A Beginning of Sorts

Willkommen wondrous patrons! I’m going to be trying out a weird format for the daily posts going up straight through to the weekend. Gaze upon it’s spender and weep.

01. SUDDENLY

Another Tuesday, another shipment to process so that all the good folks of Edmonton can get their hands on brand new comics tomorrow. This week, I’m going broke having pre-ordered a copy of the witzend collection from Fantagraphics – a beautiful two volume set collecting Wally Wood’s self published magazine of the same name. The book is brimming with beautiful art from brilliant cartoonists, and I can’t wait to dive into that chunk of comics history.

In a few short minutes, I’ll be talking about more of this week’s releases over at Comics! The Blog where you’ll be able to find out more about this week’s signature releases, including my pick of the week.

02. PREVIOUSLY

Yesterday my post about Brain Wood taking over Moon Knight with artist Greg Smallwood went up over at Comics Beat. As the unofficial comics retail correspondent over there, it doesn’t concern itself too much with straight marketing efforts, and tackles the question of how to order comics when, say, one of the creators has allegedly done something you find a bit repellant. It was a tough piece to write, but that’s the gig!

Also of note? Monday’s Um, Actually column went up at C!TB wherein James and I talked weddings and lesser known creative gems from established greats in the comic book industry – among other things.

03. MEANWHILE

Patreon is a thing that I’m definitely going to explore in the next little while, both as a patron and maybe one day, as a creator. I’ve yet to do a ton of digging into it, but what I’m loving the most about it is the idea that web comic creators can suddenly get paid for their work regularly, having a fund to work from instead of living so close to the bone. Again, I’ll have to do a bit more digging to hit on all the exact ins and outs, but until then, I’m going to direct you to the Patreon that Canaan Grall is running for Max Overacts – a well deserving project and creator.

04. SOMETIME! IN THE FUTURE!

I’m stretching a bit with that title placard. I need something short and comic book-y that works to describe what’s to come. In the days to come, I’m hoping to drop a bit of fiction on this website. That’s a promise I’ve made several times to myself and others, but have yet to keep – so I’m forcing my own hand. One story, told in fragments of 100 words or less, over however many days. At the end of the story, I’m going to collect the whole thing, and publish two versions – the daily exercise, and a polished, finished version. This may fall apart completely.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you this:

05. ELSEWHERE

Eleanor sits at the piano and places her fingers on the keys. She can still feel his bones in the old piano.

The Short Break and The Long Haul

Of course, I missed updating this site for almost the whole of last week. The goal – one I never said out pound until this point – is to have a hub where you can always find me. My work might be scattered everywhere, but if you come to this place, you should be able to find nearly all of it – or at least the pieces of note. Eventually, I’d like to run a bit of original fiction here as well, but… well, deadlines sure are fun, aren’t they? We’ll see. As for what happened last week…

  • I wrote a couple of pieces for Comics Beat last week, but only one of them saw print, as we continue to push through the part where the training wheels are required. As soon as I’m all up on the ins-and-outs, things should be happening like clockwork.
  • Oh, the piece? It’s a take on those Fantastic Four rumours – the ones that say Marvel is going to cancel the ongoing just to spite Fox, who owns the movie rights for the team. My supposition is that there’s a lot of truth in the team disappearing from the Marvel landscape for a while – but I can bet you anything it’s in service of a big return the month before the new movie hits.
  • Over at Comics! The Blog, we talked to writer Curt Pires about Pop, a brand new mini-series he has coming out from Dark Horse this August. It’s an interview that takes several dark turns, so if you’re not into laughing at soul-shattering horribleness, then… maybe skip the podcast and buy Pop anyway. I’ve already given the first issue a read, and damn, it is worth it. But more on that later.
  • This weekend, Danica and I went to Edmonton’s first ever International Cat Fest and… well, it was a ton of fun! Danica volunteered for the day, while I just hung out and drank in ALL THE CATS COMMA CONSUMING THEIR POWER ALL THE POWER and it was a lot of fun. All told, over 600 people made their way through the door, and well over $8000 was raised for the Humane Society.

And that’s all I’m in the mood for this lovely Monday morning. With any luck, you’ll be seeing my next Comics Beat piece today – a little ditty about Brian Wood, Moon Knight, and the morality of comic purchasing when you’re a business.

Where You’re From, Where You’re Going.

Hello Monday. You are dumb. Just the dumbest. Let’s hit the bullet points.

  • Last night, I finally started parsing out my feelings on Southern Bastards. It’s a brilliant book that’s a joy and a pain to read for the reasons I talk about here. The piece got some great response, which is weird. Maybe one day, I’ll learn to take a compliment.
  • Today’s Um, Actually featured Scott Williams asking a us questions about the X-Men, which we gladly answered. James was even cordial!
  • Oh, the thing I told my family I didn’t have time to do? I ended up doing it. It was… fun. Chances of them reading this? Eh, probably one in a million. BLOG ANGST!
  • In the next day or two, I should have another article up at Comics Beat, this time about the dumb Fantastic Four rumours that have been going around, and what they might really mean.

Aaaaand that’s about it for this round. Stay tuned for some interesting information about The Future later this week.

Saving the Comics Industry, One Beer At A Time

And then there was Friday. A pretty fantastic meeting got in the way of the daily wrap up for yesterday, so with a fuzzy head, I attack the computer on Saturday morning. Because, you know, I can’t disappoint my ones of readers.

  • My second article at Comics Beat was a piece about Bob Wayne, and how his retirement from DC Comics might effect the comic book industry. Bob was instrumental in setting up the direct market, such as it exists today, and regardless of what’s to come, the industry will be lesser without him in it. Bonus note: the article resulted in a very welcomed and interesting e-mail that I’m still smiling over. I love this work.
  • This week’s second Um, Actually went up at Comics! The Blog with James’ and my thoughts on binge entertainment, X-Men starting points and WWE finishers and catch phrases.
  • Danica has her Best of the Week wrap up happening over at Live Within Your Space, where she talks about what she’s been reading and thinking about lately. She’s also kind enough to mention the two articles I had up at Comics Beat, which was pretty swell of her.
  • My good friend Devin R. Bruce hit C!TB with a brand new instalment of This Column Has Seven Days. It’s probably one of the favourite things we publish each week, and that’s because I don’t care much for my writing, and I also I think it will be funny to see James get all huffy about that comment. Also, Devin is an extremely talented writer, as well as pop culture guru. So, there’s that.
  • While Thursday ended with a whimper and a phone call that crushed my spirit (nope, not talking about it), yesterday ended with an overwhelming sense of potential and joy. Comics and media writer Andrew Foley and I decided it was high time to have another of our strange comic summits over beers, and what resulted was a night where we single handedly saved the comic’s industry from itself. Now if you’ll excuse me, where is the store where you can exchange nerd creed for actual, tangible power. I have a thing I need to accomplish.

And now, comes the weekend. I managed to hit all my deadlines last week, and I plan on continuing to do so for a long, long time to come. It really feels as though I’m on the cusp of some great times. Some hard times, but some great times nonetheless. Talk with you soon.

Orders and Disorders

Whelp, that certainly was a day.

For those keeping score at home, today was the day my final orders for DC’s latest round of lenticular covers were due (yeah, I linked the article again. Whatever, I’m proud), as well as my orders for all of July’s product in general. Suffice to say, the day proceeded at a bit of a run, and hasn’t quite let up. That said, things still happened, as they always do! Let’s hit the high points.

  • Not half an hour ago, I wrote about Knuckleheadsa great comedic superhero book from Monkeybrain that you should all be reading.  Issues are just a scant 99 cents on the Wizard’s Comics digital storefront – why not try a few?
  • The newest Doctor Whooch is up, wherein Danica is surly until she’s not. We have so much fun doing these you guys. So much fun. You can hit up the episode, complete with show notes over at Comics! The Blog as per usual, or download it on iTunes. Your choice!
  • Meanwhile, Danica’s post at Live Within Your Space featured some promises, and a request for requests and questions. She’s a fount of information, if you have any organizing or decorating questions, so please, hit her up for info!
  • I haven’t had a chance to read Mark Waid and Barry Kitson’s return to Empire yet, and it’s driving me crazy. I mean, I only have myself to blame, but still. Get on it, Brandon. (BTW – Empire is one of the strongest books Mark Waid has written, all about a Doctor Doom type who has conquered the earth, and now has to combat threats from within.)
  • My second post at Comics Beat should be going up tomorrow – this one about the impending departure of Bob Wayne, and how it might effect the comic book industry for the worse. Uplifting stuff, right? Anyway, I’m thinking the next thing I work on might be a general piece on how retailers don’t want to work antagonistically with publishers, but how that sort of just… happens – like with DC’s lenticular covers. Both sides are working towards the same goal – selling more comics – but it can’t be done without both sides being serviced. I’m gonna’ stop there before I write the whole damn thing right now.
  • I said “no” to a project a family member asked me to do today. It was hard, and I have a feeling there will be repercussions, but time and circumstance didn’t allow. They usually don’t, but I also usually try to squeeze out time, and end up letting certain things suffer as a result. As it happens, I’m really trying to get on top of being a deadline guy. You have to if you want to do some freelance stuff, because nobody’s going to trust you if you can’t hit your deadlines, so… yeah. I’m bargaining with myself right now. I know I did a good thing for me, and that I have to be selfish sometimes but… yeah. Anyway. Articles I wrote will be up tomorrow. Yay!

And that’s the day! We’ll talk again tomorrow, nerds!

 

 

BIG NEWS and Other Ephemera

Another new comic book day comes to a close, and as usual, I am exhausted. Wednesday’s I usually work the full shift, a long 10-8, putting comics into the hands of people who just can’t wait another day to get their new comic fix – and that’s always a lot of fun… until I finally stop moving and realize just how tired I am.

Anyway, today was pretty cool for another great reason: my first article went up over at Comics Beat today! I’m pretty excited about this. Comics Beat is ran by Heidi MacDonald, who has been working in and around the industry for years. I haven’t told her this, but I was just a kid when she started editing the comic section in Disney Adventures magazine. She was the person who introduced me – and a lot of people my age – the series Bone, which Jeff Smith had been publishing in black and white at the time. Heidi somehow (I don’t know the details) brokered a situation where the story appeared in DA for several issues, going right up to the end of the first volume – and even squeezed out a story that Jeff Smith made specifically for DA as well! Now, of course, you can find Bone in all of your local bookstores and comic shops, as it’s one of the most popular series out there for folks of all ages. So yeah. Exciting!

…oh right, what was my piece about? Whelp, DC is doing another round of lenticular covers this year, and I pitched a piece that would go over the nightmare that occurred during the last time they tried this stunt, and how it compared to this new round. I think I did a pretty good job. Even got a hater in the comments, which oddly makes me feel good!

As for the rest of the day…

  • Over at Comics! The Blog, I did a quick sell of Brass Sunwhich is a book many of you should check out – especially if you’re into a bit of clockwork science.
  • The newest episode of Podcast! The Comics went up, and James made me watch a show where women think they’re on a dating contest show with Prince Harry. It hurt my everything.
  • Danica went over the results of the clothing swap she had on the weekend. From what I’ve heard, everyone came out of the experience with new clothes (for free!) while getting rid of a bunch of things they weren’t going to wear anymore. Win win!

Aaaaand, that’s going to be a wrap for the day. There’s more to talk about, but I’m tired you guys. So tired. Until tomorrow…

The Books of Tomorrow, Today!

The last Tuesday of each month tends to get a little hairy at work – not only do we have to send off our monthly mail orders, but more often than not, that lands on the same week our monthly orders are due. This month is especially difficult, because I also have September’s books from DC to order, thanks to their stupid lenticular event (more on that tomorrow, hopefully), so I’m a little haggard – but not too haggard to miss out on my second daily post here at Submet. So without further ado, the day, in point form.

  • The day kicked off at Comics! The Blog with an early look at tomorrow’s more interesting comic book releases. Books of note were Trees, C.O.W.L. and Brass Sun, which I will be talking a lot more about tomorrow.
  • Note: I skipped talking about the release of the first collection of Umbral and Black Science, which is a bit of a crime. If you haven’t started up on those series, now is your chance. Do it. Do it like the wind.
  • Later in the day, I did a bit of goofiness with The All New OrbHe’s the best, you guys. THE BEST.
  • My darling girlfriend Danica wrote about starting… something. Anything. Seriously, if you find you’re having trouble with tackling a project, she has some good, succinct advice for you.
  • The wonderful Andrea Speed stopped by C!TB to recap the second season finalé of Hannibalwhich I’m sure ended with puppies.
  • I’ve got a piece about the return of DC’s lenticular covers going up… somewhere on the internet tomorrow. That’s going to be followed up with a piece about Bob Wayne, and what his departure could mean for the comic book industry and retailers. I’m pretty jazzed about it.
  • Tonight, I’m heading off to record Podcast! The Comics with my writing partner James Leask. We’re currently setting up an interview with a pretty high profile comic book writer, so keep an eye out for that in the coming weeks.

And with that, I bid you all adieu for another day. Hug someone for me, will ya? Thanks.

The Ladies Marmalade and Other Odds and Bodkins

It’s that time of day where things are rounded up. It’s the round-up.

  • It’s Monday, so that means we ran our Q&A column over at Comics! The Blog. Amoung the topics I avoided this week were the ladies of Lady Marmalade, bands I don’t care for, and a couple of songs I really do.
  • Have you been reading Zero? I have. It’s definitely my favourite book out there right now. If you’re looking for a good example as to why, I’d suggest this article I wrote about the series’ second issue. Otherwise, I talked briefly about this week’s eighth.
  • I should have a piece going up somewhere on the internet in the next few days. I don’t want to say where until it happens, but suffice to say, it’s pretty cool having other people interested in the things that I have to say about the comic book industry. Weird, but cool. Please don’t tell them that I’m secretly horrible.
  • On Wednesday, if you’re lucky enough, you’re going to find a comic that features a superhero peeing on someone. Funny thing is, the book isn’t bad. The scene was a little weird, but… yeah. Not a bad book. If you’re the first person to tweet me with what that comic is, I’m going to straight up give you a $5 gift certificate to ComiXology. If nobody does by the end of the day, I’m just gonna go ahead and spend that $5 on me.
  • Oh, and do yourself a favour on Wednesday and check out Brass Sun if you can find it on the shelves. I ordered a lot, because I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read of it in the pages of