Archive for December, 2010

TAKIO Looks Good!

Posted in Comics, YA Books on December 27, 2010 by Matt

And more importantly, it looks good for comics.  I’ll explain what I mean further down, but first a little about the book:

Takio is a new all-ages comic from the creative team of Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming (that’s a whole lotta names). Due out in February, here’s the preview blurb:

Takio tells the story of two sisters in a multiracial, adoptive family who are driving each other insane!!! Their overprotective mother makes them walk to school together, eat lunch together, and play together. They can’t get away from each other!! But when a one-of-a-kind, once-in-a-lifetime accident gives them real-life superpowers, these two sisters become the first actual superheroes in the entire world.

Sounds good, yes?  But here’s why I really excited: Brian Michael Bendis is writing an all-ages book.  That my friends, is huge.  Both he and Oeming are superstar talents, but as far as writers go there is no one quite like Bendis.  He’s not just a fine writer, but Bendis is one of those creators who influences the comic book industry. In his ten-plus years in the business, his naturalistic style of writing has changed the way most books are scripted. And I don’t think that’s an exaggeration, I think it’s an objective fact.  He moved the medium.

There are of course fanboy debates on whether or not this was a good thing (I believe it was), but regardless of your point of view, his influence is undeniable.  He’s big time.

So back to Takio, and all-ages books and Bendis.  As I’ve said elsewhere , the one area where I think the comics industry is dropping the ball is the kids.  There are fantastic all-ages books out there from both big name publishers, smart books that are truly aimed at kids and parents – the Pixar model, if you will.  Plus great stuff from smaller presses as well. But they should be best-sellers.  All ages should be a growth industry in comics as it is in prose fiction.  If a three-hundred page book can get the kids to put down the gameboy for a bit, surely a 22-page comic can do the same.

So when a creator like Bendis gets on board and publishes a creator-owned all-ages book, I see that as a hopeful sign of things to come.  Bendis isn’t going to save kids’ comics, but he’s at least putting his money where his mouth is, and both he and Oeming are making an effort to reach out to a new audience.

Now, will they find that audience?  I dearly hope so.  I know I’ll be buying a copy. Or two.  And I encourage you to do the same.

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In 2011, The Dead Gentleman is at the door!

Posted in New Book, The Dead Gentleman, YA Books on December 20, 2010 by Matt

In the spirit of showing off covers, here’s a sneak peak at my next book, The Dead Gentleman.  But first, a teaser from Chapter One:

“There’re things you need to know . . .  The closet door in the dark room – there are monsters in there.  The reason you’re afraid to let your arm dangle when you’re sleeping is because things are waiting under the bed for you.  The space under the stairs is bigger than the space above it and people do disappear there.  Attics can be wonderful or deadly and when you’re alone at home and feel eyes watching you – those are real, too.  An overgrown garden’s never just an overgrown garden and an old basement’s never, ever just an old basement.
I don’t have much time.  But you’ve got to be warned.  Keep safe and trust your instincts.  Be careful.  Be smart.  Be afraid.  The Dead Gentleman’s coming.”

And now, the cover with art by the very talented Odessa Sawyer:

What do you think?

Achtung! Happy Holidays!

Posted in Plugs, Powerless, The Dead Gentleman, Uncategorized on December 18, 2010 by Matt

The holidays are here and I have been a very bad blogger.  Despite my very best intentions, I am definitely on the naughty list of blogging this year, having only squeaked out a few measly posts over the past few months.

But hey, I was working!  I’ve been a busy little writer and I will have some very exciting announcements to post here in the new year – I think 2011 is going to be very exciting!

Although I’m not quite ready to talk about most of these projects, such as the Super Secret Powerless Sequel, or the Super Secret Powerless Movie Project, or the Super Secret Illustrated Serial Short Story, or the Not At All Secret New Book (The Dead Gentleman available Fall 2011!), I did get something in the mail the other day that I wanted to share:

I’ve mentioned before that one of the coolest things about being an author is getting to see the various covers from foreign editions.  I love seeing the different interpretations – it’s like seeing your book published for the first time all over again.

This is the new cover for German edition of Powerless, titled Achtung, Superheld!  It’s being released by Dressler, a fantastic publisher who publishes everything from Cornelia Funke’s Inkheart to Jules Verne!  Feast your eyes on this AWESOME  cover!

UPDATE! Check out the website of cover illustrator Helge Vogt here! Terrific talent!