Monday, August 18, 2014

Run for cover



Defiant: The Legend of Brithnoth now has a cover (above, click to enlarge), courtesy of Dan Bell and Aljosa Tomic.

The book itself is very close to being finished. I'm currently proofreading all 84 story pages while artist Dan busies himself designing various bits of backmatter.

Proofing a story is, I think, one of the most important parts of the creative process (but, then, as a professional proofreader and sub editor, I would say that). Having one last thorough read through what you've created is crucial because you almost always identify one or two things that haven't quite worked. Not just typos but maybe the odd scene in which the art and dialogue don't mesh correctly, a vital detail that has been underplayed, a misplaced speech balloon...

It will hopefully hit Previews before the end of the year and see actual publication through Time Bomb Comics early in 2015. We're also discussing launching it at one of the UK's many comic conventions but nothing has been confirmed as yet. More details as and when I have them...

* On the subject of Time Bomb Comics, they currently have a book out called Longship, by Lawrence Rider and Rebecca Teall. It's a clever and really quite touching tale of a Viking boat, a father and son, and a funeral. You really should buy it. Drop them a line at: sales@timebombcomics.com or order the book through your local comic shop.

* And while I'm dishing out plugs, Defiant colourist Aljosa Tomic worked on the most recent issue of Veil (#4), by Greg Rucka and Toni Fejzula, through Dark Horse. It's a terrific and unusual supernatural mini-series from Lazarus and Queen and Country writer Rucka so well worth picking up.


Thursday, May 22, 2014

Digital Bullet

HERO KILLERS - the Eagle Award-winning one-shot I did with Marvel artist Declan Shalvey - is now on ComiXology. You can buy it here for the very reasonable sum of 99c/69p. I now intend to submit a few of the other Moonface Press titles, starting with Blood Psi.

* DEFIANT! THE LEGEND OF BRITHNOTH is now about one-third coloured and - thanks to the excellent Aljosa Tomic - is looking very good indeed. I've also managed to get permission to use a fine translation of the original Battle of Maldon poem in the book which is great news. 

The plan as it stands is to bring Defiant! out early next year so Time Bomb Comics publisher Steve Tanner has a chance to submit it to Diamond and to get a bit of publicity going ahead of its release.

Here is one of the coloured pages; art by Dan Bell...

* I have two other major things I'm working on - one a graphic novel with publisher contracts already signed, the other a very intriguing webcomic with a name artist whose brilliance intimidates the hell out of me. Unfortunately I can't say anything about them until I'm given the green light to do so. Soon, though, hopefully...

* What else? Need to get on with writing more Tim Skinner very soon. It's slipped down the schedule a bit as other stuff has elbowed it out of the way... artist Jim Lavery and I have collaborated on a fun short story which has found a home in a very exciting anthology. I'm really proud of it, actually, probably the best short story I've written since... ever. Aljosa (again) and Nikki Foxrobot have turned in sterling work on the colours and letters for it too.

* I've reached that part of the year where I need to rush to get through as much stuff as possible before the kids break up for the summer. I love them both dearly but struggle to get any writing done when they're around, and there are deadlines I simply can't leave hanging until September. I really don't know how proper professional writers and artists cope with this stuff. I mean, I can't just decamp to a hotel for six weeks, can I? Hmmm...

* Finally, I now have a tumblr page here. At the moment I'm really just using it as a second home for this blog but plan to do a bit more with it soon. Feel free to follow me there, if you must...


Monday, March 17, 2014

Talk is cheap

HAVE I really not updated this blog since the middle of November 2013? Yes, that's exactly what has happened. How embarrassing.

It isn't that I haven't had a lot going on, because I have - bloody loads, actually. I am, however, trying to avoid talking about projects until something actually, properly concrete exists. Like finished pages, printed issues, viewable webcomics... that kind of thing. Because I've noticed that I come on here and jabber on about what I'm up to and then, more often than not, bugger all ever comes of it.

There are also things I won't talk about because I don't want to jinx them - after this morning, one thing in particular...

A few projects I will mention though, purely because they seem a bit more concrete than most of the half-arsed, airy-fairy nonsense I blather on about.

Firstly, I've finished writing the first episode of Tim Skinner: Retconned for Ruairi Coleman to draw. The idea - at least as it stands - is that we will finish all four episodes before the first one goes live and that the episodes will appear weekly for a month later in the year (September is favourite right now). I'm very happy with the first episode and had forgotten just how much fun it is to write Skinner.

I've also penned a one-shot for artist Henry Simon to illustrate. It's a pulpy sci-fi story featuring motorcycle gangs that runs to 28 pages. There's also a seven-page short story for artist Jim Lavery. I'm really proud of this one, actually, and I'll be going all out to get it into a decent anthology.

Thing is, though, I've mentioned those three projects and none of them actually properly exists yet. Any one of them could go tits up tomorrow, making me look foolish... again.

So, let me turn my attention to Defiant! The Legend of Brithnoth, which is becoming more and more real with every passing week. Artist Dan Bell only has a few pages and the odd panel revision to go before pencils and inks on the book are finished. I suspect Dan will treat himself to a stiff drink when it's all done. Then it's just the colouring and lettering, the cover and backmatter to sort out. Easy.

There's other stuff - stuff I'm pitching, stuff I'm struggling to find reliable artists for... the usual. I'll talk about it when and if... or probably not at all.


Monday, November 18, 2013

Cut 'n' thrust



I finished writing Defiant! The Legend of Brithnoth a couple of months ago and artist Dan Bell is just under two-thirds of the way through drawing it. It feels like we've been working on it forever and there's still a long way to go (colouring and lettering for a start), but I'm confident it will still see the light of day towards the end of next year – Time Bomb Comics' schedule permitting of course...

Dan's been a pleasure to work with and his stuff has just got better and better the further into the book he has gone (see a recent page above). He's always happy to take a second look at certain pages and panels when I've asked him to and, likewise, I've valued his opinions when it comes to what works and what doesn't in the script. We're a good team, I think, and hope we do more stuff together in the future.

And while I'm talking about Dan, he has a couple of stories in the recently-released British Showcase Anthology graphic novel (published by Markosia). More details here: www.markosia.com/titles/british-showcase-anthology

He will also be at Thought Bubble, in Leeds, this weekend, where you can buy copies of his excellent comics The Goose and Psircus.

* Next up for me, two new projects (which aren't actually new at all). The first is a one-shot called Razorsnakes for R-Comics, with artist Henry Simon. It was originally going to be a longer 'graphic novella' type thing but I've been keen to have a crack at a couple of shorter, sharper stories in the mould of Hero Killers and Blood Psi. It's only 26 pages of actual story so I'm going to be editing down and refining my original idea and hoping it still works. I first had the idea for Razorsnakes five or six years ago and always planned to do something with it. Anyway, its time has finally come...

The second is the Tim Skinner: Retconned webcomic. I've been holding off starting on this because I really wanted to clear my schedule to get it right. I've also spent the last few months just thinking - soaking up all the comics silliness I can find and generally getting myself into maximum snark mode. Maximum snark mode has now been achieved...

* Once those are out of the way, I shall start writing Nix. I produced 11 pages of script earlier in the year for a pitch sample, but now must get cracking on the whole 80+ page story. I've found a publisher and have been working with an editor to get the story absolutely right. The only recent drawback is that the original artist has decided to leave the project (to pursue a lifelong dream to ink Superboy. Or something).

As a result, I'm looking for a new artist (when aren't I?) so if anyone fancies having a crack at a sci-fi black comedy in which a deranged time traveller has a threesome with JFK and Marilyn, before doing something unspeakable to Idi Amin, feel free to drop me a line at: andywinter1@gmail.com

* I was really hoping to make it up to Thought Bubble for the first time this weekend but life, it seems, has made other plans yet again. I've only actually managed one comics con this year (the London Super Comic Con) which is almost certainly my worst showing ever. It's something that needs to change, especially as there's a good chance I'll finally have some new stuff published next year.

If you are lucky enough to be going to TB, be sure to check out Time Bomb Comics (their new Squadron of the Screaming Damned book looks fantastic) and Borderline Press (Dennis Wojda's excellent 566 Frames and the Zombre anthology are both worth a look).

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Tim Skinner: Retconned


Here's the first teaser image for the Tim Skinner: Retconned webcomic by artist Ruairi Coleman and myself (click to enlarge). It will be released online in three-four parts sometime in the first half of next year.

Ruairi's a terrific artist - you may have seen his work on Uproar Comics' award-winning Zombies Hi series - and you can check out his blog here: http://swinginglead.blogspot.co.uk

Monday, September 2, 2013

Douglas Adams on meth


SUMMER'S over, the kids are back at school and that means I can put my feet up and watch one of the stack of DVDs that have been sat gathering dust under the TV. Oh, except that I can't do that because I have a shit-ton of writing work to catch up on. A shit-ton of writing work I should have been doing over the summer but couldn't because of the kids, or rather the noise they make. All the time. Even when they are supposedly in bed. 

In some ways, the lack of actual writing has been a good thing because I've been able to properly recharge my mental batteries. Which is just as well because I really have to hit the ground running today, right now, this minute.

Work I need to attack includes...

* One last pass through the final third of Defiant! The Legend of Brithnoth. (I say 'one last pass' when there will be several dozen more passes until I am 100 per cent happy with it).
* A lengthy scene-by-scene breakdown for the editor working with me on Nix. Then, eventually, a script.
* A 10-page sample script for Hushers, the project I'm working on with artist pal Manuela.
* Detailed – but punchy – plot synopses for four more projects I'm going to be pitching around towards the end of the year. An international smorgasbord of brilliant artists has been busy producing sample art pages for these. 
* Writing issue #2 of The Good Ship Otzi, the 'Douglas Adams on meth' space opera I'm doing for R-Comics. The artist hasn't started drawing issue #1 yet so I have wriggle room here.
* Web comics, including new Tim Skinner (teaser image on the way very soon), and a bizarro horror thing I'm doing with artist Nick Wright.

That little lot should take me up to Christmas (and probably beyond). I'd better get on with it all then...

Monday, August 26, 2013

Hushers




HERE are a couple of pics from a project set in Victorian London I've been working on with artist Manuela Lebrino. It's called Hushers and is something very different from what I've done before. I'll post more of Manuela's lovely art on here soon.

* IN other news, Defiant! The Legend of Brithnoth is pretty much finished writing-wise. I have been going over and over the last third of the script, though, ensuring it all works. One plot point took me months to get right but I think I nailed it in the end. Dan Bell is 30+ pages into the art now. Look for the book at some point next year from Time Bomb Comics.

* I THINK we may have found a publisher for Nix. Still early days but I've just started work with an editor on it and will confirm things as soon as I am able.