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This is the first of (hopefully) many auctions to help the victims of the Australian brushfires. The money will go to the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal 2009.


If you're a creator/author/artist or just someone with cool stuff to donate & viewing this and would like to donate something to the cause, please email organizer Joe Douglas at: chroniclechamber (at) hotmail.com

You'd be amazed at what a few signed books can do to help those in need.

Some Settling May Occur

Not having time to write was really starting to become an issue over the last few months, but I finally managed to settle into a new routine, where I can write more efficiently while blocking out distractions with relative ease. I'm not sure how this came about, but I'm sure He had something to do with it. What with the answering of prayers thing He likes to do.

Anyway, I'm finally ahead of schedule again on my Phantom work. Now I need to get a few prose things out of the way and get back to working on my creator owned stuff.

I can really see how much I love writing, based on how flustered I get when I can't do it. Thankfully, some settling did occur...

Questions on the Ghost

For anyone interested in checking out the new Phantom series, The Phantom: Ghost Who Walks, (which should be YOU), I just did an interview on that very topic, to be found here.

Check it out & let me know what you thought.

Time for Time?

Managing my time is becoming a task unto itself these days. I have a pile of writing work to do over the next few months and my old schedule of writing from 3-6, then 6:30-noon isn't really viable right now with everything else I have going on. So, I really need to find a new structure to make time for time.

Meanwhile, I accepted a job to write a horror/ghost prose story. At first I wasn't sure if I was the right guy (or write guy) for the job, but then I remembered a story I'd started a few months ago based on a nightmare I had. At the time I didn't have an avenue to get the story published and shelved it. Thankfully, I keep every idea, no matter how big or small, in the vault for possible use in the future.

Speaking of nightmares, I had one last night where I was sitting down with the head buyer for Barnes & Noble in my local store as she told me they wouldn't carry any of my books because "The author won't come into the stores to talk about us carrying them." Yes, my nightmares have a sense of irony, apparently...

I finally cleared all the editing work off my desk I had backlogged from being sick. It's nice to see daylight. Granted, some of it went back to the authors for re-writes/polishing/etc, so it'll come right back to me, but that's okay. I enjoy the process and it's an honor to get to work closely with so many incredibly talented scribes.

In other news, I booked my trip to Seattle for the Emerald City Con in April. I couldn't go last year because I had more important things to attend to, but this year I'm there once again. It's simply the best show I've ever attended and I can't wait to go back. I'm bummed that my family can't come with me, but the current economy has really made us stream line a lot of things, including travel. God willing, we'll get to go back later on for a short family vacation. We love Seattle. If you've never been, you're really missing out. Wonderful people, great culture, dynamic city, incredible food and some of the neatest hotels I've ever seen anywhere.

Well, now that I've wasted enough time, I better go look for some more...

Booked Up

The process has begun to set the Lions, Tigers and Bears prose series in motion. I've created an outline for the first two books, and have a plot for book three in place. Now, I just need to get the writing going, as well as wait for word from my agent as to where I can place it, publisher wise.

Once I have that well underway, I'll be moving on to the my sci fi series, which I really can't wait to get working on.

In the meantime, I just finished the plot for Phantom: Ghost Who Walks #5-6. The new series debuts next week with the Zero issue. From what I've been told, sales are up, so I'm praying this new series brings The Phantom to a lot of new readers. He's such a great character, it's a shame he's lost his rightful place in US speculative fiction and the comic book market.

Speaking of books in the works, Lions, Tigers and Bears volume III is very near to completion. To make it more exciting, Sean "Cheeks" Galloway will be rendering the "B" cover for #1, which should be absolutely awesome. The A & B covers for #1 of v2 were both spectacular and based on the existing cover for v3 #1a, this volume should be equally well dressed when it launches.

Yesterday, I got one of those "out of the blue" phone calls offering me another writing gig, as well. It's not something I'm normally all about, but it's very intriguing, so I'm giving it some thought before I accept or decline the offer. The muse hasn't dropped any inspiration on me for a story since the phone call, but you never know what might happen in the next few days...

Super biotic

The super antibiotics the Doc gave me are doing the trick. I'm hoping to be back to (nearly) 100% by tomorrow for the Superbowl... I still can't believe the Cardinals made it to the show.

At the behest of Jon Lewis, I grabbed a copy of the Spiderwick Chronicles #1 yesterday. This is the format I'm aiming for with the new LTB YA novels. It looks to be about 9-10,000 words, with lots of nice spot illustrations. I'm thinking once I have the format down, I can knock out a book in about a month. Once the first one hits the stores, that would (hopefully) ensure a rapid fire release of new LTB tales for the Stuffed Animal Faithful. Based on the amount of story seeds I've concocted over the last five years, I'm good for at least ten of the books before I start stealing ideas I have earmarked for the comics.

If all goes well, LTBv3 #1 should hit comic shops this summer, then before v4 rolls out, the first novel will be available.

In the meantime, I need to iron out the plot for Phantom: Ghost Who Walks #5-6, as well as finish off the scripts for the new Phantom serial, The Hammer, I'm doing with Ruben Procopio. That one will be a blast to work on.

I really love having such a variety of things to write and can't understand how someone could just do one thing. Thankfully, the Lord has blessed me with plenty.

Speaking of The Phantom, the Zero issue of the new series should be in stores in about ten days. Which means t-minus one month to #1. I really enjoyed working on the first story arc & really hope everyone who reads it does as well.

CONdemned the sequel

Well, the Phoenix con is over now. It was definitely a fun experience, but I came home exhausted & seem to have contracted some sorta strep throat or other bug of the nasty variety. Now, I'm all fired up to write a bunch, but don't have the energy (physical or mental) to do anything worthwhile other than fiddle fool on the 'net or watch TV.

This show was a real milestone for me, in that I came home & really felt fired up to create a lot, but didn't have things waiting for me that would suck that desire out and stomp the ashes into dust. Sure, I'm sick, but the desire is still there. In fact, I got a considerable amount of work done yesterday in the valley between exhaustion and sickness. Now, once I rise out of sickguy valley, I should be well on the road to creationville.

So, what came out of the con, you ask? Nothing major, other than the fact I'm taking the short story Into the Shadowlands, I wrote in '07 for a short fiction anthology which never saw publication, and reworking it into a full blown YA novel entitled Lions, Tigers and Bears: Lost in the Shadows. If all goes well, I should be done with it by Summer time, then I can have at the other novel I'm working on that I mentioned a few days ago. I have to say thanks to J.S. Lewis, James Owen, Rob Osborn, Jeremy Owen and Mike Kunkel for encouraging me to take this next step. It's amazing what a few encoruaging words can unleash upon the world. Thanks, guys!

In other wonderful news, Sean "Cheeks" Galloway has offered to do the variant cover for LTBv3 #1. I've loved his work for years, and spoken to him online a lot, but this was the first time I got to meet him face to face. Even better that LTB fans get to buy a book with his gorgeous work on the cover.

The Con itself is in the last year at Mesa and will move to the Phoenix Convention Center next year, where it'll more than double in size. It's pretty exciting to have been part of this show since the second year. God willing, I'll still be attending in the twenty-second year and beyond...


I'm not sure why, but Conventions are always so exhausting, physically. It's not like I'm doing a bunch of hard, manual labor (I do move some heavy boxes of books in & out every day, but that's only for 20-30 minutes). Maybe it's the mental impact on the body, from having to be "on" the whole time, from open to close. And, I'm sure the sheer randomness of when & what you can eat factors in.

Anyway, I'm wiped out & there's still one day to go. It's a lot of fun, regardless and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Some of the highlights so far this year:

*Having my wife & son there for a few hours. It was awesome to share the fun of the event with them & watch our boy get enthralled with the over stimulation that comes with a comic convention.
*Hanging with Mike Kunkel & his awesome daughter, who is quite the artist in her own right.
*Seeing my good friend Rob Osborn for the first time in years. Rob and his lovely wife used to live here, but moved away. The move's been good for them, but we miss 'em.
*Erin Gray served us pieces from Gil "Buck Rogers" Gerard's birthday cake. She's VERY nice, funny & warm. And as beautiful as ever.
*Sitting next to Jo Chen and her husband, who are also from DC. I never really get homesick, but it's nice to meet people from home.
*Participating in a panel with Tone Rodriguez, Karl Kesel & Dan Wickline. Tone & Dan are really funny together. It was an honor to be in on it.
*Discussing storytelling with Kunkel, Osborn & James Owen. These guys are all inspired, as well as inspiring.
*Seeing all the wonderful local comic scene people I only run into at comic events.
*Meeting Sean "Cheeks" Gallloway for the first time in person. He's a great artist and a really wonderful person.
*Having a few minutes to chat with friends like Shannon Denton, J.S. Lewis, Andy Kuhn, Christian Beranek and others...

On today's agenda, Kunkel and I have a panel about creating comics for younger audiences. It should be a blast. Mike always brings this magical vibe to the conversation when he waxes creative. After that, I have to cut my table time a bit short for a Phantom panel that starts a half hour before the exhibit hall closes and runs a half hour after. Not the best timing, but I'm happy the Ghost Who Walks gets his hour in the sun, so I'm there.

Anyway, time to head out. God willing, the joy will keep the exhaustion at bay...

By the Fire Light

We had a great time with our Home Team last night. For those of you who don't know, a Home Team is a group of people who get together to do Bible Study, Prayer time and, in general, do life together. It's really amazing how much light other people can cast into your life, and vice versa.

This morning, I had to do some last minute stuff for the Con, but I'm itching to get back to writing. I had an off day yesterday & didn't get much done, but today (when I don't have time) the creative fires are burning bright. I wonder how much of that was stoked by last night's Team time...

My writing always comes in spurts, where I can knock out a month's worth in two weeks, then the next two weeks the muse goes on vacation. Hopefully, the current fire will still be roaring next week!

Deep Woods Paneling

As mentioned the other day, this weekend is the Phoenix Comic Con. A new wrinkle, for me, coming out of this show is hosting a panel on The Phantom. I've been on many convention panels, but never hosted one. So, to that end, I've spent the last few hours compiling info, images, etc and jotting down an outline to go by during the panel.

It's rather daunting trying to summarize the Phantom's history in just thirty minutes, but I think I have a pretty good grasp on what I need to touch on, so hopefully, it'll work out well.

If you're in the area Sunday, swing by the Mesa Convention Center & check it out.