Formerly the Books of Era, this new graphic novel will bring to print the first three chapters of my epic fantasy work.
To help bring this project off my drafting table and into the public’s hands, I am holding a crowd funding campaign through IndieGoGo.
The World of Era
“The Chronicles of Era: Whispers of Redemption Book I” will introduce readers to the world of Era. The great architect, Illam, created the greatest city, a paradise fit for gods. He shepherd humanity into the City of Heaven and they lived for thousands of years within its protective rings. When the The Adversary brought about the cataclysm that felled the greatest city, the survivors were returned to a harsh and brutal world. Mankind rebuilt civilization, but it was a pale reflection of their former glory. Their history was reduced to myths and legends, the old gods had gone to sleep.
Seth was peacefully living in the small village on the edge of the Illiam Imperium, until Sarah returned and said that he had to leave with her. In his travels Seth met Sidrich, another Joshian boy who escaped enslavement, and Caitleth, a secretive girl from the Core of the Imperium who searched for adventure. Together they were caught between the struggles of the Imperium and the Joshian rebellion.
All the while, secret forces are edging closer to awakening the Gifted Ones and reopen the gates of paradise…
The Chronicles of Era will be 104 pages. With the exception of three colour chapter breaks, the book filled with detailed black and white line art. At the end is a glossary containing the characters of Era, terms, geography and a map.
Influences and Motivation
I’ve been working on Era for a long time. The world first started as a science fiction world, called The Body Dealers. It was created between a myself and a few other students in the U of M Fine Arts program. It was a weird and wild mixture of science fiction, featuring Frankenstein genetic experiments, mutated gnomes, trans-dimensional techno-priests wrapped up in a Bladerunner like world. Like many such projects, we drifted on to our own ideas, but bits and pieces of The Body Dealers stuck around and through a bizarre alchemical process became the fantasy world that Era is today. Elements of that science fiction world remain, but with a little more adventure, classic myths and steampunk technology.
I eventually reached a point where I wanted to settle on the story I would tell and to bring Era to print. I am not shy about showing off my art to others. My writing is another matter. I am filled with indecision and anxiety at the thought of showing off my writing, and so, while I love to write stories, my technical skills fell behind to my drawing abilities. I was determined to do something with Era, so I sucked it up and started to show it to my girlfriend (now my wife) and a few close friends. Eventually, I listened to their feedback (not going to lie, it can take me awhile to accept and embrace even the most constructive of criticism), and worked at refining the story. I drew the first chapter, did a limited print run, labeling to as a preview, and went to Wizard World Chicago to get a broader feedback. I received some interest and a publisher who a friend was working with was open to seeing more. So I worked on more, drawing out nearly 120 pages.
Then I got a little distracted with some (paying) projects, marriage, house hunting, children and making a big life altering move to being a freelance illustrator (not to say that marriage or kids are not big moves. Kids especially can be…an interesting challenge).
I was recently part of a documentary, Artists by Night, which filmed the lives of three writers/artists who make comics around their other responsibilities—work and family. The director, Kelly, and comic book colleague GMB Chomichuk, asked a lot about Era and so the fires started to get stoked. Eventually, I decided to put some finishing touches on the work I had done and that work is about to be put forth to the public.
What You Can Do
I am trying to get the book ready in time for the Central Canada Comic Con (C4) where I will be able to give Era the greatest exposure. The IndieGoGo campaign is another means of getting exposure, as well as some funds to help smooth this process.
What I need is some help sharing it. I hope there are lots of people that I know that will be interested in The Chronicles of Era, but there are hopefully even more people you know. If you like what you see, shout it out, share it, Tweet it, Like it. Let people know it’s coming.
I try to always share and support the stuff I find cool and interesting. I can’t always lend support to a project—the randomness that is freelance work combined with the erratic cyclones that are two toddlers—but I share because maybe, just maybe, there is someone that follows me that sees something that I like and they can lend support. A ripple effect. So help out, share. You never know who might be interested.
I know this is long. One last thing. A HUGE thank you to my wife for supporting me during this frantic crunch in bringing The Chronicles of Era to print. Also, an almost equally huge thanks to Greg Waller who found time to colour one of the chapter breaks and retrieve a few high resolution copies he had done previously. I even asked that it didn’t have to be super detailed or well rendered and he still made an amazingly coloured cover (posted below).
Check out the IndieGoGo campaign here.
Thank you everyone.