Category Archives: Image

Top Cow Talent Hunt

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Top Cow finally announced the winners of the Top Cow Talent Hunt and… I came close.

My script  won a “runner up” position in the competition, so I will be paid to write a 6-8 page story for Top Cow, which they will include in an upcoming anthology book.  I’m thankful that a company like Top Cow gives people the opportunity to do this and I’m excited to write a really great 6-8 pages that will hopefully blow some goddamn minds.

That all being said, I’d like to offer up my experience writing, and entering this contest while also allowing you to read the script that I submitted, and the current, final draft which exists  after I took a five month break not looking at or thinking about it, and then found a lot of things I felt could be sharpened up.

Full disclosure: I had never read a Top Cow comic before deciding to enter this contest, so I went and found the first five issues of The Darkness (the only Top Cow property I’m somewhat familiar with – I did read comics in the 90’s after all…)

So, I read the first five issues of The Darkness and… I still didn’t understand anything about the world, mythology or characters. I couldn’t even tell if the main character, Jackie Estacado, was a hero or a villain. I decided to simply  look up the Wikipedia page for The Darkness instead and to write a script based off of the basics that I could glean from these limited sources.

The rules of the Talent Hunt stated that you had to frame the story as a flash-back, one which was narrated by a current character, but one who was not featured in the main story. That made it easier for me, because I could create a character that didn’t have to be a slave to a continuity I was unfamiliar with. It freed me up to only have to know the basics, just enough to couch my story within, so in the end, my unfamiliarity with The Darkness world didn’t matter much.

I have always wanted to write a story which takes place during the great fire of London in 1666, originally I had envisioned it as a separate story involving murder and witchcraft, but I thought that context might fit well for The Darkness too. So I took that germ of an idea, inserted a few real people and locations which were intrinsically linked to said fire, and created a revisionist history that incorporated The Darkness.

After coming up with the initial idea I wrote the script in two days, then I ignored it for a week, went back through doing a quick edit and decided I was done. I’m pretty sure this was a mistake… I didn’t devote any real time to it (I was crazy busy during all of this time, so it was a low-priority for me) and I only did one edit on it before submitting it.

If I could go back I’d make sure to edit, edit, edit edit and tighten that thing up like crazy before I sent it. Perhaps that would have pushed me above “runner up” – perhaps not. All I know is, it was great fun and even though I certainly have some regrets about how seriously I took it, I still think I wrote an interesting little slice of comic fiction.

Without any further adieu here they are for you to read, dissect and shit all over if you so desire: “Baptism by Fire”

Enjoy?

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CA Reviews: Secret – One: Teeth With Which To Eat

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Secret was just what I needed.

I’ve grown oh-so-tired during these past few months with cape books and I’ve been desperately trying to expand my comic genre horizons. As a life-long DC fan the majority of the New 52 leaves me bored, dismayed and actually, more than a bit annoyed. I left Marvel in the 90’s and I’ve never really gone back (Waid’s current Daredevil is fucking great though!) it seems things have become very complicated in the interim; there are a ridiculous amount of Marvel titles out every month and it discombobulates me completely while standing in my LCS, so I’ve never been presented with a good segue back into the universe. However, Image has been my saving grace as of late. They’ve been consistent in putting out unique and well crafted books that have short and snappy runs or are limited series in one way or another.

So, about Secret? Riiiight, well…

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CA Interviews Comic Writer Kevin Mellon

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We sat down with comic book artist Kevin Mellon recently, and you know what?

Besides near constant Skype connection issues from our end and a hoarse, sick and extremely medicated interviewer… it all went pretty damn good.

Kevin speaks about current and past projects, working in the industry, inspiration and what it takes to “break in” to the comics game.

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CA Reviews: “Our Love Is Real”

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(again, ignore my crap iPhone photography – a signed copy!)

Our Love is Real (One Shot) –

Writer: Sam Humphries

Artist: Steven Sanders

What.

The.

Fuck.

Did I just read?

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CA Reviews: “Heart” #1

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(please excuse my bad iPhone photography, I was just stoked to score a signed copy)

Heart #1 –

Writer: Blair Butler

Artist: Kevin Mellon

This book has a few things going for it that you may think would guarantee it a good review from me: it takes place in Kansas City (my home town, born and raised) and it is written and drawn by two KC natives…

However, this book also has a rather large hurdle to overcome with me as well: my almost negative interest in MMA fighting (that’s a whole other story). As you can see, the scales begin to balance out.

This is all a game though, semantic, mental masturbation – because once I read the book I realized that none of the above  criteria mattered in the slightest, because thankfully, I possess enough integrity (read, I’m an great guy/asshole) to either praise or rip it apart based on its own merits as a piece of work created within the context of the comics medium.

To wit:

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Review Roundup July – September 2011

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Here are past reviews originally posted on the old site – all migrated here to this one convenient post.

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