Sunday, August 31, 2003

How to Break into Graphic Smash

As you might have heard, I'm still seeking entries for Graphic Smash until September 8. I'm looking for well-developed concepts and a couple of samples. But even if you don't have those, you've still got a shot.

Strips seeking colorists.

Two strips are in need of colorists-- the aforementioned Clan of the Cats spin-off, Mythos & Magick, and the anthro superhero series featuring a character who gives Spider-Man a run for his money in the teen angst department... Ram.

If you have an interest in coloring either or both of these strips, e-mail me. This is a non-paying position, but it's an opportunity to make contacts with a lot of experience and hefty audiences.

Writers seeking artists.

There are several good scripts that have come my way, but the artists initially contacted proved noncommittal. If you're an artist who'd seriously like to take on someone else's strip idea, you can download scripts for perusal here and here and here.

Send me samples by September 8. Illustrating a page or two of these scripts is no guarantee you'll get in-- but it can give you a leg up. Writer-artist teams split strip revenues 50-50 unless both agree otherwise.

Saturday, August 30, 2003

Is The Tide Turning on Hackers?

The author of the Blaster virus has cheesed off people from all walks of life and gotten more ridicule than the Star Wars kid.

Once upon a time, haxxors were the Robin Hoods of the Web. But today, it seems like we're perceiving them as a danger to private as well as corporate interests. Are we seeing the extinction of a species of hero?

Friday, August 29, 2003


I'll be attending the Small Press Expo in Bethesda, Maryland next week, fielding questions about Fans, Graphic Smash and various other projects. Come by and say hi! There's a lot to see and do.

The Rest of the Clan

Jamie Robertson, he of the Spot strip Clan of the Cats, has come up with a new strip for Graphic Smash.

Mythos and Magick is an anthology series exploring other characters and regions of the Clan of the Cats universe. The first story, entitled "CURSE: The Tale of Mór Sine and Aingeal", explores the origins of the Chattan Curse... the curse that may yet doom Chelsea Chattan today. Art's by the redoubtable Erin Zerbe! Don't miss it!

Rumys Rumys Everywhere.

Various artistic artist interpretations here.

Thursday, August 28, 2003

He Lives!

Actual footage from the San Diego Comic-Con.

It really is a stunning likeness.
However, Tom the Fanboy's nametag read "Tommespin," just to prevent confusion.

Tom with T Campbell, negotiating a role for his
namesake in the FANS story now airing.

Mad Science Has Been Set Back 20 Years.

From The Onion.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Is There Death After Death?

Mnemesis. Coming soon to Graphic Smash.

It's Like the Worst Baby Picture Ever.

That's how "The Star Wars Kid," Ghyslain X, feels about his fame on the Internet, according to MSNBC, who made him their top story last night.

In case you've missed this, click the link above to bring you up to speed.

I remember what a trying time the fifteenth year of life can be, but as MSNBC pointed out repeatedly, the reason the video is popular in fan circles is our identification with its star. We've all done things in private that we'd rather not see repeated in public. Ghyslain doesn't seem able to distinguish between those who are laughing at him and those who are laughing with him, and that makes us all the poorer.

They Get Married?


The Matrix Revolutions star Keanu Reeves (Neo) told the Australian Herald Sun newspaper that the upcoming third movie will feature "a battle between Zion and the machines, and the relationship between Agent Smith [Hugo Weaving] and Neo is resolved."

I always hoped those crazy kids would make it work.

Tuesday, August 26, 2003


I did hint, recently, that Graveyard Greg and Webtroll and I were going to be making some music together shortly. Well, that time is coming on September 15.

This comin' September, get ready for the superhero series Guardians on-- you guessed it-- Graphic Smash.

Guardians picks up where The Year of Hell: April leaves off. The Guardians are like the Gaming Guardians would be if almost everything in their lives had gone right. They have never failed to protect their city, their people and their world. That world is a kind of Eden, built by a self-appointed god. But now "God" is gone-- and the serpents are slithering out from the underbrush.

Art by the astonishing Webtroll, and scripts by Graveyard Greg and yours truly. Be there. It'll be good!

Monday, August 25, 2003

Don't Let This "Gun" Go Off.

Barb Lien-Cooper and Ryan Howe are teaming to bring you, and me, Gun Street Girl-- an urban fantasy of a has-been occult investigator named Eddie Caution, and the young woman he hires as his "gun," or enforcer. He's the brains, she's the muscle. He casts the spells, she fights the monsters. But their real enemy is the world in which they live... a world where magic is real, but so are moral compromises that magic can't solve.

Coming in three weeks to Graphic Smash for the first time anywhere ever ever.

Saw the Teen Titans cartoon for the first time last Saturday, and I'm kinda torn. On the one hand, it's pretty entertaining on its own terms... mixing the sleek geometry of Bruce Timm's usual work with the conventions of comical anime. On the other, I have nothing but sympathy for Marv Wolfman and George Perez, who are watching their 1980s comic books undergo radical changes in style and tone. Has anyone else seen it? What do you think?

Sunday, August 24, 2003

What Are "Week-Ends?"

For the next three weeks, FANS is a seven-day-a-week strip. I could tell you why, but I know the question you're all REALLY asking yourselves is...

"T, how does a small wombat get onto Graphic Smash, an action-adventure website full of renegade spies and other ass-kickers?"

Well, I'll just let Ursula Vernon's Digger speak for herself:

"We swing pickaxes for twelve hours a DAY. We're like BICEPS WITH FEET."

But despite Digger's j00-0wnz0ring potential, she's got big problems... she has no way back to her warren, and every move she makes seems to take her further into the territory of fanged predators and strange gods.

For a sneak preview, click here.

Saturday, August 23, 2003

Star Wars Drinking Isn't Always a Game.

Ewan McGregor admits the new Star Wars movies drove him to the bottle.

Okay, he didn't quite say THAT. But he did say, after Phantom Menace, that actually making the movies was "the epitome of tedium" and "a frowning exercise." And come to think of it, Alec Guiness really didn't like making them either...

'Tis The Season.

Shortly after my friend Liz gets parenthood into his journal (see archives), award-winning autobiographer James Kochalka does the same. And I have two other friends who are due in September. Hmm... counting nine months back... I guess it's true what they say: that first cold snap really does cause a baby boom...

Thursday, August 21, 2003


It's kinda like Invasion of the Body Snatchers, only without the upbeat parts.

Thing is, since the "humans" are just as programmed as the "zombies," are we really watching the destruction of free will?

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Skiffy Babies.

At present, I have less than nothing to offer about the UN bombing, except prayers, and I don't blog those. Instead of death, let's talk life.

Matt and Liz Brooks, two of my fellow alumni of the William and Mary Science Fiction Club, recently announed the birth of their lucky daughter, Penelope (Penny for short).

She's beautiful, guys. Yes, Matt. Even her nose.

Liz has done a crackerjack job reporting a lot of things they don't necessarily tell you about deliveries and the first week of life. If you know (or are) someone who's having kids, you may want to check this out.

Matt and Liz are two of the best people I know. I wish more parents in the world were like them.

Score one for the good guys.

Our First Controversy!

Less than two weeks after I started this blog, we've already dug up a webcomic that inspires real political passions. See this thread for some responses to the (now-online) comics version of Road to Serfdom.

The original authorial intent is dubious-- it was the creation of the 1940s General Motors, which history does not praise for its civic responsibility. It's likely that GM wanted to make sure that neither bureaucracy nor tyranny interfered with a good old-fashioned oligopoly. But have they stumbled onto some truth for our times, in spite of themselves? U-Decide.

Side note: is a comic a webcomic if it is CREATED for the Web, or only if it's POSTED to the Web? Because if it's the former, then the first five months of FANS are not technically webcomics...

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

The Road to Freedom

Much as I hope we are not walking down a "Road to Serfdom," the only way to stay off it is to be informed of threats to freedom, inside and outside our borders. Webcomics are doing their part.

Monday, August 18, 2003

How Felicitous.

Just as I was announcing GRAPHIC SMASH, John Troutman, cartoonist on Basil Flint, was toying with a new series featuring Basil's kid sister, Felicity! Soon after, he was sending me a proposal which secured him an early spot on the lineup.

"Join the fun," says Troutman, "as secret agent Felicity Flint finds herself unemployed after killing a couple guys without a license to kill! To what lengths will she go to earn her job back? Well, if I told you that, I wouldn't need to draw the comic."

Felicity comes to the SMASH the week of September 15.

Why I Don't Draw FANS.

For years, or at least months, to come, people will look back fondly on Comic-Con 2003. Such bacchanalia. Such glory.

It must have gone to my head, being behind the Keenspot table, because I actually ended up drawing a few sketches.

Kevin Brown, he of the recent naughty FANSART, also ran a contest involving Frank Cormier and his quest to get the famed artists of Keenspot to draw his wife (the redoubtable Meaghan Quinn) in a sexy pose.

For my contribution to the "Sexy Megs Pics," click here. And for the full list of Kevin's many talented contributors, click here.

Sunday, August 17, 2003

Endings, Beginnings...

"Departures" kicks off today, featuring a couple of characters you probably NEVER expected to see again. (Neither of them are in today's image.) It's also a "jam session" between THREE FANS substitute artists, including a new face-- DIRK TIEDE, who's made his mark on the edgy cop fantasy Paradigm Shift. I have every confidence in all three of these guys.

And where's Jason? Mmm... might have something to do with that bug in our website last weekend...

ALSO, Rip & Teri is making its final move this September... to Graphic Smash. The move comes just a week after GS's September 15 launch. That'll give "The Art of Seduction" time to conclude. That's all I'll tell you about the next four weeks of Rip and Teri... except that there should be a few surprises. (Strip updates Monday morning, at 1AM EST.)

Friday, August 15, 2003

In Other News, Graveyard Greg and Webtroll Hand World Its Ass

These guys have honed their craft a great deal in the last year, and Keenspot has taken notice. No announcement on their site or on Keenspot's home site as I write this, but Comixpedia has confirmed that Gaming Guardians is one of the four latest strips to be 'spotted.

Not only THAT, but one or both of these gentlemen might be doing something with yours truly shortly. No, not another crossover. Stay tuned.

Hitler vs. Stalin! Issue #50 Blowout!

From the forums, the Final Battle! (Thanks to Ray Radlein.)

Thursday, August 14, 2003

Time Travel's Early Adopters?

Saw a GAMES Magazine cover today with photos from 24 time-travel movies. What struck me was that only three were from films before 1980 (A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, Planet of the Apes and The Time Machine). Did the collage artist think GAMES readers won't recognize older films... or was it only in the 1980s that time-travel movies really caught on?

If so, was it because we were finally reaching a point where films from our parents' generation looked pretty much like ours (that is to say, in color and with sound)? If a 1961 film looks like a 1981 one, does it become easier to imagine characters from a 1981 film in a 1961 setting? Your thoughts?

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Pull Quote

Somebody asked permission to use Rumy's quote here in a new book of quotations. I said sure. But I hope nobody thinks she stole the quote from the book if she actually publishes World-Building in seven years.

Where Mad Scientists Play

Ever wonder where Shaenon Garrity gets all her crazy ideas?

See, there's this museum...

Comics Are Just For Kids.

According to the Texas courts, who feel Jesus Castillo is not within his rights to sell adult comics to adults.

So when they haul Pete Abrams away in leg irons for showing naked women, don't say we didn't warn you.

I'm scared, guys. Yeah, it's a minor comic being picked on, in a state not known for its judicial probity, but this is how bad things start. Or, rather, how bad things continue, because this isn't the first case like this... some of you may remember Mike Diana. If you don't, or want more info, see this thread.

Communications Breakthrough

Ahem. Testing. 1, 2, 3. This thing ON? Can you hear me now?


If you're frighteningly observant, you may have noticed the date above this little missive, or the logo below it. If so, you may have deduced that FANS is now blogging with the best of them. Which means that every stray speculation, note, or thought from yours truly will now be recorded for posterity.

That overinflating sound you hear is just my ego.

Special thanks to Ian for helping us set this up.