Fantasy maps, publishing, editing, and writing: an interview with Dewi Hargreaves

I interviewed Dewi Hargreaves about his freelance work making maps for fantasy books, working at an independent press, and much more.

I’m here today with Dewi Hargreaves–writer, artist, editor, and all-around fantastic human being.

Picture us sitting in front of a crackling log fire, in a room with dark wood panelling and a wall covered in bookshelves. On the rug before the fire sleeps a unicorn.

We’re actually doing this by email, but I think it’s more fun if you picture the room with the unicorn.

I asked Dewi to keep his responses PG rated, and he almost entirely succeeded. I only had to bleep out one word. Otherwise Dewi’s responses are entirely his own, except for a few additional paragraph breaks.

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The endless cycle of my inbox

My inbox and my life have a natural cycle of growth and decay. Here I explain this cycle in all its glory. Killer hamsters included.

I want to talk about looking for a critique partner because that’s all I’ve been thinking about for the past few months.

(What do you mean it hasn’t been months since I blogged to say I was looking for a critique partner?)

But I haven’t locked in a critique partner yet and you don’t want to read that post twice, so I’m not going to talk about it today.

*screams into a cushion for a while, gets cat hair in her mouth*

Instead I thought I’d tell you about the endless cycle my inbox goes through. It’s more exciting than it sounds–there are killer hamsters.

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Ten things I learned from Minecraft

Minecraft isn’t just a game, it’s life. You can learn so much from it if you pay attention. And breed enough llamas.

I fell in a Minecraft hole recently. I didn’t know version 1.16 had just come out, that was just a happy surprise.

Love my blue fire.

Yes, I probably lost a good bit of writing time building a new castle, but Minecraft isn’t just a game of digging and building. It also contains important life lessons.

Here are ten of mine.

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Dragons from Micah with love**

Micah Chaim Thomas (Writer. Artist. Difficult to explain.) honoured me with some dragon art loosely inspired by my fantasy novel in progress.

** Yes, I added the “love” part, but giving a person a dragon is a form of love, so I don’t apologise.

The talented and enigmatic Micah Chaim Thomas (@micah_chaim on Twitter) recently deemed me worthy of receiving dragons from him. I’ll spend the rest of my life trying to deserve this honour (since I don’t have a dog).

The first challenge was to explain the dragons in my book without having to share my first draft prose. (Yes, I know I’m on the tenth draft, but I rewrote so much that most of the scenes aren’t.)

Big, scaly, wings, claws. They’re not evil, but they’re not fond of humans. And they have oppressive minds. You meet a dragon and you want to worship it.

Somewhere in the middle of explaining I got an effusive “yes!”.

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What we all need right now: pictures of cute animals

We’re living through a momentous time in history, which means that right now life is scary and it sucks. I know you don’t want to hear more about the coronapocalypse, so here are some cute animals to brighten your day.

I wanted to write a blog post to reach out to people who are having a hard time in the pandemic–and that’s a lot of people–but the last thing most people want to hear is more about coronavirus. And that’s a problem, because right now coronavirus is all I can think about.

Finally I figured out a solution: cute animal pictures.

You’re welcome.

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