Workshop Episode 34 (Guest Host: Maurice Broaddus)

The Roundtable Podcast, Workshop Episode 34, with Maurice Broaddus and Zach RicksMaurice Broaddus – author of the “Knights of Breton Court” series, editor of the “Dark Faith” anthologies (with Jerry Gordon), crafter of worlds and tales of wonder – returns to the Big Chair at the Roundtable to help me and co-host Ryan Stevenson workshop an alt history fantasy by podcaster and Guest Writer Zach Ricks. Zach’s tale – described as “James Bond in Harry Potter’s world during the time of Downton Abby” – launches us into a frothing brainstorming session, dealing with alternate global politics, romantic triangles, nefarious plots, and a huge dragon slumbering under Yellowstone Park. Literary gold abounds! (and there’s even more to be found in Maurice’s Showcase Episode!)

PROMO: Harlan’s Wake by John Mierau on the Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine

Workshop Episode 34 (Guest Host: Maurice Broaddus)

[caution: mature language – listener discretion is advised]

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Maurice’s fabulousity…

Upcoming Conventions for Maurice…

  • Killer Con (Las Vegas, NV) September 19 – 22, 2013
  • Context 25 (Columbus, OH) September 28 – 30, 2013

Zach Ricks in the World!

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Comments (3)

Wow ,there are so many things I could talk about. Dave you were wrong in so many ways in this episode, but I am going to focus on the author’s ideas.

There is one thing that Zach did that I strongly disagree with. In our world Annie Oakley never had children. Never.

Now I’m guessing Zach’s defense will be “it’s an alternate universe”, personally I think that is a cop out. If you are going to bring up a historical character like Annie Oakley, then you need to have her be authentic to the original.

If she never had kids then who is Phoebe? According to Wikipedia, over the course of her life (in our world) Annie Oakley “taught upwards of 15,000 women how to use a gun.” So the idea that she would have a female protégé is not unlikely. Also while she had no children of her own, she had 8 siblings, so Phoebe could easily be a niece or grand-niece.

The speech you wanted to have Annie give Phoebe about “taking time to raise a family” is totally unlike the Annie Oakley of our world. Why not stick with the real Annie Oakley?

Hi Zach,

This is a fascinating premise for a story. I’m eager to see the finished product.

I had a bit of a problem with Branson’s motivation for sabotaging the negotiations. Keeping the native American culture pure and unspoiled is extremely paternalistic, in my opinion, nor is it believable from an upper-class English aristocrat.

You said there was someone in the background, “stroking his cat,” a la James Bond. What is his motivation? Does he want the resources in the American west? Does he want to harness the dragon?

That’s a minor point. This is going to be a big, sweeping story. Keep up the good work.


First of all, I absolutely love this story idea. I’m a fan of all three things in the pitch.

I think it was Dave who suggested going into more depth with the United Indian Nations which would really be a good idea. The way you described them was as a fairly homogenous group. This doesn’t seem plausible to me. Some of these tribes were staunch enemies, so I would think there would be numerous factions. The dominant faction might want industrialization to occur but perhaps there is a strong secondary faction that is in cahoots with Branson and has something he wants, which would give him a motivation in preventing the trade agreement.

Also, Dave. I strongly disagree with you on the topic of the dragon. There is a reason why nuclear bombs aren’t used willy-nilly, they are scary. My impression is that any creature that decides to take a nap in the caldera of the Yellowstone Supervolcano is by no means ordinary or even extra-ordinary, it is extra-extra-extra-ordinary. It is a capital D, Dragon. On a side note, maybe the Native Americans have myths about this Dragon. Perhaps they think it will wake at the end of days and rain fire down upon world. Maybe they are correct in that belief. Personally, that sounds like an option of last resort

Anyways, great job with what you have and I’m really looking forward to reading this one day.

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