Wednesday, December 29, 2010

More Hoax Hunters, 2010 Last Call

Ken Cadaver. I just like saying the name, because it's so much fun, like something Kirby would have spawned back in his Black Magic days. The concept and name was kicking around in my head for awhile before Hoax Hunters, only I didn't quite know what to do with him, or how to flesh him out. But when Steve Seeley and I started building the foundations of Hoax Hunters, Ken became a natural fit.

What has since developed is, to me, a pretty rich and round character. Prior to Hoax Hunters, Ken was a gimmick, a clever hook. But when we started really digging into Hoax Hunters, one of the main things I promised myself was to make sure each character was as complete and unique as possible--I didn't want to fall in the trap of relying on the uniqueness of the story alone.

With this in mind, Ken became a character with a strong character arc behind him. Seeing that we only have two pages a month to work with, and a very specific story to tell, we won't get much of Ken's history. But it's there. And who knows, if all goes well, Hoax Hunters may grow and give Steve, JM, Jim, and me the opportunities to tell the stories we already have in mind.

What I can say about Ken is this: he's a living corpse. He plays one on television, but the truth is that, for real, he died many, many years ago. Then he came back. Ken is a somewhat decayed, reanimated scientist with a very...special power.

That's all I can give for now!

And with that, it's time to close out 2010. It's really great to end the year with a preview of the excitement that awaits in 2011--right around the corner, too! Remember, Hack/Slash #1 comes out Feb. 9, and that's where you can catch the first part of Hoax Hunters!

The year, on a whole, has been a roller coaster, to say the least. It started with massive malfunctions and a legal throwdown with Insomnia Publications, which aged me 5 years in 5 months. That time was full of lows and disappointments and stress. Everything I had invested myself in, creatively, was slipping away right before my eyes. Quarantined held hostage, Terminus in limbo.

So I did what I normally do--put my head down and worked until I fell asleep at my desk or was dragged away from it. And I had some good luck along the way, along with some help from very great friends. And things turned around--Markosia picked up Quarantined, JM started work on Terminus, Hoax Hunters quickly became a reality.

Right now, things are looking good for 2011. Hoax Hunters is on the way; Quarantined drops in the spring; Terminus is nearly ready to be shown to publishers; and soon, I'll have some super-cool news to share on Reincar(Nate). And there's also some new projects I'm working on. Like I said--I'm always working.

To everyone that has read this blog and supported my work, sincerest thanks. Hope you have a great new year!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Hoax Hunters, Hack/Slash, and Image Comics!

For what it's worth, in my mind, I have the coolest job ever. Seriously, I get to work with amazing people and make comic books. And now, I have a brand-new, mind-blowing project to preview right here, right now.

Thanks to the good graces of Tim Seeley (what you’ve heard is true—and don’t let Tim fool you—he is the nicest man in America), I’m part of a team behind a creator-owned series that will be backing up Hack/Slash starting in February.

Since I like the sound of it so much, I’m going to say it again: I’m co-writing an ongoing series that will appear in the pages of Hack/Slash, a series I’ve been reading for years.

My brain still isn’t quite able to wrap around all of this.

But that’s just the beginning. Not only do I get to have my work appear in one of the best continuing series running, but I get to so with a great team. I’m co-writing/creating with my friend Steve Seeley, while JM Ringuet, my Terminus collaborator, is handling the art. And Jim Campbell, letter extraordinaire, is tackling lettering duties.

Okay, so onto the actual series, titled Hoax Hunters. It’s an amalgamation of ideas Steve and I have been sitting on for a while now, some loose concepts that may have not entirely worked on their own. But smashed together and developed, and I think what you get is something that’s bizarre and fun—we’re playing homage to a lot of the pulp, sci-fi, and horror stories we both love, yet retaining our own distinct fictional world.

For the time being, I can’t reveal too much about the plot or our plan for this first arc; I can say it’ll definitely be worth the price of admission, which is picking up the first issue of the re-launched Hack/Slash (which should be on your pull list anyway).

What I can reveal is some art. Posted above is the first of JM’s character sketches, this one for Regan. Regan is a woman with a past that involves childhood stardom, witchcraft, and an exorcism. Maybe that gives an indication of the tone of our story.

I’ll have more previews in the coming weeks—and reminders on when to pick up Hack/Slash #1, featuring Hoax Hunters!

(Sorry, I had to throw that out one more time.)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Remember the Journalism Part?

In the header to this site, it does say "and journalism..."

With all the comic work I've been swamped with over the past year or so, my freelance journalism has had to be put on the back burner, unfortunately. But, I've managed to have two pieces published this week, one with Wired and the other with Gapers Block.

The Wired piece is on indie comics and their approach to digital publishing. It focuses on what Kris Simon is doing with her brand-new site Comics Pipeline, and how Archaia (one of my favorite comic publishers) has incorporated digital technologies into their publishing model.

The Gapers Block article is about the Chicago toy scene and throws a spotlight line Ben Spencer and his first toy, the amazing Galaxxor, the Shawnimals line, and of course, Rotofugi.

Speaking of Gapers Block, I should also mention that I had a piece post there about a month ago, this one more political in nature. It's on the upcoming mayoral election here in Chicago, and the progressive movement working against the long-established machine politics.

And that's it for now. I have another tentative assignment later this winter, but nothing lined up for the time being.