Announcing my Magic book, 'Generation Decks'

Dear all,

In late 2012, I started work on a book combining the history of Magic, with a memoir of my time playing it. I self-published it in late 2013 as 'So Do You Wear A Cape?' and many of you here went on to be my earliest and most supportive readers. First off - a huge thank you to you all! I know very few of you personally and still you took a huge leap of faith in me, for which I'm eternally grateful.

So, I thought I'd share my good news with you: In Spring next year, a print version of my book is being published by Rebellion (publishers of 2000AD amongst other things) and should be available in a book store near you.

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Here's the press release more details:

What that means is, we finally get a mass-market book telling the story of the game we love and the community we're part of. I'm really excited about that and I hope that this reaches a whole bunch of new readers.

Please note, this is a much more polished and slightly amended version of So Do You Wear A Cape? I've had to trim some parts (alas, my chapter on the Eternal formats fell by the wayside - it was the most important to me, but too esoteric for a non-player) and others have been added to (primarily memoir to sustain the book's narrative). Basically, I don't want you guys to be confused by the new title (aimed at a wider audience) and feel cheated reading the same book. But, what I do hope is, that anyone who felt touched by the book, or felt it explained their passion in an accessible way, would be stoked to put the print edition on their shelf or in the hands of their friends and family.

I love Magic. I wish a much wider public understood it and played it themselves. And that's really what this book is all about; sharing some of the justifiable pride we should take in ourselves as a community. I hope you're excited about the book and I hope you'll lend me the same support you did when I was a bloke you'd never heard of, putting out his scrappy e-book.

Thanks once again to everyone who's read my work. Glad to be part of 'Generation Decks' with you all.


PS I just linked to the pic on publishers site and jeez, it's massive. If there's an easy way for me to resize that, please let me know!

last edited by sodoyouwearacape

I hope it's not too late to point out that the very first word on this announcement is wrong. It should say "empowering" and not "enpowering".

Second, maybe a native English speaker could confirm if "the unofficial story of gaming phenomenon Magic: the Gathering" is a phrase that can be said. For my (German-reading) brain, it should totally be "The Unofficial Story of the Gaming Phenomenon Magic: The Gathering" but I am not sure about this.

Good luck with the book!

@peterflugzeug Hi Peter, still an early draft of the cover don't worry. But thanks for pointing out - that's a graphic designer typo for sure 🙂

And you can certainly drop an article like that - it's a quite journalistic usage. 🙂

@peterflugzeug said:

Second, maybe a native English speaker could confirm if "the unofficial story of gaming phenomenon Magic: the Gathering" is a phrase that can be said. For my (German-reading) brain, it should totally be "The Unofficial Story of the Gaming Phenomenon Magic: The Gathering" but I am not sure about this.

This is grammatically correct, actually, but I get why it sounds odd. Its using the noun phrase "gaming phenomenon" as an adjective to describe Magic. Reading it as though there was a comma after "phenomenon" might make it sound more right to you, with just a brief pause.

Titus, I always wanted to read your book but put it off. As an MTG player, is it more worth it for me to read the self-pub'd one or this one?

last edited by McAra

@McAra Hi, I would say at this point, by all means put it off and wait for the print version. At some point in the near future, the publisher will be taking down my original ebook anyway.

Most of the Magic content is still in the book - it's just been slightly streamlined and I've worked really hard on polishing the hell out of the writing. I'm proud of what I put out originally, but I'm pretty sure this animproved version of it. Hopefully you'll enjoy it - and thanks for the support 🙂

Obviously, when I'll up date this thread nearer the time with the release date and so on. And, though, I'm not sure where you are, this will be distributed in both the UK and the US, so it should be fairly accessible.

I will absolutely read this!

I loved the first book. I actually read it several times, and it inspired me in a lot of ways. I'm glad to hear about this, and I can't wait to buy a copy!

@sodoyouwearacape You mentioned that they're taking down the Ebook at some point. Does that mean I won't be able to read my digital copy of the original after that point, or just that it will no longer be available for purchase? Last time I checked, I could still read my copy on Google Play.

I would phrase it, "The Unofficial Story of the Magic: The Gathering Gaming Phenomenon."

I very much enjoyed the e-book. Congratulations on getting it published!

Thanks guys for the support! Really appreciate it!

Joe just to clarify, by 'taking down the ebook', I meant simply withdrawing it from sale - if you've purchased a copy, I can't see that being a problem.

And also Joe, as I was saying this is very much the same book, like 90% the same - just nipped and tucked to make it a better product, both in terms of the writing and hopefully accessability. While I do hope that anyone who enjoyed it first time round might add a paper copy to their shelf, it's not my intention that anyone buy this thinking it's a brand new book and feel conned!

Still, there's a lot of readers out there who prefer print - and this is hopefully a good way to tell them all about the game that has changed our lives 🙂

Out of interest: I would be very interested in anyone's thoughts on the new title and cover - does it speak to you guys more than the previous title (which may have been too cryptic or self-deprecating)? As to the cover, is the nod to Magic's colours enough of a hint to you that the books is indeed about Magic? Although the publisher has final say on all these things, it would certainly be helpful to have your thoughts.

I think the Cover looks very esoteric to be honest. I get that the 5 colors are included and that magic is kind of a religion to us, but to someone who doesn't know it yet, it might look to eso-style.

Greatly prefer the original title (and cover). It established your voice and made it clear that you were socially adept, had a sense of humor, and understood the perception of the hobby among those outside it. In short, the title worked to negate many of the stereotypes a lay person might have otherwise begun the book with, or convinced them to read the book at all.

last edited by wappla

@wappla Hi Wappla, you pretty much summed up my feelings exactly - unfortunately, this is very much driven by the publishers. I think it's worth noting that my title didn't chime with everyone (for example Stephen and Kevin when they mentioned their book on the SMIP podcast) - so, although I prefer it for the reasons you've mentioned, I think it's also legitimate to wonder if a majority of the Magic community prefers being spoken to in another register. It's entirely possible that most Magic players aren't ready poke fun at themselves and would rather something straighter. Ultimately, I would like to reach those readers, too, so I've had to make a rather pragmatic decision on that fron.

Also agree with you @peterflugzeug on the cover. Again this is an area where contractually, the publisher has the final say. But I am pushing for something that looks less diffuse - and less like an astrology title...

Appreciate the feedback guys, thanks for all the help!

I'm really looking forward to reading this! The new cover seems super sci-fi, which I suppose is understandable given the publisher, although I think it is more to do with the typeface than the image. I actually really like this cover image although as someone whose early experiences of MTG were in a 'comic book and collectable card store' the previous cover did make some sense to me. I guess it's not possible for you to use anything that involves WOTC IP, which is a shame because the cards themselves are the most instantly recognisable image you could put on the cover.

Thanks @Ked - and yes the font is a bit Star Trek-y... definitely needs a bit of tempering. But I'm grateful for the feedback and support and I hope the book will meet your expectations. I feel like I've done a good job on it - just trying to fine-tune stuff like the cover now.

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