Zarjaz Presents... Anderson, Psi Division: Clear & Present Danger Episode 1

And we're back into the mean streets of The Big Meg... This time, myself and letterer Bolt-01 are joined by the mighty Dunk Nimmo to bring you a very special Christmas themed Anderson tale.

As always, each episode of Clear & Present Danger will debut over at The FutureQuake Blog (and the 2000AD message boards) before popping up here, and I'll compile the strips on their own page if anyone wants to catch up.

The story continues tomorrow. In the meantime, you can check out all the previous "Zarjaz Dailies" here.

And remember: if you want even more supplementary Thrill Power, several issues of Zarjaz are available to buy from The FutureQuake site now!

FutureQuake: 2016 Winter Edition - Out Now!

A little late to this, I'll admit, seeing as the comics will be launching at Thought Bubble tomorrow, but the latest round of titles from FutureQuake Press are out now - and they include a story from me and my regular partner in crimes against comics Bryan Coyle called First Contact!

When The Olympian touches down on an unexplored world, the crew are struck down by a flu-like alien virus. While the ship's doctor, Harding, searches desperately for a cure, the ship's captain, Mendes, goes missing...

First Contact was an attempt to write a classic, old-school "Future Shock" style story, but it proved to be a lot tougher than I realised. It went through about four or five drafts before it got completely locked down and, thanks to some coaching on the script, I walked away from it having learned a hell of a lot. And, y'know, I think I got a pretty fun little story out of it, too.

There's not really much I can say about Bryan's work on this that I haven't said about three billion times before. He absolutely delivers on First Contact; not only does he bring his trademark crystal clear storytelling, he captures the right tone and atmosphere for the story, all while keeping everything grounded and realistic. He's a modern master in the making, I think - although, no one tell him I said that!

Anyway, the bumper sized FutureQuake Winter Edition is available to buy now from the brand, spanking new FutureQuake Press site, priced £6.50 (plus shipping) and features this cover from ECH:

The Winter Edition (or FutureQuake #30, if you prefer) should be available on Comixology shortly, too.

In the meantime, be sure and check out more back issues available from the FutureQuake Press site and check out their new blog, too!.

The 13th Stone

So, myself and Bryan Coyle have something of a Halloween tradition, that's seen us put out a short comic for last couple of years (you can read The Thing In The Window here and The Next Life here).

This year, however, we're doing something a little different... 

The 13th Stone is a self contained, 22 page one-shot from us (and Bolt-01 and some input from Dan Hill), which we're making available digitally via Gumroad, Sellfy and Payhip on a "pay what you want" basis.

Yep, that's right, you can grab all 22 pages of this and pay us whatever you want!

Taking a job in the small English village of Argleton, archaeologist Joy Lambton finds herself wiling away her spare time investigating the ancient stones that stand on the outskirts and trying to solve one particular mystery that surrounds them: why the few sources she can find claim there are only eleven stones, when there are clearly twelve.
But when she learns of a thirteenth stone, Joy begins to uncover the dark and terrifying connection they have to the village...

If that's whet your appetite, you can grab The 13th Stone from Gumroad here:

You can also grab the comic from Sellfy here:

And you can also get it from Payhip here:

We're going to be - hopefully - releasing it via Comixology in 2017, at a fixed price.

All that remains is to wish you all a Happy Halloween!

Melody Redux

With plans derailed and Halloween fast approaching, I've decided to try a little experiment, and re-released the short story I wrote last year on Gumroad on a "pay what you want" basis - so, until October 31st, you can nab this wee ghost story for literally nothing, if you want!

Here's a look at the cover and a little more about the story to whet your appetite...

When his fiancée puts their engagement on hold, Paul Grant finds himself whisked off to the town of Aviemore in the Scottish Highlands for a short golfing holiday to try and get his mind off everything. But when he meets Melody, the wife of the hotel owner, Grant finds himself embarking on a strange and sinister affair...

The story is available as a PDF via Gumroad - and you can, of course, pay what you want.

For all you Kindle owners, Melody is available for a paltry 99p from Amazon UK:

The story is also available via Amazon US:

Again, huge thanks to Bryan Coyle for providing that gorgeous cover (and the wraparound, which I don't think anyone's seen) and Chris Rowland for the edits.

So, go! Grab! Enjoy!


Update: Just because, here's Bryan's rarely seen wrap around cover:

Drawing A Line

Well, it's fair to say that the last few months have not exactly been the best for me. It's like the world decided it was my turn to have a metric ton of crap dropped in my lap to deal with while it pissed off and had a nice holiday in the sun.

So far, I've screwed up a couple of career opportunity (partly down to my own stupidity), screwed up a couple of personal opportunities (partly down to my own stupidity) and generally lost a lot of the gains I feel like I made last year. Oh, and, my mum was diagnosed with Cancer.

I'm not going to dwell on that too much here, as it's cast a long shadow over the last few months, and turned her life (and mine) upside down. Even though she's got the all clear, it still feels like it's there, hovering around like some annoying relative that doesn't want to leave, trying to monopolise her life, but she's determined to not let it. She's ready and raring to leave it in the dust where it belongs, and get back to normal, so I'm going to follow her lead.

Which, I guess, leads me to the point of this post.

It's all about drawing a line under these last few months in some small and pretty insignificant way, all things considered, and acting as a visual waypoint, for want of a better term, to remind myself that the shit storm is over and it's time to re-focus on who and what's important.

I don't know what's going to happen over the second half of 2016 (although the whole "Brexit" clusterfuck doesn't exactly fill me with confidence - there's a whole other, far angrier series of posts on that that need to be written, I think), but, hey, it can't be any worse than it's been so far, can it?

Can it...?

If you've read this far down, I'd like to offer you - for one day only - a free download of Melody, a short prose story by me.

Out Now: The Zarjaz & FutureQuake Summer Specials

With the release of the inaugural Zarjaz Summer Special, I can finally let the cat out of the bag about a secret project that's been brewing for a wee while, as myself, Paul Moore and Bolt-01 take Devlin Waugh out for A Night At The Opera...

Taking a break from a Black Atlantic Cruise to finally see the acclaimed opera Bok!, Devlin Waugh finds himself attending a private gathering thrown by the opera house's owner - a gathering that could well spell the end for the Vatican's most flamboyant exorcist...

Taking on Devlin Waugh is always a bit of a challenge. He's a character that's written with such a singular and unique voice that runs far beyond his fabulous nature, so it's hard to really dig into his little corner of Dredd's world and do it justice. I'd like to think I succeeded to a degree, but I'll let people reading decide...

Myself and Bolt-01 were joined by Paul Moore for this little adventure. I've worked with Paul once before, on the Rogue Trooper daily strip we did for the Zarjaz blog, so I was excited to see what he could do outside of the confines of that particular format - and he really doesn't disappoint. Paul brings a Steve Yeowell-esque level of realism to the strip, which helps capture the feel of some of Devlin's weirder adventures, while putting his own unique stamp on the story. It was an absolute joy watching his pages come in, and I can't wait to see what else we can do together.

Be sure to check out Paul's Tumblr gallery and follow him @PMoore121.

The Zarjaz Summer Special available to buy now from the FutureQuake Shop, priced £4.00 (plus shipping) and features this cover from Nigel Dobbyn:

And, remember, a whole bunch of back issues are still available from the FutureQuake Shop, if you think you can handle the extra Thrill Power!

Also out is the FutureQuake Summer Special, featuring an original strip, "Come Home", from myself and Justin Wood (with Bolt-01 on letters).

Tom James is a man trying to make a living, but he's also a man drowning in his own secrets - one of which is about to turn his life upside down...

"Come Home" is a weird one, as it's a story I wrote quite a while ago, when I was trying to push myself and try and just be better. Reading it back, it actually feels - to me - like it was a personal turning point for me, and, since this piece was wrapped, I've felt more confident and ready to try new things, and generally be more adventurous, for want of a better word, with my work.

This is the first time I've worked with Justin Wood, and he didn't disappoint. He brings this little story world to life beautifully, capturing the weirder elements and blending them seamlessly with the down to earth locales, all the while retaining some clear storytelling. Justin is a name to watch out for, mark my words.

You can see more of his work at his website.

Update: John Freeman at Down The Tubes casts his eye over the latest issue of FutureQuake and has some kind words about "Come Home" - read his review here.

The bumper sized FutureQuake Summer Edition is available to buy now from the FutureQuake Shop, priced £6.00 (plus shipping) and features this cover from Alex Paterson:

The special (or FutureQuake #29, if you prefer) should be available on Comixology shortly, too is now available from Comixology!

In the meantime, be sure and check out more back issues, available from the FQ web shop.

Zarjaz Presents... Judge Dredd: Voice Of Authority Episode 16

And that's another case in the Big Meg wrapped!

Thanks to Zarjaz for letting us do this under their banner and, of course, thanks to you for reading!

Remember, you can read the entire serial here, and all the previous Zarjaz Dailies, are available here.

The Zarjaz Dailies, however, will return later in the year...

Zarjaz Presents... Judge Dredd: Voice Of Authority Episode 15

Concludes tomorrow! Catch up on all the previous episodes here.

And remember: several issues of Zarjaz are currently available to buy from The FutureQuake Web Shop!

Zarjaz Presents... Judge Dredd: Voice Of Authority Episode 14

Continues tomorrow! Catch up on all the previous episodes here.

And remember: several issues of Zarjaz are currently available to buy from The FutureQuake Web Shop!

Zarjaz Presents... Judge Dredd: Voice Of Authority Episode 13

Continues tomorrow! Catch up on all the previous episodes here.

And remember: several issues of Zarjaz are currently available to buy from The FutureQuake Web Shop!