Sunday, December 19, 2010

Breyfogle: Philosopher, Statesman, and Rockstar

Norm Breyfogle is a master storyteller. Considered by many to be one of the premiere Batman artists, he is at once thoughtful, stoic, polite, and unbelievably kind. Since he began life as a commercial artist and graphics illustrator in the early 1980's, his work has encompassed genres such as science fiction, fantasy, pulp, slice-of-life, and super-dudes. From Shadow Of The Bat to Prime to Hellcat to .40 Caliber Mouse to Archie, Norm's work is always distinctive, and always a pleasure to read.
Here Norm talks with longtime fan Richard Caldwell, about this and that.

Norm, in what part of the country were you raised? Do you consider yourself at all the product of your environment?

I was born in Iowa City, Iowa. After my parents' divorce when I was 3, my brother, sister, mother, and I moved to Illinois and we subsequently moved often, living in various suburbs of Chicago until I was 14 and we moved to Michigan. I lived there until I was 22, and right after college I moved to California, where I stayed for about 20 years. 10 years ago I moved back to Michigan to downsize and reconnoiter after being unceremoniously dumped by DC Comics and Marvel Comics. I've lived in Michigan since then.

We're all products of our environments, and our genetics. For a generation or more now, our environmental influences have widened far beyond our mere geographic localities. So, even though I have a lot of the Midwest heartland Plains kid in me, I was very early influenced by, for instance, the cultural revolution of the 1960s centered largely in California. By the time I'd reached adulthood I'd universalized my awareness to include, more or less, all of humanity... at least, ideally and in principle.

Like many children, you drew your own comics when you were young, but were there other forms of creativity that compelled you as well? Was there a singular moment when you were made aware that the realm of graphic arts was indeed the life for you?

You're right; I did draw my own comics. I'd wanted to draw comics ever since I was about nine years old, when I first became aware of Neal Adams' comics work on Batman. However, at that young age I didn't think about it as an actual career, but just as a fun thing to do.
I also felt attracted to acting and athletics while in grade school and junior high school. I also knew that a writer was buried deep inside my psyche.

As I got older, I developed an interest in science, and by the time I was 12 or so I wanted to become either a physicist or an astronomer/cosmologist.

There was indeed a very specific moment in which I decided to pursue visual art instead of science as a real profession. Because I'd continued to develop my drawing abilities all along as a hobby for my own pleasure, when I was 13 my mother started taking me to private art lessons with a commercial artist named Andrew Benson (not Andrew Benson the scientist, by the way; that's someone else, entirely unrelated). After a year of those lessons I felt compelled to make a decision, and because I was becoming a very religious young man at that time, and since I was torn between pursuing science or art, I prayed about it. See, I was afraid that art was too unimportant a contribution in comparison to science.
Well, I didn't hear a voice from the sky answer my question or anything like that, but I did decide then that God wouldn't have given me my drawing ability unless he wanted me to use it. In reality, I guess I simply felt that I was a better artist than I was a scientist. It's definitely WAAAY true NOW! lol

I know that your original Metaphysique books from Eclipse collected much of your college-era work, but what was your first actual published work?

I guess that would be "Tech Team," a one issue comic book which I co-plotted, wrote, drew, and lettered for Michigan Technological University when I was 17. Michigan Tech printed 10,000 copies of it and distributed it to high schools around the nation in 1978, as an advertisement to get graduating high school students to consider attending Michigan Tech. The original artwork for that comic book is still on file in the Michigan Tech Archives.

And as your work generally stands out for always being of the utmost highest calibre, do you feel your earlier contributions still stand well?

Well, I'm my own worst critic. I'd say that some of it stands up quite well, but even the best of it would be better if I did it now. I've often wished that I'd gotten the Batman gig five or so years later in my career, because it might well turn out to be the most popular work I'll have done in my entire life. Still, I did recognize the importance of it at the time, and it was a dream gig come true for me, so I put as much effort into it as I was capable of at that time.

Have your own standards changed much over the years?

Not really too very much, but a bit, yes. I've gained a much greater appreciation for simplicity of technique, and for more personal work. Also, my understanding of storytelling in general (and dialogue, and many other elements in the repertoire of comics) has radically improved.

What resources have inspired you in your approach to graphic storytelling? Your action sequences in particular have always been so marvelously well-thought out, though of course you have tackled a great number of different genres thus far. Are there authors you greatly admire, filmmakers who've influenced your perspective?

When I was a young comics fan and amateur comics artist, I was mostly interested in drawing super-hero action scenes, so much so that, early on, I was able to draw human anatomy in action at a much higher competency level than I could draw anything else. However, I was also always working on single image works of art (paintings and drawings of landscapes, portraits, buildings, science and sci-fi subject matter, etc.) so I also learned about light and shadow and perspective and drawing mundane objects of all sorts, and eventually this improved my comics art, too.

I mentioned that I was an athletic young man, and I loved martial arts films (along with movies of all types), so when I turned pro and drew Batman (for instance) I loved choreographing his fight scenes and exaggerating his cape and shadows for maximum dramatic effect. Martial arts films had an effect on this, especially those starring Bruce Lee.

Many comics artists also mention Sergio Leone's films as an influence, and I'd cite his work, too. Comics art -- especially adventure comics -- is all about maximizing contrasts of all kinds, and Leone excelled at that with his extreme close-ups contrasted against distance shots and with his pacing and with his build-up of mood via music and panoramic movement.

Ultimately, though, I can't say that films had as much an influence on my art as did other static-art artists, from comics art to classical paintings to Impressionism and Expressionism to Modern Art, etc. Although there are some similarities between film and comics, there are just as many differences, and comics is its own art form, with its own rules and parameters. So, when it comes to the influences on my comics art, it's much easier to name other comics artists and illustrators of other types of non-moving (non-filmed) images.

As far as writing and stories goes, I've always been an avid reader, but my reading choices never really included comics very often at all. They used to a bit more than they do now, but that was only ever true for me because I wanted to DRAW comics, not really write them. The only comics that really engaged my writing sensibilities were the more philosophical stories I sometimes saw published in Heavy Metal magazine and other avant-garde books. I even loved writing those kind of comics stories and that's what my first version of Metaphysique (published by Eclipse Comics) contained. Sadly, there is isn't much of a market at all for that kind of comics, at least not in the USA.

Basically, what I'm saying, I think, is that my writing sensibilities may too esoteric for the comics market, but my drawing skills are ideal for it. although I love to write, I've never had any deep desire to write super- hero comics. But, I do love drawing them!

And your painting skills remain in a class of their own. Now to the meat and potatoes. In your experience overall, as a popular graphic artist of the field, do you consider your own growing spirituality as playing a cause in how the larger publishers have, thus far, handled your career? Do you ever worry that your own personal beliefs are exactly what is costing you mainstream gigs?

My spirituality was fully "grown" by the time I turned pro, so the answer to that would be "no."

Now, if you're talking political beliefs, that would be a different question. But, you didn't ask that.

Was it during a specific point for you creatively, when your own spiritual beliefs were no longer something one could so easily leave by the way side? I guess what I am trying for... so many of your fellow creators, by my count, seem to think the world of you and your efforts over the years. You are at least, accepted as well as respected, by so many. What could possibly be missing? Is it at all possible that your thorough spirituality in particular might well be what has cost you limelight from the larger publishers, as bland as they can often be?

I don't think my spirituality has had any negative impact on my career as an artist. I never mixed the two professionally, except once, in my creator-owned, written, and drawn Metaphysique. But that was all mine, and it wasn't so iconoclastic, anyway, arguably not even "spiritual" in any classic sense of the word. But especially, it never spilled into any of my other work.

Despite the big two's bizarre shutting out in recent years of numerous creators with incredible skill and experience, you have been meeting with a deserved attention for your more recent work with Archie Comics. Archie has always been surprisingly experimental, and their longevity speaks for itself. In the minds of some fans, your working on those properties fits like a glove, actually. Despite the many other major icons you've handled previously, does this chance to help tell the tales of Archie, Jughead and the rest appeal at all to your inner fan?

What caused Marvel and DC to boot me out of their fold is a mystery to me. On my website, years ago, I speculated about this in depth and I came up with nine or so possible reasons, but they were - and are still - all speculation. I HAD to speculate, because the companies never gave me a reason, and the things they DID express to me seemed quite self-contradictory.

Politics (not spirituality) was just one of my speculations. My liberal/progressive views might have seemed dangerous to the power elite after 9/11/01 (however, it seems I'm being proven more and more correct with every passing year). Other of my speculations included ageism, trendism, cronyism, personal grudges, page rates, and some others I don't recall off-hand. However, I don't know what the real reason is, and I probably never will.

As for Archie: I remember reading and enjoying Archie when I was a kid, but I was always more attracted to the adventure, heroic, and super-hero comics. I can't say that I was ever a "fanatic" about Archie like I was about, for instance, Batman. I never had a desire to draw Archie, either, because I wanted to draw in what I considered to be a more "realistic" and dramatic style, ala Neal Adams, et al. So, when I hooked up with Archie Comics via a chance meeting with Mike Pellerito (Archie Comics president) at a convention, I just saw it as a job opportunity, since the title I was working on at the time was drawing to a close and I anticipated needing the work.

Well, I've been very happy to discover that I enjoy drawing for Archie much more than I would have dreamed, for four main reasons:
1) I discovered that the Archie drawing style is much more malleable than I thought, and as long as one maintains the same basic formulas for the characters' faces and body proportions, everything else can be more or less realistic or dramatic and it will still look like classic Archie.
2) Now that I've professionally drawn thousands of comics pages over 23 years, I find that I can enjoy drawing "mundane" situations and "talking heads" scenes just about as much as I enjoy drawing cosmic battle scenes and muscular anatomy; the storytelling's the thing, and every page has its own dynamic design.
3) I didn't know when I started with Archie that the story lines from Michael Uslan and Paul Kupperberg were going to be so interesting and profound, nor did I know that we'd be getting published in a magazine format with such fantastic production values. I feel that we're really breaking new ground!
4) Archie is a quintessential American icon, with a great pedigree and publishing history, and they seem to really value my contribution.

I just think that success deserves to result from passion. While you have been passed over by the whims of the current powers that be at certain publishing houses, your work still speaks for itself, as does your ethic. And I think it does show in the Archie stuff, that on some level you do seem to be enjoying it.
However, are there any roads not yet travelled that interest you, any genres that you would still love to take a crack at? And for that matter, freelancing life aside, are there preferences for you, insofar as what map to take in your creative path? Are there specific things in mind that you aim to one day accomplish? Like, would you even be willing to ever return to Marvel and/or DC characters, in light of the assorted and sordid behind the scenes politics at play, or is it just onward and upward?

Yes, there are other things I want to do professionally, besides comics. Mainly, I'd like to finish my prose novel, then illustrate it, then have it published, one way or another. Then, I'd like to finish writing (and then publish) a book of my short prose stories, also illustrated, then a book of my poetry, also illustrated. Someday sooner or later, I'll forego all my other paying work in order to concentrate on these projects.

I've also always wanted to paint fiction novel book cover illustrations. I've done precious little of that, so far. And, I've never worked for the movie industry in any capacity. Haven't even approached any film studios; never looked for that kind of work, yet.

As for Marvel and DC, I'd be happy to work with them again, when and/or if the offer came and if I was able to fit it into my schedule. To me, none of what happened is anything personal; I'm a commercial artist as well as an idealistic one, and when I'm being commercial, I accept any work that pays well enough. There's very little that I wouldn't do for the right compensation; I wouldn't illustrate porn or political or other manifestos which offend me too much but, otherwise, I'm easy to work with, and as long as my clients don't mind my honesty, we can get along just fine.

I wonder if maybe you are just too logical for the business. But if sequential art had not panned out for you at all, what do you imagine that the parallel reality Norm Breyfogle would be doing with himself? (Other than scribing poetry!) Essentially, what outside of the Arts maintains your interests?

What would be the most likely alternate reality Norms' professions? Here's some possibilities, in descending order of my opinion of their likelihood):
"fine" or "gallery" artist
art teacher/professor
fiction writer
philosophy teacher/writer
athlete; then, physical education instructor and/or personal trainer

Something else I have wondered about- judging from your dealer's site, as well as the many goodies up for grabs through your own website, you seem willing to part with much of your work. Are there though, any particular pieces of yours that you are especially proud of- to the point of their remaining in your own collection indefinitely?

Simply put: no. Everything but my soul is up for sale, and I've already sold almost all of the comics work I produced up to about 4 years ago. I'm a working man. I have no support other than that which I can generate from my own rich relatives, no stocks or savings bonds, no real investments at all at this point... just me. Been that way more or less for 25 years, except for my house I owned in California that I sold a decade ago. And, I'm not in debt; I paid all of that off, on my own. I refuse to immorally slough off my own debt onto others, as so much of our culture is willing to do.
Regarding an earlier response of mine to one of your questions about influence on my art from movies/films: I was watching Hitchcock's "The Birds" last night (must've seen that film about 15-20 times by now, the first being on TV at 6 or 7 years old, in 1966-7, just 3 or 4 years after its release to theaters), and I was once again struck by its expertly clear visual storytelling. I'm sure there are many other movies by many other directors that have equally influenced my storytelling, but in addition to Sergio Leone, I'd have to list Alfred Hitchcock as being at or near the top of my list, just off the top of my head. Orson Welles would be another such director. Stanley Kubrick, another.

Ya know, I've actually heard before that Hitchcock was one of the first major directors to utilize storyboards for his films, so he surely put tremendous thought into the construction of his visuals, even prior to actual filming. And it is one thing to succeed at survival, but to do so while bringing so much wonderful art to the world in the doing, well that's just incredible. I guess as our dialogue comes close to its end, one other bit I'm sure many fans would appreciate your sharing- what's your literal creative space like? Do you put together a specific atmosphere for yourself, movie in the background and a bowl of snacks, music and ambiance, etc? Are you the sort who can chat on the phone while inking, or does solitude play a bigger role in your practice?

I can't chat while working; way too distracting to me.

One of the bedrooms in my two-bedroom apartment is my studio, and it's functional but messy. At any one time I'll have tons of reference material and even artists' materials all over the place, even all over the floor. I don't eat or drink in my studio, or watch TV (that would create too much temptation to look at the screen rather that at the object of my work). I do listen to music, though. During the thumbnail stages of drawing a comic book (for instance), when I'm reading the script and designing the pages based on it, I can't listen to lyrics because it interferes with my processing of the words of the script, so at that stage I listen only to instrumentals (jazz, classical, or other). Once the layouts are all done and all that's left is the detailing, I can listen to songs with lyrics while I work.

Norm, it has been a rock-solid honor and privilege to share these words with you. Thank you, sincerely, from the full A.N.A gang, for putting up with my infernal questions and sharing. Your many fans already know how much you have helped lead this medium in terms of graphic innovation, but your candidness and honesty are totally icing on the devil's food cake. Thank you, sir. But before we part ways so that you can return to your bread and butter and satori, what upcoming projects might readers look forward to?

My hands are chock full with 50 pages of Archie comics per month for an indefinite amount of time (basically as long as I wish to continue; they've expressed that they'd like to keep me employed for the rest of my life!), so, other than my eventual finishing of my novel, and short story and poetry books (none of which are on any kind of schedule), that's it for now.

And, it's been a pleasure for me as well, Richard!

To see Norm's latest work, check out the good Archie Comics.

To see some recent non-Archie work, enjoy the Munden's Bar story for comicmix.

For all else Norm, including commissions and forum fun, go to his website.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Introducing...Daniel Woolley!

Daniel Woolley is a new kid on the scene, whose ability to write tales that take seemingly familiar scenarios and turn them on ear will likely draw comparisons to a young Peter David. Here, the writer gets grilled good by A.N.A Ed In Chief Anthony Hary.
Additional editing by that R
ichard Caldwell guy.

We first met your Henchman as the fun hit from the 2010 A.N.A Spring anthology. Though with your upcoming series, readers will be thrown headfirst into how the Henchman is all about being unhappy with one's place in the world, and wanting to do something about it. It’s a position I think we can all identify with, even if we don’t have the misfortune of being ordered around by a criminal with a color-coated costume. The story takes place in a reality which is a blend between the real world and your typical superhero universe. It revolves around John Wright, the head lackey for a supervillain, who becomes fed up with what he’s doing with his life, and when an accident gives him powers of his own, decides to work for the other side as a "good guy".

Is that about it?

The idea really came from my love of superheroes, and wanting to tell a story which comments on what I always felt was the central concept of the genre, the desire to change the world, in a somewhat more realistic way. I say somewhat more realistic because I didn’t want to do the full-on "people with powers in the real world" story, where the powers are the only thing that’s different, and everything’s just all grim and gritty. Instead I wanted to have a world with all the unbelievable, fantastic tropes of a super-universe, and just have the main characters react in a way more akin to how I would imagine reacting in such a place. Sure sometimes that world would be scary and violent and dark (which the book has in spades), but it would also be freaking hilarious at times and having that humor in the story is one of my favorite things.

I very much liked the idea of getting in on the ground floor of something, joining with a small company that I felt, if they worked at it, had a definite chance to become something bigger. I also really enjoyed the fact that ANA was composed solely by comics artists, like the inmates were running the asylum. So I figured creativity- the art, the story- would be the most important thing to them, just like it is for me. With ANA I found a publisher who I think I could really build something with.

How did you become interested in writing?

Well there’s a saying that to be a great writer first you must be a great reader, and I always had the latter part down cold. ever since I was a kid I would read voraciously and after I finished a story i always found myself imagining what happened to the characters next, and it was just a short leap from there to writing things of my own. And when I was in college (first as a pre-med major, then in the philosophy department) I asked myself what I actually wanted to do with my life. Turned out it wasn’t a very tough question. I completed my degree in creative writing from the University of Arkansas (which believe it or not is a fairly prestigious program) and this, Henchman, is the very first project that I tried to get published after graduating.

Was it always with an eye towards comic books?

Yeah. I’ve always loved comics. I enjoy writing in other formats too- short stories, novels, movie scripts. But comic books were always my favorite and if I could write anything I want, I’ll pick comics every time.

You mentioned going to school for writing, do you recommend to other writers to take that time and learn via a school course?

I really do. Obviously you don’t’ have to get a degree in the field to learn how to write, but you will learn a lot of things in a good program that would take you ten times as long to figure out for yourself. I’d say the 3 best things you get in a creative writing program are:

1. Learning how to actually sit down and WRITE, to produce pages and meet a deadline.

2. Work-shopping, having a group of people read your work, sit down, and actually tell you exactly what they think. It’s a useful experience in several ways.

3. The professors. Lauded, well published, skilled authors looking at your work and giving you the benefit of their years of experience is invaluable, and if you can make an impression on them they can open a lot of doors for you. One of my professors even went so far as to set up a meeting for me with his literary agent (try managing that on your own).

A creative question- how do you as a creator approach picking names? Does it come naturally, or do you have the name before you start or after you have fully realized the character?

The main character of the book Is John Wright, and I’ll admit naming characters probably takes me a lot more time than it should, as I do tend to obsess over it a little. It’s important to me that a character’s name not only fits them thematically but also that it sounds right. In John’s case I wanted a name that was short, to the point, fit his background, and had an everyman quality.

Tell us a little bit about your creative team on HENCHMAN, who is the artist and how did you two get connected?

The artist on the book Is J.C. Grande, whom I can’t say enough fantastic, astonishing things about. He’s a terrific guy and an absolute beast of an artist (imagine a Gorilla swinging through a jungle of 11x17 artboards with a blue pencil and a crow-quill pen). He’s been published by several indy companies already, including Image Comics, and I was somehow lucky enough to have him reply to an ad I put on digital webbing. Not only that but he really liked the script and actively wanted to be involved, which was just so gratifying to a first timer like me.

With this announcement and interview going out, we know you have issue 1 done and on its way to the printer, how are things coming with issue 2?

Issue two is almost completely done. I’ve had the scripts for the entire first story arc done for a while and J.C. turned in the last of the pages about a week ago, and again he did a bang up job. This time he even did his own colors, which I was amazed by. Right now I’m in the middle of lettering it and J.C. and I are working out the cover, and after that we’ll have finished a really fun second installment.

Do you see this as an ongoing series or a mini-series?

The story does have a definitive end point planned, but in the best of all possible worlds I could tell years of stories before getting to it. My plan at moment is for each story arc to be put out as a miniseries, much the same way that Mike Mignola releases Hellboy or Rick Remender does with Fear Agent.

Are there plans in place for an special merchandise or events in the future related to your project?

I’m planning on hitting the convention circuit in support of the book, and there will also probably be a release party for the first issue in Fayetteville, Arkansas (I’ll make information on both of these things available online). As far as merchandise goes, I’d certainly love to have Henchman t-shirts and toys and collectible salt and pepper shakers, and commemorative coins and… but it’s a little early for that yet. Still, in the future you never know.

Where can our readers go to follow your progress and keep up on all things Henchman?

I’m pleased to say that ANA Comics has set up a forum for the book on their boards. I’ll be posting there often and enthusiastically so if you have any questions or comments please come on by. I’m also in the process of building my own personal website at which will be up by the release of the first issue, you’ll be able to get updates about the book there as well as info on my other projects and some other neat content.

Thanks so much for sitting down with us to chat Daniel, is there anything you would like to share in closing?

I just want to say how happy I am to have the book coming out with ANA and hope you all enjoy it. If you do, please tell your friends and help me get the word out.

I promise I’ll do my best to deliver a great series and a great overall comic book experience to my readers.

See more of Daniel's upcoming work via:


Monday, December 6, 2010


(note: A.N.A. Comics' Anthony Hary is featured in this anthology as the artist for the final story in the book, Written by Dustin Archibald, with assists on inks by A.N.A. Comics' Nicholas Myers.)

HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE anthology to benefit The Hero Initiative

Ronin Studios' HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE – a 188-page comic book anthology benefiting The Hero Initiative – is available in comic book stores everywhere starting February 21, 2011.

HOPE has 25 short stories and pinups by more than 80 creators from around the world. All have themes focused on heroes and the nature of heroism. The Hero Initiative creates a financial safety net for comic creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work.

"Working on HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE is a great experience. There’s a lot of super talent in this book," says HOPE editor Dustin Archibald. "The Hero Initiative is an amazing organization that truly helps people in need. Their efforts of aiding comic creators in need are something any comic reader can get behind."

The pieces in HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE were created by up-and-comers in the comics industry and established professionals including Tom Nguyen (52, Final Crisis), Jake Black (Batman: Brave and Bold, Smallville), Russell Lissau (The Batman Strikes), and Gerry Alanguilan (Ultimate Avengers, Hulk). Ray Anthony Height (The Amazing Spider-Man) drew the cover.The book’s release is part of a fund and awareness raising campaign to benefit comic creators in need with all profits going directly to The Hero Initiative. HOPE shows that the comics community is willing to do its part.

Added Pain Killer Jane creator and Jonah Hex writer Jimmy Palmiotti: " Elegantly told and beautifully rendered, HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE is a must have for any collection. Comics done for the right reason. "

The full color softcover has a cover price of $19.95 and can be ordered from retailers with the Diamond Order Code DEC101038.

More information about HOPE can be found at To interview the creators or editors, e-mail

HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE anthology to benefit The Hero Initiative

Ronin Studios' HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE – a 188-page comic book anthology benefiting The Hero Initiative – is available in comic book stores everywhere starting February 21, 2011.

HOPE has 25 short stories and pinups by more than 80 creators from around the world. All have themes focused on heroes and the nature of heroism. The Hero Initiative creates a financial safety net for comic creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work.

"Working on HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE is a great experience. There’s a lot of super talent in this book," says HOPE editor Dustin Archibald. "The Hero Initiative is an amazing organization that truly helps people in need. Their efforts of aiding comic creators in need are something any comic reader can get behind."

The pieces in HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE were created by up-and-comers in the comics industry and established professionals including Tom Nguyen (52, Final Crisis), Jake Black (Batman: Brave and Bold, Smallville), Russell Lissau (The Batman Strikes), and Gerry Alanguilan (Ultimate Avengers, Hulk). Ray Anthony Height (The Amazing Spider-Man) drew the cover.
The book’s release is part of a fund and awareness raising campaign to benefit comic creators in need with all profits going directly to The Hero Initiative. HOPE shows that the comics community is willing to do its part.

Added Pain Killer Jane creator and Jonah Hex writer Jimmy Palmiotti: " Elegantly told and beautifully rendered, HOPE: THE HERO INITIATIVE is a must have for any collection. Comics done for the right reason. "

The full color softcover has a cover price of $19.95 and can be ordered from retailers with the Diamond Order Code DEC101038.

More information about HOPE can be found at To interview the creators or editors, e-mail

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


How to Make Comics!!

There a so many ways to “make comics” or to “break in” to this business. Tim Seeley, I believe said recently that it’s easier to break in to comics, then it is to stay in. I think to a very real level this is true. Think about it, list the names of quote “professional” creators out there, then tell me, who is doing pencils or writing on Spidergirl right now? Do you even know how long they have been on the title? I’m sure there are a few Spidergirl fans out there that would know the answer, yet compared to who could name the creators on titles like New Avengers, Superman, Green Lantern, or even Spiderman, there would be no comparison. Yet even YOU can make a comic.

Now you have options, choices to pick through to determine what it is you want to do. You can mold yourself, and get yourself in to a publisher doing work for hire assignments where you all you have is the pay for your work and occasional royalties from larger sales numbers. You could also do creator owned, self published work, where you are paid nothing up front, yet should your book do well, the money, creative rights, and ownership ALL go to YOU and no one else. Between these two most common paths there seems to be one trend that stands out over the last 15 years in comics. It is the strength of the creative team.

You’ll hear Editors talk about the finer points of storytelling, strength of solid anatomy, or the value in having a depth of knowledge regarding specific characters or the historical continuity of a character. What I am talking to you about is being a student of the game, knowing the business side of things and using that to your advantage. It is not for everyone. And that is ok, some people should only write or draw, ink or color, allowing the editors of the business handle the pairing of groups together, hoping one day to find their Jeph Loeb to their Ed McGuiness. Yet for those out there who have a need to steer their careers a little more there is a simple truth that can be found from studying the history of successful creators in the last 10 to 15 years.

Some creator teams didn’t find themselves until they were at a publisher like Marvel or DC, yet once finding each other; they have made a point to keep working together. They found there band and its time to make music, as it were. A great and very recent example of this pattern can be found in the pairing of Mark Millar and Steve McNiven. Joining up on the Civil War Mega Event for Marvel, They followed that up with the HUGELY successful “Old Man Logan” centering around a now aged Wolverine, The pairing have found their stride and have become one of most successful creative team sales wise of the last decade. The Key to this is that THEY have seen it. So much so that the team of M&M are hitting the ground running with their own creator owned comic that is believed to start in March of 2010, printing through Marvels Icon imprint.

You also have guys like Brian M. Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming who made their mark with POWERS through Image comics, and have gone one to huge success as a pairing and found homes at Marvel, bringing POWERS with them. Each has gone on to do work with other creators however they never stopped working together as well.

This is the same with pairing of artist also. Teams like Michael Turner/Peter Steigerwald, Ed McGuiness/Dexter Vines, Jim Lee/ Scott Williams, and the lists go on with teams that have made a commitment to each other and through perseverance and TEAM WORK they have found success in the business. Moving from Independent/ Creator owned comics to work-for-hire at major publishers, and sometimes back again with continued success. WHY? Because they made a brand for themselves, and they stuck together in their work efforts. This gives Editors a package to look at. They have a book, and it needs and art team. They don’t have to find the next Quesada/Miki combo; they can just GO GET THEM, because they are a team. This is KEY behind the methodology of A.N.A. Comics. There are plenty of folks in this business who will promise you opportunities, use you to get THEIR foot in the door, and simply get your work and not pay you and move on once the job is done. When all that is done, where are you really? More times than not you are right where you were to start. That is not acceptable for us, and it shouldn’t be for you. You have to take action, and you need to connect yourself with people that either are already where you want to be, or they are going in that direction. It’s the strength of the creative team. A.N.A. Comics is all about support and development of solid creators. To help them find their Stan Lee for their own Jack Kirby and go out to change the comic scene forever.

At we have a forum set up to share your work, get critiques and grow as an artist. We also use this as a field to develop relationships within the industry. A.N.A. Comics itself is the result of the combined joining of Supreme Knight Studios, Floating Island Press, and Carbon Hallway Graphics & Production. Each was on their own, striving to put together comic books and other creative medium properties. We saw a similarity to our focus and made the commitment to go at this together. Taking the comic book production focus from all three of our studios, we combined to for A.N.A. Comics.

Creators have asked us about working with us or for us. Our business model is different then what most have seen. Really, it all come down to being committed. You have to be committed to be part of A.N.A. Comics. We aren’t in the position to take your creator owned book, drop thousands of dollars of our resources to print and advertise it in the hopes that it would either sell enough for us to recoup our investment or make all of us loads of money. Nor are we in the position to try to hold you financially accountable to the project.

Quite simply it should be said:

At A.N.A. Comics, creators don’t work FOR us, they work WITH us.

This TEAM focus has been the key to our success so far and we believe it will continue to be. All of our projects are handled with open, honest, strait forward communication that eliminates confusion and promotes production. The way we do business may not be the avenue you find best for your strides to make comics, and that is ok. Still I will run down some of the things we are doing here at A.N.A. Comics, and you can see for yourself what we do:


A.N.A. Comics offers creators, who already have their own web comic strips, the opportunity to submit to us, and if chosen, we would provide a website set up to hold your comic and feature your work. There is no out of pocket charge to the creator for this. There is a signed agreement and a commitment for regular production (at least one update a week) that would be required.

Currently there are Two webcomics running at and 2 more planned for 2011. Take a look and see if you would like to feature your own story in our web-comics area.


With 2010 A.N.A. Comics began what we hope to be an Annual tradition: A.N.A. COMICS PRESENTS: WE'RE INDY: Rise of the Independents #1!

This Annual Anthology featured 11 unique works from Independent creators in all genre of storytelling. A.N.A. Comics doesn’t ask for any financial commitment from the creators to have their work included, nor is any pay promised back to the creators. A release is signed allowing A.N.A. Comics the privilege to print the submitted story in the Anthology, while the creators retain complete ownership over their property. The goal is simply to showcase the wide range of great comics out there.

If you would ever wish to be included in a future printing, please keep an eye out for open submissions at in The BOARD

ADVERTISING OPPORTUNITIES: offers Indy Creators the opportunity to purchase Ad space on our site. If you look around you’ll notice a header and a side bar advertisement. These are set up to cycle through different advertisers we have, changing with each click of the page. With thousands of visitors to our website, your ad would be viewed hundreds if not thousands of times. offers three packages for advertizing, broken down by how many times your add would appear in a month: 500/Ads for $5 – 1200/Ads for $10 – or Unlimited Ads for $20 a month. All packages are offered in 3, 6, or 12 month increments. Our super saver package is Unlimited Ads for a FULL year for just $200.00. If you are interested in advertising with please email


We wouldn’t be much of a comics company without actual comic books. A.N.A. Comics first comic book was published October 2009.

BRETHREN: Beginnings marked the initial venture into physical comic book printing and also the start to the much anticipated creator owned project from A.N.A. Comics co-founder Anthony “ANMPH” Hary. A.N.A. Comics also has special Directors Cut Trade Paperback of Harijan, a sci-fi epic from the mind of A.N.A. Comics co-founder Nicholas P. Myers. This will be the first time his original mini-series is collected in one book, and it will contain a special interview with the creator along with never before seen art and previews of what is to come! We are very excited about that.

Along with other projects in the works, A.N.A. Comics is working on the completion of a special Charity benefit Swimsuit issue that is set to have the profits benefit Breast Cancer research. All the characters in the book, both men and women, will be characters from A.N.A. Comics & other creator owned indy characters. Making this book not only an awesome way to support a great cause, but also an unique opportunity to get to know characters from within the different worlds of A.N.A. Comics and the Independent world of comics that you may not have had otherwise.

We are always open to creators that would be looking for a home for their project. We have already started discussions with a couple creators and it’s great to see who else is out there. Similar to our other ventures, we do not ask for any financial commitment from creators we team up with, rather we set up a complimentary relationship that helps the creator establish a brand and reach out to a wider audience then they may have been able to on their own.

A.N.A. Comics recently had the pleasure of having Daniel Woolley's HENCHMAN join the A.N.A. Comics fold. With Indyplanet currently showing issue #1 available for purchase!


Things to know, A.N.A. Comics is a family based company. Outside of our annual anthology, or special creator owned books, we have no intention to produce products or stories with content that would be above what is typically allowed in a PG13 film. Our commitment is to stories, quality stories, and to keeping them free of fluff or any sort of gratuitous content included simply for the sake of doing it. If your property contains heavy gore, nudity, swearing, or offensive content, we are not who you are looking to work with, as we as a group feel those elements are not necessary at such an excessive level to tell a quality story, but rather they hurt your story.

We’ve considered a lot today. We have looked over how A.N.A. Comics goes about the business of making comics. How will YOU make your comic? Will you work for someone else, or do you have the commitment and dedication to make your dream happen all on your own. There is not one path that is better than the other. You simply have to know which path is for you. Please feel free to visit The BOARD forum at and talk to us, share work, and bounce ideas around. We are here to help, and build up the Indy side of comics.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Wild & Wonderful Wednesdays

Here is the comic release list for your local direct retailer for WEDNESDAY - OCT 20

25 to Life #2
Amory Wars KSOSE 3 #5
Archie #614
Azrael #13
Batman and Robin #15
Batman Beyond #5
Betty & Veronica DD #185
Boys Highland Laddie #3
Brightest Day #12
Bruce Wayne TRH Catwoman #1
Bruce Wayne TRH C. Gordon #1
Calling Cthulhu Chronicles #4
Carnage #1
Chaos War #2
Conan the Cimmerian #24
Daredevil #511 SL
Darkwing Duck #5
DC Universe Legacies #6
DCU Halloween Special 2010 #1
Deadpool #28
DMZ #58
Doctor Solar Man of Atom #3
Doctor Who Ongoing #16
Donald Duck & Friends #359
DV8 Gods and Monsters #7
Fables #99
Farscape Ongoing #12
Gen 13 #38
Ghostbusters Holiday Special
GI Joe a RAH #159
Green Hornet PL #4
Green Hornet Year One #6
Green Lantern Corps #53 - BD
Guarding the Globe #2
Halo FORBC #2
Haunt #10
Hellblazer #272
Hulk #26
Ides of Blood #3
Image Firsts Mage #1
JP Murder of King Tut #5
JM Dead Soldier #2
JLA #50
Kick-Ass 2 #1
KODT Black Hands 2010 #1
Last Unicorn #5
Legion of Super Heroes #6
Logans Run #4
Loki #1
Morning Glories #3
Muppet Show #11
New Mutants #18
Night o/t Living Dead #1
Off HandbookMU A to Z #4
Pilot Season 7 DFH#1
Power Girl #17
Punisher Max TUWorld #1
Ragman Suit of Souls #1
Ratchet and Clank #2
Shadowland Power Man #3 SL
Simpsons Comics #171
Sixth Gun #5
Skullkickers #2
Soulfire Vol Two #8
Spirit #7
Stan Lee Soldier Zero #1
Stand Hardcases #4
ST Captains Log Jellico (one shot)
Stargate Vala Mal Doran #4
Steve Rogers Super-Soldier #4
Supergirl #57
Superman Batman #77
Tales of the Dragon GITV#2
Telara Chronicles #2
Thor First Thunder #2
Thousand Arts One Shot
Tiny Titans #33
Tony & Cleo #2 & 3
Transformers Drift #4
True Blood #4
Turf #3
UC New Ultimates #4
V.Price Presents #21 & 22
Walking Dead #78
WS Presents Tek War #8
WS Quest for Tomorrow #1
X-23 #2
X-Factor #210
X-Files 30 Days of Night #4
Alice the 101st Vol 2
Amory Wars KSOSE 3 TP
Astro City the DA Book 2 HC
Blab World Vol 1 HC
Black Butler Vol 3
Blood Rose Easter 1916 GN
C. Sakura DH Omnibus Vol 1
Charles Burns X GN
Chi Sweet Home Vol 3
Classics Mutilated MMPB
Daniel X Manga Vol 1
DC + Year by Year Chronicle HC
Dragon Girl Vol 1
Dragon Puncher Book 1 HC
Essential Avengers Vol 3
Farscape Uncharted Tales Vol 1
FC Legion of 3 Worlds TP
GPC Doubles the Spider Vol 17
Green Hornet Chronicles SC
Hardy Boys NC Files Vol 1
Heart Transplant
Hellblazer India TP
Henry & Glenn Forever GN
Hero Tales Vol 4
Higurashi When they Cry Vol 9
HJ Ward HC
Horror Comics Didn't Want You
Hulk Vol 5
Hulk Vol 6 HC
Imagination Manifesto Vol 1 HC
Johnny Boo Vol 4 HC
Kevin Smiths Green Hornet Vol 1
Kingyo Used Books Vol 2
Luthor HC
March Story Vol 1
Marvel Her-oes TP
Marvel Zombies 5 HC
M. of H. Suzumiya Vol 7
M. of S. Haruhi Chan Vol 1
NU 20th Century Boys Vol 11
Night School Vol 4
Nightmare World Vol 2
Omamori Himari Vol 1
Pandora Hearts Vol 3
Picture This HC
P. Superpowers Chapte r2 Vol 2
Saga of Rex TP
Showcase Superman Vol 1
Sin City Vol 1
Soul Eater Vol 4
Spawn Origins Vol 2 HC
Spider-man Gauntlet Vol 3
Spider-man Grim Hunt HC
Superman Archives Vol 8 HC
Sweeter Side of R Crumb SC
Thor vs Hercules TP
Tokyo Underground Vol 2 HC
UD Love Revolution Vol 2
UCs Avengers C&PHC
Vagabond Vol 33
Vampire Knight Official FB
Victorian Undead TP
Wrong Place GN
WWE Heroes Vol 1
X-Factor Vol 9
X-Men Forever Vol 5
Y the Last Man Vol 4 HC
Zombie Loan Vol 10
Zombo Can I Eat You Please TP
Zorro Matanzas TP
2000 AD Pack Sep 2010
CSN #1218 - FREE!
Doctor Who #426
Dodgem Logic #4 & 5
Fangoria #298
Locus #597
Torchwood #23 Special
CM Figs - Gladiator
CM Figs - Grim Reaper
CM Figs - Annihilus
CM Figs - Drax Destroyer
Clem Lemon Plush
DC Dynamics GL Statue
DC Figs - Black Lightning
DC Figs - Cosmic Boy
DC Figs - Jonah Hex
DC Figs - Mr Freeze
Domo Party Lights
Guillotine Model Kit
Kick Ass Hit Girl 12" AF
Peanuts Snoopy Fig Set
Pez Snow White Set
SW Figs - R2D2
SW Figs - A. Ackbar
SW Figs - Darth Maul
SW Figs - Chewbacca
SW Figs - AT-TE
SW Figs - Sandcrawler
SW Figs - Tank Droid
SW Figs - T16 Skyhopper
SW Lightsaber Chopsticks
SW Logo Bookends
Vampiresmarts CG
WOZ Flying Monkey Statue
And much more!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Cancer Initiative - A.N.A. Comics 2010 - Fighting Breast Cancer

October 15th, 2010

Many are already aware that A.N.A. Comics is working on producing a special swimsuit pin-up comic book, with profits from the book being donated to Breast Cancer Research. This is an all volunteer process. From the Artists to the Editor, no one is being compensated monetarily for their contributions to this project, which now has a 2011 projected release date.

From working on the A.N.A. Comics Swimsuit Charity book we have become more aware of the statistics around those with cancer. It has been an eye opening experience, and it got us thinking.

It is our pleasure to announce that A.N.A. Comics will donate a percentage of its profits on every project towards Breast Cancer Research going forward!

And we mean EVERYTHING. If you see one of the A.N.A. Comics founders at a Comic Convention or Event & you pick up copies of any A.N.A. Comics book, print, or other merchandise a portion of the profits made form that sale will be donated towards Breast Cancer Research. This can also include purchasing of original art, commissions, and private sales.

To kick it off, Anthony Hary, current Editor in Chief & VP of Brand Management will be at MCBA FallCON ( ) this Saturday, October 16th from 10am to 4pm. He will have original art, prints, calendar posters, books & more for sale, along with doing Con-Sketches and taking commission orders. A portion of all profits from this show will be donated towards Breast Cancer Research.

Please, take a moment to spread the word and support A.N.A. Comics. Support the fight against breast cancer. We can all make a difference!

Make It Happen!!!


Monday, October 11, 2010

A.N.A.Comics' Co-Founder/EIC to be at FallCON

Hey Everyone, Anthony ANMPH Hary checking in. Its been a while, so lets get to it!

This Saturday is the One Day Wonder - FallCON!! I will be there with 11x17color prints for sale, original art, books, and I will also be doing sketches all day for just $20!! You may remember the announcement made that the MCBA made SpringCON thier big 2 day show, and reduced FallCON to the more personal single day event. So dont miss out on the fun and mayhem this saturday. Below is all the info as of today, give it a read, pass it around, and make a point to be at FallCON this Saturday, Oct. 16th, open from 10am to 4pm!!

FallCon 2010 Update
Hello Everyone!
The date for FallCon is quickly approaching! Yes, it’s the MCBA 2010 FallCon Comic Book Party at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds, coming up on Saturday, October 16!
The all-volunteer, not-for-profit, Midwest Comic Book Association has been hard at work putting together the fantastic event we call FallCon, aka “The One Day Wonder!” You’re invited to participate and we really hope you’re able to make it! In addition, we hope that you’ll consider inviting your friends and family to attend FallCon as well. Over the past few years our community has grown significantly larger and it’s been a lot of fun to be part of the excitement!
As always, there’ll be a lot to see and do at FallCon! It’s great way to spend a Fall day with your family & friends! So please plan to come early and stay late!
Saturday – October 16 – 2010 – 10AM to 4PM at the centrally located Minnesota State Fairgrounds! In the Progress Center! It’s all true! Once again, the MCBA FallCon is returning to the 45,000 square foot Minnesota State Fair Progress Center. This spacious, historical building provides enough room for all of the extreme comic book action to take place under one roof, in one giant room!
Jumpin’ Joe’s Charity Booth/Rummage Sale!For the second consecutive year, the MCBA will be having a Charity Booth/Rummage Sale. 100% of the proceeds will be donated to our two charities, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and the Minnesota Lupus Foundation, and this year we’re inviting you to help out! Click to find out how YOU can participate!
MCBA FALLCON 2010 Guest List as of Today!
MCBA FALLCON 2010 Dealer List as of Today!
* UNUSUAL DISPLAYS will be found throughout FallCon this year! Make sure you circulate throughout the whole building–otherwise you might miss something new and exciting!* FREE PARKING! Follow the signs when entering the fairgrounds via the Snelling Avenue main entrance.* FREE GRAB BAGS to the first 500 FallCon Attendees on Saturday!* FREE Creator Autographs!* ONCE AGAIN, the MCBA will be supporting three charities at FallCon. They are the Minnesota Lupus Foundation (, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund ( and the Minnesota Food Shelves.* THERE WILL BE an ATM in the building, located near the front entrance.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Wild & Wonderful Wednesdays #7

Listing of new comics & other goodies coming out this week to your local direct market retailer. Check with your local store to pick up yours. Any with a ** next to it are titles we enjoy at A.N.A. Comics

$1.00 Hellboy Seed of Destruction
$1.00 Usagi Yojimbo
Age of Heroes #4 (of 4)
Air #24
Amazing Spider-Man #640 **
Angel #36
Archie #612 **
Atlas #4
Authority Lost Year #12
Avengers & I Gauntlet #1
Avengers Academy #3
Azrael #11
Batman Beyond #3
Batman Streets of Gotham #15 **
Boys Highland Laddie #1
Buffy One Shot Bulletproof Coffin #3
Cavewoman Toy Story OS CBGB #2
Chew #12
Comic Book Guy #2
Darktower Gunslinger JB #4
Darkwing Duck #3 **
DC Universe Legacies #4
Deadpool #26
Deadpool Corps #5
Dr. Who Ongoing #14
Donald Duck & Friends #357
Dragon Age #3 **
DV8 Gods & Monsters #5
Ex Machina #50
Fables #97
Farscape Ongoing #10
Finding Nemo LD #2
Free Realms #12 (of 12)
GI Joe Cobra II #7
GI Joe Origins #18
Gold Digger #120
Grotesque #2
Hellblazer #270
Hellcyon #3 (of 4)
Hulk #24 **
Ides of Blood #1
Image United #3 (of 6) **
Interiorae #4
JP Witch & Wizard #4
JSA #42 - BD
Last Phantom #1 **
Light #5 (of 5)
Lone Ranger #23
MU VS Punisher #2 (of 4)
Mediterranea #1
MGM Drive In Theater #2
New Avengers #3 **
New Mutants #16
Niger #3
Off MU Handbook #3
Pale Horse #3 (of 4)
Pals N Gals DD #144
Phoenix Without Ashes #1
Power Girl #15 **
Rotten #7
Sammy the Mouse #3
Secret Avengers #4
Shadowland Daughters #1
Shadowland Power Man #1
Shield DC #1
Simpsons Comics #169
Sixsmiths #1
Sixth Gun #3
Skeleton Story #1
Star Trek BOK #3
SR Super Soldier #2
Supergirl #55
Sweets #2 (of 5)
Thunderbolts #147
Tiny Titants #31
Transformers Nefarious #6
True Story Swear TG #13
Uncanny X-Men #527
Very Zombie OS
Web of Spider-Man #11 **
WW Of Jack Staff #4
Witchblade Due Process OS
Wolverine Weapon X #16
X-Files 30 Days of Night #2
X-Force #28 - 2nd Print
X-Force S & V #2 (of 3)
Zornster #898

Bad Kids GTH TP
Boris Karloff TOM Vol 3 HC
Bride of the Water God Vol 6
Buffy TVS Vol 2 Novel
Dark Rain HC
Deadworld Classic TP
E. Captain America V2
Hack/Slash Omnibus Vol 1
Hell City TWDT TP
Hodge the Hedgehog HC
Jersey Gods Vol 3 TP
Killapalooza TP
Loosely Based GN
Marvelman Vol 1 HC
Mice Templar Vol 2 TP ****
Muppet Show Vol 4 TP
Phanton Jack GN
Philosopher Rex GN
PS238 Vol 8 TP
Reading With Pictures GN
Rebels Vol 2 TP
San Fran Panorama TF
Seedless OGN
Showcase Doom Patrol Vol 2
Siege Thor HC
Spider-Woman HC
Transformers Armada OB
Unsinkable Walker Bean
X-Factor SC HC

CSN #1209 - FREE!
Comic Buyers Guide #1670
Iron Man #3
Locus #595
Mad #505

Batman Red Hood Maquette
Gotham City Statue Part 3
Legends of Marvel T/C
Marvel Phoenix Statue
Marvel Dark Phoenix Statue
Star Wars Luke Figure
Star Wars Anakin Figure
Super Soldier Poster
SW Darth Maul Bank
When Worlds Collide Model
And Much More!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Swimsuit issue looking for contributors

ATTENTION CREATORS: A.N.A. Comics 2010 Breast Cancer Charity Swimsuit book
Hey Everyone!
Do you have a property you would like to get more exposure? A.N.A. Comics is publishing a swimsuit comic book whose profits will be donated to benefit Breast Cancer Research. We are happy to announce we are opening the doors for a select few creators to donate their creator owned character to the book.
Here are the details:
A.N.A. Comics 2010 Breast Cancer Swimsuit comic book
Room for 10 Creator Owned Illustrations – submissions due August 31st 2010
Book will be printed in Color – If you want your illustration printed in color, YOU have to color it.
Cost for having your Character included: $0.00
All Illustrations must be approved to be included (No Nudity, Extreme Graphic violence or language)
Release Authorization must be submitted and signed by Intellectual Property Owners to have story included.
Approved submission entries have to be turned in to A.N.A. Comics, formatted and ready for printing by August 31st 2010 - The Format specifications can be found here:
Email submissions to :
Book is scheduled to be available through by October 2010.
Ad space is available for $15/half page or $25/full page Advertisement.

Release Authorization – A.N.A COMICS (must fill out completely)
Name of your Character: ______________________________
Intellectual property Owners name/s: ________________________________________
Signing this Release I recognize and Authorize the follow terms:
- I am the owner of the above listed Character/Property
- I Authorize A.N.A. Comics to print my Character Illustration in the 2010 issue of A.N.A. Comics Swimsuit issue, alongside other independent properties.
- I understand by signing this release I am in NO way assigning rights or agreeing to share IP copyright or trademark ownership & I retain full ownership of my property and the ability to reprint my Illustration in any other format I should chose.
- I understand A.N.A. Comics is not obligated to compensate me in anyway.
- I understand I will be able to order copies of the publication for my own personal use, sales, or private distribution for 5% over cost through A.N.A. Comics (aprox: $10.00per book)
- I authorize A.N.A. Comics to utilize my Illustration to publicize the publication provided that all due credit will be listed clearly for myself as owner.
- I understand that A.N.A. Comics will be printing, promoting and distributing copies of this publication online, at comic conventions, art shows, in comic book direct market shops.
- I agree and understand that I can in no way sue for monetary compensation or seek legal action against A.N.A. Comics as I entered this project of my own discretion.
Name of Copyright owner: __________________________________________________
-fill out below info for credits area inside the publication-
Name: _______________________________________ Date:_______________________
Name: _______________________________________ Date:_______________________
Name: _______________________________________ Date:_______________________
Company/Studio: __________________________________________________________
website: _________________________________________________________________
Address: _________________________________________________________________
City/State: ______________________________________ Zip Code: _________________
Signatures :_______________________________________________________________

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Join the Rise!!


Many of you may be aware A.N.A. Comics released in May We’re Indy: Rise of the Independents #1. If you haven’t checked it out you can order a copy for yourself for just $10 through


With the great response we have received so far, A.N.A. Comics is excited to announce our plans to have issue 2 put together for Fall of 2011. The whole point to this project is to help showcase the awesome work being done by Independent Creators throughout the comic book industry. If you would like to be a part of our next book, here are the details:

We’re Indy: Rise of the Independents #2
approximately 60 pages
Black & White interior

We’re looking for Writers or full creative teams to submit their Creator Owned property to the project. Each team can only submit ONE property, and the stories need to be between 8 and 12 pages total. You MUST be the owner of the property to submit it for consideration. You will be required to sign a release form granting A.N.A. Comics permission to print your property. Owners retain 100% ownership of their property. A.N.A. Comics assumes no rights or liabilities regarding your intellectual property beyond the written permission to include it in the Anthology.
You will NOT be paid, nor will you be charged to participate. A.N.A. Comics is simply interested in helping you to promote your project.

Creators included in the project will have the opportunity to purchase copies of the Anthology at 5% over cost, to sell at shows and distribute to their fans however they see fit.

For those Writers who do not have complete creative teams but a story they would like to submit, we encourage you to do so. A.N.A. Comics is interested in helping talented Writers get the attention they deserve. We have 3 slots set aside specifically for Writers in this position.

More info as it develops, we look forward to hearing from you.

Anthony ANMPH Hary
VP of Brand Management/EIC

Friday, April 30, 2010

Free Comic/Sketch offer!!

Follow Up Friday – FCBD

Who’s ready for one of the best days of the year? I am! That day is Free Comic Book Day and it takes place this Saturday at your local comic retailer, will you be there?

Source Comics & Games…

This Saturday I will be at the BEST Comic Book Direct retailer in Minnesota! The doors at Source Comics & Games at 10am. Come on by and pick up your share of the thousands of comics that will be handed out for free to fans! I’ll be there doing sketches for just $5, talking with fans and I’ll have original art for sale.

Also as part of Free Comic Book Day my production company will be making available, to all interested, the opportunity to get a FREE Digital copy of BRETHREN: Beginnings. It will be available exclusively through Saturday and Sunday. Follow me on twitter or just be sure to visit Saturday morning for all the info.

You Can’t Make it…

In the case that you aren’t able to make it to the show, but you wish to get a $5 sketch, you are able to order them Saturday and Sunday via

Sketches are $5 per Character, It can be ANY fictional character you want, and ALL Sketches ordered now through Sunday will be complete & in the mail by next Friday, May 7th 2010.

Just click the link below and send in your order.

How many characters

You all have a great weekend! See you next week!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Stephen Lindsay Interviewed!

Stephen Lindsay writes 10,000 comics a month. Best known for his Jesus Hates Zombies series from Alterna, he is the kinda guy who gets things done, with style. Richard Caldwell has enjoyed Stephen's comics for a long time, so this interview was a kick in the pants. Read it.

Stephen, thanks for sharing your notes with the readers. I understand that you dabbled in movie making before. With your having hit so many different genres in comics, did any of the books or characters begin life intended originally for film? Or are your creations medium-specific?

I have a comic in the works called Being Super which is about a support group for over the hill heroes (and one reformed villain) who are losing their powers or just don't feel very super anymore. That one started out as a short film of the same name that I made for a national competition called The 48 Hour Film Challenge. Truth be told, the film, while a TON of fun to make, kinda sucked. That's just the nature of only having 48 hours to write, direct, edit, score and finalize an 8-11 minute film! But taking it into the comics medium has allowed me to really play with the characters more.
Other than that, the comic characters have pretty much stayed separate from the film characters, and I think the main reason is that independent filmmaking is very, very limiting. You're constantly held in check by budgetary constraints. So something may seem really cool when you're writing a screenplay, but if you plan to make that film yourself, you're always thinking "I'll never be able to afford this, or to even find a creative (and cheap) way around it. So I guess I'd better scrap it." And eventually that thinking becomes so ingrained that those cooler elements don't even make it into your scripts. Comics, on the other hand, are limited only by your imagination. You can do ANYTHING! As a writer, it's very freeing, and you still get that rush of seeing your creation come to life. Only instead of actors breathing that life into your characters, it's an artist doing it. I love that!

What was your first published comic book work? And what were the circumstances that led up to it?

My first published work was the anthology Jesus Hates Zombies: Those Slack-Jaw Blues.

I was originally doing a serious zombie survival drama called After the Rising which had started life as a screenplay, then an abandoned novel. Once I decided I wanted to make comics, I began taking what I'd written as a novel and adapting it for comics. But about mid-way through the first script I discovered The Walking Dead and realized that zombie survival drama comics had hit their peak- it just doesn't get better than The Walking Dead. So I decided I better switch gears.
Looking over the zombie comics at the time, none of them had really gone the comedy route. Most were gore-fests with little else going on. So I knew I wanted to make mine a comedy. And being a fan of old B Movies, the first thing I wanted to come up with was a really killer B Movie title. That's when Jesus Hates Zombies popped into my head. It literally made me laugh out loud, but I didn't know if it would end up being a one-note joke. So I started writing it and realized it had some legs. The only problem was, when you're a nobody writer who can't afford to pay page rates, getting an artist on board for a full book is really, really hard. BUT, if you can find talented artists who are hungry to get their work shown, convincing them to do a five page story ISN'T as hard. So that's what I did. I networked online on a site called telling every artist who would listen about this anthology I was putting together. And to my surprise, a bunch of them were into it! So the stories were being written, the artists were sending me pages, and it was awesome! That was such an exciting, creative time! Every day felt like Christmas when I would check my email and find new pages pouring in from artists all over the world!! That was when I started my daily regiment of heavy online promotions. I went onto as many comics, horror, and zombie-related bulletin boards as I could find and talked up the book. And it was working! People were into it! At that point I was planning on self-publishing the thing by taking pre-orders and paying for the printing with them. And I did that for the first fifty books. It was at that point that I started talking to Alterna Comics. They were into the book, but a little apprehensive at first. It didn't take long for them to just say "To hell with it! Let's see how this thing does if we put it out!" And the rest, as they say, it history.
Long story short, I hit comicspace at the right time with a catchy idea that a lot of really talented artists
were into...I got lucky as hell!

And that has lead you to more Jesus Hates Zombies stories, as well as other collaborations with those collaborators. With so many projects going at once, do you see an end to your Jesus Hates Zombies series? And has there really been that much negativity thrown at you because of the content?

The 'Zombie' portion of Jesus Hates Zombies is coming to an end with the publication of Volume 4 in May. But that doesn't mean that the adventures of Jesus and Lincoln won't be continuing on! And, to be honest, I haven't really caught any flak over the series. I think the reason is that I'm still indie enough to fly below the radar of any groups that would get a real hate on for the books. So I've dodged that bullet thus far. Not that I wouldn't mind a little controversy or a nice theological discussion about the books! Hell, I was an altar boy for several years back in my Catholic School days! I can dish the religious with the best of 'em!

Oh, I was raised so Roman Catholic we only attended Latin masses until I was in my early teens or so. So I can relate. But thankfully folks have been giving you a chance, at least enough for you to have all of these other books in effect. The webcomics you host at your site alone- where do you find the time? Has it gotten easier for you to wear so many hats, or is there still a struggle, in getting your work out there and finding audiences for it?

The popularity of Jesus Hates Zombies has definitely made it easier to find an audience for my other work. But along with that comes an obligation to make that work the highest quality I can. Getting people to check something out is one thing. Getting them to stick with it is another thing entirely! Personally, I think I do my best work when I've got several projects going at once. It helps all of them feel fresh. If I was only working on one book, I think I'd get bored with it. But when I've got several books and three webcomics going at the same time, it's much easier for me to stay interested in all of them! And I've gotten better over the last few years of knowing when I've hit my limit. If I take on too many projects at once, then the work can suffer. So there's a balance to it. When I hit that sweet number of projects to juggle, that's when things really click!

You have collaborated the most with artists Lauren Monardo and Daniel Thollin, each on JHZ as well as The Slightly Askew Adventures Of Inspector Ham And Eggs with Lauren, and Happy Panda Funtime Show and Vaempir Testament with Daniel. In your experience, is there a fine line between business arrangement and all-out creative alliance? And as an experienced creator, do you prefer now these longer-term collaborations, or does it rely entirely on the individual?

I think you go into each project hoping for an all-out creative alliance. But sometimes it just doesn't progress beyond being a business arrangement. I've been very lucky to work with such amazingly talented people like Lauren and Daniel, and now also Jim McMunn and Dave Myers.
What happens when, as a writer, you click with an artist is that aside from simply the joy you get from working with them, a very high degree of trust evolves. And when that trust is a two way street, then the all-out creative alliance is formed. So when I'm writing something for Lauren, Daniel, Jim or Dave, I know they're going to totally get what I'm trying to do. I know that they're going to send me back work that exceeds the meager words I've put down on the page. I never have to worry about whether they're going to 'get it'. And I think, conversely, they know that I'm going to write to their strengths and that I have complete faith that they're going to do what best serves the story. I'm not the type of writer who insists 100% that an artist follows my panel layouts or scene descriptions. If the artist feels that a page would be better served with five panels instead of seven and they can combine a few to make it flow better, I'm all for it! But the freedom for them to do that and to know that I'm going to be totally cool with it comes from that built up trust. And when you've got it between you...making comics can be one of the most fun experiences on the planet!

Nowadays, small press and indie writers really do need to multi-task, like producers. You yourself have done a bit of lettering and packaging. Were these things that were difficult for you to get into, or does it just add to the overall fun, the immersion into the work?

Getting into the lettering was actually fairly easy. I love having that final pass at the writing that lettering affords me. And, I often tweak dialogue based on the art. So yeah, it definitely adds to the fun and immersion into the work. The other things, like packaging and logo creation come from the fact that I'm a graphic designer by day. So again, it was a fairly easy thing for me to get into.

You actually designed and maintain your own proper website as well, right?

Yes. I'm not exactly a whiz when it comes to the back-end workings of web development, but I do know HTML and would rather have that level of control over my sites than to use a template or a service. It just allows me to do whatever I want to do without any constraints.

So how do you kill your free time? What beyond funny books interests you?

Free time? What the hell is that! Aside for working and comics, I'm married and I have two kids. So the time not spent working in one form or another is usually spent with my family. But I'm also a total movie buff. I love all manner of flicks, so I'll watch just about anything. And I read as much as I can, too. Oh, and I'm also working on my first novel which will be published in Spain sometime next year (hopefully it'll be published in the US at some point as well).

Congratulations on the novel! What other projects do you have coming up, other than the aforementioned webcomics in progress?

Jim McMunn and I have the first issue of a 4 issue mini series coming out in May called "The Devil's Trail". It's a supernatural Western and new publisher Creators Edge is putting it out. Dave Myers and I (along with colorist Freddy Lopez) are currently shopping around an all-ages book called "Warriors of the Dharuk". That one is along the lines of a Mice Templar or Mouse Guard, and it's about a young koala who's a warrior in training that ends up in the midst of a fight to save his entire clan. I'm also working on a horror book with artist Michael Montenat called "The Tipper Ripper". It's a fairly psychotic book that's loads of fun!

The Devil's Trail especially sounds like a boatload of fun. Any final words you'd like to share, before I let you jump back ever so eagerly into the salt mines- for readers or fellow creators?

For fellow creators, just keep doing what you're doing! With the wave of digital comics growing bigger and bigger, it's a terrific time for all of us to carve out our niche. There's plenty of room on the shelves, the internet, mobile devices and in whatever comes along next for all of us. It's not about competing, it's about community. We can all grow as storytellers if we all stick together!

And for the readers, you've all got my most heartfelt thanks. Without you, I wouldn't be realizing a dream by doing th

Follow Stephen's work on comicspace, facebook, myspace, and twitter, but especially via his own website, captions and balloons.