?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous 10 | Next 10

Jun. 4th, 2012

Wickline's Wise Words (06/04/2012)

May. 28th, 2012

Wickline's Wise Words (05/28/2012)

May. 21st, 2012

Wickline's Wise Words (05/21/2012)

May. 11th, 2012

Conventions 2012

I have been asked by a few people of late if I’ll be attending different conventions this year. I figured it would be easier to make a blanket statement. I am at this point not planning on attending any conventions this year. That may change this summer if necessity dictates my attendance at Comic-Con, etc… but the plan is to take this year off.

I’ve always been pretty open so I won’t change that now. The decision to take the year off comes from a few things. First is the fact I’ve spent the last year or so working on the Lucius Fogg novels, so I don’t have as much new comic material to promote. That is changing now as I have taken on a few new projects at Zenescope and started a couple creator-owned ones as well. Second, and in this economy I think you’ll understand, with my wife currently unemployed the financial demands of conventions are hard to justify. And third, I have a minor health issue I am dealing with. Nothing to concern anyone, but it is something I am focused on at the moment.

It saddens me to miss the shows. Phoenix Comic-con, Emerald City Con and Long Beach Comic-con are three of the best, hands down. And I’ve done San Diego for sixteen years straight, so I didn’t make this decision easily. I greatly enjoy going to these shows and visiting with all of you and it is my intent to return to all of these shows in 2013 and hopefully a few more. In the mean time, please keep an eye out for my new comics from Zenescope “Call of Wonderland” and “Grimm Fairy Tales: Angel” as well as my e-novel Lucius Fogg: Deadly Creatures.

All the best,

Dan W.

Feb. 6th, 2012

LUCIUS FOGG TO HELP HERO INITIATIVE

When I was eleven years old, I stood in the basement of the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles and met the great Jack Kirby. I left that show knowing that I wanted to be an artist like him. Sadly, I couldn’t draw like Jack but I could write, and thirty years later I make my living telling stories in comic books and e-novels. Men like Jack, Gene Colan, John Buscema and many others built the comic industry from the ground up through hard work, long hours and tireless dedication. But they and their modern day counterparts work as freelancers without medical benefits, retirement plans or even guaranteed salary. Sometimes these amazing creators have a downturn in luck and that is where the Hero Initiative steps in. Hero is there to help comic creators get through the bad times.

I have been a supporter of the Hero Initiative for years. I wrote and put together The Unusual Suspects, a graphic novel published by Top Cow and containing the art of Ben Templesmith, Nat Jones, Tone Rodriguez and many others. All the proceeds went to Hero. When I played a corpse on Dexter, I gave Hero the “blood-soaked” shirt off my back to auction off. And last year I taught a writing seminar at the Phoenix Comic Con where all of the entrance fees went to the charity. I believe in the Hero Initiative and I’m always looking for new ways to help. Which leads me to this announcement:

Purchase the e-novel Lucius Fogg: Deadly Creatures before the end of February at the link below and $1.00 from every purchase will be donated to The Hero Initiative.

Deadly Creatures is a noir detective story crossed with the supernatural set in 1950s New York. Jimmy Doyle, leg man for occultist Lucius Fogg, gets pulled into a world of underground fight clubs that pit werewolf against werewolf for the amusement of the rich and powerful. One reviewer called the book: “One part Chandler, one part Stout, with a whole heap of Mignola drizzled on top.” For your $2.99 you get the 75,000 word e-novel (printed it would be 300 pages) in three formats: Mobi (Kindle), Epub (Nook and others) and PDF. These formats will allow you to read the book on any e-reader, mobile device or computer. And as a bonus, you’ll get the first six chapters of the second e-novel in the series, Lucius Fogg: Malicious Intent.

So get yourself a new e-book to read and help out a great cause. What could be better than that?

Deadly Creatures 

Dec. 31st, 2011

OUT WITH THE OLD

The New Year is coming. It’s already rolled halfway across the nation and it’s speeding towards Los Angeles as I write this. I find myself in a somewhat melancholy mood this evening. Fifteen years ago I spent New Year’s at a party with friends and family having the time of my life. The turning of the calendar meant new goals and achievements to strive for. Ten years ago I spent an intimate New Year’s with someone I loved very much. I looked a little less at the future but was still happy to turn the page to 2002. Five years ago I sat in a Jacuzzi with my wife celebrating the end of my first year as a full-time writer. With an hour to go in 2011, my wife sits down stairs reading a book while I do what I spend most of my time doing, typing on my computer. It has me wondering what my realistic goals are for next year and what achievements if any I have for the last twelve months.

The good of this year were definitely things I should be excited about. I released my first and second novels electronically. People are slowly becoming aware of Lucius Fogg and Jimmy Doyle and with any luck over the six book series more and more readers will come aboard. I had an old short story of mine turned into a European television episode and I got to write the script for it. I look forward to seeing the episode itself soon. I taught a writing class in Phoenix and raised some money for the Hero Initiative while doing it. And I had more comic and short stories published.

The good/bad came from reconnecting with my best friend, someone I’ve known for twenty-six years. I am thankful to have her back in my life. The bad was the passing of her mother a few weeks ago at far too young of an age. I was glad to be there to help her in her time of mourning, but it reminds me just how short life is.

And other bad was watching as many of my friends lost their jobs, including my wife. Seeing the people I love struggle to make their bills or feed their family. All this heaped on with frustration of watching the insanity and greed of congress. Seeing people wanting what is best for themselves or best for their ideology and not what is best for everyone. If I wrote what has happened in Washing in the last few years into a book, the critics would pan me and say my villains are unbelievable.

I started 2011 with hope. I honestly don’t feel much of that left. The belief that it was going to be the year that everything was going to click. That I would come out of it with enough writing projects to justify the years and years of hard work I’ve put in and to give my family the sense of security that lets us sleep at night. I start 2012 with the same desires. To sell enough copies of Lucius Fogg to pay the bills. To get enough comic / script work to not have to pinch every penny. That the wife finds a job with good benefits and that she enjoys.

But because I sit here with the uncertain income of a freelancer and no health insurance watching the country argue over the most inane topics while the economy spirals out of control, I can’t find the same hope I mustered up last year. All I’ve got is a quiet desperation that I just have to keep trying, keep pushing. Just keep going because in truth, I don’t know anything else to do.

Dan Wickline
12/31/2011



Thank you for reading. If you liked my writing, you may be interested in my new novel. Click the link below to find out more.




Site Meter

Oct. 1st, 2011

A THOUSAND WHISPERS

A thousand whispers are louder than one scream. That should be the rallying cry of the new digital era of independence. The advances in technology have created so many new avenues for creativity that it allows just about everyone to not only find their muse but gives them the ability to release it to the world. But the ease of access is also a double-edged sword. There’s no filter system to weed out the good from the bad. Nothing that tells the ‘not-ready-for-primetime’ that they need more work or anything that shines a spotlight on the hidden treasure.

As a writer, technology has given me this new path to putting out my work. I sat down and wrote a novel. I did a big part of it live on Twitter to help build an audience then I did the rest in private until I had a finished, polished novel that I was ready to sell the world. I shopped it around a bit to agents, but the literary print industry is so difficult to break into that if it was my only option, I probably would have put Lucius Fogg into a drawer and moved on to something else. But I could electronically publish it myself. With the advent of the Kindle, Nook, Kobo and iPad I didn’t need to find a publishing house. I could make digital files of the book and list it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble or even just sell it directly from my website. This gives me complete artistic freedom to write what I want and how often I want. I just have to put it out there and find an audience.

And there is the speed bump on the cosmic highway to success, finding an audience. You put the work out there for the world to see then realize that no one is looking. So you start shouting to anyone who will listen. But you’re not the only one shouting. Every other author who is doing the same thing is standing right next to you trying to get the attention on them. And you realize that you are but one tiny ant in the hill and no amount of shouting will change that. And the truth is, I’m just not that comfortable screaming.

There is also the other side of the story, the readers. How many times have you found a book, comic, television series that you really like only to discover that it’s been cancelled? It’s only going to get worse now. That indie author you’ve really grown to love has to pay his mortgage and can’t justify spending the hundred plus hours on the next novel if he’s only going to sell fifty copies. But you can change that. You can make a difference. You can help make sure that next novel is made. That is the amazing part of the new digital era… you can be more than just a reader, you can be a partner. For every quick review you put up, every Facebook mention, every Twitter comment, you help spread the word about a book you like and help build the audience, in return you’ll get what everyone wants from something they like… more.

Fogg is still new to the market and just getting started, but I don’t want to shout. It’s just not effective. I also don’t want this character to get lost in the sea of mediocrity that’s the fallout from the digital revolution. I want to write novel after novel with Lucius and Jimmy investigating the most bizarre and twisted cases I can come up with. To do that, I need partners. I need people who like my stories and are willing to tell their friends. To comment on Amazon, link on Facebook or Tweet to the world. I won’t need to shout if you are willing to whisper. Become one of ‘Fogg’s Whispers’. Help me prove that a thousand whispers are louder than one scream.


Dan Wickline
10/01/2011



Thank you for reading. If you liked my writing, you may be interested in my new novel. Click the link below to find out more.




Site Meter

Aug. 10th, 2011

OPEN LETTER TO WASHINGTON

I’m not a political guy, but I know enough about politics to know when it’s not working. What the nation has seen this year has been nothing short of disgusting. People openly ignoring the facts and pandering to their base in hopes of currying favor for future elections. Senators and congressmen diving in front of cameras so they can spout the latest set of talking points geared to get a reaction from their constituents. All the while, the country slips further and further into economic ruin. The only thing we’re missing is the metaphorical fiddler.

It’s time for some truths to be laid out for you. None of you have a mandate of the people. None of you are speaking for America as a whole. At best you represent six out of every ten people in the area you come from. That means at least four out of every ten people didn’t want you for the job. But you are there for all of the people you represent and should keep that in mind when you are deciding on what’s best for the country. The extreme ends of your party are going to vote for you anyway, it’s the people in the middle that have to be swayed.

That said, there needs to be some massive changes in how things are done and they need to start now. Common sense things to be enacted at a time where sense seems to be anything but common. These are things that will show not only the American people, but the world at large that Washington is serious about fixing our economy and not just stuck in the same political quagmire.

1) The President needs to call congress back to Washington. When things are bad at our jobs, we don’t get to take vacations. Show the country that it matters by being at your desk not in your vacation villa drinking a mimosa. Cancel all unnecessary travel and push aside all non-crucial business that doesn’t pertain to the economy and job growth.

2) When congress returns, you need to pass a bill stating that the pay of all member of congress will be reduced in relations to the unemployment rate. For every full percentage point the country is above seven percent, salaries will be reduced by twenty percent and that money will be fed into the unemployment system. If the unemployment rate is nine percent then forty percent of congressional salaries is pulled and given to unemployment. You need to feel the same pain as the people you represent.

3) No more bi-partisan committees that spend all their time arguing. No Super-congress to come up with cuts. We need experts dealing with this and since the majority of elected officials in Washington are lawyers whose specialty is arguing regardless of the truth or facts, then none of them count. Put together groups of real experts to specifically look at Defense spending, Social Security, Medicare, Welfare and the tax code. Give them legitimate and equal goals to find through closing loop holes, improving efficiency and ending outdate or unnecessary projects. And once these cuts and changes are decided upon, approve them without argument.

4) Stay off the airwaves. This constant bickering between the two sides is not only embarrassing but is causing the majority of unrest and volatility in the market. Go into your offices and do your jobs. Just because the media have twenty-four hour news cycles to fill doesn’t mean you have to provide the content. If you are out there telling the world how we are all going to hell and it’s the other guys fault, all we’ll hear is we’re going to hell and you didn’t do anything to stop it.

5) No more riders. Put a moratorium on attachments to bills that muddy up what the legislation is trying to do. This is not the time for you to try and jam your personal objectives down the countries throat. If it’s a bill to extend unemployment benefits then there should not be a rider cutting funding to Planned Parenthood. You want that, then make it a bill onto itself and get it passed on its own merits. If your legislation is truly what the country wants then it will pass without you trying to sneak it in the back door.

6) You must accept there are no more sacred cows. Everything is on the table and must be looked at to find the best way to fix the economy. This means Social Security, Defense, Medicare and even raising taxes. We all must be willing to do our part. That’s how this country was founded, through compromise and hard work, why should it be any different today?

This country has always been strongest when we stand together. As elected officials, you are supposed to represent the best of us. We should be proud that you are there with our vote. Your ideology should guide you with ideas, not make you so rigid you can’t compromise. You are there to do what is best for all of America. From the guy who doesn’t have a dollar to the one who has too many to count. The benefits of government should be the same for everyone and the cost should affect each of us the same. It’s your job to make this country better, safer and a place where we can all thrive. It’s time for you to step up and show that you deserve to be in Washington… before the voters show you that you don’t.


Dan Wickline
8/10/2011




Thank you for reading. If you liked my writing, you may be interested in my new novel. Click the link below to find out more.




Site Meter

Jul. 14th, 2011

ME, MY FATHER AND GENE COLAN

I started reading comic books when I was very young. I’d get so wrapped up in the stories I would often spend the entire afternoon quietly reading in my room. This made my parents very happy as you can imagine. I’d read them over and over, cover to cover. I could tell you what a character said on each page, what Stan Lee had said in his Soapbox column and of course, I knew every creator involved in all the comics I owned. One of my favorite comics was Daredevil (still is to this day) and my first favorite artist was Gene Colan.

I was too young to explain why I liked Colan’s work. Words like ‘fluidity’ and ‘ethereal’ were not in my still growing vocabulary. I just liked the way he made Daredevil and Black Widow look. But there was something else. This was only the second person I had ever come across named Gene. That was the same name as my father!

I already thought of my father as somehow being loosely tied to the comic industry. He was a printing press operator and I knew comics got printed on a press. The fact he made boxes for things like Farmer John Bacon and California Coolers didn’t matter to me. I knew that if need be, he could print comic books and that was way cool.

Colan, like many of the artists of his day, worked insane hours producing multiple pages a day so he could keep food on the table for his family. He would take projects under pseudonyms so he could work for more than one company at a time. As an artist there was no sick time or paid leave. Vacations came out of your own pocket.

This was a work ethic I had only seen one other place, from my father. He never took sick days. I don’t mean rarely, I mean ever. And he saved his vacations for when a major project around the house needed to be done. He worked whatever shift they needed: days, swing-shift, graveyard, and took any overtime offered. Some nights he would leave for work before I got home from school and arrived home just as I was leaving the next day.

I became a writer because I knew I could never draw like Gene Colan, but I wanted to tell stories that had the same kind of effect on people today that Daredevil had on me as a kid. And I knew from watching my father that success would only come through hard work and dedication.

I got to meet Gene once, briefly at a convention. I told him how much his work meant to me and how I’d always think of Daredevil as drawn by him. He was gracious and friendly and almost uncomfortable with the praise. I let him move on to his other fans, and there were many.

When my father retired my brother and I had the silly idea of throwing him a roast. Most roasts you see on television have a dais half filled with ringers to make the night go well. We had no ringers, what we did have was person after person wanting to get up and tell a funny story that involved my father. And those who couldn’t make it out sent letters with tales for my brother and I to read to the party. How many non-famous people do you think could be the subject of a successful roast?

As Gene got older, his health began to fail and his ability to work diminished. An organization called the Hero Initiative stepped in to help him as they have with many other creators. Since learning of them, I have done a handful of things to help raise money for their cause. It seemed like a sincere way to say thank you to Gene and the other creators that so influenced my childhood. I hope to do more.

On June 23rd I was nervously sitting at my computer failing to get any work done. My father was in the hospital for the fourth time this year. He had developed issues with his heart and now they were saying he had a minor stroke. I wondered how any kind of stroke could be called minor. While waiting for a phone call to tell me his status, I saw the first tweet with bad news. Gene Colan had died. I felt the floor drop out from under me. In my mind alone, Gene and my father were linked. I had just lost one of my heroes and it made me realize how soon I may be losing another.

The comic industry has moved on from mourning Gene to talk of Comic-con. My father has been home a few days and is improving. Both of them have been in my thoughts a lot lately. I know I wouldn’t be who I am without their influence. I won’t get to see Gene Colan again, but I’m trying to come up with something new to do for the Hero Initiative in his honor. I can spend more time with my father though. When I saw him last, I told him I’d be back in a day or two. He smiled and said: “Don’t worry about it, I know you have work to do.”

Dan Wickline
7/14/2011

Thank you for reading. If you liked my writing, you may be interested in my new novel. Click the link below to find out more.




Site Meter

Jul. 12th, 2011

LUCIUS FOGG MAKES JUMP TO E-READERS

Comic creator Dan Wickline (1001 Arabian Nights: The Adventures of Sinbad, ShadowHawk, 30 Days of Night: Spreading the Disease) announces the release of his first novel. The character of paranormal detective Lucius Fogg made his debut in a Comic-Con exclusive novella in 2009. The following year Wickline embraced technology and wrote the next Fogg adventure live on Twitter. Now Fogg and his leg man Jimmy Doyle have become available for the Kindle, the Nook or for PDF download with the release of the full-length novel LUCIUS FOGG: DEADLY CREATURES.

The set up for the story is unique: “Jimmy Doyle is an honorable man who took a bullet for his country and returned home to become a private detective. His boss, Lucius Fogg, is the preeminent occultist who dabbles in solving the more macabre crimes of 1950s New York City. As Fogg’s legman, Doyle is thrust deep into the world of the supernatural, pitting him against everything from disembodied spirits to demonic possessions with a few vampires and werewolves thrown in. He often has to face these dangers alone, for even though the enigmatic Fogg is extremely powerful he can’t take one step outside of his home or he will die instantly.”

The novel is available for $2.99, a price Wickline was very adamant about: “The people who read my comic work are used to this price point, but now I get to offer them hours of entertainment instead of the normal twenty to thirty minutes they would get from a comic.”

As to why self-publish rather than going to an established literary house: “Fogg combines the things I love, classic detective tales with horror elements and hard-boiled heroes. It’s exactly the story I wanted to tell, but it doesn’t fit neatly into any of the existing categories that the established publishers like. By doing everything myself I have no one I’m beholden to other than my readers.”

Deadly Creatures is the first in a series of Lucius Fogg novels that Wickline plans to release two to three times a year. “I’m already a third of the way into the next novel and want to have it out before the end of the year. I have a plethora of ideas for Fogg and Doyle and the fact I write very fast allows me to explore this universe while still taking on the great comic projects that come my way.”

Lucius Fogg: Deadly Creatures is available now from:

Fogg for Kindle from Amazon.com

Fogg for Nook from Barnesandnoble.com

Or can be purchased as a PDF file directly through Paypal below.

Previous 10 | Next 10