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Some updates and links for you...

All right, a lot has happened in the last few weeks, although most of our lives still feel basically the same - still staying at home and trying to recall the before-time. I've been getting a lot of writing done, more than usual, and more reading done, which is very relaxing. I've pretty much run out of new TV shows to marathon, other than a few that look good but a bit too down and depressing to check out right now.

But luckily my to-read pile is pretty big at this point, so I'm taking this as a sign to escape into some escapism.

Speaking of escapism, that painting above is the new cover for CRIMINAL The Deluxe Edition Vol 1. We have new editions of Vol 1 and 2 (both long out of print) and a new Vol 3 coming before the end of the year. I love all the new covers Sean did for these books so much. So I thought I'd show you how the one for Vol 3 came together. This is what it's like to get a cover sketch from Sean...

Ignore the text on the back cover, that's just temp text for placement. A few days after he sent me that, this arrived... the early stages of the full painting...
You can see that a few elements are finished, but much of it is still in-progress, just roughed in.

Another day or two later, and I get the final version...
Which is incredibly detailed and beautiful. And Sean always designs and illustrates our covers with the text and logos in mind, which is why the wraparound and temp text is there.

Anyway, all three volumes will be out the same month later this year, so keep your eyes peeled and let your comics shop or book store know if you want copies.
Since my last newsletter, the comics industry has started to come back to life. Diamond, our distributor, is slowly starting to ship new comics to shops, which are in most places at least being allowed to do curbside pick-up to customers. It's more work for everyone, but hopefully between that and mail-order, a lot of comics shops will be able to survive this pandemic. Again, I'd urge you all to make some orders from your local comic shop. If there's some graphic novel you always meant to read - why not finally give BUILDING STORIES a try? You've heard the hype for a decade - the industry has never needed its readers more. if there's one thing we get out of this in the end, I hope it's a renewed appreciation for local small businesses and the sense of community they give us. 

So, since the market has started back up, we have some news on PULP -- instead of the last Weds of May, it will now be published the last Weds of July. Hardback books take longer to process at the printer and distributor, so it's a longer gap than I hoped... but it gives you added time to order a copy from your retailer. We're doing signed bookplates for shops that order a certain amount of copies upfront, so if you order the book through your shop, you could be helping them qualify for those book plates.

I'm obviously biased, but I think PULP is one of the best things we've ever done, and I want to be sure all our readers are able to get copies the week it hits. Our last original hardback, MY HEROES HAVE ALWAYS BEEN JUNKIES sold out all over the place the first few weeks, which is why I encourage special ordering from your retailer, or if you don't have one, preordering online. We worked very hard on this book before the shutdown hit, so I'm very excited for people to finally see it.

And I'll have an announcement about what's coming next from me and Sean in the next newsletter. We're hard at work now, though, on something brand new, as of just a few weeks ago. I had another thing we were originally going to do, but then the pandemic hit and I got the urge to try to do something different instead... which is what we're doing. As you'll find out soon.

In other "what have we been working on" news... it was announced a while back that me and Sean were helping our old friend and editor Scott Dunbier with Darwyn Cooke's PARKER Martini Edition: Last Call.  This is the companion to the first Martini Edition, which collected The Hunter and The Outfit, and lots of extras. This one collects the last two books Darwyn did - The Score and Slayground, and hopefully lots of great extras.

As an added bonus for the book, Sean and I did a brand new story as a tribute to Darwyn and Donald Westlake. It was both an honor and terrifying to be given permission by Abby Westlake to write an original story in the PARKER world - which I'm not sure anyone else has ever done. I'm really grateful that Scott and Marsha let us be a part of this book, and to get to pay tribute to Darwyn, who I feel like I owe so much of my career to.

Anyway, to tease you, here's the first page:
The book is due out in the fall, but that might be up in the air. Call your comics shop to tell them you want a copy or order it online if you don't have a shop nearby.
Marcos and I did a fair amount of press for FRIDAY, and here are links to some of it:

Here's me probably going off-topic a lot on the SKTCHD podcast.

Here's us both being interviewed, and some behind the scenes art for the comic.

Here's me DEFINITELY going off-topic on Word Balloon.

Here's an article about the book at Boing Boing.

Here's an interview with a great pull quote headline.

And here's Alex Segura interviewing me about the book at Crimereads.

If you haven't checked out FRIDAY yet, please go give it a look at Panel Syndicate.

Here's one of my favorite pages from Chapter One...
And here's part of a layout page Marcos sent me, so you can see the title of Chapter Two...

In the other people's news department, we're starting to see more comics people doing digital comics and kickstarters and patreons to support their work. I encourage you all to support any of these efforts when you see them, assuming the creators and their work is up your alley.

In the last week, our own Jacob Phillips launched a digital comic on Patreon with writer Chris Condon. Go check it out, and buy a copy of what they're doing. I believe it's a regular comic with new chapters dropping every month. So go subscribe and check out what they're doing.

On Kickstarter in the past weeks, a few different comics projects have hit, notably this one from Jeff Lemire, Matt Kindt, and David Rubin. They're advance-selling copies of a deluxe original hardback, basically, and it looks really good. Also looks like a really smart way to finance a larger printrun beyond the Kickstarter edition.


And on Panel Syndicate again, BAD KARMA has dropped, from Alex de Campi, Ryan Howe and Dee Cunniffe. This is another serialized comic, published on the pay-what-you-want model, just like FRIDAY, so please go check it out and give them your support.

And just one amazing crime story this time...

Whoever did this, please contact my agents so I can make this into a movie.

Okay, that's all for this time out. I'll be back with another of these next month, with more news and art.

In the meantime, send questions for future newsletters to: and be safe and smart out there.
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