goth

Been to see The Damned again

I ran out of superlatives on the way home last night but suffice to say The Damned played Leeds last night, OneMonkey and I were there, and it put me in such a good mood I didn’t even feel the Bah Humbug stir today as I faced December.

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Free ebook release of my first graphic novel

The death of books and traditional publishing is a hot topic at the moment, and while I firmly believe that print books will be around for a good many years yet, I do also think it’s time to admit there’s more of a mix than there used to be. Readers of this blog (as opposed to my other one) might not be aware of my graphic novel/comics output, self-published but that’s not as unusual for comics as it is for mainstream fiction. In further experimental fashion we (me, the artist Mark Pexton, and OneMonkey who does all the technical stuff) decided to make a pdf copy of the first graphic novel, Boys Don’t Cry, available for free (under creative commons license CC BY-NC-ND) here. This is an enticing picture of the cover:

Boys Don't Cry front cover

And here’s what the back cover says:

Teenage boys aren’t known for sharing their fears and emotions, so if you’re the father or sister of one, how do you know how he’s coping with his mum’s death?

Fifteen year old Hunter isn’t entirely sure himself, and even if he could put any of it into words, he no longer knows who to say it to.

So if zero pence sounds like a good price to pay for the beautifully-drawn saga of a bereaved teenage goth in Edinburgh, feel free to peruse and comment – part of the reason for doing this is to reach a wider audience; there’s only so many people willing to buy an 80-page graphic novel by relative unknowns and I’d prefer to have more people read it. Particularly those that might not normally think of themselves as graphic novel audience material.

Creative Commons License
Boys Don’t Cry by Jacqueline Saville, Mark Pexton, Andrew Woods is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The bright side

I’m cultivating a positive outlook at the moment; maybe it’s the cold affecting my inner curmudgeon, but there you go.

Strange, Weird & Wonderful has published its final issue, just before the one that my story was due in. So while that’s a sale I won’t make (payment on publication, not acceptance), a credit I can’t chalk up on my scoreboard, and a story that’s back to doing the rounds, if I was looking on the bright side I’d say at least I don’t have to produce that audio version after all (though I’d actually started to feel good about the challenge).

NaNoWriMo is going slowly, probably even slower than I’d anticipated, but if you know you’re not going to make it to 50,000 words, any number’s an achievement and you don’t end up feeling stressed and guilty if you do other things for a while during November. Such as a 2-day comic convention.

Thought Bubble is less than a week away which is a bit scary (in an exhilirating way). I also know that I’m not going to get an early night before it, and I’ll probably have had to put up with a late-night long-distance taxi ride. The bright side of that one is positively dazzling though: we’re off to see The Damned on Friday. Excuse me while I touch up my black nail varnish.

A proud moment at the bookcase

One of the reasons I’ve been quiet recently is that I’ve been concentrating on the graphic novel, its associated blog, and attending the Thought Bubble comic convention in Leeds. Well, Thought Bubble was on Saturday (hectic, tiring, but most enjoyable) so I might get round to doing other things for a while (like making the submission I’ve been almost completing for about 3 weeks) but in the meantime I thought I’d share the proud moment at which my own graphic novel joined Cerebus on the shelf (even if it was just in my own living room)

Boys Don't Cry joins some of my Cerebus volumes

See the main Ostragoth website if you think you’d like to know more or maybe even buy a copy.

Six of the best

Chapter six of Resurrection Joe is now available for your delectation. I realised I’d forgotten about it so it’s a bit later than my roughly monthly schedule would suggest, but I hope you’re not all too devastated at having to wait a while for it (I am of course joking, I know the view-count is made up of my friend D, and people whose cats land on the keyboard and take them to it by accident).

If you haven’t read the earlier chapters, you’ll probably still be able to follow the goings-on (though there’s nothing to stop you going back and reading them). Joe’s a goth who works in a bookshop, Caroline’s her flatmate and has an unsuitable boyfriend, Craig’s their friend and is glam (in the Motley Crue sense, not Slade). This chapter’s mainly set at a rock night, where important truths are learned (isn’t that always the way with rock nights…)

Chapter five in the gothic saga

On a weekend when I attended the Wendy House for the first time in a very long time, I give you chapter five of the eight-year-old saga of northern goths, Resurrection Joe. In case I haven’t said this before (I really can’t be bothered to check. It’s a Sunday afternoon, I’m surprised I have the energy and enthusiasm necessary to type this), the title is taken from a Cult song, just to keep the theme going. Enjoy.

Four chapters

Because I’ve had a tiring week at work and don’t have anything original to offer up for your delectation, chapter four of Resurrection Joe is now available. I notice that more people seem to have read the first chapter than subsequent ones, which probably should tell me something about how not to write opening chapters, so why not try diving in head-first at chapter four and seeing if you can work out who everyone is and what’s going on.

I’ve also fixed (I think) the annoying random line-wraps in the earlier chapters that I hadn’t noticed, so if that was what put you off in chapter one, give chapter two a go now, it’ll be easier on the eye if not on the mind.