About the Site
The Troll Mystic site is dedicated to creativity and imagination, especially in the areas of fiction, old-school role playing, digital art and idea generation. You may find the occasional post about software engineering or contra dance or whatever else fires up my brain cells.
The domains eposic.org, eposic.com and eposic.net all resolve to the trollmystic.com domain. If you were looking for any of those domains, you’re in the right place.
Hi, I’m Michael K. Eidson and I’m responsible for the craziness here. I grew up and went to a 12-year public school in Macks Creek, Missouri. During that time I won dozens of scholastic achievement awards and eventually graduated as valedictorian of my high school senior class. I went to college in Missouri and earned a comprehensive BS in Mathematics, followed by a MS in Applied Mathematics.
After college, my career started with the National Security Agency at Fort Meade, Maryland. After almost 20 years there, first as a civilian and then as a contractor, my wife and I moved to Florida to be near her aging mother. We’re still in Florida, about a 20-minute drive from each of the theme parks: SeaWorld, Universal and Walt Disney World.
Over the past 30+ years, I’ve written code for the US Intelligence community and military, the Veterans Administration, the CDC, Disney and others. I love what I do for a living, but I need other outlets for my creativity. I can’t only do what other people want me to do all the time. And I’m not happy only doing software.
I’ve enjoyed writing ever since I learned how. I sold my first piece of writing, a paragraph published in Argosy magazine for which I received $5.00, when I was about twelve. I’ve written non-fiction and fiction, including works in the genres of action/adventure, western, mystery, science fiction, fantasy and other speculative fiction subgenres. My early works were all hand-written, before I ever knew what a computer was, and sit in boxes in my closet. I have reams and reams of notes and ideas and outlines, some handwritten and some typed. Some of my notes are for stories, some for role playing game adventures or supplements, some for standalone games or puzzles. Some of these notes have found their way into larger works, most of which I’ve never felt were good enough to publish.
Along the way, I have managed to publish a few works and even receive money for a few of them. In 2008 I was considering a stint as an indie publisher and started Eposic Diversions LLC. As my first effort with the LLC, I edited and published a speculative fiction anthology entitled The Book of Exodi. It’s now out of print; sorry. (I do have a few copies at home, if you’re really interested.) The anthology included stories from some names you might recognize, including Harry Turtledove and Ken St Andre. It was a real pleasure and honor working with them and all of the other authors and artists who contributed to that anthology. But I discovered quickly that my mind was not one for business, so I dissolved the LLC. Since then I’ve registered the name Eposic as a DBA for myself, but I have no plans to publish more anthologies of works by other authors.
In 2012, I decided to write my debut novel. I’ve focused on that, working to make it publishable. Whenever I need a break from the novel, I don’t work on other writing projects, aside from the occasional blog post, but dabble with digital art instead, so that I won’t get derailed from the novel. I’m undecided at this point as to whether I will self-publish or try to go the traditional publishing route. There are pros and cons to either approach.
My Major Influences
Authors: Michael Moorcock, Roger Zelazny, Isaac Asimov, Fritz Leiber, Piers Anthony, Jack Vance, J.R.R. Tolkien, Robert Silverberg, Lewis Carroll, L. Frank Baum, Aldous Huxley, Jonathan Swift, Mark Twain, Rudyard Kipling, Robert Louis Stevenson, Jack London, Louisa May Alcott, Ursula K. Le Guin, Harry Turtledove, Ken St. Andre, Michael Stackpole, Gary Gygax, Steve Jackson (both of them), James Schannep, Coyote Kishpaugh, Lauren Scharhag, Christina Lea, Kelley Armstrong, T. A. Pratt, Kyra Dune, Rebecca Hamilton, Kim Vandervort, Kim Harrison, Patricia Briggs
Movies/Series: Terminator (and most other Arnold movies); Resident Evil; James Bond/007; Underworld; Star Wars; Star Trek; Alien; Predator; Final Destination; The Matrix; Tomb Raider; Transporter; A Nightmare on Elm Street; I Know What You Did Last Summer; Monty Python and the Holy Grail; Life of Brian; Blazing Saddles; Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure; Monkeybone; Sucker Punch; Aeon Flux; Ultraviolet; Earthsea; The Forgotten; Run Lola Run; Point of No Return; The Craft; The Lost Boys; Mean Girls; I Know Who Killed Me; Memento; The Grudge; House of 1000 Corpses; Angel Heart; The Cell; and pretty much any movie that stars Johnny Depp, Jessica Alba, Christina Ricci or Winona Ryder
TV Shows: Dark Angel, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Avengers, Dr. Who, Red Dwarf, Monty Python’s Flying Circus, Mr. Bean, Black Adder, One Foot in the Grave, Doc Martin, Men Behaving Badly, My Family, Danger Mouse, The Pink Panther, Bugs Bunny, Rocky and Bullwinkle, Gunsmoke, Bonanza, Charlie’s Angels, Anne of Green Gables, Dallas, The Dukes of Hazzard, The Incredible Hulk, The Twilight Zone, Star Trek, Quantum Leap, The X-Files, Firefly, Threshold, Fringe, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Survivor, American Idol, CSI:, Medium, Ghost Whisperer, Under the Dome, Big Bang Theory, Downton Abbey, Brain Dead, MADtv, Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Blue Bloods.
Musical Acts: Heart, Grimes, Pillowfight, Fefe Dobson, Rihanna, Lana Del Rey, Marina and the Diamonds, Meg Myers, ZZ Ward, Demi Lovato, The Pretty Reckless, The Ting Tings, machineheart, Mya, Mandy Moore, The Donnas, Janet Jackson, Jewel, Fiona Apple, No Doubt, Garbage, Halestorm, Dragonette, Nancy Sinatra, Tanya Tucker, Kid Sister, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Alexx Calise, Mazzy Star, Fleetwood Mac, Alannah Myles, Alanis Morissette, Kerli, Sia, Taylor Swift, The Pierces, Tegan and Sara, Judy and Mary, Yuki, Hitomi, Goldfrapp, Boomkat, Otep, In This Moment, Type O Negative, Rob Zombie, Guns N’ Roses, War, Waylon Jennings, David Allan Coe, Stealers Wheel, Steely Dan, The Doobie Brothers, The Isley Brothers, The Temptations, Stevie Wonder, ELO, Styx, Van Halen (original lineup), ZZ Top, The B-52’s, Soundgarden, Bee Gees, Santana, Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Elton John, David Bowie, The Beatles (the group and also their solo acts following their breakup), Alice Cooper, Billy Idol, Duran Duran, Dr. John, Ohio Players.
Role Playing Games: Tunnels and Trolls; Dungeons and Dragons (and derivatives, including Peryton); GURPS; Fudge; The Fantasy Trip; RuneQuest; Amber; Traveller; Champions; Everway; Paranoia; Stormbringer; Call of Cthulu; Dark Conspiracy; Star Wars; Shadowrun; TORG; Big Eyes, Small Mouth; TAG (now called Red Bat)
Other Games: Magic the Gathering, Spades, Cosmic Encounters, Talisman, Risk, Diplomacy, Monopoly, The Game of Life, Chess, Checkers, Chinese Checkers