Local author Wil Radcliffe, who writes young adult fantasy, gains much of his inspiration from his own experiences growing up in northeast Indiana. The scenic forests, lakes and farmland are ingrained into his writing and his own background as an Indiana boy who came up in the midst of our rural surroundings.
He is a graduate of Ball State University’s Telecommunications Department and earned the David Letterman Telecommunications Scholarship based on a script and storyboards featuring his original character, the mad goblin scholar Bugbear.
Like many authors who dream of selling a Danielle Steel-like 800 million books, Radcliffe supplements his income with his day job as the creative specialist at Three Rivers Archery, the world’s largest traditional archery supplier. That vocation has worked out well, as he has incorporated archery into his books. It has also enabled him to establish tie-ins with the development of a line of Noggle Stones youth archery products.
An avid fan of comic books, Radcliffe decided to create a hybrid superhero character for his breakout novel, Noggle Stones. Instead of a bombastic entity with a chiseled physique and endowed with superpowers, he created the lovable goblin Bugbear. Bugbear is short and unimposing, and instead of using brute force, spider webs, flying or lightning bolts, this character utilizes his intellect as his secret weapon.
As happens with many artists, plots and characters develop over a long period of time before they’re actually shared with an audience. Radcliffe says that Bugbear was a product of his imagination from his days as a junior high student in Fremont. Over time, Bugbear and his sub-characters evolved from their original conception into more mainstream series-worthy personalities. Influenced by popular adult fantasy authors like J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis and T.H. White, Radcliffe honed his craft at writing in his genre and also drew for the suspense and drama elements from television shows like Doctor Who, Dark Shadows and The Night Stalker. He also credits Douglas Adams, Terry Pratchett and Monty Python for influencing the humorous aspects of his writing. The books are set in the 1800s, and Radcliffe developed an affinity for that time period as a result of reading about infamous frontier bandit Silas Doty.
Radcliffe’s writings are well thought out, and he has a structured format that carries the plot. “Unity is an important theme in Noggle Stones,” Radcliffe says. “The characters must put aside their differences and learn to work together in order to defeat an ancient, ominous threat which has been reawakened by the uniting of the two worlds. Alliances, apprenticeships and friendships all play an important part in the advancement of the plot as well as the development of the characters.”
Young adult fantasy readers like to identify with the characters by seeing them as well as reading about them, making illustrations an important aspect of the finished product. Originally, Radcliffe shaped the characters by drawing them himself. After deciding to get serious and put out a more professional offering, he made the decision to use professional illustrators. One of the most recognizable contributing artists is Ernie Colo, the primary artist on the Richie Rich comic books for several years.
Noggle Stones Book I – The Goblin’s Apprentice has spawned a sequel, Noggle Stones – The Tragic Empire. As the series celebrates its 10th anniversary, there are both the Noggle Stones Role Playing Game and the Noggle Stones Card Game to add to the fun. The role playing game puts the players in the roles of either mysterious creatures of myth and legend or humble folk of turn-of-the-century America. The Noggle Stones Role Playing Game is available in print and digital download. The Noggle Stones Card Game is a two-player game that pits the Hero Characters against the Shadow Characters in a fun, fast-paced format. You will enjoy the endearing characters Bugbear, Manchester, Maga, Riley and Tudmire as you take a step back in time with the fantastical Noggle Stones Books, Games and licensed Noggle Stones Archery line compliments of our own Fremont, Indiana author, Wil Radcliffe.
Noggle Stones books and games are all available at www.Nogglestones.com, game retailers, comic book stores and, of course, Amazon.
by Patrick Boylen
Thursday, September 29, 2016
Click on the headings below for full calendars
Empower Her World — International goods, jewelry and clothing market, global fashion show and international fare and drinks, 6-9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29, Auer Center for Arts and Culture, Fort Wayne, $75, 267-9048
Columbia City Haunted Jail — Haunted tours of the jail where Charles Butler was hung, 7-9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29; 7-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Sept. 30-Oct. 1; 7-9 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2; 7-9 p.m. Wednesday-Thursday, Oct. 5-6; 7-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Oct. 7-8; 7-9 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 9; 7-9 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, Oct. 11-13; 7-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Oct. 14-15; 7-9 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 16; 7-9 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, Oct. 18-20; 7-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Oct. 21-22; 7-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, Oct. 23-27; 7-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Oct. 28-29; 7-9 p.m. Sunday-Monday, Oct. 30-31; 7-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Nov. 4-5 and 7-9 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 6, Columbia City Haunted Jail, Columbia City, $13-$20, www.columbiacityhauntedjail.com
Jake Roberts — Comedy at Calhoun Street Soups, Salads & Spirits, Fort Wayne, 8 p.m., $17.50, 456-7005
Chris Worth & Company — Variety at St. Mary's Catholic Church, Fort Wayne, 7:30-10:30 p.m., no cover, 424-8231
Columbia Street West Unplugged — Variety at Columbia Street West, Fort Wayne, 8 p.m., no cover, 422-5055
Jazz Jam — Open jam at Sweetwater Sound, Fort Wayne, 7-8:30 p.m., no cover, 432-8176
Jeff McDonald — Folk at Don Hall's Guesthouse, Fort Wayne, 7-10 p.m., no cover, 489-2524
Open Mic — Hosted by Mike Conley at Mad Anthony Brewing Co., Fort Wayne, 8:30-11 p.m., no cover, 426-2537
Open Stage Jam — Hosted by Pop 'n' Fresh at Office Tavern, Fort Wayne, 8:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m., no cover, 478-5827
Shelly Dixon & Jeff McRae — Variety at Checkerz Bar & Grill, Fort Wayne, 8-10 p.m., no cover, 489-0286
Tronic — EDM at O'Sullivan's Italian Irish Pub, Fort Wayne, 10 p.m., no cover, 422-5896
TK's Bar & Grill — Karaoke w/Ambient Noise Ent., 8 p.m.
Club Paradise — The Voice Karaoke w/DJ Rob & DJ B, 8:30 p.m.
Piggy's — Karaoke w/DJ Shaun Marcus, 10 p.m.
Mimi's Retreat — Karaoke, 8 p.m.
Taps Pub — Sidecar Gary's Karaoke & DJ, 8-11 p.m. , no cover
Arena — American Idol Karaoke w/Jay, 8 p.m.
Deer Park Irish Pub — Bucca Karaoke w/Bucca, 10 p.m. , no cover
Double Down — Shooting Star Prod. w/Stu, 9 p.m.
Latch String Bar & Grill — American Idol Karaoke, 8 p.m. , no cover
Nick's Martini & Wine Bar — American Idol Karaoke, 8-11 p.m. , no cover
North Star — Shut Up & Sing w/Michael Campbell, 8 p.m. , no cover
O'Sullivan's — Tronic, 10 p.m.
O'Sullivan's Italian Irish Pub — Tronic, 10 p.m. , no cover
Piere's — House DJ, 9 p.m.
Wrigley Field Bar & Grill — Live DJ, 10 p.m. , no cover
Paul's Pub — Shotgun Prod. Karaoke, 10 p.m.
Rack and Helen's — American Idol Karaoke w/TJ, 10 p.m. , no cover
Click header for complete Stage & Dance calendar
Click header for complete Movie times
200@200: The Spirit of Competition — Exhibit of Fort Wayne’s “firsts” from the early days of organized sports to the present, Monday-Saturday thru Sept. 30, History Center, Fort Wayne, 426-2882
Afros: A Celebration of Natural Hair — Photographs by Michael July, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 16, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, $5-$7 (members, free), 422-6467
Art of Joanne Schultz — Works by Joanne Schultz, Cara Wade and Matt Mabis, Friday-Sunday thru Oct. 9, Garrett Museum of Art, Garrett, 704-5400
Catherine Blyth and Elizabeth Wamsley — Paintings and works in clay, Tuesday-Saturday thru Oct. 3, Crestwoods Frame Shop & Gallery, Roanoke, 672-2080
Decatur Sculpture Tour — 31 original sculptures and 15 permanent exhibits on display, walking tour maps available, thru April 1, 2017, Decatur, free, 724-2605
Diane Groenert — Fort Wayne-based artist exhibits her paintings, daily thru Sept. 30 (reception 7-9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29), Henry’s Restaurant, Fort Wayne, 426-0531
Ethan Ross — Hybrid landscapes shot with a 4x5 camera, Monday-Friday thru Oct. 9, Spotlight Gallery, Mimi and Ian Rolland Art and Visual Communication Center, University of Saint Francis, Fort Wayne, 399-7999
Fall Colors and Themes — Paintings and photos depicting the rich changing colors of the season along with raku fired skulls, fiber monsters, harvest moon paintings, clay figures and more, Monday-Saturday, Oct. 4-31, Orchard Gallery of Fine Art, Fort Wayne, 436-0927
Indiana Bicentennial Exhibit — Artwork by 200 artists in the theme “Indiana: People, Place & Things”, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 12, Artlink Contemporary Art Gallery, Fort Wayne, 424-7195
IPFW Department of Fine Art Graduate Works — Mixed media pieces from recent IPFW graduates, Friday-Sunday thru Oct. 18, Garrett Museum of Art, Garrett, 704-5400
Marks of Intention — Abstract works by Nazar Harran, Monday-Saturday, Sept. 30-Nov. 15, Jennifer Ford Art, Fort Wayne, 740-1309
Master Prints — Diverse collection of prints acquired by the university over the past 15 years, Monday-Friday thru Dec. 22 (opening reception 6-9 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 5), Lupke Gallery, University of Saint Francis North Campus, Fort Wayne, 399-7999
Observations: Contemporary Landscapes by Thomas Hilty and Tamara Monk — Abstract figurative works in pastel and mixed media by Hilty and oil paintings by Monk, Monday-Friday thru Oct. 9, John P. Weatherhead Gallery and Goldfish Gallery, Mimi and Ian Rolland Art and Visual Communication Center, University of Saint Francis, Fort Wayne, 399-7999
Oil Painters of America Salon Show — Juried show featuring 300 paintings by Oil Painters of America members, Sept. 30-Oct. 29, (opening reception, 5:30-9 p.m., Friday, Sept. 30; paint out and demonstrations, Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 29-Oct. 1), Castle Gallery Fine Art, Fort Wayne, 426-6568
Outdoor Sculpture Invitational — Fifteen outdoor sculptures from regional artists, daily thru April 30, School of Creative Arts campus, University of Saint Francis North Campus, Fort Wayne, 399-7999
Paroxysm: A New Body of Work by Crystal Wagner — Large scale multi-textured sculptures, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 23, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, $5-$7 (members, free), 422-6467
Picasso, Braque and Leger: 20th Century Modern Masters — Paintings and prints from legendary artists, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 27, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, $5-$7 (members, free), 422-6467
Selections from the Haan Collection of Indiana Art — Works on loan from the Haan Mansion Museum in Lafayette, Indiana, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 23, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, $5-$7 (members, free), 422-6467
The Spirit of Innovation: American Abstraction, 1960 to 1975 — Abstract works from the museum’s permanent collection, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 16, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, $5-$7 (members, free), 422-6467
Sue Davis and Rebecca Dearing — Acrylics inspired by nature’s spirit rhythms and cycles of the earth and moon; fiber art dolls, including a new series of Endearing Hot Mamas, Monday-Saturday thru Sept. 30, Orchard Gallery of Fine Art, Fort Wayne, 436-0927
Theoplis Smith III — Works on display, daily thru Oct. 21, The Gallery at PranaYoga, Fort Wayne, 423-9642
Tom Martin: Everything and Nothing — Realist paintings resembling life and reality and focused on the effect money has on people, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 16, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, $5-$7 (members, free), 422-6467
University of Saint Francis Photo Club — Photographs from USF students, Tuesday-Sunday thru Oct. 12, Betty Fishman Gallery, Artlink Contemporary Art Gallery, Fort Wayne, 424-7195
Artlink Educational Programs — Art classes offered by Artlink Contemporary Art Gallery, dates and times vary, Artlink, Fort Wayne, fees vary, 424-7195
Fort Wayne Dance Collective Workshops — Workshops and classes for movement, dance, yoga and more offered by Fort Wayne Dance Collective, dates and times vary, Fort Wayne Dance Collective, Fort Wayne, fees vary, 424-6574
IPFW Community Arts Academy— Art, dance, music and theater classes for grades pre-K through 12 offered by IPFW College of Visual and Performing Arts, fees vary, 481-6977, www.ipfw.edu/caa
Sweetwater Academy of Music — Private lessons for a variety of instruments available from professional instructors, ongoing weekly lessons, Sweetwater Sound, Fort Wayne, call for pricing, 432-8176, academy.sweetwater.com
Team Trivia — Trivia for teams of up to 6 players, 7 p.m. Thursdays, Crazy Pinz/Coconutz, Fort Wayne, free, 969-9336