Disabled veteran fired by SJWs

SJWs don’t care who you are if you violate their narrative.

Will Caligan, a Desert Shield and Desert Storm veteran suffering Gulf War Syndrome, is out of a job. What caused him to lose it is one more weight on the scale that is tipping America toward total insanity. Caligan is a talented comics artist who contracted with Short Fuse Media Group to produce comic books. If you have followed any of my investigations into #Comicsgate you would know that the comics industry has been completely taken over by rabid alt-left types who spent their days devising ways to destroy beloved characters by “diversifying” them into an approved SJW mold. Caligan, a conservative Christian, had little chance of survival in that environment. One hint of wrongthink could spell curtains for any artist, writer or producer in today’s comics climate. In Caligan’s case, he made the catastrophic mistake of voicing his opinion about a pop culture story about a straight man rebuffing a kiss from a transwoman….

Caligan contacted Sean Mack, his boss at Short Fuse Media Group, who seemed to take the whole thing in stride at first, writing in a communication, “If it’s not this, it would be for something else. Don’t stress over it. I’m good and we’re dealing with it head on. I have your back!” He quickly changed his tune with no explanation — presumably after being threatened by rabid SJWs and facing too much pressure by the lynch mob — and cut ties with Caligan. “I’m going to have to put some distance between us until you can change the perception people have of you,” wrote Mack.

I’ve been asked to see if there is anything we can do as a comics publisher to help the guy out, and I’m looking into the situation. I’ll do a Periscope in half an hour if I manage to pull a few things together.

UPDATE: All right, I talked to Will and a few others and here is what we’re going to do. On Monday, we’re going to launch a special one-week Freestartr. Freestartr has reduced their usual fee to support the campaign and all of the funds are going to be used to hire Will, a colorist, and a cover artist to do as many comics as their normal rates allow, and to cover the cost of printing them. The comics will be based on the books(s) of one of the Castalia authors, to be chosen by the backers from a list that will be made public on Monday. So far, Nick Cole, Peter Grant, Lawdog, Rolf Nelson, Kai Wai Cheah, and John C. Wright have all made books available at no charge; if you’re a Castalia author who is interested in supporting this project, email me and let me know that you’re in and with which books. The scripts will be adapted from the books for free by Chuck Dixon and me.

Arkhaven will publish the comics in print and digital editions which will be provided to the backers as per the campaign rewards and 50 percent of any subsequent sales will be split between Will, the contributors, and the backer-selected author(s). Arkhaven will take care of all the setup and layout costs.

More details to come this weekend. I don’t know Will, but I agreed to pitch in because he is a Christian and a veteran and I think it is is important to demonstrate to the SJWs and those they have successfully intimidated know that their victims are not going to be forgotten or left behind.

UPDATE: Moira Greyland also graciously offered her support for this project. GAH! (shudders uncontrollably for 15 seconds) While I appreciate her gesture, we will not even consider doing a graphic novel adaptation of The Last Closet, for reasons that anyone who has read it will understand.

EVS follows up

Ethan gave me the chance to speak my piece, so I’ll leave him with the last word for now. However, I will respond to one of his commenters.

James Robins
I don’t get vox man. I mean comparing yourself to Gaiman? Nobody is haruki murakami, hes a great writer. But vox? Come on lol.

It’s pretty simple. I am a better novelist than Neil Gaiman by almost every reasonable measure. Anyone who has read a sufficient variety of both our novels will recognize that pretty easily. Gaiman writes a variant of the same book with the same sort of characters almost every time. Even his Sandman is a Gary Stu of sorts. I have much wider literary range and can write everything from haunting shorts that could almost pass for modern Maupassant to murder mysteries to epic military fantasy. I don’t write myself into my books and I can even successfully pull off the “you genuinely think he’s dead but actually he isn’t” trick without cheating or magic or medical science or anything but pure literary sleight of hand.

George Martin can’t do that despite repeated attempts. Gaiman can’t do it either. And as for Murakami, I have been writing a literary novel inspired by his style for years, although since I am not Japanese, it is more likely to feature a wedding than a suicide. I have no idea when it will be finished, if ever, but I think I might be able to pull it off. And if I can’t get even reasonably close, then I won’t publish it.

I admire Tanith Lee. I admire JRR Tolkien. I admire John C. Wright. I admire China Mieville. I admire Alan Moore. I admire Umberto Eco. The only thing I admire about Gaiman’s writing is his ability to give everything the flavor of a fairy tale. That’s not nothing, it’s actually pretty cool, but it’s very far from the most significant thing. Sure, he sells a lot more books, but then, Dan Brown and Katie Price sell even more and I don’t have any respect for either of their literary abilities.

Anyhow, there is no need to pay any attention to my opinion. Read the reviews of the Arts of Dark and Light instead. Better yet, read the books and decide for yourself.

  • This book contains strong traces of DNA from Umberto Eco and Neal Stephenson but it stands on its own as a fantastically monstrous creature.
  • A Throne of Bones, for me at least, shines like a beacon in this literary twilight.
  • One of the best Fantasy novels I’ve read in the past ten years.
  • Better then GOT. I read a lot of fiction. Vox’s writing skill is superb.
  • I’d put it on par with Tolkien in terms of epic fantasy.
  • I am a big time Tolkien and George Martin fan. Vox’s Selenoth has wiggled its way between Middle Earth and Westeros.
  • Comparisons with Martin are much more useful, and there I agree, Day comes out ahead.
  • Vox Day has catapulted himself into the storied and rarefied rank of writers that sits just below The Master himself. That’s right, I went there. I just said that Vox Day has written a book that is nearly as good as J. R. R. Tolkien’s work.
  • Easily the best epic fantasy series out today.
  • It is the best fantasy book of the past 50 years.

Since we’re on the subject, a bit of Selenoth-related news. Because Kindle Unlimited is becoming increasingly important, we’re going to release a new version of the series specifically formatted for KU. It will be EXACTLY the same text, but divided into more readily digestible 50k to 60k chunks and released under the series name LEGIONS OF BLOOD & BONE.

And yes, I’m still working on A SEA OF SKULLS. And yes, it will be out this year. It will be worth the wait. I think I can safely promise you that. I’m not interested in just getting it out, I am attempting to further raise my writing game.

The Ember War comes to Arkhaven

Richard Fox, the Dragon Award-winning author of the bestselling science fiction series THE EMBER WAR SAGA, has an announcement.

Exciting news! The Ember War will come to a comic store near you! The contract with the comic imprint (either Dark Legion or Arkhaven, publisher’s choice) and fellow writer Jon Del Arroz (who’ll do the prose to script work) are signed. 

We’re excited about this, as we’ve wanted to work with Richard for some time now. The first series will be five issues that cover the events of the initial book; there are currently 9 books in the series. We’ll also have another announcement soon about a collaboration for Castalia House that is definitely going to be of serious interest to fans of a certain science fiction series that has already seen graphic adaptation.

A tale of two reviews

SuperComicFunTime really did not like QUANTUM MORTIS A Man Disrupted #1:

Quantum Mortis: The Actionless Comic
This book is not a good book. It is action-less, motionless, and for the most part, people-less. The book is divided into two chapters. The first chapter is mostly some guy named Tower flying around and talking to his computer until he lands the ship and talks to a green space monkey that spouts gibberish into a translating device.

Then chapter 2 starts and we still don’t have our second character for a few more pages. Tower pops a space Tic Tac and we get a pin-up entrance for Hildreth the civilian space detective.

Then both characters are seemingly attacked by word bubbles until their magic space technology identifies the body as an exiled royal from another planet. We get a nice splash page giving the history of the exiled royal’s family. Then the book ends.

It’s not fun. I didn’t learn anything. I don’t care what happens next. It’s bad. The whole 29 pages should be summarized in a page or two while giving us character development. Don’t spend money on this like I did.

On the other hand, Harry liked it a lot.

Great job craftmanship restored
This is a very well done animation of the book .the quantum mortis series is top notch story telling . I read them as fast as I could. The art while having a distinctly retro feel adds to the story without overwhelming it. Knowing what comes next in no way detracts from enjoying the artist’s perspective of the story because he is staying true to the heart of it. The illustrations of hildy and tower actually bring out the romantic understory without taking away from the plot. It is great to see craftsmanship restored to graphic novels. Very few English ones approach the Japanese masters. Letting the art add to the story instead of being pictures without purpose. Well done.

To put it in perspective, there is another first issue of a comic where virtually nothing happens, although for 40 pages instead of 28. A guy is in a cage. For decades. Nothing happens except for people actually falling asleep – now there is a fitting metaphor, right? There is no action except for an occult ceremony that doesn’t even involve a dead goat or a naked woman until the guy in the cage escapes off-camera, so we still haven’t seen anything happen until one of the guys who took part in the ceremony falls asleep and has a dream. The end.

How absolutely horrible, right? How action-less, motion-less, and literally people-less, as the guy in the cage was not a normal human being. Clearly no one ever bought or read or liked that particular comic, right?  Well, no, because that’s all that happens in the first issue of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman, which happens to be one of the most well-regarded comics series ever written.

Now, I wonder if there might be anything we can glean from these two extremely divergent reactions to the same comic. Why does SuperComicFunTime hate QM:AMD so much while Harry likes it so much? Perhaps their reviews of other products unrelated to Quantum Mortis might give us a clue. Here are a pair of five-star reviews for other products they liked. Guess which review was written by whom?

Review of Avengers #219: By Divine Right
This comic is AWESOME! I got it in a box of comics I opened about three weeks ago. OMG! I was so stoked when I saw Jim Shooter was the writer! Janet Van Dyne loses her clothes early on and soon, cosmic hijinks ensue.

Review of A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami
I immediately recognized the writer’s talent, the characterizations and plot integrate seamlessly and while the ending is surprising and a little bit disappointing the journey is absolutely worth the time. I can’t remember such good prose, and by a non-native English speaker. 

Different audiences, different tastes. SuperFunComic’s perspective isn’t wrong, it’s just different. I have no doubt that he would be as bored by Murakami as he was by QM-AMD #1. As far as I am concerned, the only relevant question is which market is more interesting to us as a publisher? And since the top-selling comic of 2016 was Big Trouble in Little China/Escape From New York which sold 421,625 units while Murakami’s books sell in the millions, well, I am confident that we are making the right choice.

The one-two punch

I have to admit, I never, ever, envisioned this kind of start for Arkhaven. Thanks to all of you who are making it happen.

What’s particularly interesting about this category is that it covers all the normal 24-page comics. So, not a bad harbinger for the coming print editions.

UPDATE: Not, I suspect, entirely unrelated, is the annual report from Diamond.

YEAR 2017 VS. YEAR 2016 (units)

COMICS -9.69{4bbad798630efc4433864d09618c79dc37ec93bd369a8697e8847adaf672eacc}
GRAPHIC NOVELS -11.86{4bbad798630efc4433864d09618c79dc37ec93bd369a8697e8847adaf672eacc}
TOTAL COMICS/GN -9.86{4bbad798630efc4433864d09618c79dc37ec93bd369a8697e8847adaf672eacc}
TOYS -19.90{4bbad798630efc4433864d09618c79dc37ec93bd369a8697e8847adaf672eacc}

People are obviously looking for something else. And we’re definitely offering something else.

RIGHT HO, JEEVES #1 now on preorder

A Binge at Brinkley is the first issue in the RIGHT HO, JEEVES series, which tells of the travails of the inimitable Bertie Wooster, who is summoned from the comforts of #3A Berkley Mansions, London to Brinkley Manor by his imperious Aunt Dahlia. Love is in the air and Wodehousian shenanigans are afoot, as Wooster is not the sole guest at the manor, which is also playing host to the fairy-gazing Madeline Basset as well as the famous newt-fancier Augustus Fink-Nottle.

Adapted from the classic Wodehouse novel by comics legend Chuck Dixon and drawn by SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN illustrator Gary Kwapisz, A Binge at Brinkley is issue #1 of 6 in the RIGHT HO, JEEVES series. 24 pages. $2.99.

Now available for preorder. RIGHT HO, JEEVES #1: A Binge at Brinkley will be released on January 29. The series is currently on schedule to release issues on a monthly basis. Please note that because Right Ho, Jeeves is only in the public domain in the United States, this comic is only available from Amazon.com for US customers. We have presently have an offer in to the Wodehouse estate to acquire the necessary permissions to produce comics and graphic novels for the works that are not in the public domain.

UPDATE: Very pleased to see there is genuine interest in this experiment.

  • #1 in Kindle Short Reads > 45 minutes (22-32 pages) > Comics & Graphic Novels
  • #1 in Books > Comics & Graphic Novels > Graphic Novels > Adaptations
  • #1 New Release in Books > Comics & Graphic Novels > Literary Graphic Novels
  • #1 in Kindle eBooks > Comics & Graphic Novels > Historical & Literary > Literary

Pretty sure it won’t be

Ethan Van Sciver’s fourth video and counting about QUANTUM MORTIS A Man Disrupted #1: By the Book and me. Which, by the way, is still the #2 New Release in Kindle Comics & Graphics, just behind Marvel’s Darth Vader #10. I have no idea what he’s going on about now, as I didn’t bother watching it. But perhaps it will prove entertaining if this sort of thing amuses you.

The good news is that due to the unexpected success of our first release, I can announce that BOTH of Arkhaven’s first two digital comics will be released on a monthly schedule for the foreseeable future. RIGHT HO, JEEVES #1: A Binge at Brinkley will be out later this month and QUANTUM MORTIS A Man Disrupted #2: Zero Zero Tango, will be out in February. The first print editions are still expected to appear in February.

We will also be making an announcement about a second comics imprint soon. And about the ability to preorder the following.

The Capn is absolutely right

I definitely care more about SJWs than comic books.

However, what Capn Cummings fails to realize is that I also believe in winning by being objectively superior to the competition, regardless of what they happen to be, and by thinking beyond the conventional assumptions. That’s why my band recorded four Billboard Top 40 Club Chart hits. That’s why my game development house went 6x platinum with our fourth game. That’s why Castalia House already publishes some of the best science fiction and fantasy in the genre, and why Arkhaven’s debut digital comic book was the #1 New Release on Kindle.

I don’t care about comic books. But I care deeply about Arkhaven becoming the very best publisher of the best-written, most popular comic books and graphic novels in the comics industry. I expect excellence from everyone involved in the project, including myself. Sure, we fall short. Sure, we have no clue what we’re doing yet. It took me 12 tries to get Kindle Comic Creator to simply kick out a working .mobi file without crashing first. I still don’t really understand what flatting is or why it is necessary.

So what? I don’t need to know. I certainly don’t need to care. I just need to stay out of the way of the experts with whom I’m surrounding myself, and to whom I’m handing over the responsibility to do it right. I’m not afraid to bring on better writers than me, to hire the very best artists and colorists we can find, and more importantly, to listen to the substantive criticism and seek to continuously improve.

If you compare the first print editions that Castalia published to the most recent ones, the differences are striking. Even though all the same people are involved, we have improved with almost every single book of the 60 we’ve produced so far. It’s an iterative process. And that means the comics we are now producing are almost certainly the very worst we will ever produce.

Let me give you an example. I watched a video review of QUANTUM MORTIS A Man Disrupted #1: By the Book yesterday. The reviewer made a good point about how we had no text-indicators of sound effects; in other words, no BIFF BANG BOOM! So, I talked to the artist right after I finished watching the video and now issue #2 will have them. On the other hand, the reviewer also made a point about the lack of action in the first issue, which made me laugh for reasons that anyone who has read the novel will understand. That’s a “problem” that doesn’t need to be addressed and will take care of itself as the story continues.

But as for those who wring their hands over politics, well, I couldn’t care less what they think. They obviously haven’t even bothered to look at anything we’ve done in the comic space so far, let alone read any of my novels. Yes, there will be politics in some of our comics, but because we are not SJWs, we are not afraid to present opposing perspectives fairly and use the conflict to generate interesting plots and storylines and characters. Can anyone honestly say that Captain Europa is an unfair representation of a certain perspective that I most certainly do not share?

It’s more disappointing than anything to see criticism this uninformed and insubstantial, not because it hurts anyone’s feelings, but because it is literally useless. However, it is a good sign, because it is an indicator that interest in what we are doing is beginning to grow. Of course, the insecure professionals will do their usual OMG LOL THIS IS SO TERRIBLE THING while we proceed to demonstrate the total irrelevance of their esoteric expertise.

This review is precisely why I pay no attention to the professionals in the comics industry. Their sales are plummeting. Their channels are dying. Their industry is hopelessly converged. Their stories are lightweight, superficial, and boring, and they can’t successfully develop any interesting new characters. They are clearly doing something wrong, and yet, their first reaction to a first effort that is not only doing something different, but is literally the #1 New Release on Amazon is to smugly denounce it as awful. The SF professionals reacted exactly the same way when they smugly denounced the awfulness of my “vanity publishing house” three years ago. It’s going to be amusing to watch Ethan’s videos on the subject one year from now… or rather, to observe when he abruptly falls silent just like File 770 and the SF-SJWs have.

I’m not at all upset by Ethan’s honest, fair, and very negative review of QMAMD #1. Quite to the contrary, I am extremely pleased by it. Here is why: it confirms is that what we are doing is taking a fundamentally different approach to comic book storytelling than the standard presently being utilized by the industry as a whole. That suggests that we will either fail completely or we will succeed well beyond anyone’s expectations. And the initial response to QMAMD #1 is a very early sign of the latter.

So, stick to drawing, Ethan, and leave the storytelling to the real writers instead of the cheap wannabes in your industry. I can tell that you know nothing about how to tell an absorbing story that will hold a reader’s interest over time. The fact that you genuinely think nothing happened in Issue #1 and can’t understand the significance of the history page simply demonstrates the extreme superficiality of your perspective. I note that you are confusing the utilization of action to grab the short-lived attention of the attention-deficit-disordered reader with genuine storytelling. The two are not synonymous; only the inferior storyteller needs to rely on cheap pyrotechnics to hold his reader’s attention. In my opinion, that stupid “show don’t tell” philosophy is part of why comics are dying.

I was particularly amused by the idea expressed by some of his commenters that Quantum Mortis is some sort of Bladerunner ripoff. It’s not. It can’t be. I’ve never seen any of the Bladerunner movies and the books have literally nothing in common with the PKD novel on which the movies were based. FFS, anyone who knows anything about me knows that Quantum Mortis is Traveller.

UPDATE: I thought this comment was particularly amusing: “Part of the problem is that he seems to have approached it like a print writer doing the prologue for a book rather than a superhero comic book writer doing a first issue.”

What planet do you have to be orbiting to conclude that the graphic novelization of a military science fiction mystery should be more like a superhero comic book? I am genuinely curious to discover on what lunatic grounds these critics are going to attack our first Wodehouse issue.

Introducing Arkhaven

Arkhaven is the new Castalia House imprint which will be responsible for publishing comics and graphic novel series like Alt★Hero, Alt★Hero Avalon, QUANTUM MORTIS, and Wodehouse, among others. It will be publishing in both digital and print editions, and we’re pleased to announce that the first Arkhaven digital comic is now available today.

QUANTUM MORTIS A Man Disrupted #1: “By the Book”

Chief Warrant Officer Graven Tower is a ruggedly handsome military policeman who hates aliens. Fortunately, as a member of His Grace’s Military Crimes Investigation Division – Xenocriminology and Alien Relations, he gets to arrest a lot of them. Sometimes he even gets to shoot them.

But while he doesn’t like aliens, Chief Tower does very much like Detector Derin Hildreth of the Trans Paradis Police Department, who is unmistakably human. So when Tower has the chance to investigate the mysterious murder of an alien on the streets of Trans Paradis with her, he’s not about to miss the opportunity. Especially when their mutual investigation just might give him the excuse to shoot an alien or three.

Issue #1 is 28 pages, retails for $2.99 at Amazon, and is available on Kindle Unlimited. If you want to check out the interior artwork, click inside and you can see the first few pages. The style is very retro Dick Tracy, which is decidedly out-of-fashion today, but then, it also lacks transgendered minority deviants, disturbing and inappropriate portrayals of children, and endless social justice advocacy. We did say we were going old school, you may recall.

UPDATE: Thank you all for the enthusiastic support!

  • #1 in Kindle Short Reads > 45 minutes (22-32 pages) > Comics & Graphic Novels
  • #1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Comics & Graphic Novels > Military
  • #1 New Release in Kindle eBooks > Comics & Graphic Novels
  • #12 in Comics & Graphic Novels

The first 24-page print edition will be available in February and we’re planning to have Issue #2 out in digital then as well. Since we’re new to producing comics, we’re using the QM series as a point man of sorts in order to avoid making any serious mistakes with Alt★Hero production. But no worries, we are still on track to have three of the first A★H digital editions out to the backers in February.

We also have a new line of Arkhaven t-shirts available at Crypto.Fashion, including both first official Alt★Hero Captain Europa t-shirt and the first official Alt★Hero Rebel t-shirt. Posters and more will be available there soon.