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Author Bret James Stewart's Monthly Musings, Issue #009 --New Release
January 09, 2016

In this issue, Bret James Stewart grapples with the following:

"The Wisdom of Trees IX: Holly" poem

The Caverns of Lalarik adventure module for Dungeoneer Games

Pretty Maids All in a Row

No Enchantment but His Own...

Welcome to the ninth Monthly Musings newsletter wherein I let you know what’s going on in my world and why you should care.
It is nice to have the holidays behind us, at least for me, because I can finally get back to work. I hope you are having a wonderful and blessed New Year, so far. Mine has been great.

I continued on "The Caverns of Lalarik," a modular adventure for Dungeoneer Games, completing the dungeon population. Next up is writing the draft of the adventure text, which is, as you might imagine, the longest part of the job. I was able to create a new plant monster for the game, so that was cool.

I completed "The Wisdom of Trees IX: Holly," finally. I envision The Wisdom of Trees collection as having 15 poems, so I am over halfway there. This is one of the longest and certainly the most technical poem I've written, and I am pleased with how it turned out. It is an interesting take on the ever-present battle of the sexes. Let the berry-bashing begin.

I continued working on "Pretty Maids All in a Row." I essentially doubled the word count, although that isn't especially important other than as a marker of activity. I was able to add a drunken buddy to the story, and that adds a certain level of fun and unimpeded honesty to the tale.

Finally, the project that took up the majority of my time during the holidays was writing an academic article entitled "'No Enchantment but His Own:' Beorn, Bombadil, and the Sacralization of J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-Earth." As the title implies, this article deals with the concept of enchantment and how the tropically-similar characters of Beorn from The Hobbit and Tom Bombadil from The Lord of the Rings contribute to this characteristic. I was blessed to be able to spend a lot of time on the subject, and I feel that I addressed all pertinent aspects of Beorn and Bombadil. I like to dig deep in literary writings. I hope to submit the paper to journals soon so that it will be available to the public.

Thank you for checking out my newsletter. I’ll have more for you next month. Until then, keep reading and growing.

Sincerely, Bret James Stewart

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