Welcome to Biting-Edge, a blog shared by authors and vampire experts, Mario Acevedo and Jeanne Stein. We’ll cover urban fantasy, vampires, pop culture, and all things Joss Whedon. Unlike other fantasy blogs, we don’t insist on body cavity searches (unless you ask politely). Snarkiness is most welcome...though we won't promise not to bite back!

Sunday, April 25, 2010
  Funky Writer Radio and awesome artwork from Killing the Cobra

Mario here:

As a preview to Romantic Times, I was on a radio interview on The Funky Writer Radio Show with Brad Park, Eden Bradley, Joseph Finder, and Kayla Perrin.   Witty guys these writers.

I'm leaving Wednesday for RT 2010, joining the posse from the League of Reluctant Adults.  Much high jinx expected.

May 12, the release date for issue #1 of my comic book, Killing the Cobra: Chinatown Trollop.  Thought I'd give you an inside look at the creative process since producing a comic is a lot different than for a novel.  For one, the process is a lot more collaborative.  I write the scripts and one artist pencils, inks, and colors the panels.  Another artist, in this case Pintu, from Spain, does the covers.  Someone else does the lettering.  And we have an editor tweaking the work as it progresses from script to finished copy.

I submit the script and the artists create panels and cover concepts.

Here are the first two concepts for the cover for issue #1.

We liked the second concept better.  Very dramatic even though it's still a sketch.

The final version:

Alberto Dose, the artist who does the panels also contributed a cover.

Now for the panels.  Alberto Dose submits  pencil sketches based on his interpretation of my script. 

Here's copy for Page 1 from the script for Issue #1.

Panel One

Present day.  Dusk.  Horizontal view of a harbor with Chinese junks crowded together, basically a squalid floating ghetto.  The lights of Hong Kong blaze in the background.


Panel Two

Another horizontal view, emphasizing the masts, rigging, and electrical wires crisscrossed above the junks.  A blurry image of a man leaping--Spiderman style--in the gap between two of the masts.  Night is getting darker.

Panel Three

High-angle shot of an elderly Chinese woman squatting on the deck of a junk.  She’s surrounded by wash hanging on lines as she washes clothes in a bucket (remember, these people are poor).  She’s looking up, surprised.

Panel Four

Close up of the woman as she continues to look up at the masts.

The pencil sketch:

You can appreciate Albertos' skill at persepective and rendering faces.

Next he inks the page.

And finally the color.  In the old days, these three steps would be done by different artists but are now completed by one artist using graphics programs like Illustrator and PhotoShop.

Next is the lettering, also done now by computer instead of hand lettering, for the final copy. Manipulating the pages in digital format greatly simplifies  the editing and correction process.

And here is Felix.  When I first saw his picture as a vampire I said he needed a haircut and to bag the trench coat, which Alberto did.

I was asked for my concepts for issue #2.   I wanted a crow and a picture of the Chinese vampire shaman.

Here's what I got.  Felix looks much too Christ-like.  Not him at all.

It was tweaked to this.  Closer.  In the script, Felix was shot off a ship but I thought the design could be improved.

And the final.  Very nice.  My favorite cover so far.  Felix looks like a real bad ass.

Alberto had his ideas of what the shaman looked like and here is what he drew for the panels.  Creepy dude.

And if you're curious what Alberto Dose looks like.  He's worked in  Argentina, Italy, Spain, and France and his work includes story boards for the TV show Rugrats.  Alberto currently lives in Burbank, CA.

Talk to you after RT!

Looks fantastic! I've had my copy on order and I'm looking forward to picking it up when it comes out. I love seeing part of the conceptual process. Fascinating!
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