We all come to the Bolthole for a variety of different reasons. Some of us come for one or two specific reasons, while others come because of the whole experience. So I thought it would be a great idea to really explore what some of these reasons are. Mind you, this is not an extensive list and is not meant to be, but I just want to highlight some of the key ones that I feel are the most important.
Writing/Getting Published/Critiquing and Feedback
A lot of the people who come to the Bolthole come to sharpen and fine-tune their writing skills. Some of us want to be published by Black Library, some want to be published for original fiction. Some people also would like both, such as me and a few of the other forumites I know. So for you fine folks who just want to be published in general, what does the Bolthole offer you?
Well for you aspiring writers out there, we have dedicated fan fiction forums for the Warhammer Fantasy and the Warhammer 40,000 settings. While the latter is more popular, we still encourage people to write for both of them equally. Our efforts are helped in part by the fact that several of the more regular forumites visit these forums quite often, ready to provide feedback for your stories. Simply post your story or stories in part or in full as you like and let our critiquing machines grind their gears and get back to you. I can guarantee that you will not be disappointed.
We also have a general fanfic forum, called Warhammer Adrift, where you can take either of these settings and twist and turn them into your vision of life in these two universes. Anything and everything goes, whether you want to bring back the Primarchs or turn the clock ten minutes after midnight, or you want Malekith to finally destroy Ulthuan, or what have you. Alternate-verse fiction, and especially crossover fiction tied to non-GW IPs, such as Starcraft and Mass Effect for example, is also quite popular here.
Then there is the Collaborative Fiction forum where you can meet together and discuss group stories or plan out your GW-related RPG nights. The RPG section is particularly popular and by my last count there were at least two separate RPG sessions being run for 40K. So come out and give it a whirl!
The Other Fiction forum is where you can post your original, non-GW fiction and get some great feedback on. We have had several of our forumites get published for their original work and they are doing a fantastic job of continuing it so kudos to these folks for going the extra mile.
There is also the Competitions & Challenges forum, where we run our monthly Read-in-a-Rush competition and other challenges. RiaR is run by JD Dunsany and it is a monthly short-short fiction comp for stories set in either of GW’s settings. The winners are immortalised on the forum with their names and their stories being linked in our Winners’ thread.
But hold on! We are not finished yet. There is still one more forum to go: the General Fiction Discussion forum. Here, you can debate the various techniques of writing, stay abreast of some of the competitions in the literary/publishing/what-have-you world, talk about how to do good reviews, how to design your worlds and creatures and a whole lot more that just will not fit in this post. Definitely check this one out.
So whether you want to be published by the good folks at Black Library or any of the other publishers anywhere else in the world, we can definitely help you get to that goal! Any questions you have, feel free to ask anyone in the mod team. Don’t hesitate!
In case anyone is wondering, you can find our copyright policy in the rules section here. Just scroll down to the bottom of the first post.
Of course, we are primarily a forum dedicated to the published works of Black Library so it is only fitting that we get together to discuss their products, as well as talk about the larger “setting” of Games Workshop in terms of Forge World, Fantasy Flight Games, Warhammer Forge or anything else I am forgetting.
We regularly discuss their latest and past releases in equal measure through our BL Products and Announcements forum. We even keep track of their latest and incoming releases, new artwork, the BL submission windows and much more. This forum also has two separate sub-forums: the Spoiler Zone and Ask the Authors.
The Spoiler Zone is where you can discuss the novels, comics, audio dramas et all to your heart’s content free of the dreaded spoiler tags. Keep in mind that we have a policy of not talking about the details of any of these products either in the shoutbox or anywhere else on the meta-forum. The Spoiler Zone is dedicated for that purpose so please respect that.
Ask the Authors is where you can talk to your favourite authors from Black Library and ask them about their old and new publications equally, as well as get an in-depth understanding of their views and reasons on why they did things the way they did. The latest additions to our already formidable line-up are Sarah Cawkwell and Andy Smillie.
Please be aware that you have to be respectful of these fine folks at all times because they are usually quite busy with their different projects and they may not always get the chance to respond to your queries straight away. Also, any problems you may have with their work, just check those problems at the door and should you wish to, please address the authors with the respect they deserve. Their involvement with the meta-forum is at their own pleasure and is a great bonus for us and we would hate for any situation to arise that jeopardizes our relationship with them and with Black Library. The same applies to Games Workshop.
Then there is the Worlds of Warhammer forum where you can debate the two settings themselves in detail, and get answers to your questions about a variety of things. Again, everything and anything goes, whether it is a question about the lost Primarchs, or the fate of Archaon, or how the Imperial Guard functions or what have you.
Rounding off all the main forums is the About the Bolthole forum where we do/will be posting information and news relevant to the running of the entire site. There is also a Members Only section where you can read exclusive excerpts from upcoming novels and even participate in the rare members only comps.
And finally we have the Insanely Off Topic forum, where you can discuss anything and everything that doesn’t pertain to the rest of the meta-forum. Video Games, TV shows, science news, the Zombie Apocalypse, world sports and so on. Here we also have the Debater’s Lounge sub-forum which is a closed forum where members can discuss certain contentious topics about world affairs among other things. This sub-forum is request-only and you will need to contact one of the moderators to gain access to this area. All the rules and regulations for the rest of the board, respecting the opinions of your fellow forumites in particular, still stand so please keep that in mind.
Of course, a forum like this is never complete without being able to talk to your fellow forumites “live”. Which is where the Shoutbox comes in. Basically a browser chat window that it is, quite a few of us usually hang out here throughout the day, talking about random things and relevant things in equal measure. A lot of goofing on goes here so you are always welcome to the fun, although we have been known to be serious as well on a few surprising occasions.
In the end, it is all about the community. We are a fairly diverse community in terms of religions, nationalities, political & social views, our approach to reading, our views on what we ready and a multitude of other things. What I have discussed so far, or rather aimed to show you all, is to highlight the strongest reasons why we all come together to this meta-forum and create that community.
If you come here to talk about Black Library products and news, then we are definitely the premier place for that given that we often have the Editors and the Authors themselves come in and chat with us. If you come here to read and write fan fiction, and even get published, then also we are a very good place for you as regards Black Library. If you come here to talk about video games, then we have a place for you, albeit a small one; although rest assured, quite a few of us are avid gamers and you will find a tight community here for that.
This has been a rather informational post, so I hope you all excuse that for this time. We do have lots of exciting stuff coming up. In particular, over the next two weeks, you can expect to be reading interviews with such great authors as William King of Gotrek & Felix/Space Wolves fame, Nick Kyme of Dwarfs/Salamanders fame as well as Ben Counter of Grey Knights/Soul Drinkers fame. I had a great time coming up with the Q&A for these gentlemen, so rest assured that the interviews will be highly exciting.
Also, please remember that if you would like to contribute to the blog, then simply contact either me or Squiggle and we will work out whatever topic you had like to write about.
Until next time folks! ~Shadowhawk