2021 Manifold Sky Roadmap

2020 is in the trash and 2021 is now upon us! In preparation for the year ahead, I'm taking this opportunity to lay out a flexible roadmap for the creative work I'd like to get done over the coming 12 months.   Since this roadmap isn't tied to any event in particular, consider this article preliminary as of its first publishing date; items may be added in the near future as I get a better sense of what remains to be done. As I accomplish projects related to the roadmap, I will come back and update any titles with article text or block links. I'm hoping that this will help me remain accountable to these goals.   Anyways, without further ado, let's get into the details!  

The Garbage Man Arc

The goal of my articles related to The Garbage Man has been to turn these ideas into a full-length (~100,000 words) novel which can make it through the publishing process. For the last several years, one of my New Year's resolutions has boiled down to "this is the year I get published!" 2021 is no different, but I do feel closer than ever to finally following through. I'm giving this goal my top priority this year!   Ideally, this novel would be followed with an exclusive content document which would allow readers to use the story as a roadmap for RPG adventures in the proprietary BCGR tabletop roleplaying system. Players with both documents would be able to directly participate in the adventures of Angela Foxglove, Feumont Atsuhi, the crew of the PPH Canopy, and The Garbage Man himself as they struggle to determine the fate of the Manifold Sky, plumb the deadly secrets of the Glass-Block Fortress, and discover the truth of the Celestial Realms and the The Curved Time which predated them. A fully-fledged campaign setting book for the Manifold Sky setting is ideally in the future as well, though this will likely have to be a project for 2022 and beyond - the BCGR system itself is in closed beta at the moment, and that has to be published before (or in tandem with) a full campaign setting.  

Public Articles


Other Information

  • Manuscript Title - 'The Garbage Man Arc' is only a working title as of yet; part of the journey will be coming up with a title which captures the readers' interest without giving too much away.
  • Worldbuilding integration - How will I include enough worldbuilding to make the Manifold Sky immersive without turning it into walls of text and/or leaving the reader needlessly confused?
  • Flight of the PPH Canopy (map)


  • (Title pending) - Untitled full-length novel about The Garbage Man's quest to overturn the order of the world, the quest of Parasol Private Holdings and the Hive City Royals to defeat them, and the discovery of the true nature of the Manifold Sky setting.
  • (Title pending) Adventures - A series of BCGR adventure modules based on the aforementioned full-length novel.

The Guilde Gazette

The Guild Gazette was a project idea originating all the way back in August of 2020. Originally, it was intended to be semi-regular project (perhaps weekly?) designed to put out a constant stream of storytelling and worldbuilding content. In 2021, assuming my other projects get done before the end of the year, I'd like to revisit this concept in earnest. To do this, I will have to meet several requirements:
  • I will have to set a 'deadline' for articles.
  • I will have to set a standard for length and style of content. This may require a degree of additional research, as I have little experience with a journalistic style of writing- indeed, learning a new writing style is part of the project's appeal.
  • I will have to establish one or more characters with different writing voices to be the 'narrator' of these articles. It would likely break immersion if I, as the dashing gentleman-professional behind the keyboard in meatspace, came through on content that supposedly takes place within my own fictional universe. These characters would, by necessity, have to be connected to the Navigator's Guild in general and The Guild Gazette in particular, though they can otherwise be of any race or national origin within the Manifold.
  • I will have to make a title bar. As a corollary, this may have to change once Guild Pidgin (and, by extension, all the other major languages contributing to it) are more fleshed out with regard to their written forms.
  • I will have to decide if other content (i.e. editorials, comics) will be included and when. These may turn up later, as some may require the development of new skills on my part (i.e. hand illustration), but that's a question for the future.
  Once The Guild Gazette is more established as a facet of the Manifold Sky as a creative project, I may be interested in creating other variants of the articles found therein. For example, I think a purportedly dieselpunk setting isn't really complete without an appropriately hammy lofi radio newscast or adventure serial as was popular in the relevant time period. In any case, these additions should wait until after I've established the Guild Gazette as a habit, so we'll see where we get this year.  

Exclusive Content

As some of you may know, I have a set of exclusive content for followers on Patreon or individuals in my real-life social group. Most of this content relates to BCGR rules for playing tabletop roleplaying games set in the universe of the Manifold Sky. While most of this is not visible to the public, certain aspects of it (i.e. the MartMart International price list) are visible and in dire need of maintenance. To keep up with this, I need to work on the following this year:
  • Update the Exclusive Content Guide and keep it up to date as new articles are created.
  • Update the table shown in the Manifold Market category to reflect new additions (i.e. WorldEmber 2020 artices) and keep it up to date as new articles are created.
  • Create a stat block template for use on all items with BCGR statistics and apply it to articles which currently contain BCGR statistics.
  • Increase the number of articles overall which have relevant BCGR statistics.


If 2020 was the year of worldbuilding connected to spirituality, I would like 2021 to be the year in which I actually get the topographical arrangement of the Manifold Sky established. As established in articles like The Geometries of the Manifold Sky - A History, the Manifold Sky's unique geometry makes cartography significantly more difficult and time-consuming than it would otherwise be. I am unaware of any software which could automate the process of creating 80+ maps designed to perfectly tile within a cube (rather than a sphere). If anyone figures out a solution to this, let me know!   For now, though, mapping the cubes might require me to learn new software or figure out techniques for contstraining images in software I already know. Blender might let me 'mold' each cube as a 'negative' and then find some way to unroll it, but I'm still very much a layman when it comes to that program - my only really solid 3D modeling knowledge comes from the (relatively obscure) program Rhinoceros 3D. If I find time this year, between the projects outlined above and the various annual events, I'd like to get this worked out so that, by early to mid-2022, I'll have a set of 80 cube layer maps for readers to explore.  

Challenges, Contests, and Competitions

2020 was the first year I was able to participate in all the regular WorldAnvil events, and I aim to maintain that productive energy going into 2021. Summer Camp 2020 and WorldEmber 2020 felt good, being events which forced me out of my comfort zones and required me to maintain a steady level of writing output, though my NaNoWriMo was somewhat disappointing. My overarching goal is, like 2020, to not miss out on any official events and keep putting out fresh and exciting world-building content for both my readers and my own development as a creative writer.     During 2020, there was sometimes a perverse incentive for me not to work on previous projects because they wouldn't count towards current challenges. For example, part of the reason Bix and Z.K. in The Garbage Man Arc weren't fleshed out during WorldEmber 2020 was that, beacuse they were no longer stubs, working on them would ultimately detract from my challenge-official word count. This was a failure of planning on my part, as this was an eventuality I should have thought of if I was planning on participating. To remedy this, an additional goal I have is to plan out my progress on articles well in advance of any challenges in the hopes that I can more fully participate without losing sight of my major objective: getting a full-length novel out by the end of 2021.  


I'm publishing this document to both WA and the official Manifold Sky Discord in the hopes that doing so will help me maintain focus and stay true to my goals as outlined above. I will also mark this document as featured so that it stay on the world's front page as a further accountability measure.   If you're reading this and have any questions, comments, or suggestions, don't hesitate to let me know in the comments. Happy New Year, good luck in everything you're setting out to do yourself this year, and thanks for stopping by!   Werner Martinmaas/BCGR_Wurth, 1/1/2020 11:28 AM PST

Cover image: by Royal Enfield


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