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What’s new at Phoenix?

Hey all, I’m back from Spring Break and am a bit more tan, slightly rested (but quickly losing ground on that front from long nights since returning) and am more than ready to get things rolling once again at Phoenix Productions!

I thought it wise to share a little of what I’ve been up to as a bit of a teaser for what you can expect in the forthcoming couple of months. I’ll skip the art for this installment and let you dwell in the mind’s eye.

INVENTORY: As promised, I ordered a round of second printings of HEROES NOW: PATRIOT, the COMMENTARY EDITION of the same and STRANGE TIMES #1. Hopefully that will carry me for a while. The printer did great; the books look fantastic.

HOLOGRAM: William Caddell is getting more and more into the drivers seat with his long COVID symptoms. We got issue 4 out, and the next 8 issues are already scripted and waiting for his magic to happen. William juggles work, life and a number of other artistic projects, so I’m content to be patient as we tell Joe’s story. Trust me when I say that there’s a LOT more to come.

THE LIGHT: I already broke the news that original run artist Anthony Gray is back to do a full-size comic treatment of Capital City’s crimefighter, so let’s share a little more: The script is finished! If I can count correctly, the story will be 29 pages long…meaning we’re looking at something around a 32-36 page book. We’ll be continuing the investigation of our heroes’ lives 30+ years on from their original appearances, and The Light has seen his share of action. How much tread is left on the tires of a guy who’s been fist-fighting baddies for that long? We shall find out! In the meantime, Anthony has already completed character treatments for the cast of this tale — they look great!

STRANGE TIMES: Alan Groening and I have been in contact about a second issue, but other projects have been higher up in the batting order. The dust is clearing, however, so I’ll likely begin to dive back in on our catch-all anthology. It certainly will be a different story than STRANGE TIMES #1! I should also add that both he and I would LOVE to see new faces join in the STRANGE TIMES fun! If you have a story or artwork to share, let me know and we’ll make room at the table.

HEROIC: And here, my friends, is where the majority of my post-Spring Break time has gone.

  • HEROIC #1 is almost complete. Accelerator co-creator and artist Scott McClung is bringing the former Jen Warner back for a “Heroes Now” spin around the track in her “mom sneakers,” and I’m so excited to share it with you! It was a bit of a writing challenge as I dearly wanted to write an all-ages hero story, one that my 9-year-old Wonder Woman-loving daughter could share with me. After writing stories of turmoil, strife and questionable ethics, writing an engaging straight hero story was kinda hard! Scott is nearly complete with the pages, though, and I believe will be contributing the cover. It’s so much fun to be working with him again! Past that, we have a GREAT pin-up from Guido-Visión featuring one of the heroes that we haven’t seen revived yet….an article from the Capital City Crier…and I’m crossing my fingers that a surprise guest artist will be able to contribute as well!
  • HEROIC #2 is already underway. The cover art is complete, and I need to add appropriate trade dress to finish it up. And even more exciting…Tony Lorenz and I are going to keep the Patriot story going! That’s right, we’re picking up the story where HEROES NOW: PATRIOT left off. In addition, I’m working to add another pin-up or two.

OTHER STUFF: I’m toying with another project, one emphasizing the FAN in fanzine. I haven’t worked on it since returning from Spring Break, but it’s a personal project…a passion project if you will, so there’s no rush. Lastly, I’m starting to get the convention itch…not sure if I can scratch it…

There you have it: Productive and busy times! The storytelling has been fun, and my artist compatriots constantly amaze me with how they bring the characters to life. The stories come from a different frame of mind, but they also have a level of depth and interconnectedness that is a lot of fun to work through.

I hope you have been enjoying what you’ve seen thus far…there’s so much more on the way!

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