Creator Roundup

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This week features Dan Hipp, JH Williams III, Fabio Moon, Jim Rugg, Skottie Young, Eric Canete, Mike Choi, David Lefuente, Dustin Weaver, Phil Noto and Francesco Francavilla!






Dan Hipp
NERDS

JH Williams III
CBR News: While Sandman is obviously an awesome gig, will this project affect your run GLAAD award-winning run on "Batwoman"?
J.H. Williams III: Not really. I will have to take a break from doing artwork -- we're finishing up the artwork for third arc right now. There are two more issues to draw of that before switching over to the "Sandman" stuff, but Haden [Blackman] and I will be carrying on as the writing team while I'm working on "Sandman."
[Taking a break from the artwork on "Batwoman"] probably would have been the plan, regardless. Even if I was going to be doing more art on "Batwoman," someone else would have been working on the fourth arc while I was doing the third, so it doesn't really affect the movement of how the stories will be handled, if that makes any sense.
In the video announcement, Neil Gaiman said he was a fan of your work, specifically citing "Promethea" and "Batwoman," but he also said we would see a side of you in "Sandman" that we have never seen before. Are you changing things up for this project?
That's a tricky question because I am always looking for ways to try out new things. Neil knows that and he's going to try and push me into some stuff that we may not have seen before in terms of types of story that I've told in the past.
It's clearly going to be "Sandman," so it's going to be unlike anything I've drawn previously. The closest thing might be "Promethea" but even that book feels dramatically different from "Sandman." It's definitely going to bring out some different things from me. It should be pretty cool.
When you look at the promo piece that was done, you clearly see that there are some different things going on there than stuff I've done in the past, even though other things I've done in the past have a pretty psychedelic aspect to it. But again, that "Sandman" piece does feel different.

Fabio Moon
http://youtu.be/NYBtN6ZYjGU

Jim Rugg
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Skottie Young
Spongebob zombie color

Eric Canete
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Mike Choi and David LeFuente
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Dustin Weaver
Photo-0066

Phil Noto
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Francesco Francavilla
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Creator Roundup

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This week features Dan Hipp, Terry Moore, JH Williams III, Fabio Moon, Jeff Lemire, Bryan Lee O'Malley, Jim Rugg, Skottie Young, Jeremy Bastian, Becky Cloonan, James Harren, Mike Allred and Neil Gaiman!





Dan Hipp
AMAZING

Terry Moore
SHT.2012-RR4

JH Williams III - This is happening:
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Fabio Moon
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Jeff Lemire
welder SDCC print

Bryan Lee O'Malley - This is one of the hand written set lists for the Scott Pilgrim deluxe edition. Drawn by an actual child.
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Jim Rugg
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Skottie Young
Steampunk final

Jeremy Bastian
boat

Becky Cloonan
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James Harren
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Phil Noto
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Mike Allred
IT GIRL #03 Cover

Neil Gaiman


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Creator Roudup

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This week Dan Hipp comments on Prometheus, Bryan Lee O'Malley is colourful, David Aja is valiant, Skottie Young has a weird lump, Eric Canete is inhuman, Brandon Graham works with the missus, Peter Nguyen captains, James Harren and Matteo Scalera do Marquis, Dustin Weaver is uncanny, Phil Noto is a weasel, and Francesco Francavilla is breaking bad.



Dan Hipp comments on Prometheus:
BIGTHINGS

Bryan Lee O'Malley previews Scott Pilgrim in colour:
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David Aja posted a bunch of concept art for the Valiant relaunch, including this:
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Skottie Young shares a lumpy warm up sketch:
WORD Lump bw

Eric Canete draws the Royals:
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Brandon Graham and his lovely lady Marian collaborated on this piece:
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Peter Nguyen draws Captain America:
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James Harren and Matteo Scalera do Guy Davis' Marquis:
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Dustin Weaver shares a page from Uncanny X-Men #14
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Phil Noto threw up another picture to enjoy:
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Francesco Francavilla posted minimalist posters for the first 6 episodes of Breaking Bad. Here's the first:
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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp shares his love for Kavinsky, Terry Moore has a snake problem, both Fabio Moon and Sean Phillips both get a bit cheeky, Jeff Lemire get's his bat on, Joe hill's a try hard, Bryan Lee O'Malley answers fans, Jim Rugg likes to show off, Templemsith releases his inner Moff, Eric Canete draws the mysterious, Chrissie Zullo goes Art Nouveau, Becky Cloonan goes black queen, James Harren, Matteo Scalera and Coleen Coover are li'l depressed people and Neil Gaiman speaks about Ray Bradbury.




Dan Hipp shares his love for Kavinsky:
KAVINSKY

Terry Moore shares the cover for Rachel Rising 11:
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Fabio Moon gets a bit cheeky:
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Joe Hill lists 5 things he'd like to try as a writer:
List of five things I’ve never done (successfully) as a writer that I’d like to try:
1. Write a novel in present tense.
2. Write a feature screenplay. (Need not be original – could be an adaptation of an existing work)
3. Write a historical novel.
4. Write a novel on a typewriter.* Preferably for Hard Case crime.
5. Write for an ongoing television series.
* Have done this, but not since I was sixteen years old. Note my emphasis on doing something “successfully.” For my purposes, success indicates getting paid… not because I’m money obsessed, but because a paycheck is an indicator of professional level work. That said, the novel I wrote when I was sixteen – The Bones – was a kind of success for me at the time.

Jeff Lemire previews a couple of pages from a 10 page digital exclusive Batman story :
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Jim Rugg is currently holding a show of his notebook art. here's some picks from the show:
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Ben Templesmith offered up this gorgeous Moff Tarken:
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Brian Lee O'Malley answers the fans:
Q. You’ve self-proclaimed how you were influenced by video games, and it’s obvious just by reading Scott Pilgrim too. I just wanted to know if you’d ever consider writing a video game if you got the chance? Would you like to, or are you sticking to comics for the foreseeable future? What genre would you prefer to write for too?
A. yes. I ‘wrote’ the Scott Pilgrim video game itself (the cutscenes & endings), but I would like to help write and develop another game in the future. That is a goal of mine. When i was young I desperately wanted to develop a JRPG-style game, and I guess that would still be my preferred genre to work in.
Q. What’s your favorite thing about Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World (the movie) that wasn’t done in any of the comics?
A. well… in the movie, the fights were… good. Fighting was never my focus in the books, and it was really cool to see all my dumb fight scenes turned into fully choreographed martial arts sequences.
Q. How do you feel about the presence and portrayal of women in comics? As an aspiring comicist (Is that a word?) I cant help but notice how heavily slanted towards men the comic industry is when compared to films and literature, and its kinda bugging me. I liked how Scott Pilgrim and Lost at Sea had a lot for both genders to appreciate and relate to, so I figured you’d have something interesting to say on gender in comics.
A. gender in comics: Sucks. I don’t like to argue about it or point out what sucks about it, because it is self-evident to anyone with a brain, and a lot of people without brains will scream all day that everything is fine. What i’d like to do is try to make comics that are better about gender portrayal and change things in my own small way.

Eric Canete never fails to impress, including this piece:
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Chrissie Zullo makes my day with every new blog post. Check this out:
WItherDeviant

Becky Cloonan did this Conan and Belit for Stephanie Buscema:
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Neil Gaiman pays tribute to Ray Bradbury orally and in writing:

Yesterday afternoon I was in a studio recording an audiobook version of short story I had written for 
Ray Bradbury's 90th birthday. It's a monologue called The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury, and was a way of talking about the impact that Ray Bradbury had on me as a boy, and as an adult, and, as far as I could, about what he had done to the world. And I wrote it last year as a love letter and as a thank you and as a birthday present for an author who made me dream, taught me about words and what they could accomplish, and who never let me down as a reader or as a person as I grew up.

Last week, at dinner, a friend told me that when he was a boy of 11 or 12 he met Ray Bradbury. When Bradbury found out that he wanted to be a writer, he invited him to his office and spent half a day telling him the important stuff: if you want to be a writer, you have to write. Every day. Whether you feel like it or not. That you can't write one book and stop. That it's work, but the best kind of work. My friend grew up to be a writer, the kind who writes and supports himself through writing.

Ray Bradbury was the kind of person who would give half a day to a kid who wanted to be a writer when he grew up.

The SindieCate posted some more Li'l Depressed Boy, this time by James Harren, Matteo Scalera and Coleen Coover:
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Sean Phillips gives his fans a gift:
7.6.12

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Creator Roundup

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This week, Bryan Lee O'Malley gifts us with a Ramona, Jeff Smith gives some CBNAH love, Brian Wood covers Massive, Skottie Young blows my mind (the gap), Jeff Parker wards of thieves, Eric Canete gets his Rocketeer on, Dave Johnson unveils another cover, Peter Nguyen goes the way of the Bat, Michael Oeming gets wet and Matteo Scalera, Coleen Coover and Jorge Munoz do their Sindiecate assignments.





Bryan Lee O'Malley gifts us with a Ramona:
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Brian Wood shares the cover for The Massive #6:
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Jeff Smith gives an interview to Nerdist about RASL, Bone and heaps more:
N: Was it always the plan to write Bone as one long, 1300-page story? Or did that become apparent as you continued writing?
JS: Yes, it was planned from day one as a single story, with a beginning, middle, and end. I didn’t know if it would be 1,300 pages or 2,000 pages, but from the beginning, my wife Vijaya and I wrote a business plan that included graphic novel collections to keep the early parts of the story in print and always available, because we knew it would be a long one.

N: Your current comic RASL is certainly darker in tone than Bone and has been described as sci-fi noir. What is it about RASL’s story and the noir genre that excites you? Were you eager to write something that wasn’t necessarily “all ages?”
JS: What I like about noir is its restrictions – you can only know what the protagonist knows. That makes for a tightly compacted story that moves at a quick pace. And it’s a challenge from a writing standpoint. Noir is about the human condition, and maybe that’s where I’m at in this stage of my life. When I first started thinking seriously about RASL back in 2000, I was still writing Bone mainly for an adult audience, but by the time I actually started drawing RASL, Bone had become a bona fide children’s book, so I was aware that the audiences would be different. But RASL‘s tale was the story I wanted to tell, so that’s the path I had to follow.

N: Do you approach writing RASL in the same way you approached writing Bone? What is your writing process like? Will it eventually be collected in a one-volume edition too?
JS: A RASL One Volume Edition will come, but I have special plans for it, and I’ll announce something next year. The process is no different: I outline, plan, then dive into the breach to see what happens. Bone was a story about innocents under siege. RASL is about damaged people. Where Bone breathed; RASL is claustrophobic. The important thing when writing comics is to make the thing move and be alive in every panel, and that takes the same concentration no matter what the subject matter.

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Skottie Young does a cover for Mind the Gap:
MindTheGap RGB

- Eric Canete gets his Rocketeer on:
ROCKETEERpg01_B&W_send

- Jeff Parker talks about appropriate implements for fending off ne'er do wells:
One night back in grad school I woke up after hearing the smashing of glass. It didn’t have that sound of an accident. I was renting an apartment that was a third of a house and it seemed to be coming from some other part of the house. I grabbed a crowbar that I had inside for some reason and went out the door, and made my way cautiously around the side of the building.
So far I’d passed most of the house without seeing a broken window or hooligans wearing bandit masks, and then I rounded a corner and ran into the renter from next door, doing the same thing as me. We both verified we heard the noise but hadn’t seen anything, and then looked down at what we were holding. He also had a tool, but it was one of those little utility hammers that have a screwdriver inside and don’t weigh anything. I must have grinned because he immediately defended it- “this was all I could find!”
Really my crowbar wasn’t that great a thing to be carrying to mete out justice either (though it was way better than that silly hammer), it was short- it would put me too close to whoever was breaking into the house, and didn’t have a good feel for swinging, either.

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Dave Johnson unveils his cover to Ultimate X-Men #14:
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Peter Nguyen goes the way of the Bat:
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Michael Oeming gets wet for WhatNot:
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Matteo Scalera and Colleen Coover do Parker, while Jorge Munoz does Li'l Depressed boy, all on the SindieCate:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp remembers memorial day, Charles Soule goes on TV, Peter David struggles to find words, Bryan Lee O'Malley answers more questions, Mike Mignola get's foxy, Skottie Young invades, Templsmith draws another Tusken, Eric Canete's work is beautiful, David Johnson cures cancer, Mark Waid talks piracy and Matteo Scalera and Coleen Coover are under Marshall Law.



Dan Hipp:
WORTHREMEMBERING

Charles Soule and Jon Benjamin were on Comic Book Club, live from NY:


Peter David struggles to find words:

See, I want to write all this effusive stuff about Kathleen because it’s our wedding anniversary today. We’ve been together eleven years and I want to write about how much she means to me and how I wouldn’t be able to get through days without her, and how my life only makes sense when I’m with her.
But I’m having real trouble doing so and for a while I wasn’t sure why. I mean, normally writing about stuff isn’t difficult for me at all. It’s kind of, y’know…my thing. But I found myself stymied, and especially after reading her lengthy testament to me over on her own blog. Why would I have trouble with writer’s block over something like this?
After giving it some thought, I think I’ve determined why.

I think it’s because I’m Jewish.

Mike Mignola offers a new print:
hbtrckster_wrk2
Skottie Young threw up a few new pieces on his DeviantArt:
invader_zim_daily_sketch_by_skottieyoung-d50x83x

Bryan Lee O'Malley answers more questions:
Q. in lost at sea and some of your shorter comics there’s strong language pretty much throughout. in scott pilgrim and some of your other other comics it’s fairly moderate. is this like a conscious decision you make after you come up with the story but before you start writing dialogue? also are you not cool with depicting nudity?
A. hi… um, so, in Lost at Sea and my earlier stuff there is definitely more swearing. After Lost at Sea came out, i read it and heard back from people and saw it through new eyes i guess and realized it was a LOT of swearing. i mean, me and my friends certainly swore a lot in our late teens and early twenties, it’s not like i was just storing all my swears to put in writing. It’s just how i talked and how i thought.
But anyway, as a personal challenge to myself, i decided to drop the swearing to like a “PG-13” level in Scott Pilgrim book 1. It was really hard at first, but i came to feel that it can be a crutch to use ‘fucking’ all the time instead of the whole rest of the dictionary. Swearing can be creative and fun but other words are important too.
am i not cool with depicting nudity? wha? I don’t see how there would have been a place for nudity in SP or Lost at Sea. But yeah, since you ask, i guess i’m not that cool with it. I like nudity just fine but i don’t like drawing it that much and I will probably refrain from using much of it in my work for the foreseeable future. maybe it’s because i was raised catholic or maybe i’m just bad at anatomy.
Q. Do you read any webcomics? What are your favorites? Also I love you
A. yeah, i like lots of webcomics, and I read these ones regularly:
octopus pie (Meredith Gran)
bad machinery (John Allison)
hark a vagrant (Kate Beaton)
pictures for sad children (John Campbell)
homestuck (i’m kinda 800 pages behind on it right now though which isn’t even that much if you know homestuck)
i also have been reading Achewood since like the very beginning and i still enjoy it whenever he updates. A true modern classic. Also i love you.

Templesmith draws another Tusken:
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Eric Canete posted this beautiful piece:
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Mark Waid discusses piracy and fileshare:
It came as no surprise to me that, about 24 hours after we posted the first installment of INSUFFERABLE over at Thrillbent, the pages had been downloaded, zipped into a .cbr or .cbz file, and uploaded to various torrent and filesharing sites. The only thing that startled me was that it took 24 hours. Sure enough, installments two and three were similarly webripped, converted and uploaded with increasing speed. By week three, they were available for download around the world within hours. Taken straight from the Thrillbent site.

THIS IS A GOOD THING.

I am not being the least bit sarcastic when I say that I WAS OVER THE MOON ABOUT THIS.

Your mileage may vary but, me, I'm okay with torrenters and "pirates" sharing INSUFFERABLE. Not just because, what the hell, it's free anyway, Mr. Cynic...my hand to God, even if we were charging for it, I'd still be happy because the exposure and promotion is worth more to me at this point than dollars and cents. But more than that...more than that...after having been hip-deep in the research for the past three years, I have seen zero conclusive evidence that, on the whole, "piracy" removes more money from the system than it adds to it. Are there readers who would be buying my print comics who download them for free instead? Sure. Are there, conversely, potential readers who download one of my print comics, sample it, and then become a paying customer if they have access to ensuing print copies? Absolutely, and I've personally sold books to hundreds of them at store signings and conventions. Do the latter outweigh the former? (a) I don't care, because I can't stop the former, and (b) I believe, if you build up enough of a loyal fanbase, that potential exists; certainly, every meaningful* study undertaken on how piracy affects CD sales, DVD sales, etc. shows repeatedly that "pirated" content of quality material can actually act as an effective marketing tool and lead to increased sales. (*meaningful = not bought and paid for by the MPAA or the RIAA. Listening to them talk about piracy is like getting your cancer statistics from Big Tobacco or nutrition info from McDonalds.)

David Johnson unveils his cover for Deadpool #55:
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Matteo Scalera and Colleen Coover do Marshall Law for the Sindicate:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp is strangely absent, Terry Moore is awesome, Moon and Ba go to Italy, Charles Soule is strangely attractive, Jeff Smith get's more cute fan mail, Brian Wood teases The Massive, Skottie Young has a sweet tooth, Bryan Lee O'Malley is brutally honest, Templesmith draws a tuscan raider, Jeremy Bastian blows my mind... again, Brandon and Marian Graham are the cutest couple ever, Dave Johnson, Francesco Francavilla, Jim Mahfood and Phillip Bond get wet, Mike Choi goes cycloptic extraterrestrial, Phil Noto pays respects to MCA and Mike Allred has no fear.







Terry Moore teases his SiP story for next year and answers questions about getting work distributed and finding an artist:
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For a writer to find an artist they can bond with, they’re going to have to go where the wild things are… like the “artist alley” section at comic book conventions—always a ton of talent behind those tables just looking for opportunity. There is the classic website, DeviantArt, where artists have pages with their own galleries and easy contact/interaction. And, this would require some shopping around but, I have to tell you, Tumblr is jammed with artists posting their work. It’s a big universe so you have to surf around, but the tumblr system is easy to navigate and you can see more artists in one hour than you could in a year of flipping through books. To get you started, the link I’m giving for them is set to show results for comic artists. Happy shopping!
If none of that works, try the hotel bar at your local comic convention and be prepared to buy drinks. A lot of drinks. Artists are notoriously bribeable.

















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Moon and Ba put together this video of there time at Napoli Comicon, Italy


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Charles Soule plugs his new book, Strange Attractions:
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- Jeff Smith posts the cutest fan letter ever. click the link to see the accompanying photos:
Dear Mr. Smith:
My name is Tressely. I love to draw. I think you are a great artist. I love the ending of Little Mouse Gets Ready, because it was like, POOF! No clothes. I really like how you drew the book. The mice are cute. I think the BONE books are funny too, especially the snow that goes WHUMP! and just falls out of the sky. My daddy has a shirt like Phoney Bone. Me and my twin brother hit it and act like we are invincible like when the Mario Bros. get invincible because of stars.
Sincerely,
Tressley Chapman (1st grade)

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Brian Wood previews some art for The Massive:
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Skottie Young warms up with Sweet Tooth:
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Bryan Lee O'Malley tells fans what he really thinks:
Q. According to Barney Stinson in the show How I Met Your Mother, in every relationship there is a reacher and a settler. The reacher is the person in the relationship who is dating someone outside of their range. The settler is the person who is dating below their range; in other words, they could do better. In all of Scott’s relationships (Knives, Envy, Ramona) who do you think is the settler and who is the reacher?
A. first of all, this is a horrifying question. Taking relationship cues from a ‘womanizer’ stereotype character on a tv sitcom is a bad idea for your life. This ‘theory’ is reductionist and shallow. It’s a false dichotomy based on arbitrary rankings of real live people. Yes, you can boil anything down to two types of whatever, but that doesn’t mean it’s the ONLY WAY the world works. The world and the people in it are infinitely complex.
Knives, Envy and Ramona are all presented as complicated women, each traveling along their own character arcs. It seems like Scott ‘settles’ for Knives, but when she starts growing up and becoming ‘sexy’, Scott panics and runs away. You could say Scott is ‘reaching’ for the famous & hot Envy, but then you realize he started dating her when she was a boring college student wearing baggy clothes. And with Scott/Ramona, both of them are reaching in their own way — Scott reaching for someone beautiful and fascinating (he’s shallow), and Ramona reaching for someone she thinks is decent and good.
Q. i was pretty shocked when stills came out. have u met anyone who, like stills, gave up on his manhood out of a failed relationship? is stills the kind who would stay gay or is it a phase, like ramona’s case with roxie?
A. this is another horrifying question! Thanks!
Scott’s line “Julie turned you gay?!” is a JOKE. Girls do not turn boys gay. That’s not how it works. Also, being gay is not ‘giving up your manhood’. Gay men are still men.

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Ben Templesmith does a sand person for TempleSith Tuesday:
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Jeremy Bastian has a ton of new sketches on his site, including this one:
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Brandon Graham shares some personal life, and his wife marian decided to re-write the end of Mass Effect in comic form. below are Brandon's work and page one of Marian's work:
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Neil Gaiman gave the commencement address for the University of Arts in Philadelphia:


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Dave Johnson, Francesco Francavilla, Jim Mahfood and Phillip Bond get wet on WhatNot:
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Mike Choi draws Allen the Alien for SindieCate:
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Phil Noto pays respects to Adam MCA Yauch:
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Mike Allred is excited about his upcoming guest spot on Daredevil:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp and Craig Thompson pay respect to Maurice Sendak, JH Williams III and Jeff Lemire show off, Peter David get's political, Jeff Smith and Bryan Lee O'Malley answer fans, Bryan Wood show his workbooks, Eric Canete and Brandon Graham get sensual, Peter Nguyen draws Conan, Dustin Weaver draws Bane on a dinosaur (yup), Mike Mignola and John Arcudi interview each other, Phil Noto is really busy, Francesco Francavilla redesigns Jaws and Skottie Young talks Rob Liefeld.





Dan Hipp and Craig Thompson pay respect to the late Maurice Sendak:
THANKS-2
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JH Williams III shows of the cover to Batwoman 12:
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Peter David talks about Obama and the marriage act:

I’ve been saying for ages that I didn’t buy for a minute the notion that President Obama had any problems with gay marriage. Not for a moment did I think that a guy whose parents, less than half a century ago, would not have been allowed to marry in some states, would believe that legally keeping people apart who love each other was an acceptable way of doing things. But I think that he was concerned about the political backlash. Me, I think he should have said screw the backlash and just been honest. Then again, that’s easy for me to say, because I wouldn’t have had to worry about going all-in on my political ambitions with this issue. He probably felt he needed to save his political capital for health care, which we all know is rock solid steady and couldn’t possibly be overturned or set aside.
In any event, whether Joe Biden’s honest answer to the question was a trial balloon or simply forced Obama’s hand, it was obvious that his foot-dragging toward an inevitable “reversal” of his “evolving” opinion was going to have to happen sooner rather than later. Based on surveys, the GOP is (once again) on the wrong side of this issue, and the people who pointlessly hate the idea of gay marriage were likely not voting for Obama anyway.

Jeff Lemire shares some new art from 'The Underwater Welder':

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Brian Wood shares a pic of his workbooks:

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Jeff Smith received an letter from a nine year old - click the link to read his reply. here's the letter:

Check this out: A father sent this e-mail (through the company that made the documentary about me).
I answered it as honestly as I could. I thought I’d share…
Here is the letter:
Jeff,

My youngest son, Devan is 9 years old, and has been an admirer of  your books for a while. He wrote a letter to you and didn’t know where to send it. So I told him I would find an email address and email you his letter.

As his parent, I feel he is too young to have an email address, so here it is.

Dear Jeff Smith,

I don’t mean to offend you, but I do not like it when you swear in your book “Bone” Back from Boneville.
I just want to tell you that I do not believe in swearing.

To tell you the truth, I love your “Bone” books because they are interesting and funny, but I do not like the book when it swears.
Once you are done reading this note, please remember to try and write back.

Devan.

Eric Canete posted a couple of great new pieces, including this one:
stgermain_B&W_UL

Brandon Graham shares some pages of his sketchbook:
aahoy11

Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some more fan questions:
Q. How long did it take you to create the art form that you wanted to use for the characters in comic? Did you fuss around a lot having many trial and error sessions before you got something you were pleased with or have you always drawn this way?
(AND)
Q. How did you find an art style you felt comfortable using? I’ve been having difficulty developing a style. I’m essentially just trying to find a style that feels natural to me. I just want to get to a point in my work where I don’t have to think too much about how I’m going to draw a leg, nose, etc. Do you have any advice? Thank you

A. hmm, i was just talking about this on twitter today. When i was a teen i copied other artists stuff, I spent some years drawing Anime Style, i got really obsessed with Paul Pope and tried to draw just like him (that’s when I started using a brush). Eventually all those influences and attempts to copy other artists piled on top of each other, and at a critical moment I ended up drawing a whole comic. 96 pages of Hopeless Savages comic for Oni Press. It was really really hard. But from the beginning of it to the end of it, I basically learned to draw for myself. I broke myself down as an artist and started over.
No matter how cool and stylish you think your art is, it’s going to be sucky and horrible and mutate a lot when you have to tell a whole story, drawing lots of stuff you don’t care about (houses, cars, trees) and new problems you never worried about before (drawing someone from behind, from above, drawing someone hugging someone else, kissing, touching, fighting, etc).
In general i think a lot of young artists use the “character design and style definition” period as a tool for procrastination. This period is undoubtedly important. But it has to end as soon as possible, because you have a story to tell.
In answer to the other person, you’re going to be thinking really hard about how to draw every leg, nose etc possibly forever, but at least for the first few years / 300-500 pages of comics. Drawing is a nightmare. Get comfortable with it by doing it. You can’t get perfect before you start.

Peter Nguyen draws Conan:
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Dustin Weaver draws Bane on a dinosaur:
dino eccc12

Mike Mignola and John Arcudi interview each other:
MM: After the first couple of Hellboy short stories ("The Wolves of Saint August" and "The Corpse"), I realized how many stories there might be about Hellboy's past, but I think things really started to take off with the second miniseries, Wake the Devil. I put a lot of new pieces on the board with that one—Roger, Hecate, and the Baba Yaga show up, Edward Grey is mentioned, and we get all that fun stuff with Zinco and the Nazis. Now it was clear this thing could go in a bunch of different directions, and there were suddenly a whole lot of characters that wanted to be fleshed out. At the same time I was starting to realize I didn't want this to be a team book—I wanted to deal with who Hellboy was and where he was going. I saw the potential for a whole lot of different stories, but since I was the only guy doing the book I just didn't know how much I'd actually be able to do. So I tried not to think about all that potential.  
It all started to change when we did the B.P.R.D. spinoff book, and what started out as an experiment worked. When I wrote Plague of Frogs—that was like Wake the Devil—I introduced a lot of new stuff and gave the impression things were going somewhere. And then, really, when you came on board after that everything started to take off. I started to see just how big the story was, and that it might actually (with the help of a lot of really great artists) be possible to get that story into print. And with you firmly in charge of the ongoing story line, it's freed me up to focus on the history—that's what I've had the most fun with the last couple of years—creating these characters and events in the past and seeing how they relate to the ongoing story. Seeing things from the past, like the Heliopic Brotherhood (which started out as a joke), impact three or four different titles in a pretty organic way—that's pretty exciting to me.
Recently we finally came up with a couple of different ways to do stories set during World War II, and your Edward Grey book (Lost and Gone Forever) happened because you just wanted to write a western for John Severin—so is there some other period of history or some event that you've been wanting to write about that you might bring into the Hellboy universe?
JA: You know, there is one era that's always been on my radar, but I never thought about it in relation to the Hellboy universe until you just asked. The turn of the twentieth century! You got all kinds of things happening. The burgeoning automobile business, the birth of manned flight, and most importantly the invention of a ton of things that really made the twentieth century so, so different from the previous one thousand years. Light bulbs, motion pictures, phonographs, radio, and the people who developed them like Tesla and Edison. Bigger-than-life inventors who were also huge personalities in the press. The thing that strikes me about it most is that it was a time where magic and technology were overlapping in the public eye.

Phil Noto is drawing a bajillion variant covers at the moment, including this one:
tumblr_m3swvnyI9e1qhyhwto1_500

Francesco Francavilla does Jaws:
jaws_low

Skottie Young daily sketches his thoughts on Liefeld's Lobo:

LOBO DAILY
I'm going to start this off with a disclaimer. This isn't a hate post, it's not meant to start a movement of any sorts or get a bunch of replies about how this guy is the devil and how he drew pouches and shoulder pads and no feet. Pouches are awesome, GIANT shoulder pads are even more so, and his comics are riddled with feet. Though I've never read a comic made better by adding more feet so that complaint has always bee very funny to me.

Rob Liefeld is a comic book cheerleader, played a huge role in my early days of reading comics and has always been a very vocal supporter of me as a professional creator. So my following post is meant in good fun.

A lot of people are up in arms about a lot of things in comics these days. There seems to be a new hot button topic every other day. My twitter feed reads like some sort of Sorkin episode. Everyone is talking so fast while a camera is sprinting behind them as they walk from room to room battling the finer points of who owns what, who screwed who, what company is more evil than the other, and so on and so on. I love Sorkin, but sometimes it just gets to be too much. Then I listen to a podcast with Rob...

... and I have decided that he must be stopped. (again, not really. Take it easy everyone)

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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp celebrates the Avengers release, Jeff Smith is nearly done with RASL, Bryan Lee O'Malley makes Scott Pilgrim more colourful, Skottie Young's not a puppet, he's a real boy, Ben Templesmith uses the force, Eric Canete parks, Chrissie Zullo updates her blog, therefore making my week, Beck Cloonan previews The Mire, Peter Nguyen embraces his inner nerd, Matteo Scalera interprets Chew, Craig Thompson does a cover and Sean Phillips makes a poster.





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Dan Hipp celebrates avengers week with this piece:
BETWEENASSEMBLIES

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Jeff Smith Has been hard at work on the penultimate issue of RASL:
RASL-14-desk










It’s crunch time. I’m finishing up the inks on RASL #14 so we can send it out next week. That means I’m stocking up on Pellegrino, turkey slices, and jalapenos (my munchies of choice!), so I can power through the next couple of days. This is the second to last issue, so a lot story threads are starting to come together – - that’s why you see so many older issues of RASL strewn around my desk for reference.


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Bryan Lee O'Malley has some preview pages for The coloured editions of Scott Pilgrim:
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Skottie Young warms up with a bit of Pinnochio action:
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Ben Templesmith adds to his growing collection of TempleSith art:
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Eric Canete provides a feast for the eyes, including this:
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Chrissie Zullo make's my heart sing, so I'm posting a few of her new pics. Enjoy.
CindyCassieLR
Cassie Hack and Cindy Team up.

DreamLR
Dream

PrincessLeiaLR

- Becky Cloonan previews her upcoming book The Mire:
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Peter Nguyen sketched Chamber and a rag-tag group of mutants:
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Matteo Scalera interprets Chew for The SindieCate:
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Craig Thompson shows of his cover to Tim Seeley's forthcoming book Revival:
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Sean Phillips added some new posters to his CafePress, including this Fatale poster:
F1s
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp has some bubblegum, Jim Rugg draws with pens, Joe Hill pushes product, Ben Templesmith is a freak, Eric Canete gets raunchy, Neil Gaiman plays with bees, Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some fan questions, Beck Cloonan teases Wolves, Mike Allred teases IT Girl, Peter Nguyen draws Spidey and MJ, Brian Wood talks Massive and Coleen Coover chews.






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Dan Hipp mixes Star Wars and Bubblegum:
BOBALICIOUS

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Jim Rugg shows off his skills with the ol' ballpoint pens:
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Joe Hill has released his short story with his father, Throttle, as a stand alone e-book:
A couple years ago, my dad and I wrote a short story together for an anthology celebrating the work of Richard Matheson. Our thing was called “Throttle,” and is the story of a biker gang persecuted by a faceless trucker… our riff on Matheson’s classic, “Duel,” which also features a homicidal trucker with a mysterious agenda.
The story appeared in that Matheson tribute (HE IS LEGEND), had a turn as an audio book, was recently adapted by Nelson Daniel and Chris Ryall as a two-part comic, and as of today, you can now find it in the eBookstore of your choice as a standalone:
As an added bonus, the eBook includes some of Nelson Daniel’s concept sketches for the story. It’s illustrated just like yer little kid’s favorite picsure book, hoo hoo! Only don’t show this story to your little kid, on account of all the people gettin’ run over and macheted and butchered and so on.
Thanks much and if you haven’t had a chance to check “Throttle” out, hope you will, and hope it gives you a good ride.

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Ben Templesmith offers his weekly dose of Star Wars:
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Eric Canete has a bunch of new art on his blog, including this suggestive piece:
zipper_GREY_UL

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Neil Gaiman plays with bees:


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Bryan Lee O'Malley answers a few fan questions:
Q. I’ve been a fan of Scott Pilgrim for a while, but just read Lost at Sea recently, and really liked it, because it feels very personal, maybe semi-autobiographical. So…what do you think about auto-biographical/personal graphic novels? Would it have been hard to write Scott Pilgrim if you hadn’t writed Lost At Sea first?
A. lost at sea is actually less autobiographical than scott pilgrim, if you want to get technical… i intentionally grabbed a lot of locations and colorful characters from my life for Scott P, but lost at sea is much more traditionally fictional. nothing in Lost at Sea actually happened to me and none of the characters are specifically based on anyone i knew. it’s just a book that i wrote about some emotions i had.
The two stories represent two different ways of looking at my own life and trying to make sense of the world, i guess, which is what all my work revolves around.
Q. So I reread SP and I realised there was all this symbolism. Blew my Frikkin mind. I just wanted to ask, were you intending on writing some goofball comics, or was the heart from Lost at sea and finest hour, there all along?
A. yes
i mean, yes, there was a plan and there was a heart all along
Q. When you first wrote/drew SP Vol.1, Did you know it was going to take 5 more books. And if so, at what point of Vol.1 did you think, this is a good place to stop?
A. yes, i mean, yes it was going to be somewhere from 4-7 books long when I pitched the series to Oni Press, and I quickly settled on 6 books.
i don’t know if you noticed, but Scott Pilgrim Vol 1 ends at a very specific point, where Scott has just fought Ramona’s first evil ex and learned about the rest of them. that’s the launching point for the rest of the story, so i thought it was a good place to end the first book.

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Becky Cloonan added another image from Wolves:
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Peter Nguyen added a sketch from C2E2:
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Brian Wood chats with Hero Complex about the Massive:
HC: You made your first mark in comics 15 years ago with “Channel Zero,” another story about a desperate future although that one was more about posed by leaders and law. If you think of yourself then and now, what do you see as the biggest change?
BW: That book, “Channel Zero,” was an art school project made by a passionate and angry kid with no tact or subtleness. I don’t say that to demean the work – the book is meant to have that sort of message. But now, 15 years later, I’ve learned to be tactful, evenhanded, and really subtle. But its subtlety that still has a razor edge when it needs one.
HC: Of the characters we’ll meet in “The Massive,” which one is closest to you in voice, view or temperament?
BW: I often find myself, usually unconsciously, putting myself into the female leads, but in this case its Callum Israel, the main character, captain of the ship, and the guy that provides the moral story line, such as it is. It’s hard to explain how and why without giving too much away ahead of time, but I think I can relate to his age and his ongoing struggle to hold onto his identity in a changing world. I have a reputation for writing young, cool characters and “The Massive” is the first, of many I’m sure, characters I’m creating that are my age or older.
HC:  There’s been so much post-apocalyptic fiction in recent years and wonder whether it’s because we are so anxious in an age when technology has advanced so far while ethics have not — intelligence run rampant, wisdom withering. Then part of me thinks that maybe it’s just a way for storytellers to find a wild frontier now that the western is gone…
BW: It’s certainly a rich genre for writers to tap into, and there is a real coolness factor to it. But for me what drives me to it is fear. Meaning, actual tangible, real-life fear, mostly as a dad of two little kids. I believe hard times are coming, and maybe I’ll grow old and die before it hits, but I bet my kids won’t, and it’s tough to think about the reality that they’ll probably not have enough free water to drink, or will suffer in some other way like that. Will they be able to spend time in the sun? For their entire lives they’ve lived in an America at war — ones of its own choosing. Will they never know a different America? Maybe I’m exorcising demons in writing about this. But maybe I just can’t stop thinking about it.
- Coleen Coover does Chew for the Sindiecate:
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Mike Allred teases a new project:
IT GIRL no.1 FC blue
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp sends a postcard, Jeff Smith loves Amazons, Jamie McKelvie defends, Bryan Lee O'Malley opens his sketchbook, Sean Phillips draws an iron jaw, Jeff Lemire welds underwater, Ben Templesmith draws a droid, Eric Canete draws a dragon, Joe Hill plugs Terry Moore, Jeff Parker gets his Buffy on, Colleen Coover does Queen and Country and Andy Khun channels the power cosmic.




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Dan Hipp took the week of the internet, but did send us a postcard:
WISHYOUWEREHERE2

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Jeff Smith drew Wonder Woman so Gail Simone could sign it:
WW-Jeff-sketch

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Jamie McKelvie talks to iFanboy about taking over the Defenders art:
iFanboy: Jamie, we recently saw you tackle a team book with the excellent X-Men: Season One GN, how has your approach to to handling a group of characters like The Defenders changed after that X-Men experience?
Jamie McKelvie: You really have to think about what makes each character different, so they don’t end up looking like the same doll dressed in a different outfit. Personality, body language, and so on. It’s especially important with a team like X-Men where they all wore the same uniform, but it applies to the The Defenders too.

iF: On X-Men: Season One, you collaborated with Mike Norton on art, will you be teaming up again?
JM: We’ll be collaborating in the same way we did on X-Men: Season One.  He’s finishing backgrounds again, and once again doing a fantastic job of it.

iF: Now, you worked with Matt in the past on the Iron Man back up stories a while back, how is it to be working together again?
JM: Excellent! Matt writes the most inspirational scripts for an artist. He’s also really great to throw ideas around with, lots of back and forth emails as we plan story and design and so on.

iF: Of all the characters in The Defenders, which one are you most excited about getting to draw? Which one is going to be the most challenging?
JM: I think the answer to a) is all of them and b) all of them. They’re all distinct individuals, with their own looks, personality etc. Of course that’s not even getting into the supporting characters. There’s one Matt and I have come up with that is already a favourite of mine, even though she’s only appeared in two panels so far.

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Bryan Lee O'Malley shared an old page from his sketchbook:
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David Aja revealed the project with Fraction he teased last week:
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Sean Phillips likes to draw attractive ladies:
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Jeff Lemire talks to Newsarama about his new original graphic novel, The Underwater Welder:
Newsarama: Wow, Jeff, this new graphic novel has been in the works for a long time. How many years have you been working on The Underwater Welder?
Lemire: Like four and half years, I think.
Nrama: People who know your work will see some familiar themes. But this has a pretty cool sci-fi element involved, doesn't it?
Lemire: Yeah, I describe it as a really emotional Twilight Zone episode. It's about this guy who works off a deep-sea rig off the coast of a small coastal town. So he spends a lot of his time diving underwater and working on an oil pipeline.
And then one day, when he goes down and comes back up, the world is a completely different place. It's completely changed. Something changed while he was down there.
It's about him trying to find his way back home to his wife before his baby is born.
It's kind of creepy and moody and weird. It's like a lot of my stories in that it's based on a small town environment, and it has a central relationship as the core, with the relationship between him and his wife and his son. But it's got a sci-fi twist and a time travel element to it.
Nrama: You know, between Animal Man and now The Underwater Welder, it's obvious you are exploring what it means to be a dad.
Lemire: Yeah, I'm very subtle, aren't I? No kidding.
Nrama: But with The Underwater Welder, it's obviously focused on the pressure of being a new dad. Was that because you came up with this concept before you were a dad?
Lemire: Yeah, and it's been such a long time coming that I can look back on it now and see a part of my life represented there in the book, really. When I first started working on it and came up with the original idea, I hadn't started working for DC or Vertigo yet. And I didn't have a kid yet. That wasn't even on the radar for my wife and me. We hadn't even talked about it. So I was in a completely different place personally and professionally than I was when I finished the book.
And I think, as a result, I saw the book change from its original intent and my original story grew and morphed into something completely different by the end of it. So on the page, you're going to see that, as the character goes through things, exactly what I was going through. And feelings about parenthood.

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Ben Templesmith draws a droid:
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Eric Canete uploaded a bunch of stuff he did at C2E2, including this dragon:
dragon_grey_UL

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Joe Hill gives Terry Moore a plug:
A few people out there are familiar with Terry Moore’s zen storytelling mastery; not enough, and I’m kind of sick of it. Go check out Echo, the 30-issue series that writer-artist Moore completed last year. It has the zip and swagger of those great early 80s SF smashes: Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Starman, Superman II, and the first two Terminator movies. The cast of characters – anchored by a trio of strong, complicated, beautiful women – is Dickensian… by which I mean, each character is funny, distinct, memorable, and fascinating. The storyline, which concerns a woman who has been contaminated by super-powered buckyballs, and who soon discovers she can shoot laser beams from her boobs – YES – takes off like a ballistic missile, and never slows down. The subject matter is threaded through with compelling riffs on technology, quantum physics, and the frightening primacy of corporations in American culture. The violence is raw, bare-knuckled, and frequent, the way I like it. And then there’s a love story, and I’m a sucker for a satisfying, unforced love story. Echo is waiting for you. Get ye to a bookstore or your local comic shop, or fire up the ComiXology app and hunt it down.

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Jeff Parker is writing a Willow series for Dark Horse. Here's the David Mack Cover:
Willow_510

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Coleen Coover pays homage to Rucka's Queen and Country:
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Andy Khun twarts Silver Surfer:
surfer twart-pink
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp combines intergalactic menaces, JH Williams III previews a cover, Terry Moore talks it up, Fabio Moon is a matadoor, David Aja is a tease, Francesco Francavilla draws eggs and skulls, Peter David talks physics and bowling, Templesmith and Eric Canete draw different characters, Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some fans, Becky Cloonan goes gothic, Jim Mahfood goes Fear and Loathing, Phil Noto draws a young white queen and Sean Philips draws the fantastic Four.



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Dan Hipp mixes cosmic universes:
BLACKTIEONLY

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JH Williams III previews the cover for Batwoman #10:
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Terry Moore discusses a whole bunch of stuff with Robot 6. Here's a taste:
O’Shea: If you had the opportunity to publish Rachel Rising in color would you do it, or do you feel this series is most potent visually because of the black and white dynamics?
Moore: I would publish all my work in color if I could. It’s just been impossible for me to achieve in terms of time and money. I’ll probably never have more of both, but maybe I will hand the properties over to somebody bigger someday and they will color it for us, like Jeff did with Bone to Scholastic. To me, Bone came alive when it was colored. I was about half way through SiP when I knew I wanted to color it all someday. I began drawing for color, doing less pen and ink cross-hatchey stuff and leaving more open spaces. You can see where I started doing that—it’s obvious. Echo was drawn for color. Rachel is drawn for color. Someday.
O’Shea: You are releasing the entire Echo run on digital as well, do you hope to gains a new audience for the series through this new platform?
Moore: Yes, I do. But I also hope to get Echo to fans who want it on their iBrain. People are using digital memory to build virtual brains for themselves, which includes a media library of everything they like. Even if they’ve already read Echo, they want it for their digital brain so they can have it on-call always. You gotta be there for them.
O’Shea: A Dustn Cabeal/Comic Bastards review offered the following opinion: “He’s frankly at the prime of his career in my opinion and cranking out one of the best creator owned series on the market period. A while back he did a lot of work with Marvel and as much as I tried I couldn’t get into it. It didn’t feel like Moore, it felt like a highly regulated environment that wanted this big name in comics to come over and add his spin to their properties but without actually changing anything. With Rachel Rising, you get the true talent of Moore’s skills and that’s something Marvel will never be able to fully tap into.” Would you agree that your writing is stronger when unhindered by corporate editorial guidance, or do you think your Marvel work is just as strong as your creator-owned projects?
Moore: Well, when I work in cooperation with others, they are part of the final product. When I work alone, it’s all me, good or bad. It’s just simple physics. What you hope for in working with others is that you will hook up with people more talented than you, who will take what you offer and make it better. It’s the great band syndrome. Great bands work like that. Suck-bands have one star backed by others with no say. So you don’t want that. You don’t want to work with DC or Marvel and tell them to leave you alone. You say, give me your best, and then you listen to them. I’m sure that, given time, we would have tightened up the chemistry and done great work. I just couldn’t stay on and keep my own book going at the same time. I was making two series at the same time for a year. It was too much to continue.

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Fabio Moon unleashes his inner matador:
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David Aja teases a project with Fraction:
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Francesco Francavilla draws eggs and skulls:
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Peter David analyses the theoretical physics of bowling:

The moment when I release a bowling ball, with a full rack of pins at the other end, there are many variations as to what could happen. However, particularly in a close game–where simply getting a spare isn’t going to get it done–it really comes down to only two possibilities:
Either the ball will strike. Or the ball will not strike.
But it occurs to me that, at the moment of release, the ball has both struck and not struck. Both possibilities exist simultaneously.
I call it Schrodinger’s Balls.
PAD

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Templesmith continues to draw like a crazy drawing freak:

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Eric Canete draws Arch Monk:
archmonk_GREY_UL

- Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some fan questions. here's a few:

Q. I’ve always had questions about Scott’s brother. Why does Lawrence have a different last name? (or is that his middle name?) Is Lawrence older or younger than Stacey? I know Scott and Lawrence aren’t close, but are Stacey and Lawrenc close? Does she tell him of all Scott’s adventures and then they both shake their heads and thank god they don’t take after the same side of the family as he does?
A. Lots of people have asked about Lawrence West’s name. Lawrence West is his given name. His full name is Lawrence West Pilgrim. He is named after a train station. Ha ha ha.
Originally, Lawrence West was a very different character with a MAJOR ROLE in volume 5. But I felt that I was getting too far away from the Scott/Ramona relationship, adding too many new characters, and I decided to re-focus the book on the core cast.
(That earlier version of volume 5 revolved around the TIBB Battle of the Bands, which ended up going into the movie. I haven’t looked at that old draft in a long time and I can’t really remember what else was in it. It wasn’t very good, but it was an early draft, so whatever.)
Q. why did hollie betray kim all of a sudden? I dunno there was like one scene of jason and hollie smiling together in volume 4, and it seemed really random when it was revealed in volume 5
A. Kim lived with a bunch of people she hated, then moved in with someone she liked, and ended up hating her too. We only see Kim’s side of the story, but maybe I’m suggesting that Kim is part of the problem here. It kind of goes with the “personal hero narrative” theme of the series. Kim is complicated.

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Becky Cloonan is drawing Dracula. Here's a sneak peak at Mina Murray:
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Jim Mahfood pays tribute to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas:
FearAndLoathingInLasVegas

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Brian Wood discusses creator owned comics and retailers:
Looking back over 14 years, there have been a few things related to creator-owned comics and the building of a career off of them that stand out.  They stand out to the point that I’ve taken to calling them “rule #1, rule 2”, and so on.  One day I’ll get them all out there in a formal essay, but right now I want to talk about one of the most important ones, and how it relates to The Massive series launch:
The retailer is the customer.
I forget who first told me that, but it’s a solid bit of common sense.  The way the direct market is set up, comic shop retailers have to purchase comics on a non-returnable basis, meaning they can’t return unsold copies.  The fact they go on to re-sell them to their customers is, in a way, almost irrelevant.  The books have been ordered and paid for.
So when you talk about creator-owned comics, indie comics, self-published comics, the retailer is being asked to make a very real and permanent financial investment in that book, one that he or she cannot make back should the book not perform to expectations.   The retailer is the customer.  You, meaning the creator and/or the publisher, are pitching and selling to the retailer.  Or you should be.  It’s often shocking to me how few people forget that.  Sometimes I forget it.
You can hype up your readers all you want, but if their shop didn’t order the book, they are out of luck.  YOU are out of luck, too.
So this is me telling you to tell your retailer that, if you want to buy a copy of The Massive, to order you a copy.  This isn’t SAGA and I’m not BKV or Millar or Bendis who stand a greater chance of being automatically stocked on shelves.  Retailers are going to gauge demand and order accordingly.  So tell them if you’re interested.

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Phil Noto draws Emma Frost:
tumblr_m203pbdb4r1qhyhwto1_500

-
Sean Phillips did Fantastic Four for the Hero initiative:
FF

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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp combines intergalactic menaces, JH Williams III previews a cover, Terry Moore talks it up, Fabio Moon is a matadoor, David Aja is a tease, Francesco Francavilla draws eggs and skulls, Peter David talks physics and bowling, Templesmith and Eric Canete draw different characters, Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some fans, Becky Cloonan goes gothic, Jim Mahfood goes Fear and Loathing, Phil Noto draws a young white queen and Sean Philips draws the fantastic Four.



-
Dan Hipp mixes cosmic universes:
BLACKTIEONLY

-
JH Williams III previews the cover for Batwoman #10:
7022719893_d29a701f91_b

-
Terry Moore discusses a whole bunch of stuff with Robot 6. Here's a taste:
O’Shea: If you had the opportunity to publish Rachel Rising in color would you do it, or do you feel this series is most potent visually because of the black and white dynamics?
Moore: I would publish all my work in color if I could. It’s just been impossible for me to achieve in terms of time and money. I’ll probably never have more of both, but maybe I will hand the properties over to somebody bigger someday and they will color it for us, like Jeff did with Bone to Scholastic. To me, Bone came alive when it was colored. I was about half way through SiP when I knew I wanted to color it all someday. I began drawing for color, doing less pen and ink cross-hatchey stuff and leaving more open spaces. You can see where I started doing that—it’s obvious. Echo was drawn for color. Rachel is drawn for color. Someday.
O’Shea: You are releasing the entire Echo run on digital as well, do you hope to gains a new audience for the series through this new platform?
Moore: Yes, I do. But I also hope to get Echo to fans who want it on their iBrain. People are using digital memory to build virtual brains for themselves, which includes a media library of everything they like. Even if they’ve already read Echo, they want it for their digital brain so they can have it on-call always. You gotta be there for them.
O’Shea: A Dustn Cabeal/Comic Bastards review offered the following opinion: “He’s frankly at the prime of his career in my opinion and cranking out one of the best creator owned series on the market period. A while back he did a lot of work with Marvel and as much as I tried I couldn’t get into it. It didn’t feel like Moore, it felt like a highly regulated environment that wanted this big name in comics to come over and add his spin to their properties but without actually changing anything. With Rachel Rising, you get the true talent of Moore’s skills and that’s something Marvel will never be able to fully tap into.” Would you agree that your writing is stronger when unhindered by corporate editorial guidance, or do you think your Marvel work is just as strong as your creator-owned projects?
Moore: Well, when I work in cooperation with others, they are part of the final product. When I work alone, it’s all me, good or bad. It’s just simple physics. What you hope for in working with others is that you will hook up with people more talented than you, who will take what you offer and make it better. It’s the great band syndrome. Great bands work like that. Suck-bands have one star backed by others with no say. So you don’t want that. You don’t want to work with DC or Marvel and tell them to leave you alone. You say, give me your best, and then you listen to them. I’m sure that, given time, we would have tightened up the chemistry and done great work. I just couldn’t stay on and keep my own book going at the same time. I was making two series at the same time for a year. It was too much to continue.

-
Fabio Moon unleashes his inner matador:
6904909366_b3b58b59a2_o

-
David Aja teases a project with Fraction:
4f82f6dae38e8

-
Francesco Francavilla draws eggs and skulls:
alien_low

-
Peter David analyses the theoretical physics of bowling:

The moment when I release a bowling ball, with a full rack of pins at the other end, there are many variations as to what could happen. However, particularly in a close game–where simply getting a spare isn’t going to get it done–it really comes down to only two possibilities:
Either the ball will strike. Or the ball will not strike.
But it occurs to me that, at the moment of release, the ball has both struck and not struck. Both possibilities exist simultaneously.
I call it Schrodinger’s Balls.
PAD

-
Templesmith continues to draw like a crazy drawing freak:

0b0e3ecc777211e1989612313815112c_7

-
Eric Canete draws Arch Monk:
archmonk_GREY_UL

- Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some fan questions. here's a few:

Q. I’ve always had questions about Scott’s brother. Why does Lawrence have a different last name? (or is that his middle name?) Is Lawrence older or younger than Stacey? I know Scott and Lawrence aren’t close, but are Stacey and Lawrenc close? Does she tell him of all Scott’s adventures and then they both shake their heads and thank god they don’t take after the same side of the family as he does?
A. Lots of people have asked about Lawrence West’s name. Lawrence West is his given name. His full name is Lawrence West Pilgrim. He is named after a train station. Ha ha ha.
Originally, Lawrence West was a very different character with a MAJOR ROLE in volume 5. But I felt that I was getting too far away from the Scott/Ramona relationship, adding too many new characters, and I decided to re-focus the book on the core cast.
(That earlier version of volume 5 revolved around the TIBB Battle of the Bands, which ended up going into the movie. I haven’t looked at that old draft in a long time and I can’t really remember what else was in it. It wasn’t very good, but it was an early draft, so whatever.)
Q. why did hollie betray kim all of a sudden? I dunno there was like one scene of jason and hollie smiling together in volume 4, and it seemed really random when it was revealed in volume 5
A. Kim lived with a bunch of people she hated, then moved in with someone she liked, and ended up hating her too. We only see Kim’s side of the story, but maybe I’m suggesting that Kim is part of the problem here. It kind of goes with the “personal hero narrative” theme of the series. Kim is complicated.

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Becky Cloonan is drawing Dracula. Here's a sneak peak at Mina Murray:
tumblr_m26ltp1CQJ1qgf3d3o1_500

-
Jim Mahfood pays tribute to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas:
FearAndLoathingInLasVegas

-
Brian Wood discusses creator owned comics and retailers:
Looking back over 14 years, there have been a few things related to creator-owned comics and the building of a career off of them that stand out.  They stand out to the point that I’ve taken to calling them “rule #1, rule 2”, and so on.  One day I’ll get them all out there in a formal essay, but right now I want to talk about one of the most important ones, and how it relates to The Massive series launch:
The retailer is the customer.
I forget who first told me that, but it’s a solid bit of common sense.  The way the direct market is set up, comic shop retailers have to purchase comics on a non-returnable basis, meaning they can’t return unsold copies.  The fact they go on to re-sell them to their customers is, in a way, almost irrelevant.  The books have been ordered and paid for.
So when you talk about creator-owned comics, indie comics, self-published comics, the retailer is being asked to make a very real and permanent financial investment in that book, one that he or she cannot make back should the book not perform to expectations.   The retailer is the customer.  You, meaning the creator and/or the publisher, are pitching and selling to the retailer.  Or you should be.  It’s often shocking to me how few people forget that.  Sometimes I forget it.
You can hype up your readers all you want, but if their shop didn’t order the book, they are out of luck.  YOU are out of luck, too.
So this is me telling you to tell your retailer that, if you want to buy a copy of The Massive, to order you a copy.  This isn’t SAGA and I’m not BKV or Millar or Bendis who stand a greater chance of being automatically stocked on shelves.  Retailers are going to gauge demand and order accordingly.  So tell them if you’re interested.

-
Phil Noto draws Emma Frost:
tumblr_m203pbdb4r1qhyhwto1_500

-
Sean Phillips did Fantastic Four for the Hero initiative:
FF

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Creator Roundup

shieldCreator
This week, Dan Hipp combines intergalactic menaces, JH Williams III previews a cover, Terry Moore talks it up, Fabio Moon is a matadoor, David Aja is a tease, Francesco Francavilla draws eggs and skulls, Peter David talks physics and bowling, Templesmith and Eric Canete draw different characters, Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some fans, Becky Cloonan goes gothic, Jim Mahfood goes Fear and Loathing, Phil Noto draws a young white queen and Sean Philips draws the fantastic Four.



-
Dan Hipp mixes cosmic universes:
BLACKTIEONLY

-
JH Williams III previews the cover for Batwoman #10:
7022719893_d29a701f91_b

-
Terry Moore discusses a whole bunch of stuff with Robot 6. Here's a taste:
O’Shea: If you had the opportunity to publish Rachel Rising in color would you do it, or do you feel this series is most potent visually because of the black and white dynamics?
Moore: I would publish all my work in color if I could. It’s just been impossible for me to achieve in terms of time and money. I’ll probably never have more of both, but maybe I will hand the properties over to somebody bigger someday and they will color it for us, like Jeff did with Bone to Scholastic. To me, Bone came alive when it was colored. I was about half way through SiP when I knew I wanted to color it all someday. I began drawing for color, doing less pen and ink cross-hatchey stuff and leaving more open spaces. You can see where I started doing that—it’s obvious. Echo was drawn for color. Rachel is drawn for color. Someday.
O’Shea: You are releasing the entire Echo run on digital as well, do you hope to gains a new audience for the series through this new platform?
Moore: Yes, I do. But I also hope to get Echo to fans who want it on their iBrain. People are using digital memory to build virtual brains for themselves, which includes a media library of everything they like. Even if they’ve already read Echo, they want it for their digital brain so they can have it on-call always. You gotta be there for them.
O’Shea: A Dustn Cabeal/Comic Bastards review offered the following opinion: “He’s frankly at the prime of his career in my opinion and cranking out one of the best creator owned series on the market period. A while back he did a lot of work with Marvel and as much as I tried I couldn’t get into it. It didn’t feel like Moore, it felt like a highly regulated environment that wanted this big name in comics to come over and add his spin to their properties but without actually changing anything. With Rachel Rising, you get the true talent of Moore’s skills and that’s something Marvel will never be able to fully tap into.” Would you agree that your writing is stronger when unhindered by corporate editorial guidance, or do you think your Marvel work is just as strong as your creator-owned projects?
Moore: Well, when I work in cooperation with others, they are part of the final product. When I work alone, it’s all me, good or bad. It’s just simple physics. What you hope for in working with others is that you will hook up with people more talented than you, who will take what you offer and make it better. It’s the great band syndrome. Great bands work like that. Suck-bands have one star backed by others with no say. So you don’t want that. You don’t want to work with DC or Marvel and tell them to leave you alone. You say, give me your best, and then you listen to them. I’m sure that, given time, we would have tightened up the chemistry and done great work. I just couldn’t stay on and keep my own book going at the same time. I was making two series at the same time for a year. It was too much to continue.

-
Fabio Moon unleashes his inner matador:
6904909366_b3b58b59a2_o

-
David Aja teases a project with Fraction:
4f82f6dae38e8

-
Francesco Francavilla draws eggs and skulls:
alien_low

-
Peter David analyses the theoretical physics of bowling:

The moment when I release a bowling ball, with a full rack of pins at the other end, there are many variations as to what could happen. However, particularly in a close game–where simply getting a spare isn’t going to get it done–it really comes down to only two possibilities:
Either the ball will strike. Or the ball will not strike.
But it occurs to me that, at the moment of release, the ball has both struck and not struck. Both possibilities exist simultaneously.
I call it Schrodinger’s Balls.
PAD

-
Templesmith continues to draw like a crazy drawing freak:

0b0e3ecc777211e1989612313815112c_7

-
Eric Canete draws Arch Monk:
archmonk_GREY_UL

- Bryan Lee O'Malley answers some fan questions. here's a few:

Q. I’ve always had questions about Scott’s brother. Why does Lawrence have a different last name? (or is that his middle name?) Is Lawrence older or younger than Stacey? I know Scott and Lawrence aren’t close, but are Stacey and Lawrenc close? Does she tell him of all Scott’s adventures and then they both shake their heads and thank god they don’t take after the same side of the family as he does?
A. Lots of people have asked about Lawrence West’s name. Lawrence West is his given name. His full name is Lawrence West Pilgrim. He is named after a train station. Ha ha ha.
Originally, Lawrence West was a very different character with a MAJOR ROLE in volume 5. But I felt that I was getting too far away from the Scott/Ramona relationship, adding too many new characters, and I decided to re-focus the book on the core cast.
(That earlier version of volume 5 revolved around the TIBB Battle of the Bands, which ended up going into the movie. I haven’t looked at that old draft in a long time and I can’t really remember what else was in it. It wasn’t very good, but it was an early draft, so whatever.)
Q. why did hollie betray kim all of a sudden? I dunno there was like one scene of jason and hollie smiling together in volume 4, and it seemed really random when it was revealed in volume 5
A. Kim lived with a bunch of people she hated, then moved in with someone she liked, and ended up hating her too. We only see Kim’s side of the story, but maybe I’m suggesting that Kim is part of the problem here. It kind of goes with the “personal hero narrative” theme of the series. Kim is complicated.

-
Becky Cloonan is drawing Dracula. Here's a sneak peak at Mina Murray:
tumblr_m26ltp1CQJ1qgf3d3o1_500

-
Jim Mahfood pays tribute to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas:
FearAndLoathingInLasVegas

-
Brian Wood discusses creator owned comics and retailers:
Looking back over 14 years, there have been a few things related to creator-owned comics and the building of a career off of them that stand out.  They stand out to the point that I’ve taken to calling them “rule #1, rule 2”, and so on.  One day I’ll get them all out there in a formal essay, but right now I want to talk about one of the most important ones, and how it relates to The Massive series launch:
The retailer is the customer.
I forget who first told me that, but it’s a solid bit of common sense.  The way the direct market is set up, comic shop retailers have to purchase comics on a non-returnable basis, meaning they can’t return unsold copies.  The fact they go on to re-sell them to their customers is, in a way, almost irrelevant.  The books have been ordered and paid for.
So when you talk about creator-owned comics, indie comics, self-published comics, the retailer is being asked to make a very real and permanent financial investment in that book, one that he or she cannot make back should the book not perform to expectations.   The retailer is the customer.  You, meaning the creator and/or the publisher, are pitching and selling to the retailer.  Or you should be.  It’s often shocking to me how few people forget that.  Sometimes I forget it.
You can hype up your readers all you want, but if their shop didn’t order the book, they are out of luck.  YOU are out of luck, too.
So this is me telling you to tell your retailer that, if you want to buy a copy of The Massive, to order you a copy.  This isn’t SAGA and I’m not BKV or Millar or Bendis who stand a greater chance of being automatically stocked on shelves.  Retailers are going to gauge demand and order accordingly.  So tell them if you’re interested.

-
Phil Noto draws Emma Frost:
tumblr_m203pbdb4r1qhyhwto1_500

-
Sean Phillips did Fantastic Four for the Hero initiative:
FF

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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp joins the games, Terry Moore paints, Fabio Moon does fashion, Ben Templesmith bears his teeth, Jamie McKelvie talks Captain Marvel, Eric Canete makes shark soup, Peter Nguyen tries something new, Mike Mignola talks about sleeping, Becky Cloonan talks about her past and process, Francesco Francavilla puts a robot head on a giant gorilla and Craig Thompson sketches from a film.




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Dan Hipp joins the games:
HUNGERGAMES


- Terry Moore painted Katchoo and talked about Echo going digital:
Katchoo2012Sci-fi fans, gird your loins! Echo will make its digital debut this Wednesday 28th with issues 1-15 and the first three trade paperbacks. The rest of the series, issues 16-30 and the final three trade paperbacks, will hit next Wednesday April 4. This is a correction to my earlier update that the entire series would release the same day.

Echo is the story of a normal woman encountering a highly abnormal problem… a liquid metal armor harboring the power of an atomic weapon. Naturally, the makers of said armor want it back. What follows is a deadly chase across the western desert and a hard look at the darker side of man and science.

Echo won the Harvey Award for Best New Series in 2009.

Trust me, you need to read Echo before you date or marry any nuclear scientists, secret U.S. weapons contractors, Chinese double agents or Ford mechanics. You’ll thank me later.

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Fabio Moon does some fashion:
6863424096_18cb0b653a_b

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Ben Templesmith has something to sink your teeth into:
6854591726_e99e7eab49_o

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Jamie McKelvie talks to Newsarama about the new Captain Marvel costume:
Newsarama: Jamie, strictly as a Carol Danvers fan, how excited are you about the character finally taking on the role of Captain Marvel in her new series?
Jamie McKelvie: Very! She's a great, complex character. I think she should/can be every bit as much of a flagship character as Captain America or Iron Man. Being Ms. Marvel was a great and bold move when the character was created, but there's a sense with it that she is "just" a female counterpart to a male superhero. With the name change, she's standing up there under her own power.

Nrama: Obviously, a huge component is that it's a rare superhero costume — male or female — that actually appears fairly practical. Was that a major part of the goal from the start? In general, would you like to see the mainstream comic book industry move more towards that direction?     
McKelvie: I wouldn't say necessarily practical — but that's a result of us trying to create something that came out of her character and background in the military. I think the best and strongest costumes arise from the character's personality, backstory and so on.

It deserves a much longer answer, but I'd like to see more consideration for what message a female character's design is putting across. I think we, as an industry, are getting better at it though, which is heartening.
Nrama: Though the look is new, there are definite touches of past costumes, most prominently the sash. Was it a priority for you to incorporate elements of what's come before?

McKelvie: Yes — we wanted to provide a link to her past while also striking out with something new. So you've got the basic layout of the first Ms. Marvel/Captain Marvel colors, but flipped, the sash from the Warbird look, then the stripes, gloves/boots and collar taking inspiration from her Air Force life. In the same way Captain America's costume is very much superhero, but also tells you he comes from an army background.

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Eric Canete has some shark soup:
sharksoup_COLOR_UL

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Peter Nguyen gives Batwoman the brush treatment:
tumblr_m1cne17GuG1qeegaqo1_1280

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Mike Mignola chat's to CBR:


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Becky Cloonan talks about her past and process:
It’s true that most of the time I work off a script- and I’ve been really lucky to work with some amazing writers like Steve Seagle, Jhonen Vasquez and my long-time collaborator Brian Wood. But let’s travel back in time a bit, to a time before I had anything published, to give you a look at where I am coming from:

Highschool. The 90’s. I dreamed, with my best friend Jen Quick (
who is drawing comics again, woo!!), of being a comic artist. And here I am now, but not by the path I had imagined for myself. Back then I yearned to create our own epic fantasy and adventure stories, ten— no, ONE HUNDRED BOOKS LONG! :D Of course none of these ideas got off the ground, and I never even made it more than a few chapters in before turning my attention to a new story.

College. Things started changing for me, with my art and stories, influences and inspirations- I think I was about 19 or 20 when I realized that I’d never get anything done if I kept starting and stopping- I had to actually sit down and FINISH A COMIC. So I started with short stories, many of which were one, five, or ten pages. A few were 22 pages. I had short stories in a bunch of the old Meathaus anthologies, and published a ton of mini comics. The idea was to work up my stamina- after all, you can’t finish a marathon without ever having ran before. Baby steps!

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Francesco Francavilla draws a robot:
the_watchers_RM_low

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Craig Thompson plays around in his sketchbooks:
womandunes1

-
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp tells a joke, Terry Moore shows of a tat, Jamie McKelvie is a marvel, Joe Hill sits in a chair, Bryan Lee O'Malley scribbles, Brian Wood makes history, Fabio Moon, Francesco Francavilla, Dustin Weaver, Rafael Albuguerque, Mike Allred and Brandon Graham pay tribut to Moebius, Sean Phillips takes an art class, Phil Noto gets his claws out, Eric Canete draws an Egyptian and Peter Nguyen goes to Rome.




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Dan Hipp kicks us of as always:
ARKHAM

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Terry Moore shared a tattoo from a fan:
tumblr_m0xq874zFb1r5z36xo1_1280

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Jamie McKelvie's take on the Captain Marvel/ Ms. Marvel revamp. You've all seen it:
6991218189_fda038cbf8_o

- Joe Hill discussed the future of The Cape, Locke and Key and other things with CBR:


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Bryan Lee O'Malley shared one of the scribble drawings he submitted for the Scott Pilgrim movie:
tumblr_m0zojomBp41ro3irro1_1280

- Brian Wood is writing X-Men and Ultimate X-Men:
Announced over the weekend, and well documented in several places, I am the new writer on X-Men and Ultimate Comics: X-Men.  The first time in history, according to Marvel, that a person has written two ongoing X-books, one in each universe.
tumblr_m1526dZlbM1qz58pq
That’s Kitty Pryde, from Ultimate, with a new costume I created (and Jorge Molina made into reality) to reflect some significant changes to her character.  I can’t get into a lot of story detail, at least not beyond what’s in those links, but I’ll bulletpoint some of the key stuff:
• In the Ult title, Kitty becomes the focus of the title, and puts her front and center of a sort of mutant resistance relative to the troubles they’ve been having in that story to-date.  I’d call her a Joan Of Arc character if that didn’t suggest all sorts of religious connections that don’t exist.  Maybe an atheist Joan Of Arc.  Wait, but Kitty’s Jewish.  Ok, moving on.
• On the X-Men title, I’m taking the “security team” label to heart and pushing it as far as it’ll hold.  On the Marvel panel over the weekend Arune called it an espionage book which is pretty accurate, although perhaps not so literally a “spy” book.  It uses a lot of the trappings of that genre.  If I had to define it in broad, simple strokes I would say it owes something to the legacy that books like The Authority and the (original) Ultimates created.  


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Fabio Moon drew a tribute to Moebius:
6831487074_f7cec095f8_o

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Francesco Francavilla twarted a tribute to Moebius:
jean_giraud_low

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Dustin Weaver's Moebius tribute:
moebius tribute

- Rafael Albuquerque's Moebius tribute:
RolaDoida


- Mike Allred's Moebius tribute:
MOEBIUS tribute sm

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Brandon Graham's Moebius tribute:
moebius-long-goodbye-low

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Sean Phillips painted this at an art class he attends:
15.3.12

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Phil Noto draws a 'what if' version of Logan, Laura and Charles:
tumblr_m1568rb4vr1qhyhwto1_500

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Eric Canete drew this fine pic:
cleopatra_grey_UL

- Peter Nguyen traveled through Rome to complete this piece:
tumblr_m0vuqgv1181qeegaqo1_1280
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp is a bounty hunter, Fabio Moon celebrates women, Terry Moore is a tease, Jeff Smith webcasts, Bryan Lee O'Malley posts a lost artwork, JH Williams III, Becky Cloonan and Michael Avon Oeming pay tribute to Moebius, Jim Rugg has a show, Francesco Francavilla does Silver Surfer, Mike Carey trailers, Charles Soule debates floppys vs trades, Ben Templesmith warms up, Brandon Graham gets autobiographical, Peter David talks John Carter and Peter Nguyen does Jean Grey.




- Dan Hipp comments on the reliability of bounty hunters:
BOUNTYHUNTERS

- Fabio Moon celebrates women:
6819212452_5d2d818538_b


- Terry Moore offers this little tidbit for Strangers in paradise fans:
Coolness. Katchoo & Francine’s first serious give-it-to-me kiss made the Best Kiss list at afterellen.com amid a slew of film/tv kisses.
If you care at all about that, you may be interested to know that Francine and Katchoo will emerge from their self-imposed sabbatical next year, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Strangers In Paradise in 2013. That’s all I can say at this point.

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Jeff Smith participated in the Scholastic webcast on March 7th. Click the pick to see the video.
Pasted Graphic

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Bryan Lee O'Malley posted some cool 'missing' art from back in 2003:
tumblr_m0spa26oR11qc4eyio1_1280

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JH Williams III remembers Jean Giraud, AKA Moebius:

I consider him one of my greatest influences, as I’m sure a lot of artists do. His work is highly revered around the world by many of his peers, or anyone that knows really great art when they see it. Some of my earliest exposure to his work was some of his science fiction works when I was a young boy, but what truly won me over for a lifetime was his work on Blueberry. Probably thee finest comics tales of the old west ever produced. Moebius was a true master and innovator of line, texture, and use of palettes. His work has impacted comics in so many ways its impossible to follow all of the roots. In my humble opinion, his art has affected our understanding of modern comics to the same level as Jack Kirby influence.

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Jim Rugg is having a show at the end of the month. Here's his promo poster:

postcard_blog2


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Francesco Francavilla twarted this amazing Silver Surfer:

silver_surfer_2012_low


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Mike Carey posted a trailer for his book the Steel Seraglio:



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Charles Soule debates the merits of floppys vs trades:

So, which is better?  First of all, they’re both great, and as long as you’re reading comics in one form or another, you’re okay by me.  The real answer is that both have their perks.  These days, I read most of what I read in floppy form, because I want to support the industry (especially creators I either know personally, particularly enjoy or both), and floppy sales still drive a lot of publisher decisions (even though I think they really shouldn’t, considering the much wider market for trades.)  That said, there are a few series I read in trade (Unwritten, Scalped, a few others), and a few more that I read in floppies and then buy in trade (which, to me, is the highest possible endorsement – it says that I can’t wait to read a given installment of the series, and then the pleasure I’ll get from owning the collected edition is worth the added expense.  I do that with Locke & Key, one of my favorite books running, and I expect it to be that way with Saga as well.  It certainly happened with Y the Last Man and Ex Machina.)

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Ben Templesmith's daily sketch:
tumblr_m0oy41WIYY1qz5805o1_500

- Here's a
Brandon Graham to get into you:
hurf

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Peter David discusses John Carter From Mars:

It’s easy to point out that, since I have several dogs in this hunt–namely I work for Disney and also wrote the *ahem* New York Times Bestseller graphic novel prequel, “World of Mars,” that I cannot approach the newly released “John Carter” in any sort of unbiased way. And that’s true. But not for the obvious reasons.

I’m going to be biased because when I was ten years old, throwing myself eagerly into the Edgar Rice Burroughs tales of Barsoom, there were nights–especially at the end of some VERY lousy days–where I would stand in the backyard and try to find the glittering red spot that was Mars against the blackened sky. And I would look up longingly, just as Carter had, and throw my arms wide, and wish desperately that I could leave my mortal body behind and find myself on Mars. There I would pal around with a four armed green guy, and a calot would be my pet, and I’d have a naked Martian girlfriend (yes, I thought that way at age ten. What can I say? I was precocious. Don’t tell ME gender preference isn’t ingrained.)

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Peter Nguyen does Jean Grey:
tumblr_m0mr6kV7ls1qeegaqo1_1280

- Becky Cloonan and Michael Avon Oeming pay tribute to Moebius at
WhatNot:
blueberrysmall
MoebiousTrib

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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp is brave, JH Williams III makes me covetous, Bryan Lee O'Malley revisits the past, Mike Mignola goes classic, Peter David rants, Skottie Young wants brains, Templesmith rides the tentacles, Neil Gaiman writes about writing, I play favourites with Chrissie Zullo, Becky Cloonan and Phil Noto get in touch with their inner romantic, Grey and Palmiotti go creator owned and Ryan Ottley pays homage to PITT.



This week’s Dan Hipp:
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JH Williams III puts up my Favourite page of his for sale. Anyone wanna buy it for me?
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Terry Moore was nominated for some Ghastlys:
Sounds like a posh Brit on BBC, doesn’t it? “Oh dear, I’ve been nominated for some ghastly awards.” But that’s the name of them, The Ghastly Awards, celebrating the ghoulish accomplishments in fiction. They are new, and it’s an honor to be nominated right out the gate by them. I’m nominated for two categories, Best Inker and, of all things, Best Letterer. I’ve never received a nod for lettering before. See, you live long enough and eventually one of everything happens, sometimes twice.

Bryan Lee O’Malley revisited Scott and Knives:
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Mike Mignola provides the new cover for joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness:
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Peter David rants about the state of Journalism today:

You’ve just gone live with a lurid story over how Stephen Hawking visits sex clubs.
How in God’s name is this anybody’s business? I mean, part of me cringes even bringing it up because it just gives more exposure to this garbage, but I do so because I think it brings up a wider issue worth addressing.
Y’know, years ago–before any and all sense of privacy and decorum was crushed into non-existence–if this crap had crossed the desk of any responsible news editor, he would have taken one look at it and asked a simple question: “Is this news?” And by “news,” he would have meant information that was covered by the public’s right to know.
The answer in this instance would have been an uncategorical “no.” He would have tossed it. He might even have upbraided the reporter for wasting his time with such garbage. He would have said, “This is tabloid crap.”

Remember tabloid crap? The tabloids were considered the nadir of journalism. They weren’t even seen as real newspapers. Any serious journalist wouldn’t have been caught dead writing a story that would have been front-page fodder for the likes of the National Enquirer.

Skottie Young goes Zombie with his daily sketch:
Zombie001

Here’s a
Templesmith daily sketch:
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Neil Gaiman writes about writing:
It's a weird thing, writing.

Sometimes you can look out across what you're writing, and it's like looking out over a landscape on a glorious, clear summer's day. You can see every leaf on every tree, and hear the birdsong, and you know where you'll be going on your walk.

And that's wonderful.

Sometimes it's like driving through fog. You can't really see where you're going. You have just enough of the road in front of you to know that you're probably still on the road, and if you drive slowly and keep your headlamps lowered you'll still get where you were going.

And that's hard while you're doing it, but satisfying at the end of a day like that, where you look down and you got 1500 words that didn't exist in that order down on paper, half of what you'd get on a good day, and you drove slowly, but you drove.

And sometimes you come out of the fog into clarity, and you can see just what you're doing and where you're going, and you couldn't see or know any of that five minutes before.

And that's magic.

Chrissie Zullo had too many good artworks this week to just choose one:
HulkSheHulkProcess
CindyBondHL

Becky Cloonan is in fine form:
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Justin Grey and Jimmy Palmiotti discuss their series Creator owned Heroes with Broken Frontier:
BROKEN FRONTIER: What is the concept of Creator Owned Heroes?


JIMMY PALMIOTTI: The most basic concept is a monthly book featuring mine, Steve Niles and Justin Grays characters in a revolving door kind of way- 3-4 part stories that feature wild concepts and ideas from us and showcasing some of the best art in comics. As well, we are setting up the back of the book in a magazine format to feature everything we can that has to do with creator owned properties and showcasing the things we love about comics, such as cosplay, meeting the fans, highlighting web sites, books and interviews. The first issue features a great interview with the coolest guy in and out of comics, Neil Gaiman.


We are experimenting with this book and having it hit your local stores on a monthly basis. Creator Owned Heroes is a celebration of creators pooling their efforts together and taking it out to the street. Another thing about COH is that we were getting frustrated as consumers spending their money on comic books that are 4 minute reads…the idea of spending $3-4 dollars on a 22 page action sequence that gets flipped thru in minutes is something we never want to do. Creating content beyond the initial two stories demands that the reader get involved and spend some time with us and in this day and age, I think its really important for us to make a connection to the retailer and fans.



JUSTIN GRAY: One of the things that appealed to me with comics was that you could get material in that medium unlike anything in the other mediums. What was once a very experimental art form that not only told stories with art and words, but also pushed concepts into new areas seems to be locked in a rigid set of genres. Comics were something of a forbidden fruit in that you could get mature and cultural themes presented in so many different ways.

Ryan Ottley pays tribute to PITT:
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Phil Noto offers a portrait of Matt Murdock and Elektra Nachios:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp goes threadless, Dustin Nguyen is the same bat (adventure) time, Rafael Albuquerque get's out his Talons, Terry Moore goes digital, Fabio Moon get's his bat on, Jamie McKelvie is a phonomancer, Francesco Francavilla get's out the ray guns, Peter David live blogs the oscars, Bryan Lee O'Malley lets someone grow up, Brian Wood combines space with sport, Becky Cloonan does a gig poster, Ryan Ottley is a prophet and Phil Noto plays with GI Joes.





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Dan Hipp submitted a T-Shirt design to threadless. Vote for it here!
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Dustin Nguyen does Adventure Time:
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Rafael Albuquerque designs a Talon for Batman: Night of the Owls:
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Terry Moore is on Comixology:
Today Rachel went up for sale on ComiXology! Issues 1-5 are now available. Issue #1 is 99cents, the rest are $1.99 each. And, in case you’re wondering, yes, beginning with the next issue, ComiXology will post same day releases of all new Rachel issues. That means, Rachel Rising #6 hits stores everywhere and ComiXology the same day, March 7.
Details: The price on new issues will be cover price, just like the stores, and will remain cover price until the following new issue comes out. Then #6 will go down to $1.99 and join the others in the catalog. Sound fair? I think so. I talked to some key retailers about it and they agreed it was an equitable arrangement. Nobody has the jump or price advantage during that critical new issue window.
The goal is to sell Rachel Rising through as many stores as possible. ComiXology is my online store, and the best there is. I’m very happy to join their ranks!Picture-1-500x299

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Fabio Moon draws Batman and Robin:
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Jamie McKelvie announced a new Phonogram project:

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Francesco Francavilla added a Ray Gun WhatNot:
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- Peter David live blogs the Oscars:

Hi, and welcome to the annual tradition here at www.peterdavid.net of live-blogging the Oscars. It’s fun. It’s entertaining. It’s not limited to 140 characters a comment (or response for that matter). And best of all, it guarantees that I’ll stay awake.
I’ve been paying mild attention to the red carpet. Every year I come to the same two conclusions: Women will wear damned near anything, and no man on the planet looks as good in a tux as Pierce Brosnan did in the Bond films. Also, good news: apparently Cirque du Soleil will be doing a performance at some point.
So…let’s all get ready and hope no one gets a paper cut opening an envelope.
8:30: No one back stage could have said to Morgan Freeman, “Hold still. Let me straighten your tie.” Really? That’s not anyone’s job?
8:31: Well, the montage is off to a good start.
8:32: Rick Santorum just shat himself when Clooney kissed Billy Crystal.
8:33: As the 18 to 24 year olds wonder not only who Billy Crystal is, but why he’s in blackface calling himself “Sammy.” What’s up with that?, they’ll be wondering. Isn’t blackface totally insulting?
8:34: More people saw “Tin Tin” just then than when the film was in the theaters.
8:35: Let’s see how long til there’s a Ricky Jervais joke.


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Bryan Lee O'Malley posted a sketch of an old Raleigh from Lost at Sea:

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Brian Wood posted the cover to a new mini series he's writing:
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Becky Cloonan did a gig poster:
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Ryan Ottley pays homage to Graham and Roy's Prophet:
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Phil Noto's Scarlet and the Baroness:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp glares with snake eyes, Fabio Moon likes his coffee black, Joe Hill talks about talking about politics, Jeff Smith works a puppet, Bryan Lee O'Malley makes a mess, David Aja shows off, Skottie Young warms up with Gran'ma, Neil Gaiman speaks, Branson Graham loves cats, Dave Johnson and Francesco Francavillia go cosmic, Jorge Munoz is a prophet, Phil Noto draws a spider and Mike Allred cranks out pure awesome sauce.



- This week's
Dan Hipp:
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Fabio Moon likes his coffee:
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Joe Hill talks about talking about politics:
Over there on the Twitters, I post on a pretty wide range of subjects. I instigate #geekfights, link to stuff I like, taunt friends, pimp my work, pimp other people’s work, and generally have fun.
Oh, and I also tweet about politics. Stuff like this:
The problem for the hardcore GOP voter
is that they know they hate Obama,
but if the economy booms back,
they're out of easy reasons why.

I mean: he fixes a staggering economy,
nails Osama (which Bush didn't do cos he was hard for Saddam),
and has a mess of foreign policy wins.

Or this:
House GOP holds hearing on birth control,
decline to include anyone capable of giving birth:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/16/contraception-hearing-house-democrats-walk-out_n_1281730.html

A part of me believes that speaking out politically isn’t just a right; it may even, to a degree, be an obligation, part of what makes democracy work. Certainly in New England, the (very old) tradition of the public meeting, where anyone is free to get up and spout off for a couple minutes, is one that seems to have led to an engaged public, a citizenry that feels (rightly) their voice matters. (Small point of pride: in the New England states, voter turnout typically hovers around 70% in Presidential election years… a rate very few states in the rest of the Union come close to matching)
Lots of people don’t agree with my take on things. That don’t confront me none. I even kind of like it when people disagree. You don’t use your voice every now and then, you might forget you have one.


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Jeff Smith drew a Muppets varient cover:
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Bryan Lee O'Malley shares a lost page from Lost at Sea:
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David Aja shows of a new cover:
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Skottie Young warms up with Gran'ma Ben:
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Neil Gaiman updates his readers:
I started feeling last night that real work was happening. I could see it starting to mount. My morale is starting to improve, as it always does when writing happens, and I remember that I actually can do it after all.

Currently I'm mostly writing the HBO American Gods first episode. I'm really enjoying it, partly because a lot of what I've written isn't in the book. It's implied in the book, or talked about generally, or referred to obliquely, but it's scenes I hadn't written. So I feel that I'm doing new work, even if it's not new. If you see what I mean.

And, strangely, it seems to be feeding in to the next American Gods book, which is what I'm sort of working on right now. (Actually, I'm writing a short story that comes after Monarch of the Glen and before The Next Book. But it feels organically needed.) 

Other than that... I'm looking after myself. The main new thing I've been doing is actually jogging for 37 minutes a day. (It was 37 minutes the first day, and so I've kept it the same every other day to see how much further or faster I get, because my little iPod Nano keeps track of this stuff.)

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Brandon Graham shares some sketches in including this one:
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- Here's a new
Dave Johnson:
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Francesco Francavillia posted and awesome WhatNot:
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Jorge Munoz pays tribute to Prophet:
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Phil Noto renders the Black Widow:
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- Here's a
Mike Allred commission:
Edie Sawyer commission

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Dan Panosian draws a homage to Fables:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp gives 5 minutes from Mario, Sana Takeda shows off, Jeff Smith talks on the radio, JH Williams III shares his playlist, Nate Powell talks about books, Brian lEE o'malley draws his favourite thing, Ba and Moon go straight to inking, Charles Soul talks work for hire, Skottie Young draws Splinter, Brandon and Marion Graham draw each other, Mike Allred has some Aquaman fun, Jeff Parker talks about how to properly collaborate, Becky Cloonan goes gothic, Sean Phillips cracks out the ray gun and Phil Noto plugs the Avengers movie.



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Dan Hipp has heaps of new stuff on his site, including this one:
KART

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Sana Takeda previews Venom 13.2:
venom13-2_01

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Jeff Smith recorded an interview with Black Squirrel Radio:



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JH Williams III is not only the best artist in the business but a fan of the Ramones as well. Here's what he's been listening to:
The Black Keys – El Camino

Puny Human – Revenge Is Easy

Orange Goblin – Coup De Grace

Orange Goblin – Frequencies From Planet Ten

Radiohead – Amnesiac (expanded edition)

Jesus And Mary chain – Psychocandy (expanded and remastered)

Jesus And Mary Chain – Darklands (expanded and remastered)

Jesus And Mary Chain – Automatic (expanded and remastered)

Jesus and Mary Chain – Honey’s Dead (expanded and remastered)

Jesus And Mary Chain – Stoned And Dethroned (expanded and remastered)

Debbie Harry – Koo Koo (new remastered version)

Mumford And Sons – Sigh No More (limited 3 disc version)

The Smiths – Remastered Box Set (of all their albums)

Adele – 19

Adele – 21

The Cars – Move Like This

Rush – Permanent Waves (Remastered)

Rush – Roll The Bones

Killing Joke – Absolute Dissent

Tricky – Knowle West Boy

Ramones – Subterranean Jungle (expanded and remastered)

Ramones – Too Tough To Die (expanded and remastered)

Simple Minds – New Gold Dream

Simple Minds – Empires And Dance

Simple Minds – Real To Real Cacophony

Simple Minds – Sparkle In The rain

David J – Not Long For This World

Pink Floyd – The Final Cut

Soft Cell – Non Stop Erotic Cabaret

Prince – Around The World In A Day

Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier

Steppenwolf – For Ladies Only

Blondie – Atomic (single)

Stephen Colbert with The Black Belles – Charlene II I’m Over You (single)

Neal Heft – Batman

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Nate Powell does a reading questionnaire in cartoon form:
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Bryan Lee O'Malley changed up his yumbler and posted a heap of great new art, including this Ramona Flowers:
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Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon got inspired to draw without pencils:
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I guess Bá and I weren't the only ones impressed by the link to a 26 page story done in ONE day by this incredible french artist called Boulet. You can check out the story clicking here. It's a funny and nice story on its own, but to think it was done in 26 hours is insane. It's one page per hour.
Poking around the web, I found some videos of the guy drawing, and discovered that he doesn't pencil his pages, going straight to inking.
Check it out.
Bá and I got all kinds of excited about this and, during some coffee breaks, we tried out hand at drawing straight with pens. Bá's version in the one with blue pen, mine is the other one, in black.







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Charles Soule talks about work for hire:
Today’s topic is “work for hire.”  This is a term that gets thrown around constantly within the comics business, and I think often with something of a negative connotation.  Even a casual student of comics history has probably heard something about the way work for hire (which I’ll abbreviate to WfH going forward for my own sanity) “stole” the rights to Superman from Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel back in the 30s. In truth, that’s not really accurate, but I think that’s the general impression.  Jack Kirby tangled with it, as did Stan Lee and a number of comics’ earliest luminaries.  In some ways, WfH is why charities like the
Hero Initiative are so important (they provide assistance to aging creators lacking financial resources for medical or other needs.)  WfH has a stigma attached to it, as if it’s a doctrine that allows fatcats to steal from poor, ignorant creators.
Here’s the truth: work for hire is a business term, not exactly a legal one.  It can have substantial legal (and financial) consequences, but ultimately, it’s a deal point that can be negotiated.  This post will aim to explain why WfH can be useful to everyone working on a project.  It’s not good or bad, it’s just a tool – the key is knowing what it means to you, and whether or not you should agree to it.

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Skottie Young's daily sketch is Master Splinter. Awesome.
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Brandon and Marion Graham drew each other:
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Mike Allred has some fun with Aquaman:
AQUAMAN for Johns

- J
eff Parker talks about co-creating comics:
Not that this ever stops me, I charge right into working with other cartoonists to bring new books and characters into existence, hoping I’ll figure it out on the way. This subject comes up regularly at Periscope Studio, of which I’m a member. I don’t know that we’ve reached a consensus, or that it’s even possible to do, but we keep talking about it out in the main room where everyone can hear our thoughts. I think that’s what needs to happen in the comics (and really, all entertainment) industry now.
The past month has opened up several unhealed wounds in comics- the new Watchmen comics, the Ghost Rider ruling, and the Walking Dead lawsuit (I’m not going to choose links, you can google any of those and bone up on them yourself based on your preferred news sources). Not pleasant stuff, but we might as well make the most of it and start hashing these practices out while it’s fresh on our minds. You may be worried about broaching the subject with a friend of yours you’re teaming with, so there’s never been a better excuse to bring it up.
I’m going to confine my thoughts to creation at the ground level, before any publishers are involved because that is the area we have the most control over. And if we can’t get near consensus as individuals how these things should work, good luck trying to dictate policy to a corporation. This is purely a beginning dialogue, and I’m sorry if I infuriate some with no clear cut answers. Those have to be reached between the collaborators.

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Ben Templsmith has a cool little video advertising a show:

Coming up: Ben Templesmith from Dr. Sketchys on Vimeo.



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Becky Cloonan plugs her new book 'The Mire':
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Dustin Nguyen posted a valentines day sketch:
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Chuck Dixon, Eric Larsen and a bunch of others weigh in on the Gary Friedrich case. Here's chuck's thoughts:
At Marvel all you need to do is endorse your check and you've legally turned over all rights to them. Anyone who works in comics under a work for hire agreement knows that any rewards they receive are at the whim of the company who owns the property. The company can grant or deny you further funds at their discretion. Marvel certainly could have cut a check for Gary based off of the Ghost Rider movies. It's undeniable that he created the property (along with Mike Ploog). Marvel has given money to other creators when their material was used in other media. There's certainly enough money to go around after two movies and tons of merchandising. There's what's strictly legal and what's right. Marvel is way wrong in this case. But, sadly, Gary's in a large club of creators who are victims of very bad deals.


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Sean Phillips goes cosmic:
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Phil Noto plugs the Avengers movie:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp's a hero, Phil Noto's a kitty, Terry Moore fights for his supper, JH Williams III is mainstream, Joe Hill puts up a door, Sean Phillips shows off, Skottie Young casts a spell, Peter David introduces his daughter to Star Wars, Jeremy Bastian is a freak, Chrissie Zullo draws some women, Jeff Lemire is full on DC, Dustin Nguyen goes beyond the JL, Francesco Francavilla goes to space, Will Wheaton, Felicia Day and Jamie McKelvie collaborate, Ryan Ottley rsides in the DMZ and Dustin Weaver os Astonishing.






- This week's
Dan Hipp:
HAILTOTHEKINGBABY

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Phil Noto draws Kitty Pryde:
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Terry Moore wants you all to pre-order the Rachel Rising Vol. 1 trade:
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You can now order the first Rachel Rising  TPB: The Shadow Of Death, at Amazon for early discount. It ships next month, March. I encourage you to order from them if a store is not convenient, because we want Amazon to like Rachel. Please post any good reviews you may have on Rachel, or any of my books there. It really helps with ratings and my future ability to list new books there in the future. Thanks!

















- JH Williams III got a spotlight in USA Today:
Co-writer/artist J.H. Williams III and co-writer W. Haden Blackman most fondly remember the comics growing up that focused more on story than just beating up bad guys, and that's what they aim for when crafting the adventures of Kate Kane and her cowled alter-ego in
Gotham City.

"It wasn't always 'Let's get to the villain' — there was actual character interactions that were very profound and ended up having some sort of comment on the bigger action stuff," Williams says. "That shows in the work we're doing now."

The current Batwoman character has made a major impact in the DC Universe since first appearing in the maxiseries 52 six years ago. The Detective Comics "Elegy" run from Williams and writer Greg Rucka featuring her was an instant classic, and the portrayal of the lesbian superheroine garnered a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Comic Book in 2010. (The new Batwoman comic is up for the same honor this year as well.)


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Joe Hill installed some new doors in his place:
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- Here's a sweet new
Sean Phillips:
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Skottie Young has a bunch of new sketches this week, including this one of Hermione:
Hermionecolor


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Peter David Introduced his daughter Caroline to the original Star Wars movies with an interesting result:

We just completed a long-overdue aspect of nine-year-old Caroline’s education by finishing up showing her the only three “Star Wars” films that really matter: Eps 4, 5 and 6. She actually sobbed copiously when Vader died. You know, we spend so much time bitching about Lucas doing this, that and the other think that sometimes we forget the power these films can pack, especially for younger viewers.

Then we asked her the obvious question. Which of the three was her favorite?

Without hesitation she said, “Return of the Jedi.” I said, “Because of the Ewoks?” She said, “No, because of Leia. This is the first movie she kicked ass.” And I thought about that and realized she was right.

In “A New Hope,” Leia is captured, tortured, waits for rescue. Yes, granted, she immediately takes charge while castigating the guys, shooting Stormtroopers, and leading them into the dumpster. But once they escape the Death Star, she basically allows the Millennium Falcon to lead the bad guys right to the rebel HQ (remember, she says the Empire let them escape; it should have been obvious why) and then stands there silently hoping they don’t get blown up while a slew of men take care of business; she doesn’t have a word of dialogue for the last fifteen minutes except to welcome Luke and Han back.

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Jeremy Bastian has a new print that he's selling on his convention round:
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- Yay!
Chrissie Zullo!
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Jeff Lemire takes over Justice League Dark:
Following the JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK/I,VAMPIRE crossover in issues 7 & 8, JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK will have a new writer.

Beginning with issue #9, superstar Jeff Lemire (ANIMAL MAN, SWEET TOOTH) will be taking over the reins. We asked Lemire about following the sage Peter Milligan and what he’s got planned and here’s what he has to say:

“This is my dream gig at DC Comics, no doubt about it. The characters in Justice League Dark are my absolute favorite in the DC Comics stable, and I can’t believe I’m actually getting a chance to write John Constantine, Zatanna and Deadman (as well as a few new team members!).

I have a huge amount of respect for Peter Milligan. I’ve loved everything he’s done since his original SHADE run in the pre-Vertigo days of DC to his current run on Hellblazer and JL Dark. It’s a bit daunting to take over this title from someone who I revere as much as Peter, but at the same time I can’t help but be inspired by the work he’s already done with this book.

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Dustin Nguyen presents Justice League Beyond:
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- Francesco Francavilla posted this
WhatNot:
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Will Wheaton, Felicia Day and Jamie McKelvie are making a Fawkes comic:
At long last, it can be revealed: Felicia and I wrote a Fawkes comic together.

Felicia Day and The Guild are back, along with costar Wil Wheaton, for a brand-new story spotlighting Fawkes, the dashing, debonair, and douchey leader of the evil guild Axis of Anarchy! His relationship with Codex threatened to tear the Knights of Good apart until he was thrown off a balcony for his treatment of her. Set after season 4 of the show, this issue reveals how Fawkes deals with his split from Codex and navigates the aggressive personalities of the Axis, and follows his journey to his surprising state when he returns in season 5!

I’m incredibly proud of this, and I can’t wait for people to read it.
It comes out on May 23, and is the first issue set during the series. Covers by Paul Duffield and Emma Rios, art by Jamie McKelvie.

- Ryan Ottley does Brian Wood's DMZ for the
Sindiecate:
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Dustin Weaver's been busy on Astonishing X-Men:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp's in a half shell, Fabio Moon gets fashionable, Terry Moore goes digital, Jamie McKelvie takes the white Queen royal, Brian Wood posts massive, Charles Soule is in the library, Skottie Young breaks a bone while falling down a drain pipe, Dave Johnson pops pills, Garth Ennis talks about his shadow, Francesco Francavilla goes to space and Phil Noto captures a kodak moment.






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Dan Hipp does the Heroes in Half-Shells:
TURTLES-1

- Fabio Moon was inspired by fashion:
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- Terry Moore is putting his stuff on ComiXology. Here's why:
I’ve signed with ComiXology to make my comics available digitally. This weekend I’ll be prepping SIP for them. I’d like to get Rachel Rising to them ASAP as well.
Don’t misunderstand me as abandoning print. That’s not the case at all. I’m adding this to the mix, not replacing anything. For me, digital is another retail outlet. I want—I NEED—to be on your iPad, and ComiXology is the way to do that. I’m very happy to work with them and I’m happy they want to carry my work.
Because I have a larger readership than my direct market figures suggest, I constantly hear from readers about the difficulty in finding my books. That’s not good. Today, in the age of iPad, new readers are practically demanding I get my digital act together. And they’re right. It’s time.

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Jamie McKelvie dresses the White Queen in true royal garb:
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- Brian Wood posted the cover for The Massive #1:
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Charles Soule's 27 was selected as one of the 2012 great graphic noveld for teens by the Young Adult Library Services Association. Here's what he has to say about it:
First of all, this is a huge honor.  You look at the other works on that list, and it’s clear that 27 is in some spectacular company.  I’m very proud of everyone who worked on the book to get us there – Renzo Podesta, Scott Forbes, Shawn DePasquale on the substance of the book itself, and Jim Valentino and his crew at Shadowline and Image Comics for all their wonderful work getting 27 into the world.

The second thing that is potentially great about this selection – and I’m going to be a little mercenary here, so if you hate it when a dude gets all businesslike then click away now (no, don’t) – is that librarians all over the country and the rest of the English-speaking world use the YALSA list as a strong guide towards what they should buy and stock in their own libraries.  So, while nothing is certain, it could be a nice boost for the series as a whole.  Books these days live and die on things like this, and it can be very important to break out of the (wonderful, but not necessarily gigantic) standard audience of comics readers.  For example, I know that the Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer series from SLG was able to get into the black and continue for several volumes because of its inclusion on this list a few years ago.  So, if we’re lucky (or luckier – we’ve already been damn lucky with this series) then librarians everywhere will be foisting 27 off on unruly teens, and if they love it enough, we’ll be doing 27 for ages.

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Skottie Young has a couple of new illustrations, both worth showing off:
super_mario_bro_by_skottieyoung-d4nh5fbBone002


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Dave Johnson's latest work:
tetsuo_by_devilpig-d4nu22m

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Garth Ennis talks briefly about The Shadow with ICv2:
First of all, what attracted you to the character of The Shadow?
Great looking character- the hat, the scarf, the coat, the blazing eyes, the twin pistols.  Great era to set stories in- the 1930s, as fascinating and romantic as it gets.  The crime/pulp angle. And the power to cloud men's minds, which I'm having a lot of fun with.
 
Let’s talk about some of the original Shadow’s fantasy powers like his mind-clouding ability, do you plan to tone down or eliminate those to make the character more realistic?
No, I quite like that stuff.  He's going to be pretty much the character people remember, if a little more ruthless and dangerous. And you won't see so much of the old supporting cast.
 
Will your new Shadow comic be set in the past (1930s, 40s) or do you plan to bring the character into the present (or to put it crassly, do you have any plans to replace those twin .45’s with Glocks?)?
It's set firmly in 1938. Even if I did update it, there's no way I'd replace 45s with Glocks, ever.
 
Do you plan to retain The Shadow’s supporting cast (Moe, Margo Lane, Clyde Burke, Harry Vincent, Jericho Druke)?
The only one you'll really see is Margo Lane, who I think is a great character--a brave and resourceful young woman who almost immediately finds herself out of her depth.  Even she isn't fully aware of the lengths The Shadow will go to in order to achieve his aims.


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Francesco Francavilla posted this poster on WhatNot:
phantoms_of_space_low

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Phil Noto has a new 'photo' on his site:
tumblr_lyhdvtx7oL1qhyhwto1_1280
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp channels his inner Holmes, Terry Moore makes a few changes, Peter David discusses SOPA/PIPA, Jamie McKelvie warms up with a web, Jeff Smith teases a spark, Skottie Young celebrates Chinese New Year, Brian Wood discusses his DC break-up, Brandon Graham posts new King City art, Dave Johnson kills the punisher and Dustin Nguyen goes supernatural.




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Dan Hipp channels his inner detective this week:
SHERLOCK-1

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Terry Moore re-designed his website and showed us the cover to Rachel Rising 7:
RR7-COVER-generic

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Peter David writes an excellent article on SOPA/PIPA. Here's an excerpt, but be sure to check out the full thing:

The denizens of the Internet are, for the most part, screaming foul and bloody murder and (of course) shouting for boycotts of any and all who are in support of SOPA and PIPA. Because when you want to show that you’re a firm advocate of free expression and unimpeded distribution of information, naturally the best way to do that is to try and financially punish and shun anyone who disagrees with you.
Now I don’t pretend to understand all the ramifications of SOPA. I’ve read a lot about it. Read position papers on both sides. I’m fairly convinced that, yes, SOPA goes too far in its current language. It should not be passed in its present form, and–if it does go forward–will likely be scaled down to something more manageable.
But oddly enough, I can’t find it within me to work up much outrage over it. I suppose I should. I’m a freedom of expression guy.
And yet, here’s what I keep coming back to…
And I address this not to the corporations on either side, fighting for their personal interests. And not to the congressmen who are punting SOPA around like a political hacky sack.
No, I’m talking to the owners of the various pirate sites who decided it was fine to post my novels for free downloads.
I’m talking to the guy in Florida who decided that he was going to unilaterally create his own online library and was blithely offering copyrighted comic book material to millions of people before the Feds nailed him.
I’m talking to the denizens of a website whose cavalier disregard for restrictions on how much of a comic book one could reproduce caused their entire site to be shut down and their response was—with a complete inability to accept the results of their own actions—to blame me for it.
I’m talking to everyone on the Internet who is the first to download the latest anti-virus ware to protect their own computers and digital property, but have zero trouble feeling a sense of misplaced entitlement that enables them to rationalize swiping other people’s intellectual property or enjoying it at no cost.
And if you’re not among those people…if you are, for instance, one of the fans who writes to me to inform me about pirate sites because you understand that theft is theft…then you’re off the hook, and you can kick back and watch me talk to everyone else.
Ladies…gentlemen…guys…gals…

What the hell did you think was going to happen?

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Jamie McKelvie warmed up with Miles Morales:
tumblr_ly99diMZLn1qb0qmuo1_400

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Jeff Smith posted a teaser video for Bone: Quest for the Spark Vol. 2:


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Skottie Young sketched a dragon for the Chinese New Year:
Year of the Dragon

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Brian Wood has an interview with Weekly Crisis about a bunch of stuff. Here are his thoughts about his separation from DC:

I’m a massive fan and I count DMZ in my top 10 titles of all time. Seriously, it’s golden. I hope we’ll be seeing some HC releases of that book soon, but my question is, you wrote that book for six glorious years, do you see that ending, alongside your separation from DC, as the birthing flames for a new era of Brian Wood? Are you stretching your wings a little in terms of story type, tone, method, etc?

Wood: As far as HC releases go, I agree that would be great. But its DC’s decision and I don’t see it happening any time soon, short of a film or tv adaption being made (of which there are no plans I am aware, I should add). And yeah, a bunch of things are ending for me around the same time: DMZ, Northlanders, that Supernatural miniseries I wrote for DC, and of course my DC exclusive. I hate to see the word “separation” like that but I guess it’s fairly accurate.

RKL: Yeah, that was me just trying to be polite, ha. You tell it in your terms.

Wood: The situation is a little bit like being dumped by a girl but never really getting an explanation as to why. At some point, if only for your own sanity, you have to shrug and accept the situation and move on. I was exclusive for five of the six years I wrote for DC and I gave them 25 volumes of material. I think I did a pretty good job.

So with all of these books ending, it makes sense to take advantage of this new chapter to take a hard look at what I do, and what I want to do, and how I can ‘level up’ in terms of projects and craft. What 2012 is going to be is a year where I launch a ton of new projects, all with a renewed energy and focus, and try a bunch of new things, one of them being a lot more work for hire. I had actually made that decision last year, to work on some superhero books and had every intention of doing that for DC. But they ultimately didn’t want me to do that. Marvel did, though. You’re going to see a lot more X-Men work from me soon. And from Dark Horse.

RKL: We’ll chat Marvel in a bit, let’s first talk about Conan. You’re adapting the ‘Queen of the Black Coast’ story. However, this isn’t a straight up adaptation – this whole run is stretching to 25 issues. Why did you feel a two year run was the best way to tackle this tale which most would have read over the course of a weekend?


Wood: I think I read the original Queen Of The Black Coast book in an hour. It’s very short. The 25-issue thing was Dark Horse’s idea, it was part of the pitch they gave me explaining the project. And it makes sense, because in the original text, mention is made of an extended period of time – years – when Conan and Belit sailed around as pirates and did their thing. It’s essentially the second act of the story completely skipped over. And that’s where the bulk of my 25 issues will take place, in that space with adventures written from scratch. It’s a great thing, actually, because in doing that you can really breathe life into their relationship, all the ups and downs and successes and tragedies that any relationship has, so in the end everything becomes that much more poignant and meaningful and formative for Conan.

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Brandon Graham posted a ton of great stuff, including this title image for the Image King City collection:

titlekang

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Dave Johnson posted a preview of the final Punisher Max cover:
my_final_punisher_cover_by_devilpig-d4ndtjr

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Dustin Nguyen posted the cover to Supernatural #6:
supernatural_cover_6_by_duss005-d4n7903

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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp ask's what time is it, Fabio Moon is amazing, Warren Ellis talks about the importance of the comic script, Jim Rugg get's his Street Fighter on, Eric Canate and Sean Phillips show us their processes, Becky Cloonan previews another page of Conan, Dave Johnson likes lobster, Robert Kirkman is a thief, Peter Nguyen likes the cat, Andrew Robinson gets it on like Donky Kong, Hickman talks Ultimates, Ryan Ottley joins the Academy and Phil Noto gets out the claws.





- We kick off with our weekly dose of
Hipp:
OHMYGLOB


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Fabio Moon has few new pieces to show off, including this one:
6680893223_2fe1050135_o

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Warren Ellis discusses the function of a comic script:
This may seem obvious, but give me a minute. I think it’s often misunderstood.
A script is a set of instructions to the artist(s), letterer, editor, colourist if applicable, and designer if applicable. This set of instructions is intended to present the mechanics of your story with the greatest possible clarity. Adhering to a precise format, as in screenwriting, is not necessary. Presenting a script whose operation is clear to everybody is the requirement.
This set of instructions must surround your story to the extent that you feel necessary and comfortable. Some writers produce reams of panel description because they require fine control of the artist, letterer and colourist to meet their vision of the story. Some writers boil their description down to a telegram because they require only that the most basic requirements of the panel be met in order to achieve their goals.
Both methods, however, and everything in between, are about manipulation of the artist. That sounds grim, doesn’t it?

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Jim Rugg designed a poster for the Street Fighter IV World Championships:
6684003301_40a35a2385_o

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Eric Canete has begun posting videos of his process, including this one:

'HoN' 01 110112 - 13:33.9 from Eric Canete on Vimeo.



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Becky Cloonan posted yet another Conan preview page:
6676169391_02176258c5_o

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Dave Johnson reveals the cover of Lobster Johnson #2:
lobster_johnson_issue_no__2_cover_by_devilpig-d4mgugo

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Robert Kirkman chatted with EW about Thief of Thieves:
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So what else can you tell us about Thief of Thieves?


ROBERT KIRKMAN: Well, it’s a fine comic book, if I do say so myself. It’s somewhat of a crime-caper comic about a professional thief named Conrad Paulson. He is one of the greatest thieves who’s ever lived, but he’s gotten to a point in his life where he realizes that he’s chosen his professional life over his family life and greatly regrets that. He’s got an adult son who is kind of following in his footsteps but doing a horrible job, and he has an estranged wife that he is still very much in love with. Our story picks up when he is trying to turn his back on his profession and rekindle his relationship with his wife and trying to fix his son’s horrible predicament.

You’ve said that the way you worked on this was inspired by your experience in the writers’ room of the Walking Dead… I almost said the Grateful Dead then, which might have been even more interesting…

[Laughs] It takes just
three weeks of us not doing interviews every week about the show for you to forget the name!

Yep, sorry. But could you elaborate on what you meant by that?


Absolutely. I’ve been spending a lot of time in writers’ rooms since the very first season of the Walking Dead and I’ve been somewhat enchanted by the process. It’s a very cool thing to have writers working hard to improve a story together as a group. It’s not something that usually happens in comics. So I got the idea to do the series that way, to have an overall story and then get a sort of writers’ room of people together to help map out what’s going on with the characters and tighten the story up here and there. It’s kind of a cool little experiment.

To clarify, this process has involved more people than just yourself and [Thief of Thieves writing collaborator] Nick Spencer?

Yeah, yeah, yeah. There’s a few other people involved, but we haven’t announced their names must yet. But the first six issues are written by Nick, based on my initial series outline and quite a bit of conversations between the two of us. That kicks us off and then we’ll be rotating from arc-to-arc with various writers that are in the group.


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Peter Nguyen posted this Catwoman:
tumblr_lxlhs1hVOK1qeegaqo1_500

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Andrew Robinson got it on like Donky Kong for his WhatNot post this week:
donkey bong

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Jonathan Hickman spoke with CBR about taking on The Ultimates:
When he accepted the assignment to write "The Ultimates," Hickman knew he would be writing the adventures of some pretty powerful characters, so the writer wanted foes that could test the mettle of these formidable heroes. To that end, he created the Children of Tomorrow, a race of humans who, thanks to high technology, have evolved several centuries in the span of less than a year. The developer of that technology and leader of the Children is the Ultimate Universe's incarnation of Reed Richards, who recently decided that he's going to solve the world's problems regardless of who gets killed or destroyed in the process.
Hickman, who writes the monthly Marvel Universe adventures of Reed Richards in "Fantastic Four" and "FF," welcomed the chance to pen his villainous, teenaged Ultimate Universe counterpart in "The Ultimates." "He kind of exists as the logical extension of, 'What if Reed made completely non-empathic decisions?' So what if they were bad for the rabble? He's a fascinating character," Hickman told CBR News. "Brian Bendis introduced the idea of a villainous Reed in his 'Ultimate Doom' trilogy, and I thought it was perfect. The first thing I said to [Brian] was, 'You're not going to kill him, right?' He told me he wasn't, and the end of 'Ultimate Doom' worked out perfectly because we were able to use it to set up our 'Ultimates' relaunch.
"I think Ultimate Reed is a fantastic character," Hickman continued. "The Children in general are a good Ultimatization of what was a really great Mike Carey idea, The Children of the Vault, introduced in his 'Super Novas' arc of 'X-Men.' I think he, and they, make for a different kind of villain than what we've seen, in that Reed and his followers are essentially, completely, utterly and totally correct. They do not see these as evil decisions. They just happen to be bad for the apes that are left on the planet," Hickman said with a laugh. "They're centuries more advanced than every one else. Just look how far the human race has come in the last 20 years compared to the 60 before, then to the 100 before that. And, in parallel with that, you can see that we're rapidly evolving culturally, as well, even though it doesn't feel like it some days. Reed and the Children represent that to a ridiculous degree, and it's just a whole lot of fun."

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Ryan Ottley painted the White Violin for Sindiecate:
tumblr_lxoxdome7F1r1bm5lo1_1280

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Phil Noto has heaps of great new stuff this week, including these beauties:
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Sean Phillips shows as his process for Fatale art:
13.1.1213.1.12a14.1.12
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp incorporates monsters, Terry Moore talks digital, Jamie McKelvie goes to mutant school, Chrissie Zullo makes a grown man squeal, BKV talks SAGA, Becky Cloonan goes retro, Dave Johnson brings the funny, Joe Keatinge talks superheroes, Dustin Nguyen likes red and Rafael Albuqurque draws the Apocalypse.





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Dan Hipp kicks us off as always with this tribute to Monsters Inc.:
MONSTERSINC


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Terry Moore posted a great conversation on Twitter about digital distribution:
The canary in the mine for books is music sales. Digital sales topped physical for 1st time in 2011. http://tinyurl.com/6vbfb3b BUT…
Analysts say digital sales is NOT where music is headed, but instead to streaming access. New generatino doesn’t care about owning, just access.
Notice that music digital sales are driven by the youth market, hence who’s on top, like Lady Gaga & Adele. Comics needs youth to survive digital.
So, like music, digital book unit sales will someday give way to flat fee access to a lot. This means a giant is needed to hub the books.
@polianarchy Like public libraries? —Talking about how to sell stories in the first release. Libraries may go from book buy to access fee.
Whether unit sales or streaming access, the income stream for writers needs definition. We need a breakthru artist to show how.
Books have 1 BIG advantage over music: we are lossless digital files. We look better on the devices than in print. We need to trumpet that.
Comics can look beautiful on devices yet still be too lo-res to print. That is ideal, & inherent to our medium. Digital is perfect for us.
This is all good for the reader on the go, but nothing compares to the physical. Digital vs print is like porn vs a real lover.


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Jamie McKelvie previews X-Men Year One:
9288f5ec2a7711e1a87612313804ec91_7

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Chrissie Zullo posted a bunch more commissions, including this Rose Red, owned by yours truly:
RoseRedTimLR-1

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Brian K Vaughan talks SAGA with USA Today:
After creating the acclaimed comic-book series Y: The Last Man and Ex Machina in the 2000s, the scribe shifted his focus to film and TV, joining the hit TV series Lost for three seasons. With Saga, an Image Comics series making its debut in March, he's returning to the industry where he first made his mark.

"Comics are in my blood. I've been dying to get back to it," Vaughan says.
Admittedly a "big
Star Wars nerd," Vaughan has channeled his inner George Lucas to create a sci-fi/fantasy epic. It follows two soldiers — a ram-horned man named Marko and a winged female warrior named Alana — from different sides of an intergalactic war who fall in love and decide to have a baby.

That's when the real adventure begins, as the new family is pursued by everyone in the universe, Vaughan says. "You'll get a nice mixture of some bounty hunters, monsters and all sorts of lovely threats."
That's all he's saying for now because he wants to keep some surprises for the fans who have been clamoring for a comic from him for four years.
"I just miss the days from when I was a kid where you could pick up a No. 1 comic and it's not a reboot or a relaunch or something," says Vaughan. "It was just wall-to-wall new."


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Becky Cloonan posted a veritable feast of new art, including this collaboration with Mike Moses and a tribute to the old atari game 'Adventure':
tumblr_lxac62YGGt1qfk0qro1_500
tumblr_lxhyn7cYl51qgf3d3o1_500adventure

- Dave Johnson posted this funny on his DeviantArt page:
armageddon_fail_by_devilpig-d4ljgjt

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Joe Keatinge talks about the difference between the superheroes at Marvel and DC and the heroes at Image comics:
When I was a kid I never thought about comics the way I do now.
Yes, they’re equally on my mind as they were then in terms of consistency. Comics took up the vast majority of my thought processes. They still do. However, how I absorbed and understood them has changed so dramatically. A lot of that is age. Some of it is circumstance.
Like a lot of people, I came up loving superhero comics. Like a lot of kids, my ability to purchase them was entirely due to the allowance and rides to the comic shop afforded to me by my parents. I was usually only able to buy a comic or two at a time. I was never there on a weekly basis. My consumption until I was old enough to earn my own money or haul myself around was very limited for a good chunk of my life. So, I bought whatever superhero comics I could. I just looked at the others.
The experience was vastly different.


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Dustin Nguyen threw up this beauty:
year_of_the_dragon_1_by_duss005-d4l80t2

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Rafael Albuqurque posted this on the What Not blog:
Apocalipse
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp makes Batman chummy with his rogue's gallery, Jeff Lemire talks about how awesome he is, Mike Choi does Jeff Smith's RASL, Kurtis J Wiebe and Riley Rossmo talk horror, Jeremy Bastion is insane as always, Chrissie Zullo does X-Factor, Dave Johnson goes to space man and Michael Avon Oeming draws Jonah Hex.







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Dan Hipp has a ton of new work, including Batman with his enemies:
BATFRIENDS

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Jeff Lemire talked with CBR about Sweet Tooth, Animal Man and other things. He also gave them a 6 page preview of his new book 'The Underwater Welder':
In "Sweet Tooth" you've been telling a wonderful story in "The Taxidermist" arc, which was illustrated by "Revolver" & "Superspy" creator Matt Kindt. The arc goes 100 or so years in the past, to tell what could be considered the secret origin of "Sweet Tooth." Was it always your plan to tell the origin of "Sweet Tooth" this way?
Jeff Lemire: "The Taxidermist," the way it ended up, was never something that I had planned. It wasn't part of my initial plans for the series at all. It was something that kind of organically popped up as I was working on the "Dangerous Species" arc. Unlike other parts of the book that I've known since the beginning -- and I can't wait to get to -- that wasn't one of them but once I did think of it, I was really excited about it. I am pretty happy with how it turned out and it's really only scratching the surface of the story's origin. If anything, it probably adds more questions to the mythology but it does include some answers too.

Has Gus' origin changed since the series was originally conceived?
No, I think what has changed is how I was going to tell it. Some details have become -- well, it's hard to answer some of these questions without giving away too much but Gus' origin and the origin of the plague have always been a bit fluid. The thing that I have always known is the end of the book. And the end of the book isn't a big reveal of how it all happened. The end of the book is something else. It's more emotional and more character driven. So again, his origin and the origin of the plague have always been more fluid and it continues to develop as I get closer to some bigger reveals.

In the next arc, we return to present day. Obviously Thacker and the other characters from "The Taxidermist" are all dead, but will the events of that arc be explored moving forward?
Yes, for sure. Events and characters from that arc will connect directly to our present day cast. Specifically, Dr. Singh is going to start to uncover some of that past and it's going to lead him to figure some things out. That's all coming. And it's going to start interconnecting pretty soon.
The next arc, which runs through "Sweet Tooth" #29-33, is a five-part thing and after that, the story really amps up and all the answers really start coming out.
prv10984_pg5

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Jeff Smith points to SindiCate art with a RASL theme. Here's Mike Choi's:
SindieRasl1

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Kurtis J Weibe and Riley Rossmo chat with Fangoria about Green Wake. Here's and excerpt:
FANG: After illustrating such comics as COWBOY NINJA VIKING and PROOF, how did you approach illustrating GREEN WAKE and its premise?
ROSSMO: I needed to make comics that were really purely emotional reactions to the script. GREEN WAKE is all the sadness, passion and anger I experienced and poured out onto the page. PROOF was a traditional comic experience, from script, pencils, ink, colors, and lettering. I didn’t have much input on the script for COWBOY NINJA VIKING. I just handled the visuals. GREEN WAKE is more of me in terms of story and visual expression. Since I do so much of the art than anything else I’ve worked on, I think in terms of the finished page while I work on it, instead of just penciling or inking.
FANG: The forgotten town of Green Wake can be seen as Hell, Purgatory, or an entire imaginary world created from Morley Mack’s troubled mind. Tell me about how you both developed the town of Green Wake.
WIEBE: Originally, the aforementioned short story version was about a town centered on a cult that had kidnapped a young woman. The story would’ve followed a man hired to track down the woman and rescue her. All the while, he was encountering some really weird situations at the hands of the cult.
Honestly, I’m not sure how that transformed into what GREEN WAKE is now, but the weirdness is what made the cut. We wanted the town to be as much a character in the series as the people who lived there, and even if all the characters found resolution, there would be this lingering question of what the hell Green Wake was. We talked for hours about the town, establishing the rules; why it’s there, how people get there, and for what reason.
Since we worked so closely together on the development of the series, it was easy to collaborate on meshing the art and the writing, because we both intrinsically knew what worked and what didn’t.
ROSSMO: We discussed a visual vocabulary at length and I did a bunch of paintings. We watched a number of films (CITY OF LOST CHILDREN, NAKED LUNCH, and DARK CITY), but the biggest single influence in Green Wake’s creation was TWIN PEAKS, and some personal struggles we were experiencing/discussing at the time of inception. Marshall Arisman’s paintings inspired the look of the art, as well as Bill Sienkiewicz’s STRAY TOASTERS.
- Jeremy Bastian offered this tasty nugget:
Pasted Graphic

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Chrissie Zullo shows of some new artwork, including this X-Factor commission:
xfactorcolorsLR



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Dave Johnson posted covers for Spaceman #4 & #5. Here's 5:
spaceman_no__5_by_devilpig-d4jenqn

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Michael Avon Oeming goes western with this pic of Jonah Hex:
HEX
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp joins the Parks & Rec department, Warren Ellis gives an update on Fell, Jeff Smith champions graphic novels, Jeff Lemire previews a cover, Charles Soule talks up BKV, Michael Alan Nelson burns stuff, Rafael Grampa also previews a cover, Becky Cloonan draws a creepy dude, Dave Johnson lives in the 70's, Peter Nguyen draws the Justice League, Sana Takeda also previews a cover and Michael Oeming gets the Led out.



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Dan Hipp has a whole heap of new images, including this Ron Swanson mask:
SWANSON

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Warren Ellis provides this little update on Fell:
I am told that the first eight issues of FELL are on sale at Comixology right now, 99 US cents a pop.
Ben still has the script for issue 10, and I’ll go ahead and finish issue 11 when he gets more than halfway through 10’s script.  And we’ll move on like that until we have enough of the intended final seven issues to go to market with.

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Jeff Smith took part in an interesting discussion on graphic novels and there place in the classroom. Here's the video:


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Jeff Lemire unveils the cover for Sweet Tooth 29 by Travel Foreman:
SWTO_Cv29_var

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Charles Soule write about his love for Brian Vaughan:
This post was spurred, in part, by this article, about the upcoming debut of Brian K. Vaughan’s new title Saga, with Image Comics.  I read the article, and I looked at the preview pages, and I was struck by a feeling I hadn’t felt in a while – I’m genuinely excited in an unabashed fanboy way for the debut of that book.  BKV (as he’s known around the comics biz) is one of my all-time favorite writers in comics, up there with Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman and Garth Ennis.  The other thing he shares with those folks is that I haven’t met him in person (although we’ve emailed a few times.)  More on why that matters in a moment.
I thought for a minute about how thrilled I am that soon I’ll be able to read new comics work from an ultra-talented writer whose stuff I’ve loved in the past, and was surprised that I hadn’t felt exactly that way in a bit.  Now, that absolutely does NOT mean that I haven’t been excited about new work from other creators.  I read tons of comics, and I absolutely get jazzed when I see a new issue from Jim Zubkavich or Josh Fialkov or B. Clay Moore or Nathan Edmondson or Cullen Bunn or any of the many other writers whose work I love.  The difference is that I know those guys personally, in either a big or a small way.  And while I can’t totally pin down why it’s different when we’re all sort of putting out work together as opposed to me just being a guy at home finding new books and digging them, it absolutely is.  I suppose it’s the difference between on a sports team and rooting for it to win and rooting for the Detroit Lions.  You can do both, but the reasoning behind each is different, as is the way each one feels.

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Michael Alan Nelson offered a limited, slabbed variant of Valen the outcast to retailers for buying 200 issue 1's. He burned the rest. here's the video:


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Rafael Grampa posted his cover for Voodoo Child #1:
vc1_cover

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Becky Cloonan threw up a few pics, including this one:
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Dave Johnson added this Jimi Hendrix artwork to his DeviantArt:
jimi_hendrix_for_what_not_by_devilpig-d4immnn

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Peter Nguyen drew the Justice League:
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Sana Takeda adds to this week's cover reveals, with her cover for Fathom: Kiani #0:
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Michael Oeming provides my favourite piece this week - Jimmy Page!
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp goes Psycho, Sana Takeda shows off, JH Williams III talks success, Ben Templesmith re-uses an old sketch, Brian Wood talks digital, Jeremy Bastion is an art freak, Andy Diggle gives advice, Dave Johnson releases his inner fury, Michael Alan Nelson talks names and Dustin Nguyen paints Batman.



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Dan Hipp has three new pics this week, this one entitled "It's Psycho Time (a Boy's Best Friend is his Mother)
PSYCHOTIME

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Sana Takeda has some previews of x-23 18:
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JH Williams III points to an interview with CBR about Batwoman and success. Here's a tease:
CBR News: How does it feel with "Batwoman" officially a critical and commercial success now that the first three issues are out? Is that satisfying to know that the book was off the shelves for almost two years and yet its been received again so well?
JH Williams III: Yeah, certainly. I really didn't expect it to be. I knew it would do well, but I didn't think it was going to be so warmly received. It did really well in sales, and then the critical response was overwhelmingly positive. It was surprising. I expected it to have a lot more push and pull than it did. It was really heartwarming and gratifying.
W. Haden Blackman: The fan reaction has been really positive, but I think we've been bringing in new readers to comics, which we didn't necessarily expect. All the reaction we've gotten, either through email or our website or events like this, it feels like there's a large number of people who either haven't been reading comics in a long time or who have never read comics before and have started with Batwoman.
Williams: Female readers, too.
Many fans were a bit worried that it took so long for "Batwoman" to come out after it had been announced by DC. It seemed that people assumed you had been working on it since the end of your "Detective Comics" run, but was that really the case?
Williams: Well, when Greg [Rucka] decided to leave DC Comics and they approached us about taking over ["Batwoman"], there was literally only three days before the announcement was made to the public that we were taking it over. Nothing had been written, and we didn't even know what the plot was going to be and all that stuff. We needed time to develop that. It was misleading to fans, in some ways. People had the idea that we had been working on it already, but we were actually far from any launch date, for sure.

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Ben Templesmith posted his Christmas commission prices as well as this Boba Fett:
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Brian Wood writes a very interesting article about digital sales, creators and retailers. Here's the tail end, but do read the whole thing:
No sane creator, or publisher, wants to see comic shops hurt.  We all have emotional connections to them, to the idea of them, and we count owners and employees as personal friends.  We aren’t looking for digital to steal customers away from shops, but rather to be an additive thing, to be an additional source of income.  To simply switch a current print consumer to a digital consumer does not solve any problems!  It benefits no one at all.  It will not save us.
When I thought my Dark Horse comics were to be sold digitally at 1.99, I devised a plan to make the print singles a luxury object specifically for the benefit of the retailer community, to make it a unique book with truly added-value content so that the two formats would not be in competition for the same product.  So that the “higher priced” print single would be justified in the eyes of retailers and readers.  Not sure if this plan is scrapped or not, but I am not the boogeyman here, and when I see these boycott threats, still being issued even after Dark Horse clarified their plans… well, its hard not to feel like an innocent bystander, a bit of collateral damage.  My new books at risk even before they launch.  Christ, I’m just trying to make it all work out for everyone.


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Jeremy Bastian has a boatload of new art and commissions on his blog, including this Cursed Pirate Girl sketch:
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Andy Diggle has this piece of sage advice to writers of 2000ad:
Take the "twist ending" of your Future Shock and put it at the bottom of page one. Then explore the ramifications. Instead of the punchline, make the twist your premise. Trust me, your story will be 1000% more interesting, and more personal. Find your own voice.

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Dave Johnson as some new picks on his DeviantArt page including this Nick Fury commission:
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- Michael Alan Nelson talks about naming the characters in Valen the Outcast and shows of a bit of concept art:
For me, naming characters is one of the most difficult aspects of creating a story.  Granted, I could just go to the Big Book of Baby Names and pick one at random (I’ve done it many times before), but most writers prefer to have the name really speak to who the character is, either through its meaning or its phonetic quality.  When it’s done wrong, well, a name is just a name.  But when done right, the perfect name can tell you everything about the character before you even meet her on the page.
Coming up with ‘Valen Brand’ as the name of our hero in Valen the Outcast was a group effort, and not an easy one.  We bandied about nearly 50 possibilities, and while many of them were good names, none of them were quite right.  We wanted a name that sounded regal and strong without coming across as too guttural.  If the name sounded too harsh, the character would come across as brutish;  just a big guy with a big sword who kills things.  Which is certainly what Valen is, but he also used to be king.  He’s a thinker.  He knows strategy, diplomacy, law, and history.  We had to make sure that his name reflected his intelligence as well as his strength.  Or, at the very least, sounded strong and intelligent.
OUTCAST - character studies[3]

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Dustin Nguyen painted this Batman:
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Creator Roundup

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This week, Dan Hipp goes were the wild things are, Charles Soule gives free advice, Jo Chen paints a giant axe, Peter David stands up for nerd rights, Becky Cloonan and Brian Wood tease Conan, Jim Rugg sells some girl on girl, Peter Nguyen paints a red, conical bra, Alan Moore speaks, which is always good, Dave Johnson Does not Jest, Sara Pichelli listens to Karma Police, Cameron Stewart is not just an artist, and Ben Templesmith defaces classic literature.



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Dan Hipp wishes everyone a happy thanksgiving:
MARIOPARTY

- Charles Soule gives some advice on writing. It's pretty good. Here's some of it.
I was asked a question today by one of my Facebook friends, a very nice person who used to work in comic book retailing but whose shop closed down within the last six months or so.  This person (and yes, I’m being gender-neutral, so please forgive some slightly tortured phrasing) used to be able to read all the free comics they could stand, and now has a big, story-sized gap.  They thought they might fill it by trying to write, and asked me if I had any tips for starting to write stories.  It was clear that they wanted to write a book of some kind, fiction, and I this is what I told them, slightly edited:
  • - So, writing a book.  First of all, it’s hard, and it takes a long time.  My suggestion is to start with something small, just a short story.  Think of them as a sketch (or more realistically, a series of sketches) before you jump into the main event that is writing a full-length novel or comic.
  • - I would structure each story as a separate exercise, within which you’re working on a different element of telling a story.  Each one will help you to understand how your brain comes up with ideas, and will also limber up your brain so it can come up with ideas.

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Joss Whedon's blog points to Jo Chen's cover for the first Buffy Season 9 HC:
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- Peter David finished his Fan/Pro bill of rights. Here's a morsel, but you definitely wanna check out the full thing.

Right the First
Fans and Pros have a right to a mutual understanding of what is expected and required from each when it comes to the giving and receiving of autographs.
1) Fans have a right to know as early as possible—preferably in the convention advertising and certainly no later than via clearly posted signs at the pro’s table—what will and will not be autographed. (EX: only materials purchased at the table as opposed to items that the fans have already acquired.)
2) Pros have a right not to be embarrassed by, or be made uncomfortable with, unauthorized materials brought for signature (EX: that jerk who brought Emma Watson an 8 x 10 of a paparazzi photograph angled up her dress) or the nature of the object to be autographed (EX: body parts). By the same token, pros should be willing to sign any material that they themselves are selling. If the pro charges for autographs, there should be no hidden costs; a price list, while not required, is extremely helpful.
3) Particularly during advertised, limited-time autograph sessions, the pro should have the right to not have any one individual attempt to monopolize his time. For that matter, the fans have the right not to have to stand there and watch some guy tell the pro his life’s story. In cases of convention-sponsored autographs sessions, conventions should provide one or more monitors to be responsible for keeping the line moving so that pros don’t have to be the bad guy and fans don’t have to shout at their fellow fans to keep moving, and to cap the line so that the pro is not required to remain overtime.
4) Unless there is prior notification otherwise, fans have a right to have their books personalized. If they desire personalization, they should say so up front so the pro doesn’t have to guess. Nor should pros have to guess at the spelling of names. Don’t assume the pro will figure out that your name has a silent “q.” Complicated names should be presented on pieces of paper for convenience. If your name is on your badge but it’s spelled wrong, do not expect the pro to intuit that. Pros should not be asked to sign potentially inflammatory messages because the fan thinks it “will be funny” or “he’ll appreciate it.” (EX: Dear Jim: Why didn’t you show up, you asshole? Best wishes.)
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Becky Cloonan gives us a sneak peak of Conan:

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- Becky and
Brian Wood had a chat with Newsarama about Conan:

Nrama: There’s a variety of different breeds of pirate. How’d you go to pinpoint just who Bêlit is and what she’d be like?
Wood: I think its safe to say that Bêlit is in a category of her own. Also, I’m not writing her as any sort of pirate stereotype. There is actually so much information in the first part of the source material, especially when you are poring over every line like a crazy person like I am. Every adjective is a clue, a piece of the puzzle, and there is a huge amount of subtext there. But again, it’s a short story and we have 25 issues to fill, so the real trick is to build Bêlit out from what she is already into something much more well-rounded and complete. It seems like sacrilege to even say such a thing, but it’s true.
In her, you have a pretty cutthroat pirate; you also have a demanding queen, and an incredibly sexual person. She draws a bead on Conan (and to a degree finds a way to fetishize his ethnicity, which is a fascinating thing as a writer to play with) and goes after him hardcore. But that’s just the first step. How do they, as a couple, evolve over some two years? What s it about her that makes him want to stick around for that long, and vice versa?
Cloonan: Bêlit is a little tricky, visually- she’s this tough as nails pirate woman who runs around topless and kills people. At first you think, how can this not be awesome to draw? But she could easily turn into a character who’s only purpose is to be cheesecake, the chick who is clinging to Conan’s leg. I think the real trick with Bêlit is to really show her as the driving force of this story. She is the most feared pirate in the waters surrounding Kush. She is frightening and powerful and sexy, and I’m trying my hardest to make her all of these things. Without Bêlit, this story would be nothing.

- Jim Rugg has a new Afrodisiac print on his website:
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Peter Nguyen paints an awesome Wonder Woman:
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Alan Moore is a guy that you know is going to say something good every time he opens his mouth. He opened it for the Guardian - heres a taster:
It all comes back to Moore – a private man with knotty greying hair and a magnificent beard, who prefers to live without an internet connection and who has not had a working telly for months "on an obscure point of principle" about the digital signal in his hometown of Northampton. He has never yet properly commented on the Vendetta mask phenomenon, and speaking on the phone from his home, Moore seems variously baffled, tickled, roused and quite pleased that his creation has become such a prominent emblem of modern activism.
"I suppose when I was writing V for Vendetta I would in my secret heart of hearts have thought: wouldn't it be great if these ideas actually made an impact? So when you start to see that idle fantasy intrude on the regular world… It's peculiar. It feels like a character I created 30 years ago has somehow escaped the realm of fiction."
"That smile is so haunting," says Moore. "I tried to use the cryptic nature of it to dramatic effect. We could show a picture of the character just standing there, silently, with an expression that could have been pleasant, breezy or more sinister." As well as the mask, Occupy protesters have taken up as a marrying slogan "We are the 99%"; a reference, originally, to American dissatisfaction with the richest 1% of the US population having such vast control over the country. "And when you've got a sea of V masks, I suppose it makes the protesters appear to be almost a single organism – this "99%" we hear so much about. That in itself is formidable. I can see why the protesters have taken to it."

- Dave Johnson shows off his cover for the upcoming Abe Sapien collection:
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Sara Pichelli has been listening to Karma Police:
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Cameron Stewart has a chat with Comics Alliance about working with Mike Mignola, the upcoming year of the monster and writing comics:
CA: You're best known to comics readers as an artist, having drawn to much acclaim books like Seaguy, Batman and Robin, Catwoman and Suicide Girls (a favorite among ComicsAlliance readers). But you have written comics, perhaps most notably your webcomic SinTitulo. Can you tell us a bit more about your writing background, aspirations and how you came to be co-writer with Mignola on B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth: Exorcism?

CS: I've always had the intention to write as well as draw - the first portfolio that I distributed when seeking comics work included a small mini-comic that I wrote and drew. But in the course of my professional career I've only ever been hired as an illustrator, mainly because I've never really actively sought writing work because I've been focusing on improving my drawing abilities. Now that I'm confident that I'm at least competent as an illustrator and visual storyteller, I'm interested in creating my own stories. To meet this need, several years ago I began working on my online graphic novel SinTitulo as an exercise for myself in developing my writing skills and crafting a long-form story. The response has been very positive, culminating in several award nominations and winning a 2010 Eisner Award for Best Digital Comic.

Around the same time, I was hired by Ubisoft (along with my studio mate Karl Kerschl) to produce a comic based on their Assassin's Creed video game series, and despite being approached mainly for our illustrative skills, Ubisoft also granted us the opportunity to write the story. Again we were met with strong critical response, with many reviews praising the story as much as the artwork. Shortly after publication of Assassin's Creed: The Fall, Scott Allie contacted me and asked if I'd be interested in returning to the B.P.R.D. universe and taking on writer/artist duties.

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Ben Templesmith painted a cover of Bram Stoker's Dracula - he literally painted it right on the cover of the book.
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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp solemnly swears he’s up to no good, Mark Waid talks about Marcos Martin, Dave Johnson gets the ink out, Charles Soule talks about being helpful, Becky Cloonan goes vampire, Eduardo Risso talks about Brian Azzarello, Chrissie Zullo captures dualism, Christos Gage writes angsty teens and Peter Nguyen graws a seascape.



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Dan Hipp is up to no good:
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Mark Waid has a chat with ComiXology about Daredevil and Marcos Martin:
Speaking of the "we", can you talk a little bit about the artists on the book, Paolo Rivera and Marcos Martin? Were those guys already on board with Daredevil before you? Was it a package deal when you started talking to Tom Brevoort about the book?

Yeah. Either Brevoort or Wacker or both assembled them, I'd bet Wacker. Marcos and Wacker are pretty good pals, and both artists were already on board by the time I signed on. I couldn't have been happier with that. I'd never worked with Paolo before, and I was a little nervous because I wasn't terribly familiar with what the process of working together was going to be like. I met with him and at the Orlando Megacon last year and he got it immediately, I knew we were on the same wavelength because he was all about storytelling. He didn't care about splash pages, he didn't care about some two-page spread he could sell for a lot of money at conventions. He wanted to tell a story.

Now, both of these guys are suffering through the adjustment I'm having to make as a guy who has written 22 page stories his entire career and is suddenly having to write twenty page stories. It probably doesn't seem like it would be that big a deal, and I'm not whining...but it is a bigger deal than it would seem. Every single storytelling rhythm I have, having written comics for 25 years for a 22 page beat....it's instinct by now, my gut knows where I should be by page six, where I should be by page 17. All those rules are out the window, and unfortunately for both Paolo and Marcos, I've been temporarily solving this problem by cramming 22 page stories into 20 pages. That's not a solution. They, to their credit, have gotten my back 100% and they are not afraid of denser material. They still find ways to open it up and surprise me, Marcos in particular.

It seems to me like people still haven't grasped how special Marcos Martin is.

He's groundbreaking. He's absolutely groundbreaking in the way he approaches storytelling, in the way he approaches layout. When I work with him it's a very collaborative process. I was giving him plot first, dialog after the pencils just to give him a little bit more elbow room to storytell but he found it was slowing him down because he really felt like he needed more of the details. So I started giving him full scripts, and even with a full script, he would blow it all up and then put it back together. Which is all fine! He would ask first, sure, but he was turning out these layouts that were moving things around, putting in a new emphasis. The opening to his first full issue was originally a two page sequence that he turned into four, with Daredevil reaching down for the flash drive, the lion growling and stuff. That was his invention, that was not quite what I had called for.


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Dave Johnson draws a sumi girl:
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Charles Soule has a cracker of a post on helping out. here’s a taste:
Sort of an odd post to write, because the subject matter is a bit of a tightrope walk.  I’ve been extremely fortunate with comics writing so far – I’ve had some incredible opportunities, and I think a large part of that has been that I’ve had a few people in the business who were further ahead in their careers than I, who decided to help me out in large or small ways.  That could be anything from advice on the business to a critique to a publishing deal.  There are a ton of people I could name, but my list is starting to get so long that I’d be in danger of skipping important people.  Basically, my feeling is that you don’t get very far in comics if you don’t get the occasional leg up from someone higher up the ladder.
I think that it’s important to pay that forward – Haley Joel Osment and Kevin Spacey taught me
that much, at least.  (They also showed me a bit about telling believable stories to police detectives and a great deal about how to craft a successful performance as a sad, child-sized robot.)
(Yeah, that was an A.I. shoutout.)
Anyway, when I get asked to look something over, or to give advice on breaking in, or to talk about page rates or similar questions, I do my best to find time to answer.  I did a long Q&A session over on reddit’s comic book board recently, which was great because I was able to reach thousands of people in the same time it would have taken me to explain all that stuff to just a single person over email or at a con.  You can see that here, if you’re interested.


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Becky Cloonan posted the cover for the upcoming Dracula book she provided illustrations for:
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Eduardo Risso sat down with Comics Bulletin to discuss Spaceman, 100 Bullets and working with Azzarello:
Chudolinski: What is your working relationship with Azzarello like? I think most people tend to think the writer pens the script, hands it to the artist and that's all. Nevertheless, I get the feeling that might not have been the case here. How did the two of you trade ideas back and forth while working on particular stories?
Risso: Building a team is not simple. That's why, in my case, when I see that the relationship works I try to keep it. I believe that, over time, a good team can get wonderful products from which we all win -- companies, readers and ourselves [the creators].
Now, my relationship with the writers has always been the same. I try to show that they can trust my graphic narrative [for everything] that they want to tell. That is, if the writer asks me [for] A and B, I give A, B, C and D, so that he can pay more attention to the dialogue and [trust me completely for] the task of graphic sequences.
Chudolinski: In 100 Bullets, were there stories that got cancelled and were never published? Did DC Comics ever censor your work?
Risso: There were no canceled or censored stories. We always had complete freedom on the part of the company.
Chudolinski: You're one of the few artists working in superhero comics these days that has fans both within the mainstream DC/Marvel world and the European comics world, especially among the Italian and Spanish fan bases. If we can get you to speculate for a minute, what is it about your art that draws in readers from so many different geographical areas?
Risso: I can’t say that there is anything in particular [that I do] to attract readers. I would summarize in a few words -- professionalism and respect.
Chudolinski: What are some of the movies and books that have had an influence on your work and your life?
Risso: [With] Spielberg's ET, I remember there was a break in my way of thinking about comics. A book I read in my youth, Juan Salvador Gaviota, influenced my life. I guess many others have done [the same], but [these in particular] left an important mark on me.


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Chrissie Zullo added some more art to her blog, including this Black Queen/White Queen:
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Christos Gage chats with CBR about Avengers academy and Angel & Faith:


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Peter Nguyen posted this pic of Aquaman on his Tumblr:
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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp draws Travolta, Nick Spencer talks about his guidance councillor, Jeff Lemire rejoices over a lost dog, Charles Soule discusses process, JH Williams III flogs a bit of art, Jason Aaron shows off his mightily impressive beard, Peter David pens a bill of rights, Jim Rugg does OC Weekly, Dave Johnson draws a rabbit, Frank Miller opens his mouth, Brandon Graham confirms the rumours and Skottie Young draws Wormwood.



- Let’s begin with our weekly fix of
Hipp:
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Nick Spencer talks to CBR about Morning Glories. Here’s a taster:
Let's talk Ms. Hodge. We've been "place setting" a lot of characters in these opening arcs for the book from the teachers to Abraham to the kids and their families. Is Ms. Hodge one of the last major piece of the cast puzzle, or are there a few players out there to come?
No, there's still a lot of characters to be introduced that I consider to be...if not core cast then certainly major members of the supporting cast. There are a lot of new faces to be introduced, and we'll start to see some of them in the third arc and then some more in the fourth. She is a very important player, and she's somebody who's going to have a major impact on the story. I think that's pretty clear from this issue. But she's not the last one.

Aside from her growing specific role in the lives of the kids, did you just need a nice member of the faculty for balance?
I don't know. What was really interesting to me about the response has been how many people seemed to take to her immediately. It's always tricky when you're introducing a new character, and we've obviously just been through five "spotlight" issues that covered the background and lives of our main cast members. So I was a little nervous in going from that to introducing somebody new and giving her the spotlight. In my first conception of this issue, she didn't play that big of a role. She would make her first appearance, but my original intention was to focus more on the Glories themselves again. But as I got into writing it, she made a big impression on me. So I decided to stick with her and make the entire issue about her.
I think that the response to her is very strong and overwhelmingly positive, and I think that speaks to the fact that we've established a lot of empathy for the main cast. We're just feeling from the Glories really that there might be someone on this campus that isn't a homicidal maniac. That was kind of nice. Everyone let out a sigh of relief that there might be one person there who might have a little more to them. So she's an interesting piece to throw into the mix because she's clearly very different from Ms. Daramount or Mr. Gribbs or Nurse Nine. She clearly has a very different outlook and approach. And whether or not that means she has the best of intentions is a separate issue. But at the very least, she's not wickedly smiling at the idea of torturing one of our kids. So if nothing else, she's an interesting voice in the mix.


- Jeff Lemire’s very first graphic novel, ‘Lost Dogs’ is back in print. Here’s the cover:
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Charles Soule talks about the process of making comics and the 27 covers. Here’s a sample:
The process of getting a comic together can take some strange turns.  From time to time, I’ll have an idea for an element of a book, whether it’s a line of dialogue or a plot twist or just about anything else.  I’ll be thrilled about this idea, because it will seem like the best ever.  Then, eventually I see the finished version, and I’m like hooooooly crow… mistake.  If I’m lucky, it’s not too costly, and won’t require massive rewrites or new art.  It’s just part of the process, though.  As I’ve said a bunch of times, you don’t always have all your good ideas at once, and being able to recognize and discard bad ideas is incredibly important.

With 27 Second Set, we decided to continue the series’ tradition of using homages to famous images of musicians as the covers for each issue.  First Set used members of the 27 Club.  Second Set is using one-hit wonders.  As I write this, Issues 1 and 2 are on shelves, as well as available digitally, for those who prefer reading on smartphones, tablets and laptops (Issue 3 is out next week, November 23).  The cover for Issue 1 is an homage to Vanilla Ice.  The cover for Issue 2 references The Buggles.  It’s one of my favorite covers of the whole series – Scott Forbes really nailed it. 

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JH Williams III is selling some art this saturday. here’s a sample:
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Jason Aaron sat down with CBR to discuss Scalped and other things:


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Peter David authored a Fan/Pro bill of rights for convention behaviour. Its pretty ace. Here’s a sample:

I think it would be an interesting idea to produce a list of simple, basic rights that everyone attending conventions–both pros and fans–should expect. I mean, you’d think that they would be common sense; things that people would just know. On the other hand, the 10 Commandments were pretty common sense too, when you think about it, so I figure if it’s good enough for God…

Obviously there’s the one that tops them all, which naturally I call the Prime Directive:

Fans and Pros have the right to be treated by each other with the same courtesy that they themselves would expect to be treated. Fans and Pros who act like jerks abrogate the right to complain when they themselves are treated like jerks.
But there’s others, such as:
Guest Pros being sponsored by the convention have a right to written confirmation of all terms of their convention attendance at least ninety days before the convention, with travel arrangements finalized no later than thirty days prior. Travel in such instances should never be the expense of the Pro with subsequent expectation of reimbursement unless the Pro agrees to this…in which case, the Pro better be damned sure the organizer is good for it, because otherwise he’s on his own.

Fans and Pros have a right to walk through convention space without being impeded by other attendees who are either taking photographs or posing for photographs. Particularly applicable when large numbers of costumed individuals are posing for a large group of photographers. It’s a convention, not the red carpet at the Oscars. Should such blockages occur, fans and pros desiring to get from Point A to Point B should have the right of way and walk directly through the picture-taking area without the slightest concern about ruining other people’s pictures. If they weren’t courteous enough to worry about you getting to your panel, you shouldn’t have to worry about them getting their photograph of five slave Leias and a Wookie.

- Jim Rugg does some pen drawings for OC Weekly:
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Dave Johnson does Usagi Yjimbo:
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Frank Miller caused a stir this week on his thoughts about the Occupy Wall Street movement. Here’s his post in its entirety, but check out the blog, because the comments are worth a read:
Everybody’s been too damn polite about this nonsense:
 
The “Occupy” movement, whether displaying itself on Wall Street or in the streets of Oakland (which has, with unspeakable cowardice, embraced it) is anything but an exercise of our blessed First Amendment. “Occupy” is nothing but a pack of louts, thieves, and rapists, an unruly mob, fed by Woodstock-era nostalgia and putrid false righteousness. These clowns can do nothing but harm America.
 
“Occupy” is nothing short of a clumsy, poorly-expressed attempt at anarchy, to the extent that the “movement” – HAH! Some “movement”, except if the word “bowel” is attached - is anything more than an ugly fashion statement by a bunch of iPhone, iPad wielding spoiled brats who should stop getting in the way of working people and find jobs for themselves.
 
This is no popular uprising. This is garbage. And goodness knows they’re spewing their garbage – both politically and physically – every which way they can find.
 
Wake up, pond scum. America is at war against a ruthless enemy.
 
Maybe, between bouts of self-pity and all the other tasty tidbits of narcissism you’ve been served up in your sheltered, comfy little worlds, you’ve heard terms like al-Qaeda and Islamicism.
 
And this enemy of mine — not of yours, apparently - must be getting a dark chuckle, if not an outright horselaugh - out of your vain, childish, self-destructive spectacle.
 
In the name of decency, go home to your parents, you losers. Go back to your mommas’ basements and play with your Lords Of Warcraft.
 
Or better yet, enlist for the real thing. Maybe our military could whip some of you into shape.
 
They might not let you babies keep your iPhones, though. Try to soldier on.
 
Schmucks.
 
FM

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Brandon Graham announced that the teaser we saw last week was indeed for the King City trade. Here’s the cover:
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Skottie Young has been keeping up his daily sketches, including this one of Wormwood:
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Creator Roundup

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This week is an art heavy roundup as Dan Hipp channels an immortal trickster, Ben Templesmith hacks and slashes, Kieron Gillen discusses mutant rights, Jonathan Luna does a non comic related painting, Chrissie Zullo draws a beautiful girl, Grant Morrison is a wizard, Bryan lee O’Malley refuses to move on, Eric Canete plays around with a bazooka, D&A raise the dead, Skottie young goes depression era thug and Brandon Graham analyses his current state of mind.


- Dan Hipp channels his inner Loki:
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Ben Templesmith posted a whole host of amazing artworks he’s been doing. Check ‘em all out! Here’s one of Cassie Hack:
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Kieron Gillen caught up with Comics Alliance to chat about Uncanny X-Men 1. Here’s an excerpt:
ComicsAlliance: How did you choose your roster for the new Uncanny X-Men out of the huge cast of potential characters?

Kieron Gillen: I knew the X-Men: Schism [event] was coming, so my run up till now has actually been setting up the pieces, and the more philosophical elements. My first issue before the reboot focused on Magneto, and there's that Machiavelli meditation: "Is it better to be loved than feared?" I think if you look back whenever my [X-Men] run ends, you'll see that's my theme. I was very interested in the concept of fear. The first issue ends with a letter of Scott's -- a "Letter to Humanity" that's part of the back matter. We'll continue to protect the world that hates and fears us, but we'll never be victims again.

For me one of the major parts of Schism was Wolverine very much playing the idealist. Since Wolverine kind of walks out, they have to shoulder that burden to protect a world that hates and fears them. That includes [Wolverine's] school. It's actually a very paternalist attitude, "Go open your school. We'll go on protecting everyone. It's ok. Don't worry your furry little head about it." Although I kind of agree with Scotty; he sees that they haven't got time to be idealistic, because there are so few of them left.

CA: Because this is war?

KG: Or, it's survival. There hasn't been a major threat to the X-Men's existence [in a while] except for the Fear Itself stuff, and it's actually been the X-Men in a position of power, which I think you only realize in retrospect. I was very interested in the idea of the X-Men actually being the government [in Utopia], and seeing how they deal with their refugee situation from Breakworld. It's a very optimistic arc, actually. The easy, cynical story to do would be turning the X-Men into everything they hated. There's so much in the book that is Sisyphean. We'll never get into a position where mutants are loved in the Marvel Universe. It's a book about societal change whose whole core concept includes an element that means we can never actually win. There's a kind of element of defeatism to that, and that's my nagging problem with writing the X-Men. But you write around that, and you can show meaningful change in some way.


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Jonathan Luna posted this painting depicting a scene from ‘Stripes’:
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Chrissie Zullo posted some more comissions, including this Red Sonja:
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Grant Morrison sat down with CNN Geekout to discuss Action Comics and All Star Superman:
CNN Geek Out: Did DC come to you write "Action Comics" or did you pitch them the idea?
Grant Morrison: No, actually Dan DiDio (Co-Publisher of DC Comics) came over earlier in the year and told me what the plans were for this whole "New 52" initiative and he wanted me to do Superman.
I had no intention of it really, because I was kind of wrapping up all of the "Batman" stuff and I kind of said what I wanted to say about Superman (Grant wrote for All-Star Superman from 2005 to 2008) and the old Superman book, but I kind of had a little bit left over.
After I‘d done that story, it was kind of the end of Superman’s life, and I was interested in going back to the roots of the character, and his social and political roots, and maybe doing a take that dealt with him as a young man, but I didn’t really have any plans for that until Dan came over and then when he gave me the opportunity, and he said that they were willing to even change the continuity, and to let some new ideas and energy into it, it seemed perfect for that.
So the two things came together.

CNN Geek Out:
So, you mentioned "Batman and Robin." Has it been hard to write for Superman after writing for "Batman and Robin" and getting so deep into that mythos?
Morrison: Well, not really because I’m pretty fond of Superman and I’d done all the research for it when I was doing all the research for the old stuff, so it was kind of easy to get back into that mindset.
But again as you say, it’s very different from Batman, as that character was based on mysteries and intricate puzzles, and all that sort of stuff. Whereas "Action Comics'" title demanded that you take it in a much more physical and visceral way, so it was two different ways of thinking which also made it a little bit more fun.


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Bryan Lee O’Malley did what he does best and drew Ramona Flowers:
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Eric Canete also posted artwork, including this excellent Tank Girl:
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Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning chat with USA today about Resurrection Man. Here’s a morsel:
Like in soap operas, characters who die in comic books usually end up alive again somehow. But Mitch is a bit different in that every time he gets killed, he's resurrected with new and unusual powers, be it as a being of water, a guy with X-ray vision or — way back in the day when he was shot by Hitman in the first series — a dude with the ability to create butterflies.

Until their original editor, Eddie Berganza, asked them to bring back Resurrection Man for the new DC Universe, Lanning and Abnett hadn't been thinking about doing another series because they were able to give the original run a satisfying ending before it was canceled.

"That said, we did have and still got a little file of scrawlings and scratchings and — would you believe it — fax messages from people. That's how we used to do stuff back then," Lanning says, laughing. "If we take them out to the sunlight now, they just crumble to dust."

Even though they had "almost done too good a job telling the story the first time," Abnett says, tying up every loose end, they decided instead to give Mitch Shelley a new lease on life by retelling his story, making him a much more proactive character and pulling a bit more from the supernatural this time around.


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Skottie Young sketches up this awesome rendition of the Goon:
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Brandon Graham posted a bunch of preview pages for his upcoming story in Dark Horse Presents 7, as well as this little cartoon he drew at Midnight:
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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp does zombie Zelda, Greg Rucka talks Shakespeare, Bryan Lee O’Malley goes freaky friday, Peter David condemns anonymity, The Luna Bros do girl on guy, Brian Azzarello creates a new dialect, Charles Soule gives away a story, Brian Wood goes SNIKT, Fabio Moon presents a cover, Peter Milligan asks the hard questions, Skottie Young didn’t actually post anything this week and Robert Crumb gives an interview that will bring joy to your inner nerd.



- Dan Hipp wishes you a happy Hallowe’en:
ZOMBIELINK

- Greg Rucka comments on John Orloff’s film Anonymous, about the authorship of Shakespeare’s plays. It’s got nothing to do with comics, but Shakespeare is awesome. Here’s a taster:
Caught this piece on NPR this morning, Renee Montagne interviewing John Orloff regarding the movie Anonymous. And aside from the very many reasons to stick a thumb in the eye of the Shakespeare Didn’t Write Shakespeare debate, one thing was savagely clear to me. It’s apparent at the end of the piece, if you read or listen to it – Orloff doesn’t stick to his guns. He’s claiming de Vere wrote the plays, but at the end of the interview, he claims authorship isn’t the issue – it is, he says, “What we’re really doing is having a question about art and politics and the process of creativity. And that’s what the movie is about. It’s not about who wrote these plays; it’s about how does art survive and exist in our society.”

There are two things that really stick in my craw about this whole thing. The first is the basic premise that Shakespeare didn’t write the plays; an argument – in this context – that is entirely contingent on the conceit that only a nobleman could have developed the literary chops to create such enduring works of art. I find this, at its root, a classist argument, a reductive argument, and an inherently snobbish one, to boot (and was hardly surprised to discover that Antonin Scalia is another supporter of the argument – he practically makes my point right there; that Mark Twain would believe the same I find much harder to swallow, but, as 
Randy Newman once sang, “Pluto’s not a planet anymore, either.”) I find it petty. This is the same kind of argument that extends today, in variation, to declare that genre fiction isn’t “real” literature, or that, God forbid, someone who never attended college cannot possibly write a work of merit.

Wonder what Orloff would think about someone coming along fifty years after his death and claiming he couldn’t have possibly written any of his works, because he didn’t have the right parents, or go to the right school, or because he never even visited the 
forest of Tyto. (If that’s too oblique, I’ll explain – Orloff wrote the screen adaptation for the second Legends of the Guardians motion picture.)

- Bryan Lee O’Malley goes Freaky Friday for hallowe’en, swapping Ramona and Kim’s attire:
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- Peter David goes on a rather interesting tirade about anonymity on the interwebs. It’s a good little read:

For the startling number of people here who post under their own names. Who make the same choice that I routinely make wherever I put my thoughts out there, be it here, other websites, or in print: to attach my name to my opinions. To not hide behind the comfort of anonymity. Even though this course of action has subjected me to: people trying to get me fired from Marvel; people trying to get me fired from DC; attempts at boycotts; my name showing up on blacklists; people challenging me to debates; people writing and publishing diatribes based upon things I never said; people shouting at me at conventions; people showing up at store signings and hurling a steady stream of abuse; and much more.
Screw ‘em.

For me, living in a free society isn’t always a comfortable thing, and that’s the part we should appreciate–and often don’t. Just ask all the would-be censors who want certain books, certain comic books, certain TV shows, certain movies, to just go away or, even better, be driven away through means ranging from organized boycotts to legal prosecution. They’re all in favor of free speech, as long as it’s within their comfort zone. Why would anyone want to share any traits, on any level, with people like that? Lack of comfort is what you should be willing to deal with. That’s the price of a free society.

I’m always reminded that in 1776, a bunch of rich white guys signed their names to a piece of paper telling the king to sod off, knowing that it could cost them their property, their freedom, their lives, their sacred honor. And here we are, 250 years later, and we’re afraid to sign our names to our opinions because we don’t wanna get spammed or trolled?

I totally understand the attraction of anonymity. I can’t say, though, as I think it’s helped rational discourse in this country. I always flash back to that Disney cartoon with Goofy as a driver. He’s perfectly calm and rational and polite until he gets behind the wheel and he becomes an anonymous guy in a car…and then goes totally mental. I think the information superhighway is loaded with guys who wind up turning into outraged Goofys. I see discussion boards where people almost uniformly post under fake names, but it doesn’t come across like discussion. You know what it reads like? Road rage.

So fine. I choose to drive with the top down so people know who’s behind the wheel.

Others are, of course, welcome to do as they wish. Free society, after all.

- The Luna Brothers chat with Girl on Guy about life and comics:


- Brian Azzarello sat down with USA Today to talk about his new series ‘Spaceman’:
If someone were to review the new Vertigo Comics series Spaceman in the future when the book is set, it might go something like this: "Oh em gee. Vertigo duz it agin. Awsum."

A new language not too far from our own is just one of many themes explored in the sci-fi title reteaming the creators of the acclaimed Vertigo series 100 Bullets. Out today, Spaceman won't last 100 issues and 10 years, though — instead, writer Brian Azzarello and artist Eduardo Risso are using a TV-like model with a nine-issue monthly miniseries before moving on to a second chapter. Or maybe a whole new idea.

"I wasn't sure if we were going to work together anymore," Azzarello says, adding that he and Risso started to hash out Spaceman around the time when 100 Bullets finished two years ago.

"I had the feeling where we'd probably just shake hands and say, 'Have a nice life,'" he adds. "It didn't happen that way. We were out and he said to me, 'What are we going to do next?' I was like, 'Whoa. You want to continue working together?' And he looked at me and went, 'It's not broke.'"

There weren't many sympathetic characters in their previous crime saga, unlike the big, hulking guy at the center of Spaceman.


- Charles Soule put together a free short comic on his website. Enjoy page 1 below and read the rest of the story here.
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- Brian Wood spoke with CBR about Wolverine: Alpha & Omega:
Quentin Quire, the purple-haired telepath who once led a student revolt at the Xavier School, returned to shake up mutant alliances in the recent "X-Men: Schism" miniseries. Even as he unwillingly begins a new life under Logan's tutelage in this month's "Wolverine and the X-Men" #1, it appears Quire has plans to further assert his intellect and power.

Launching in January, "Wolverine and the
X-Men: Alpha and Omega" sees the youth in revolt launch a full-scale attack on the new faction's leader. The five-issue miniseries is written by "DMZ," "Northlanders," and incoming "Conan the Barbarian" scribe Brian Wood with art by Mark Brooks and Roland Boschi. Comic Book Resources caught up with Wood for a quick chat about the series.

"Wolverine and the X-Men: Alpha and Omega" debuts not long after the big shakeup in "Schism," which saw Logan reject Cyclops' vision for the future of mutantkind and return to Westchester to establish the
Jean Grey School for Gifted Youngsters. Quentin Quire, also known as Kid Omega, traveled with Wolverine as a captive -- as of this writing, "Wolverine and the X-Men" #1 has just been released and it's unclear what Wolverine's plans for the notoriously rebellious student might be. Already, though, the January-debuting series will see Wolverine contend with Quentin Quire for control of the school.

"Logan and Quentin square off for sure, but its not the type of conflict you might be guessing at," Wood told CBR News. "This is pretty much a one-on-one type of battle, with Armor caught in the middle -- and it's a battle that's being waged entirely on Quentin's terms.  I wouldn't say he's interested in Logan's job so much as he's interested in just beating Logan at something.  It's irrational and represents only short term thinking on Quentin's part, but that doesn't make it any less dangerous.  It might actually make it more dangerous."

- Fabio Moon asks us to keep an eye out for his story in Dark Horse Presents #6. He also did the cover:
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- Peter Milligan speaks with io9, and answers the really tough questions :

Another alien question — who would win in a fight, Doop from X-Statix or Atrocitus?

I don't want to get Marveled up (because this is a DC interview) but it depends on what weapons they use. If the weapons are surreal, then Doop's going to win hands down. In a fair fight, Atrocitus.

Have you sketched out a potential crossover between Red Lanterns and Justice League Dark?
I haven't thought of that, but they do both operate in the DC Universe, but Justice League Dark are these occult magic users, and you might need a little more brute force to handle the Red Lanterns.

I was just wondering because the planet Ysmault definitely has a mystical reputation. That could have room for some crossover insanity.
It's a planet that's large enough to give you anything you want. Also, Madam Xanadu has the power of clairvoyance, which is the same as what Atrocitus can do with his blood magic. There's an interesting convergence of powers. But what's interesting about Justice League Dark is that they exist to deal with threats that the Justice League might not want anything to do with. With characters like Superman and Batman, black magic could pull the rug from out their feet, potentially. The JLD has its uses, as long as it stays together!
I also get asked a lot about writing John Constantine in both Justice League Dark and [Vertigo Comics'] Hellblazer. I quite like that some of the readers are enjoying him in Dark and then checking him out over at Vertigo. I get asked if it's difficult, will readers get confused. I think that's doing the average comic book reader a great disservice — the continuities aren't completely connected, but I think people are sophisticated enough to figure out that this character is used in two different stories.

Is there any way we can get more people to read Enigma? That's really one of my favorite things you've ever penned.
I was re-reading Enigma. This is the really early, early stages but I'm considering doing a sequel. So much has happened in the world since it came out, in terms of how gays are treated in the West. I'd like to highlight those differences of lives of homosexuals in the West compared to gays in Africa, the Middle East, and lots of developing countries.

- Here’s a Skottie Young original. OK, it’s from last week, but check out how awesome it is!
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- The Comics Journal Published the best interview you will read this month. One of the all time great comics publishers, Gary Groth, interviews one of the all time great comic creators, Robert Crumb. Here is just a tiny morsel of this massive interview:

You lived on a collective farm?

Well, when Ballantine Books wanted to do the Fritz the Cat book they gave me $10,000 up front. That was big money for us then. That was in ’69. And then Dana, my first wife, immediately wanted to go out and find a place to buy. And she heard about this place three hours from San Francisco in Potter Valley and went up there and looked at it, it was $18,000 for a five-acre place with a house on it, so she said, “That’s the one. I’m going to buy that.” We bought it, and then she had this idea, she had all these people, hangers-on and all that. She wanted to do this big garden thing and that was like early 1970, late ’69. Might’ve been in 1970 that I got roped into pitching in and helping out with this gardening thing.
It ended up a big disaster, ended up being all we could really manage was a small patch, a garden patch about maybe 30 by 20 feet. We couldn’t farm acres; we just didn’t have the knowledge. Nobody really wanted to work that hard in the hot sun. You know these hippies, they all assumed that somebody else would do that, that somebody else would slave in the hot sun, not them. They had more important things to do. [Laughs.] It’s a lot of work, a lot of work, and you had to do it all by hand, without machinery and stuff. Oy!
Who were these hangers on and where did they live?
Well, we had a big place there. I don’t know where they all came from. Some of them lived in shacks nearby. That was a really crazy time. It was all very unstable. People came and went; it was anarchy. I couldn’t handle it. I was no master at dealing with that stuff. And my comics were supporting the whole thing. When everybody was hanging around and taking up my time during the day I had to work at night. It was the only time that people weren’t hanging around. [Laughs.] I have the memory of this in my mind, sitting in my little cabin in Potter Valley with all these people just sitting around, wanting to be entertained, wanting to smoke dope. Just taking up your time. Trying to get some work done was impossible.
You described that situation to me once, working through the night after these hangers-on went to sleep, and I wondered when you got any sleep.

Well, I would work all night ’til like 5 in the morning, then sleep ’til like 1 in the afternoon. [Laughs.] That’s what I did.
You were unbelievably productive during that period.

Yeah, I’m not sure about the quality of all that stuff I did though. I kind of think the quality was declining in the early ’70s. My life was just too crazy and people wanting my attention all the time because I was Mr. Hippy cartoonist, and people wanting things constantly, I was involved in so much nonsense. [Laughter.] Plus, I was running around chasing girls, and wanting to fuck this one and that one. [Laughs.]
Given all that, it’s still utterly amazing how productive you were.
Yeah, but the work suffered. I think it suffered mostly from pot, smoking too much pot wasn’t good for me. LSD was very inspirational, but pot just kind of de-motivated me. The drawing got sloppy and careless.

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Creator Roundup - 27/10

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This week Dan Hipp goes back to ’78, Michael Alan Nelson discusses being an outcast, Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Grey get there cowboy boots on, Brandon Graham opens his sketchbook, Mike Mignola talks ghost films, Chrissie Zullo dumps, Mike Carey works with his family, Skottie Young draws Ratfish, Brian Wood lets us know what he’s doing, David Aja gives us a sneak peek, Jeff Lemire is happy and Stan Lee does Shakespeare.



- Dan Hipp pays homage to the 1978 cartoon ‘Battle of the Planets’:
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Michael Alan Nelson has a chat with Wayne Hall about Malignant Man and his new series Outcast. Click HERE to listen.

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Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Grey were interviewed by USA Today about All-Star Western. Here’s a tidbit:
"It was great how many people stepped outside their comfort zone to pick up the book based on what was going on with the whole DC Universe. It seems a lot of them were very pleasantly surprised and were interested in going back and finding the Hex issues, which is always nice," says Gray, who co-wrote 70 issues of the recent Jonah Hex series as well as a graphic novel with Palmiotti.

"Some people just say automatically, 'Well, I don't like Westerns. I don't like history,'" Palmiotti adds. "And we have a lot of those same people coming up to us and saying, 'I would have never read a Jonah Hex book but I gave this one a shot.' We knew we had one chance to get the readers involved, and it looks like it turned out pretty well."

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Brandon Graham has a great new post on his blog with some killer illustrations, including this sketchbook page:
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Mike Mignola talks to Adult Swim about ghost movies. Here’s a taster:
Are there many ghost stories told from the perspective of the ghost? How do you feel about those?
Sure. It's not an uncommon thing. There's a wonderful story by an author I can't remember, probably not 1800's but in the '40s or '50s. Tours would come in to visit this haunted house, and the story is told from the point of view of the ghost, and he's complaining about the things that they have to do because these people are coming. That may be a whole genre within ghost stories, the "poor, put-upon ghost." But again, there's such a great variety in these ghost stories that almost nobody's using for anything.
Is there a particular strain of ghost stories that you feel you're an apologist for?
No, because nobody knows about them so I've never had to defend them. They don't come up in conversation. Same with film. Most people, when you get around to talking about good ghost movies, almost everybody I talk to of my generation, we have the same very short list. There's a couple more than the ones that I mentioned, but it's a pretty small handful. And again, mostly not any of the contemporary stuff.

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Chrissie Zulo has some great new art to show off, including this sketch dump of NYCC commissions:
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Mike Carey has just written a novel with his wife Lin and daughter Louise. it’s called The Steel Seraglio and it’s coming in March of next year. Here’s what it’s about:

The sultan Bokhari Al-Bokhari of Bessa has 365 concubines — until a violent coup puts the city in the hands of the religious zealot Hakkim Mehdad. Hakkim has no use for the pleasures of the flesh: he condemns the women first to exile and then to death.
Cast into the desert, the concubines must rely on themselves and each other to escape from the new sultan’s fanatical pursuit. But their goals go beyond mere survival: with the aid of the champions who emerge from among them, they intend to topple the usurper and retake Bessa from the repressive power that now controls it.
The assassin, Zuleika, whose hands are weapons.
The seer, Rem, whose tears are ink.
The wise Gursoon, who was the dead sultan’s canniest advisor.
The camel-thief, Anwar Das, who offers his lying tongue to the concubines’ cause.
Together, they must forge the women of the harem into an army, a seraglio of steel, and use it to conquer a city. But even if they succeed, their troubles will just be beginning — because their most dangerous enemy is within their own number…

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Skottie Young posted a bunch of stuff on his deviantART page including this awesome Ratfish pinup:
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Brian Wood, who’s tumblr blog is fantastic, shared a whole host of things - preview images for his upcoming ‘Massive’, Q&A, cool little posts and this update about his upcoming work:
January - The Massive, w/ Kristian Donaldson, 3-part prequel in DHP.
January - Wolverine & The X-Men mini-series w/ Mark Brooks, Roland Boschi
February - Conan ongoing, w/ Becky Cloonan 
(sometime around here) - Channel Zero omnibus (if a 300pp book counts as that)
June - The Massive ongoing starts
Ending work:
December - DMZ ends
February - Supernatural mini-series ends
March - Northlanders ends
There are two additional projects I am in the process of getting approved.  These are both creator-owned, smaller projects.  Once those are knows, that’s pretty much me set for awhile.  Gonna be a busy 2012.  To think, earlier in the year I was in a state of perpetual panic-attack, wondering if I even had a career in comics anymore.


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David Aja gives us a sneak peak at Secret Avengers #18, namely the Master of Kung Fu doing his thing:
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Jeff Lemire’s pretty stoked about having Animal Man go to a third printing. Here’s what he has to say about it:
I can’t express how happy I am with the success of Animal Man, its a book I care deeply about. Travel Foreman, Lovern Kindzierski and I are pouring our hearts into each issue and it’s a real thrill to see so many people responding. Scott Snyder and I just got back from New York where we had a series of meetings with editor Joey Cavalieri, Group Editor Matt Idelson as well as Bob Harras and Eddie Berganza. We laid out our ambitious plans for both Animal Man and Swamp Thing, and I think I can safely say that no one will be able to guess what’s coming next. We have a huge story planned that’s filled with adventure, horror and drama. The Baker family is in for quite a ride, and I hope all the fans and readers will stick around to see what we have planned!

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Stan Lee narrates the trailer to his forthcoming Graphic Novel Romeo and Juliet: The War:
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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp is on the same bat (adventure) time, Joe Hill passes the blame, Eric Canete channels the power cosmic, Phil Hestor goes bionic, Brian Wood previews barbarity, Georges Jeanty answers a bunch of questions, Bryan Lee O’Malley tells a tale about a fly, Jeff Lemire is not as vain as Grant Morrison, Fabio Moon gives a nod to Chris Claremont and Brandon Graham decides to collaborate. As always, if you want me to follow a specific creator, let me know in the comments.



- As always, let us begin with a bit of Dan Hipp:
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Joe Hill shares his involvement in The Cape series from IDW:
Big credit to the creative team on the book – artist Zach Howard, colorist Nelson Daniel, and scripter Jason Ciaramella. My name is on the cover, because the comic spun out of my short story from 20th CENTURY GHOSTS. Also I’m a creative consultant on the thing, a job which largely consists of looking at Jason’s scripts and saying, “this fuckin’ rules,” then looking at Zach’s art and saying, “This fuckin’ kills.” But Zach, Nelson, and Jason are the dudes who have really brought this thing to life, with a healthy mix of ink, imagination, and blood. Thanks to them for treating my characters so well – or not, as the case may be – and big thanks to everyone who checks it out.

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Eric Canete has a bunch of commissions he did up on his blog including this one of Galactus:
galactus03_GREY_UL

- Phil Hester and Jon Lau
talk about their Bionic Man series from Dynamite Entertainment:
TFAW.com: This is the second time both of you have collaborated on a Kevin Smith screenplay–the first time being with Green Hornet, of course. What were the major differences this time, with The Bionic Man?

Phil Hester: The source material is a bit older. Kevin wrote his Bionic Man screenplay quite a long time ago, so there were a lot of technical updates we needed to do, especially regarding computer and cell phone advances. As far as the actual working process goes, very little difference. I adapt the screenplay, Kevin edits my pass, I incorporate his notes, Kevin does a final polish, and then poor Jonathan has to draw it all.

Jonathan Lau: Yes, very much so–at least poor Jonathan is glad to be on this team. Phil knows what I enjoy working on and allowed me to have at it. The only thing missing is the live-action movie that coincides with the comic book, as with Green Hornet.

TFAW.com: I’m a huge fan of the original Six Million Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman–were you familiar with the shows before you started on the project?

PH: Sure. I was a kid when both shows originally aired. I spent many a recess running in slow motion and lifting imaginary cars off of imaginary trapped grandmas while humming “nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh!”

JL: I have vague memories of the show, so I couldn’t say I am a die-hard fan. But Lee Majors will always be the Six Million Dollar Man for me. And very similar to Phil, I did those things too. It’s just that when leaping off high cabinets, gravity isn’t in slow motion for me, so I go “nuh-nuh-nuh-n-OWWW!”

-
Brian Wood threw up this promo for his new Conan series with Becky Cloonan:
conanbarb2012


- Georges Jeanty indulged fans in a great Q & A on the Slayalive forums. Here is but a taste:
Q: The new character Severin seems to burn out a vampire's demon leaving a human corpse. Did you have any special instructions on how this should look when he uses his power or were you given total creative freedom in how it would appear?

Georges: Not really. that was something that developed over time. I knew I wanted to have something distinctive for Severin's power. There was talk of it being electricity, which was fine, but I also wanted to draw stuff that I don't often do. Jack Kirby became famous for an effect that was later named after him: Kirby Krackle. It's all those little black spots grouped together in some creative design. That became more of a style thing for Sevrin's power. Usually the visuals are left up to the artist. It's one of those things where if you get good people, then leave them to do their work.

Q: How has it been drawing the more real world C.S.I. scenes we've seen so far and the interrogation of Buffy scene in the new issue.

Georges: That's more true than you think. We are in an age in the Buffyverse where 'reality' is starting to creep in. Seriously. If you'll notice in Seasons 1 through 7, we pretty much had Buffy in Sunnydale and that was for all intents and purposes her world. It became kind of a surreal world where you accepted all the weird goings on (actually you wondered how in the world could anyone live in Sunnydale?!). Yes, there was that time at the beginning of Season 3 where she left, but starting with Season 8 Buffy and the crew were jet-setting all over the globe, bringing her into the 'real world', when you think of it. Granted Angel Season 5 had glimpses of Buffy in the real world, but you never 'saw' her. Now that she's out in the world and the general population knows about Slayers, things feel a little more real. The interrogation room scene just drives home how reality was creeping in. Look out for a lot more 'reality' in the future.

Bryan Lee O’Malley shared this cool little cartoon:
2011_10_14

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Jeff Lemire discusses a bunch of stuff with IO9 including Animal Man:
So, what's your master plan for Animal Man?
If you read the whole Vertigo Animal Man series of 89 issues or whatever, each writer has a completely different take on his origin. If you try to put them all together, they contradict one another. I had to pick and choose to make up a new origin that makes sense to new readers.
It's about taking stuff like the family aspect of Grant Morrison's run and concepts like The Red and boiling them down into one new package that's really accessible to readers who didn't know anything about him. That was my challenge as the writer.

In the first issue, you cast yourself as a magazine reporter interviewing Animal Man. Grant Morrison famously wrote himself into Animal Man. Will Jeff Lemire the DC character be appearing in future issues?
No, that was just my cheeky nod to the whole idea. The next few issues are really cool, with Buddy and [his daughter] Maxine going into The Red for the first time. They bring the reader with them to meet these characters called The Totems, who are all the former avatars of The Red. They're new characters I created, they're like The Red's version of The Parliament of Trees. When they meet The Totems, they begin to understand what Maxine is, what The Red is, all these things readers have been wondering about.

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Fabio Moon posted some art in honour of Chris Claremont’s upcoming appearance at Rio Comicon. Here’s the first:
6255743284_34f8361711_o

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Brandon Graham posted a ton of stuff this week including updates on Multiple Warheads and a bunch of preview pages for his new Image book Prophet. It’s his first collaboration with an artist that’s not himself (It’s Simon Roy):
prophet_no1_p06_ltr_low_v2
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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp would like to know more, Jeff Smith, Jeff Lemire, Brian Wood and Jamie McKelvie tells us where they’ll be this weekend, Sara Pichelli draws Siryn for charity, Mike Mignola draws Jesus for his greyhound, Warren Ellis discusses all things digital, Jeremy Bastion draws just as good as Rafael Grampa, Dan Clowes had a rough childhood, Joe Hill talks endings and beginnings, Rafael Grampa draws as good as Jeremy Bastion, Michael Alan Nelson is outcast and Alan Moore is good old crazy Alan Moore.




- Here’s this week’s Dan Hipp:
STARSHIPTROOPERS

- A ton of creators (well 4, and 2 of them are called Jeff) shared their NYCC schedules, so I’ve taken the liberty to combine them into one awesome schedule of creative goodness:
Friday:

1:00pm-2:00pm – Jeff Lemire signing (DC Booth 1254)
1:30pm – Brian Wood @ Dark Horse Comics Panel
room 1A15

3:30pm - Brian Wood signing at Dark Horse table w/ Kristian Donaldson

4:00-6:00pm – Jeff Smith booth signing
5:00-6:00pm – Jamie McKelvie signing (Marvel Booth 654)
5:00pm - Brian Wood signing at DC Comics w/ (hopefully) Riccardo Burchielli 

Saturday:

11:00am - Brian Wood signing at DC Comics w/ (again, hopefully) Riccardo Burchielli

11:00am-1:00pm - Jeff Smith booth signing
12:00pm - Brian Wood signing Oni Press w/ Ryan Kelly

1:00pm-2:00pm – Jeff Lemire signing (DC Booth 1254)
3:45pm-4:45pm - Room 1A23:
Celebrating 20 Years of BONE with Jeff Smith! Speakers include: Cassandra Pelham, David Saylor, Dr. Katie Monnin, Jeff Smith and Tom Sniegoski
4:00-5:00pm – Jeff Lemire signing (Top Shelf)
4:30pm - Brian Wood signing at Dark Horse Comics w/ Becky Cloonan 

Sunday:
11:am-12:00pm - Jeff Lemire signing (DC Booth 1254)
11:00am-1:00pm – Booth signing with Jeff Smith, Tom Sniegoski and Steve Hamaker

3:00pm-5:00pm - Jeff Lemire signing (Top Shelf)
3:00pm-5:00pm- Jeff Smith booth signing

- Sara Pichelli posted her artwork for the 1st Annual Charity Art Auction at New York Comic Con to benefit the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
Siryn

- Warren Ellis writes an awesome article about webcomics and digital comics, what the difference is and where the mediums need to go. Here’s a tasty morsel:
Way back in the day, in fact, people talked about how what the medium needed was an iPod for comics.  I, and probably others, countered that what was in fact needed was an iTunes for comics.  The delivery system, not the device.  Comixology, Graphic.ly, iVerse and all the others are in the business of trying to provide the iTunes for comics.  But, of course, with the iPad, we got the iPod for comics, too, the perfect device for reading them. 
(I am, for the purposes of this thought, ignoring the Kindle, and also Android tablets.)

But no-one seemed to have cracked the Season Pass yet.  I’ve talked to a few digital-comics services about this: if your service doesn’t allow you to buy a subscription that has your favourite comics automagically download to your device or your in-service locker, then I think you’re missing a huge piece of potential.

It occurred to me today – and my mind’s mostly been elsewhere – that digital comics and webcomics are not the same thing at all, and are not the same thing in ways other than the obvious.

The focus is off webcomics right now.  People are looking at how to get into the digital comics services.  And quite rightly: they offer the possibility of bypassing the zero-sum game of serialising new and original material into the direct sales comics store market, a market that’s frequently been quite adamant about how it doesn’t want to sell new and original material.  If I had the ability to go into digital comics right now and attempt to access a paying audience for new work, I absolutely would.

-
Jeremy Bastion posted some new art, including this:
cpgwfriends

- Patch.com
interviewed Dan Clowes about his new book The Death Ray:
Q: You take great pains to separate yourself from the work. In The Death-Ray there are panels with these intensely personal details. Can you give me an example of that?

Daniel Clowes
: Well, I mean, the whole thing. The main character looks very much like I did, or at least has the same hairstyle and wardrobe that I did back in 1977. And I lived with my grandparents, and the kid’s grandfather looks quite a bit like my grandfather.


All of the kids in high school are sort of unintentionally based on kids I went to high school with. I was just sort of trying to draw kids that seemed real or seemed like they had some kind of resonance to me personally, and so I think, “Well, that kid should be similar to this kid that was in my science class in 11th grade.”
I was sort of approximating them the way I remembered them. I was thinking, “Oh, they don’t really look anything like the actual kids. They’re sort of vaguely similar.” But then, when I looked back at it, I really got them almost exactly. A few of the caricatures are uncannily perfect. They could actually sue me probably. [Laughs]


Q
: Do you have close enough relationships with anybody from high school where that even would be a problem?

Clowes
: I don’t. I have one friend from high school that I still talk to occasionally and that’s it.


Q
: You’ve talked about getting harassed as a kid and your daily ritual to protect yourself. Can you elaborate?

Clowes
: Yeah, my entire childhood was in Hyde Park. I used to get hassled or beaten up or had my bike stolen almost weekly on my way home from school. So I used to devise this really elaborate, complicated route to get home without having to cross paths with any other kids.
In school, I was very, very shy, and I didn’t want to interact with anybody and I wanted to just blend into the background. So over the years, I learned many strategies to become invisible to other kids — which I think served me well as a writer because I think kids would often forget I was there and talk freely in front of me, and I was paying close attention.

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Rafael Grampa posted this AWESOME artwork for his exhibition at Comicon 2011 RIO:
batman_modern_final

- CBR
catches up with Joe Hill to talk about his Scream Awards nomination, wrapping up Locke & key, The Cape and the Locke and Key pilot. Here’s what he has to say about finishing Locke and Key:
But that process of serialization comes with its pitfalls, as Hill said, "In terms of winding up, I had some tension when I was about six or seven issues in. When I was just starting 'Head Games,' I started to worry about whether or not I could stick the landing. I did a lot of thinking about how to wind it up. And now that I'm here in the home stretch, I've really enjoyed it. It seems like all the parts are there. Even though it'll probably be another six months before readers have gotten a chance to finish 'Clockworks' – which is our second-to-last arc – every issue of that series is written. And I feel like we've plugged all the holes and answered all the major questions that remain. This is not like 'The X-Files' where mysteries would get solved, but then that would just open up more mysteries underneath. After a while, it began to seem like this tremendous circle jerk. It was real frustrating because there was no resolution, and they had no resolution because they just did what was cool and they didn't worry about the explanations until after the fact. I think David and I have avoided that trap. I hope the readers will feel that way when we're done.
In the meantime, fans of Hill's writing can dig into IDW's "The Cape" – an ongoing twist on the superhero paradigm that started as a one-shot adaptation of a story from the writer's "20th Century Ghosts" collection. While that adaptation – written by Jason Ciaramella – was the first thing his publisher ever pitch to Hill, he was surprised when it finally came to fruition. "It's interesting because this is really the first thing of mine ever that's been adapted into another medium by someone else. The only time that's ever happened otherwise was with the TV pilot for 'Locke & Key.' And that was my story with some other very creative people running with it onto TV."

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Michael Alan Nelson talks about his new series Outcast and shows off all 6 #1 covers. Here’s my favourite:
I don’t think it’s possible for me to express to you just how epic this series is going to be.  Think about it.  An undead king with only a massive sword and a grudge in his possession, searching for his stolen soul across a land that no longer wants him?  I was BORN to write this series. 
OUTCAST_01_Jusko[3]

- Metro
interviews Alan Moore and always, he has some crazy things to say:
Which of your comic works are you proudest of?
At the moment I feel an awful lot of my comic career is behind me, particularly all of the superhero stuff – the stuff that’s owned by American corporations. I want to distance myself from that, so the stuff I’m proudest of is what I own: From Hell, Lost Girls, The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen. I don’t read my earlier work because there are too many unpleasant associations with it. I don’t have a copy of Watchmen in the house. I’m glad the work is out there in the world, having an effect, but it’s like I’ve gone through a messy divorce.

Have your bad experiences with publishers put you off the comics you enjoyed when you were younger?

To a degree. I’d kept comics I had a fondness for but they’ve all gone now. I still respect the writers, artists and their work but I’ve had an unusual career. I was at least partly responsible for changing people’s attitude to comics in the 1980s. There are other things I’m relatively good at apart from comics that I’m concentrating on. It’s a shame but I’m a thousand miles away from mainstream comics now.

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Mike Mignola is running an auction to help his greyhound Sonny have treatment for lymphoma. Here’s the artwork his auctioning:
Witchfinderlostandgone2_40
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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp channels his inner Willy Wonka, Mike Carey plays video games, Terry Moore shares his trash, Dave Gibbons talks about...erm...Watchmen, Gabriel Ba draws some houses, Kate Beaton puts some cartoons together and calls it a book, Jamie McKelvie offers an Icelandic nymph, Georges Jeanty doesn’t watch Buffy, Jonathan Luna makes Steve rogers a girl, Joe Hill makes a list, Brian Wood makes a sign, Bryan Lee O’Malley makes a Mario level and Chrissie Zullo makes pretty pictures.



- Here’s this week’s
Dan Hipp:
VICTORVONDOOM

- God is a Geek
interviews Mike Carey about writing the X-Men Destiny video Game. Here’s a taste:
How did you get involved with writing for games, and what are your aspirations for this medium?
I wandered in from the comic book world, essentially. Most writers these days are doing this, I think: seeing themselves not as comic book writers or novelists or screenwriters but as writers, period. Almost nobody among the creative people I know is committed to staying in one medium. So for the games work I’ve done, my comics work – and to a much smaller extent, my prose writing – was my CV.
And, as with all my other writing, my aspirations are to tell a cool, engaging, absorbing story that plays with ideas I find interesting. In a way, for me, the medium really is NOT the message. Obviously, you adapt your storytelling style and approach to the medium you’re working in, but in terms of what I want to get out of a writing gig, that’s pretty universal.
Is X-Men Destiny going to be canon in the X-Men universe or does it happen totally separate from the events that are currently happening in the X books. If it is in the X-Men canon, without giving details, does it tie in to what’s going to be happening in the upcoming Schism storyline? How important is this to you?
X-Men Destiny is not canon. It’s an alternate timeline, essentially like the Age of Apocalypse, Days of Future Past, and (kind of) my own recent Age of X. X-Men lore allows for these parallel continuities, and is rich in them. In this case, what we’ve done is to keep some of the flavour and some of the broadest strokes of recent X-Men continuity – the destruction of the Xavier Academy, the move to the West Coast, the battle against a rising tide of anti-mutant intolerance – and put our own spin on them. And in much the same way, although we don’t acknowledge Schism, we kind of have our own version of that, too. Our X-Men have fragmented into different groups with different goals, and depending on what happens in the course of the story that may intensify or reverse.

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Terry Moore shares 3 unused pages from Echo. Here’s the first:
RR3.18unused

- The Huffington post
spoke with Dave Gibbons about a host of topics, including digital comics and the success of Watchmen:
HuffPost: When it comes to digital comics are we still waiting for someone to really use that medium in a new way?
Dave: Well I think we are sort of groping towards what is perhaps a new kind of medium. ... I think there is a new grammar that we're groping towards. I've been very involved with a company called Madefire who I think have got quite a revolutionary new approach to this. They've kind of come up with an authoring tool, and a way of distributing this material which I think is going to be really interesting, and I'm involved with them to the degree that my other commitments let me be, and I've always been a great proponent of that technology.
HuffPost: Are you comfortable with the fact that Watchmen is always going to be held up as part of the graphic novel canon? That when people try to convince their friends to read them they'll say ‘you should probably start with Watchmen.'
Dave: Well I mean that's what traditionally has happened, and I think because it has got such a reputation it is going to be on the basic comics or graphic novel reading list and of course, from my point of view, given that we get a royalty, well then, that can only be a good thing.
Of course, it's been a rather overshadowing thing in my career but, hey, I mean I can't really complain about having done something that's been amazingly successful. So yeah, I'm perfectly happy with the position that Watchmen has.
I think the fact that it stands alone is such an important thing that I hope DC can resist any temptation to expand it beyond that. I don't think that would be a good thing. I think the unique selling proposition of Watchmen is that it is complete and entire and self-contained and that's the only thing I fear, I say fear, the only thing I'm apprehensive about is perhaps that they might not be able to resist the lure of kind of burning the furniture, as it were.

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Gabriel Ba shares a poster for a Sao Paulo concert he drew:
6175729439_39d0190009_b

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Kate Beaton is featured over at NPR. Here’s an excerpt:
Beaton's new book, Hark! A Vagrant — based on her website, Hark! A Vagrant — is full of witty rewrites of history and classic literature. In her version of the discovery of the North Pole, Henson gets his revenge. The white explorer, Peary, demands that his black associate help him from his sled so he can stand on the North Pole and get all the glory — but Henson refuses. He gloats, "Man! It's pretty nice being on the North Pole! ... Gonna do some squats ... on the North Pole ... feels good."
Beaton's comics tackle both the obscure and well-known sides of history. One of her favorite subjects is the Kennedy dynasty.
"I love the Kennedys; they're amazing," she says. "The Kennedys are fascinating because I'm Canadian and this is a big American thing and they're such a big part of the culture around here. ... That really fascinates me; the drive that they all had to go and to succeed and to push."

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Jamie McKelvie continues to practise his likenesses, this week sharing a drawing of Bjork:
6198057954_bb0d0d26bd_o

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Georges Jeanty has an interview with Komix Online. Here’s part of it:
Was there a point when you felt like you’d ‘arrived‘? (Perhaps working on big DC characters such as Superman, Superboy and Green Lantern, or your first ongoing series Bishop: The Last X-Man?)
Aw, man. There were several times I thought I had arrived! I must have done 3 high profile books before I got to “the Big Two” I scored a job at Tekno Comics, and then at Defiant, and a couple of others I can’t even remember now. I always say that my career has been a series of false starts. Just when I thought I had arrived something happened and I was back to square one. It wasn’t until I moved to North Carolina to join the staff of London Night Studios (of Razor fame) that I thought I was at least a working artist… until they folded a year later).
Having worked on so many iconic characters like those mentioned above, are there any characters/titles out there you’d still like to work on?
How much time have you got? Pretty much every character out there I would consider a challenge to work on. I’m still a Marvel fan, I’d love to work on their characters, but DC has been very good to me over the years and it’s always a pleasure to do their books. Sorry, that’s a short answer to a long question.
Moving on to Buffy, I believe I read somewhere that you hadn’t seen the show when you were offered the job on Season Eight. Is that correct and, if so, what went through your mind when you did get to watch the series knowing you’d be working on the comic?
You are correct, sir. I was aware of Buffy from pop culture, but I wasn’t into the show. Not knowing the much of the character, what struck me most in the begging was how much this little blonde girl got hit. I was a little turned off in the beginning. I didn’t get the extent of her Slayer strength. As I continued to watch, I was taken at just how good the writing was and how many comic references there were. Ultimately I was hooked, as I’m sure most Buffy fans will attest.

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Jonathan Luna shared this painting of ‘Stephanie’ Rogers:
StephanieRogers-600

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Joe Hill is putting together some geek lists. Here’s how to take part:

I’d like to build a series of lists: the essential geek reads, movies, shows, and games of the last decade. What do we talk about when we talk about geekdom? This is a two-stage project.
First, we need to build a long list of possibilities. To that end, please use the comments thread to post your own picks for essential geek books, films, shows, and games of the 00s. Or, alternatively, visit Twitter and use these hashtags: #geekreadsofthe00s #geekshowsofthe00s #geekfilmsofthe00s #geekgamesofthe00s.
Next Monday, I’ll take the raw data and turn it over to a panel of noted geek experts. They’ll winnow each rough list down to 10, and put them in order. That list will be here on the blog for everyone to ogle.
Now, to answer some preliminary questions:
SHOULDN’T THERE BE A HASHTAG FOR COMICS? No, I don’t think so. Comics go under “Geek Reads” same as novels. Comics are a part of literature, not separate from it.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE THE 00s? For the purposes of this discussion we’re going to define the 00s as 2000 – 2010. Which is actually, um, 11 years. It’s okay, just go with it.
WHO IS ON THIS SO-CALLED PANEL OF EXPERTS? Not saying. They know who they are and will be revealed in due time.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE “GEEKY”? Ah, we wouldn’t be geeks if we didn’t love academic questions like this one. If it’s the kind of thing people might celebrate at a place like San Deigo Comic Con, or if it’s the kind of thing
io9 might report on, then I think we can say it’s geeky. But that’s a very wide net.

WHAT ABOUT DOCTOR HORRIBLE’S SING-A-LONG BLOG? Let’s call it a TV show. Yes, we all know it will be on the list.

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Brian Wood has a rather cryptic post on his tumblr about a project he is doing with Becky Cloonan at dark Horse. This is all we’re given:
tumblr_lsdw47m3eM1qz58pq

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Mike Mignola has had to cancel his appearance at NYCC.

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Bryan Lee O’Malley shared a Super Mario level he designed when he was 10, as well as answering a bunch of fan questions. Here’s the level and his thoughts on comic to film adaptaions:

rubine_city
My thoughts on “staying true to the source material” are complicated. In general, I think it’s more important that a director’s own voice be expressed. In our case, Edgar Wright and I worked very closely and I think understood each other well, but in the end it’s his film, his vision. Fortunately his vision dovetailed quite well with my own — which really is why we were correctly matched up in the first place.
Any adaptor is going to have a personal interpretation of the source material, the same as any fan has their own. If I asked five directors to tell me the story of Scott Pilgrim, then asked five fans, I’d get ten different stories. Every reader (or viewer) remembers things differently, focuses on different aspects, gets something else out of the story.
Even if I were to have written and directed my own Scott Pilgrim adaptation, it would have been different from the original. I love some aspects of the books, and there are always bits that I regret — but something that I regret might be some fan’s favorite thing in the whole entire universe.



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Chrissie Zullo posted a few of her commisions, including this one of Death on the Titanic:
DeathTitanicLR

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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp show us his Woody, Mark Millar wants to Batman botoxed, Dan Abnett talks to a camera, Albert Underzo retires, Jamie Mckelvie gets his X on, Charles Soule hates scanners, Terry Moree draws more women, Alex Ross reconstructs the superhero, Jeff Smith also talks to some dude and Skottie Young draws a web comic. If you want me to follow a creator i’m not already following, let me know in the comments.



Let’s start with a new Dan Hipp:
WOODY

- Mark Millar was
interviewed by Hero Complex about Kick Ass 2 – both the movie and the comic, and had this to say about the DC relaunch:
“I’m delighted to see DC getting back in the game with their reboot. Making characters who are as old as Donald Duck relevant to a modern audience isn’t easy. I joked about how they were Botoxing these old dudes and squeezing them back into their tights, but in all seriousness it’s been good for retailers and after a long time of soft sales on the bulk of their characters they’ve really got people’s attention again. I love a lot of the guys over there and grew up with these characters. Creatively, it’s not where my head’s at, because I think we need to do what Stan Lee and Jack Kirby did in the ’60s and move forward, creating a new generation of characters and concepts for a 21st century readership. But I like the fact they’ve done something ballsy like this and it’s put money in the pockets of retailers. I don’t know how long it’s going to last in the medium term, but a nice little boost in the meantime.”

-
Dan Abnett vlogs about comics home and abroad:


- Albert Underzo, co-creator of Asterix, has retired at age 84. A true legend.

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Jamie McKelvie shares some preview art for his upcoming Marvel book X-Men: Season One:
tumblr_ls6sjdA0Gu1qzniqdo3_1280

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Charles Soule weighs in on comics piracy:
“I don’t want to be too negative about this stuff, because I know that having an audience is important, and the idea that people care enough about what I’m writing to seek it out – legally or illegally – is still fairly novel to me.  But it still burns a little.  A friend of mine sold a few copies of an upcoming issue of his book at a con, only to see it hit the torrents the next day.  That meant that someone had to buy it from the creator, make small talk with him, look him in the eye (well, probably – you get some weird types at cons), and then turn right around and screw him as hard as he could.  I’m not necessarily even faulting the downloaders that much.  I don’t love that, but I understand it.  Books are expensive, and a lot of them suck.  Sometimes you want to try before you buy, or get something that’s out of print, or… hell, it’s just easier.  I get that (although it’s still crappy!)  But the SCANNERS… now those guys I don’t get.  It’s not like with a CD, where you just have to rip the MP3 and upload it.  That’s a two-minute process.  But scanning a comic book, at least as I understand how it’s done, takes a minimum of 40 minutes, and can be much longer for complex books with lots of 2-page spreads.”

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As well as posting a bunch of great pictures from the summer convention circuit, Terry Moore posted this pic:
BlackCanary-Oracle

- Pittsburgh City Paper has an
interview with Alex Ross. Here’s a morsel:
You have been drawing the same superheroes for 15 years. Do you still find interesting things to do with them visually, and interesting things about their characters?
Absolutely. I've always felt a strong connection to Superman in particular. He can be used as an American icon and can be used to basically contribute various ideas and even ideologies, much like Uncle Sam. Just making stand-alone imagery of him is inspirational. That's enough, for me, to get me charged up. I have a lifelong connection to these characters and I want to reflect that influence back, so there is always much more to give.
Marvels and Kingdom Come have been called "reconstructionist" responses to the 1980s "deconstruction" of superheroes, which saw them psychologically picked apart and made a lot darker. In those two books, the heroes are much stronger and closer to their roots. Was that intentional?
I think myself and the authors of both those books had that instinct in mind. The deconstruction of superheroes was in many ways the destruction of them, and we were trying to remind the reader why these things were valuable and attractive in the first place. I've never lost my love of superheroes completely, though I have had it beaten down and weakened at various times by feeling what I was reading predominantly in the marketplace was either too negative or too dark, too mean-spirited or violent.

- Here’s a video of an
interview with Jeff Smith from sdcc:


- Skottie Young has a few more pages of his
web comic up, including this one:
AshSpit009
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Creator Roundup

shield
This week Dan Hipp gives me a nerdgasm, Phil Hestor goes somewhere, Jeff Lemire spills some ink, Terry Moore speaks to Suicide Girls, Jamie McKelvie draws some people, Mark Waid talks to lawyers, Charles Soule sings a (the) Toni Basil song, Allen Heinberg is on USA Today, Fabio Moon draws a dog and Peter David makes excuses. If you want me to follow a creator i’m not already following, let me know in the comments.



- As always, We begin with a new Dan Hipp artwork:

LOGICAL

- WCFCourier has an
inteview with FireBreather and Anchor creator Phil Hestor. Here’s an excerpt:

Hester lives in North English, a long way from the epicenter of the publishing universe. In the early days, that was not always very convenient. In the digital age, distance is less of a factor of success.
Recently, the wider popular culture has embraced heroes and villains from the graphic novel universe. Spider-Man, Batman, Iron Man, the X-men and Thor have all starred in major motion pictures within the last decade.
"I don't think there has ever been a time when the average citizen knows more about comic book characters," Hester said.
"It's kind of a neat thing that Hollywood is looking more and more to comic books," he added. "I benefitted from that myself."

- As well as reporting Essex County being added to the iBook store, Jeff LeMire posted some photos of his studio. Here’s one:
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Suicide Girls have an interview with Terry Moore about Rachel Rising. Here’s an excerpt:

ALEX DUEBEN: I guess just to get started for people who don’t know, could you talk a little about what Rachel Rising is?
TERRY MOORE: Rachel Rising is a comic book series based on the mystery of Rachel Beck’s murder. The story opens with Rachel climbing out of a shallow grave in the woods to investigate her own murder. It’s creepy.
AD:

Climbing out of one’s own shallow grave is definitely creepy. Was this image the genesis of the book?

TM:

Actually, the first images in my head were more urban. A woman at night, meeting her end. The next night she’s back on the streets. WTF? How could you not get a story out of that?

AD:

The book opens with a gorgeous nine page wordless sequence. What was the thinking behind starting the book off that way and how much of a challenge was it?

TM:
I’ve written a lot of dialogue in my career, but this was one of those moments where there are no words, just nature waking up and something god-awful pushing through the dirt. I thought about having a Sunset Boulevard narrator, but it’s been done so much. I think the Psycho approach is creepier… no sound but the shower running, the blade hitting bone.

- Here’s a work in progress from
Jamie McKelvie:
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- Mark Waid talks about daredevil with products liability litigation website Abnormal Use. An excerpt thus:
JIM DEDMAN: Matt Murdock has two full time jobs:  attorney in private practice and costumed super hero.  You’ve described that as a sort of a “paradox of a vigilante by night, lawyer by day.”  How does he manage doing both those tough jobs?
MARK WAID: Like all good comic book superheroes, he manages to squeeze an awful lot in a 24 hour day.  When I go to the bank and the post office, I’m done, and I have to lie down.  But these guys, in Matt’s case, one of the things that’s enormously helpful to him is that he relies very, very heavily on his partner and best friend, Foggy Nelson. Their dynamic is such that Matt is brilliant in the courtroom.  He is a showman, he is charming, he is well spoken. What Foggy brings to the table is . . .  an eidetic memory for court history and for case history. So he’s the one who was always in law school, nose in the books, 23 hours a day, while Matt was out chasing skirts and stuff.  So, if you will, Matt’s the face, and Foggy’s the brain, and sorry to say, the brains have the harder job.
JD: Nelson & Murdock is a small New York City firm. You’ve mentioned that you’ll be introducing some interns and assistants at the firm in the future, which is foreshadowed at the end of issue three.  How do you go about depicting the day-to-day operations of a law firm in the comic book medium?
MW: With all due respect to the fine lawyers who have represented me in the past and can sue me out of existence today, basic office law work is not the most terribly visual thing in the world for comic books.  So, we don’t spend a whole lot of time in the Nelson & Murdock offices and what time we do there is – to the chagrin of many of my lawyer friends – is sort of the TV and comic version of what a law office looks like, which is not reality.  People having fun all the time.  People are having parties, blah, blah, blah.  Luckily, Marvel has a couple of really good writers who also have legal backgrounds.  Marc Guggenheim is one, and so I’m able to lean on these guys pretty heavily for background and to sort of back stop me to make sure that my rudimentary layman’s knowledge of how a law office works, at least has some grounding in reality.

- In order to prom0te his new series of 27,
Charles Soule has recorded his own version of 9 different one hit wonders. here’s my favourite:


- USA Today have an Interview with Allen Heinberg about Avengers: Childrens Crusade. They report: The events of Children's Crusade will be felt after it ends, Heinberg promises. By the time the final issue is out in January, it will have caught up with Marvel continuity and dovetail into big things involving the Avengers and the X-Men.
"Anybody who hasn't been following Crusade all these months will likely be kicking themselves once we roll into next year," says Avengers editor Tom Brevoort, "so there's still plenty of time to save yourself that mental anguish! It's more crucial to what's about to come than we've been able to let on before now."

- Fabio Moon posted this artwork:
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Peter David has this little titbit: “I’m out in Los Angeles, working with the brilliant writing staff of “Young Justice,” prepping the last few episodes of the second season. While I was there, I was able to watch a completed edition of my first episode of the current season, airing on Cartoon Network. These things are extremely fluid and subject to change, but it’s tentatively scheduled to be broadcast on November 11. When we get closer, I’ll verify as to whether it will indeed be airing on that day. And please don’t ask me the title or what it’s about; I’m afraid that’s secret.”

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Creator Roundup

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This week Dan Hipp remembers September 11, Michael Chabon creates Awesome Man, Terry Moore tries to sell stuff, Warren Ellis gets other people to do his work for him... again, Jeff Lemire does an Interview, JH Williams III can count, Dan Abnett talks to a camera and Jamie McKelvie warms up. If you want me to follow a creator i’m not already following, let me know in the comments.




- Dan Hipp has a few more artworks up, including this one on September 11:
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The Wall Street Journal has an interview With Michael Chabon about his forthcoming Children’s Book “The Astonishing Secret of Awesome Man”. Here’s the cover and an excerpt:
awesome-man
How did you come up with the idea for Awesome Man, who has amazing physical strength but gets tired and cranky sometimes?
This was a story that I wanted to write for him. He’s at the age when, boys in particular, you get into kindergarten and it becomes much more important that you know how to control your body and strength, to restrain yourself and hold yourself back. He was working through a lot of that stuff and occasionally struggling with it. Part of the recipe of a four or five-year-old boy is superheroes and fascination with superheroes. They want to wear costumes all the time. They’ll wear their costumes to school. Part of what makes a superhero a superhero is the ability to use his body and have this incredible power and strength. It seemed like the superhero was a perfect figure to create a little story about someone who needs to control his power and recognize the limits of his power.

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Terry Moore reports his new art book, ‘Hot Girls, Cold Feet’ will be out in time for Christmas. Here’s the cover:
Diamond-AD-Hot-Girls-Cold-Feet

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Warren Ellis reports that SKV (by Warren Ellis & D’Israeli) has been reprinted. He’s also getting got friends to do three Panel comics each day this week. here’s one from PJ Holden:
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Jeff Lemire was interviewed by USA Today about Frankenstein: Agent of Shade. Here’s an Excerpt:
Lemire's plan for the book is to have three- or four-issue story lines with one-off Frankenstein solo adventures in between that show him at different points in the 20th century. The writer has him going to Vietnam in one, and facing off with Al Capone in another.
"We discover that he was actually history's hidden hero, where he's been around and active — and S.H.A.D.E. has, as well — for the entire 20th century but no one really knew," he says.
"As we do that, I also want to get deeper into his origin and see what makes this monster basically want to protect humanity. We probably would fear him if we knew he existed."

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JH Williams III has been counting down to the release of Batwoman with a new artwork every day. Here’s Mondays:
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Dan Abnett vlogs:


- J
amie Mckelvie posted this Warm-up sketch of x-23:
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If you want me to follow a creator i’m not already following, let me know in the comments.
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Creator Roundup

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Every Thursday we take a closer look at what’s going on in the world of comic creators. this week, Dan Hipp has a new artwork, Warren Ellis gets his friends to do the work for him, Ben Templesmith is going to a convention, Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon put on a show, Jim Rugg draws something in colour, Brian K Vaughan talks to somebody, JH Williams III talks Batwoman and Craig Thompson has a new graphic novel.




- Dan Hipp has a new artwork:FRODO

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Warren Ellis had a ‘Guest Informant’ for every day this week - Matthew Sheret, Collen Nika (twice), Jess Nevins and Jan Chipchase. He also shares his reflections of the past UK summer.

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Ben Templesmith added his commissions pricing for the upcoming NYCC and this watercolour:
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Gabriel Ba reports the new Casanova series as well as an exhibition of casanova pages at the Floating Wall in Portland. There work is also on display in China with the IllustriaBrazil Exhibition.

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Jim Rugg will be at the university of Maryland this Friday the 9th as part of a roundtable discussion called Bleeding the Narrative: Comics in Art and Culture. He also contributed this artwork to DC fifty-TOO!:
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- Over at
Multiversity comics, Brian K Vaughn discusses his new series SAGA. here’s an extract:
saga
In January, we had an interview with Eric Stephenson (Image's publisher) in which we asked who would he want to work with if he could work with one person. His answer was a simple "Brian K. Vaughan." Was SAGA already in the works back then? How did the decision to release this through Image come together?

BKV: Saga was definitely in the seedling stage back then, but I hadn't started thinking about potential publishers yet, though Eric and Robert Kirkman had both been very inviting over the years. After I pitched the basic concept of the series to Fiona, I mentioned that I wanted to try something new, and she was really enthusiastic about doing this a little more independently. We worked up a quick proposal for the Image guys, and they greenlit it on impact. The whole experience has been great so far.


For those that do not know (and who apparently do not like press releases), what can you tell us about the concept of SAGA?

BKV: Well, the series isn't launching until next year, so I'm hoping to keep as much of the story under wraps as possible. Sorry, I blame my time with Bad Robot! But I can say that Saga is a far-out sci-fi/fantasy about the all-too-real experience of starting a family in a time of never-ending war. And the artwork is breathtaking.”

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JH Williams III shared this artwork and and this interview he did with Frontiers about Batwoman. here’s an extract:
“What’s the biggest difference between this new Batwoman series and her initial Detective Comics run?
The type of story we’re leading off with. Her last stint was boiled down to her origin and the basic superhero versus ultimate nemesis sort of thing. We wanted to expand on that because she needs a pantheon of villains, so we set out to do that in ways that are fun. We do it in the art a lot, mixing styles, and we brought that into the writing, too. The lead story deviates in that way—even though it’s very much a continuation of what came before and what’s motivating her now, the foe she faces is a very different one [from last time]. The first arc is a very much supernatural horror story and what that’s like for a costumed or uniformed vigilante who doesn’t have superpowers per se. It’s pretty intriguing, but it’s just one piece of a bigger picture we are going to expand upon over the first three arcs.”
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- Blankets author
Craig Thompson discusses his upcoming Graphic novel habibi with Publisher’s Weekly:
“PWCW: Throughout the book you obviously reference stories of the Bible and the Quran, but in the notes in the back I noticed you also drew on many other texts in the background art throughout. How much research went into this book?
 
CT: Well I spent two years on the entire writing process before I actually dove into the drawing, the final drawing. So during those two years I sort of wandered off on many tangents in the same way that the book does. So the research and the writing were very integrated. But the sort of skeleton of the book sort of emerged right from the start subconsciously, and then was filled in by research.
 
PWCW: So after two years writing, how long did the art take?
 
CT: I got really bogged down and lost in the writing process. I finished the first draft in a year but then spent another year wrestling with it and editing it and finally just resolved to start drawing the pages even though I didn’t know how the book would end. So in the Fall of 2006 I sat down to draw the final art and then finished in fall of 2010. And so this last year has been the production and design and all the technical details of getting the book off to press.”
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