After nearly a decade working as a writer and editor in journalism, publicity, and comics publishing, shifting my skills to digital marketing copywriting has been a broadening experience. As a job, it utilizes all the same skills I’ve previously engaged as a wordsmith, but it calls on them in new and — sometimes — very different ways. And that’s a good thing: Diverse experience is essential to improvement. You could argue that continuing to write daily is the greatest way to improve, and I wouldn’t argue, but writing about subjects and in voices I’d otherwise never touch has forced a honing of my skills it’d be hard to replicate left to my own devices. Continue Reading “Resources for Copywriters”
While I haven’t delved into my favorite living writer George Saunders’ new book Lincoln in the Bardo — as Abraham Lincoln grieving his dead son seems a bit intense for a brand new dad — I’ve enjoyed reading interviews about his process going from expert short story writer to first time novelist. My wife giving birth has waylaid a more thorough examination of this Guardian article, but I wanted to save it here for future reference — for me and you, any writers or editors that love creative process advice as much as I do. Continue Reading “One of my favorite writers explains writing and writers”
I have a love/hate relationship with year end “Best Of” lists. I love them, because I’m curious to see what books, movies, TV shows, styles of yogurts, sweatpants, and cute puppy videos are among the year’s best and most loved. But I hate them because, as Powell’s Staff Picks Top Fives remind me, there are way too many good books that come out each year for me to possibly read a good amount of them, let alone read them all.
Back in 2010, knowing I couldn’t keep up with new releases well enough to do a decent “Best Of” list, I began simply listing all the books I read as a study in… myself, I guess. How much did I read? What did I read about? What time of year did I read most? This probably ends up only being interesting to me, but heck, I’ve been doing it for over half a decade now so I guess I’ll keep it up!
In my unending quest to continue improving as a writer and editor, I’ve been blogging haphazardly over the past two years when I come across great writing tips or storytelling resources. I love reading about writing and storytelling. It’s fascinating and enriching. I’ve witnessed things I’ve read come to life in my own work, improving my skills—you couldn’t ask for better results to time spent studying your craft. So, in the hope I’m not alone in this pilgrimage, I’ve tried to collect some those resources (plus, my thoughts) for others. An infographic about book facts created by Robert Brewer was part of the impetus behind all this additional study. Continue Reading “Recommended Storytelling and Comics Writing Resources”
For the past year, I’ve worked from home as the senior editor at Stela. Toiling away at the desk in my home office gave me unique insight into the day-to-day of the talented writers, artists, colorists, and letterers I work with regularly. Now, I’m taking it to the next level. Continue Reading “The Dawning of a New (Professional) Era”
In 2015, thanks to a very kind introduction from Marvel Talent Relations Manager Rickey Purdin, I was invited to be a guest at Comics Uncovered, an intimate aspiring comic creator seminar attached to Birmingham, UK’s International Comic Expo. I was being flown out to do portfolio reviews and hang out and talk comics—it seemed too good to be true. Feeling guilty about being flown across the globe and put up in a hotel in order to do a few hours of portfolio reviews, I suggested: “I can do a presentation or something. I want to earn my keep.” My gracious host Shane Chebsey*, the show organizer, was delighted to take me up on that offer, so I set about hastily putting together a presentation on a topic that I, as an editor, get asked about most frequently: breaking into comics. Thanks to the tireless talents in Dark Horse’s design department, my slapdash** ideas were stylishly and swiftly converted into a Powerpoint presentation and I headed to England to preach to a young, impressionable group of writers and artists. I think it all went pretty well, so I’ve taken the time to update my talk (trying to keep the conversational tone in which it was originally presented) and post it here in the hopes it can, in some small way, aid the burgeoning careers of any up-and-coming comic talent looking for some advice. Continue Reading “Breaking In: Advice on Starting a Career in Comics”
Well, it’s been a crazy year—what can I say? Movember 2016 approaches and it dawns on me that I never did a post recapping 2015’s fundraising efforts. Which is a shame, because 2015 was historic for the ol’ Ministry of Mustache Growth & Management. 2015 was the year we hit the secret goal I set for these teams years ago, never really sure we could ever do it, but hoping we one day could… we crested $100,000 in fundraising to help combat men’s cancer! Continue Reading “The Longest Overdue Movember Update Yet: 2015”
New York Times Bestselling author Fred Van Lente—who I’ve had the pleasure of working with on Resurrectionists, Brain Boy, Project Black Sky, new editions of his Action Philosophers and The Silencers, and a few other things—is, in my humble opinion, one of the finest writers in comics. If you’re looking for a script format to mimic, head to his website and check out his templates. As an editor, I love this format! It’s also one of the preferred formats of letterer extraordinaire Nate Piekos of Blambot! Continue Reading “Fred Van Lente’s Five Comic-Making Mistakes”
It was the sauciest of times, it was the cheesiest of times… The first ever Portland Pizza Week transpired this past week and it was delightful! Seemed like a cool thing to blog about after neglecting this space for far too long. Something to get me warmed up to the ol’ blogosphere again.
It was a fantastic week full of pizza, beer, friends, and good times! I hope it was a raucous success for all by-the-slice pie shops in town, as I certainly hope this becomes a recurring annual event. Continue Reading “Portland Pizza Week 2016”
Continuing my tradition of making a “Here’s What I Read Last Year” list instead of a “Best Books of the Past Year” list—I’m super envious of those folks who have the ability to consume loads of newly published content each year—here’s a list of what I read in 2015.