Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


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Cold, idle and with a new skill

A very cold day after many weeks of early-Autumn-like warmth, a day spent – once the idea of going for a walk in the fields was cancelled with a deep shiver – mostly in bed, reading, and recharging my batteries.

But I have received news about a story of mine, that passed the first round of selection and now will go through a final pass – and we’ll learn if I have a sale or a story looking for a new home.
Fingers crossed, but not enough to stop me typing.

And in other news, I have started yet another career, adding a new unlikely skill to my already overloaded resume: I am now offering my services as a translator and subtitle-monger (I don’t know what’s the proper name of the job) for online videos.
You got a video, on Youtube or elsewhere, you’d like to have subtitled in Italian?
Or, indeed, in English?
Look no further, and as Blondie used to sing, call me.
I’m good, fast, and most of all, I’m cheap.

And now, I’ll go and fix myself a hot Indian dinner.
Later!


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Welcome to Funeral Point

mana bros base squareI am happy to announce that the first… hmm, the first thing branded with the Mana Bros logo is about to hit the shelves.
As I mentioned a few days back, I’m working on a number of project, one of which is the translation of Il Sonno della Ragione, the indie horror/adventure game by my friend Alex Girola. The setting is very fun, and it’s the sort of gaming universe that gives you ideas.

Last night I went through a bout of insomnia – as it sometimes happens to me – and I started writing to pass the time. The end result is Welcome to the Neighborhood, a short story set in the universe of the game, and the first episode in a series that will go under the name of Funeral Point. Continue reading


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The Wonderman

But at the same time I am writing a story featuring the Count of St. Germain. The guy that Voltaire nicknamed The Wonderman.
The story is fully outlined but – for some strange reason – every time I sit down to start writing it, I get interrupted, usually by some nuisance that not only interferes with my writing work, but actually leaves me irritated and annoyed.
Go figure.

CITTADINI-DELLE-TENEBRE-di-Peter-Kolosimo-Oscar-Mondadori-1978-179-pagine-311575338279-500x710Now, I jumped at the idea of writing a story about St. Germain because he is one of the first mysterious characters I met as a kid, when I was reading books about mysteries and weirdness. I actually found him in a book I already mentioned in the past, Peter Kolosimo’s Cittadini delle Tenebre, sort of a young man’s primer on the occult, and a really fun book. Continue reading


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Two good ideas at the same time

Don’t you hate it when it happens?
Here I am, with tons of stuff to do, and two huge ideas that push on my brain to get to my fingers and through my fingers and the keyboard on a page and then get printed, and published, and read.

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Two ideas.
Two whole worlds.
Two potential new series.
Heroes, or at least a decent substitute for heroes, already there, ready to have a go at whatever I will throw at them.
So now what? Continue reading


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The Necronomicon stays in the picture or, new project for 2017

And so I missed the deadline.
Happy?
Well, I am actually. Sort of.

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Now, the bad thing is, I spent two days writing and that work won’t be paid. And given the current situation, with my bank account echoing hollowly, that is bad.
But the good thing is, the work done did not dissolve at the strike of midnight – it’s still there, it’s still pretty good (if I do say so myself), and now I am free.
Free in terms of wordcount, free in terms of themes and tones, free to use my characters as I see fit.
And yes, I told you so, I’m thinking about a series. I always think in terms of series.

So here’s how I spent the morning of the first day of 2017… Continue reading


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Hope & Glory

And so the long wait is finally over.
Or something.
I am proud to announce that Hope & Glory my original steampulp setting for the Savage Worlds roleplaying game is out of development, and a few titles will soon be in production and available for purchase.

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Illustration by Alberto Bontempi

In the meantime, you can check here for news, behind the scenes and product announcements. Social media, Facebook pages and all the usual bells and whistles will come in due time.


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A darker and stranger place

Some people I love live in Bruxelles.
As some live in Paris, in Ankara, in New York.
In London, in Rome.
I have friends and loved ones in a number of places, all over the globe – I am lucky like that. And as the situation grows more confused, I sometimes wonder if I am doing anything to help. Then, about fifteen minutes ago, I read this…

    Year by year, the world is turning into a darker and stranger place than any of us could want.
Somewhere, there is always a war.
Somewhere, there is always the threat of an act of terrorism.
Somewhere, there is always a woman or a child in peril.
Nature itself delivers devastating tsunamis, hurricanes and earthquakes.
In the light of this onslaught of shadows, is it naïve to try to shine a little light into the darkness? After all, these stories are only small flashlights of prose and who knows how long their batteries will last?
I don’t know. But naïve or not, I will continue to do so for as long as I can find the stories, or for as long as they find me.
I’m a writer. And this is what I do. This is the only thing I do that has potential to shine a little further than my immediate surroundings.
So these stories are important — to me, at least. Each one is a little candle held up to the dark of night, trying to illuminate the hope for a better world where we all respect and care for each other.
(Charles De Lint, introduction to Triskell Tales 2)

Sounds like a plan to me.
Keep writing.