Greetings! As of right now, I am about a 1/4 done with Dom's book. It still doesn't have a title, or a cover, but I have time. I had a post on Facebook for title suggestions and there were many, but right now I'm leaning towards "Through the Eyes of Death". It's a solid name given this entire book is centered around a zombie. I'm at about 16k words into this first draft, and by this weekend I'd like to see it at 20k. As long as I have a paperback copy for the Kansas City Comic Com in August, I'll be happy.
I've finished the 2nd draft edits for Mar-mar. I'll probably give that another week, or so before I give it one last going over. I've also been asked to letter a comic titled Enstranged. I'm about half way done with that and look to be finished by the end of the weekend.
That's about all that's going on right now, besides trying to find a job I can do from home.
Domitianus's book is coming along well. I have a couple people reading what I have (about 10k words) to make sure it's solid. This first chunk of book is the hardest to write, so I want to make sure it's entertaining. If you have any interest in checking out a non-edited, clearly work in progress piece, hit me up and I'll send you a copy. Otherwise, I'm almost over the hump and the writing will pick up afterwards.
I don't remember if I mentioned it last update, or if I had picked up the work at that point, but I wrote another 8 page story for Planetscape. It's called Mar-mar of Tar-tar. It's effectively a ghostwriting gig that was developed by an artist and his two kids. It's a super fun story about a monster who is dragon relocator. I don't want to say too much, but I'll post some pics once I get them. It won't be published until the next issue of Planetscape, so it'll be a while. Suffice it to say, the script has a first draft and sometime next week I'll look it over. I don't like sitting on a project, so that's why I completed it so early.
I've also started taking paid lettering/writing gigs as of last night. I haven't had any offers yet, but it's only been...6 hours since I posted it, so I'm not terribly concerned. Besides, it costs me nothing but a moment to write up an ad and post it on Facebook. So, even if I don' get any offers, I'm not out anything.
Last thing of note: there still isn't a cover for Dom's book, or a real title. I should probably get on that.
Dom, in case you're unaware, is a character that came along in the 4th book to show the flip side/worst case scenario of Uhler's condition. In short, he's a zombie. In the long...you'll just have to read one of my books! Again, for the uninitiated, CoM book 1 has a couple chapters on this zombie thing I speak of, and then Dom's story is how/what happened to him. Trust me, it's not the typical zombie story, so stop rolling your eyes. I wanted to try to make sense of the strange evolution of the zombie genre - these stories are my answer. Will Dom's story be a standalone, yes. Do you need to read CoM first, not at all. The whole point of this CoM universe was to allow me the freedom to branch into different genres (Hitori - historical fantasy, Death Squad -steampunk and mythology, Dom - horror) and to allow those books to be new entrances to the world as a whole. Sure, there will be some overlap at the end of Dom's book with CoM, but that's only because his story ends with the characters in that series.
And if you haven't noticed, I do not have a proper name for Dom's book yet. I think Domitianus as a book title isn't going to sell. I need something more catchy.
The book on Dom is slowly coming along. It's a very challenging topic to write for a number of reasons, but mostly because of his current status in the book. At the moment I'm telling the story from a 3rd person perspective, of a man who can not hear, speak, taste, feel, or has any control over his own body. In short, all he can do is see a few feet in front of him and play audience to his body's every monstrous whim. It sounds awesome, and it should be a good read, but it's not an easy thing to write and keep interesting. So I'm taking my time and trying to do it right. I'm into this book about 8-9000 words, and my pace will pick up soon enough.
I'm also writing another short comic for Planetscape. I was asked to take some basic ideas for the characters and run with it. I'm about half way done with this and it's been a load of fun. It's a nice change of pace from zombie rampages. This story won't show up in the upcoming issue of Planetscape, but the following. Meaning, it'll be a bit before I can post any pics, or anything real updates on it. Also, with as much time as there is between now and then, things may change and this whole comic may not come to fruition. It's probably best I leave it at that - at least, for the time being.
After a week of being sick AND taking care of my wife after her eye surgery (with a huge amount of assistance from my mother in-law) Book 6 is finally done and off for "review" with Amazon. It'll be the same price as books 2 - 5, $3.99. I'll let you know when that is up and ready to go as soon I hear back from Amazon. Additionally, I've done most of the grunt work for the paperback edition, so I'll hopefully have that ready for purchase in the next week or two. I almost always have issues getting them to accept things on the first try, so we'll see how this book fares.
In other news, I may have two stories published in Planetscape (that's one of the anthologies I'm part of). I haven't heard back on the second story, but it may also get published in the next issue. I also lettered a comic for Planetscape, but I can't remember if I mentioned that in the previous blog post or not. Either way it's called "Space Monkey Sprocket". I'll post a pic of it at the end of this. It's a fun story and I'm glad I got to be involved in it.
In stranger news, and I highly doubt this has to do with my writing ability so much as it has to do with them looking for more people, I was recently asked to submit some short stories to Haunted Waters Press for their contest. Winner gets some money and published in their book. As rare as this is to hear, I honestly am more concerned about being published, thereby increasing my exposure, than I am the winnings. Don't get me wrong, I will take the prize money, but it's not the goal.
My editor sent back the final corrections for book 6, I'm going through them right now. Once that is done I'll submit it to Amazon and start working on the paper book side. Hopefully, that won't take too long, but I can't promise anything.
Domitianus is coming along. It's a little slow moving (to me) because I'm trying to write this in a third person, past tense perspective for a person who can barely see more than a few feet in front of him. If you have been following the CoM series at all, then you'll understand how the re-evolving works for zombies. If not, then I suggest you do so! Honestly, I'm writing this book so that anyone can pick it up and read it. It's just that writing a third person view of a character trying to understand his world with little sensory input is a challenge. One that I'm enjoying, but one that doesn't come easily.
On the comic side of things, everything has slowed down to a crawl. There hasn't been a lot of lettering requests lately and I haven't been looking for more. Planetscape and The Fear Collective are coming along and are not within my control, so as soon as I get an update you'll get an update. I'm thinking about taking up book cover creation for a little extra cash. If anyone has an opinion on that bring it on. Bear in mind that I have done all my own covers, as well as a handful of them for other people - so I'm not entirely inept.
I'm saying right now that "Storm Jonas" is only a good name because it's exactly like the Jonas Brothers: it's terrible, it's everywhere, and it makes me not want to leave the house. Beyond that, it's a terrible name for a storm. So, much like the last big snowstorm I had to deal with, I'm calling it Snowzilla. The upside to Snowzilla is that I've been at home with the family and having a merry time of it. The downside is that I've been home with my family and have gotten very little accomplished.
Book 6 was sent back to the editor for the last round. I'm lettering a new comic that will make an appearance in the Planetscape anthology sometime later this year. I believe before July, but I'm not sure. Dom has been a little slow going, but that's having to do with the structure of the piece. Once I get comfortable with the writing style/vocabulary, it'll go a lot faster. I think it'll be a great book to add to the collection, and the first in the horror genre.
Ted the Demon is officially done. At least, the short of it is. I can't give you a timeline on the full comic because there's something big, nay, monumental in the works. If that actually comes to fruition, then Ted as a full comic will be delays slightly, but a whole new avenue will be opened up. At this point I don't want to say any more than that simply because I don't want to cause a ruckus when it's not needed. Anyhoo, I need to get back to writing Dom before the mighty midget wakes up and requires breakfast.
CoM #5 has been approved for paperback! In the next day or so it should start showing up on Amazon. As always, I tried to keep it as cheap is possible, which is to say it still costs more than I'd like it do. But, at least it'll be out soon and those of you not down with the e-book craze will have that new book smell to look forward to, and perhaps the story within its pages.
Book 6 just came from the editor a few minutes ago. I'll go through it tonight, over the next couple of days, and then send it back to her for one more sweep. I'm betting it'll be a few more weeks before that's published. This time around I'll get on the paperback wagon right away.
Another random comic update: I'm apparently lettering comics now (adding word bubbles, text, etc). This one is written by Lou Frontier, and forgive me, I've forgotten who has done the artwork. Either way, this is the first page to "The Grave Digger", this will be published in The Fear Collective along side the comics I've written and showed off on here in the past few weeks.
One of my stories is "Michael", based off of a possible timeline for M down the road. Another is Ted the Demon - just think Indiana Jones, but a demon, and a lot crazier. The last one, which is still needing an artist, is...well I'll show it when the time comes.
By the way, there's no monkey, let alone named Tiger. I tricked you. BWHHAHAHAHAHA
As of yesterday I have started work on the next book, Domitianus. As of right now, that's the working title. It's the character's name, which is roughly based on a Roman Emperor whose reign only lasted a few weeks. If you are unfamiliar with the CoM series as a whole, this might be a cool place to start. It will be a standalone book, it'll most definitely be horror, and it'll introduce the concept of zombie that I use throughout the series. If you're rolling your eyes at this point, straighten them out and understand that this isn't a typical zombie concept. It starts out that way, but it gets far more complicated than that slow moving, must eat brains zombie that you're use to seeing. If you're thinking of something closer to that iZombie show, then you're more on the right track, except that he doesn't gain anyone's memories, he doesn't wake up in control of his zombiness, and I developed this idea long before that show came about.
I also have in my possession one of the short comic stories I wrote for The Fear Collective. The art is done, so now I'm going in and lettering it (adding the words). Once I'm happy with the first page I'll post it. That anthology will be out "soon". Once I have a better date I'll let you know.
Planetscape, the other anthology I wrote for is getting ready to pitch its Kickstarter to the public. I've been told there will be a pdf version, as well as the paperback. I only mention this because I know a number of you are not in the US and shipping is insane. So, you can always purchase a digital copy. If you're wondering how much is insane, I looked into shipping one of my paperbacks to Scotland and it was $30. So, yeah, insane.
Not really, but it did get your attention. Okay...they might be, I don't know, I'm not a doctor. What I do know is that Book #6 in the CoM series is with the editor, so it won't be much longer before that's out and ready for consumption. I also ordered a paperback proof of book #5. Once that shows up and hopefully looks good, that will be available as well.
I'm debating how to go about doing an audio book. On one hand, to do it the way I'd want to (as in, an old time radio show) I'll end up having to do it myself. The issue there is cost. A good mic, along with possibly hiring a couple other people to do voices is not cheap. The alternative is to use Amazon's ACX website, and lose some of the royalties to a professional. I'm entirely fine with making less money. I know I'm not paying off my school loans with this, but I also know I'm going to get one guy, or one girl, reading the book with little to no emotion and there won't be any sense of what character is talking - which is exactly why I don't listen to audio books. So, for now, it's merely a thought in the works.
Today I'm going to share the first page of Ted the Demon (working title). This is one of the projects I've been working on, and for now I know I can show this. This will be published in an Anthology sometime in the next few months (more details as I get them) and then the artist, Kristophor Harris and I are going to continue this into a full sized, color comic. Probably a series as well. As I said, Kris is handling the art; I am writing and lettering. Lettering, for those of you tilting your heads, is adding the actions words, dialogue and narration to the pages. Although, in this case, Kris did the lightning SFX text.
Today until the end of Saturday, Hitori is free to the masses. You can find it here: http://mybook.to/hitori
That is a universal link for Amazon. It'll redirect you to whatever Amazon is in your area. It's plain easier than trying to list all of them for you, and you having to go through that list. Trust me, you aren't going to get viruses or anything off that link. I also provided a button at the top of this blog, if you don't feel like copy/pasting.
In other news, I've been struggling the last couple of days with what book to work on next. I have about 4 solid ideas I want to work on, but none of them are really more interesting that the last. Here they are:
1. Essentially book 7 of the main series, but it would be a standalone. I probably won't even label as book 7, but something more like "the further adventures of M" or something possibly less cheesy.
2. Backstory of Thomas from some early age all the way to the meeting of M (1920s) - also a standalone
3. Backstory for Domitianus - Starting with his very short reign as Roman Emperor and then his life as a mass murdering zombie (if this seems redundant, then you need to go read book 1)
4. A "Choose your own Murder Mystery". If you're old enough to remember the choose your own adventure books, then you know exactly what I'm getting at - except this is an adult version. The idea is that you're a detective on a homicide case, every so often you are given a list of choices: what clues to follow, what people to question, what will you ask them, etc. Those choices dictate which direction the story goes and eventually how it ends. Will you die in the story? Possibly? For sure, there will be a number of outcomes based on what info you've gathered. Maybe you talked to the wrong suspects and the real killer got away, maybe you didn't gather enough evidence so the murderer was set free, who knows.
For the next couple of weeks, I'm going to let you decide my fate. I'm pretty okay with any of them, but I might as well let the people who are going to buy it make the decision what they want to read next. So, let me know what you think. Comment here, or message me, tweet me, Facebook, I don't care. It's all good to me.