KOLCHAK: THE NIGHT STALKER FILES Solicited

Moonstone Books has solicited the first issue of the new ongoing Kolchak: the Night Stalker Files comic book series for October, 2010. Here’s the official solicitation copy:

KOLCHAK: The Night Stalker Files #1

Story: Christopher Mills,
Art: Jaime Martinez
Covers: Woodrow Hinton III, Mark Maddox
32pgs, color, $3.50

NEW ONGOING SERIES!

Night stalking reporter Carl Kolchak doesn’t have time for horror movies. His life is scary enough – and now he’s between jobs and desperate for a paycheck. But when a young actress goes missing on the set of a low-budget monster flick, he soon discovers that making it big in Hollywood can be murder!

I only just saw this amazing cover art by Mark Maddox this evening, and I think it’s beautiful. (I designed the logo, BTW.) Moonstone’s also offering a very cool alternate cover by Woodrow Hinton III, as well, but I’m really not quite sure what it has to do with the story I wrote. I do like the art, though.

In any case, I’ve been working really hard the last few weeks to try and stay ahead on the scripts (it took forever to write the first couple issues) so that Moonstone will be able to keep the book on schedule. I haven’t written an ongoing title since Leonard Nimoy’s Primortals back in the mid-90s, so getting back into the groove of a regular comics gig has taken a while.

I love writing Kolchak, but it’s an extremely challenging assignment and takes a lot more out of me than writing two-fisted, gun-blazing action-adventure stuff like Captain Midnight.

First, I have to come up with supernatural situations that are at least somewhat fresh (it’s tough finding monsters that the character hasn’t already run up against), and then I have to figure out how Carl is going to deal with them in the pages allotted. That takes me an absurdly long time (each Night Stalker Files script I’ve done so far I had to scrap halfway through and start over again), and then, trying to capture Carl’s distinctive “voice” is also time-consuming. I try to write Kolchak’s dialogue and narration in such a way that the reader can almost hear Darren McGavin speaking. I don’t know how successful I am, but that’s the goal.

The Powers That Be at Moonstone have been very patient with me – they’re great guys – and I really don’t want to let them down. I need to find a way to speed up my process; hopefully, it will get easier as I get more issues under my belt.

Look for the first issue around Halloween.

New Books in the Mail

Received a package today with my comp copies of the Captain Midnight Chronicles hardcover and paperback, as well as a few copies of the recently-released Kolchak Tales: Monsters Among Us trade paperback collection, which contains the Night Stalker of the Living Dead miniseries I wrote a couple of years ago. It’s nice to see Tim Hamilton’s art and Ian Sokolowiski’s colors the way they were supposed to look – the TPB is printed on much nicer paper stock than the miniseries was.

The Chronicles looks pretty good, too, although Richard Clark’s gorgeous cover painting printed a bit too dark.  It’s a shame, because overall, the book looks quite decent. I’m told that Captain Midnight Chronicles hit the shelves yesterday at comic shops around the country.

It’s always nice to get printed books that I worked on in the mail. It reassures me that I do, indeed, exist.

CAPTAIN MIDNIGHT CHRONICLES Now Available

After several years, the long-awaited Captain Midnight Chronicles short story collection is – according to the publisher – back from the printer and now available to purchase.

Edited by yours truly, and based on my reimagined version of the character – which incorporates the best features of the radio, film, comic book and television incarnations of the character – the book features some thrilling adventure stories by a stellar line-up of talent under an explosive cover painting by my pal and Captain Midnight co-conspirator, Richard Clark.

Here’s the contents of the volume: “Countdown to Midnight” By Christopher Mills, “Captain Midnight at Ultima Thule” By Win Scott Eckert, “The Black Dragon” By Mark Justice, “Shipwreck In The Sky” By Robert T. Jeschonek, “Death Master of The Secret Island” By Trina Robbins, “Wind & Rain” By Tim Lasiuta, “Cushy Job” By P.C. Hamerlinck, “Captain Midnight Meets Airboy” By Chuck Dixon, “Fantastic Island” By Robert Greenberger, “The Dark of Midnight” By Stephen Mertz, “Witch of The Waning Moon” By Howard Hopkins, and “A Mission In Time” By James J. Nance. The hardcover version includes a brief introduction to the character by P.C. Hamerlinck and an additional short story by yours truly, “The Mediterranean Intercept.”

Both versions of the book can be ordered now directly from the publisher, Moonstone Books, or through Amazon.

Hopefully, I’ll be getting my copies soon. I’m looking forward to finally holding it in my hands. Hopefully, it will sell well enough to allow for a second volume.

New GRAVEDIGGER Art

Here are three preview pages from the new Gravedigger comic story, “The Predators,” which will be included in the new graphic novel, Gravedigger: Hot Women, Cold Cash. The scans aren’t great – and I had to piece them together in Photoshop, so the tones aren’t quite matching up – but it’ll give you an idea of how the story’s going to look.

The art is fully rendered in gray markers by artist Rick Burchett. I love it! It looks like something out of an old Warren or Marvel B&W magazine; in specific, it reminds me of the B&W work of the great Russ Heath.

Anyway, we’re closing in on it, and I still hope to have it completed and turned in to Ape Entertainment sometime in the next month or so. I know it’s been a very long time coming, and I hope folks ultimately decide it was worth the wait.