NEWS, UPDATES, AND MORE ROYAL CITY?!
Greetings from the farm...
Hope you are all safe and doing well. The weather is just starting to turn to Fall here on the farm, my favourite time of the year, and usually my most productive period of the year too. For whatever reason I tend to get re-energized and refocused when the Fall hits and this Fall has been no different. I’ve started working on something new and it is really flowing. If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen some teasers I posted last week about my 2017 Image series ROYAL CITY…
Well, I can now say that I am in fact returning to Royal City!
The story never felt done to me and it has been consistently calling me back since I finished the series. As I wrote about in an earlier post, I really burned out on Royal City when I was writing, drawing and fully painting the book on a monthly schedule back in 2017-2018. In hindsight it was just too much. Of course, I was also writing about 50 Marvel and Image books at the same time too, so it’s not wonder the schedule wasn’t sustainable. But when the burn out faded I just felt a sense of regret, like I never finished the book properly and most importantly, like there was more story left to tell.
Now, several years later, I am ready to go back. I originally intended Royal City to be a place I could return to, and use the characters to explore new stories at different points in my life. I think that is exactly what it can still be. I finished “Volume 1” and now I’m going back with a bunch of new ideas and a new perspective.
Normally, I wouldn't announce a comic I am working on so early in the process. I’d wait until the book was done, or at least enough of it was finished that it was close to publishing it. But this Substack has changed things in that I want to be open and share what I am working on as I go and if I am writing this new Royal City for the next year or two and can’t talk about it or share artwork with you that would go against the purpose of this whole platform for me.
Of course, me sharing this with you so early also means that if you are a Royal City reader you are going to have to be really really patient.
I just started working on this new series last week and it will be a long time before it is ready to be published. There are a lot of factors that will go into how long it takes me to draw enough issues to start publishing it, the ever-changing pre-production and production schedule of the Essex County TV show being the biggest factor. As of today I have the whole series loosely outlined and I have started working on new character designs in my sketchbook. I likely won’t have enough new Royal City done to start publishing until early 2023. Of course it is always about finding a balance of sharing too much too soon and also letting you into the process a bit. But I’ll do my best to regularly update you on the book and share art as I go.
You may ask what this means for Fishflies, the story I have been drawing and serializing here each week? Well, as of now I already have enough Fishflies done to keep serializing it here for another year. So, it won’t effect that at all. And as I get into the new RC I’ll figure out how to juggle more Fishflies too.
The first wave of ideas on a new project is always an exciting time and I am very much riding that wave right now. The ideas are flowing as fast as I can write them down and I can’t wait to share more with you all.
In other news, the original artwork for Mazebook #1 and #2 is now for sale over at Cadence Comic Art. You can click here to find out more.
COMING SOON TO MY SUBSTACK
Earlier this week I posted the next instalment of the ongoing book-by-book history of my career in From The Vault #4 which covered 2004-2005 and the long lost book Hawker Hurricane as well as the formative work that led to the genesis of my Essex County books. These Vault entries are open to paid subscribers and the deep dive into Essex County is coming up next.
NEW BLACK HAMMER UPDATES
When I launched this Substack I promised some new Black Hammer stories. Those comics are now all very much in progress and will start being published here in December and then continue throughout the Spring. There are a lot of great creators collaborating on them with me including Lucy Sullivan, David A. Robertson, Lilah Sturges, Ray Fawkes and more. I should be able to start sharing some neat peeks art from those stories very soon.
All right, back to the sketchbooks. Royal City is calling. Talk to you all soon.
Oh…and one more thing. Keep an eye on my Instagram and Twitter this coming Sunday. My brilliant Primordial and Gideon Falls partner Andrea Sorrentino and I have something scary to share with you all on Halloween.