** ATYPICAL COMICS ** 2015.02.01 TRANSMISSION **

Posted in Uncategorized on 02/01/2015 by gdwessel

[NOTE: I just sent this out on my new email newsletter thingy deal. You should subscribe to it as it’s probably going to be updated more than this blog.]

** GEOFFREY D. WESSEL ** ATYPICAL COMICS ** 2015.02.01 TRANSMISSION **

Hey gang. Forgot to do this last week. Had things going on. I still do, but here I am.

** PROJECT UPDATES **

Today saw me wrap up my essay on CEREBUS that I wrote for a book thingy hopefully coming out from Sequart. It wasn’t easy, let me tell you. It’s hard admitting to myself that, at age 42, I now never want to read, ever again, one of the series’ that affected me deeply enough to want to do comics. Not saying I’m abandoning Dave Sim entirely, as we’re still supposed to get THE STRANGE DEATH OF ALEX RAYMOND at some point, but I think the sun has set on my desire to read the aardvark. It’s still quite an accomplishment what Sim and Gerhard did. But I’ve read it in its entirity twice now. I think we’re good, yo.

The penultimate chapter of this serial of SYSTEM S.H.O.C.K. will be out tomorrow at Aces Weekly, as ever. Please take a look at it. There will be more soon.

In other news, despite spending over a year on a project, owing people money for it, signing contracts with people… I am having some real second thoughts about it now. The conversation I mentioned last letter, about non-genre work, has really kind of affected me, and a nudging gentle loving pisstake of the recent Image Expo announcements by Cameron Stewart has really stuck in my craw. To be honest, I’m not sure what I’m going to do. At all. I hate feeling like this.

Oh… and KEEPER Issue 4 will be delayed. Because Carlos Pedro is drawing ELEPHANTMEN #64 from Image Comics. No idea how long it’ll be pushed back tho. Still hoping for a Summer release…

** CULTURAL RAMBLINGS **

It’s Super Bowl Sunday, and for the first time this century I’m not watching it. Haven’t all season, if I’m honest. Personal and political reasons, mostly. The NFL is not an organization I want to support right now, even if I am still a fan of the sport, and one particular team. There are a multitude of reasons for this. Read the news.

I AM A CULTURAL NOSTRADAMUS. Last time, I waxed on about the manga BOKU NO HERO ACADEMIA by Kohei Horikoshi. Now, in tomorrow’s edition of Viz’s digital Shonen Jump, MY HERO ACADEMIA will
premiere. Seriously, get on board with this one. Been the #1 feature in Japanese Jump the last few weeks, and that is decided by democratic vote via reader surveys, so that’s not just hyperbole, it really is striking a chord with readers. Most sincere and earnest superhero stuff in yonks.

The majority of my last few weeks has been spent reading CEREBUS for that article, but I did find time to read Stephen Collins’ wonderful and award-winning THE GIGANTIC BEARD THAT WAS EVIL graphic novel. Liam loved it too, so, y’know. Everyone should read it. I’m currently a quarter of the way through THE WRENCHIES by Farel Dalrymple as well, and the lines and colors are just gorgeous in it. Hoping to make a proper start on THE PERIPHERAL soon too.

THE AMERICANS is back on TV for its third season, which pleases me greatly. There is a bit of fatalism to this series tho – we KNOW the Soviets will fail, and fall, in the end. This premiere episode just had a very brief blip about Leonid Brezhnev’s death, so Andropov and Chernenko won’t be far behind. I’m also starting to enjoy seeing all the actors from OZ propping up. Good stuff, check it ouuuuuut.

** WHERE TO FIND ME **

This is still more or less accurate. I’m creeping back onto Facebook, slowly but surely, but I don’t think it’ll ever be a full return. Anyway, here you are.

– Website: http://gdwessel.com
– Atypical Comics website: http://atypicalcomics.com
– Twitter: @gdwessel or @AtypicalComics
– Facebook: http://facebook.com/gdwessel
– Tumblr: http://gdwessel.tumblr.com
– Instagram: gdwessel
– KEEPER: http://keeper-comic.com

Til next week… watch the skies…

— Geoffrey D. Wessel

** ATYPICAL COMICS ** 2015.01.18 TRANSMISSION **

Posted in Uncategorized on 01/18/2015 by gdwessel
[NOTE: I just sent this out on my new email newsletter thingy deal. You should subscribe to it as it’s probably going to be updated more than this blog.]
** GEOFFREY D. WESSEL ** ATYPICAL COMICS ** 2015.01.18 TRANSMISSION **

I assume since I only got 5 unsubscriptions, but 5 replacement subscriptions, last week, that we are all good to go with what I have to say here. So, hi! I’m in a pretty giddy mood, since the football results went my way today. (That’s soccer, not NFL. I’ve actually not watched the NFL all season. For reasons. That I’ll get into some other time.)

** PROJECT UPDATES **

I just saw and approved the lettered art for the next installment of the third SYSTEM S.H.O.C.K. serial, that will go live on Aces Weekly tomorrow. You should get in on that. I’m sure David Lloyd, Neil Ford and Jim Campbell would appreciate it greatly too.

I should probably start writing the fourth serial, too.

But no, this week I will also be finally starting the essay on CEREBUS that I’ve blown off for months. However, that won’t be before I get to finally working up the umpteenth revision of M****. That is, the project I’ve been devoting a lot of my time to this past year. Which needs to be done because it’s just kinda stalled out, and someone I’d like to draw it has been waiting to see it. January has just been sluggish for me, and need to break out of that.

Indeed, a few days ago I had one of those FUCK IT ALL moments where I wanted to quit everything, mostly due to a) financial realities b) seething jealousy. I quickly got over it, of course. But everyone is due to have those moments, and this was my time. Life is getting past these moments, right?

I gotta get that Patreon up soon…

** CULTURAL RAMBLINGS **

Old Man Update Dept.: My daughter, Miranda, is 16 tomorrow. SIXTEEN. Ho-lee sheeit. She is amazing, every day in every way. She has overcome so much, and to be where she is academically and socially whilst also being on the spectrum is nothing short of greatness. I am so glad to have her, and have her with me. Happy birthday, Miranda Jane.

Going along with that, we had a bit of a party for her yesterday, at a video gaming place. Mostly girls in our group. All playing Mario Kart and Smash Bros. Not to mention, a whole family playing the indie arcade smash KILLER QUEEN. (Yes, Indianapolis has one of only 4 machines in existence. Check my Instagram for photographic evidence of this) So, Gamergate, go fuck yourselves in the worst possible way. For reals. Girls and women ARE part of gaming, whether you like it or not, and you’d best find a way to exist WITH them, or get left behind in the dust.

Not much reading done this week. I started THE PERIPHERAL by William Gibson, and I dig it so far. Most of my attention this week was given to catching up on the so-far-not-officially-released-in-English manga BOKU NO HERO ACADEMIA by Kohei Horikoshi, which debuted in the Japanese SHONEN JUMP this past June and has been burning up the charts ever since. And with good reason, too – it’s actual well-done FUN superheroics, the kind that have been sorely missing from mainstream American comics the last, oh, twenty years or so.

(I mean seriously, do we need ANOTHER analogue-ridden “deconstruction” of superheroes? I just read a preview of a series coming from Image that was in one of my weekly purchases, and I read it, and was just shaking my head the whole time. Why do we NEED this in 2015? What can you POSSIBLY say that hasn’t already been done twenty billion times already since the late 1980s? Just STOP IT STOP IT NOW)

But seriously, this stuff is fantastic and I wish Viz would bring it over officially so I don’t have to rely on illegal scanlations for this wonderfulness.

I also have been having some thoughts and feels about non-genre (or more to the point, non-SF/fantasy) indie comics this week, which started due to being dragged into a Twitter talk on where all the football comics have gone. Can’t imagine how I got brought in there, ahem ahem. But while it is true there used to be more diversity in newsstand or even comics on the shelves at direct market stores, there have been a ton more diverse graphic novels on the shelves of regular bookstores. Raina Telgemeier’s trio haven’t been burning up the NY Times bestseller list for nothing. Just to start.

At the same time, the regular, monthly, “floppy” books used to have more to it… a long time ago. I would love, for example, to do an extended book based on my OUTLAW TERRITORY 3 character, but there’s no way I’d ever sell it, because who gives two shits about Westerns that aren’t also Weird Western or Steampunk Western or Space Western or… yeah. Romance comics, remember those? Medical dramas? I don’t know. Maybe this is just rambling. But it seems that for all the talk of indie comics (read: Image and Dark Horse) being on the rise, it seems to mostly be SF or fantasy or horror or crime. Or, y’know. More superheroes.

I’m sure this discussion will come up again.

** WHERE TO FIND ME **

So I did this list, last week, but totally forgot about Tumblr, which, haha, I’ve pretty much abandoned too bar being a repeater of the blog and my Instagram. Maybe someone needs to train me in Tumblr because I seriously just don’t get it, and maybe I’m not meant to. Feel free to offer advice…

– Website: http://gdwessel.com
– Atypical Comics website: http://atypicalcomics.com
– Twitter: @gdwessel or @AtypicalComics
– Facebook: http://facebook.com/gdwessel
– Tumblr: http://gdwessel.tumblr.com
– Instagram: gdwessel
– KEEPER: http://keeper-comic.com

Anyhoo. Onward, til next week…

— Geoffrey D. Wessel

** ATYPICAL COMICS ** 2015.1.15 TRANSMISSION **

Posted in Uncategorized on 01/11/2015 by gdwessel

[NOTE: I just sent this out on my new email newsletter thingy deal. You should subscribe to it as it’s probably going to be updated more than this blog.]

** GEOFFREY D. WESSEL ** ATYPICAL COMICS ** 2015.01.11 TRANSMISSION **

Hello. If you’re reading this it’s for one of two reasons: you either

a) signed up for this list at http://tinyletter.com/gdwessel

OR

b) you signed a notepad asking you to register for the Atypical Comics mailing list at one of the comic book conventions I exhibited at in 2014, and I’ve just finally gotten around to setting it up.

If you don’t wish to remain, please click the link at the bottom of this email, it SHOULD send you to an unsubscribe page. If not, email me at gdwessel AT hotmail DOT com and I will gladly remove you. Because nobody likes having their Inboxes cluttered.

** PROJECT UPDATES **

Right now, the third serial of my political action thriller SYSTEM S.H.O.C.K. is currently running in Aces Weekly, the digital comics anthology run by David Lloyd (he of V FOR VENDETTA fame. He designed those masks you may see on TV or the internet from time to time). In fact, I just looked at the art for this week’s installment. It’s drawn by my good pal Neil Ford, and lettered by the one and only Jim Campbell. It’s basically the story of what happens when a group like Cobra or SPECTRE has a change of management. You should check it out. Seven issues worth of content in a volume for less than a tenspot (dollars, that is), and many legends of the artform take part in it. And me.

KEEPER Issue 4 has been written. Carlos Pedro has begun the art for it. I’m hoping to get it out before Summer. You can catch up on it directly from me in print or digital, or even on ComiXology. As well you should.

In the meantime, I just sent off an article for publication in Bleeding Cool Magazine, and in fact I have an interview I conducted (as interviewee, not subject) coming in the upcoming issue as well. I also have an essay I need to start writing about Parody in CEREBUS that I’ve already blown the deadline for three times now, for a book on the subject that’s being put together by Sequart. They’re a great group of people taking an academic tack towards popular comics criticism. Myself and a friend have a vague idea for a book proposal for them. Maybe we’ll get around to it one day.

All of this is peanuts compared to the project that I’ve been building for years now, and in the latter half of 2014 I was able to really get somewhere with it, up to and including professional editing and signing contracts with artists. Now I have to do the umpteenth rewrite on the vision for the series, and away we go. Stay tuned.

** CULTURAL RAMBLINGS **

Last night I finally managed to finish CONSUMED, the debut novel by David Cronenberg. I say “finally” because it was a bit of a slog. I’m really of two minds about it. On the one hand, it reads like the sort of novel David Cronenberg would come up with: cannibal murders, obscure STDs, body horror, a look at modern technology and society’s relationship with it. On the other hand, it also reads like someone who clearly has never written prose before. There was clunky description of action and setting that focused on such minutae that it makes you wonder if what we’re reading is important, before it veers off into something else and we never see it referred to again. To make matters worse, there was dialogue no human being on Earth would ever say. The ending read much like someone realizing they’ve met their contracted word count and then said “Well, time to end this.” The end result, sadly, was like a pastiche of William Gibson or Warren Ellis, written by a first-time storyteller. Which is a shame, because Cronenberg is hardly a novice storyteller, and is a master filmmaker, but, well, maybe better luck next time writing the novel.

I think I might be more annoyed about the novel than usual, because as I said this read like Gibson pastiche, and I have the real thing, THE PERIPHERAL (a Christmas gift from Bea) waiting for me. And the next four volumes of Naoki Urasawa’s 20TH CENTURY BOYS. And Satoshi Kon’s OPUS. And…

I also finished binge-watching HOUSE OF CARDS last night, finally catching up with the rest of humanity on that point. I like it, yet about halfway through the first episode of the second season, it just became REAL obvious where this was heading. Well, no moreso than it would have been had you watched the original British HOUSE OF CARDS. Which I have. Frank Underwood is no Francis Urquhart… or maybe it’s more like Kevin Spacey is no Ian Richardson. Still, the next season is coming in February. Maybe it’ll improve. Hope so. There’s other shows I need to catch up on…

** WHERE TO FIND ME **

Ostensibly, I’m doing this newsletter to start a more strategic withdrawal from most forms of social media, something I went into some detail about in my year-end blog post, so I won’t rewrite it here. Especially Facebook. But, all that said, here’s where else you can find me:

– Website: http://gdwessel.com
– Atypical Comics website: http://atypicalcomics.com
– Twitter: @gdwessel or @AtypicalComics
– Facebook: http://facebook.com/gdwessel
– Instagram: gdwessel
– KEEPER: http://keeper-comic.com

Most of those are very poor on upkeep. Indeed, my personal Twitter is really the only active one. Here, tho, I plan to bethe buzz buzz buzz in the drum of yer ear about once per week, maybe Sundays, maybe other days when the mood strikes me.

Now, I’m preparing to be entombed in ice, or so the weather fearmongers in Indianapolis say. Thanks for reading, hope you stick around for the next episode…

— Geoffrey D. Wessel

2014, Dead At Last: My Year In Review

Posted in Uncategorized on 12/31/2014 by gdwessel

Dear Gods, am I glad to see the end of this year.

I mean, seriously. Even tho, personally, once again, my family and I had a pretty OK year all things considered, 2014 really has been the year that evil won. If it didn’t become obvious, more than any other year in memory, that we truly do live in a police state, I’m not sure if it’ll ever be moreso. I could go on and on. Cops can kill Black people, man woman adult or child, in the streets, with impunity. Nothing will ever happen, and if you dare criticize, you’re a terrorist. On the heels of an election that saw the Right sweep, on the backs of racial hatred, fear of ISIS and Ebola, and a media that lapped it all up, America 2014 became the absolute worst country on the planet. Indeed, my family and I are discussing our exit strategy, as it’s clear it’s NOT going to get any better, and I’m done fighting that fight now. Scotland was looking promising, but then they fucked THAT up too. It’s looking like Germany is the winner at this point. By 2020 is my personal goal, but, as ever, we shall see.

Meanwhile, 2014 is the year my relationship with social media really hit the wall, especially in the last few months. To start with, I’ve decided I just cannot with Tumblr. I don’t get it, and after months of trying, it’s clear I’m not really meant to. So, I occassionally post pictures there, but that’s about it. I tried Ello, like everyone else did for about a week, and I’ve more or less forgotten about it since then. I barely ever blog at gdwessel.com or atypicalcomics.com (and then there’s DischargedComic.com which, when it comes time to renew all my domains, this one will be going away. DISCHARGED as an idea is dead, and Alwyn Talbot doesn’t even seem to be doing comics at this point. So, fare thee well DISCHARGED, 2011-2014. We tried.)

Facebook, meanwhile, turned into such a cauldron of drama and hurt feelings, especially in the wake of Ferguson, that I finally just had to shut it off. In fact, I switched phones during that time, and still have yet to install the app on it. I am not going to delete my account, however… YET. But since it’s become clear that my page can’t be used by ME to talk about what *I* want to discuss without it turning into a discussion about some random person from high school’s hurt feelings, then, I guess I’m just going to move my FB page into merely a hype page or repeater for blogs and newsletters (see below). Seriously, congratulations, you won. No longer will I regale you with news and opinions about things that happen outside your, or my, direct sphere of influence and experience. Considering I probably should have done this years ago when it was decided I couldn’t discuss my favorite book of all time without unleashing barking dogs telling me in great detail what an asshole Alan Moore is, then… yeah.

And let’s not be favoritist, here – Twitter has been getting it from me as well. I’ve unfollowed virtually everyone in Arsenal FC fandom over there because they’ve proven to be horrible people, and in the last few weeks I’ve been unfollowing about 10-20 people per day. As of this writing, my Folloing to Followers count is over -250, and I’m sure there will be more to come. Just… time to declutter.

With all that said, for the New Year, I just created a newsletter/mailing list type thingy, and I would highly advise you subscribe to it at http://tinyletter.com/gdwessel. Tho this might be one more thing to forget about in a matter of weeks, at least I can keep things concise over there, and it’s less hassle than blogging. Which we’ve determined I’ve just become bad at.

2014 was not ALL bad, however, of course. Watching the kids, all of them, grow into themselves and get closer to the “creatures that they’d always meant to be” (to steal a line from the Pet Shop Boys) has been mostly a joy, sometimes a pain in the ass. Our home life is pretty well and good, it must be said, tho we are starting to outgrow this place a bit. Everyone comes with their own challenges, and baggage, and that’s just life, working through it all and coming out the other side better for it…

Of course, KEEPER Issue 3 came out, and with a new art team. I end the year having spent considerable time at New York Comic Con in the company of the legendary David Lloyd (surrounded on all sides by Howard Chaykin, Walt & Louise Simonson and Geof Darrow as well), and earlier this week, SYSTEM S.H.O.C.K. returned to Aces Weekly, so, yeah, get on that.

And hey! A book I was in, got nominated for both an Eisner AND a Harvey. It won neither, but it was a bit of a thrill to have that happen. Hope it happens again, soon…

I’m in the midst of getting together my biggest project to date, and if you want more information about that in the coming weeks, get on the mailing list above.

I am also in the midst of getting together a Patreon page, as I think the time has come to stop doing everything COMPLETELY out of pocket. Stay tuned for that.

If I have one wish for 2015, it’s that everyone, EVERYONE, Be Better. Be more empathetic towards people who aren’t You. Learn their struggles, and points of view. Stop making everything about Yourself and Your Hurt Feelings when there are opportunities to learn about someone else’s pain. Hell, I was even guilty of that myself recently, and got rightly called on the carpet about it by a fellow pro. I didn’t think so at the time, but… it happened. I’ve also been quite guilty of seething jealousy, seeing fellow creators who I consider friends and contemporaries getting snatched up for books and projects at publishers while I still grind out what little I can do. Morrissey was right, we DO hate it when our friends become successful. But, I also know it’s not right, it’s not good, and …

All I can do is not do it again. So can you. Humans can learn. I’ve seen it happen.

With that said, tonight between us, the family will dine on toshikoshi soba, followed by us adult persons opening a bottle of Laphroaig to see in 2015. Tomorrow we watch New Year’s football fixtures and have the traditional corned beef & cabbage dinner. I do hope everyone reading this has a good New Year as well, wherever and whenever you celebrate it. Thank you to all my friends who have been there, and all my collaborators especially. We’ll kick more ass in the coming year together, I’m sure.

So, fare thee well, and fuck off, 2014. You won’t be missed.

KEEPER ISSUE 3 NOW ON COMIXOLOGY

Posted in Uncategorized on 07/02/2014 by gdwessel

Good evening.

I’ve just now learned that KEEPER Issue 3 is now on ComiXology. It’s a mere 99cents there.

It’s also still available direct from me at Atypical Comics.

Also also, there was a nice and fair review of the entire series last week at Women Write About Comics.

Go check them out.

KEEPER ISSUE 3 OUT NOW

Posted in Uncategorized on 06/24/2014 by gdwessel

Dear Readers:

KEEPER Issue 3 is NOW ON SALE.

In getting everything set up, I decided that rather than trusting PayPal to automatically do sales tax and shipping for print issues, KEEPER Issue 3, as well as Issues 1, 2, and TAKEDOWN, will be $5.00 postpaid for all print comics (KEEPER Issue 0 is $3.50). That’s $3.50 cover price + sales tax + shipping.

Digital is STILL tax free.

Issue 3 will be on ComiXology very soon.

Enjoy!

KEEPER ISSUE 3 OUT ON 6/11/2014

Posted in Uncategorized on 06/04/2014 by gdwessel

After a year between printed issues, and a change of art teams, the acclaimed sports-crime-horror thriller comic KEEPER is BACK with Issue 3, to be released in PRINT, *and* DRM-free CBZ/PDF digital sale, on WEDNESDAY, JUNE 11, 2014.

New artists Carlos Pedro (Pencils/Inks) and Steven Denton (Colors) join writer/creator Geoffrey D. Wessel and letterer Jim Campbell in continuing the bloody saga of Lewisham United goalkeeper Scott Winslow as he simultaneously wins the fans’ hearts on the pitch, and terrifies them as a vicious serial killer terrorizing the whole of England. This issue takes the story through the gritty
streets of East London, and the hallowed halls of justice, as Scotland Yard tries to piece together the killings.

Original series artist and co-creator Jeff Simpson remains with the book as cover artist, and the issue also features a pin-up by artist/reviewer Sarah Horrocks to round it out.

KEEPER Issue 3 will be available as a DRM-FREE CBZ/PDF for only 99 cents through Wessel’s Atypical Comics imprint, as well as via print for $3.75 (cover price $3.50 + Indiana sales tax) + $1.50 shipping within the US & Canada / $3.00 outside USA.

If you’ve never experience KEEPER before, please have a read at issues 0-2, all posted FREE at keeper-comic.com. You can even download Issue 0 FREE in either CBZ or PDF formats.

KEEPER is also available via ComiXology Submit, with Issue 3 now approved and awaiting release via the platform.

Please keep tabs on Atypical Comics via the website, or via @AtypicalComics on Twitter!

Enjoy the testimonials and preview pages below, and prepare yourselves for KEEPER Issue 3 coming NEXT WEDNESDAY, JUNE 11!

Al Ewing (2000AD, Mighty Avengers): “Patrick Bateman Of The Rovers – KEEPER is a sick, engrossing twist on the footy-strip form.”

Curt Pires (POP, Theremin): “KEEPER is a nihilistic and beautiful journey through the limits of compulsion, and the depravity of the human ID. Highest recommendation”

Ben McCool (Choker, Pigs): “Footie, a demented serial killer, and a bloody fun comic book. What’s not to love? Be sure to check out KEEPER!”

Alasdair Stuart (Bleeding Cool): “KEEPER does for football comics what DEXTER did for the Miami tourist community. A blisteringly smart, brilliantly brutal take on celebrity, sport and
murder, the only goals that get past it are the ones it lets past. Essential.”

Irvine Welsh (Trainspotting): “It’s excellent. The art work is terrific and a cool concept.”

Mark Waid: “Another digital comic worth checking out… tell them I sent you!”

Patrick Zircher (Shadowman): “Soccer player Scott Winslow in KEEPER is a very bad sport — in an entertaining way. Check it out.”

Rod McKie (Playboy, Wall Street Journal): “I haven’t seen anything in the West that compares with KEEPER…”

Comics Bulletin: “From Hell meets Fever Pitch… Jeff Simpson’s art looks very European, like something from Heavy Metal.”

Phil Hester (Firebreather, Wonder Woman, The Wretch): “Readers of KEEPER can count themselves lucky to be in on the beginning of a startlingly innovative writer’s career.”

Greg Rucka (Stumptown, Whiteout, Punisher): “KEEPER is remarkable comic storytelling, full of energy and menace. Wessel and Simpson have somehow managed to wed Jim Thompson noir with footy, and the result is terrifically entertaining and, frankly, profoundly disturbing. A terrific and dark ride!”

Ian Rankin (“Inspector Rebus” series): “Serial killers and football: quite the combination…”

Rob Williams (Low Life, Ghost Rider, Cla$$war): “KEEPER draws you into nostalgia for those Roy Of The Rovers, Tiger and Look-In strips of your childhood and then, with a shocking twist reveals itself to be something bloodier and far more thrilling.”

Jacen Burrows (Crossed, Neonomicon): “One of the more intriguing premises I’ve seen, I can’t wait to see where this sport horror hybrid goes. A solid beginning to what promises to be a mind bending thriller.”

Chris Arrant (Robot6/CBR): “KEEPER is a very strong piece of work with a very unique concept ripe for success.”





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