Wilks Wilkinson by Matt Kyme.

‘Wilks’ Wilkinson by Matt Kyme — Tales to Admonish #3

You know what?

There are far too many people that I need to thank.

And you know how I’ve realized this? The acknowledgements sections in my books run for pages on end, even when I reduce the font-size and you need a magnifying glass.

You should try writing your own, whatever your lot in life, and when truly nutting it over you’ll likely find the exact same thing. Not the eyepiece, but the list-size. I’m not complaining here — far from it, I’m indebted, hugely appreciative, and am in turn inspired by these people.

And sometimes we forget to, well, acknowledge all that they have given to us — so this is my posting to go somewhere toward rectifying the issue.

I wrote this before, a few days ago, when I was especially moved by the support and encouragement I’ve been getting from a wad of remarkable people. WordPress promptly “lost” the post and all that was written, albeit gushing.

Now, however, it’s humid and sweltering in Tokyo and hard to get all excited about anything except the refrigerator (my new best friend). Obviously, I cannot wait for the Melbourne trip coming up in less than a couple of weeks in order to chill down — though I’ll prob’ly whine about the weather there too, the moment I set foot off the plane.

Huh. Wasn’t this posting supposed to be all about saying cheers?

OK, so here we go.

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Bullet Gal 4 COVERNow that June (2014) wraps itself up with a neat little bow, I’ve finally found a miniature window of opportunity to update this blog thing. Besides, it’s pissing down and humid here in Tokyo so I figure I need a distraction.

My own fault for lack of time, if not the weather — between working the day-job and trying to be a hopefully sufficient dad to Cocoa, I’ve been plodding away at a new comic book (titled Bullet Gal) which we’re publishing through IF? Commix from August.

I’ve just started #4 (see mock-up cover art here), but we’ll be launching the first two issues in Melbourne (Australia) on Sunday 17th August @ Classic Comics in the CBD. I’ll also be printing up copies of #3 for the day — since I’ll actually be there (and home) for the first time in three years.

The launch is the first IF? Commix jaunt Matt Kyme and I have put on, and we’ll be unveiling 5 local titles (actually 6-7 comics), ranging in price from $1 for a printed mini-comic to $15 (two graphic novels). The jewel in our ramshackle crown is the comic Matt and I do together — Tales to Admonish — and we’ll have #3 ready to roll for the gig.

Mike Speakman and his mates will also be launching Carmen, while Matt and I are doing the Tobacco-Stained Mountain Goat and That Bulletproof Kid graphic novels.

Bullet Gal is my other baby — something I started working on after I finished TSMG in May.

It’s basically telling the back-story of Mitzi, a.k.a. Bullet Gal, who made appearances in Tales to Admonish #2 and my novel Who is Killing the Great Capes of Heropa? (which I’m also currently converting into a comic book script — more news later). We’ve already got some great reviews of the first couple of issues thanks to Steven Alloway @ Fanboy Comics, Shawn Vogt @ Weird and Wonderful Reads, Paul Bowler @ Sci-Fi Jubilee, and John Kowalski @ Word of the Nerd.

LAUNCH POSTER REDUX FX 1

I’m really happy with the way it’s shaping up, and if anyone’s vaguely interested in this noir/crime/mystery romp, pre-orders for $1 of the digital versions are online @ IF? Commix.

Meanwhile my fourth novel Depth Charging Ice Planet Goth is out and about early, and already up on the various international forms of Amazon — see links to the right-hand side of the page @ Perfect Edge Books. Amazon USA in fact has a 31% discount on pre-orders, while at Amazon UK pre-order saves 25%. Looks like the Kindle will be available from the official release date (July 25th).

Which brings me to the second launch I’ll be doing in Melbourne in August.

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Just realized it’s been a month since my last self-indulgent entry/soapboxing here, so thought I’d rattle off something quickly before heading to work.

TTA 3 FRONT COVER ART

It’s been a mad 4-week hiatus, one in which (a) the Kickstarter campaign for the Tobacco-Stained Mountain Goat graphic novel ended (and successfully — thanks to all who supported!) and the book was finished up, (b) I started fishing for reviews and feedback for my next novel Depth Charging Ice Planet Goth, which’ll be officially published on July 25th, (c) I got author copies of same and read this in a few days, (d) I re-read Raymond Chandler’s The Long Goodbye and Farewell, My Lovely, (e) I manhandled Mark Millar’s Superman: Red Son and re-read the original Kick-Ass, (f) I finished off plotting for our comic book Tales to Admonish #3, and also did the cover art this week (see here), while artist extraordinaire Matt Kyme is currently doing the inside art, (g) I did a mini-comic called Bullet Gal, and (h) I plodded away at my regular day job… teaching English.

But wait, there’s more…

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I’m not sure if the title of this posting makes it sound terribly Shakespearean (with emphasis on the ‘terrible’ bit) or I’m swiping moniker ideas from Ray Bradbury (he penned Something Wicked This Way Comes, remember?).

Anyway, it’s almost May, and the year is flying by. Probably doesn’t help to have been living, breathing, dreaming, eating and… um… excreting this graphic novel thingamajig over the past six-odd weeks, which I pretty much finished off last night, at 3:00 a.m., at the 140-page mark. It’s longer than expected, and I’m upping the colour ante from 50% to 75% — so if you’re keen at all to take a peek, show support and pre-order the beastie via Kickstarter, you can do so here over the next 24 days.

TSMG COVER smallerHere’s the mock-up front cover artwork. I still have quite a bit of tweaking/fiddling to do, but we’re not printing until July so I’m loving the extra time. Also Cocoa and I are going to sit down and do her pages this week.

Anyway, back to the grindstone, which I’m actually loving. Next entry I should also be back more focused on Depth Charging Ice Planet Goth, which is being published also in July, on the 25th.

Hope all’s cool at your end too. ;)

Excerpt, TSMG graphic novel

Excerpt, TSMG graphic novel

I feel like I haven’t had time over the past three weeks to scratch my bum, but actually I have — in between being flat-out promoting the Kickstarter campaign for the Tobacco-Stained Mountain Goat graphic novel — which was successful, by the way! — plus doing the 132-page graphic novel itself (I’m doing the art along with words) and starting to do promo for next novel Depth Charging Ice Planet Goth (out in July).

On top of that, this week spring vacation ended and we’ve started a new school year, so I’m back teaching.

OK, so I’ve (almost) come to grips with the fact that we hit our goal — almost. Thanks seriously must go out to everyone concerned, either in making pledges or helping to get word out there. You all positively rock.

The book is pretty much finished, albeit in rough style, so I’m now tweaking the lot, and working with Cocoa on her pages this week.

We’re definitely very early in finishing production (which is great, and mostly inspired by the people mentioned above); I spoke with the printer in Melbourne today, and we’re set to roll with publishing in July as per schedule.

The Kickstarter doesn’t actually finish until May 23, so we’ve set up an option there to pre-order the graphic novel for $30 inclusive of postage to anywhere in the world.

Excerpt, Page 87—TSMG

Excerpt, Page 87—TSMG

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ImageLots happening this week, and not just the upcoming cherry blossoms starting to bud round Tokyo, Cocoa wrapping up Grade 2 today, or the visit to this city of two of my best mates in the world.

First up, I just received the full cover art for my next novel Depth Charging Ice Planet Goth — big thanks to Perfect Edge Books and  artists Nick, Kmye Chan and Sukapon-ta, as well as the early reviewers whose blurbs appear on the back cover or on the first two pages inside the novel — along with confirmation of the publication date (25th July, 2014) and the number of pages (342).

ImageSecondly, this week I got stuck into the creation of a new graphic novel interpretation of my first novel Tobacco-Stained Mountain Goat. Just confirmed yesterday? We’re going to test out the waters of a Kickstarter campaign to fund this project — so please check out the details HERE. The comic book adaptation, while touching upon similar territory as the novel — with key characters Floyd and Laurel — will also be a little different, and include material from my ulterior tomes.

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Prima Ballerina_Hannah BuenaToday I’m slipping in here an excerpt from my last novel Who is Killing the Great Capes of Heropa?, published via Perfect Edge Books in September last year. This is Chapter #132, from Page 188, in which our hero Jack tails his teammate the Brick out into the city.

The Brick, for anyone who hasn’t figured this out yet, is hugely inspired by Jack Kirby, Stan Lee and Joe Sinnott’s vision of the Thing in Marvel’s Fantastic Four comic books in the mid 1960s — and the opening to this passage pays equal homage to the sequence in the film Singin’ in the Rain (1952) in which Gene Kelly dances and sings… in the rain.

The store names are one giveaway.

There’re also references to Johnny Guitar (a 1954 Republic Pictures western starring Joan Crawford and Sterling Hayden), and the dance studio is called ‘Satori’ because this is is a Japanese Buddhist term for awakening, “comprehension; understanding”, etc, etc.

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