Black Library powerhouse Gav Thorpe pulls back the curtain on the creation of Age of Sigmar and what it is like to author a GW novel.
Gav Thorpe is no stranger to the worlds of Games Workshop, being a long time member of the Design Studio before hanging up his designer gloves for a career shift into full time writer. He has given fans many many amazing stores from the Grimdark to Warhammer Fantasy and just now – Age of Sigmar.
Gav recently wrote up a fantastic behind the scenes piece on the creation of the Age of Sigmar and what it is like to work on a Black Library novel from start to finish.
If you love the “insider, behind the curtain” view of what it’s really like to be a creator in the Games Workshop universe, you REALLY should give it a read here:
Here are some small excerpts to give you a taste of some of the gems revealed:
My first inkling about the Age of Sigmar came when we were all working on the novel line for The End Times (for which I wrote Curse of Khaine). We knew the Warhammer world was ending, and that Chaos would triumph. But we had no idea of what was going to replace it. Other than the rumours everyone saw, I was in the dark as much as everyone else – until I was brought in by the Black Library and Games Workshop management team for the big reveal.
…Fun fact – the Age of Sigmar project was called ‘Stanley’ throughout its creation. Other Fun Fact – back in the day when we worked on Warhammer 7th Edition, it had the codename ‘Cucumber’. For no reason at all.
The first thing I had to do was forget everything I knew about Warhammer. Well, almost everything. The brief I received for ‘Realmgate Novel 6’ was, compared to many that other authors were receiving at the time, pretty broad.
“The story should be set during the Realmgate Wars. The meta-narrative is that Sigmar and his Stormcast Eternals are preparing their forces for an assault on the Allgate held by Archaon, and while this battle should not be described in this story, the events in it should allude to the fact that preparation for the battle is happening now (seizing objectives, creating strongpoints, defending strategic assets etc).
As well as the Stormcast Eternals, we would also like you to include Clan Pestilens as the main antagonist for the heroes.
The Stormcast Eternals should be your main point of view characters, but if you want to include some Clan Pestilens or other enemies/allies as point of view characters then that’s fine but will be subject to approval at synopsis stage.
One of the story’s themes should be corruption/plague.”
I had three objectives in mind while writing Warbeast (aside from Tell a Cracking Story, which should be a given on every project). Firstly, I wanted to ensure that I didn’t approach the Stormcast Eternals in the same way as I do Space Marines.
Go read the whole thing, as Gav gives an insightful view to the start to finish creative process involved in authoring a GW novel. it is fascinating stuff and gives you a sense of the level of creativity and dedication required by each and every author.
Finally, go pick up a copy of Gav’s latest:
ebook $15.99 hardback $24.00
The once noble tribes of Ursungorod in Ghur have almost entirely fallen to Chaos, and an infestation of Clans Pestilens skaven has amassed in the caverns beneath the snowy tundra. There, Poxmaster Felk is on the brink of opening a vital realmgate – but Sigmar intends to seize this portal for himself. Arkas Warbeast, Lord-Celestant of the Celestial Vindicators, was once a mortal ruler of these lands. Now, with the aid of the Knights Excelsior, he has returned to free his kingdom from the clutches of Chaos and claim the realmgate in his God-King’s name. But first he must vanquish the ghosts of his past and overcome his own conflicted nature, in order to unleash the beast within.
Written by Gav Thorpe
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