Magic the Gathering cards, custom art by Dan Frazier

*Mini spoiler: The picture of what this entire post is about is at the very bottom of the blog. 🙂

Now let me tell you a story. Once upon a time in the past, after a mild-mannered future indie fantasy author returned home from Army training, he (yes, I am talking about me) discovered that his well-meaning mother had thrown away some of his Magic the Gathering card collection.
Included within the shoebox that got tossed were some of the most valuable MtG cards ever printed, like moxen from the “Power 9.”

For those who don’t know what the hell I’m talking about, Magic the Gathering is an extremely popular collectible card game that came out in the early/mid 90’s, and the original cards are some of the most valuable collectibles in the world now. For example, “Alpha” (the first printing) Black Lotus cards in good shape go for 6 figures now.

Well, in those first sets of MTG, there were the “Power 9,” largely considered some of the most powerful MtG cards ever created. In fact, most of them are banned in most formats now, but they are still massively notable in geek culture. The price of these cards just keep going up year over year.

The “Moxen,” or the mox set, were artifacts that give mana (resources) in the game and they were originally painted by Dan Frazier. Dan Frazier is also known for the original cover of Vampire: The Masquerade RPG before it was replaced with a rose. He has done lots of work for Wizards of the Coast with art for MtG cards. He’s also done D&D work with the Book of Artifacts and Races of the Dragon.

Dan Frazier has done plenty of more contemporary work, but he’s definitely an OG of fantasy art.

So you can imagine how sad I was/am that what would have been like…a small fortune of awesome cards got thrown away. I can’t be too mad, because I have been broke enough in my past, the odds of still having any of those cards would probably be nil, but I still have had a mox-shaped hole in my heart for a long time.

Well, now the wound has been healed, and in a major way.

I commissioned Dan Frazier to make me a full set of moxes (Mox Ruby, Mox Jet, Mox Pearl, Mox Sapphire, and Mox Emerald) on blank MtG Championship cards…

But I sprang for something a little more exotic…and dare I say, awesome.

*trumpet music*

I now have a hand-painted (by Dan Frazier) MtG proxy card depicting a Dolos Orb. Yes, a Dolos orb.

The text reads:


Effects Vary

Focus on the Magic School of your choice before sleep

Folks, I think this is one of the coolest things that I own now. I plan to take this card with me in the future if/when I do any signings at conventions in case anyone wants to have a picture taken with it.

I understand that not everyone will relate to how cool this is to me and will be to some others. Just know that this was like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I feel like I have now meaningfully connected my geeky past during my childhood, to my geeeky present as a full time fantasy author.

Thank you for listening to my story. Being an author can be a lot of fun, but it is stuff like this that really helps me get through crappy years like most of us had in 2020.

…and thank you to my readers who make all of this possible.


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