Hero Forge and Productivity
Today’s post is a twofer, a double topic post that can help your creativity and productivity! It has been quite a good week for me. It seems wrong to say that in a way, due to the crisis that the world is going through, but I think it’s about making the most of the situation. We’re stuck indoors, but there’s a lot you can get done while sheltering in place.
How did this site exist for so long, and I didn’t find it? Last week I finally learned about Hero Forge, a site where you can create custom miniatures for tabletop gaming. Back in the 1990s, when miniatures were still mostly made of pewter, if you wanted one that closely matched a character you were playing in D&D or another game, you were out of luck. You could find a dwarf warrior, or a human wizard, or whatever else, but they’d never match closely enough.
Hero Forge gives you all sorts of choices, from faces to proportions to clothing. There are a bunch of races, including cat and bunny people, plus horns, tails, wings, tools, mounts, and so on. Most of the choices are in the fantasy genre, but there’s more, including science fiction and western options.
So, you can bet I created the two main characters and two main supporting characters from my novel, Bodacious Creed: a Steampunk Zombie Western. The site allows you to take screenshots to share as well.
Here they are, James “Bodacious” Creed, Anna Lynn Boyd, Rob Cantrell, and Jonathan Johns, aka Jonny.
You can purchase a downloadable model for $7.99, or order the high-quality, 3D printed figures for $19.99 each. Oh yes, if you add a mount, like a donkey, horse, or motorcycle, that will cost more, but there are several options and they look really good. I was impressed with how clothing, hair, and the like shift as you add different options, such as a backpack.
If you can afford it during this crisis and you need a personalized figure for an RPG or just because, I highly recommend making and ordering a figure. Otherwise, just have fun with it. Head over, create a free account, and let your imagination run free.
The Power of Tomatoes
Pomodoro is the Italian word for tomato, and a Pomodoro technique is a powerful productivity method. I heard about this a few years ago but I finally decided to try it. You see, I recently took a novel-writing course created by Russell Nohelty titled Write a Great Novel. Yes, I’ve written novels before, but there’s always something new to learn, and I learned a lot from this course. It’s free, and I encourage novelists, new and experienced, to take this class, too. It took me about three days, so it’s not a ton of work, but you’ll learn a lot.
In the section titled Getting your mind right Russel talks about the Pomodoro technique, and that convinced me to finally give it a try. It works like this. You set a timer for twenty-five minutes. During that time, you do one thing intensely, such as write your story or book, write a blog post, study for a class, draw, or whatever it is that you want to do in a productive way. After the twenty-five-minute block is over, you stop and take a five-minute break. Then, you do it again. After three or four Pomodoros you can take a half-hour break before you do more.
Of course, maybe you only have time for two or three of these, and that’s okay, too. You’ll be stunned at how much you accomplish. When I tried this two days ago, in an hour and a half, I wrote two-thousand three-hundred words of Bodacious Creed and the Jade Lake! I was busy with other things yesterday, but in one Pomodoro, I wrote a detailed outline of the next several chapters, which I plan to get to today.
This blog post? One Pomodoro. And I still have a minute left on it.
So, those are the most interesting things that I wanted to share from the past week! What are you working on? Feel free to leave a comment below! (I recently learned that I needed to open comments here, so you can now respond.)
“I kept always two books in my pocket, one to read, one to write in.”
–Robert Louis Stevenson