Cathedris Themesong

Prompts by dwindling campire light, SC2022 Reading Challenge

~breathes in deep the cool relaxing post summer camp air~
— Stormbril
  Alas, summer camp is over. But while the event has ended, the inspirational spirit and creative energy lives on within our hearts for the remaining 11 months of the year, till camp begins once again. You need a hot summer campfire to produce good coals for the fiery embers of December!   This year had the wonderful format of themes for each section of prompts, and I really enjoyed it! While I personally only did 8 prompts in total, I had fun picking and choosing my favourite ones from each section, and completing them as best I could. From my initial readings throughout the month, it's clear that a lot of you had a great time with these prompts as well :D   Without further ado, let's get into reading some articles!  
~breathes out the exhaustion of a marathon in preparation for reading~
— Stormbril

My personal camp articles

If you're still looking for articles to add to your own reading challenge, or simply interested to see what I wrote this month, why not check out my pledge + tracker from July? :)
Summercamp 2022 Pledge and Tracker
Generic article | Aug 1, 2022

My pledge for what I had planned to do during July 2022, and also tracker for the 8 articles I actually ended up writing during July 2022. Check them out!

For this Reading Challenge, I'm going to dive into prompts that I didn't personally complete. Having done only 8, that opens up a lot to choose from, which made choosing actually pretty difficult haha. In the end I went for ones that I had ideas for, but no time to complete. This means they're prompts that I was interested in, and thus I think are going to be great places to learn and gain inspiration from.



A settlement that leads the known world in something.

My initial thoughts for this prompt were to twist it or take it to unexpected places. Playing around with what "leading" or even "settlement" could mean within the context of the prompt would be fun! I also just really like settlement articles themselves, and so with that in mind, let's dive into some really interesting articles.

By: TheChangeling
Settlement | Jul 24, 2022

The design of the settlement and the way it's explored in the article are immediately attention grabbing and very well done, with an excellent layout! I love the use of historical art and data to help bring it to life, too. I also enjoy that it's sort of vague as to what the settlement is leading the world in -- is it location, adventurers, or architectural style? It helps hold focus and makes you think about what you're reading as you read it.
By: Qurilion
Nindra, the Dreaming Cage
Settlement | Jul 27, 2022

Half-way between real and dreaming, Nindra is a light in the darkest part of Patala, searching for the truth to its ancient past and the well-worn charnel pits it left behind.

Q is a master of many things, but settlements and geography are things I particularly love to read from him, and Nindra is particularly well done and fascinating! It's a great reminder of how to lay out a city in a striking manner, and allow for change throughout it's history -- in this case, change brought on via terrifying "plague" bringing about a warrior-like culture that makes this small settlement into something more fortified.
By: Timepool
Talhe'ad: City of Death
Settlement | Jul 29, 2022

A city of bottomless pits, into which pilgrims travel from around the world to throw themselves down.

What even IS a settlement, and how can that be warped in your setting? Is it even required to be populated? It's another fascinating case of examining intended use and actual use of a thing or a place. With Talhe'ad the intended construction of the city is seemingly unknown -- but somehow these pits (remeniscent of The Enigma of Amigara Fault) exist, and people throw themselves in. Terrifying, dark, and wonderful.



A lost or discovered monument.

Landmarks and monuments are one of my absolute favourite things to read and write about. You can pack so much mystery and intrigue into them, and there's so many fascinating details to expand upon, especially if they're constructed things. ESPECIALLY when they're lost or discovered. I chose to go with some examples of great mystery and horror, or articles with really interesting history, for this section.

By: Hanhula
The Broken Peace
Building / Landmark | Jul 23, 2022

A declaration of hatred and spite by the unwitting prisoners of Terra Arcana against the gods that abandoned them.

One of the things that makes a monument or building truly interesting is the story, myth, or history behind its initial construction. The Broken Peace has a heartbreaking section on an entire group of magic users being ripped from their home, becoming so furious because of this that they used magic to build this "beacon of hatred". Anger towards the gods is built into this monument, seemingly in such great magical amounts that the monument cannot be truly destroyed.
By: AmélieIS
Old Temple to an Eldritch Horror
Building / Landmark | Jul 31, 2022

When gods fight together, the clashes of their power might uncovered things that should better remained buried deep under the earth...

Another fantastic example of gods being total jerks, and almost destroying the world -- this time by unearthing an ancient horrific building with the power to bring about terrible eldritch horrors. It's so important to think about either the creation of a building, or the discovery of a building, when writing about it -- and that's something that Amélie focuses on here. A building or monument doesn't have to be the main thing, rather the focus to build the rest around.
By: DapperCapricorn
Misplaced Lighthouse
Building / Landmark | Jul 31, 2022

A fun thing we authors have to play with when writing is contrasting weirdness with the mundane, generally ordinary things in mysterious situations. I love the way this lighthouse is introduced, found oddly in the middle of a forest with no records of construction, and no one within it. The lighthouse itself is fairly ordinary (aside from a unique paintjob), which just adds to the mystery of it even more! What is it doing here, how did it get here, and why?



An artifact that embodies a hideous or monstrous idea.

The entire monstrous theme of prompts were going to be my favourite section to write -- sadly, it came at the end of the month, right when I had no time to write them! So instead I shall live vicariously through these incredible items below. Items are a great opportunity to get weird and wild with a topic, and playing around with what monstrous even means with context is just fantastic.

By: Laurabones
Funny Bone Remover
Item | Jul 31, 2022

Humour and Horror make for an excellent pairing -- some good ol monstrous fun. I love this device because we're introduced to it in stages. Shown how it was intended to work, shown the intended new (but impossible) use, and shown what it does now in the hands of someone with dark magic. A truly great example article of how to blend different genres together, and how to think about different use-cases of an item over the ages.
By: Eraellas
The Flesh of Yov'urvil
Item | Jul 31, 2022

Mmmm, body horror, my favourite! And better yet, this artefact is actually a parasitic worm from a planet of flesh. I think there's so much interesting terrible things to be written regarding parasites -- what influence they have over the host, and what the resulting behaviour is after infection. Writing about parasites and hosts is a great opportunity for history and myth as well, as we examine the past of those previously infected.
By: Julian Ralid
Red Ball
Item | Jul 28, 2022

Small but feared

What does monstrous even mean? Does it have to be horrific, gruesome, and regard actual monsters? Why not make it something contextually monstrous, like the responsibility to lead a special project resulting in long hours and exhaustion, with such roles distributed at random via the whims of super-kids finding a simple red ball? I love this twist so much, and love how it highlights the importance of context with whatever you write.

Made with Midjourney

Look to the Future

My immediate future: starting school again. It's going to be tough, but I want to try and balance it with work on WorldAnvil as well -- and if I'm lucky, manage to use work on one as content for the other. We'll see how that goes!   I've been struggling this month to get back to a new-normal after moving and everything, but I think things are starting to settle down. Here are a few small goals I'm trying to keep in mind and complete as soon as I can:
  • Finish bonus information on all articles, launch Patreon
  • Begin commission work
  • Write more, specifically on the Legion and the ACSA
  • Prep God-husk information in preparation for WorldEmber
  • Read more -- both articles and books
  • Write some flash fiction or short stories
  • Made with Midjourney
    Thanks for taking the time to read this, I hope there were some articles here you hadn't yet seen and now get to enjoy as well! Additionally, I hope you had a lovely summer camp, and a great rest period during August. Here's to being creative and continuing to make things!
    — Stormbril

    Cover image: by SHOT


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