Dynamite goes Humble Bundle with biggest comics bundle ever

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The entire comics industry wants to go humble! Humble Bundle that is! Yet another publisher has signed up for this service which allows readers to pay what they wish to download a bunch of ebooks, while supporting charity, This time the publishers is Dynamite, and they have over 120 books up for grabs—the biggest comics bundle ever—and daily free comics including, today Red Sonja #1 by Gail Simone. It’s all to celebrate their 10th anniversary as a publisher.

While I’ve been writing this story I’ve been watching the ticker go upwards — more than 300 just in the 10 minutes it took to type and check for typos. (HA) Already more than 2000 bundles have been downloaded. In keeping with the tradition of promotions hosted and arranged by Humble Bundle, Dynamite will contribute a portion of the proceeds to three important charitable organizations, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

More deets:

Dynamite is proud to announce that, through the Humble Bundle, the following titles will be available to purchasers at a price they personally determine.  While full descriptions can be found at the Humble Bundle website, it’s noteworthy to point out the high caliber of contributing authors in this assortment:  Warren Ellis (Planetary, Moon Knight), Grant Morrison (Batman, Happy!), Tim Seeley (Batman: Eternal), Fred Van Lente (Incredible Hulk), Mark Millar (Kick Ass, Ultimates), Amanda Hocking (of the paranormal Hollowland series), Bryan Johnson and Walter Flanagan (stars of AMC TV’s Comic Book Men show), and much more.

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• Amanda Hocking’s The Hollows: A Hollowland Graphic Novel (Multiple Issues)
• Chaos #1
• Cryptozoic Man (Multiple Issues)
• The Mocking Dead Vol. 1 (Multiple Issues)
• My Little Phony: A Brony Adventure
• Project Superpowers Vol. 1 (Multiple Issues)
• Sherlock Holmes Vol. 1: The Trial of Sherlock Holmes (Multiple Issues)
• Vampirella Masters Series Vol. 1: Grant Morrison & Mark Millar (Multiple Issues)
• Vampirella Masters Series Vol. 2: Warren Ellis (Multiple Issues)
• Vampirella Vs. Fluffy


AND — when you pledge more than the average you get these books!

• George R.R. Martin’s Wild Cards: The Hard Call (Multiple Issues)
• Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files: War Cry #1
• Kevin Smith’s Green Hornet Vol. 1 (Multiple Issues)
• Kevin Smith’s Green Hornet Vol. 2 (Multiple Issues)
• Legenderry: A Steampunk Adventure (Multiple Issues)
• Pathfinder Vol. 1: Dark Waters Rising (Multiple Issues)
• Red Sonja Vol. 1: Queen of Plagues (Multiple Issues)
• Vampirella Masters Series Vol. 4: Alan Moore (Multiple Issues)

AND to those who exceed a a fixed pricing threshold, you get over 1000 pages of beautiful art with

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• The Dynamite Art of Alex Ross
• Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time Complete Series (35 Issues)

Let’s see how big this one gets, shall we?

Preview: Jeffrey Brown Incredible Change-Bots Two Point Something Something

Thanks to the success of his TWO Star Wars series—”Goodnight Darth Vader” has been on the bestseller list for weeks, and his Jedi Academy is a hit series for Scholastic—Jeffrey Brown has become one of the most successful contemporary cartoonists. But before he hit with Star Wars, he was making kids and adults laugh with his Incredible Change-Bots series which parodies, with the same gentle, loving humor, a certain transforming car franchise. TWo small books have come out but here’s a …third, or so. It’s called Incredible Change-Bots Two Point Something Something is a big 224 pages of both previously published and rarely seen material, including short stories, gallery art show pieces, game and toy designs, artwork created for fan club members, interviews with almost every Change-Bot, and more.

And here’s a preview!

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Heroes Con 2014 Was So Nice That Two Couples Got Engaged

by Alexander Añe

I’ve been going to conventions for years, and the only thing that’s been the same is that one person who says, “But you really have to go to Heroes Con.” There’s always someone praising Heroes Con, and now, I am one of them. [Read more…]

Interview: Jim Zub Discusses His “Wayward” Path

By Matt O’Keefe

Jim Zub has been on a tear since Skullkickers debuted in 2010. In four years he’s gone on to establish himself as writer of properties such as PathfinderSamurai Jack, and Disney Kingdoms: Figment. Now he’s going back to his creator-owned roots with Wayward, a comic book series from Image with Steve Cummings about a group of teens taking on the supernatural in Tokyo, Japan. I spoke with Jim about the thrill of launching a new title, and the journey that led to Wayward.

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Art by Steve Cummings and Ross A. Campbell.

This is your first new creator-owned book since 2010. Is launching a new series more exciting, or terrifying?

I thought it would be easier but, the minute the press release went out and Wayward was fully announced, I realized I’d forgotten that stomach-wrenching fear of putting out a new creator-owned series. It’s wonderful, but there’s definitely a bit of fear wrapped up in it.

Establishing a new title and getting people to try it out, that can be a tough prospect. I’m doing everything I can to make sure readers and retailers can see that we’re hauling ass on this and doing everything we can to launch strongly.

Japanese mythology has been left largely unexplored in Western fiction. It must be exciting to introduce such a rich world to readers who are largely unfamiliar with it.

Absolutely. Japanese mythic lore is such fertile ground for exploration on so many levels and I’m incredibly stoked to be able to use that foundation and bring a modern spin to it. Readers won’t need any prior knowledge in order to dive in and enjoy the character story but, by the time they’re done reading, I hope they’re intrigued and want to read more.

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Cover art by Alina Urusov.

What kind of Japanese mythical elements will we see in WaywardGhosts? Demons? Gods?

Yes. Yes. No comment. :)

The sheer variety of yokai at our fingertips is kind of staggering. I feel like our first story arc is just scratching the surface and that’s a very cool feeling.

That being said, I don’t want people to get the wrong idea that it’s all monsters all the time. Yes, the creatures and spirits are important, but it’s a really a story about these teenagers in Tokyo and their struggles.

Is Wayward Rori’s story, or do you consider it more of an ensemble piece?

It’s an ensemble, but Rori is our touchstone character who brings readers into that world, so the first arc is heavily weighted around her experiences. As the story goes on it expands past her and takes on a larger scope.

How far have you laid out Wayward? Is there an overarching story you’re telling?

The first arc is obviously tightly written and I know where our second arc goes, though Steve and I are still brainstorming ideas that will be a part of it. I’m really hoping readers connect with our cast and we launch strong so we can have a long and healthy run where we can explore bigger ideas about myth, belief, and supernatural elements in the modern world.

Interior art drawn by Steve Cummings with colors by John Rauch and Jim Zub.

Interior art drawn by Steve Cummings with colors by John Rauch and Jim Zub.

You and Steve Cummings created this series together. What were some of the benefits of knowing who was going to be drawing your story from the start?

Building a story with an artist and feeding off each other’s strengths right from the get-go is really empowering. There’s an enthusiasm and interplay that I don’t think you get when you’re writing a concept for no one in particular. Steve wanted to do an urban supernatural story set in Tokyo and I was eager to write something dark and engaging to meet that vision. The visual elements were right there from the start and in a visual medium like comics that’s ideal.

How has what you’ve learned about the comics industry since starting Skullkickers informed Wayward?

Well, right off the bat, I’m hoping 4 solid years of writing comics, more and more each year, has improved my storytelling abilities. I have a better sense of what’s possible on the page and how to communicate those ideas to an artist.

Beyond those aspects of the craft, I’ve promoted Skullkickers steadily at conventions, stores, online… slowly but surely broadening my network and hopefully proving to readers and retailers that the comics I create are worth supporting.

Over the past 4 years I’ve had other creator-owned projects I’ve developed but something always got gummed up – artist availability was the most common, but there were other projects that didn’t feel like the right book at the right time. I used to get freaked out that if I didn’t have a follow-up project out immediately I wouldn’t be able to “make it” in this business but now I’m more zen about it. I don’t want to have my name on something half-baked just because I can put it out. Wayward is Steve and I both putting our all into it.

Interior art drawn by Steve Cummings with colors by John Rauch and Jim Zub.

Interior art drawn by Steve Cummings with colors by John Rauch and Jim Zub.

You’ve talked a lot about productivity in the past. Is it harder to work on a creator-owned series like Wayward than a licensed book that has firm deadlines like Samurai Jack?

It’s definitely harder at the start because you don’t have a baseline. World building is always tough. It’s creatively satisfying to have it all be “yours” but setting up that framework and making those decisions is a lot of work compared to gathering reference material and building on what’s already there.

Even still, once I get rolling on a creator-owned project there’s a tremendous amount of pride there. The freedom to make big decisions quickly and to feed new ideas as they come to me is really wonderful. I really do enjoy balancing both creator-owned and work-for-hire projects. They flex different creative muscles and make me a better storyteller.

What’s inspiring you, in or outside of comics?

Comic-wise I’m loving, in no particular order, Saga, Daredevil, Swamp Thing, Conan, Amazing Spider-Man, The Sixth Gun, Shutter, Invincible… lots more.

Outside comics I’ve been reading quite a bit of non-fiction. My cousin gave me a great book all about social systems and the way we make decisions called “Nudge” that I quite enjoyed. I’m midway through Nate Silver’s The Signal and the Noise about predictability and data sets and it’s also pretty fascinating stuff.

I don’t get many chances to play tabletop RPGs any more thanks to my intense work schedule, but I tried out a storytelling improv-centric game that plays out all in one session called “Fiasco” a few months ago and it was stellar. Within a few hours you and your friends build a crazy crime story from scratch and play it through to an unexpected, and almost certainly hilarious, end. Creative, fun, and really fulfilling.

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Follow Jim on Twitter @JimZub and at his website full of awesome tutorials. Pre-order Wayward #1 at your local retailer with the form above.

The cover to Scott McCloud’s The Sculptor is unveiled

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Every year seems to bring an eagerly awaited, long brewing graphic novel by an industry master — and in 2015 that book looks to be Scott McCloud’s The Sculptor, which has been in the works for years and years. It’s currently slated to be released in February, and USA Today has the first look at the cover as well as some chat from McCloud on the subject matter:

Arriving in February, The Sculptor (First Second Books) stars a once-promising artist named David, who’s already washed up at 25. He makes a deal with Death to be remembered, and David’s given 200 days of being able to sculpt anything with his bare hands.

However, he then tumbles headlong into a romance forcing him to question what he wants from his life as well as his art.

“It’s big, loud and operatic at times, but also grounded in a lot of small, funny, human moments,” McCloud says. “Most of all, I just want it to be an engrossing read — a page-turner from beginning to end.”

Kickstarter success story: Little Nemo anthology funded and you will want a copy

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Locust Moon Comics in Philadelphia has been putting together ran all-star anthology celebrating Winsor McCay’s LIttle Nemo with contemporary artists going nuts artistically. The above strip by David “Mouse Guard” Petersen is but one example of many jaw-droppers. The Kickstarter for the book launched Monday and has already been funded, but you will probably want a copy of it, anyway. Here some more art just to add to the persuasion.

YOu can read more about the project at the Locust Moon blog.

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Roger Langridge and Jeremy Bastien

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Gerhard