Starburst Magazine issue 383 and MUCH MORE!
Starburst Magazine issue 383 is now on sale in stores across the UK, directly with free shipping from the Starburst Magazine website and in an interactive version for iPads. This issue features my column Adventures On Alternative Earths and my new comic strip Krampusnacht, illustrated by the dancefloor-demolishing Simon Perrins.
In my column this month I recommend Lee Robson and Bryan Coyle’s Com.x graphic novel Babble, in which researchers trying to discover the forgotten universal language of Babel unearth something altogether more sinister. I also recommend the third instalment of British legend Bryan Talbot’s Grandville series, Grandville: Bête Noire, published by Jonathan Cape in the UK and Dark Horse in the USA. Since reading Accent UK’s graphic novel Whatever Happened To Thaddeus Mist?, created by a variety of writers and artists, I’d befriended the book’s editor Owen Michael Johnson, because I’m quite convinced that he’s one of a handful of writers from his generation that are going to break new ground with the medium of comics. Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips’ Incognito: The Classified Edition was an easy choice to recommend, being the crime/superhero work from one of the finest team of comic-book creators ever to have lived! Finally, I recommend new street press comic magazine Off Life, subsisting of contributions by some of the UK’s most influential, talented and sometimes underrated comic creators.
My comic strip with Simon Perrins, Krampusnacht, is an unofficial sequel to last year’s A Krampus Carol with Jack Fallows. I genuinely hope to create a Krampus strip every Christmas now for the rest of my life. Perrins, in addition to being a damned fine artist, is also excellent company on a night out. After meeting him, VERY BRIEFLY, for the first time at Thought Bubble comics festival recently, he messaged me the next morning to ask “Did you kiss me last night, or was that just a beautiful dream?” I can’t remember well enough to answer that question with anything resembling honesty, but the fact that I didn’t wake with two black eyes is testament to what a gent Mr Perrins is. Go hire him for illustration work, now. But don’t kiss him.
If you own an iPad you can now also read the second issue of INFINITY for free, from Toyko-based publisher Panel Nine. I contribute a Going Digital column to INFINITY and in this issue take a look at Panel Nine’s new app The Certified Hunt Emerson (which is brilliant!), Madefire’s kinetically-charged Mono and Treatment comics, and the Comixology version of Aaron Alexovich and Drew Rausch’s ELDRITCH!. I also interviewed Madefire founder and CCO about Madefire and their new brand of motion comics, of which he said: “You only have to see an iPad to know it’s a no-brainer, but convincing hard-core comic fans that’s the case is another story. In some circles Motion Comics is a term that provokes scorn, but mostly – we think – because it’s a passive watching experience. With Madefire you’re still reading, and interacting with the pages. You, as the reader, dictate the pace.”
You can now buy print and digital versions of my literary Gothic-Horror comic with Karen Yumi Lusted, La Belle Dame Sans Merci, and my Mature Readers horror-comedy anthology BLACKOUT, created with Jack Fallows, Phillip Marsden, Andy Waugh, Joe Whiteford and Mike Barnes. LBDSM is the first issue of a four-part series that combines Romanticism with feminism to ask the question of where femme fatales come from. BLACKOUT is intended for adults only and contains booze, death-by-misadventure, necrophilia, cannibalism and suicide.
Disconnected Press have published my comic with Martin Simmonds All Roads Lead To Hell in their anthology Disconnected 2, which you can buy here. The cover to Disconnected 2, by artist Matthew Soffe, is even based on All Roads Lead To Hell! Honestly, this 8-page strip probably represents my ambitions for the future better than anything that I’ve ever worked on, so I really hope that you’ll find a way to read it. Martin and I have BIG plans, the kind of plans where nobody gets out alive and nobody reads to the end without being scarred for life.
The Bleed magazine had nice things to say about La Belle Dame Sans Merci. You should now be able to pick up a print edition of The Bleed issue 2 in the North-East of England for free, hopefully with a digital edition to follow, containing my short story The Heart of Things. I also found this trailer online for a new horror film that I’ve been working on with Mitsuko Studios. Honestly, the teaser trailer gives away NOTHING, but I’m told that these are the best actors and filmmakers that we’ve ever worked with, so I’m looking forward to seeing the results. I took a couple of runs at an original idea by Antoni McVay, so the story isn’t completely my own, but from his vision I pretty much plucked the elements that I could identify with and rewrote the story into something that I could empathise with. That means unrequited romance, drugs, booze and unhappy endings. I’m sure the film has changed since my version of the script, but I think there’ll be a lot in there that I recognise.
Oh, and Thought Bubble was a massive success. Thanks for asking! I met everybody in the world that has ever created a comic, including the awesome Hannah Berry, whose disturbing graphic novel Adamtine was criminally underrated and you should seek it out immediately. The real highlight of Thought Bubble though was meeting Melinda Gebbie, artist of the awesome Lost Girls. We gave this controversial legend and creator of the pornographic and potentially obscene Lost Girls our own bastion of filth and controversy BLACKOUT, and she loved it! We spent the rest of the night drinking with her and hearing stories far too lewd to share with the internet. Here’s proof: