Friday, 24 June 2022

Scott Bakker's brother shares some insights from the D&D campaign that created the world of Earwa

Scott Bakker's brother Bryan has shared some insights into the 1980s Dungeons & Dragons campaign that resulted in the creation of the world of Earwa, the setting for Scott's Second Apocalypse series (subdivided into the Prince of Nothing trilogy and Aspect-Emperor quartet).

Artwork by the excellent Jason Deem (aka Spiral Horizon)

He includes some reminiscences about the games they played as kids, some maps and illustrations, and even a poem that arose from their gaming. It's interesting seeing standard D&D races like gnomes existing alongside well-known Second Apocalypse names like Scylvendi and Mekeritrig.

At the end, Bryan shares some thoughts on Scott's radio silence for the last couple of years and the prospect of future books in the series. Famously, Scott was debating on whether leaving The Unholy Consult as the last word on the series, as he'd originally planned, or proceeding with a concluding duology/trilogy. That debate still seems unresolved.
For those interested in the now, some have commented on the fact that Scott has been quiet online in recent years. Suffice it to say he has gone through a lot. His singular focus right now is raising his daughter and building his family's future.

As for the future of the series, I've heard him say two things, over the years, about how the Second Apocalypse should end:

One was that there would be a third trilogy outlining the blow by blow of 'you know who's' rise. I know outlines exist for such a story, but just outlines.

The other is that the story is finished. That 'The Unholy Consult', is a fitting way to end a sprawling epic about the death of meaning.

For my part, I can't help but to think that this massive story was where Scott's creative life began and, it would not surprise me if, after his real life trials are complete, he doesn't return to it, before the end.

Like a favourite old coat - warm and comfortable - and smelling of sulfur (:

Sometimes, life does come full circle.

4 comments:

Fernando G. Orza said...

Hi Adam!

At the end you give your opinion on the possibility that he does come back with more books. From what I understand you don't think he will, but the phrasing and context seem to imply the contrary...

Excuse me the pun, this looks like the death of meaning! It happens that me, being a long time lurker in Westeros forums I tend to look into the text maybe too much!!

Anyway, thanks for your work, specially the amazing History of Eärwa, which I think is your best work.

Andy said...

Asking as a fan, but what are R. Scott Bakker's unmentionable 'issues'? I think he's a genius and wish he'd write more. I don't really know (hence my question) but he seems like an anti-GRRM or Rothfuss, someone who sucked it up and finished his main story regardless of the dark places it took him to. Really admire him if this is true.

Stonewielder said...

I still have my signed copy of The Darkness That Comes Before he sent me for being one of the winners of a contest he ran on wotmania.com shortly after the book was first published. Those were the days...

Adam Whitehead said...

I was quoting his brother's comments there.