Witchblade

In Stores This Week

Some pre-holiday cheers hits this week in the form of Witchblade #171. The issue continues the “Borne Again” storyline that began in the previous issue, which marked my return to the title after a few years away. A great deal had changed in the ensuing time, with Sara having cast away the Witchblade and become a small-town Sheriff. Sara was shot by an unknown assailant in the issue-ending cliffhanger.

The art is once again by the regular team Laura Braga (line work), Betsy Gonia (color) and Troy Peteri (letters). The issue features two covers, one by John Tyler Christopher and one by Stjepan Sejic.

A full preview can be seen here:
http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=preview&id=19386


In Stores This Week

I’ve been looking forward to this week for quite a while, as the first issue of my return to Witchblade is released. Top Cow’s Witchblade #170 debuts this week in stores and online, the beginning of what I expect to be a long run by me, artist Laura Braga and colorist Betsy Gonia.

I stepped away from Witchblade with issue #150, after writing more than 70 consecutive issues of the title. Top Cow asked me to come back to the series with issue #170, and I was fortunate to see Laura Braga’s work thanks to a Twitter conversation with her. She and Betsy are a perfect fit for the story we’re telling, and I’m thrilled to be working with both of them.

The story opens with Witchblade wielder Sara Pezzini in a much different place, acting as Sheriff of Saratoga County in upstate New York. And as the preview pages seemingly indicate, Sara no long has the Witchblade. This initial story arc, “Borne Again,” will run through issue #174, and delve into Sara’s past, present and … well, it’s possible she might not have any future.

Witchblade #170 is wrapped in a stunning Marc Silvestri cover, and there’s a Third Eye Comics store-exclusive cover by Francesco Francavilla. A preview of the issue can be seen here:

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=preview&id=18537

Update: “Sound on Sight” did a piece / interview on my return to Witchblade: http://www.soundonsight.org/the-witchblade-halloween-catch-up/

Cheers,

Ron


In Stores This Week

A collection containing some of my earliest work hits stores this week in the Infinity Gauntlet Aftermath TPB. In addition to a number of my early Silver Surfer issues, it also contains some Warlock and the Infinity Watch issues, and a few Doctor Strange tales.

The collection includes Silver Surfer #60-#66, and some other odds and ends that I penned, most of which are drawn by Ron Lim, the first artistic partner I ever had. It’s interesting for me to look back at this material. Yes, some of it’s pretty awkward, with all the hallmarks of a writer trying to learn his craft. But there’s also exuberance, which hopefully makes up for some of the shortcomings.

I also had two releases out last week, one a short story and the other a trade paperback collection. The short story is in Skullkickers #24 from Image Comics, a “Before Skullkickers”-themed anthology showing the series characters in earlier days. Series creator Jim Zub asked me to contribute a story starring Kusia, and I was more than happy to drag in my pal Stjepan Sejic for art duties.

Truth be told, the entire seven-page story took four days to create. One for me to write it, two for Stjepan to digitally paint it, and a few hours on day four to letter it. Yes, Stjepan drew and colored the entire story in two days. Because he’s a beast. I’m still stunned.

The other release is the Progeny trade paperback from Top Cow, collecting the recent storyline that ran through Artifacts, Witchblade and Darkness. My contribution to the collection is Artifacts #25-#26, which bookend the storyline of the Top Cow Universe’s Artifacts bearers confronting Jackie Estacado, master of the Darkness. The entire story was very much a collaborative effort, with David Hine setting the direction and Tim Seeley and I following along.


Comics for Tots

This marks the third year for what’s become known as Comics for Tots. I offer up signed comics in exchange for donations to Toys for Tots. All the money collected (after shipping costs) is spent on toys donated to the Toys for Tots drive. Last year’s drive resulted in donations of more than $500.

Yes, there are many worthy causes that need donation, especially at this time of year. I chose Toys for Tots because my own childhood memories of Christmas are so fondly held, that I hope in some small way, this effort helps make magical memories for those who might not otherwise have them.

We have a couple of unique sketched/signed items this year that are still being prepared, but I can tell you they include artwork by Darryl Banks and Dan Jurgens. I’ll post an update as soon as they’re ready, and then set up an auction (likely on Twitter) to maximize the donation. Check back for updates soon.

Postage is included in the price of each book (or set of books). All books are signed by me, and can be personalized if you desire. Here’s what’s available this year:

*Shinku Vol. 1 TPB, signed by me and artist Lee Moder, who has also sketched a head shot of Shinku inside each volume. The accompanying photo shows the general type of Sketch Lee has done. There are only six of these available, and they’re first come, first served, $50. Mature readers.

*Green Lantern #49, also signed by penciler Darryl Banks. There are only six of these available, and they’re first come, first served, $25.

*Shinku #1-#5, the single issues of my creator-owned book with Lee Moder (mature audiences), all five issues for $30. Mature readers.

*Mystic Volume 2 TPB, art by Brandon Peterson and George Perez, cover by Phil Noto. This is the original CrossGen printing, collecting issues #8-#14, plus CrossGen Chronicles #5. There are five of these available, and they’re first come, first served, $30.

*Scion #6, #7, #8, #9 set, art by Jim Cheung and Rick Leonardi, all four issues for $25.

*The Path Prequel and #1, art by Bart Sears, both issues for $20.

*Friday the 13th: Bad Land #1, #2, art by Mike Huddleston; not exactly a holiday tale, but at least it’s set during a blizzard, both issues for $20. Mature readers.

*Magdalena #1, art by Nelson Blake 2nd, with one of my favorite covers ever by Ryan Sook, $15.

*Broken Trinity #2, art by Phil Hester and Stjepan Sejic, $10.

We also have a unique item donated by my pal, sculptor and artist Paul Harding. Paul has signed and donated a Fables Snow White bust, designed by series artist Mark Buckingham and sculpted by Paul. The first donation of $60 takes it.
SOLD!!!

Payment details and shipping notes

The easiest method of donation is PayPal, so please PayPal your order to: kmarz@nycap.rr.com

On the PayPal form, please include the address to which you want the issues sent. If you’d like the books personalized, please include that info as well. I try to have issues in the mail within 24 hours of the order being received. All comics will be sent via USPS.

For anyone who doesn’t have a PayPal account, please use the Contact button on this website and drop me an e-mail; we’ll figure out something. Also, I WILL mail out to international addresses, but there will be an additional postage charge. If you let me know your location, a postage quote will be sent.

We’ll accept donations right up through Christmas. However, many Toys for Tots drop-off locations are collected by the middle of December (as the Marines need time to sort and deliver donations). So ordering as soon as possible is appreciated.

Thank you all. Your generosity makes this possible. Hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season.

Happy Holidays,

Ron


Pre-order Orders

I thought I should start a monthly feature on what’s currently being solicited, to give you a chance to place pre-orders with your retailers. Pre-orders are the lifeblood of all titles, really, but especially independent titles like those from Image. Literally every sale is important to keep the titles afloat. There are no deep corporate pockets to keep Image titles going; the live and die only on their sales.

In June, I have four different books coming out from Image:

*Shinku #8, my creator-owned, contemporary vampire-samurai thriller, with Lee Moder, Matthew Waite and Mike Atiyeh on art.

*Artifacts #19, introducing the new bearer of the Heart Stone, with Stjepan Sejic art.

*Artifacts Vol. 4 TPB, collecting issues #14-#18.

*Witchblade Compendium Vol. 3, which collects the bulk of my Witchblade run, issues #101-#150, in both hardcover and softcover versions.

The complete solicitations for Image’s June books can be seen here:

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=37614

Also debuting in June is Prophecy #1, from Dynamite, which kicks off a seven-issue crossover by me and regular Red Sonja artist Walter Geovani. The story will bring together a host of Dynamite characters, including Sonja, Vampirella, Dracula, Alan Quartermain, Pantha and more. You can read more about Prophecy in an interview I did with CBR:

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=37567

I’ll also have a story in a special “Monster Massacre” issue of Heavy Metal magazine that debuts in July. It’s the debut of a new creator-owned property that Tom Raney and I are doing together. The specifics are still under wraps, but you can find a little more information on the project here:

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=37581

Remember, pre-order!

Cheers,

Ron


In Stores This Week

Magdalena #11 hits stores this week, continuing the “One True Cross” storyline by the usual gang: me writing, art by Nelson Blake 2nd, Dave Marquez and Sal Regla, with color by Dave McCaig and letters by Troy Petri. The story goes some unexpected places, both literally and figuratively, as Patience, Kristof and guest star Sara Pezzini (of Witchblade fame) visit new locations, and come face to face with what I hope is a surprise revelation.

I’ve made no secret of the fact that Magdalena is a series I’d been wanting to write for years. As with almost any non-Big Two book, we have to fight for every sale in order to stay afloat. The Magdalena Vol. 1 TPB collection has sold well, and for that we’re incredibly thankful. But sales of the individual issues play a large part in keeping the book alive, and I desperately want to keep Magdalena alive. Hope you’ll give it a try.

Cheers,

Ron


In Stores This Week

It’s an Artifacts kind of week this week, as both Artifacts #14 and the Artifacts Volume 3 TPB hit stores. The collected edition contains issues #9-#13, with art by Jeremy Haun and Dale Keown respectively, plus a cover gallery and assorted extras.

Artifacts #14 is the continuation of the saga, picking up where #13 left off by exploring the new world that was created at the end of the initial 13-issue storyline. I’m joined on the now-ongoing Artifacts series by Stjepan Sejic, my artistic partner on Witchblade for the last few years. Stjepan and I plan on settling in for a nice, long run on Artifacts, which features Tom Judge and Tilly Grimes as main characters, with everyone from Jackie Estacado to Sara Pezzini to Aphrodite orbiting around them.

By the way, Witchblade: Redemption Volume 4 TPB, by me and Stjepan, was released last week. It contains the final issues of our run, #146-#150.

There’s an 11-page preview of Artifacts #14 here:

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=preview&id=11397

Cheers,

Ron


in stores this week

Big week for new books, as Witchblade #150, Magdalena #10 (from Top Cow), and The Storyteller hardcover from Archaia all hit shops.

Witchblade #150 marks my last issue on the title, bringing to a close my run of 71 consecutive issues, plus assorted mini-series and Annuals. It’s kind of bittersweet, because I’ve come to really love writing Sara Pezzini and her world. But Stjepan Sejic and I will be moving over to the Artifacts monthly series, starting with issue #14. Our last issue of Witchblade brings to a close the current chapter in Sara’s life, and sets the stage for what comes next.

Magdalena #10 is the second part of “The One True Cross” storyline, with art by Nelson Blake 2nd, David Marquez, Sal Regla and Dave McCaig. Beautiful work from all those gentlemen, as the story globe-hops from the mountains of Mexico to Seattle. I’m enjoying the hell out of writing Magdalena … pun intended.

Preview here: http://comics.ign.com/articles/121/1214582p1.html

And The Storyteller hardcover is an anthology based on the Henson television show, and contains an eight-page story by me and Craig Rousseau, a retelling of the Japanese fable “Momotaro the Peach Boy.” The fable part of the story was drawn on Canson paper by Craig, a technique I’ve wanted to include in a story for years, ever since seeing Craig’s Canson sketchbooks. I was actually able to pick up an advance copy of The Storyteller at NYCC, and it’s an absolutely beautiful tome, with Archaia’s trademark exquisite production. Other creators represented in the book are Jeff Parker, Marjorie Liu, Roger Langridge, Paul Tobin, Colleen Coover, Tom Fowler, Chris Eliopoulos, Jennifer L. Meyer and more. Nate Cosby, who also adapted an unused script from the show, pulled the whole thing together as editor.

Preview here: http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=preview&id=10749

Cheers,

Ron


In stores this week

I’ve got two new issues hitting shelves this Wednesday, both from Top Cow. Artifacts #11, with art by Jeremy Haun and Sunny Gho, brings the storyline closer to its climax and features a character death by issue’s end. And it’s not a “comic book” death in which the character miraculously returns to life a few months later. Dead means dead … as in “not coming back.” There’s also another two-page origin, this one featuring art by the legendary Michael Golden.

Also in stores Wednesday in Witchblade #149, the final part of the “Tiamat” storyline, and my penultimate issue of the book with Stjepan Sejic. The issue wraps the current four-part arc, and sets the stage for the double-size #150 next month. After we wrap up our run on Witchblade, Stjepan and I will move over to Artifacts with issue #14, as the event series becomes a monthly title.

Cheers,

Ron


In stores this week

No single issues, but Witchblade: Redemption Vol. 3 hits stores (and Amazon) this week. The collection includes issues #142 through #145, plus Annual #2. Issues #142 and #143 are a solo adventure starring Sara Pezzini’s partner, Det. Patrick Gleason, drawn by my buddy Matthew Dow Smith. The tale is actually set in the upstate New York area where Matt and I both live.

Regular series artist Stjepan Sejic returns for issue #144, which is a retelling of Sara’s first encounter with the Witchblade, though in the form of a diary by her late partner. Issue #145 is another standalone tale about a creature in the NYC sewers, told via a few “Rashomon” points of view. The Annual’s lead story is a World War II adventure, set during the siege of Stalingrad, and featuring that era’s Witchblade bearer, with some lovely art by Tony Shasteen. Matt Smith also contributed an illustrated prose story.

Lastly, a little catch-up, as apparently Archaia’s hardcover anthology Immortals: Gods and Heroes hit stores last week. All the stories are all based on the upcoming film, expanding upon the mythos. My story, starring Ares, was drawn by another good friend, Rafael Kayanan, whom I’ve known for years, but this was our first time working together. As it happens, Raf also worked as a designer on the “Immortals” film for director Tarsem Singh. The rest of the anthology features a pretty grand array of talent, assembled by editor Nate Cosby, including Phil Hester, Jock, Ben Templesmith, David Gallaher, Ben McCool, Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmiotti, Dennis Calero and F.J. DeSanto.

Cheers,

Ron


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