Tuesday, December 26, 2006

A very merry Xmas to one and all. I had a quiet time, mostly spending kwality time with my boy. Between you and me though I've never been completely at ease with what the festive season is all about. I'm glad it's all over, but I sincerely hope y'all had a good good great great time.
Was also able to catch up on Otogi Zoshi volume 2, published by Tokyopop, written by Narumi Seto and adapted by yours truly. After the first volume establishes much of the background and grounding for the characters, volume 2 for me is what it's all about. It's a lovely vibrant wonderful story with a great ending, brimming with loads of emotional impact, one I'm intensely proud to be associated with. Ah, the wonders of Xmas joy. Good will to all men, ladies, girls, boys, dogs, and hamsters.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Back from the Birmingham Comics Show where I seemed intent on drinking and smoking myself to death, but didn't quite succeed. I have to say the show was the best Winter Convention I'd been at for some time. I think the location had a lot to do with it. Conventions these days, especially the ones around this time, are pretty devoid of editors and the like, so there's little chance of work. But unlike Brighton, London and Bristol before, Birmingham is easy to reach so people didn't feel nearly as downhearted as they might have with a more hassle-intensive journey still fresh in the mind. Mind you, I heard for those souls going back to London on the Sunday that trains were stopping at Northampton. I helpfully suggested that they could pop in there and say hello to Alan Moore.
Yeh, the vibe was good. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves and it was good to catch up with Ben, Laurence, Jon, Dylan...oh the list goes on.
Accompanying art is the Silver Surfer from the brush of the insanely talented Esad Ribic. Esad is Croatian but this year I've drank with him in New York, San Diego, and now the mighty Brum. Ye cannae beat it!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

I lifted the image to the right from David Bishop's blog. An ex-editor of mine. There's quite a few out there that fit that description. David now occupies the elevated position of writer and has built up some notable credits over the past few years. Quite an austere blog photo you have there, Dave.

Anyhoo this is the cover by Doug Klauba for the Phantom prose anthology book (that's proper writing to you and me) to be published by Moonstone scheduled May 2007. David Bishop and myself have short stories appearing. Last time I think we both shared credits on a publication was a Judge Dredd story written by me, edited by him, and drawn by Jim Murray. Not that anyone was credited for the story at the time...


Saturday, November 25, 2006

Got a 'Dexter's Laboratory' strip in the latest issue of CNBP. Y'know you complete a script and send it off, but you're never quite sure if you've quite pulled it off until you read the thing in newsprint in front of you. Dexter has to hunt down one of his cleaner robots gone rogue (as opposed to rouge, which I found myself originally typing - maybe that would have been a better idea). The robot's called Al and draws his inspiration from Al Capone, or at least the version of that infamous historical figure that bounced around my mind at the time.

I have this sequence revolving around Dexter blowing his whistle. Not sure if it totally comes off, but the strip reads better second time round.

Anyhoo Happy Thanksgiving to all our good friends across the pond. And thank you in particular for Battlestar Galactica. I still maintain the person who came up with the idea of a Cylon attack every 33 minutes (going a wee way back there) should be given a medal.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Well I finished 'The Last Posse' and dutifully sent it off to Joe Gentile at Moonstone and after all this time devoted to getting it done I'm feeling kinda strange now that I've come at last to that point when it's done. Mind you while initial feedback from the publisher is good I have been promised comments, so it looks like the story'll be back on my lap pretty soon.

Anyhoo in the interest of posterity, here're the first two paragraphs of the story.

HE had been riding hard for three days and nights. Pounding through the shit hole desert, the dust filling the cracks in his creased leather skin. His mount kept a steady gallop. Mustang was the horse’s name. He’d been meaning to think up a better one, but never quite getting round to it. The sound Mustang’s hooves made upon the ground measured time like the beating of a heart. It instigated another chapter of the rider’s life in the shit and dirt and dust of the Wild West.

Time may be chronological, but life is a map of events in search of whatever connection it may find. Like the time he’d risen for a late breakfast of horsemeat and whisky, then made his way to Old Man Jessop’s for a dry shave. He sat slumped in the barber’s chair as Jessop caressed his neck and chin with sure fine strokes. Steady, Jessop was sure steady. In another life the old man would have been an artist or a gunslinger.

The 'he' in question above is Wyatt Earp. Around 16000 words later and we're done. More later.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Hullo. Was interviewed recently for 2000 AD. Its starting (and ending) point were letters I'd written to the comic as a young(ish) fan. One such letter appeared in Prog 494 and it went:

Tharg, It won't be long now until 2000AD reaches its mega 500th issue - that's 500reasons why the thrill-sucker is as extinct as the Dodo...

And Lord how it goes on. Please don't ask me to tell you how old I was when I wrote it. Did receive a fiver for getting it published, though. (Which is more than I get for most stories these days.) Nowadays you get a letter in 2000 AD and they send you a Strontium Dog tea towel.

Anyhoo back to the interview. Here's one of the answers, to the question 'How did you get that first commission, and how did it feel to work for Tharg for the first time?'

I met David Bishop, editor at the time of Judge Dredd Megazine, at a Glasgow Comics Convention and our discussion ended with me sending in a proposal, which became my first commission, 'Calhab Justice'. One of the Bishop's comments on the initial proposal was that the warring Clans structure felt very 2000 AD. After that I was commissioned pretty regularly for the Meg for a couple of years. It was a great feeling, truly a light headed affair. Although looking back I wish I never took it too much for granted and worked more on my writing, especially from the structure side. But it was a great bohemian life, in my twenties winding my way in coffee shops, plotting Ed MacBrayne and Judge Dredd and generally spouting all kinds of nonsense.

As it happens I only did the one strip for 2000 AD. A Future Shock - some of my family still talk about it.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Dear old Brum, that's where this year's UK 'winter' Convention is going to be held. It follows on from last year's Brighton, and Bristol the year before that. I'm reliably informed that next year's will be hosted in Barlinnie!* Anyhoo I'll be there as I've always been partial to the yellow stuff.** Arriving Saturday afternoon and leaving on the Monday, so you never know might bump into some of you good people.***

*You might want to google Barlinnie prison, Scotchland to get the joke. That's if you think I'm joking of course.


***At least I should be able to talk about 'The Last Posse' at Brum with considerably more certainty as I've just finished the first draft. Yippee!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Hello. Thought it might be a good opportunity to mop up a few loose threads (mixed metaphor there). I did get that Phantom prose story finished. In fact it was approved by King Features (who own the character) without changes, which doesn’t happen every day. And plucky Scotchland did visit the Ukraine and were given a 2-0 beating for their troubles. Ah it was tough watching it. All I can say is Scotchland don’t play their next competitive game until next March and I thank the Lord for that.

It’s probably worth mentioning what I’m doing at the moment. It’s another prose story for Moonstone to be presented in Widevision, where you have text and illustrations. All you Brits out there of a particular vintage need not think beyond the ‘Rupert the Bear’ newspapers strips for an idea of what I mean. Final format is still up in the air I suppose and won’t be fully decided until I get the fecker done. It’s set in the Wild West with the working title of ‘The Last Posse’ featuring a number of characters including Wyatt Earp, Belle Starr, and Geronimo all coming together to battle an ancient threat imperiling a Western town. I should be finishing the first draft in the next week or so. The word count at the moment is heading above 15000. It’s a big and ambitious job and if I do any more prose I’m in real danger of being considered a proper writer, but oh Lordy if you have a couple of moments feel free to wish me well on it.

So what are you up to at the moment?

Monday, October 09, 2006

A little birdie may have told you that plucky Scotland beat World Cup finalists France 1-0 on Saturday. That’s France featuring plucky Thierry ‘va va voom’ Henry and the like. That’s France who had just beaten plucky World Cup winners Italy in their last game. And I was there at Hampden Park shouting my busty head off. What a day. Why are we so good? And now the lads are off to play the Ukraine on Wednesday. Alas I won’t be joining the team in Kiev opting for the closer proximity of the Auctioneers instead. But by gum I’ll be cheering them on. C’moan the lads! Anyhoo better go as Johnny Mnemonic is on the tele.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

For your viewing pleasure here's an exclusive sneak peak of Page 1 of a new, vibrant, and exciting Johnny Bravo strip by me and Mike DeCarlo.

For me the highlight is Panel 3. Especially when you consider the detail I went into describing the scene. The panel description from the original script went hence:

Johnny’s face rips out through the newspaper.

Mike's done a pretty darn good job of depicting this as I'm sure all both of you will agree. Who says artists don't earn their keep.

Story's called Bad Mama Hair Day and is a heartfelt plea on the shocking amount of cash ladies pay in order to get their hair done! Y'know someone has to make a stand. Stop this insanity now! Unless of course you're a ginger in which case there's not much I can do for you. Bad Mama Hair Day will appear in a future issue of Cartoon Network Block Party from DC comics.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

And here's Page 24 again from Michael. Spock, rocky vista, big monster...leaving absolutely no one in doubt that this is a Star Trek story! Yay!

Personally it was just great putting words into the fizzers of such wonderfully iconic characters. Scotty says it best. "What a hoot!"

Page 18 of 'Oban' with art by Michael. This is where Kirk talks dirty from his chair to an alien lifeform. But relax true believers they don't end up shagging.

Umm...come to think of it I think that particular exchange was rejected for something a little more serious more in keeping with the actual story. Still, check out that fourth panel and those come to bed eyes!

Happy Birthday Star Trek, which is now 40 years old. I've made my own tiny little contribution having written one of five stories in 'Star Trek The Manga' published by Tokyopop. Artist Michael Shelfer and me present 'Oban'. As the official blurb goes, "warring planets exchange peace offerings via the Enterprise, but one 'gift' may be more than what it seems".

It's a monster story basically, and I've tried to be as true to the original series as possible. Great characters, boys own adventure, and space ships. Ye cannae beat it.

The book is out now and this is one of three covers on offer. That's Spock saying hello, btw.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

For most of this week I’ve forgone the custard creams in order to get my tax return together. Basically it all starts with a plastic bag full to the brim of all last year’s receipts. Then I have this internal dialogue where I ask myself why I couldn’t have kept my records up to date on a regular basis rather than the current situation rushing about at the last minute like a mad loon. But isn’t it always the way. There’s that lazy fecker in all of us, which of course explains how global warming came about.

Still, it’s a pain doing me tax return, keeping me away from a Johnny Bravo strip and the Western story I’m doing for Moonstone. Not to mention all those disappointed faces when I said I couldn’t go out last Wednesday. Well, mine mostly.

Having said that have you noticed how sexy comics have gotten recently? Not the actual comics themselves, but all things associated with those plucky little pamphlets? I was speaking to a lassie recently enthused by the motion picture ‘A History of Violence’. I piped in that I’d been for a meal with John Wagner, who wrote the graphic novel from Paradox on which the film is based. She reacted by insisting that I must be famous, which would be nice if it was true. But there you go, there’s so much out there informing popular culture originally inspired by the comics medium. I'm sure you can think of plenty more examples. Mind you the following exchange is also pretty typical: “I’m a big fan of Batman. I have all the DVDs.” It makes one wish I had a little ‘comics parcel’ I could hand over as I witter on about Dark Knights, and Killing Jokes, and source material and all that jazz.

Oh, and I did get my tax return finished eventually just in case you’re wondering. Huzzah! Ginger slices all round.

Monday, August 21, 2006

And over to the world of the non-fictional - My wee boy David started school today.

He is a star!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Negative Burn # 3, the anthology published by Desperado/Image, is out now guys and gals. 10 foot tall Jon Haward and me have a story in there, entitled ‘Sideburns’. Having sat down with a cup of strong coffee and read the strip, though, I’ve got to say some 'rogue' word balloon placements make it appear far more wilfully obscure than I would have wished. Our story, as now is, reminded me of Guy Ritchie’s ‘Revolver’. (Which isn’t that bad a movie, don’t you think the guy’s suffered enough anyway being married to Madonna?) All that was missing from ‘Sideburns’ was some bad guy wearing lizard-skinned underpants, but I can take care of that at a later date. Maybe I could combine it with my other ambition to write a sequel to ‘Nuns on the Run’.

Truth is I don’t know if I should laugh or cry, so have decided to do neither.

Personally I think 'Sideburns' boasts some of the finest artwork from big Jon I've seen. And Phil Hester and Federico Dallocchio 's 'The Stone Devil' is worth the admission fee alone. The book also has a rather delectable Frazer Irving sketchbook section. You have to admit Fraze is rather talented in his own diminutive way. Let’s face it if it was up to me I’d have him drawing Daleks battering the shit out of Cybermen and very little else.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Otogi Zoshi volume 1 adapted by me, but please, please, it’s Narumi Seto you should be thanking, who wrote and drew it. The book is a prequel of sorts to the well-received Anime of the same name. To those who aren’t in the know Manga is Japanese for comic strip, Anime for cartoon. If you’re glad you’ve started reading this, please don’t stop.

Opinions have been canvassed and here’s a quick straw pole.

A lassie called telophase says of the book:

One day the girl sneaks out and follows her brother, and starts a chain of events that theoretically lead to plot, but I'm not sure because I was so bored by all of it.


The much more sensibly named Hazel names Otogi Zoshi as ‘Hot pick of the month’. Oh momma. She also goes on to say:

…fantastic character design, fast paced fighting action and a lingering love interest you’re dying to see develop.


I say, lock ‘em in a darkened room and let ‘em fight it out among themselves. Alternatively I could put on my favourite ponytail and exclaim ‘vive la difference’ to the passing crowd before riding off on my charcoal-coloured horse. I suppose.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Ah-ha, that’s me back. Another San Diego Comic Convention consigned to the glorious trashcan of history. The fifth one in total I’ve attended in case you were wondering. Most of the time, though, I was asked if this was my first due to the near expert impenetrability of my accent. Think of the Scottish cousin at the wedding of Charlotte and Trey MacDougall in ‘Sex and the City’ and you’ll be halfway there. Anyhoo it was a good convention. From an editorial point of view I seem to have a good reputation. What’s missing is that project that’ll give me mass appeal. As to where I should acquire said assignment any comments/advice/limericks - all gratefully received. I thank you.

Also out is the first volume of Otogi Zoshi where I executed the rather magnificent role of ‘English Adaptation’. When you consider the paragraph above, you can just taste, nay chew, the irony. Tokyopop publishes said periodical and, yes, it’s Manga, and, yep, you read the thing back to front right to left. Nor should you be surprised that the book is a rather lovely piece of whimsy, life-affirming really. The first volume takes its time developing the characters before the second (and last) packs the punch, but you can’t have the one without the other. Lady Hikaru learns to use the bow and catches a cold in the rain of 10th Century Kyoto. She is seemingly frail, emotional, and true of heart. And she will become everything that a heroine should and can be.

Oh, and the book lists my name as ‘Jim O. Alexander’ in the credits. This is probably just the result of misreading the initial of my middle name, which is David. But just maybe it’s all part of a cunning plan to make me appear more Japanese. Maybe the Vapours were right.

“I’m turning Japanese, I really think so.”

Monday, July 17, 2006

I’ll be heading oot to San Diego on Wednesday. It’s a damn long way to go. California is eight hours behind us in dear old blighty. By the time they’re eating breakfast I’m on my fourth fresh pair of socks.

Anyhoo if this year’s convention is anywhere near as good as last year’s it’ll be a good one. I enjoy a measure of name recognition now. I no longer have to go through the rigmarole of introduction, to then register the deadness behind the eyes of editor/publisher/creator/bar steward the precise moment I mention I’m a writer. Yep, that seems to be behind me now. Well, for the most part.

Perhaps a little.

I’ll see you in The Field 8pm (San Diego time) sharp.

Monday, July 10, 2006

In terms of shelf life Comics International #197 only has a week or so left, but it still merits a coupla mentions from me good self. My Spidey/Cap Britain/Fury story was given 9 out of 10 in the reviews section. So it’s official then, I’m Jim ‘9 out of 10’ Alexander. If that doesn’t impress the ladies then I don’t know what will.

It’s also worth mentioning the Top 100 US comicbook sales for February, which CI also lists. My Birds of Prey was no. 68 in the charts with sales of 29,835, a slight drop on the previous issue, but perhaps more disappointedly just sneaking under the 30,000 mark by the width of a bawhair. Ah, well, I’ll just have to take solace from all the beautiful women in a state of undress who shout out from their bedroom windows asking if I’m that ‘9 out of 10’ fella. To whit I’ll smile and maybe give a little wave.

As Mike Scott was once heard to warble, “What do I have to lose someone might wave back.”

Saturday, June 17, 2006

I’m not one to talk in length about what I’m working on at that precise moment. Don’t want to tempt fate I suppose. But as I’m one of the names already bandied about for the Phantom Prose Anthology to be published by Moonstone, I may as well dwell on a few thoughts. I’ve nearly finished the first draft, and the story, called ‘Truth and Consequence’, is coming along rather nicely. Having said that it’s still a first draft with bits written in the first person, the third person, and in a person who turned up to the party uninvited who no one’s seen before.

The Phantom (AKA ‘The Ghost Who Walks’) is widely considered to be the first superhero, created by Lee Falk for a newspaper strip in 1936. And don’t worry if you’ve never heard of him as he’s pretty big in Sweden J If his name does ring a bell think of the Hollywood film a few years back starring Billy Zane and a pre-Michael Douglas Catherine Zeta Jones. But give the big guy his due he still does good business in the States and Europe, published by Moonstone and Egmont respectively. As for my story, the Phantom has been captured by the Nazis and is being interrogated in an isolated castle in Africa. There follows a war of wills between interrogator and prisoner. I could say more but I can’t be arsed. Think McGoohan’s ‘The Prisoner’ and, erm, stop thinking at around about there! I should say that it’s shaping up as an agreeably psychologically twisted tale and should be a nice change of pace from the more action-orientated stories normally associated with the character. Other writers involved in the project include Ron Marz, Steven Grant, and Paul Storrie. S’no bad indeed.

I take it everyone is enjoying the World Cup. C’moan the Ghana!


Saturday, June 03, 2006

Cartoon Network Block Party #21 is out about now. It features a Johnny Bravo strip called ‘Fishy Sitter’ by Mike Decarlo and me. In the story Johnny ‘baby-sits’ a goldfish for a friend. Of course he makes a right arse of it and comedy mayhem ensues. Again I’m revisiting an old theme here. In ‘Facts of Life’, a short strip which appeared in the original incarnation of Negative Burn, I tell the tale of a young man who was taught the facts of life by his mother using goldfish. Which itself was inspired by my mother’s real life admission that she taught my sister the facts of life using goldfish. And people wonder how I turned out the way I did.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

If I can cast you back to New York mid February. Drinking in a pub called the Irish Rogue until 4 in the morn. Jim Lee was there, and those crazy dudes Esad Ribic and Frazer Irving among a multitude of other celebs large and small making funny noises. Anyhoo the photo is of Josh Blaylock from Devil’s Due doing his world-renowned Jim Kerr impersonation. But check out the guy on the left in the background looking up at a giant mouse. Ah, happy days.

Photograph courtesy of David Baillie, an Anglo Scot, but you can forgive him for that. He’s also one of those talented feckers who writes and draws. His blog is very entertaining and dare I say, not a little informative.


Sunday, May 21, 2006

Well that’s me survived yet another Bristol comics convention. Although I did have my doubts. I found myself drinking vodka and red bull the night before and it played havoc with my head on the plane to Bristol. My nose started to crackle with the cabin pressure, then I could feel my brain expanding in my skull.

But here I am alive and well and ready to tell you more of Star Trek Manga. This is the book from Tokyopop, which shows the Shat and his mates in a Manga light. I write ‘Oban’ with art from Michael Shelfer. Oban is a Scottish town on the West Coast, but otherwise sounds pretty Star Trek and groovy don’t you think? It isn’t the first time I’ve used Oban as inspiration for one of my stories. It makes an appearance in ‘Family Snapshot’, a Calhab Justice story I wrote for Judge Dredd Megazine a lifetime ago. The strip featured the Oban coliseum, which looks just like it sounds although smaller. Russell Crowe look-a-likes, screaming that they are Factimus Maximus, stretch out as far as the eye can see.

There’s been quite a bit of buzz about this book. More on our story, ‘Oban’, rather than the town, including a couple of pages of artwork can be found at:


Monday, May 08, 2006

It's this weekend in case you are wondering. I have a signing on Saturday at 11am, so come seek me out and I'll give you a free comic. Honest, guv, no strings an' anyfing. Then it's off to find a pub in Bristol showing the Scottish Cup Final. C'moan the Gretna!


Tuesday, May 02, 2006

The Scottish dialect has more words for rain than any other language. And it certainly seems that way as I look out the window this May evening and note that it's pissing down. Anyhoo don't let that put you off, usher in the summer with Negative Burn #3, published by Image and out in July. It features 'Sideburns: Conjoined Sins' by me and 10 foot tall Jon Haward. This is our anti-Panini Spider-Man if you like. The kind of story we couldn't tell in that particular organ in a million years. The book also features fellow stalwarts Frazer Irving, Brian Bolland, and Paul Jenkins. Imagine all three of them locked in a room trying to sing for their dinner. Ok, before I lose the thread completely. Negative Burn #3. For your perusal, Page One of our strip is featured in an earlier post but one. I thankyou.


Saturday, April 29, 2006

There hasn't been anything like the fanfare that accompanied the first Captain Britain story, which appeared a year or so ago, but Spec Spidey 133 is out boasting a much stronger, more satisfying read. Don't take my word for it, read this:

Ok, I admit I couldn’t have written a better review myself, but I didn’t, not this one, honest guv. Interestingly Khayem the reviewer mentions the fact that Spidey doesn’t appear until midway through the story. The fact it takes so long for the lead character to make an appearance did give the marketing guys the jitters, but if you’re not giving these guys sleepless nights at least some of the time you’re not really doing your job. Oi, get that tongue out of yer cheek! Seriously, though, its fair-dos to everyone involved as the Fury story pushes the comic’s format as far as we could. In an environment where you can’t call the Fury a killing machine, where you can’t refer to Elektra as an assassin, and you can’t call the Red Skull a Nazi, I think the boys did good.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

What with 'bird flu' hysteria gripping these Isles - (Well, it was mentioned a couple of times at work on Friday) - I thought I'd throw this page into the spotlight. A murder has been committed in a duck pond, as shown in the opening page of 'Sideburns: Conjoined Sins' written by myself with art from 10 feet tall Jon Haward. Story's scheduled to appear in the soon to be reincarnated Negative Burn from Image/Desperado. Is it in issue 1?* I dunno. I'll probably find out with the rest of you. It's quackers, man!

*(It's in issue 3, out in July.)

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

'Ello peeps. It may not be One Year Later, but Cartoon Network Block Party #19 is out from DC as of around about right now. No, I haven't written the Powerpuff Girls story. It's another Johnny Bravo for me - 'Whoah! Great popcorn! Bodacious babe! Hot movie! And not a pigtail in sight!' Yes it's true there is someone out there willing to pay me to write lines like this :-)

I'm busy at the moment. As if real life wasn't demanding enough I'm working on the script polish for Tokyopop's Otogi Zoshi vol 2. I'm putting together a Wide Vision proposal for Moonstone. And I have some more Cartoon Network scripts to bring to life.

As a wise man was once overheard to say, 'Nature abhors a vacuum. It doesn't matter how many nostril hairs one pulls out, they're all back again in the morning.'

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Tomorrow is the general UK release date for V for Vendetta, the major motion picture based on the classic Warrior/DC comic strip (depending whether you first saw it in black and white or colour) by Alan Moore and David Lloyd. Tomorrow is also the day I embark on a two night stag (not my own) in the beautiful windy Isle of Arran. Anyhoo to commemorate one if not the other here's the first page of David Lloyd's 'Elemental', which was published in Metal Hurlant and written by li'l old me. Does this make me two steps removed from Natalie Portman (yeh, yeh, like right it does)!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Portrait of a Writer as a Large Lugged Man. This little sketch was drawn by Michael Avon Oeming in a New York bar on a Saturday night. What can I say I am that real-life caricature. Someone recently compared me to their favourite mug.

You know I might have my revenge on the world yet by giving regular updates on my face. Like the pluke on the side of my nose that's resided there for the last three weeks...

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

It seems everyone and his or her granny has something to say on my BOP. I am very gratified. I am so very used to otherwise being ignored. But have to confess to a little ‘review fatigue’ creeping in. I know what you’re thinking, there’s no pleasing some folk is there? Mind you one of the more unusual reviews is from Polite Dissent, entitled ‘Birds of Prey # 91: A Medical Review’. It begins with a quote from Page 1 of the comic: The prognosis is acute renal collapse.

And proceeds to comment – "That’s really more of a diagnosis than a prognosis."

Incredibly insightful, I immediately awarded myself a D minus and promised to do better. Catch the whole review on:

Monday, March 06, 2006

If you have your fast boots on then dash down to your local WH Smiths and pick up a copy of Panini's Spectacular Spider-Man #130. This shouldn't be viewed as much of an obligation as you can always hurriedly put it down again. Spidey teams up this issue with Spider-Woman against the dread might of Dormammu! I have to admit writing the script was as torturous as it gets, but it's come out surprisingly well. Worth buying for Spider-Woman saying the word 'mitts' and for John Royle's terrific art. Oh, and there's a free Spidey click camera 'n' all!

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Oh, blog how I have neglected thee. To be fair I have been rather busy. The Birds of Prey issue came out as expected. And blow me down people seemed to like it. Of course I’ve now noticed a few bad reviews popping up recently. Yin and yang have so much to answer for don’t you think? But I’m glad most of the guys and gals who picked up the issue feel they got their 2 ½ bucks worth…or 1 pound 60p for that matter.

Then it was off to New York to meet my adoring public. Unfortunately that one guy had to spend the weekend in a clinic, leaving me to soldier on in my capacity as bit-player-C-celebrity-comics-writer-honest. It was a good Convention. I’m in this strange situation where most editors are aware of me but aren’t quite ready to talk projects. But y’know I met Ben McCool on Sunday 12.30pm at the Bull Moose Saloon and drank until 4 the following morning, so at least I have the memories – or I should say had the memories until I obliterated them with much lashings of alcohol. It was good seeing everybody. You know who you are.

I got into Glasgow on Wednesday morning, the threat of jetlag following me around like a black ominous cloud. Then had to plunge what energy I had left into revisions on my Star Trek Original Series Manga script for Tokyopop. As one great philosopher said to the other – "I could sleep for a week." As the other replied: "I could sleep for a fortnight."

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

And something of a world exclusive for ya. Page 7 from the interior of Birds of Prey #91. Art by Brad Walker and Jimmy Palmiotti. Hi-Fi Design is responsible for the gorgeous colours.

Here's the cover in all its full glory. On sale Feb 15th.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Jimbo's world tour 2006 continues with my confirmation as a guest at the Bristol International Comic Expo on May 13 and 14. The event is organised by Mike Allwood and he'll probably have me down for a signing. Have to say it's a pretty impressive guestlist. There's Roy Thomas, Howard Chaykin, Geoff Johns, and, er, me. Something for everyone really.


Thursday, February 02, 2006

Rather tentatively took a dip in one of the many Birds of Prey message boards. Not much has been made of issue 91. Most people I would imagine are reserving judgement until they read the thing. Mind you there was one post, which went just like this:

No way am I getting this. Never. I'm getting Nightwing #117 instead.

By gum I must have really upset the guy in a past life. Did I steal his drink one night, maybe unwittingly bought that last pair of patterned socks he desperately had his eye on, I dunno...? Anyhoo Birds of Prey #91 is out in two weeks time and I reveal a little more about the story on:


Thursday, January 26, 2006

If you venture into the tubes today, that is:

…you’ll find a feature on the upcoming Spider-Man & Captain Britain v the Fury strip by Jon, John, John, and me. Story appears in issue 133 (on sale 20th April) of the British newsstand title Spectacular Spider-Man. Which is nice. The Fury is once again listed as an Alan Moore creation. Ah, so, once again, there’s no pressure then. Mind you there is no truth to the rumour that if you sheared Alan Moore you’d find underneath someone who looks a lot like me. Not even a rumour, really. Something I just made up on the spot…

…I’ll get my coat.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

That’s it all done and dusted. The final preparations have been made. I will be attending the New York Convention at the Jacob K. Javits Centre on the 24th – 26th February. I’m due to arrive at midday on the Friday. My arrival no doubt marked by a spectacular fanfare of helium-filled balloons and performing mime artists. Father time will snatch back those 5 hours time difference from Scotland to the USA when I depart the following Tuesday evening to arrive back on Wednesday morning. So is this what it’s like travelling on the Tardis, only a little slower?

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The deadline for my script polish for Otogi Zoshi was yesterday. I’d finished the job on Sunday, it was just a formality, or so you’d think so. Thing is I had to come home early from work having caught one of these bugs, which leaves you feeling like John Hurt just before l’il Bo alien burst out of his chest and ordered its breakfast. No question had to crash out in bed. The barest movement had my head and stomach scream out in perfect terrible unison. Only for me to wake around midnight with something of a temperature and my tummy doing somersaults. Ran briskly to the toilet and promptly puked my guts out into the sink. Constituency-wise the puke was pretty thick, so there I was with the tap running, having to pick out big chunks from the sinkhole to let the water run through. The carnage over I sat however groggily on the edge of the bath and thought, I’ve never went over a deadline before and I ain’t gonna start now. Like Clint Eastwood (the puker with no name) I crawled on all fours into my room and switched on my PC. I chewed on a couple of Cherry Menthol Airwaves to try and get rid of the acid taste in my mouth. I attached my script to an e-mail and sent off the script to those dear people in Tokyopop. Result! Ye cannae beat it.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Congelidum Cremum is Latin for ice-cream, by the way.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Out now from Panini/Marvel UK, Spectacular Spider-Man #128 by Jon Haward and m’self where our eponymous hero teams up with the Dynamic Defenders. ‘The Defenders’ was one comic I can genuinely say I loved reading as a wee boy. And wasn’t I the reverential fanboy when I met Steve Englehart, one of the original writers on the series, last summer in San Diego. So it just made sense on a cosmic scale to beg, plead, and bellow for the chance to put them in the mag. Dr Strange, Sub-Mariner, the Hulk, and Silver Surfer, I hope I was as true to that memory as I could’ve been. The Hulk typically gets all the best lines.

Nabbed the page from Big Jon’s website, where it's at:

Sunday, January 15, 2006

'Ello peeps. When I'm not searching t'internet for my latest Russian bride, I occasionally post some missive or other on a discussion group. So I may as well inflict my latest on you lot:

"One thing that particularly stood out was the statement that to be professional you have to make a living from it ['it' being working in comics]. I've recently worked for DC, Tokyopop, and Panini/Marvel UK, but I can assure you I am some way from earning a living from it. While I do earn money from this glorified 'hobby' of mine it worked out, last tax year, as less than a fifth of my earnings from my 'real' job. To be honest the people I know who make a living from it - especially the writers - are particularly few and far between. And the majority of this small bunch are either always skint and/or don't earn their crust from writing for comics exclusively alone. But of course the ones that do earn a good living are so busy and so in demand and so under pressure they use the blood from their ears as ink. Such is the way of all things I suppose."

Ok, you can all go back to watching 'The 6th Day' on Channel 5. Man, that Arnie can act. I love that 'big eye' expression of his like a hamster has just wandered up somewhere it shouldn't have...

Sunday, January 08, 2006

January is one of those slow dour months innit? Unloved by even the most pleasant of souls. January also means I'm working to deadline. I'm doing a script rewrite on the first volume of Otogi Zoshi for Tokyopop. The story revolves around a little rich girl Hikaru disguising herself as a boy to fight bandits. Yes, it's Manga, and it's such an endearing, bitter sweet story I've taken something of a shine to it.

By script rewrite I mean taking the translated script and sorting it out, embellishing it, where it needs sorting. Injecting a more natural feel to the dialogue. E.g., changing a line such as "I am a lobster" to "I'm a lobster, you dig?"...

Anyway the biggest thing I've had to bend my brain over is reading the original volume right to left (not the other way, which folks around here have kind of grown used to). I am getting the hang of it, but initially it did feel like someone had gone and changed the laws of physics on me.

Monday, January 02, 2006

To this day, it has never left me, I will never forget the first time I saw a Sontaran warrior. He took off his helmet to reveal a potato head. A feckin' potato head! I freaked; I bawled my little pre-pubescent eyes out. Have never quite been the same since.

Dr Who memories # 57