“In the Drink” now in Print!

I’m excited to announce that The Gathering: Survival anthology has hit the stands published by GrayHaven Comics. If you pick it up (for just $3.50) then you’ll be treated to 36 pages of awesomeness, three of which are a short comic comic called In the Drink, written by me and brought to life by the very talented writer/artist, Robyn Seale.

If there’s one thing that this project has reminded me of, it’s that comics are not a race.

Robyn and I started discussion on this piece in March of 2013 and by June had all three pages complete and turned in to the publisher. Then, as happens in comics…we waited. Anthologies require extra patience as the other creative teams finish their contributions and the publisher finds a spot for the book on its schedule. So 1.5 years later… here we are, bringing In the Drink to your eyeballs.

Personally, I’m super excited about this piece because I did something I never had before…the story is completely silent. No dialogue, no captions…just a title, credits and your imagination to see the story along.

After a brutal car crash a man must fight for survival, no matter what the cost and to make matters worse, he must do so underwater.

Being a silent story, it allowed Robyn to showcase her amazing storytelling chops and I’m proud of how the pages came out. She’ll run you through the whole range of emotions, so be prepared for some feels!

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In addition to our short, you’re guaranteed to read fresh stories by some of the best and brightest up-and-coming talent in comics.

While on the GrayHaven site, consider picking up some of the publisher’s other wonderful anthologies and ongoing titles. I also have stories featured in the Crime, Sci-Fi 2 and Spies and Public Domain volumes, should you need some recommendations.

A big thanks goes out to the GrayHaven team for their support of both independent comics and burgeoning creators. I’m happy to report that GrayHaven will publish another short of mine soon in the Lil Kaiju anthology, which is shaping up to be an amazing collection of talent.

In The Drink Update #4

This has been one heck of a week and it’s only Wednesday!

Yesterday I talked about finishing up my short spy comic COMPROMISED, but today I bring word that I’ve also received the completed files form my 3-page comic IN THE DRINK which was brought to life by the wonderful Robyn Seale.

She had originally gotten in touch when I was seeking a collaborater for the aforementioned Spy comic, but she was moments behind the artist who ultimately brought it to life. After checking out her art and her webcomic, The Watcher of Yaathagggu, I knew that she was someone that I needed to work with. One of the things that jumped out at me while reading “The Watcher” was her storytelling ability.

In my opinion, with comics, storytelling ability is the number one skill that an artist can have. If a page looks like a bunch of disjointed, inconsistent and unconnected pictures, the reader falls out of the story. As a writer, I like to gauge the storytelling ability of my collaborators by asking myself one major question: “can I delete all of the dialogue here and have the story still make sense?”

I feel like the biggest compliment that I can pay and artist is to delete all of my silly words and let the image speak for itself whether it’s an action, an emotion or a sequence of events.

I gave Robyn an interesting challenge because the story that I had written was already completely silent. No pressure, right? The story takes place completely underwater and last time I checked, no one can hear me speak when I’m immersed in liquid. I considered the possibility of using captions to give an internal monologue to the main character, but this is one of those times where if the art could speak for itself, it would say more than my words or dialogue ever could.

In this tale, two characters share an interaction and Robyn used their body language and eyeballs to convey everything that needed to be said. At just three pages, the story is a very quick read, but when I shared it with my best friend, who gets to read all of my comics and tear them apart in a constructive manner, he told me that the comic was “chilling.”

Now that’s what I’m talking about.

The commitment to this project caused Robyn to miss deadlines on her webcomic, and while I feel completely terrible about that, she’s produced some of her best work to date and I really can’t wait for everyone to be able to check it out.

This one will be released in the Survival Anthology from GrayHaven Comics in April of 2014.

Good things come to those who wait.

Quick! Distract them with art!

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In The Drink Update #3

My upcoming survival short, IN THE DRINK is barreling toward completion with the ever-talented Robyn Seale steering the ship through the inking process.

You see there? I can make water references with the best of them.

What’s interesting about this three-page comic is that it’s completely silent. No words. No captions. No dialogue. It relied completely on Robyn to tell the story visually while conveying the proper emotions and tension levels.

She nailed it.

One thing that I look for in artistic collaborators is a strong storytelling ability and while discussing this project with Robyn, I snuck onto her website and read every single installment of her webcomic, The Watcher of Yaathagggu. Her work there proved that she was the right artist for the job. From there, it was a simple process of begging her to lend her talents to my underwater tale.

Upon completion, this comic will go into the hopper and be released in April of 2014 in the Survival Anthology from GrayHaven Comics. I really hope that we have flying cars by then.

To whet your appetite, here’s a look at a silent-riffic panel from our upcoming story.

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In The Drink Update #2

After receiving some thumbnail sketches last week for my upcoming short, IN THE DRINK, I received a a quick turnaround on the finished blue-line pencils.

There’s something exciting about working with an artist for the first time. As a writer, you’re not one hundred percent sure exactly what you’re going to get. Sometimes you’re worried that your script might not truly convey your story, or the artist won’t interpret it correctly. Other times you know it’s going to be awesome. I was absolutely thrilled to receive the files from artist Robyn Seale. She pulled the images right out of my brain. She absolutely hit the nail on the head.

Her style is different than any artist I’ve worked with before, but that’s half the fun! It’s great to see get art from the artist and realize that in your mind, you can’t imagine anyone else drawing it. I’m happy to have had a chance to collaborate with her!

This 3-page short will be published by GrayHaven Comics in their Survival anthology due out in April, 2014.

This was a good weekend for some comic-making goodness. Maybe there was something in the water.

Heh.

Lots more news to share over the course of the week.

I love the vibe I get from this panel. I think it sums our story quite nicely.

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In The Drink Update #1

Hot off the heels of my new project announcements, I’m already seeing art for both of them.

SketchesIt’s wonderful when people are energized about a project and eager to work on them. Whether this is because of the script, the subject matter or the story itself, it’s always an absolute joy to collaborate with people who are equally as driven and motivated.

Robyn Seale is no exception and she already dropped some fantastic character sketches in my inbox for our 3-page comic, IN THE DRINK that will be released in 2014 (I know, right?) via the Survival Anthology from GrayHaven Comics.

I love being ahead of deadline!

Enjoy a quick look and stay tuned for more snippets and sneak peeks of my upcoming funny books!