East Coast Dispatches: June 27, 2022
Deathstroke Day Approaches!
Table of Contents
• The Intro, Where I Promise To Keep Things Short and Fail Spectacularly
• Deathstroke Inc #10
• Upcoming Tour Info
• Project Updates
• Upcoming Releases
• I Know You’re Only Here for Lasagna
I’m writing to you all while still in my PJs. I’ve got a coffee in hand (my second, even though I swore I’d cut back to one a day) and much to do before the upcoming trip. Let’s see if I can keep this one short1.
The last couple of weeks have been interesting. A project I thought was happening, isn’t — at least not in the same form we initially thought it would. Another project has been delayed (which is somewhat of a relief, to be honest). More on projects below.
Other than work, I’ve been focussing on gardening a lot lately. It’s a fucking surprise to me, for sure. I have a hang-up where I can’t eat food if I see where it comes from2. So, growing food has always been somewhat…repulsive to me. I don’t know why, it just is. Maybe it’s because you have to deal with insects on your plants, and worms in your dirt (retches off-panel). In a move to get over it and face my fears, I’ve decided to grow a few things with the end goal of harvesting and cooking with them. I was hesitant at first, but have taken to it pretty intensely.
I’ve planted strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, eggplant, zucchini, butternut squash, peas, and roughly 10 varieties of peppers.
Every morning, I wake and do a quick tending to the garden. Pruning where needed. At night, I water what needs it. Every weekend, I fertilize most of the plants. I’m even attempting pest control, but have had to enlist my poor wife in this because I really, really, really hate bugs.3
I’ve been getting right into the soil with my bare hands, trying to build some connection to the plants I’m growing. At times, it can be stressful (pests have decimated one of the strawberry plants and a couple of the pepper plants are not growing4), but I don’t think I’ve felt this relaxed in years. I’m really enjoying the process. I’m normally not a terribly patient person and this is forcing me to slow down. There’s nothing I can do to speed up the process, I have to be content to be a custodian to the plants and guide and support them in their growth. But, once that growth has reached its end, I will take EVERYTHING from them and feast like Saturn devouring his sons.
Deathstroke Inc. #10
My very first series at DC launches this week!5
Deathstroke Inc. #10
Written by me, illustrated by Dexter Soy, coloured by Veronica Gandini, and lettered by Steve Wands. Cover by Mikel Janin.
In Shops: Jun 28, 2022
Slade Wilson’s blood-drenched past and exploits are well chronicled, but how did Slade become the infamous assassin and mercenary known as Deathstroke? What dark turns did his life take that set him on the path of destruction that would tear his family apart? Find out as “Deathstroke: Year One” begins…
I won’t lie, I’m incredibly anxious for this book to launch. Deathstroke is a character I love and having an opportunity to tell his origin (or, rather, his “Year One”) is overwhelming, but I think we have a pretty good take on it. I’m grateful to editor Ben Abernathy for approaching me with this project. It’s very much the Big Two type of story that I love to sink my teeth into.
For this arc, we’re primarily focusing on Slade’s transition from military life to civilian to mercenary. We’re putting him through the wringer as he tries to establish himself as the world’s deadliest assassin. There’ll be plenty of challenges in his way — he’s not the world’s deadliest assassin YET — and we’ll be teasing in a few early encounters with characters that sharp-eyed readers will recognize as major forces later in Slade Wilson’s life.
Dexter Soy has been bringing an incredible amount of energy to the book and I’m very lucky to have the opportunity to work with him.
If you’re in the shops this week, be sure to pick it up! If you need more convincing, then head on over to CBR for a five-page preview.
If that’s not enough to whet your appetite, then feast your eyes upon the cover for Deathstroke Inc. #12 (by Mikel Janin, who has absolutely been slaying it on covers):
In 2019, my wife, daughter, and I started planning a two-week road trip for the summer of 2020. Our plan was to drive from the Atlantic to the Pacific and back. But, for obvious reasons, we had to cancel our plans a couple of months before we were meant to push off. We were foolishly optimistic that the pandemic would be a distant memory by the end of 2020 and so punted the trip to 2021 and tacked on another week as a consolation prize.
I don’t think I need to tell you how that worked out. With 2021 a no-go, we punted the trip yet again and tacked on yet another week.
So, here we are in 2022. Finally in a place where we feel that we can do this (with precautions, of course).
In just over two weeks, we launch on a 32-day road trip that will also double as a signing tour. Coincidentally, I’ll be in two cities during conventions — San Diego and Chicago — so will be popping in briefly to sign at the Aftershock booth at each.
I’ll firm up everything in the next newsletter (next week), but so far, here’s the signing schedule:
WEDNESDAY, JULY 13
JET PACK COMICS, Rochester, New Hampshire
Note: Since this is the first day we’ll be on the road, this is not an official signing because I don’t know what time we’ll be in the area. We’re pretty sure that we’ll be there an hour or so before close but can’t guarantee. If not, then early the next day. I will be popping in to sign stock and any books customers have asked to be set aside to be signed.
SATURDAY, JULY 16 — 10am-Noon
HEROES YOUR MOM THREW OUT COMIC SHOP, Elmira, New York
Note: Heroes will have their own store-exclusive variant of There’s Something Wrong With Patrick Todd #1 available at the signing! I’ll be signing alongside variant cover artist Chris Bell.
SATURDAY, JULY 23 — 11am-2pm
MAXIMUM COMICS (Northwest Location), Las Vegas, Nevada
SUNDAY, JULY 24 — 11am-Noon
SAN DIEGO COMIC CON, Aftershock Booth
Note: Aftershock will have an SDCC Exclusive cover of There’s Something Wrong With Patrick Todd available!
FRIDAY, JULY 29 - Time TBD
ROSE CITY COMICS, Portland, Oregon
SATURDAY, JULY 30 - Time TBD
BIG PETE’S COMICS, North Vancouver, British Columbia
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 3 - Noon-1pm
OKANAGAN SPORTS CARDS & COMICS, Kelowna, British Columbia
THURSDAY, AUGUST 4 - 5pm-8pm
COMIC READERS SOUTH, Regina, Saskatchewan
SUNDAY, AUGUST 7 - Noon-1pm
C2E2 (Chicago), Aftershock Booth
Note: Aftershock will have a C2E2 Exclusive cover of There’s Something Wrong With Patrick Todd available!
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 10 - 1-3pm
WORLDS COLLIDE, Oshawa, Ontario
FRIDAY, AUGUST 12 - 5-7pm
PHARCYDE COMICS, Montreal, Quebec
Note: Pharcyde will have its own store-exclusive variant of Predator #1 available at the signing!
Eleven places within a month. It’s going to be a bit of a whirlwind, but I’m extremely excited to get out there and meet folks and sign some books.
I will be masking up for every signing and would encourage any planning to attend to please do the same.
I have three creator-owned comic projects in various states of development - Project: Hollywood, Project: Oshawa, and Project: Kelowna (yes, all three are named after cities). I’m also working on another non-comics-related project, which I’ll dub Project: Brunswick County.
Project: Hollywood is the project I mentioned is somewhat changing form, though, I realize it’s probably for the better now that I’ve had time to sit with it. The artist and I have invested a ton of work into this one already and are prepping it to send out to publishers shortly. The scope of this one is pretty large, covering more than 30 years in the life of our protagonist, and lives at the crossroads of my own interests (crime and film). I first pitched the idea of this book back in 2012 (or was it 2014?) and had it greenlit. However, the scope was larger than the publisher could commit to at the time, so I ended up taking it back, with the intention of waiting until the book could be done properly. I knew that it would take some time to get it going, but there’s no sense rushing a book out at the expense of the story you want to tell. I feel like we’re in a good place with it and can finally tell the story that we want to tell.
Project: Oshawa I think I’ve talked about before. It’s a concept I first came up with in 2008 and pitched in 2010. It was very nearly my first published book, but the time wasn’t right. This is another one that I’ve shelved many times, only to be drawn back to it over and over. Though it stung at the time, I’m grateful that it wasn’t released in 2010 because so much of it has changed since then and I feel like it’s a much, much stronger story as a result. I’ve been chatting with an artist who should be able to hop on art for it in the next month. Meanwhile, I’m working on the scripts, attempting to get as many banked as possible.
Project: Kelowna is a newish idea. It’s an attempt at a P.I. book, which I’d never really had much interest in trying before. But, when the idea for this one struck me — seemingly out of the blue — I couldn’t stop thinking about it and had to exorcise it out of my brain and down onto paper. Without giving too much away, it’s set in the 90s and involves the punk scene and zine culture (both of which I miss dearly). I pitched the idea to a collaborator who I love working with and he was immediately in. This one is probably a 2024 project, but we’ll see how things go.
Project: Brunswick County is a TV series pitch that a friend and I developed during the pandemic to help fill all the free time we suddenly had. This friend and I used to be part of an independent film collective back in the early 2000s and he has worked in the industry for more than two decades. We’ve talked for years about developing something together and whipped up this project over the course of several months in early to mid 2020, but then both got busy and had to backburner it. Turns out there is some potential interest, so we’ve hopped back on it and are just about to pen the pilot script.
I know that TV is a tough nut to crack, so I’m not getting my hopes up and am instead soaking in the experience.
And, because I get asked all the time: Still no real news on The Violent Vol. 2. Adam and I talked about it last week and have a couple of thoughts on how we might finally get this fucking thing done. But, then again, we’ve thought we had it figured more than once in the past.
Lastly, there should be some Murder Book news soon. I’ve been having some very interesting conversations about the future of the series.
Deathstroke Inc. #10 (DC)
There’s Something Wrong With Patrick Todd #1 (Aftershock)
Deathstroke Inc. #11 (DC)
There’s Something Wrong With Patrick Todd #2 (Aftershock)
Predator #1 (Marvel)
Deathstroke Inc. #12 (DC)
I Know You’re Only Here For Lasagna
Feast upon his beauty.
That’s all I’ve got. See you folks next week.
This is a dumb hang-up, I know it. Even worse, I’m vegetarian (since 1997) and you’d think I’d be all about knowing where my food comes from, but no. I need a disconnect.
Really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really hate them.
I planted three of my pepper plants too early. The night temps got too cold and have stunted their growth. Thankfully, the rest of them are doing okay — mostly because they were planted in containers that I would take in every night untill the weather improved.
I did work on Batman & Robin Eternal for DC back in 2015/16, but that was more of a co-writer situation. I’ve also done a handful of one shots and shorts, but this is my first time writing a series solo at DC.