom) up to date with my novel career and whatever happenings I can divulge about my work at ArenaNet.

until later, stay dry.

Saturday, December 9, 2006

First Post

Look, it's my first First Post ever. Don't you just hate those people? They never say anything but "I'm first!" Well, I am most definitely not first. In fact, if I had waited any longer to start a blog, I think I would have been the last person on the planet to have one.

Anyway, I have set up this blog as a way to more easily talk about what's going on in the life of Will McDermott, writer and all around good guy (really, just ask anyone; I really am a writer).

If you don't believe me, just check out my web page at

So, here's what you can expect from this blog. I will talk about myself and my projects and my work, and a little about my play (not the one I'm writing, but what I'm currently doing during my free time.

So, to get everyone up to speed, here is who and what I am at this moment in time:

Will McDermott is a fantasy and science fiction writer currently specializing in game-related shared world fiction. I have written two Magic: The Gathering novels and three Necromunda novels (Necromunda is an offshoot of Warhammer 40K). I've also written about a dozen short stories (most of them published) and some nonfiction game material (Magic and Pokemon guides and one hardcover Dungeons&Dragons game supplement).

What I'm currently working on:

My current day job is as a writer for ArenaNet, the makers of the online role-playing game Guild Wars. I write and edit dialogue for the characters in the game. We just shipped the third campaign in the series. It's called Nightfall, and I touched at least half of all the text in the game during the development cycle. It's a great gig, and I hope that having a real paycheck again (after five years of freelancing) will allow me the psace I need to write novels in my own worlds instead of always playing in other people's sandboxes.

I just finished proofing the galleys for my latest Necromunda novel (Kal Jerico:Lasgun Wedding). This is a fun story of how the intrepid bounty hunter, Kal Jerico tries to weasel his way out of a forced marriage while tracking down the assassin who killed his father. Lasgun Wedding will be on bookshelves next April.

What I'm currently playing:

I have turned into a MMORPG addict over the last two years. I play a number of characters in World of Warcraft (look for Baraqorn, Yolanda, or Trogana as those are the toons I play most often). I've also gotten into Guild Wars since starting to work for the company and really love it's combat system, lush visuals, and great storylines. I have borrowed names from my Kal Jerico books for my two main toons in Guild Wars. So look for Yolanda Catallus and Kal Jerrico in those games.

I love to chat with people online, so feel free to whisper me if you see me online.