Ahhh…Spring is in the air with Summer quickly closing in. My role as Professor of Illustration at the prestigious Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) has just ended until school resumes in Fall. “What?” you ask…”You are a professor of Illustration, Rich?” Yes, yes I am! I also teach an elective course in Sequential Art/Comic Books! Do the google and check MIAD out. It is a terrific institute–been in Milwaukee for decades–and is one of the nation’s premiere schools for art.
But I digress. With my obligations to the school over for the next few months I am now steadfastly working on the sequel to my last graphic novel, F.A.R.M. SYSTEM! Top Shelf signed the contract for book 2 in February and I am very pleased to say that the entire book has now been scripted and I am presently done penciling 38 of the projected 178 pages! 15 of which are also fully inked. The book is on pace for an early 2024 release date.
“What’s the new book about, Rich?”
Why, I am glad that you asked! Book 2 will delve deeper into the machinations of Alex Ellison’s unique business of contracting super-heroes, and his contentious relationship with the hero, Armor Man, leader of the supergroup known as The Revengers. A vicious court battle takes place between Alex and Armor Man–AM accusing Alex of all sorts of illegal business practices, including his sanctioning of a dangerous new designer drug called “The Boost!”
Book 2 introduces several exciting new characters and revisits a few favorites from Book 1. The book further develops and parallels what we see every day in the world of professional sports–the desperate (sometimes dangerous) lengths some go to to achieve fortune and fame…
Book 2 gets NASTY!!! You will see one of the most vicious, out-of-control and devastating attacks in comics history and the price all sides suffer as a result.
I say no more at this time.
In other news… Whilst I work on Book 2 I will also be attending a few conventions this summer. I am very very happy to be returning the amazing SMALL PRESS EXPO in beautiful Bethesda, Maryland this Sept 9th and 10th! It has been well over a decade since I last attended this wonderful showcase for independent artists and publishers. I won the coveted Ignatz Award there for my graphic novel, THREE FINGERS, back ion 2003. It’ll be great sitting with my colleagues at Top Shelf and seeing a lot of old friends! I’ll also be attending the MIGHTY CON in Milwaukee thisSeptember 2nd. And I’m also looking to attend the DALLAS FAN FESTIVAL October 20-22nd.