Balls in the air...
So, what have I been doing since the pandemic began? Other than the extra time for family, the day job, and binging books/TV, I mean. Lots, surprisingly.
You saw in my last newsletter one of those projects…a short story appearing in the next volume, the fourth, of the RAID studio anthology. Need a refresher, just check last month’s newsletter here or check out more details (like pre-ordering if you missed the Kickstarter campaign) at my website here.
Prior to that anthology, since 2020, I contributed to three other anthology releases: Volume 2 of my what-if series Flip, for Markosia; David Lloyd’s digital magazine Aces Weekly, Volumes 50 & 51; and, Through The Labyrinths Of The Mind, for Cloudscape Comics.
I returned to Aces Weekly to write a story about the pandemic, called The New Normal, naturally. I call the story an essay fantasy, as it starts as a piece commenting on how the world changed in March 2020. But then it dovetails into fantasy as we look at the pandemic through a kid’s eyes and how he sees superheroes tackling the pandemic problem. Steven Legge does an awesome job on this short story. I love how he softly switches art styles as we enter the boy’s full colour bombastic dream.
I then connected with Cloudscape Comics to contribute to their mental health anthology, Through The Labyrinths Of The Mind. I wrote a story about a family dealing with dementia to reflect my own family’s experience dealing with my father’s dementia. My father passed from the disease in 2019 so this story and one of the stories in Flip were my way to both honour him and deal with my feelings around his death and this horrible disease.
So, that brings us to the present. What’s coming next, then? These are all coming in 2022 or 2023…
My first audio drama, a relationship dramedy between a college student and her choice of…soft drinks. Taste Test…when it comes out, I’ll do a proper write-up behind the long history behind this story. I can’t wait to hear it!
A superhero series for Lev Gleason’s Comic House. Check out Equilibrium, their Free Comic Book Day book out in early May for hints behind what I’m writing. Let’s just say that if you’re a fan of my Legion stories, you’ll love this. More to come.
A sci-fi fantasy noir for Markosia. Asteroid Adrift will be my first published collaboration with a co-writer. An Italian writer, no less. Marcello Bondi has written for Diabolik, Tex, and Italian Disney Comics, while we have worked together previously on the first volume of Flip. I also edit and translate some of his works for the English market for Markosia, Antarctic Press, and others. (Those are also coming out later this year and next.) This story taps into our love for Lost (Marcello) and The Prisoner (me…yeah, I’m old). Not nearly as old, but who remembers Nowhere Man? Any of these up your alley, then you’re in for a treat.
A horror fantasy for Source Point Press. Take a hint of Sandman…and mash it up with Fantasy Island, and you get Muse’s Motel. Dominic Bercier and I (along with Hugh Rookwood and Steven Legge) construct a creator’s Twilight Zone hopefully never seen before!
A middle grade superhero fantasy for Kids Can Press. An adventure near and dear to my heart, I can’t wait for the release of ThunderBoom. This should be announced by KCP real soon, and if you haven’t seen the preview art I’ve been sharing on social media from Claudia Davila, don’t worry, I’ll add something new here and more to come when it’s announced.
A colour edition of my Eisner-nominated first series, Growing Up Enchanted, with Alex Serra. So happy to see this in colour after so long as a black and white book. Book 1 is completely coloured so shouldn’t be too long now…in time for our 20 year anniversary! 25 if you count the short story versions that were published in Mythography. Zoom…time flies! Thanks to colourists Jason Millet, Steven Legge and Patrik Mock.
More Dominion Jack! Hugh Rookwood and I are still looking for a publisher home for Jack’s new adventures (and compiling his older digital adventures as well) and we have a first chapter already completed that was co-written by another Ottawa author - Mark Shainblum. And it’s a team-up story so three guesses on who Dominion Jack and Mashup will be teaming with?
Multiple pitches in with my agent for the middle grade and young adult book market, as well as pitches for other markets to comic publishers like Aftershock.
So, is that lots? I think so. I’ve shown a few things but don’t worry, in future newsletters, I’ll go more in depth on each upcoming project. And past ones too. Cool? I hope so. Just trying to keep all those balls up in the air…anyone know a good juggler?