Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Terrible, Burning Sun (aka Spokane ComiCon 2011)

Well, we went down (Over? Possibly under?) to Spokane last weekend for the 2011 Spokane ComiCon. A great time was had by all and much in the way of tomfoolery was made. There were also fajitas, but I digress.

The con went along swimmingly. It’s starting to get sizeable and there was always a crowd of some sort. There were also a lot more costumes this year, of which I got some pictures (head on over to the Wayfarer’s Moon Facebook page to check them out).
There was one disturbing incident, though, which I feel I must detail for you all.

At around 3:30, the fire alarm went off. All the attendees quickly shuffled out of the building, leaving all us exhibitors sitting there looking at one another. Those of us with large, more complicated tables wondered how we were supposed to get everything out quickly while others simply swept their wares into bags and boxes.

The following is an actual excerpt from the conversation that ensued between tables:

“Are we supposed to leave?”

“I dunno. What about our stuff?”

“I think we should just leave it.”

“Well, I’m not gonna leave if no one says to.”

This just goes to show that we are not perhaps the brightest bunch on the planet. Presently, the organizers came by and confirmed that yes, we had to leave. I grabbed our cash box, Leigh grabbed the bag of 3 Musketeers and outside we went.

Into the harsh, terrible, burning sun. Seriously, it was hot and sunny outside. We were not prepared for this. We tried to cluster near the shade of the building, but were quickly told that we had to move away. This meant that we HAD to stand in the sun, as the only shade was dozens, if not scores, of yards away. Far, far too far for any of us to walk.

So we stood in the sun for about thirty minutes, as the firefighters checked out the building and presumably snorted into their face masks when they saw the three rooms full of comics. Then after giving us the all clear, they went off and did really manly things like wrestling bears or bludgeoning Vikings with clubs made out of dinosaur bones.

Anyway, we all made it back inside safely and with, perhaps for the first time in many years, our daily allotment of Vitamin D.

NOTE: I think the whole thing was a plot by our mothers to actually get us outside.

So, despite the near death encounter with the sun, the con continued and then we went out and had fajitas.

Many of the usual comics crew were in attendance, including:

Jason Metcalf, artist extraordinaire

Jason Martin of Super Real Graphics

Eric Trautmann, a writer of many comics and all around nice guy

Brandon Jerwa, who I met for the first time and who is also a nice guy and writer

Mark Rahner from Rotten

Cari from Toilet Genie, who once again scored a primo booth spot (not that I’m bitter)

Randy Kintz, another great artist

Chuck, Shawn, & Travis from Creator’s Edge Press

To wrap up: good con, bad sun, excellent fajitas.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I was watching television the other day and a tooth paste commercial came on. During the commercial, they showed little happy bubble creatures swarming through a mouth, cheerfully scrubbing away the plaque. Two things occurred to me as I was watching this.

The first was that this commercial was almost identical to the ones for bathtub cleaning products. Think about it: both feature determined soap-like creatures scrubbing away dirt/grime/blood. Both take place somewhere you really don’t want to think about (bathrooms/your mouth). And both products are a direct result of something you did. Probably something filthy.

Seriously, you could swap the soundtracks for any two of those commercials and unless you were actually paying attention, you probably wouldn’t realize that a switch had been made.

The second thing that caught my attention about the tooth paste commercial was as the happy, bubble men were swarming through the mouth like happy, bubbly locusts, fine print appeared at the bottom of the screen that said ‘Dramatization.’
Now, I’m reasonably certain that most people are smart enough to realize that their toothpaste is not comprised of legions of sentient, paste-centered beings whose existence revolves around removing plaque and other icky things from their teeth. Obviously, the companies have to put those disclaimers to protect themselves and all that.

But wouldn’t it be so much more fun if there really were little plaque fighting men in your toothpaste?

Picture this: your mouth is the Gate of Mordor and all the plaque and bacteria and stuff are really orcs and trolls and other fell creatures. They’re there to not only rot your teeth, but to destroy the very world. Your toothpaste is full of little Gondorian soldiers and Elves and Rohirrim and Dwarves and Wizards and Ents and stuff and they’re attacking, intent on not only defeating the hosts of Mordor, but protecting the very world from the evil that is in your mouth.

Doesn’t that sound cool? You’re not just brushing your teeth, you’re fighting EVIL. The very world hangs in the balance and all that stands in the way of utter defeat is you brushing for the recommended 2 minutes twice a day.

If someone had told me this when I was a kid, it would have saved my parents a ton of money in dental bills.

Now I just need to work flossing into the analogy somehow.


Thursday, May 19, 2011


It’s been yet another busy week here at Single Edge Studios and I have a few announcements.

First, we had our first known ‘shout-out.’ Yes, a very funny web-comic called The Indies included a Wayfarer’s Moon poster in the background in the May 16th update. We’d like to thank The Indies for the shout-out and appreciate being included in the comic. Your check will be arriving shortly (there is no check).

Secondly, a really great fantasy web-comic was brought to my attention: DeadHeaven. This comic well and truly rocks, though it is Not Safe For Work for violence and nudity. Unless, of course, you work at a place called Violence and Nudity, in which case, you’re probably okay.

Lastly, I would like to announce that our trade Wayfarer’s Moon: The Road From Southfield will appear in the June Diamond catalog. Diamond is the largest distributor of comics in North America, which means that any comic store in the US can order our book and stock it on their shelves, which is pretty damn cool.

It also means that any one of you (once the June catalog comes out) can go to your local comics retailer and suggest to them that they order one or more of our trades (preferably in the hundreds).

Simply walk into your local comics’ retailer and say, in a loud, clear voice: “Good book-monger, if you have not noted, a treasure has appeared in the Diamond catalog. A veritable feast of fantasy called Wayfarer’s Moon: The Road From Southfield (catalog #: JUN110991). Were I you, I would hasten to my computing device and procure as many as possible, for certainly, such a wondrous tome would add both luster and prestige to your humble storefront.”

It might help if you’re wearing a top hat though.

Anyhow, this is a big step for us and hopefully, will be the first of many graphic novels to come.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sharks in Sweaters

It so happens that the other day I came across an article about the world’s population of sharks. Real swimmy swimmy sharks, not the other kind, who give you money and then break your legs when you don’t pay. Though, I suppose, swimmy sharks could do that to. I mean, the cash would get rather soggy and they’re more ‘biters’ than ‘beaters,’ so to speak, so the leg breaking would be difficult.

NOTE: Some of you got the ‘biter’ and ‘beater’ reference. Feel free to feel superior. For those who also got the ‘swimmy swimmy’ reference, feel free to don a monocle and add an ‘esquire’ after your name.

But I digress. It seems that the population of the swimmy, swimmy sharks (hereafter referred to as just ‘sharks’) is down by some 30% across the world. Human over-fishing seems to be the culprit and real, honest-to-god experts have theorized that the sudden increase in shark-fishing is due to the movie Jaws, which scared the poop out of everyone about 30-years ago.

For those of you who have not seen the movie, a shark pretty much eats everyone in a small seaside town until Roy Scheider blows it up with an air tank, a feat which was later totally disproven on an episode of Mythbusters.

Sharks became the new symbol of fear and we humans have done what we do best when confronted with something scary: we kill the crap out of it. Oh, I’m not bagging on humanity here. Killing stuff that scares you is a very important survival trait, ‘cause there’s generally a good reason to be scared of it. The cavemen that tried to pet the pretty cobra didn’t survive, whereas the cavemen who screamed and killed the cobra with a rock did.

Anyway, the problem here is that sharks eat lots of other, equally scary things and now that the shark population is so low, the other critters are multiplying. The Humbolt Squid, in particular, used to be found in one area off of Mexico. Now they’re hanging out in malls in Minnesota and trying to pick up girls.

So basically, if we want to keep things in balance, we ought to do something to help out the sharks. We could simply stop killing so many, which would work. Or, we could go totally overboard and actually start adopting them. It would be simple: you agree to raise a shark and when it’s old enough, you release it into the wild (aka: college). Not only will this help increase shark populations, but maybe, just maybe, sharks and humans would form a bond of love and friendship. Sharks would stop eating people. People would stop hunting sharks. A whole new industry of shark products would arise, including shark chow, shark leashes, and woolen shark sweaters for when they got cold.

Plus, if aliens ever messed with us, we could totally sick our sharks on them. Which would rock.

I think I’ll name my shark ‘Mr. Bitey.’


Friday, May 13, 2011

The Day After the 12th

Happy Friday the 13th everyone!

First off, apolopgies. Blogger has been acting weird lately and I was unable to post the last two nights. I do have a truly wonderful blog all ready to go (it's about sharks) which I will be posting next week.

As noted, today is Friday the 13th and I plan to spend it in complete and utter terror. No, not because I'm particularly superstitious, but because I had a triple meat burrito with jalapenos, bacon, and refried beans last night and at some point today, it's going to come out again. And when it does, god help us all.

In other news, my nephew James is having his fifth birthday this weekend and we're all going to a bouncy castle to celebrate. I've never actually been to a bouncy castle and though I've been assured that it's safe for adults, I'm not entirely sure it's safe for all the adults at the same time. The men in my group of friends tend to run, how shall we say, 'large' and we're all going to pile in first chance we get. So, if you hear about a 'boucy castle disaster,' you'll know what happened.

Last piece of news: Leigh and I will be at the Spokane Comicon next weekend, Saturday the 21st. The Spokane con is starting to get to a good size, so I urge all of you to come by if you have the time. People who are well-known in the comics industry will be there. Us too.

Anyway, have a safe and fun weekend and come back next week for more pages and blogs.


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Little Note

When I got home yesterday, I found a note from the apartment complex on my door. I considered setting it on fire, just in case, but then thought better of the idea. So, in order to avoid cooties, I went inside and donned my hazmat suit, before returning to read the letter.

It was, unsurprisingly, a form letter. My apartment has many, many form letters. I have gotten form letters to announce fire alarm inspections, advise on proper trash sorting, reminders to not park vehicles in the breezeways, and various other common topics. I would not be particularly surprised if there were also form letters on walking your zombie, post-apocalyptic etiquette, and the proper times to use a flamethrower indoors.

I read the note and promptly passed out. This was not due to the contents of the note, but the fact that I’d forgotten to hook up the oxygen tank on my hazmat suit. Luckily, I tore a hole in the suit when I fell, otherwise I’d be really smelly right about now.

NOTE: Smellier.

According to the form letter, I had ‘inappropriate articles stored on my patio.’ This seemed odd, so I double checked. I don’t actually have anything on my patio, aside from a couple rocks, a clump of dirt, and the head from a Barbie doll, which was nice because now I have a full set.

The note did list a few things, like patio furniture, that were acceptable to store on the patio. Though, in all seriousness, the fact that it’s called ‘patio furniture’ seems like a giveaway. Firewood is apparently also okay. I suppose patio furniture built out of firewood would also be allowed, but the letter didn’t specify.

So, obviously, whomever looked at my patio was either mistaken about which patio was which or really, really, really hates Barbie heads.

Other than removing the Barbie head, I haven’t altered anything on my patio, so I’m eager to see if I get another form letter. If not, I might just go ahead and start putting things on my patio, because honestly, the form letters make me feel special, much like my collection of 27 Barbie heads.

I wonder if a large inflatable dinosaur eating a caveman would do it?


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Not a Podiatrist

Another marvelous week has ended here at Single Edge Studios. Panels were drawn. Words were written. I punched a ninja so hard, he exploded, leaving only his tabi shoes behind.

Actually, no, that last bit didn't happen. I have a very active imagination and occasionally it gets the better of me, which is why I sometimes write blogs about the mold people who live in my bathroom.

It can be a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, my mother thinks I'm a successful podiatrist who lives in Helsinki. And that I'm married to Kate Beckinsale's twin sister, Maggie.

On the other hand, I'm not.

One thing that did actually happen is that Leigh's wife Laura sent the following around:

I found it hysterical and I hope you do as well. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go do a foot transplant.

Or not.

Have a great weekend.


Wednesday, May 4, 2011


I went bowling last weekend. This is the first time I’ve bowled in about six years, so I was pretty sure I was going to suck at it.

I was right.

I had a strategy going in: I was going to throw the ball really, really hard down the center of the lane and just take out the pins with sheer force.

And yes, I can hear the bowlers rolling their eyes (pun intentional).

Oddly enough, my strategy of throwing the ball really, really hard didn’t pay off. Oh, the pins went flying when I hit them, but that was maybe a fifty/fifty chance. I was kind of hoping that if I hit a couple pins hard enough, they’d ricochet around more and hit more pins and thus, increase my score.

Ideally, I’d hit the pins so hard, they’d not only knock over my pins, but the concussion would knock pins in the adjacent lanes down as well. This would rock, though I have no idea how you’d score that.

NOTE: The best thing would be to throw the ball so hard the sonic boom would just knock over every pin in the building. Granted, this might actually be dangerous, but it would be cool.

Actually, I have no idea how you score in bowling anyway. There’s some sort of multiplier thing going on with strikes and spares that seems excessively complicated. If you’ve got ten frames and ten pins, the top score should be 100 and you just count up the pins you knock over. That would eliminate all that pesky math and make life easier.

And yes, I’m sure I could wiki ‘bowling’ and figure out how the scoring works. I’m just lazy (and bad at math).

Anyway, we managed to get one game in and I came in third. Leigh won handily with a couple back to back strikes, which surprised everyone, Leigh included.

Next time, I’ll go with my secondary strategy: throw the balls softer, but then use the Force to just knock the pins over regardless of where the ball went. And then Force Choke anyone that protested.

I’ll need to work on the whole ‘Force’ thing though.