I heard the news a few days ago that Steven Russell of Rite Publishing, had died suddenly in a car accident. He was 42 (also my age). This was a tragic loss for the gaming community, because Steven helped so many people get a start in writing, art, cartography, and all the other aspects that make up game publishing--not to mention the many, many great products that have enhanced people's games at the table.

I wrote quite a bit for Rite Publishing in the early days of my freelancing, all of it for the Pathways magazine. I wrote articles in #10, #12, and then spread out an adventure over #15 through #17. I think that adventure, "Scattered Sheaves," is still some of my better work, and that's because of Steven's guidance and assistance. Only Axel Carlsson did more for my initial freelance writing to give me the confidence that, yes, I could really do this.

More than giving me an opportunity to write, though, Steven showed me what a third party publisher could really do. He continued to produce excellent product after excellent product, and inspired me to think that if I could do a fraction of what he does, I could call myself a success.

Thanks for being such an inspiration to us all, Steven. You will be missed.

(Now, off to plan my Demolished Ones mini-campaign and put more Rite Publishing material to use!)