Bit of advance notice that I’ll be appearing at the annual Oswestry Lit Fest in March, where (on Saturday 19th) I’ll be doing back to back talks – the first aimed at a younger audience and focusing largely on my role as Head Writer and Script Supervisor on the hit CITV animated show Matt Hatter Chronicles, and the second a broader more comics focused (all-ages) session, which will focus largely, though not exclusively, on my work on Transformers. Both will include a lot of behind-the-scenes visual material, script to screen in the case of Matt Hatter and script to page in the case of the comics talk. I’ll also have copies of my work with me for sale – including the recent Kung Fu Panda and How To Train Your Dragon digest graphic novels. For a full programme of events, including mine, click here. To view the Oswestry Lit Fest site, click here, or check out their Facebook page here.
It’s no secret I’m a huge Marvel Comics fan – always have been, always will be. And ever since Marvel began its prestige Marvel Masterworks line, which reprints all the core/founding Marvel titles from 1961 onwards, it’s been a little ambition of mine to actually be a featured creator in one. I think back to the kid I was, waiting for his Mighty World of Marvel or Spider-Man Weekly to drop on the mat once a week, or pedalling around to various secondhand book stores that had the Holy Grail of actual full colour Marvel US comics available (dedicated comic shops were a good ten years off at this point), and I’m still filled with wonder that I actually got work in the comics biz at all (and, even more amazing, make a living doing it for the last 30 years or so). So anyway, long story short, I couldn’t quite figure how long I’d have to wait for the Masterworks line to catch up to the point in the late 80s and early 90s when I was writing a fair bit for Marvel US. But here we are, with the just announced volume 2 of Ms. Marvel, to which I made a tiny contribution back in the day. Ms. Marvel was cancelled with issue #23, with #24 only appearing much later, in the anthology title Marvel Super-Heroes (#10). There was even a partially written (by regular writer Chris Claremont) and drawn issue #25, which – of all things – was building up to the classic confrontation between Ms. Marvel and Rogue, which saw Ms. Marvel’s powers transferred to Rogue permanently (the aftermath of which appeared in the equally classic Avengers Annual #10). Anyway, for some reason, Claremont didn’t want (or maybe wasn’t asked, I don’t know the ins and outs) to provide new script to finish off that curtailed final bit of the saga, so Marvel Super-Heroes editor, Rob Tokar tapped me to pick up the tail end of the story (as written by Claremont) and join the dots to the climatic battle with Rogue atop the Golden Gate Bridge. This was also something of a dream job – as I was immeasurably influenced as a writer by Claremont’s epic run on X-Men, so getting to pick up this particular baton was a huge deal for me. And daunting at the same time! But, I got my head down and tided up as best I could, and the result made its way (together with the extant bit of #25) into Marvel Super-Heroes #11. And now, finally, that little bit of Furman story has found its way into Ms. Marvel Masterworks vol 2 (or vol 234 if, like me, you collect the direct market numerical variant editions). You’re going to have to wait a while to see it. It doesn’t come out until July 2016 – these books are solicited a long way in advance. But nevertheless, there it is – my name will be in a Marvel Masterworks edition — finally. For me personally, a career milestone reached!
On Saturday October 17th, I’ll be heading to the Leamington Comic Con 2015, in Leamington Spa, armed with my usual array of signed stuff. I’ll be meeting & greeting all day, as will my Transformers Regeneration One co-collaborator Andrew Wildman, and we’ll be doing a panel/question & answer session together at some point. As well as comics and script/comic packs for sale, I have more FREE To The Death poster (see previous blog entry) to hand out & sign, plus a little excerpt from the series itself, a sneak peak at what’s in store for 2016 from myself and Geoff Senior. For more information on LCC & tickets, etc, check out their Facebook page here.
Yep, only days to go to Auto Assembly 2015 now, and here’s a little bonus for attendees. It’s no secret that Geoff Senior and I have been working on our own special project, and here it is! Well, it’s not quite here, but the promo poster for it is. And what’s more, it’s FREE, GRATIS and N’OWT OUT OF YOUR POCKET. Get ready for TO THE DEATH, mine and Geoff’s all-new sci-fi opus, which will debut in 2016. As well as handing out (and signing) posters, I’ll have a little teaser sequence (unlettered) from To The Death running on my laptop for passersby to gawk at. And as we get closer and closer to the launch next year, we’ll be leaking out more details, more stuff, and generally ramping up the anticipation to fever pitch. Keep an eye on this blog for more details. Note: I have 300 posters to hand out, so it’s strictly one per attendee and on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. I’ll be holding back 100 for Sunday, so don’t fret if that’s your only day there. You’ll still be in with a shot of grabbing one!
Less than a week to go before Auto Assembly 2015 in Birmingham, and the full schedule of panels and events is now up. In terms of my participation, above and beyond my usual table in the main hall, where I’ll be signing and selling a few bits and pieces (signed RG1 Script/Comic packs, comics & graphic novels, etc), here’s what’s what (and when):
Saturday August 22nd:
12 noon – Transformers UK retrospective with myself and Andrew Wildman, where we’ll be chatting and reminiscing about the halcyon days of Marvel UK and how we both then kind of graduated to Marvel US (and a long stint on the US Transformers comic).
8pm – Andrew and I will be back on stage to judge the ever-wonderful AA Cosplay competition. Trust me, some of the amazing outfits have to be seen to be believed.
9pm – The Script Reading. Once again, I’ve been roped in… I mean, enlisted to script this Auto Assembly mainstay, featuring the vocal talents of special guests, Sumalee Montano, James Horan and Peter Spellos. Expect the usual distinct lack of respect for any and every corner of the Transformers Universe.
Sunday August 23rd:
12 noon – The Fall of Dreamwave and the Rise of IDW, a visual tour through some of the amazing (rare/unseen) art that kind of fell between the cracks as Dreamwave nosedived and IDW picked up the ball for what has become the most spectacular run of Transformers comics in the brand’s 30-year-plus history. Featuring the work of Alex Milne, Don Figueroa, Joe Ng, EJ Su and many more.
Hope to see you at one or more of the above!
Just back from the rather excellent Dublin Comic Con, and thought I’d share a video of the event put together by the good people of Pulse College. Had a great time at what was a smoothly run and very friendly event. Highly recommended!
After a couple of packed convention years, 2015 has been deliberately convention-lite for me. Lot going on work-wise and just enjoying my weekends down here on the Kent coast. But… it’s all systems go for August with not one but TWO convention appearances to shout about.
First up is Dublin Comic Con (Aug 8th-9th) at the Convention Centre in, um, Dublin. One of my favourite cities, so no way was I saying no to this one. Plus, I have it on good authority that it’s a great and growing convention, with guests and dealers galore. I’ll be joining the likes of David Lloyd, Erik Larsen and homegrown talent in the shape of Declan Shalvey and Stephen Mooney, plus many others (from comics and TV/film). I’ll be doing the usual round of panels, one dedicated to 30 Year of Transformers, Q&As, and I’ll be at my table with RG1 Comic/Script packs for sale. Pop by and say hello if you can. For more details and to buy tickets you can check out DCC’s site here.
Then it’s the turn of Auto Assembly, in Birmingham, Europe’s biggest dedicated Transformers convention (Aug 21st-23rd), a two or so day extravaganza of all things robots in disguise. Sadly, this is the last AA for the foreseeable, so do try and come along (especially if you’ve never been before). It’ll be a feast of guests, panels and events, including the amazing cosplay competition (always worth seeing) and the live voice actor drama. There’ll be a host of Transformers comics creators in evidence, and I’ll be doing a panel or two, one of which is my illustrated tour through the fall of Dreamwave and the rise of IDW, featuring some amazing (and unpublished) art. I’ll be bringing plenty of stuff for sale or just signing whatever’s thrust under my nose. Don’t miss out on what’s destined to be its own little Transformers landmark event. For more information or to book tickets check the Auto Assembly website here.