AWAKENING TIMES Volume 15, Number 1

**********
**********

AWAKENING TIMES
Volume 15, Number 1
Winter 2015
AwakenCmx@aol.com
http://www.awakeningcomics.com

**********
**********

********** FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE ***********

After a successful Kickstarter campaign, The Comicverse #4 has been printed and is now available for sale online, in both floppy and digital form.

In the new issue, written as usual by Bianca Alu-Marr and drawn by Steve Peters, the station is destroyed by aliens. The Comicverse manage to escape in life pods, and are eventually picked up by a military peacekeeping vessel and placed in their cargo hold, left to ponder an uncertain future.

The 64-page, manga-size issue made its debut at a signing at Brave New Worlds Comics, Games, and Toys in Willow Grove, PA. Writer Adam McGovern, co-creator of Nightworld for Image Comics, came all the way from New Jersey to pick up a copy, and immediately wrote a nice review of the issue the following day.

The Awakening Comics web site has declared that February is Comicverse month, and there are a number of special offers up in its Featured Items section.

[More info about The Comicverse #4]

[Featured items for sale (including The Comicverse #4) in February 2015]

[Bianca’s writeup of Comiverse #4 signing and launch]

[Photos and sketches from the signing]

[Adam McGovern’s Review of The Comicverse #4]

**********
**********

Awakening Comics has created a new online digital store. 13 comics, including the new Comicverse #4, are available in .PDF form, as well as MP3s of Steve Peters’ two albums, Paradox and Chemistry. More digital comics will be available soon.

**********
**********

Bianca and Steve created a 6-page Comicverse comic for Fun-A-Day Philadelphia for the 3rd year in a row. Fun-A-Day is a national event during which artists create something every day during the month of January, then it is displayed at a gallery show in February.

[Read the entire Fun-A-Day Comicverse Comic]

[Photos from the gallery show on Facebook]

**********
**********

Awakening Comics will be exhibiting at the Camden Comicon in New Jersey.

Camden Comicon
http://camdencomiccon.tumblr.com/
March 7th, 2015
10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Rutgers Camden Athletics & Fitness Center

**********
**********

Posted in Newsletters | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Comicverse #3

Cover_Front CV 3

The Comicverse #3 is an exciting step for us in our development of the series. The main story, “Earth”, is our longest piece to date, and it features several firsts: the first date between main characters Rei and Aki, the first time Ying has ever met another dragon besides himself, shedding some light on the role of dragons in the Comicverse universe, the first view of the Comicverse space station’s ecological ring, which has some interesting and humorous features, our first-ever wordless story in a short piece called “Air”, which shows what happens when the air is sucked out of the Comicverse into space—a very dangerous situation!—and our first guest appearance by a known comics creator.

Since The Comicverse is a celebration of all things comic book-related, we’d like to get people in the comic book industry involved , people who celebrate comics the way we do. That’s why we asked Fred Hembeck to do a commission page for us featuring the Comicverse characters.

We also wanted to use this opportunity support Fred by letting folks know that he still does commissions regularly, and has some very reasonably priced drawings of comic book characters for sale on eBay. His website is http://www.hembeck.com/

[Read “Earth” on the Comicverse blog]

The Comicverse #3, published by Awakening Comics, May 2013.
Black and white, 32 pages.

[Awakening Home] [Awakening Catalog] [How To Order]

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Comicverse #4

Cover_Front

Written by Bianca Alu-Marr and drawn by Steve Peters, The Comicverse is a sci-fi romantic comedy about a comic book shop on a space station. It is run by a young man named Rei and a teenage dragon called Ying, whom Rei rescued from an asteroid and has no memory of his past. They both have a crush on Aki, a pilot who sometimes visits the shop. In our previous issue, Rei went on a date with Aki behind Ying’s back, but Ying eventually found out and was heartbroken.

Our latest installment, The Comicverse #4, is our most ambitious so far. It features a story called “Cargo Hold“, which is 64 pages long, by far the longest piece we have written for the series. In it, the space station is attacked and destroyed by marauding aliens! The residents of the station manage to get out in escape pods and find themselves adrift in space.

Eventually, they are picked up in a military peacekeeping ship and placed in their cargo hold, hence the title of the story. Ying and the others make the best of a scary situation, trying to bring comfort and lightheartedness to the other refugees.

The main idea for the plot was suggested by Steve; it was inspired by issue #51 of the legendary independent comic Cerebus, and its story which was called “Exodus“. By the time Dave Sim published that issue, he had been saying for quite a while that some of the characters in Cerebus were so easy to write for that he could throw them in a closet and the story would “write itself”. When he finally drew that issue, he put the characters together in the cargo hold of a trading ship.

The Comicverse #4 is a tour de force because Steve’s idea was not just to throw a few characters together in a tight space, but ALL of the characters from the space station who have appeared in the series so far, and see how they bounce off of and react to each other.

Bianca says: “This gave me so much creative freedom as a writer, and the story flowed and transformed on its own, within the framework of Steve’s plot ideas. My writing tends to have no boundaries, and the creativity is flowing everywhere. On my own, I don’t always end up finishing my stories because of this. However, with Steve’s clear vision and ability to help me with endings, we make a great team. “Cargo Hold” is one of the best examples of that dynamic.

“I love to see how all of the main and secondary characters are growing and becoming more layered and complex as time goes on. It’s their personalities that inform what they say and do, which allows me to help them sound natural and dynamic! I was also so excited to have them in a huge ship flying around in true sci-fi-style peril. It is our longest story to date, and I’m so happy to have this be our fourth issue!”

[Purchase The Comicverse #4] [Buy a digital copy]

[Read “Cargo Hold” on the Comicverse blog]

[Review of The Comicverse #4 by Adam McGovern (Nightworld)]

The Comicverse #4, published by Awakening Comics, February 2015.
Black and white, manga-size, 64 pages.

[Awakening Home] [Awakening Catalog] [How To Order]

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

AWAKENING TIMES Volume 14, Number 2

**********
**********

AWAKENING TIMES
Volume 14, Number 2
Fall 2014
AwakenCmx@aol.com
http://www.awakeningcomics.com

**********
**********

CONTENTS: COMICVERSE UNDER FIRE!-A new Kickstarter fundraiser for The Comicverse #4, Comicverse receives and seeks more reader art, Ying does interviews at Philly Zine Fest, Awakening Comics exhibits at Locust Moon Comics Festival, The Comicverse now available at Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash

**********
**********

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: COMICVERSE UNDER FIRE!

Everyone’s favorite comic shop in space is destroyed by aliens! Will Ying the dragon and his friends escape this dire predicament?

Written by Bianca Alu-Marr and drawn by Steve Peters, The Comicverse is a sci-fi romantic comedy about a comic book shop on a space station. It is run by a young man named Rei and a teenage dragon called Ying, whom Rei rescued from an asteroid and has no memory of his past. They both have a crush on Aki, a pilot who sometimes visits the shop. In our previous issue, Rei went on a date with Aki behind Ying’s back, but Ying eventually found out and was heartbroken.

Our latest installment, The Comicverse #4, is our most ambitious so far. It features a story called “Cargo Hold“, which is 64 pages long, by far the longest piece we have written for the series. In it, the space station is attacked and destroyed by marauding aliens! The residents of the station manage to get out in escape pods and find themselves adrift in space.

Eventually, they are picked up in a military peacekeeping ship and placed in their cargo hold, hence the title of the story. Ying and the others make the best of a scary situation, trying to bring comfort and lightheartedness to the other refugees.

The main idea for the plot was suggested by Steve; it was inspired by issue #51 of the legendary independent comic Cerebus, and its story which was called “Exodus“. By the time Dave Sim published that issue, he had been saying for quite a while that some of the characters in Cerebus were so easy to write for that he could throw them in a closet and the story would “write itself”. When he finally drew that issue, he put the characters together in the cargo hold of a trading ship.

The Comicverse #4 is a tour de force because Steve’s idea was not just to throw a few characters together in a tight space, but ALL of the characters from the space station who have appeared in the series so far, and see how they bounce off of and react to each other.

Bianca says: “This gave me so much creative freedom as a writer, and the story flowed and transformed on its own, within the framework of Steve’s plot ideas. My writing tends to have no boundaries, and the creativity is flowing everywhere. On my own, I don’t always end up finishing my stories because of this. However, with Steve’s clear vision and ability to help me with endings, we make a great team. “Cargo Hold” is one of the best examples of that dynamic.

“I love to see how all of the main and secondary characters are growing and becoming more layered and complex as time goes on. It’s their personalities that inform what they say and do, which allows me to help them sound natural and dynamic! I was also so excited to have them in a huge ship flying around in true sci-fi-style peril. It is our longest story to date, and I’m so happy to have this be our fourth issue!”


COMICVERSE: UNDER FIRE Kickstarter

**********
**********

We’ve received some Comicverse reader art that we posted on the Comicverse Facebook page. We’d love to get some more; when we have enough we’ll put them in a future issue of the comic. Just send them to AwakenCmx@aol.com.

**********
**********

Bianca exhibited at the Philly Zine Fest on November 8, 2014, and Ying the dragon was also in attendance interviewing some of the exhibitors. This was our first time doing interviews with Ying and we really loved how they came out, so we’ll probably do more in the future. Read Bianca’s report on the show and see Ying’s interviews on the Comicverse blog.

**********
**********

Awakening Comics was an exhibitor at the Locust Moon Comics Fest in Philadelphia on October 25, 2014. Steve made one of his walkabout videos to give a sense of what it’s like to be at the show, this time following Ying around as he says hello to friends and makes humorous comments. Read Bianca’s report on the show and see Ying’s walkabout on the Comicverse blog.

**********
**********

Steve and Bianca made a trip to Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash in Red Bank, New Jersey. The manager of the store and star of AMC’s Comic Book Men, Walt Flanagan, was there, and he liked the cut of The Comicverse’s gib and offered to sell copies of the comic there at the store. You can see photos of our visit at the Comicverse Facebook page.

**********
**********

Steve: “I’ve been receiving steady support from my Patreon patrons. Thanks to them, I’ve been working on some new music. I’ve been planning an epic piece for nearly a year, but have barely done a thing. I promised my Patreon supporters I’d give them a section of music every month as I write them. Turns out it’s a good motivational tool; I might never finish the piece otherwise! As part of one of the rewards tiers, I’ve also been sharing songs from my archives that have never been released. Again, I’m very glad I’ve been motivated to do so by my patrons—all this music is stored in an outdated format, and desperately needed to be converted to mp3 format before it’s lost forever. It’s fascinating and inspiring to rediscover this music that I haven’t listened to in years. I’m amazed to hear how driven and enthusiastic I was back in my 20’s, and it’s helped returned some of that drive and energy to me.

“Also, on November 13th, I did Google hangout for Patreon patron Mucha Smooches; we were joined by Max Ink. Mucha watched and asked questions as I worked on this page drawn by Philly Comix Jam, cleaning it up digitally and adding the gray tones. That was great fun, and I’d love to do more Hangouts with patrons.”

Become a patron here. Donations are as low as $1 a month.

**********
**********

Steve Peters
http://www.awakeningcomics.com

**********
**********

Posted in Newsletters | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Comicverse #2

Cover_Front

In The Comicverse #2, the comic shop on the final frontier is visited by a creature who has a bad reaction to an alien energy drink. The confused creature soon goes crazy, shape-changing into the characters it sees in the comics around the store, wreaking havoc and tearing the store apart! The situation soon goes even more out of control as guests begin to wander in at the worst possible time!

In a new backup feature, the reader gets a web-surfing tour through a space encyclopedia (called the Akashipedia) that reveals some of the mysteries behind the Comicverse space station and the aliens that play an important part in the series. Artist Steve Peters says: “I wanted to have a handbook to the Comicverse that would partly like the Dune Encyclopedia, and part like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. I think Bianca reached a new level writing the Akashipedia entries—there’s some very funny stuff in there!”

Samples From “Don’t Drink and Read” on Facebook

“Free Comic Book Day” on the Comicverse blog

“Free Comic Book Day, Part 2″ on the Comicverse blog

“Ying’s Yuletide Surprise” on Facebook

[Awakening Home] [Awakening Catalog] [How To Order]

Posted in Comics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

AWAKENING TIMES Volume 14, Number 1

**********
**********

AWAKENING TIMES
Volume 14, Number 1
Summer 2014
AwakenCmx@aol.com
http://www.awakeningcomics.com

**********
**********

CONTENTS: A Word From The Publisher; Comicverse: Behind The Counter #1 Now Available; Steve Peters’ Patreon: Become a Patron For Awakening Comics; New Journal Strip on Tumblr

**********

Hi folks! It occurs to me that my last publication, Comicverse: Behind The Counter #1 is now about 1 year old, yet I’ve never announced its availability to the people on this email list (though I did mention the Kickstarter for it, which was successful, in case you weren’t following that). As I’ve said a few times before, I’ve become pretty bad at sending out this newsletter; the best way to keep up with my activities these days is on my Facebook page and on the Comicverse Facebook page. I know that some people don’t do Facebook—is there anyone out there who still relies on this newsletter for Awakening news? Replies are appreciated!

At any rate, I have some old news for you about that, along with a new special sale of that item for this month only. Also, a couple of NEW news items! See? I’m not completely hopeless!

—Steve

**********
**********

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (about a year late, ha!): COMICVERSE: BEHIND THE COUNTER #1

Kickstarter.jpg

Comicverse: Behind The Counter is a spinoff of The Comicverse, which is a sci-fi rom-com weekly webcomic about a comic book shop on a space station written by Bianca Alu-Marr and drawn by Steve Peters. Comicverse: Behind The Counter is a behind the scenes look at the Comicverse world illustrated by guest artists who all bring their own unique visual interpretations of the characters and settings.

Comicverse co-creator Steve Peters says: “I am enjoying my work on The Comicverse immensely, but I am also a writer. Since I am 100% committed to promoting The Comicverse, yet need to scratch that writery itch, I had the idea of working on a Comicverse spinoff series that I would write and draw, which I started working on in 2012. In the interest of fairness, I suggested to Bianca that she write some stories for other artists to illustrate, which could become a Comicverse spinoff of its own.”

Bianca says: “Neil Gaiman says about writing, ‘I learned to write by writing. I tended to do anything as long as it felt like an adventure, and to stop when it felt like work, which meant that life did not feel like work.’ I felt the same way while writing the stories in this compilation, and being able to collaborate with such talented and diverse artists, whose unique styles enhanced my words. It was pure joy and fun, with not a hint of work. And it helped that I loved to explore the stories on the cutting floor, or behind the scenes in the Comicverse world that may not have had a chance to shine. I hope you feel the same way, and check out Comicverse: Behind the Counter.”

The first artist is Steve’s cousin, Daniel Spontón, an Argentinian cartoonist. He draws pictures for a magazine called Genios in a “Where’s Waldo”-type style, and Steve had him do an image in that vein for a wraparound cover for his publication, Yes Fanzine #2. Daniel’s story for Behind The Counter is drawn in a different style, with lovely pen and ink work. It is a story within a story, in a comic book that Ying the dragon is reading to learn more about his own kind, called “The Dragon’s Pearl“.

The next artist is Zinc Comics creator Brian Payne. He illustrated a story called “Oh, No They Di-in’t” for us that he has described as Comicverse’s equivalent to the Cantina scene in Star Wars!

The third artist appearing in Comicverse: Behind The Counter is Dre Grigoropol, also known as Dretime, who Steve met at Philly Comix Jam in 2009, and their work has appeared together in several publications since then. She asked Bianca to write her a story about romance, so Bianca wrote a story called “Dark Is The New Sexy“, which features Devon the emo kid, who first appeared in The Comicverse #3.

The final contributor to Comicverse: Behind The Counter is Hans Rickheit, who did a lovely illustration of Ying reading comics.

Comicverse: Behind The Counter #1, published by Awakening Comics, September 2013.
Black and white, manga-size, 40 pages.

Special offer (September 2014 only): Buy Behind The Counter #1 and get a small piece of Comicverse art from a future issue for $7

Buy Behind The Counter #1 from the Awakening eBay page

Browse the Awakening Comics back catalog of available issues

**********
**********

I have launched a Patreon page. Patreon lets fans support their favorite creators by becoming patrons. Unlike other fundraising services,such as Kickstarter, which raise for a single big event, Patreon is for creators who create a stream of smaller works. Instead of being project-based, it’s an ongoing donation.

Things have been very tight and my day job and I’m struggling to make ends meet, so Patreon has been a real boon for getting a little extra income to fund my creative efforts.

Patrons can pledge as low as $1 a month, and can stop their payments at any time.

Patrons receive rewards that vary depending on how much is donated per month. It’s been a huge help with reviving my musical projects, something I’ve wanted to do but haven’t found the time/motivation—some of my patrons are pledged to receive songs from the Awakening archives that I’ve never released before. This has impelled me to format old songs in mp3 format, which is important to me because they were recorded in an obsolete format (that I no longer can use), and have since been transferred to another format that is also obsolete. If I hadn’t started transferring them (thanks to Patreon) to mp3, a lot of this stuff could be lost forever! And it’s been a joy and inspiration to listen to this old material again, which I haven’t done in many years.

I’ve had an epic piece of music in mind for a while that will serve as a soundtrack for a future comic, and since I’ve promised some patrons monthly samples of the work-in-progress, it’s finally gotten me to work on the project, which as I said earlier I might not get around to otherwise.

Another reward a Google hangout with patrons, which I’m really looking forward to doing. I already have one patron who is subscribed for that, but she has yet to claim her reward!

Here’s the reward levels:

Pledge $1.00 or more per month:
Access to my Patreon activity stream

Pledge $3.00 or more per month:
Access to my Patreon activity stream
Music content from my archives (I recorded a LOT of stuff before putting out my two CDs).

Pledge $5.00 or more per month:
The above rewards, plus: Samples of new music as I gradually put together a new epic piece of music.

Pledge $10.00 or more per month:
The above rewards, plus: Join a monthly Google hangout where you can ask questions and watch me working on the newest Comicverse page.

Pledge $40.00 or more per month:
The above rewards, plus: A small piece of Comicverse art mailed to you every month.

Pledge $100.00 or more per month:
The above rewards, plus: A full page of Comicverse art mailed to you every month.

Here’s the link to my Patreon page.

**********
**********

I’ve started a new semi-autobiographical diary comic called JOURNAL OF THE ROOK which features the ramblings of Esteban Moisset, a character that sometimes appears in The Comicverse and is based on me (my middle name is Moisset). I won’t be updating every day, but rather as time permits and when inspiration strikes.

You can see it here.

**********
**********

Posted in Newsletters | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Awakening Masterpieces #2

 

Cover

Awakening Masterpieces #2 features sketch cards drawn between 2006 and 2010 for Awakening Comics readers, and sketchbook art from 1996 to 2000, with preliminary work on covers and characters from Everwinds, The Everwinds Awakening War, Awakening Comics 1999 #1, and Chemistry.

Sketch card topics include Micronauts, Groo Cerebus, Sparky, Runner the fox, and numerous Marvel and DC superheroes.

Awakening Masterpieces #2. Summer 2010.
By Steve Peters.
32 pages, published by Awakening Comics.

 

[Awakening Home] [Awakening Catalog] [How To Order]

Posted in Comics, Items For Sale | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment