Friday, July 27, 2018

Cold Steel, Dark Arts, and comic books ~ a LOT of art in this entry~

Original painting (before digital enhancement) by Christian Martinez
From: Whispers of Persephone

It has been a very busy summer with me working to complete the formatting of The Steel Road, and getting the play test draft together for Whispers of Persephone.  I've also been coordinating work for a comic anthology project I'll be publishing in 2019 (once again we'll be using KickStarter to fund that printing).  So things have been very busy with me and Sinopa Publishing LLC lately!

The Steel Road:

Work on this project began more than a year ago and progressed nicely.  Things were going swimmingly and then my laptop died rather unexpectedly and in a fantastically thorough fashion. Long story short, I couldn't get my InDesign file to link to the image files again once I got a new computer system. This forced me to reformat the art for the book all over again (and YES, that cost me a lot of time).  I have been formatting text into the book for the last few weeks, and that has progressed nicely.  Presently, I have completed all but one region (the islands of the Pacific), and am very nearly done.  Great news is that The Steel Road is set to fulfill on time this August!

Lessons I've learned from this:  

1) Save the image files to your cloud after you've formatted them into your document so you can re-link them easily if your computer suddenly catches fire one day and you have to use a new machine.

2) Formatting text around an image and making it look good is a lot more time consuming than you might expect.  It is far easier to simply format blocks of text with reserved space allotted for your images.  That said, I think the text wrapping around the image looks far better.  So if you plan on doing this yourself, budget the time accordingly.

My thoughts on this project

The Steel Road was tremendously fun to research and write.  The KickStarter campaign was my most backed to date, and many of those backers have asked if I would be putting a second book with more weapons out.  I've spent a great deal of time formatting the text, revising the material and sweating the little things to create the best book I can for the backers and the RPG community at large.  I'm thrilled to put this book out and very grateful to Zachary Viola for all the fantastic sketch art he did to make the book possible.

Whispers of Persephone

I wrote this book's material by hand.  I'm hoping to format the complete play test file for the next round of play tests this weekend.  With Whispers of Persephone I'm going to send this file (which should have the page background art in it) to the entire play test group with just a little art in it.

Christian Martinez is doing fantastic work for this project, creating all original paintings (some of which will be available as backer rewards during the KickStarter campaign).  If you've seen his work in The Draw of Glenfallow or Comet over Echo Rock you're probably as excited as I am for this new art! 

Lessons I've learned from this project:

1) I took a different approach with regard to play test on this product.  I put the material in front of a handful of people rather than in front of the whole play test group.  This afforded me the opportunity to tweak a few points early on.

2) For Whispers of Persephone I want a LOT of art, but I had to calculate my art budget based on a smaller number of images.  I've decided to create stretch goals for additional art in the KickStarter campaign.  Content is key, after all, and art is incredibly important.  This project has been an excellent exercise in project budgeting.

My thoughts on this project

Whispers of Persephone was fun to write.  Presently I'm looking to the launch date for the KickStarter and working to coordinate the live stream event (more on that soon).  The book's mechanics and content are things I'm particularly proud of and I hope people will get much use and enjoyment out of this evil tome, this bloody little book of necromancy!  As I write this I'm plotting out the time line for the KickStarter launch.  This an incredibly exciting project that has been a long time in development (from the writing and design) and one that I am enjoying the thrill of receiving new art for!

Comic Books   

Yes, I blew the font up for this section.  I have some dramatic feelings on this topic, so stick with me. There are a lot of fantastic comic book creators working on titles I'll be releasing in 2019... check this out!

47 Furious Tails  

The first comic book I've ever written for publication.  Last year (2017) I tried and failed to fund this project through KickStarter.  This year (2018, if you're viewing this in the far future) I'll be relaunching this project, with more of the art done.  This first issue begins the retelling of the Ako incident in a unique way.  Alexia Veldhuisen has made tremendous efforts and I'm thrilled that she has continued to pursue this project with me.

Cover art by Alexia Veldhuisen
47 Furious Tails, Issue One

Untitled Comic Anthology project  

We're focusing on the book and will have a working development title in a few months.  Right now that's not the important part.  The IMPORTANT part, is the work going into this jewel of a book.

This book will have eight (8), yes EIGHT different contributing artists sharing their titles.  These are projects the artists and writers are very passionate about and it shows in the art they've produced so far.  Each of these contributors are producing eight pages of content to introduce everyone to the fine work they are doing.  I'm pleased to help bring the work of these talented professionals to the world. Art direction/edits by Alexia Veldhuisen.

I'll be launching a Kickstarter campaign in 2019 to fund the printing of this book. Below I have included samples of art from that project. I hope you'll enjoy it and look forward to that book.  Artists credited with the images, and most of them are available for commissions (follow the links in their biography pages for more information).

From the mind of Brian Lee
Art by Brian Lee
You can learn about Brian Lee and his art HERE!

From the mind of Colin Hartigan
Art by the legendary Christian Martinez
You can learn about Christian Martinez and his art HERE!

From the mind of Kelsy Cowan
Art by Kelsy Cowan
You can learn about Kelsy Cowan and her art HERE!

From the mind of Lotus Blair
Art by Lotus Blair
You can learn about Lotus Blair and her art HERE!

From the mind of Nick Caponi
Art by Nick Caponi
You can learn about Nick Caponi and his art HERE!

From the mind of Rebecca Coulthart
Art by: Rebecca Coulthart
You can learn about Rebecca Coulthart and her art HERE!

From the mind of Zachary Viola
Art by: Zachary Viola

You can learn about Zachary Viola and his art HERE!

We've assembled a great team for this project and I hope you will all look forward to some fantastic comic book material coming from these talented artists and writers!

{Legal stuff:  All art included on this blog is copyright of their respective creators and are used with the express consent of those same individuals.  All rights are reserved.}

So stick with me for more information on these and other titles that are presently in development.  2018 will continue to be busy as development for "Death comes to Glenfallow" is underway, and new titles will be seen coming out with more art from these artists and more!


Thank you for continuing this adventure with me!  I hope you'll join me again next time for more information on artists I'm working with, projects I'm exploring, games I'm developing, and mistakes I learn from as I continue to publish.

See you next time!

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