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#488: Toy Story

July 9, 2010

Notes from the Manager

Related Strips: #140: The One About Shrek the Third; #268: Old School, Part One

Tomorrow is officially the 5th anniversary of Multiplex, so there will be a few guest strips in celebration of that little milestone!

I know some of you don't like guest strips, but don't worry — I'll still be putting up my regular updates. There will just be a few extra ones by other cartoonists, like T.J. Tague, whose guest strip from Wednesday is now up in the Guest Strips section.

Here's a short Book 1 update for everybody: the proofing stage for Book 1 is winding down (the couple of passes were relatively mistake-free, finally), and I've finally arrived at a universally well-liked cover design, so I just need to put the finishing touches on the illustration and I'll be good to send it to the printer by the end of next week. Then it'll be time for… printer proofs! Joy.

About this strip, it's not really important to mention, but if you wanted to go out and buy an action figure of Toothless from How to Train Your Dragon… you pretty much can't. There are "Night Fury" action figures with a healthy tail, but none actually of Toothless, with the missing fin and Hiccup's saddle & rig. And the moveable wings on the 7" deluxe Night Fury figure seems to have a habit of falling out, if the Amazon reviews are any indication.

I have a hunch that the whole "Night Fury" thing is because they added the whole bit about Toothless's tail late in the game, and the toy manufacturer was forced to just change the name on the packaging or redo the mold. (I don't have any reason to believe this, other than a couple of early stills of the movie featuring Toothless with an unmistakably whole tail.)  As a reader in the toy business pointed out to me, it takes 6–8 months to get a toy from the concept to the shelves, so some significant, late story changes could have left the manufacturer without the time to redo the figure. 

While that sort of change would be excusable, what's not excusable is not having an Astrid action figure. While I'm reluctant to take guesses as to why (because she's a girl), when two of your three main characters don't even have figures, something's not right.

Hopefully by the time the sequel comes out, someone will put out a more complete action figure line for How to Train Your Dragon, because I totally want some. I just want to actually have Toothless, not a stand-in.

And yes, I feel a bit like David Willis right now.

Also, Mr. Mister was awesome:


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Tell me a story. (Looking for a prose writer for an eBook single.)

Sunday, March 29, 2015

I want to take a foray into electronic publishing.

I am looking for a (prose) writer to provide a short story, novella or non-fiction story that I will turn into an iBooks-formatted eBook for sale (in the iBookstore), released under my Chase Sequence publishing imprint. Chase Sequence published Multiplex: There and Back Again, which won the 2014 IPBA Gold Medal for Best Graphic Novel/Drawn Book–Humor/Cartoon, so technically it is an award-winning publisher.

There is no limitation with regard to genre, but I will say that my taste in prose leans strongly toward literary fiction and non-fiction, and toward characters, psychology, and well-written prose over plot. (Margaret Atwood is my favorite writer.)

What to Submit: A pitch for a 30+ page, prose short story/novella/non-fiction piece. No comics — no picture books. If you have already written the short story, great, but it must be previously unpublished. Please include links or URLs to a resumé and examples of previous published work would be helpful, to give me a feel for your voice.

Send questions (or submissions) to gordon at multiplexcomic.com.

The Terms: No money up front, but 50% of the cover price in exchange for one year of exclusivity (from the date of publication). The writer retains all other rights to their story. These will be sold via iBooks only (at least at first), which means that Apple will get 30% and I will get 20% for my contributions: I will edit the story; I will design and produce the eBook; I will illustrate a cover for it (or hire someone else to, if I’m not the best fit for the story); I will help promote it.

Please submit your pitch before April 30, 2015. I will notify the selected writer(s) I am interested in working with as soon as possible after that.

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