For today's update I just wanted to share one uncoloured panel with you from the comic.
I wanted to share this one for two reasons. First, it's the first time we've shown you another of the major players from the novel, Jamut Mantrapper. I'm sure you'll agree that Gavin has caught the greedy mercenary pretty much perfectly.
The second reason is that it's another panel featuring an Easter egg for Fighting Fantasy fans, though I'm not telling you where it is. Gavin is filling the comic with these little treats, both from the Fighting Fantasy series and beyond, so it will very much reward the eagle-eyed once it's completed.
Last Thursday I promised you that I would post an update every Monday or Tuesday. However this week, what with Thursday only being a few days ago and Gavin spending the weekend at London Super Comic Con, there isn't really much in the way of an actual update to give you.
Instead, I thought some of you might like to see this picture Gavin did at the convention. Jonathan Green, author and creator of numerous Fighting Fantasy books and projects, as well as many other gamebooks and novels, approached Gavin and commissioned a portrait of himself as a zombie. This was the result.
You may have seen the announcement yesterday that a new graphic novel based on Ian Livingstone's classic Fighting Fantasy adventure, Freeway Fighter, is going to be in the works soon from Andi Ewington, Simon Coleby and Jonathan Green. I don't know about you, but I'm very excited by the prospect of this new venture. I think the world of Freeway Fighter is one which is just begging to be explored some more. There's already a Facebook group in place which you should definitely join to stay on top of news about the comic. Naturally, the announcement of another FF comic has led to some questions from backers as to when they're likely to see Trolltooth Wars.
In a previous update, I said that we were aiming to release the book in the spring, which I understand is a little vague for some, Spring being a three month window from March 20th to June 19th. At that point, I wasn't able to be more specific, because it entirely depended on how much work Gavin had left to do with regards to the art for the book at this point of the year.
Well, while I still can't give you an exact release date, I can at least tell you that we're still hoping to hit a Spring release, though it's likely to be the end of Spring. Gavin is still working hard on the pages, and has cleared his schedule of all other commitments to make sure the book will be ready as soon as possible. He has one more convention this weekend (London Super Comic Con, where anyone who wants to say hi will find him at table A58 in Artist's Alley), and then that's it until Trolltooth Wars has been released.
I thought it might be helpful to tell you guys a little more about the overall process for the making of this graphic novel. Gavin works from a script that was written by me before the Kickstarter launched. He pencils, inks, colours and letters each page himself, but even when a page is finished, there's more to do. Each page has to be sent to Steve Jackson for approval. In a few cases, this then leads to further suggestions from Steve. Gavin then makes the relevant changes (if required). He usually has several pages on the go at once, in various stages of the process, preferring to pencil a load, then ink them, etc. It's this part of production which was always going to take the longest to complete.
Once the art is finalised, the book will be sent off to the printer pretty much immediately. A number of comics which get Kickstarted get further delayed at this point because people are still getting quotes from different printers before actually sending the files off (to give an example without naming names, I'm still waiting for a comic which was due in September 2014, simply because they took a long time to find a printer). I'm happy to report that this will not be the case with us. We already have a printer lined up that we know can handle this graphic novel, as they've already been responsible for printing a number of top quality independent comics throughout the UK. Once they receive the files, they'll print up a proof copy of the book and send that to us so we can make sure it all looks good and there are no mistakes. As soon as the printer gets word that we're happy with it, they'll print the entire batch up and send it onto me, and from there, it will get sent straight to you.
Obviously, books requiring signatures and sketches will take a little longer to get sent out, but we're going to make sure that this all gets done as quickly as possible so that no backers are waiting much longer than others. We're also not going to release the book to the general public until the last Kickstarter copy has gone in the mail.
The rest of the rewards should all be here before the books themselves (I already have a box full of copies of You Are The Hero here for backers who pledged to receive that as well), to help ensure that when the books arrive, we can start sending all your rewards immediately.
I hope this post has cleared a few things up for some of you. While I have been trying to post an update every fortnight (bar a day here and there), I understand that some of you still feel this isn't frequent enough. With that in mind, I'm going to try and increase this output to one a week, every Monday or Tuesday, even if there's nothing new to report. In the mean time, please enjoy a couple of Gavin's completed pages, and another page currently awaiting colours and letters, which we managed to include a special cameo in.
This coming Saturday (February 6th) sees the second True Believers Comic Festival being held at Cheltenham Race Course, and Gavin and I will be there!
We attended the first event last year, and it was a really fun day. This con promises to only get better year on year, so it's well worth coming along. You'll find us behind the Stiffs table C7 and C8 on the below map, alongside my Stiffs co-writer Joe Glass.
Tickets for the convention can be purchased here. If any of you are planning on attending, please stop by the table and say hi! We'd love to see you.
I've had a few backers get in contact looking to change their addresses on their surveys, who aren't sure how to do it. Thought I'd try and help out by posting a handy how to guide here for all of you. I'm leaving surveys open right up until the last minute, so that I can make sure all details are as up to date as possible when the books get sent out.
Now, please note, this guide only works on the main site. I've contacted Kickstarter, and they've told me that it's not currently possible to update the addresses on their various apps, so if you do need to change yours, you'll need to log onto the site itself on your computer or tablet.
Also, please forgive how basic my visual aids are. I'm not great at this technology lark.
Log into Kickstarter, and click on your user icon in the top right corner of the screen.
This should bring up a list of the most recent projects you have backed. Click on the "View All" button.
This should bring up a list of all the projects you've backed, each of which will have a blue button with a cross on it. Click on the cross.
This should bring up a slightly more detailed look at that particular project. There should be a tab that says "Survey". Click on this.
This will bring up your response to the original survey which was sent out. Underneath your address, there should be an "Edit Address" button. Click on this, and you'll be taken to a screen where you can change your address and submit the new one.