About this project
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Welcome to the World of "WHISPERING HEARTS..."
WHAT IS WHISPERING HEARTS?
Whispering Hearts is a graphic soap opera – a traditional tv soap but done in a comic book format. Consider it an "illustrated romance novel" full of twists and turns, classic scenes of love and romance, dashed hopes, last minute miracles and of course, drama! At its core, Whispering Hearts is about our changing world, about transitions, centering around heroine Pearl Ainsley as she guides her struggling family newspaper into the digital age. Unfortunately for Pearl, her family wants nothing to do with the "new era of digital" and they are making her life a living hell as she struggles to save the family business!
THE FUTURE OF WHISPERING HEARTS
Whispering Hearts is meant to be an ongoing monthly comic magazine. Our plan is to have it in the 100+ page magazine size/format and hopefully stocked alongside other soap related magazines on the rack. Although our focus is mainly on newsstand distribution, don't worry comic fans – we WILL be sold in comic book stores! Aside from the adventures of Pearl and Garrick we will also feature interviews with stars who appear in serial formats as well as include classic reprints of past romance comics along with a popular new Telenovela comic (in both English and Spanish) called The Game Of Amor. So you will be getting a lot of "soap romance comic" bang for your buck!
WHO AM I AND WHY A SOAP OPERA COMIC BOOK?
My name is David Watkins and I've been making comics since 1989. If you are a comic fan you might know me from my creation Nick Ryan: The Skull who stalked the night and brought fear into the hearts of evil doers, or the classic Union of Justice. I've been running Mansion Comics since 1992. Here's a nice review about me from AC Comics:
"His unique take on the standard comic book conventions ... holds a fond place in the hearts of many a long time collector... David never lost his interest in tin the comic medium ... Witness his recent comic book scripting for AC in FEMFORCE #151 and Miss Masque Strikes Again #1. Well, Watkins is back in the comic world again, bigger and better than ever ..."
So I think I may be the perfect guy to make a soap comic book! I've loved comics as long as I've loved soaps – ever since my babysitter plopped me down on the couch with her to watch her "stories." It's a great form of entertainment that has found its way into just about every medium we have, including comics! You may have noticed: The X-Men are a soap opera. Lost was a soap opera. In a way you could even consider Archie a soap opera!
Frankly, I really don't want to see soap operas fade away. This comic is my attempt at a stopgap. I want to preserve them and hopefully restore them to their former glory! Hey, if Whispering Hearts proves popular enough maybe it can spin-off into a soap web series or television! (A fella can dream!)
As I was developing my idea, I dreamed someday perhaps a real life soap queen might consider becoming the live version of Pearl Ainsley. After much deliberation I found the perfect actress in Cady McClain and I'm thrilled she said yes! Turns out she's been a huge comic book fan all these years, with a copy of Stan Lee's The Superhero Women of Marvel by her bedside since she was seven years old. Now her likeness will be used for our dashing newspaper heiress Pearl and she'll also appear both on the covers periodically and in person as our "face in the world" introducing our book to the both the soap and comic communities. She is also a twitter fan. Check her out on "Reading Twitter with Cady!"
One thing we know about soaps is that "all glory goes to the story," which is why we are super excited to have Sara Bibel on board as our head writer. If you are a soap fan, you might know Sara. She is an Emmy Award winning writer straight from writing staff of The Young and The Restless. Passionate, talented and committed, we believe she's the perfect gal to spin our tale. Check out her Twitter Feed, "Deep Soap."
If you are a comic book fan, you might know our artist, Gordon Purcell, for his excellent photo realistic portrayals of actors in comics from TV Franchises such as The X-files, Xena, Lost in Space, Godzilla, The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, Barb Wire, The Terminator and the Star Trek series. He's also worked on fan favorites such as Flare, Flash, The Fantastic Four, Superman, Wonder Man, Hulk vs. Nova, Moon Knight, Race Warriors, Kolchak, The Night Stalker... the list goes on!!!
If you arent already aware, our leading lady, Cady McClain, is a two time Emmy winner for her roles on As The World Turns and All My Children. We feel with her acting as inspiration, our lead character Pearl Ainsely will come to life in the most compelling way possible. She's also agreed to lend her considerable experience and insight as we develop our plucky heroine's tale of woe, and has offered several lunches and phone calls with YOU the fans!
As you might be able to tell, we're excited about this!! There's so much to share. Want more than one item but the system won't let you choose multiple? We've got you covered. Choose one of the various Mystery rewards that totals the amount of the two or more items you want. Then send me an email with what you want exactly and you'll get it. We want YOU to feel the love and gratitude we have for you. We'll even give you two things for the price of one if you've chosen the $200 or above level! Or just make a donation and leave the gifts for those who might really want them (as a number of these are limited). It's up to you. Also, any level $15 and up automatically gets you a copy of the book!
I know, that's a lot of scratch. Most comic projects are not seeking that much. We are because we're going mass market. We want to make a powerful impact. We think the best way to do that is to get on the magazine racks in grocery stores, drug stores, and wherever magazines are sold. This means we need to print and ship roughly 80,000 more copies than a typical indie comic.
Roughly $20K of our budget goes toward production and $40K to printing/shipping/promotion. We figure can launch three issues with this amount and then once we are established advertising and sales will keep us going for a long time after that.
All new magazines struggle at first and so your funding will be a huge help until we get our advertisers in step with us. Your contributions will make an enormous difference as to whether we reach our goal for launch or helping us beyond that into many more issues.
We passionately believe this is going to be a great comic book that will change the way people think of soap operas as well as give back to soap and comic fans a heck of a lot of satisfaction. We think there is a lot of fun to be had in the soap opera fantasy world and hope you do, too!
Thank you so much for considering a donation to our cause. This could never happen without YOU – the fans of soaps and comics. We really appreciate your hard earned buck, so please check out all the fun goodies we are offering to thank you and let us know how WE can make YOU happy in return.
With comic flare, Dave
A NOTE FROM CADY:
I feel, along with Mansion Comics, that the medium of "soap opera's" are, like jazz, one of America's few original art forms.
Soap Operas and comic books have much in common: a fantastical visual world with characters you dream of being, outrageous situations that rarely occur in one's own life, and perhaps most importantly, passion. The characters in both soap operas and comic books are always passionate about what they believe in and committed to getting what they want. So are we!
The classic tropes in the two mediums are often close to the same: the dramatic close ups, the internal anguish of the lead heroine, the fights between two competing heroes, the historic hatred between two families – these are all situations often found both comics and soap operas.
When the daytime soaps started getting cancelled, it was like the death of a beloved grandmother. Why were the networks killing a tradition so many held dear? After much agonizing over the foolishness of their decision, Mansion Comics decided to do something about it.
Our goal is to start a soap revolution, starting from the ground up. We think a romance comic book might just be the way to begin. Women who love comics could find a romance comic to be a fun twist on the usual, and men who watch soaps might find reading a comic a great way to return to one of their favorite escapes.
Thank you so much to the the fans of both soaps and comics for your help at this critical juncture.
More former As The World Turns actors join Whispering Hearts as guest stars. Jon Lindstrom, Terri Conn, Austin Peck. Austin will also draw a story written by Cady.
Here are some more examples of art from Gordon Purcell!
WHAT ABOUT OUR YOUTHS?
Whispering Hearts is written for adults and that is the audience we're marketing the book for just like a television soap. But just like a traditional soap opera teens and some pre-teens watch them as well. The stories in Whispering Hearts will be intelligent and romantic and edgy. But have no fear if your daughter or little sister or even little brother grab a copy from you. A kid can read Whispering Hearts along with you just like the good old days of romance comics. My daughter can't wait for the first issue. Check out her video. :)
FAVORITE ROMANCE COVERS FROM THE GOLDEN AGE
From the 40's to the 70's romance comics were everywhere and dominated the newsstands almost as much as westerns. These are some of my favorte covers from that era.
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