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Paul Greer
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Posted: 26 July 2006 at 9:14pm | IP Logged | 1  

I'm not trying to jump on the bandwagon, but Chuck isn't saying anything that I don't agree with about comics today. I'm glad he is hanging out on this forum. I don't frequent other comic forums, but I did check out Chuck's the entire week JB was on vacation.
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Brandon Pennison
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 8:01am | IP Logged | 2  

Chuck is and always will be one of my favorite writers and I am very glad he posts on and reads this forum.

When Asonishing X-Men started a few years ago, a friend of mine, who doesn't collect comics but always went to the shop with me and another friend who did collect, decided he would pick this series up since it was just starting.  He has been with the book and read it and only has to keep up with one book (not 15-20 like most of us read) and he cannot remember what happened in the last issue when a new one decides to come out.  Of course, I can't either.  When someone is reading a comic book and cannot remember what happened in the last issue and for that matter cannot remember when the last issue came out even, that is a problem.  Of course the book is great once it is in the can, but as a real comic fan who reads monthly books, it is unacceptable.  I would rather see writers and artists who can maintain a monthly schedule get work first and special projects that are not monthly or numbered books going to these casual pros.

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Ted Downum
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 8:33am | IP Logged | 3  

Thanks, Chuck, for that last post.  It's always heartening to be reminded that some people in comics still value professionalism and responsibility.  Also, I'm one more JBF member who's happy to have you here.

 

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Howard Mackie
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 9:07am | IP Logged | 4  

<<Maybe if they go back to the Marvel method the writers
could script the books a little faster. It is a crying
shame that an artist (who is known for working slow) is
just waiting for a script to draw, months after the book
was solicited for sale. My head is spinning trying to
understand. I know the guy was sick, but he seems to be
getting his other titles out on time. Maybe the editors
need to stop piling so much work onto a limited amount of
writers. I'm sure there are a few writers on this board
alone that could do the job just as well, and on time.>>

Okay, so I've popped into the middle of this
thread(haven't read many of the previous posts) and I do
not know WHO we are speaking about. But...this posting
jumped out at me. The way I was taught(both as a writer
and an editor) was that it was inexcusable for a artist
to EVER be waiting for a plot. Period. Yes, we fudged the
time a quite a bit, would get the plots to the artist a
day or two BEFORE he finished... but he could never have
an excuse to not be drawing. Honestly, with everything
being done full script(as opposed to the Marvel method)
and with e-mail... I am confused as to how this could
EVER HAPPEN. It's why we used to get fill-in stories
done. I used to tell writers that if they didn't want a
fill-in story written by another writer... write one for
me and we would keep it in the draw.

Again, just me... if I knew so much, etc...


Edited by Howard Mackie on 27 July 2006 at 9:08am
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Chuck Dixon
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 9:48am | IP Logged | 5  

You speak words of iron, Howard.

The very thought of an artists sitting waiting for script from me turns my guts to water. I have to confess it's happened to me a few times through scheduling screw-ups. (show of hands, how many here ever worked for Don Daley?) But I moved heaven and earth to get the artist started again THAT DAY. Before the days of email I would phone the artist and describe a three page opening. I'd hang up the phone and get to work on the remainder of the story immediately so there'd be no stall time.

I was once assigned a fill-in story on a popular book because the writer could not make the deadline. I had two days to jump in and write a story featuring a character I was familiar with but had never written myself. Thank God for a news event that prompted an idea for the plot and I had the full script in on time.

I asked the editor what had happened to the regular writer. Illness? Family emergency? Concussion?

I was told that the fill-in was for the NEW writer who had not started his run yet. Why would a writer need a fill-in when he hadn't started his run yet?

"Well, he's not sure what he wants to write about yet."

I'm normally able to supress outrage but couldn't help blurting, "Then why did you give him the book?"

I got the telephonic equivalent of a shrug.

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Robert Last
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:05am | IP Logged | 6  


I think there's alot to be said for sending notoriously slow creators out to do real jobs, just to remind them how lucky they are that they don't HAVE to work a 12 hour shift slopping burgers in 40 degree heat, or moving a pile of sand the size of a house eight feet in pouring rain (been there, done that one)

It was Mark Bagley who I remember commenting that he'd had real jobs like the ones I described, and the memory of those times kept him professional (I'm paraphrasing, but that was the jist of it)

Sometimes I think these guys have come straight out of college or university and never done a real days work in their lives...

Oh God, I just became my father :)
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Brandon Pennison
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:10am | IP Logged | 7  

Even though we are 'preaching to the choir' about professionalism and work ethics, it is still good therapy.  Whether we apply this kind of logic to comics or whatever work you do, professionalism and pride in one's work should be what motivates your professional career.

I work in the software industry and missing deadlines is not a good option for a programmer.  I also have journalism experience so I certainly can appreciate the stories you guys are sharing.

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Jason Fulton
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:12am | IP Logged | 8  

"Well, he's not sure what he wants to write about yet."

Why would someone accept a job under these circumstances? If I hired a guy to paint my house, I sure wouldn't wait around for a week while the guys sits around with his dick in his hand and figures out how he's going to get it done.

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John Byrne
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:16am | IP Logged | 9  

Since I just hired someone to paint my house, you
have no idea how much I wish you had chosen
another metaphor!!
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John Byrne
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:18am | IP Logged | 10  

...show of hands, how many here ever worked for Don Daley?...

***

I worked with Don. And believe it or not, he was a paragon of timeliness compared to some I worked with later! Remember, the first issue of XHY, which had been sitting in the drawer finished for something like five months shipped late because of editorial incompetence! A year later, this was repeated with the 12th issue!

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Ted Pugliese
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:22am | IP Logged | 11  

Does the painter know "who" you are or care?  I am curious because I used to be a painter (like my father was) and could only imagine going to the job and finding you there.  BTW, I used to work for my dad's old partner on all the big jobs in Miami.  Millionaire homes on Star Island and such.  If you lived there, JB, you may have ended up using us.  I remember one job, Mrs. Bregenzer (old Penn steel money), with guest quarters and a Rolls on Star Island with Dolphins jumping in the back.  As a kid (18-19), I was so impressed.  But I digress...
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Adam T Hughes
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:32am | IP Logged | 12  

I was forwarded this by a friend, so I felt the need to join up and say something, partly to quash rumors.

First up, "Then you read that Adam Hughes is going to do a monthly".  Ouch.  Not sure if that puppy I ran over last week was Chuck's, but now I'm thinking it was...

Secondly, I am not doing a 'monthly'.  My commitment to ALL-STAR WONDER WOMAN is for 6 issues.  My schedule is to hand in 10 pages, pencilled and inked, a month.  The issues will be released monthly, on-time, because we're starting far enough in advance.  You will get your ALL-STAR WONDER WOMAN every four weeks.

I think that if the announcement had been worded that 'Adam Hughes is doing 132 pages of WONDER WOMAN', there'd be less confusion and consternation.

Next, may I be allowed to take umbrage at the suggestion that anyone who does not/can not create a monthly comic is either casual or (more offensively) unprofessional and irresponsible.  I realize that this is the wrong place to suggest this, but the notion that you are not a real comic artist if you can't do a monthly book is archaic.  Prolific masters like John Byrne and Jack Kirby are the exceptions, not the rule.  Would you call Neal Adams unprofessional or irresponsible, just because HE never did a monthly book?  All 12 issues of WATCHMAN didn't ship on time; is Dave Gibbons therefore merely a casual dabbler in our medium?  Anyone care to call Brian Bolland names for being slow?  Perhaps KILLING JOKE should have been given to a DC artist who was doing a monthly book, as a reward for productivity.

I'm sorry that I cannot do a comic a month; I wish I could.  So does my accountant.  But I cannot.  "A man's got to know his limitations" as a wise man with a loaded gun once said.  I know what I can and cannot do.  Faced with the choice of hacking out a mediocre Adam Hughes comic 12 times a year or working at my own natural pace and doing work that I can be proud of, I personally choose quality over quantity.  It's not for everyone, it's just how this cat is wired.  I don't think EVERYONE should slow down and work at this pace.  I think everyone should find their niche and excel at what they do best.

And before anyone decides to get all 'harrumphy' on me, I am not saying that everyone who does a book a month hacks it out.  My firm implication is that I and I alone would be a hack, if I were to produce work at that personally unnatural pace.

I understand the nature of the business, and of fandom.  I remember what it was like as a boy, wondering why Michael Golden didn't do a monthly book.  However, I never considered to imply his professionalism was suspect; I just assumed what he did took more time.  Expecting me to draw as fast as John Byrne is like me expecting YOU (whoever you may be) to jump 12 feet in the air.  You can't?  But Michael Jordan can.  And everybody is the same, right?

Please just sit back, enjoy all manner of comics as they come out.  It's a fabulous art form with room for all manner of creative endeavor.  If you care to, please try out my 6 issues of ALL-STAR WONDER WOMAN when I'm finished with them.  I'm really excited about this assignment, and I think I have some cool stuff in store.  If you cannot, however, approach the notion of me doing a book like this with something resembling basic human optimism and enthusiasm, then I'l thank you to kiss my man-sized ass.

AH!

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Roger A Ott II
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:36am | IP Logged | 13  

Back in the early 80's when I was a lad of 10 or 12 years, I had an amazing mental calendar of comic book schedules.  I knew what week every one of the 20+ comics I bought should have been in the spinner rack, and I only remember a tiny handful of instances when a book I was expecting wasn't there.  More often than not, it was there the next week.  I can't remember a single time when a book was months late.

How it got to where it is today just saddens me.

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John Byrne
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:41am | IP Logged | 14  

I'm sorry that I cannot do a comic a month; I wish I could.

***

So do I!!

Welcome to the Forum, Adam. Don't be a stranger.

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Ted Pugliese
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:42am | IP Logged | 15  

Adam, I look forward to ASWW for two reasons.  One, Wonder Woman is my younger daughters favorite hero, and I will be buying them for her.  Two, I like your work.  I discovered you in JLI way back when and thought you were the right guy to replace Kevin, though I was sad to see him leave.  My question, if you choose to answer it, is were you able to produce a monthly back then?  I know your work has evolved over time and wonder if your timelines have evolved with your work.  Thank you.
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Ted Pugliese
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:43am | IP Logged | 16  

Wouldn't it be nice to see JB take over ASWW with issue 7?

Ahhh...

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Jason Fulton
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:45am | IP Logged | 17  

I think there's a difference between someone like Adam Hughes saying "This is what I can do, and I'm not responsible for the company soliciting it incorrectly" and Random 'Hot' Talentbot 314525 saying "Fuck off, you'll get it when you get it, and you're lucky that you're even getting that! PS - Fuck off!".

My guess is that the difference is....class.

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Ted Downum
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:46am | IP Logged | 18  

What JB said, Adam.  It's good to have you here.  I'll definitely check out All-Star Wonder Woman--I'm a big fan of your work.

 



Edited by Ted Downum on 27 July 2006 at 10:47am
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Roger A Ott II
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:46am | IP Logged | 19  

Adam Hughes: I'm sorry that I cannot do a comic a month; I wish I could.  So does my accountant.  But I cannot.  "A man's got to know his limitations" as a wise man with a loaded gun once said.  I know what I can and cannot do.

But you're also taking the necessary steps to ensure that the book will come out monthly, and that means a lot.  The people that get me, personally, riled up are the ones who take on a monthly assignment and then don't bother to hold their end of the bargain.  For instance, Adi Granov should never have accepted the assignment to do the monthly IRON MAN comic book back in 2004.  It took a year and a half to get 6 issues.  That's a quarterly comic.  And a lost reader in me.

edit to add: Not entirely Granov's fault, though.  That Marvel editorial thought a painter could produce six monthly issues just tells me they have their heads in the wrong place.



Edited by Roger A Ott II on 27 July 2006 at 10:49am
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Ted Pugliese
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:48am | IP Logged | 20  

Iron Man lost me too, with issue #3.  Doea Marvel know this happens?  More importantly, do they care?  Seems that they do not, so I guess the real question is why not?
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Charles Valderrama
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 10:56am | IP Logged | 21  

Welcome a board, Adam!!! Hope you continue to post here from
time to time. While i do admire your work i do wish you could
handle a monthly title. Still, i DO look forward to your Wonder Woman
issues.

( And i would gladly call Brian Bolland names for being slow!!! Maybe
it'll get HIM to post here too!!!)

-C!
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Kelly Sheppard
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 11:07am | IP Logged | 22  

What I don't understand with the arcs geared towards the trades why any top
tier book would ship late. My goodness, you can have two artists. One for
arcA and one for arcB. Heck that is how Uncanny X-Men had 17 issues come
out in 2004 . You plan ahead, arcB starts being prepared while arc one is
starting to go to press. I can understand on a new series not wanting to
have that investment but by issue 4 you should have a good idea if it is
selling well enough to justify a full year's worth of comics. That is a two
issue lag to work with.
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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 11:11am | IP Logged | 23  

Next, may I be allowed to take umbrage at the suggestion that anyone who
does not/can not create a monthly comic is either casual or (more
offensively) unprofessional and irresponsible. I realize that this is the wrong
place to suggest this, but the notion that you are not a real comic artist if
you can't do a monthly book is archaic.

---

I don't think that most people were saying that. I think the general
consensus is that if an artist works at a slower pace, the comic companies
should make sure the issues are scheduled after the work is completed,
which is what you seem to be doing with ASWW.
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Ted Pugliese
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 11:19am | IP Logged | 24  

the comic companies should make sure the issues are scheduled after the work is completed

What a briliant idea!  Why does Marvel simply fail to grasp this simple, established notion, especially with mini-series?

Carlin seems to get it.  Isn't he waiting for JB's JLA:Classified arc to be finished before scheduling it?

 

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Chris Blaise
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Posted: 27 July 2006 at 11:24am | IP Logged | 25  

Kelly, your idea makes too much sense!

I'm sure the complaint would be that it costs too much to have a couple of teams working at the same time.  While it seems true initially, it also seems that long term it would work out to a more reliable monthly AND trade schedule.

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