Saturday, July 19, 2014

A Good and Ugly Kickstarter - The Storyteller's Thesaurus

The Storyteller's Thesaurus is both "good" and "ugly". First, I'll cover the ugly. Chenault & Gray is the parent company of Troll Lord Games, the publisher of Castles & Crusades. If C&C has gotten a knock over the years, it's due to typos and other mistakes in the printed copies.

Now, The Storyteller's Thesaurus isn't even released yet, so why am I mentioning typos? Simply because they couldn't spell their own company's name correctly on the Kickstarter page. Not the most auspicious sign.

At least the graphic for the book itself is correct, right?

There an apostrophe missing in the title above.

Enough of the bad, lets look at the good. This has the potential to be an excellent resource:
This is a reference book with over 100,000 interrelated words! It is specifically designed for writers, teachers, game designers, students and anyone who enjoys the creative output of fantasy, science fiction or horror tales! 
Words have their own entries, there is no need to hunt through pages of alphabetical listings! Words that are crucial in fantasy, history, and horror. No other thesaurus is like this: the Storyteller's Thesaurus names weapons, armor, magical items, mystical creatures, symbols, treasures, and descriptive terms essential for any genre. There are usage notes and writing tips to clarify and expand. The authors draw from decades of work to target areas of concern for beginning writers as well as experienced authors. 
The Storyteller's Thesaurus actualizes character design. The Storyteller's Thesaurus helps you contrive enduring settings and unleash the full power of any scene, great or small.Let this book inspire new characters and develop original settings and locales. You’ll be amazed at how quickly new ideas form as you browse. The Storyteller’s Thesaurus just might be the cure for writer’s block, dull prose, and stale ideas ~ pick up this book and let your world expand!
Over 500 pages.

Authors are James Ward and Anne K. Brown

I may kick in for the digital copy at 10 bucks. At least that way, if it suffers some annoying typos, there is always the hope that the file can get updated


  1. The digital copy has been available for a while (via the TLG store and DTRPG), but there's been no print version although people have been asking for it. That's what this KS is intended to take care of.

  2. Isn't this just a thesaurus? I mean, I use the thesaurus online for my RPG needs and it works just fine. Also, stuff is usually spelled crekly

    1. It's more than just a thesaurus. It is specifically tailored for RPG use.
      I haven't purchased it yet but according to the reviews I've read it has sections for things like treasures, wizard's things, missile weapons, armour, symbols, etc. sections and descriptions that wouldn't be part of a normal thesaurus. Plus it's 500+ pages.

  3. Augh, I think that was my bad, typing the name wrong. I have only known him most of my life, but mostly I call Steve Chenault "stickboy". And you are right, there should be an apostrophe on the cover, that at least I think we can change. The name on the Kickstarter, however, can not be changed after it has launched.

  4. Them good old boys from Arkansas never meant nobody no harm nohow!

    Seriously, though, yes, the Trolls usually end up with more than their fair share of errors, oops, and faux pas. Or should I say, fowl pas?

    I remember the first time I met the guys at their first Gen Con. The first product I picked up, a module it was, and the very first bit of text (boxed text), featured the bad guys, humanoids they were, sitting at a tavern bar sulking about how they'd had setbacks from human adventurers.

    One slapped his coarse, rugose hand on the table and exclaimed, "Damn those fowl humans!"

    Intrigued, I went to the guy sitting behind the table and asked, "So, you guys are making a module with duck-men? Cool!"

    His response was, with a smile, "Whaaaaaad th' hyeeel y'all talkin' 'bout, Smokey Joe?"

    And that was how I met Stephen Chenault, began a long, fruitful friendship, and learned how to understand Arkansan.

    Spelling may not be their forte; grammar to them merely a foreign word. But their intentions are always good, they are filled with the spirit of the OSR, and they put out awesome products.And you will find few publishers at their level who care so much about and work so directly with their customers.

    Of course, I may be biased; we are long-time friends, I've worked with them for years, worked on several of their products (one of which I was sadly credited as "Editior James Mishlar," an addition after I turned in the ms I must note), and published Castles & Crusades products under license.

    But I've never worried about their spelling or grammar. They get more than enough right, and often enough what they get wrong ends up being worth the amusement factor. And far more often than not, it is not the words in the book that matter, rather the intent.

    And them good old boys from Arkansas, they intend to have fun with games.

  5. If you need to hire a proofreader, i work for free products. :)

    But regarding Troll Lord Games, their core rules kickstarter has been great. They even mailed me the Player's Handbook early. It looks great. I'm sure mailing it separately from the rest of the rewards cut into the profits. The stretch goals were amazing.

  6. Oh, I'm thrilled with my 6th Printing PHB from the last Kickstarter. I'm all over this one, as well. Typos aside, this one looks great, too--I'm a sucker for inspiring and helpful lists for FRPGs.


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