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Wizard World Ohio Presents: HEARTLAND

Posted On Tuesday, October 28, 2014

    When it comes to comic books, its easy to think of states like New York and California having the most impact.  With being home to the two LARGEST publishers of mainstream content, as well as coastal rivals over hosting the LARGEST conventions in the US, both put up a compelling argument for being the most notable state in comic production.  But looks can be deceiving.

    OHIO!  Not Krypton or even Kansas can claim being the birthplace of THE first superhero -- but the Buckeye State can!  Legendary creators, Jerry Seigel and Joe Shuster were residents of Ohio (in Great Lake bordering city of Cleveland to be exact) when they crafted, SUPERMAN, the cultural phenom that kickstarted the superhero mythos as we know it today.  And that air of creativity has lasted and flourished in a number of capacities, through a multitude of hands and an undying love of the comic form.

     At this year's Wizard World Ohio, I aim to shine a spotlight on those creators -- both past and present, who call Ohio their home and bring their characters and stories to life, right here in "America's Heartland."  On Saturday, from 12:30-1:15pm, I'll be joined by creators from across the state as we share our work to existing fans and new ones alike!

The marriage between comics and Ohio has been long and fruitful, with many comic notables from Joe Shuster, Jerry Siegel, Harvey Pekar, Paul Pope and MANY more, calling the Buckeye State their home. That tradition of creativity and innovation continues on both the mainstream and alternative fronts, with new and established voices for the comic medium. Introduce yourself to the creators who live just next door and their wonderful works!

4 Years Later...

Posted On Thursday, October 16, 2014

4 years, man.  A time frame typically revered for the summer Olympics and Presidential terms, now quantifies how long I've been on this journey of making comics as my full-time, one-and-only gig.  I took that step.  I made that leap.  I shuffled loose the mortal toil of the 9-to-5 daily grind, FINALLY setting myself free to realize my wildest dreams…and let me tell you, a great many of them have come true!

In just these last four years, I've EXPONENTIALLY outpaced the earnest start of my comics career that I THOUGHT I had mustered in the years prior.  The idea that you don't really know how far you've gone until you get there is so much MORE than true for me.  I thought I had done something.  Been somebody.  I was decently known in my little sector of the 2814 (or so I thought), having racked up some fans, friends and comrades in the continually growing comics mecca of central Ohio.


 I hadn't done nuthin' (if you'll pardon the double-negative)!  Not socially, not creatively, and certainly not professionally.  Don't get me wrong; my aim ISN'T to discount the connects and creations I had made up to that point -- just recognizing, with a little retrospective recognition, how large that ripple grew to be! 

Then vs. Now BY THE NUMBERS:
Average shows a year - 4 to 15.75 (Growth of 393%)
Books with my name of them - 7 to 34 (Growth of 485%)
Max distance traveled (for a show) - (then) Chicago, IL (now) Seattle, WA (Growth of 634%)

Things grew, as I said, exponentially -- a verbose term usually, but I promise -- if those numbers don't wow you at least a little, you may already be dead...or superstar colorist, Jeff Balke!  
NOW!  Well...sorta...Appleseed 2013!  But still!

It's true; I have seen some things and been some places.  But, it's only informed me of how truly far STILL, I have to go before my name resonates with the Geoff Johns, Brian Michael Bendises, Jim Lees and Joe Quesadas of the world!  That's why, despite my growth and accomplishments thus far, I'm calling this the "High School Years" of my career!  In fact, I'm reviving our brand magazine, On The Horizon with 'The Year Book Issue' -- a COMPLETE editorial of my take on what these past four years have done and mean. 

At its core, I believe this gave me a taste of what life has in store, IF I can maintain my focus and dedication.  These years have been wonderful and dynamic!  I look forward, not just to four more, but DECADES -- all spent in pursuit of story and with all the love of comics I can muster! 

But...before I go.  How about a hint of what's to come...?

Oh my?!

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