The Temporal – Now on ComiXology!

“Art is never finished, only abandoned.”  – Leonardo da Vinci

Today sees the digital release of my sci-fi comic book The Temporal!

While I’ve been selling this 32-page one-shot at conventions for the past few months, I finally decided to toss it up on ComiXology for just $0.99 and make it accessible to the masses.

The Temporal, with art by Kristian Rossi, is the story of a young scientist who is contracted by the U.S. Military to crack the secrets of time travel. But before he hands the project over to the military, he just needs to make one small adjustment to his past. And of course, that’s where things go bonkers.

This comic book has kind of a neat story behind it and I wanted to share it. Besides, this is my websites, so I have carte blanche to do whatever I want.

Want to hear a secret? The Temporal was actually one of my first comics I made.

Pause for dramatic effect. Cut to reaction shot.

Despite the fact that in our present day it is the year 2015 (I’m serious, check a calendar), this comic book has been complete since 2012.

Temporal_pg01In fact, this is the project that originally brought me together with Argentinian artist Kristian Rossi. I was advertising online for someone to draw my time travel comic and as luck would have it, Kristian was looking to get hired to make a comic book. He was kind enough to read over the script he agreed to come aboard for the one-shot and over the course of several months in 2011 we put the thing together.

Right as we finished The Temporal I got word that my crime-fiction miniseries Chambers had been greenlit for publication by Arcana Studio. In a spin of bad luck, the original artist who had done the pitch pages and was attached to the book dropped out. Don’t you hate it when that happens? It was up to me to find a replacement or put the project on the shelf. Working with Kristian had been such a positive experience–super professional, super nice, super talented–so I pitched him the 4-issue miniseries to see if it would be up his alley.

Kristian already had a great dark, noirish style, which was a perfect match for Chambers and after reading the scripts he did a test page to show the publisher he could handle completing the book from the ground up. Between you, me and the walls, the pages Kristian produced knocked the former artist out of the water. He brought this great cinematic eye to the world and I’m still super proud of the series, which came out in 2013.

As a side note, Kristian also helped me through one of the toughest parts of Chambers… the ending. If you’ve read the comic (and if you haven’t, do us both a solid and check it out) you may be aware that it has a whopper of an ending. It was an ending I worried might not be the right one. When I brought up the idea of changing it, Kristian told me that when he read the original scripts the ending gave him chills. Chills! We kept it. And I’m glad we did.

Temporal_pg02With time, budgets and energies being put into Chambers over the course of 2012/2013, The Temporal had to take a back seat. Kristian had penciled and inked all 32 pages and I had every intention of getting it colored, but the funds to do so constantly went toward other things. Once Chambers had wrapped I dove into The Undoubtables. Once that wrapped I was knee-deep in Unit 44. It was quickly becoming apparent that, must to my dismay, The Temporal was going to stay on the shelf for some time. Other things were cooking and since the stove was hot I had to keep putting on the Jiffy Pop. That’s a weird analogy, right there.

Then something interesting happened… as reviews started to come in for Chambers, a recurring theme from the reviewers bubbled to the surface… many offered that Kristian’s line work was strong and could likely stand on its own without color. Several reviewers said they would have loved to have read the crime series in black and white.

As I thought back on that a few months ago, it hit me… here I was just sitting on The Temporal… a Kristian Rossi goldmine of black and white comic pages. While the story is from early in my career, rather than hold the book hostage in a closet, I should put it out there to let fans of time travel stories enjoy the narrative and allow them to appreciate Kristian’s art.

Temporal_pg03While I would have loved to see the book in color, I think the comic is a great representation of two youthful creators who are made something together while having a whole lot of fun. It’s like with rock music… a band has their entire life to write their first album and only two years to write the second. This is why the first album is always favored in the long run: they don’t know the rules. More importantly, they don’t care about the rules.

So it’s done. The Temporal is out today on ComiXology for anyone who would like to give it a read. I owe a lot to the experience of making it.

Look at it this way… without The Temporal there would be no Chambers. Without Chambers, no Undoubtables. No Unit 44. No Hipsters Vs. Rednecks. It’s the butterfly effect in action.

I spent two years working with Kristian and he’s an awesome friend and collaborator. Go enjoy his talents and hard work then give him an e-high five. The dude’s amazing.

What Ever Happened to: The Temporal

I decided to start a new segment on the blog where I can talk about a little bit about projects of mine that, for one reason or another, aren’t getting as much “screen time” as some of the others.

Whether these projects are on hiatus, soon to be released or simply as dead as parachute pants, I thought I’d given an update which will help get us all excited for things coming up over the course of 2014.

Sounds like a blast, right?
Of course it does!

So, let’s get started with — what ever happened to…

Temporal

THE TEMPORAL is a 32-page sci-fi one-shot that I wrote back in 2011 (way, way back) and was the project that originally brought me together with one of my favorite collaborators, Kristian Rossi, who you may recognize as the artist from a little comic book called Chambers. Kristian and I initially connected through DigitalWebbing.com and it was off to the races and the start of a solid friendship.

When you’re looking to break into comics, the first thing you (should) do is go make comics. I hired Kristian to draw this one-and-done story about time travel, science and the ramifications of our decisions and he completed pencils and inks on the book in 2012. Ever since, the book has sat, just waiting for its time to shine.

As other projects demanded time and attention (and money), I strayed away from getting colors added to this book in order to get some publisher-backed projects out the door. In 2013 I sat down and lettered The Temporal, so what we have now is a complete, 32-page black and white comic book.

In November, I launched my free sci-fi webcomic, Innovation, that centers around extreme scientific research and the pros and cons that come along with advancing technology. It’s since become very clear to me that Innovation was continuing many of the themes that I had established in The Temporal, so I decided to fold the book into the same universe and the one-shot will be a lead-off to the second story arc that I have planned.

Where, how and when can you get it? That’s yet to be determined, but it’s awesome having this completed project “in the pocket,” as it’s something that I can unleash if/when my publishing schedule slows down. One thing is for sure, though — it will see light in 2014. It’s long overdue, and I can’t wait to see what you think of it.

TempCoverTest

The Temporal Update #8

Less than a month has passed since colorist Cristian Sabarre was brought on to the creative team for my time travel one-shot comic, THE TEMPORAL, and pages are already starting to make their way in.

For this book, I’ve had more conversations about color than with any past project. Sometimes as readers we don’t consider the tones and palettes that work their way into the books each week, but each decision plays a vital role in conveying specific emotions to the reader. It’s a great learning process and is something I will continue to consider when scripting future stories.

I’m excited about this book since it’s been in the works for quite a long time, but it’s amazing to see progress continue along. I look forward to guiding this tale down the pipe toward completion.

Another exciting this about this book is that it’s a free agent. All of my other projects have been developed with a publisher firmly attached, but this one-shot was created under my own rules, my own timelines, and I don’t have any non-disclosure agreements preventing me from sharing parts of the book. (Wes — are NDAs the reason we haven’t seen any finished art for CHAMBERS or THE UNDOUBTABLES??)

Upon completion of this project I plan to shop it around to some very specific people, but I won’t hesitate to self-publish it should there be no takers. (Why yes, it is, but I understand why they are in place.)

Be prepared to get all kinds of snippets and teasers for this book as it builds toward completion.

In fact, why wait? Here’s a peek at my favorite part of any comic book: PAGE ONE / PANEL 1.

Pencils and inks by the indelible, Kristian Rossi and colors by Cristian Sabarre. Words that you can’t see yet by me.

I never thought that I would write about a hot dog cart in a comic script, and yet…here we are.

TempColorSnip1

The Temporal Update #7

I’m dropping an update on a book I haven’t talked about in quite some time: THE TEMPORAL.

For anyone who may have forgotten, this is a 32-page one-shot about science, time travel, and those pesky paradoxes that come with it.

This was the story that originally brought me together with artist Kristian Rossi before our collaboration on the upcoming crime graphic novel, Chambers.

Art for this project has been complete for some time and I finally found a colorist who I believe will bring a great style to this already fantastic-looking tale. Cristian Sabarre is joining the team and if all goes to plan, this book should be complete within a few months and one way or another, I’ll be getting it into your hands.

Yes—the art team is made up of Kristian and Cristian. How crazy/cool is that?

Here’s a sneak peek from Cristian’s color test page. We’re still working to find the best palette for this story so that the mood and tone are maximized but I’m excited to see how it develops. It’s wonderful to work with such talented people.

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The Temporal Update #6

As you may or may not know, my comic books The Undoubtables and Chambers are in various states of production, but let’s not forget about my self-publishing venture, The Temporal. This 32 page time travel story drawn by Kristian Rossi is still in progress, though it’s moving slowly due to energy/time/money being put into these other books to be published. I anticipate this as a 2012 release, but the world of comics can be unpredictable!

Since it’s been a while since I’ve mentioned the book, I thought I’d share some concept cover art. This isn’t the finished version, but a mere sample of what’s to come!

Pencils, inks, and colors by Kristian Rossi.