Wrestletown is Go!

Wrestletown is go! Temp Cover

Officially announcing the launch of my debut novel, WRESTLETOWN, on Inkshares! WRESTLETOWN is an illustrated novel featuring cover and 10-15 illustrations by the incredible Andrew MacLean (Head Lopper, Image Comics).

Inkshares is a publisher that functions similar to Kickstarter (crowdfunded) except it is by copy and not dollar amount (therefore pursuing a goal of reaching readers and avoiding vanity press issues, etc). My local bookshop, Papercuts J.P., published their debut anthology with them, and I've been very impressed with the quality of books I've seen them put out. Wrestletown is a success at 250 copies (POD) pre-ordered, upgrading to an offset printing at 750 copies. Inkshares provides editing, marketing and distribution (functioning like any other publisher). The campaign runs through October 30th, with publication in 2017.

You can read the first five chapters of WRESTLETOWN on Inkshares, and each week I'll be sending out updates to backers on inspiration and story. An official cover reveal is set for late July/early August with interior illustrations to follow.

I hope you'll give the book a shot and consider supporting the campaign. WRESTLETOWN is my favorite work to date and the most fun I've had writing.

Let's kick this pig!


Friday Reads - NATCH & March Madness

Happy Friday, readers! Next week marks my hopeful return to the blogosphere. Between the holidays and juggling several WIP, I've really let the blog fall to the wayside. I plan to fix that with a bunch of updates, reviews, etc. Onward!


First up, check out John Mantooth's Patreon page for his new novella, NATCH, which you can snag for a mere $3. I think it's some of John's best work, and if you enjoyed his short story, "A Sojourner's Guide to the Black Warrior River Bottoms (And Beyond)," in The Big Click, you will love NATCH. (and if you haven't checked out The Big Click yet, I urge you to do so. Some excellent short fiction in there.)

Here's the first line of NATCH to tempt you...

Before he was Natch, before he met Buzz and let her cut his hair, before he walked the Moon Bridge like a tightrope and was baptized under a shower of stars, he was Joe, just plain ole Joe, lost to the wilds of Northern Alabama, the windowless downtown Birmingham crack houses, the train yards north of there where he’d sit and make plans for Memphis, the outlying areas—wastelands, he thought of them—where he met others like himself, mirror images of lost boys gone crooked on meth amphetamines and the hard, cold loneliness of the road.

...you know you want to keep reading.

Next up, Broken River Books Year Two: March Madness

BRB's first Kickstarter was a huge success that got the small press off at a sprint. J. David Osborne aims to release TWELVE books on the same day this go around.

37517135457b61a1dc483ba6699914c2_largeI've been chomping at the bit for William Boyle's short story collection, DEATH DON'T HAVE NO MERCY, and with eleven more to choose from, I'll be buried in books. Check 'em out and prep the wallet.

Keep reading & see you Monday.

Paint the World

Painting an entire favela in Rio de Janeiro

Painting Favela

As some of you know, I'm a huge fan of crowd sourced projects. From graphic novels and games to social change, I love supporting 'indie' work.

About once a week Kickstarter sends out an e-mail entitled, "Projects We Love," highlighting some of the company's favorite ongoing projects, the latest of which I found fascinating. I've been doing a lot of research on Brazil's favelas, more specifically those around Rio de Janeiro, for a comic book I'm currently writing. Favelas have shown up in recent years as a stage for big budget action (the Call of Duty and Fast and Furious franchises both feature them) but there is a human aspect of these 'cities' that we less often see.

Enter Haas and Hahn of the Favela Painting project.

From their Kickstarter page:

Between 2005 and now, the favelas of Rio de Janeiro have provided the inspiration and locations for several public artworks that we painted together with local community members. Each new project being larger than the last, we now we aim to realize our ultimate dream; to plaster and paint an entire hillside favela. With your help we will return to Rio to create this community artwork of unprecedented scale: A monument that will radiate the pride and energy of the people who live in a community that they built with their own hands.

When we first visited the favelas in 2005, the way they are built and how they function socially struck us as very beautiful. At the same time they were generally perceived as grim, dangerous and dysfunctional.

Our project aims to provide an opportunity for people to transform their own neighborhood from a place seen as negative into a place that is able to communicate its creativity, beauty and innovation to the outside world through art.

While painting the houses brings a visual improvement, plastering them helps with controlling moisture, acoustics and temperature. Through training and hiring, jobs are created in places where opportunities are scarce. More people coming to see the artwork will bring new business and employment opportunities for locals.

Visual beautification, job creation and positive attention boost pride and self esteem and help bridge social gaps in a creative and artful manner. The projects create a voice for the inhabitants, influence public opinion and media, and can help to change perception and remove stigma.

Given the upheaval and change within Brazil in preparation for the coming World Cup and Summer Olympics, it's nice to see a shift in focus and such a drive for improvement at the lowest levels of society. Check out more pictures and see their plans, HERE.

Painting Favela Concept

Let's Kick this Pig!

Kickstarter is a fantastic site that allows creators to crowd-source funds for creative projects (books, games, music, photography, and more.)

I found stumbled onto Kickstarter via MEAT SPACE on BNN a few months ago and I'm hooked.  There is some amazing talent and it feels great to be able to support such creativity.

The Kickstarter Projects I'm backing:

Reincar(NATE) -  Reincar(NATE) is a 102-page, full-color graphic novel that tells the story of Nate McCoy, a well-meaning, down on his luck P.I. who has a special ability--he can see and interact with past versions of himself. The people he reincarnated from. With the help of Jameson (a Wild West lawman) and Alan (a 1960s-era hitman), Nate works to solve his latest case, one that digs straight to the heart of the city's criminal underworld.

The first project that I backed, Reincar(NATE) sold me with the video they created - very cool, stylized noir.  Helped that I had just read several noir comics at the time!  It was successfully funded on 05/04/2012.

Sullivan's SluggersLong past their former glory, the minor league Sluggers get an invitation to play a baseball game in a cursed small town. After the 7th inning stretch, the sun goes down, and the dysfunctional teammates find themselves fighting for their lives against a town of flesh-eating monsters!

Now, it's up to coach Casey Sullivan to help his team escape from being the next dish in the town's terrifying feeding frenzy!

Eisner & Harvey Award-winning graphic novel author Mark Andrew Smith joins forces with Eisner nominated illustrator James Stokoe for a gripping roller coaster of a graphic novel, packed with shocks, gore, and screamingly outrageous humor, when America's Favorite Past Time becomes one team's ultimate nightmare!

As of this post, Sullivan's Sluggers has 4 days to go and already has CRUSHED their initial goal of $6,000 (currently at over $69,000.)  Smith and Stokoe are extremely passionate about the project and have added new rewards every week for each fundraising milestone.  Again, the video for the graphic novel sold me - well produced compared to what I have seen on Kickstarter to date.  Can't wait to get my hands on this beast!

Nightmare Magazine - Nightmare Magazine is a monthly magazine of horror and dark fantasy short fiction which will be published both online and in ebook format.  It is edited by none other than John Joseph Adams and issue one has already lined up Laird Barron, Sarah Langan, Jonathon Maberry and Genevieve Valentine.

Nightmare Magazine was successfully funded on 06/07/2012.

Children of the Revolution - Children of the Revolution is a Vampire the Masquerade Twentieth Anniversary book that tells the stories of noteworthy and notorious kindred of the modern nights.

Growing up, I didn't play many pen and paper RPGs, but I read A LOT of books.  I found settings like Vampire, Werewolf, Hunter and Deadlands to be fascinating.  I've written tens of campaigns (most of which were never played out) but creating these adventures made me realize my passion for writing.  I still enjoy curling up with these tomes for bursts of inspiration and to travel back to the World of Darkness.

Children of the Revolution was successfully funded on 06/10/2012.

What will you help kickstart? I'm already eyeing my next...