Path of the Just – Izumicon Content

Hello there! If you’re seeing this, then we probably met at Izumicon 2017 and you picked up one of our fliers. Thanks for taking the time to stop by. So, first things first! Even though the first chapter of Absolution doesn’t go live until January 10th, you get to be some of the first to read the start of the new Path of the Just adventure. And if you keep coming back here, you’ll get to see the chapters a few days before they’re released.

Absolution – Chapter One

You can see as you look at the Path of the Just content around the site(of which there will be more coming in the next month or two), this is a story that’s been with me for a while. I’ve been nitpicking it to death for the last few years, to the point that I’d reached a lovely state of paralysis on trying to do anything with it. By posting the regular Absolution chapters here on the site and producing more content in general, I hope that’ll start moving the story forward.

So, what is Path of the Just? I think the elevator pitch I’ve settled on lately is “Guardians of the Galaxy meets Thundercats or Zootopia,” and it’s as good a quick explanation as any. It’s a love letter to things like 80s cartoons, Japanese RPGs, comic books and lighthearted adventure stories. I grew up loving things like Thundercats and the 80s X-Men comics, and it’s progressed to new shows like Avatar the Last Airbender, Legend of Korra and most recently, Trollhunters.

Why anthropomorphic characters? A couple of reasons. First, my major was biology with an emphasis on Animal Behavior, and I think that’s an interesting avenue to explore. They lend themselves to allegory really well too, going all the way back to Aesop through Zootopia recently. And I think they make for some fun designs for artists to play with.

Now, as for Absolution… I’ll admit, the tone of this story is a bit darker than some of the others. I don’t want to spoil what’s coming, but that first chapter probably shows that I’m putting Alexis and Dante through the ringer a bit. In writing the first draft, I was also forced to deal with some things I’ve been wrestling with over the past year or so, and part of the reason I’ve had a hard time writing it is that it hits a little close to home.

I actually wrote a version of this as a short story many years ago, and it proved to be pretty popular on a few different sites that I posted it to. However, I’ve grown a lot as a writer and the Path of the Just story has changed a lot, and I wanted to revisit it. In the original story, Dante’s actually a supporting character, but as I tried to tackle the story and realized some of the themes I wanted to play with, his role grew over time. I’ll admit, in the current day and age, there’s a definite appeal to two characters from different factions working together as well.

I don’t want to ramble on too much further, as I should let the story speak for itself. I really hope you enjoy it, and I’d love to hear your feedback! It’s going to be fun going on this journey, and it’s the awesome people I meet every year at Izumicon who make me feel like it’s worth giving this a shot.

And I’ll leave you with some old pieces of concept art from earlier version of Absolution, as well as a new image of the hero of The Third Rule, Owen Matthias. We haven’t seen the last of Owen by a long shot… but that’s (literally) a story for another time.

P.S. – You can also feel free to stick around and read my silly posts about other things, like being a theme park nerd, our ridiculous pets and whatever else strikes my fancy at a given moment.

P.P.S. – Please don’t judge my writing too harshly on what you see on this page. It’s con week and I’ve not slept nearly as much as I probably should have!

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