April 3, 2008

Clockwork Comic

Okay, so after Wizardworld Chicago I was totally going to post some links to some of the cool people I met at the show last year.

That was almost a year ago. And I totally didn't do it.

Yeah, I know, BAD Ben.

Anyway, one of those people . . . well, two of those people . . . were Jane Irwin and Paul Sizer.

I met Jane at my first convention as a creator, up at the Motor City Comic Con in Novi, MI. Jane was probably the first comic creator I met, in person, who was actually doing some of the things I wanted to do. It was cool to talk to her. She pointed me in the direction of some other cool people at that convention.

Jane's comic was Vogelein.

It's a charming story about a clockwork fairy trying to make her way in the modern world. She needs to have her clockworks wound every day, which leads to some tense situations, especially when, as the story opens, her current "helper" has died of old age. All in all, it is an amazingly told story. I cannot recommend it highly enough. (If you go to her website, you can look at the free previews: http://www.vogelein.com/vogelein/index.shtml)

Jane's husband, Paul Sizer, is the creator, it turns out, of a comic I had enjoyed years ago when I first got back into reading comics. Little White Mouse is the story of a girl who gets stranded on a mining station in the far reaches of space. I liked the story and always felt bad that that poor girl was trapped there. However, while for me the story ended there, that wasn't the end of the story. This year at Wizardworld I picked up the graphic novel, which contained teh complete adventures of Little White Mouse. It's a cool little story, and it goes in all sorts of directions you would never expect. Again, highly recommended.


I recently found out that the third Vogelein book had been delayed. This was a huge disappointment to me. Now, the first two books are fairly self-contained, so it's not like I was waiting for the resolution to the cliffhanger of the end of the LOST or BATTLESTAR GALACTICA season. I just liked the characters and their world and looked forward to returning.

But all is not lost. It turns out she's been working on another project. One of those projects that really excite me. One of those projects where you find something historically interesting and just can't help writing a story about it! (This happened with me with the story of David Bushnell's Turtle submarine in TimeFlyz book 2, a story I'd been wanting to tell for years before I got the chance.)

It's called Clockwork Game: the Illustrious Career of a Chess-playing Automaton. It's the true story of the Turk, which made tours around the world as a clockwork chess playing, well, robot. It captured the imagination of the world as people were amazed by this MACHINE that could PLAY CHESS!!!

Check it out. She updates the project every Thursday with a new page. The story begins here.

~ Ben

The Vogelein covers and Clockwork Game art is copyright Jane Irwin. The Little White Mouse cover is copyright Paul Sizer.

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