Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Stormseeker's 'Little Bang'!

     Everyone has to start somewhere.
     For me that somewhere is going to start locally, at local cons with my first public art project, a home brew science fiction / fantasy comic book venture called 'Stormseeker'. And though I doubt in the beginning anyone will notice its coming and goings (such is the way of independent publishing), my hope is that a few issues down the road, as people see I’m serious about the project and the first story arc is wrapped up into a nice little trade paperback, that fans of my work will be found. It’ll start at my local cons, where I’ll test the waters, and hopefully ripple things out from there over the next year or so.
     Though I’ve related the Stormseeker Universe development story time and again, I'll summarize it here quick for those who’ve never heard it;
     The ‘Stormseeker Universe’, the backdrop for my upcoming comic book series, has been in development for over two decades, starting as an original single weekend ‘role playing’ campaign scribbled onto the back of a character sheet and ending as a fully fledged Science fiction / Fantasy universe on the other end, but only after countless thousands of hours of thought, work and twenty years of research, development and endless tweaking. And I can say with complete seriousness and honesty that the ‘Stormseeker Universe’ is without question my ‘Magnum OpusAKA my greatest work. And probably will be the only project of this scale I will ever attempt in my lifetime.
     Over those years, I’ve developed, outlined and written hundreds of short stories, adventures and historical timelines that flesh out the inner mythology of the ‘universe’ and to give it texture. And have become so intimately connected with this ‘private’ work that in a strange kind of way, I still really don’t want to share it, but rather keep it locked away for my own personal reflection and pleasure. But reaching middle age, I’ve realized that if there is ever going to be a chance of sharing my work with the world, I have to get working on sharing it now, before I get too old to promote it or too distant from the material that it loses it creative meaning.
     The upcoming publication of my ONGOING comic book series ‘Stormseeker’ will be the first public appearance of ‘The Stormseeker Universe’. Though being published as a comic book series is a recent creative notion, inspired in part by my lifelong interest in the medium of comic books, specifically independent comic books, and the recent trend towards affordable but high quality print on demand.
     Personally, I don’t think ‘comic books’ are the greatest and most universal medium to work in, being that most of the consumer demand is in specialty shops and independent grass roots efforts in the industry are generally ignored by the mainstream, but it is a very effective medium to introduce my work visually and on a small budget. Down the road,  a trade paperback collection of my work might find a place in distribution, but I don’t see much financial success in the ‘independent floppy comic’ version of the work. But it’s more important for me, at this moment at least, to get the work ‘out the door’ as a first step. I’m willing to work at a financial loss to get the work out in the short term for the long term exposure and to meet my personal goals with the overall work, which puts me above most ‘independent’ publishers who seem to be unwilling to see the bigger picture and completely unwilling to make sacrifice for the greater good of exposure.
     Thankfully as a graphic designer by trade, I have an insider’s knowledge of printing, advertising, graphic design software and good understanding of the publishing industry and its technicalities, so it’s also something I can do all on my own without needing external help. Every aspect of my comic book, at least for the first few issues, will be by my own hand. This eliminates initial overhead, reduces overall investment and saves on the overall costs of preproduction.
     Hopefully in July, I’ll have the first copies in hand of Issue #1, a Full Color 52 Page introduction of the ‘Stormseeker Universe’, titled appropriately 'Stormseeker'. That will be followed by a more action packed and higher art quality Issue #2, that’s already in fast development.

To be continued…

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