Tag Archives: Comics

Top Cow Talent Hunt loser.

I did not win the Top Cow Talent Hunt this year. I submitted three 22 pagers using the assigned Top Cow characters and I had a blast writing all of them. I learned so much from the experience, it was great. Building a script from top to bottom in scrivener three times was quite amazing in and of itself. And of course, writing a Comic Book script is always good practice.

Then, there is the fact that I am so focused on my current project(s) that the ball just keeps on rolling no matter what.

Here is the very nice email all Hunts participants received from Top Cow President, Matt Hawkins:

Emails were sent out before this, so if you received this without a previous email from me I’m sorry to say you didn’t win this year. Total count was 587 entries so it was more than I originally thought (once I counted it all out).  So less than 1.5% of entrants won this year. 

The writing category was especially hard for me this year (and why it took so long) because there were about 40 of you that delivered professional quality writing and could easily be writing for a major publisher today.  I added one writer runner up simply because I could not make up my mind.

Thank you so much for participating. I hope that you have found the exercise educational at a minimum. As a reminder, there is no formal feedback offered via email. If you want to track down one of us at a comic convention and chat us up we’re happy to do that.

As I said in the previous email, I’m reserving at least a spot in each category for people who previously entered as winners for next year.  There are two people who won this year that had entered previously, one has entered every time. So entering again does have its merits!
The formal announcement of winners will be on comicbookresources.com sometime next week I don’t know the exact day but it will include some of the art from the “art” side that you can check out.  To read what the writers submitted you can read those as they come out next year.
One thing I’m going to do for next year as well is make some exclusive “product” that will only be available to participants. Any other feedback to us about the contest is always appreciated.
Isaac Goodhart, one of the first year art winners, is now the regular penciller on Postal so the contest does have some legs!  Tini Howard and Ashley Robinson are both writing one shot Top Cow books for Poseidon IX and Athena IX in August and September.
We don’t publish a LOT of books, but we are actively trying to get new blood into the industry and thanks again SO MUCH for participating.


Matt Hawkins
President/COO, Top Cow Productions, Inc.
MS Physicist, Self Loathing Narcissist, Inc.
That was nice of Mister Hawkins to take the time to do that.
See you next week,

Liefeld at Goodwill.

When I go to Goodwill, I often look around for Comic Books. I am no collector but sometimes you can find some real weird stuff, especially stuff I have never heard of. Such is the case with Vogue.


From her ComicVine page:

Nikola Voganova was forced to leave a pampered life in Russia at the age of 13 when she witnessed her father being killed by Alexander Stroika of the KGB. She was already at that time a world-class gymnast. At age 18 she was accepted into the Bloodpool program and shortly before her twentieth birthday she became a member of Youngblood.

Some time after having established herself in Youngblood, Vogue started an international cosmetics corporation, Vogue Cosmetics, using her fame to spearhead the launch.

Vogue eventually returned to Russia where she met her mother and brother, who had become a part of the Redblood program, and got her revenge on Alexander Stroika.

After the death of Riptide and the discontinuation of Youngblood, Vogue returned home to Russia

Vogue Cosmetics? Sure, I’d buy that. Oh, and she’s also a famous supermodel.

But truly, she had me at the cover baring the name “Rob Liefeld”. Though the famed artist and co-founder of image gets a lot of criticism for his unrealistic and over-the-top-kind-of deformed artwork, I am still fond of him. I grew up in the nineties and his work on Marvel’s X-Force, and later Youngblood, is part of my tweenage years. So, of course, I had to pick it up. Too bad the inside is a different artist. it is still very Liefeld-ish though and the dialogue is also very much on the nose. It’s kinda funny.

So yeah, there, I said it. I DO enjoy Rob Liefeld’s artwork and if I see more of his books in a bargain bin, I might, just MIGHT buy them, for cheap, at Goodwill… maybe.

Here are a couple pics for you to enjoy,




Je m’Elance.

Get it? It’s a bilingual pun.

In French, “s’elancer” means to “make haste” and it’s funny because I am currently looking for an artist on Elance.com hence the post title:”Je m’elance”.


It’s like that joke the UPS guy told me the other day:

Two cats are swimming across the English Channel. The first is British and is named “One, Two, Three”. The second is French and is named “Un, Deux, Trois”. Which one makes it across???


Answer is: The British cat makes it because “Un, Deux, Trois” Quatre, Cinq.

oh wait, it doesn’t work when you write it… the funny part is that when you say it out loud, it sounds like this:  “Un, Deux, Trois” Cat Sank.


So yeah, Elance.

So far, it has been a great experience. I posted a job offer and got tons of proposals from artists in return. If you’ve been following, you know I have had the hardest time finding an artist and Elance has been nothing short of a godsend. You can see their portfolio, work experience, and ratings from past clients. That is super helpful. You also send messages and files to the freelancers all on the site so that there is a record of everything were a dispute to arise. I quite like that.

So far so good.

Of course, I’ll tell you guys how it all turns out when I select a candidate and go through the whole process.



Tangled in the web

I am real frustrated today.

In my efforts to find an artist to pencil and ink an 8 pages story I’ve written, I posted a thread on Digitalwebbing.com under PAID jobs. But it did not post. The next day I contacted the webmaster but no answer. I tried posting again yesterday and it still did not work. Contacted the webmaster again and waiting for an answer.

This morning I decided to post the job on Elance.com. I got a couple answers right away but then the job was taken down (RAAGH!). I contacted them to figure out what the problem is and I am waiting for an answer. I am SOO waiting. WTF Internet?!?!

Do you have any similar experiences? Any advice?

While I wait, here is the job post,



-Seeking Artist for 8 pages Fantasy/ Action Comedy ($60 per page, negotiable)

Hello Everyone,

My name is Nico. I am a Comic Book writer. I am currently looking for an artist to draw an 8-pages story.

I am looking for someone to produce both pencils and inks, $60 per page (negotiable depending on the quality of the art) and a cover.  I will be lettering the final artwork. You will send invoices and get payment through Paypal. You will receive payment for one page as a deposit upon signing the contract and the rest of the money once you turn in the final files to me as 300dpi TIF files. If you have a different payment set up in mind, I am flexible. There is no specific deadline but I would like the work to be completed no later than August 1st. I will retain ownership of the property but you can do with the final artwork as you please, of course.

The ideal candidate will have experience creating sequential artwork.  I am looking for an artist with integrity, strong work ethic, and with whom I can have an honest back and forth about the work.

The 8-pages story is an Action/ Fantasy Comedy about KING ARTHUR reincarnated as an amnesiac hobo (in the spirit of The Dude from the Big Lebowski) who is forced to retrieve Excalibur from the stone by his mortal enemy and Rich CEO MORDRED. In the end, Magical Hitman MERLIN saves him and takes him back to Avalon.  It’s over-the-top comedic madness.

A bit about me. You can see some of my work at http://activecomics.com/ I got a couple stories published by 8th Wonder Press but I am not yet able to share them on my site since it has to be one year since the book publication for me to be able to do so.

If interested, please send me an email with links to your work and page rate to nizambard@yahoo.fr

Don’t hesitate to contact me with questions and to request a copy of the script.

Thank you for reading,

The Call of the Demon- Oni Press

Starting this may, Oni Press (publisher of Scott Pilgrim and other fantastic funnies) is opening its own submission process for artists, cartoonists, and writers. That’s right, even if you are a writer without an artist attached, you can still submit your pitch to Oni Press.


Their submission guidelines are very specific and actually very helpful in sharpening your ideas. It goes like this:



– Pitches should be:

– A logline – [what’s the idea/concept]

(I did not know what a logline was before this and had to look it up. Here is some advice. Go ahead and try to write a logline for your project, it can be quite difficult to distill your concept/ Idea to just a few words.)

– A one-page synopsis / overview – A short summary that contextualizes who your project is for and how it fits into the marketplace

(I never even considered that. Who is my project for? You know, besides myself. And how does it fit in the marketplace? Heavy questions.)

– A 3-5 page outline – give us the full beginning, middle and end of your story so we can see your execution.

– A sample comic script containing at least two scenes, consisting of at least eight pages and no more than twenty pages. This should be a comic book script, NOT a screenplay.

(YES! They are actually asking for script samples! That is AWESOME! They want to see that you can write a Comic Book Script, that you understand the medium).

Needless to say, I am hard at work on my submission but not just that. The guidelines they provide can truly be helpful for any project and help you think of your writing from different perspective, be it in the current marketplace or as a couple sentences logline.


From 8 to 15 in one week.

A couple weeks ago, I put a post on Zwol.org seeking  a comic book artist for an 8 pages Comic Book story. I received many responses back and after much debate with myself I settled for who I believed to be the best artist for the job (and the price). I sent the artist my script and the following week he sent me a 15 pages version of my story where he added entire new sequences and dialogue. He had rewrote my script as a 15 pages story. I was flabbergasted,confused, and a bit hurt. I did not know how to react.

I might not be an Official Professional Comic Book Writer but I do have a couple stories published and I have worked with other artists. I enjoy collaboration tremendously and I am always looking forward to an artist’s opinion of my scripts. I take their feedback to heart and make the necessary changes. I love the back and forth and arguing about the best way of telling the story. I love the dialogue.

But this was no dialogue. This was not a collaboration and I knew it was something the artist and I could not get over and continue working together. I explained to him that I would have rather he gives me notes and let me handle the writing than do it for me. After all, how would he feel if I was to redraw his artwork without consulting him?

I did end our “collaboration” but still felt like maybe I was somehow in the wrong. Was I being too protective of my work? Too arrogant? Was he right?


First of all, I was not going to pay for a 15 pages story. There is no way. Second, he should have communicated with me before retouching the script and send me his notes. He did not communicate and that’s the biggest issue. I cannot work with someone who is going to do things their own way and not include me in the process. Comic Book making is always a collaboration (unless you do it all yourself and Kudos if you do).

Still in doubt, I turned to my peers for comfort and I cannot thank them enough. I will leave you with their opinions below.






Library Pile 03/29/13

Not much news this week. I am rewriting my 8-pager about King Arthur so that it is real tight once I have an artist. I am currently trying to find someone local but I may end up working with someone I find on a forum or Deviant Art. I don’t really know what will happen. It is both exciting and scary. I am a bit apprehensive because of the not-so-great experiences I had in the past with people not returning emails and disappearing AFTER I wrote a story (or three) specifically for them. I just don’t want anything like that to happen again.

Until I get more news on that front, I wish to share my Library pile with you guys because, well, it’s been a while.

Here it is:


I think it will take me a wee bit to work my way through that one.

And NO, I am not a Scientologist.

Onto next time,


Through the desert and back for more.

After completing both submissions last week, it’s hard not to feel a little empty, a little depressed. After all, I pretty much worked on my Top Cow submission for 5 months straight on a daily basis. That has to leave a mark, an empty space, a hole to be filled… but with what?

Our 8th Wonder Press project was only 2 pages so, well, it did not take as much time…

Thankfully. I have an ongoing go-to writing project that I was working on before the Talent Hunt. It is my go-to writing Scrivener project, a world I know I can go back to anytime and have fun writing and discovering as I move forward into my first pass at it.

Still, I have to figure out what’s next. What project can I add to my writing portfolio? Well, here it is.

I have a pretty cool 8 pages story that I am currently reworking and I need an artist to draw it. Once completed, I will put it in the hands of the editors at the September Rose City Comic Con so that they remember me. I make it a yearly habit so that they get used to seeing my (handsome) face.

All I need now is an artist. If you are interested or know someone interested in working on a Comic Book involving King Arthur reincarnated as a hobo, send me a link to your portfolio and your desired page rate.


Spent and Empty.

Today is the deadline for the 2015 Top Cow Talent Hunt.

Today is also the due date for our Comic with 8th Wonder Press for their 2015 Anthology.

Everything is turned in. Everything has been looked at, double checked, triple checked… oh so many times.

I am empty. I am spent.


Steam rollin’

Just a quick update this week as I steam roll my way towards upcoming deadlines.

Next sunday, March 15th, I have two projects due.

Calendar with Deadline Circled

Wait, this picture is all wrong. The deadline is March 15th!!!  (AhahA,.. get it?)

First off, our final file for 8th Wonder Press 2015 Anthology is due. Nick is putting the finishing touches on his magnificent artwork. As soon as he is done, I will slap some super duper lettering on top and voila!  Our second published story will be on its merry way.

Second, the Top Cow Talent Hunt is ending next Sunday as well. It will be time for me to turn in my scripts. I wrote three and I am oh so proud of having made it so far. Regardless of the outcome, it has been a fantastic learning experience. I have to thank the friends who took the time to read and provide me feedback. I especially have to thank my wife for reading all the scripts and providing me with a necessary alternative point of view. I especially love that she suggested the best insult ever for a character to say in one of the scripts: ” Bring it, dickbags!”

As you can imagine, I still have plenty to do as the dreaded day approaches so Ciao and C U LATER.