Writer’s Workshop Submissions. Cycle 3, Week 1

Welcome to the (hopefully) new and improved Writer’s Workshop! :smile:

As was discussed here, with this new cycle, we’re going to introduce a few changes, that will hopefully spark more interest from readers as well as writers. To recap, the contest will now include:

  • an overall theme for the entire cycle

  • weekly story parameters

  • a story continuation “point system”

  • inclusion is the planned Stonehearth Scribes mod

So let’s get started!

As mentioned above, each cycle (4 weeks worth of stories), will have an overarching theme. This theme should be touched on in each weekly submission, and for simplicity’s sake, we’ll take week 1’s theme, and make that the “parent”.

As such, this cycle’s theme, thanks to @RoseyNineOneOne, is The Forging of a Kingdom. :+1:

Next week will have its own theme (Close encounters of the Bunny Kind), but those stories should be tied to the parent theme of The Forging of a Kingdom, and so on.

Submission rules (note: these will differ slightly from week to week)

  • You can only submit one story per week.

  • [color=blue]The story must tie in with this cycle’s theme “The Forging of a Kingdom”[/color]

  • [color=blue]The theme for this week is “The Forging of a Kingdom”[/color]

  • [color=blue]The story must include a female protagonist named Isana.[/color]

  • We’re asking for submissions to be no more than 400 words.

  • Vote for as many stories as you want - simply ‘like’ the associated post by clicking the heart at the bottom of the submission.

  • If you submit a story continuation from a previous week, there will be a varying number of automatic “likes” associated with the submission.

  • Keep all discussion of this week over here, as anything in this thread that isn’t a story will be moved or deleted.

Story submissions will close on Wednesday September 11th.

I know this is a lot to digest, so please, if there are any questions, feel free to pop over to the discussion thread and ask away.

Good luck writers! :smiley:

i suppose i’ll kick off the new cycle… i hope you enjoy the beginning of Isana’s travels… :smile:

The fringe territory. Isana's heart felt as though it would burst from her chest as she took in the vast openness before her. After months of labored travel, she and her haggard group of explorers had finally arrived at their destination.

"Isana? Oh, pardon me. Headman Isana? May we rest a bit, or do you intend to press on through the dead of night?"

Sighing inwardly, Isana slowly turned her gaze from the outstretched fields and let her piercing gray eyes settle on Cyrus. He was the youngest member of her expedition, seemingly with the most energy. Yet Cyrus was also the most vocal about his weariness. When he met Isana's eyes, Cyrus involuntarily took several steps back.

"You were saying, Cyrus? Something about rest, was it?"

Cyrus scanned the faces of his fellow travelers, looking for signs of consent. After several moments of pained silence, he cleared his throat, and weakly nodded for Isana to proceed.

She knew she pressed the team relentlessly, and had more of an edge than might be necessary. But they were so close now. Isana would prove to her father that she too could lead. She too could turn harsh terrain into a thriving settlement. Isana would show her father that this land would be more valuable as a working colony, instead of a simple outpost. After all, there were plentiful resources to be salvaged here.

There had to be. Again, she sighed.

"We make camp here for the night. At first light, we'll head over that embankment to the south, and make way for the water Aleric found during his scouting efforts."


A terribly large man, with shoulders nearly as broad as he was tall, emerged from the group.


"You're confident the water was pure? And it was fed from an underground reservoir?"

"Yes m'am."

Excitement mingled with a subtle sensation of fear and anxiety in the pit of her stomach. Isana surveyed the group, and lifted her chin ever so slightly.

"Very well. Tomorrow we begin anew. Tomorrow, we set forth to forge our own destinies, and make this land our home! Let's get some rest people. This journey has only just begun."

Isana beamed with pride at the ensuing merriment. In the growing darkness, the members went about their duties, setting up camp, and preparing for the impending cold. The work proceeded almost robotically as it had so many nights before. Until the first tremor hit.

Abruptly, the conversations came to a halt. Seconds later, another tremor. It rippled through the grounds surrounding the campsite. Isana gently clasped her hand upon the sword at her hip.


"Yes m'am?"

"You have first watch."

Isana Looked at the waterfall and back at the wagons loaded with the heavy bronze turbines.

“Get the cranes ready, we’ll start attaching the turbines tomorrow.” Commanded Isana.

Work began quickly the next day. The thick steel girders that made up the crane where in place, and the rest of the men opened the door to the magma forge, There was no heat in the room, as no lava had yet to be pumped up. They went about checking that in the time away nothing had been damaged. The main pipes that the lava would be piped though where set into the walls where water could douse the whole room in a matter of seconds.

“I have to say, they didn’t spare any expense with the Main Hall.”

Isana looked at Inegarwar and replied “They didn’t spare any expense with anything, this single settlement could single handedly save the empire from it’s metal production failures, and it’s also one of the most dangerous jobs in the empire.”

“Well, yes, anything to do with magma is dangerous.”

With that, the last of the turbines where in place, it had taken a record amount of time, about 6 hours to get them installed. A man yelled up from bellow.

“That’s the last of them, all bolted in, we’ve checked all the gearboxes and the axles. They’re greased up and free-rolling. We’re ready to activate the pumps!”

The empire had been having trouble with it’s metal industry, although, it’s magic had been booming, and with that, they made the discovery that would save the empire, the ability to enchant Steel into a material much stronger, and much more resistant to heat. This steel could be used for handling magma over long periods of time.

"Turn them on then, and as soon as they get up to heat throw in the first of the gold!

“Ok, They’ll be on in 10 minuets, should we activate the steam too?”

“Yes, we’re gonna be the first magma powered fortress since the golden age of dwarves!”

And, 10 minuets later, there was a rumble, and magma rushed up from below, heating the whole fortress. The pressure gauges climbed slowly at first, then higher and higher. Then, hitting the optimal pressure, released, sounding a large whistle though the fortress, soon to be echoed all over by the other pressure release valves.

“And We’re up!” Yelled Inegarwar

“Yes, we are.” Isana confirmed.

1 Like

If ya could hav seen it from tar outside yar would hav seen de bronze sparkle an shine mighty brightly on dere dark wooden planks.
But dis ere is awhole differnt story ya see.
Dat time back she was a hidin, stowaway ya see.
Its a mighty silly thing ta sneak onta dirigible, you gotsa eat an drink even.
So ya see she wasnot found outs yet, so maybe she was lucky sortsa.

Now ere look atsa map, see dat spot ere?
Ya dats were we are, see da is de trees outside an so on, but see all around us little spot ere all is white.
I gotsa tell you because its so, noone knows where in bloody ell we are now.
Dis evenin and dat beer aintnot holding out long enuff to tell de story all, but what a know is sumfing bad went down.
Sortsa storm and all around mighty shit.

Pictcha it, dat gigantic balloon segments, de ship had like over 2000 of em, going pop 10 at atime, people falling outta holes that oughtanot be there.
All on da bridge somehow deadened long time already.

Dats when de stowaway stepped up, little brat named Isana, did sumfing on da bridge to at least get us all down.
De people falling out whens was low did survive
Me an four of dem udder passengeers woke up with headakes as mighty as I wanta hav morrow mornin ya kno.

So’s we start building stuff, just ta be safe, cuz well there are goblins an udder critters.
We werenot doin so great trust me, but when we scouted sum, we found udder passengeers, so ya it was becoming cozy.
No beer tho, sad times.
We gotsa small outpost goin fer not too long, sum were wild about craftin our own dirigible.
Stupid plan I say so cuz I wanted me beer more than else all I stole me one balloon and went searchin’ fer survivers as smart as I.

Great stuff dis beer ere.
So lucky ta haf found yer small city proper.
Eh but can’t believe dat brat is yar queen now or what?
Haha Isana queen of Calmhaven – well if I gets beer I say cheers ya gots anudder subject.


reminder: submissions close in about 2 days… :smiley:

The Forging of a Kingdom
Excerpt from The Origin of the Toel State

“This isn’t working.”

The remark came from one of the soldiers in the caravan. “We keep heading off East, and every new location is worse than the last.”

The other soldiers in the division stared at the brash man’s words. Was he seriously mouthing back to the boss? Sure, she wasn’t a fighter like they were, but never would they think to try their luck against her. She was NOT a dainty little flower like the weaver Grenda.

No, Isana was the head matron of their band, and the middle-aged woman could easily drop the stupid swordsman. Instead, she looked at him with a mirthful grin. “You’re welcome to turn around. Just don’t light any more fields ablaze with the campfire.”

The sore look from the other villagers in the group brought the soldier’s face to flush. That was a nice area of plains, in all fairness.

“Don’t worry, we’ll find an even better place soon! I can feel it in my bones.” She laughed, giving the man a hard slap on the shoulder. Her charisma was one of the reasons everyone had voted her as the caravan’s leader. With new relief, they went on.

The group began to enter a mountainous region with steep cliffs and lush forests in the lowlands. “Ah, this is pretty promising! Take a peek at this,” she said as she held up her hand.

One of the soldiers stared. “…It’s dirt.”

“Of course it’s dirt. I meant look at the dirt. These mountains used to be volcanic a long time ago. This soil’s great for farming.”

One of the miners nodded in agreement. “Not only that, but we’ve taken a few samples of the rock. There’s a high ore concentration here.

“Exactly. So…what do think, here folks? And we’re sticking with the name?”

“Aye, this is it!” The people cheered, and—perhaps a bit premature—one of the crafters stuck a sign with TOEL written on it in the center of the group.

A rumble shook the woods below.

Isana stared, than began to smile. “Really…housewarming already?”

The canopy of trees suddenly exploded as an immense weathered golem rose towards them.


“Sure looks like it,” Isana smirked with anticipation. “Now, let’s get to work.” With an immense leap off the stone overhang, Isana led the charge against the monstrous threat to their new homeland.