Nerd Night event planned for March 14

Published 6:30 pm Friday, March 3, 2023

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Organizer Benjamin Green releasing 3rd book in a trilogy

A night celebrating fandom is coming to downtown Austin.

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Nerd Night will be sending fans of nerd culture throughout downtown Austin to four businesses from 4-7 p.m. on Tuesday March 14, for games, trivia and more.

“It was one of those 3 a.m. thoughts,” said the event’s creator Benjamin Green. “It would be kind of cool if I could get some people on board. Have a horde of zombie nerds come out and take over downtown and do something nerdy.”

The event will send participants to collect stamps by performing specific activities at Ratatoskr Games (formerly Fett’s Hutt), Sweet Reads Books & Candy, Austin’s newest comic book store Hot Off the Press Comics and Coffee and the Coffee House on Main.

Cards for the stamps will be distributed by Green himself, who will be at Ratatoskr from 4-5 p.m. and then Sweet Reads from 5-7 p.m. However, once the cards are collected participants can start at any location they wish.

Benjamin Green’s Rimduum trilogy consists of “Forged in the Fallout,” “In Shadow of Silver,” and the newly completed “Wraiths and Raiders.” Photos provided

Green said he was unsure as to whether or not the event could get off the ground this year and because the event is in March there are, of course, concerns about the weather.

Still, he has high hopes that this is an event that can continue in years to come.

“I hope it grows. I hope we see the second annual Nerd Night,” he said.

As participants collect stamps from all four locations and Green himself, people can also collect prizes at the locations. Their names are then put into a drawing for grand prizes.

“I’m pretty excited for it actually and I think it can grow,” Green said.

Green himself has been immersed in the world of fantasy and science fiction for years and is the author of three self-published modern day fantasy novels built around the under-the-mountain world of Rimduum.

The Rimduum Trilogy, which focuses on teenage protagonist Clayson Spangler, tells the story of Spangler’s family and its  connections to dwarves living beneath America’s Rocky Mountains. The series features the first book “Forged in the Fallout,” its follow-up “In Shadows of Silver,” and the third book in the trilogy “Wraiths and Raiders.”

“I saw a bunch of modern urban novels that were focused on fey or elves,” Green said. “I keep watching for the same treatment with dwarves. No can do. It was kind of a ‘what if’ question.”

When he was younger, Green had slight connections with tabletop gaming, like Dungeons and Dragons,  but they were only passing connections. It wasn’t until he began picking up Star Wars novels prior to release of the prequel trilogies that his imagination began to take off, filled with detailed world-building and in- depth character development.

A social studies teacher at the Albert Lea ALC, Green has since spent the last six  years working on his Rimduum Trilogy, and is focused on reaching teen to younger boys in the world of Young Adult fantasy.

“My mission is to reach young men who maybe don’t read or who did read between nine and 12 and they kind of can’t find books that are interesting to them,” Green said. “Or they just have given up on reading or they find it boring.”

He also strives to include vulnerability in his stories, and connection to more family-centric issues.

“Things they might relate to in real life,” he said.

To that end, Green created his own publishing company — Loamseed Press — as a vehicle to publish his books.

At the same time, he is looking at creating an RPG card game centered around the metal magic of the Rimduum world as well as currently developing a board game called Max’s Cereal that is in the very early stages of development.

“It’s a straightforward kids game,” Green said. “It’s a big bowl full, as if you’ve spilled 17 boxes of cereal and you win by getting all the sugar you can get.”

Green also keeps busy by running a local writers group — the Austin Minnesota Writing Community on Facebook.

There is also a regular monthly meeting of the community, that features writers looking over each other’s work and offering suggestions.

“This is really the way to get to be a better writer,” Green said, explaining that half the meeting is devoted to writing and the other half is talking shop regarding writing.

And if that isn’t enough, there is also a meeting every third Saturday of the month at the Coffee House on Main from 8 a.m. to noon for those to take the time to write, talk about writing or simply check out to see if its right for them.

“Everybody is welcome,” Green said.

For more information on the Rimduum Trilogy, visit here. For more information on Nerd Night, visit here.