Friday, November 18, 2005

Writing, Reading, Observing

It has been a hectic week, but what else is new. I haven't written as much as I would have liked, but I have been adding to the NaNoWriMo book just about every day. I’m having fun with it, as I’ve said, and surprising myself with what I’m putting to page. The story is becoming more personal than I was expecting. Hopefully, a pot of coffee will help me to a long writing session into very early tomorrow morning.

I finished up E.E. Knight's Dragon Champion a couple of days ago and I'm polishing up my review. Overall reaction, I liked it, but I'll go into more detail when I finish and post the review.

I also read All Star Superman #1 this week and thought it was just about everything a Superman comic book should be. Even if many of Quietly's faces look like they are sucking a lemon, his overall layouts and details are amazing. Too bad it will be 2 months until the next one hits shelves. Speaking of Superman, the trailer for Superman Returns ran during Smallville last night, which only left me wanting to see more. Smallville itself was good, even if it seemed like a big commercial for Ford. Even if resolution always hits about 8:43 every episode, they are delivering some good Kryptonian back-story, focusing more on Clark, enough on Lex, and still a little too much on Chloe. I think Jor-El has somehow inhabited Lionel Luthor.

Continuing on the comic book theme, I have to say, I’ve been impressed with Image Comics output lately, both current and future. I'm sure I'm not reinventing the wheel by stating this, but they are no longer the splash-page in your face artist turned writers they were when they started up in rebelling to Marvel & DC. Sure Spawn is still ongoing and Larson's Savage Dragon is picking up again, but they are doing some interesting things there, in addition.

Rex Mundi is one that comes immediately to mind – an alternate history dealing with a powerful church and the Holy Grail. The art is good, the story is deep, mysterious and often spooky with a minimal supernatural element. The only problem is the somewhat erratic shipping schedule.

GØDLAND is another one. Cosmic superheroics in the Kirby tradition! Seriously, I have the first issue and liked it a lot, Joe Casey is telling a fun story here. Scioli’s art just explodes off the page. I've got issues 3 and 4, but can't seem to get my hands on the second issue. For anybody considering this thing, the whole first issue is posted for free at Newsarama. (Thanks for triggering that memory Mahesh!)

Fear Agent, by Rick Remender, Tony Moore and Cory Walker has only one issue on the shelves right now, but I liked it a lot. So far this is SciFi adventure with an Indiana Jones like feel. On both GØDLAND and Fear Agent, the coloring is spectacular, too.

Another book coming out next year that looks interesting is The Portent, described as "a sweeping fantasy epic" launching in February.

Here is a page with a bunch of previews of their comics. They have also recently started a great all-Image-encompassing blog.

Lastly, this week and part of last week the blogosphere (at least the FSF portion I consider myself to be a part of) has been caught up in what has come to be known as the Venom Cock controversy. I’ve been observing this from a distance with some morbid curiosity. As a person with aspirations of becoming a successful, published writer who also spends a great deal of their time reading and reviewing fantasy and science fiction, I've found myself in an odd place on this one. Any large group of people eventually becomes divided into cliques, this is only a natural thing. Between cliques a natural "they said" and "No THEY said" thing will develop. The result of all this, of course, is that Janine Cross, the author of Touched by Venom, will likely see a nice increase in the sales of her book.

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