The phases of creation for the Okal Rel Universe (ORU) are:
Childhood (? to c. 1964). My sister, Holly, was my most important and enduring playmate, dating back as far as I can remember, although neighborhood friends took part as well. Stories played out over multiple sessions or even years. Not ORU exactly, but adventure-based, heroic tales.
Role play (c. 1964 - 1976). Barbie dolls featured. Also live role play and early "word gaming" with best-friend Kathy Perrault. This intense phase saw ORU beginnings including names like Gelion, Gelack and Barmi II. Amel and Horth's characters started to form in other characters who have since disappeared. the role play period stretched from late elementary school through grade 12. Kathy grew up faster than me and we lost touch after grad.
Word gaming with Alison. (1976 - c. 2008). Alison Sinclair and I met in first year university in a computer class. Our fictional worlds got mixed up in each other. She published a novel long before me, and was the reason we connected with Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy for the publication of Throne Price in the early 2000s. Alison is especially important to the characters Erien and Mira as well as "running" many others in our word-gaming exchanges over the decades we collaborated. (See legacy site article Flying Electrons)
Traditionally published (1999 - 2015). The main publisher of the Okal Rel Universe, in the traditional model of publishing, was Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing under owner Brian Hades. ORU stories were also published, overlapping with the Edge period, by Windstorm Creative in the U.S. In 2013 Edge wanted out. Lynda bought the rights for the ORU from Edge over a span of 3 years, during which time Brian agreed to finish publication of the 10-novel saga. In heyday of this period, Edge also re-released works originally published by Windstorm, new novellas and short story collections by multiple authors in the Opus series.
Reality Skimming Press - traditional (2015-2017). A short phase in which Reality Skimming Press existed as a traditional (very small) press in parallel with me holding down both fulltime and parttime jobs while suffering a series of major life blows, including two deaths. Any successes achieved were owed more to collaborator Ellen Michelle than myself. Any mess ups were all my own.
Hiatus (2017 - 2021). Shock and withdrawal with a few splutters here and there. 'nough said.
Reality Skimming (2021 - ?). You are here.