When the dice come out for a tabletop roleplaying game, many of us like to play a hero. Often we gamers think of our characters as heroes and we like to have them perform heroic actions. Sure, sometimes it can be fun to play the bad guy, but at its heart of hearts, tabletop RPGs were originally based around the notion of heroes working together to overcome evil and obstacles. If one looks back at the roots of RPGs, the original Dungeons & Dragons was much based upon epic fantasy, a genre of literature teeming with heroes of one stripe or another.
Today, Rogue Blades Foundation (RBF) seeks to promote heroes and all things heroic within literature. What is RBF? A literary publisher of heroic fiction and heroic-related nonfiction.
Rogue Blades Foundation supports heroes
Fans of sword and sorcery literature might recognize the name RBF as the publisher and not-for-profit sister to Rogue Blades Entertainment (RBE), a for-profit publisher of sword and sorcery material for more than a decade now. The goals of RBF and RBE are not exactly the same, thus it made sense to separate the two. RBF will focus upon larger projects generally beyond the scope of RBE.
Why do we need literature based around notions of the heroic? To answer this, take a look at the world we live within today. There is much progress in some areas, but there is little doubt there is plenty of strife. In such a world, heroes are needed — real heroes as well as their fictional equivalents.
Rogue Blades Foundation exists to embrace and promote heroes and heroic characteristics for the betterment of humanity in the present and future by providing readers with examples of the truly heroic. RBF will seek out and publish strong examples of heroes and heroic ideals with the intent of impressing upon the world — especially today’s young people — the importance of all things heroic, to build more readers and develop those readers into the leaders our world needs.
“Why are we determined on putting heroics into reading? We want to create books that aren’t forgotten, books that are not just set on a shelf — no matter how delightful the display — and never read. Our books should be enjoyed, should look read, should be read, and should inspire people to do and be more,” says Jason M. Waltz, the founder, executive director and president of RBF.
Admittedly much of this might sound overly lofty, even ambitious and naive. But gamers of all stripes are often readers, and for readers to fall in love with the written word it is necessary to provide them with reading material that spurs them intellectually and emotionally and makes them think while charging them up from inside. Art of this stripe is the type the publisher RBF endeavors to deliver.
Or to cut to the chase, Rogue Blades Foundation seeks to publish rollicking, fun adventure tales and intellectual nonfiction with a focus upon heroic ideals. As a nonprofit organization RBF pursues a vision of a universal embrace of the heroic found within literature and all forms of art.
All of this might sound interesting, but what does it mean for the average gamer or reader? First, it means you can expect some interesting fiction and nonfiction in the upcoming future. Second, if you are interested in helping to spread heroic ideals, there are a handful of ways in which you can help RBF with its mission. You could join RBF’s Ring of Heroes, allowing you to directly donate to the cause, but you could also become an RBF Companion Member, allowing you to receive excellent publications in book form directly from RBF and immediately impacting the success of RBF’s mission of “Putting Heroics into Reading.” If you like the idea of making a monthly donation, you can do so through Givebutter, but you can also make one-time donations through the Paypal Giving Fund.
For RBF’s immediate future, two books are already in the works. The first to be announced is Robert E. Howard Changed My Life, a collection of personal essays exploring the influence of Howard and his characters on the lives of the more than 30 contributors to this publication. You might recognize some of the names associated with this book, such as Michael Moorcock, Howard Andrew Jones, Steven Erikson and Adrian Cole. For further news and information regarding Rogue Blades Foundation, please check out the RBF web site or the RBF Facebook page.