Hey, Occupy Wall Street people… for the record?
Cura stands with you.
Play it loud. Sing it loud.
Yes WE can.
I was asked the other night if Breaking Bad influenced Cura. Both involve a narrator slowly slipping down a path toward their own demise. Both involve people who work in schools for little reward. Both involve guys who get involved in illicit things in order to help better themselves. But no. Breaking Bad influences another graphic novel I’m working on, and I’ll certainly talk about it at some point in the near future, but it didn’t make Cura.
There’s no one comic or song or movie that influences Cura, but there are certainly many comics, songs, and movies that influence me and inspire me to lurch at greatness.
Of late, the simplest and most profound is, oddly, one that pretty much everyone seems to already dig. And loathe.
I don’t give a tinker’s damn about the changes, honestly, because it’s about 1/1000th of the movies. What I DO give a damn about, however, is that feeling of being teleported from world to world with people who honestly want to better things and keep facing adversity in new and creative ways.
It’s strange. People who “got” Star Wars when they were five don’t really “get” it once they’re older. It’s all cheesy now, where before they absolutely loved a movie because a woman had buns for hair.
They love the original trilogy, but then they hate the new one because it isn’t as profound and magnificent as the first two movies for them. At 5. When things are their absolute best.
These people will be continually disappointed as, through life, they learn that when you sing another verse of a song, it’s never going to be as good as the first verse. Or the chorus. It’s my personal belief that A New Hope was Lucas’ test run for Empire, and after that he’d already told his story and was just riffing on the finished theme (in awesome ways, admittedly). I don’t begrudge him it. I’d like three more watered down retries, in fact, because a bad Star Wars movie, even Phantom Menace, is ten times a Transformers. An “I Know What You Did Last Summer.” A (cringe) BATTLESHIP.
I have friends who shit on pulp/serial based movies because of plot points. Holy shit, Indiana Jones survived a nuke in a fridge? Are you KIDDING ME? They will break into apoplectic fits, sweat, and curse my name when I say I liked the new one. But then, they weren’t inspired to make a comic by the visual of that mushroom cloud, were they?
It’s those kids who never got to enjoy 9/10ths of punk rock because X band wasn’t punk enough. Fuck those guys. Like what you like, and don’t be ashamed of it.
So yeah. Star Wars. I’ve decided to unashamedly like it, even the bad parts, in the same way I love Superman flicking peanuts at that mirror in Superman 3. At a certain point you stop giving a fuck about the expectations assigned to a movie, and you remember being five and watching Superman fight Clark Kent. And then you write a story with the subtext of Superman fighting his darker self from another universe.
And then you’re okay with that.
Bad news and good news… the bad? The Extra-dimensional Translocator mold failed. That means no EDT with this round of trades (I’ll probably have it nailed down soon, and I’ll make them for sale ASAP).
That said, the good news is, I will be OPENING PRE-ORDERS in just a few hours here, as soon as I can set it up in the store, with revised packages and such. (Don’t worry, you’ll get a new chart, and I’ll make it super easy to understand and choose.
Get ready! Here we go!
Well folks, here it is! Finally, you can pre order Cura volume two! It’s in the can! Cura Te Ipsum Volume 2: A Priori will be available on NOVEMBER 9TH. I will ship November 8th.
There are multiple packages available. If the above pictures don’t give you the idea, here’s a text version and a graph version of what you can get:
A: Trade 2.
B: Trade 1 and 2.
C: Trade 2 and one custom sketch.
D: Trade 1 and 2 and one custom sketch.
E: Trade 2 and an “Evolution” tee.
F: Trade 1 and 2 and an “Evolution” tee.
G: Trade 2, one custom sketch, and an “Evolution” tee.
H: Trade 1 and 2, one custom sketch, and an “Evolution” tee.
I: Trade 2, an “Evolution” tee, and a massive 6X10 custom sketch!
ULTIMATE: Trade 1 and 2, an “Evolution” tee, and a massive 6X10 custom sketch!
This is the cover for the trade (click to make larger, if you want):
The trade will feature 26 pages of bonus material, including EXCLUSIVE color images, script to scene, early designs you won’t find anywhere else, and a series of promo images that tease Year Two!
This is the image that will be on the tee (for some reason smart phones have issues with this image. It’s white characters with a black background and a red logo, if it’s inverted):
The image on the tee will be 11 inches wide on the chest, and have two colors. Please specify size when ordering, or I will have to send you an email and bug you for it!
The custom sketches will be ANY character you want, and they can be doing specific things within reason (if you ask for something super complex, I’ll bounce it off Dex, but we aim to please). PLEASE NOTE: CUSTOM SKETCHES MUST BE ORDERED BY NOVEMBER 1. Otherwise, there’s a chance you’ll have to get a random Cura sketch (Which isn’t bad, honestly. I haven’t seen a Dex sketch that sucked yet!)
Head on over to the STORE and order now!
I don’t know about you, but I blare music when I write. Usually stuff relating to what I’m writing, in the same mood, etc. I’ve talked about how Nicole Atkins has helped with Cura. There are a number of bands that are consistently revolving around what I do.
For Hal Taylor, my detective/PI series character, the best number one super rocking band is Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers. I’ve been listening to them for fifteen years now, since they were The Refreshments, and they never fail to help me get through a tough patch or writing or life.
The love affair started with a six dollar CD in Tower Records in 1995, and it came from staying up late on a Sunday night (12-2, 120 Minutes) and seeing this video:
Go ahead and hit play… and don’t keep reading. Listen to the lyrics. They’re fucking rad.
It wasn’t so much the music (which was slightly country for my tastes at the time) so much as it was the lyrics. And then I listened to the whole album, which similarly rocked, and it and the subsequent album, The Bottle and Fresh Horses, became a bit of a soundtrack for me for the ages of 17 and 18. This song helped me through a bad breakup:
You probably know the band from the theme song for King of the Hill.
They broke up (I don’t know the reason), and became Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers. Since then, it’s been up and up. They helped me through a lot of the Bush administration. Their songs are blue collar, hopeful, romantic, and they speak to a very personal experience. The lyrics and the music combine. Many times an artist is just the music, or just the lyrics, even, and when they marry well, you get a Roger Clyne style experience.
I would start with the album “Honky Tonk Union,” but it’s really a case where you can’t go wrong no matter where you go. Here’s a few of my fave Roger Clyne/Refreshment songs:
Green and Dumb
Leaky Little Boat
Love, Come Lighten My Load
Best of all? They’re indie artists making it without having to rely on corporate types, like me. I hope I can keep that up.
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