Zubby Newsletter #27: Sprinting to Slow Down

Cascading deadlines, teaching, and conventions. It’s a whole lot right now. Stacy warned me I shouldn’t “fill every box on the calendar like Tetris” and, surprising no one, she was right.

I got back from Edmonton after midnight on Sunday and I’m feeling pretty tired after a day of email catch-up and administrative everything. The To-Do List will get done bit by bit, just like it always does, but this current pace, as fun as it can be at times, is also not sustainable. I definitely need to calm things down a bit in the months ahead.

How About a Turtle?

Kind little old lady at the Edmonton Expo –

“I don’t read any of these action books, but I do collect things with turtles on them. Will you draw a turtle for me?”


Steel Souls

Major Spoilers has preview pages up for CONAN THE BARBARIAN #3, in stores Wednesday, September 27th.

I received my print comps late last week and it’s another stunner. The team is absolutely roaring at this point. No other way to put it. In this issue – Our big villain is revealed and souls are stirred. Can’t wait for all of you to see it.

The Conan fandom has been coming out in force to my convention appearances since the launch and it’s been incredible to meet them in person and talk about how much these stories and this world means to them. Their excitement reminds me why we’re working so hard.

The solicits and covers for CONAN THE BARBARIAN #6 were also released last week. Jaw dropping cover art from Jae Lee, Pat Zircher, Dan Panosian, and Joey Spiotto.

Doug Braithwaite is drawing our second story arc, a tragic and brutal caper that takes place after the classic Robert E. Howard tale Queen of the Black Coast, and he’s delivering career-defining pages of stirring emotion and gut-wrenching violence. The 4-part story is called Thrice Marked For Death and, if I may be so bold, you are not prepared for what gets unleashed here.

Rob De La Torre has already begun work on pages for our third story arc (title still under wraps for now), so my inbox is an endless parade of the best damn sword & sorcery art I could imagine. It’s humbling to have these two titans drawing stories I’ve written and then have colorists like José Villarrubia, Dean White, and Diego Rodriguez enhance every panel before the legendary Richard Starkings pulls it all together with the best lettering in the business. What a dream.

What Was I Made For?

I finally had a chance to watch Barbie. Stacy saw it in theaters, but with my crazy summer schedule I missed out until the recent digital release.

I was impressed. Every time I thought the film was going to tip into being too much – too corny, too preachy, too self congratulatory – it managed keep things moving instead of getting bogged down. It’s peppy and ridiculous right up until it’s not and the ending was more poignant than I expected.

I can see why Barbie conquered the box office this summer, but it’s also mind-boggling to me that Mattel or WB think they’re going to franchise build from here. If they think they can reproduce that success with sequels or other toy brands in their empire, I think they’ll be sorely disappointed. It feels like a film that should just be, not the beginning of a Mattel-verse of films or whatever.

Or maybe I’m wrong and the Hot Wheels movie will deftly critique car pollution and racing culture while Polly Pocket encourages us to embrace a future of tiny houses off the grid. 😉

Links and Other Things

Okay, that should cover it this time. Have a great week!

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