Unit 44: Review Roundup #1

Below you’ll find some links from the past week that Unit 44 #1 has been on digital shelves.

(Have you read it yet? Check it out on ComiXology for just $1.99 from Alterna Comics!)

A huge thank you goes out to the following reviewers not for just reading the silly comic by me and artist Eduardo Jimenez, but also for taking the time to write about it. And yes, that even goes for the reviewers who didn’t totally love what we were doing. We still love them.

Click the links below to check out the full reviews!

“The comic is definitely a fresh of breath air from the dark dystopian comics we see today or the never-ending crossover events involving iconic superheroes. Anyone can just pick up a copy of Unit 44 after a long, perhaps bad, day and get a feel good laugh.”
– Laura Hong, Reviewer @ CC2KOnline.com

“Unit 44 provides readers with a quick and entertaining read that will leave you laughing and begging for more.”
– Barbra Dillon, Managing Editor @ FanboyComics.net

“It does everything an introductory story should while still being inventive and interesting. Unit 44 is a really fun series well worth your attention.”
– Cody Ferrell, Editor @ ScreenGonzo.com

“As with any comedy, mood and timing is everything when delivering the punch line. Wes Locher and Eduardo Jimenez worked well together setting up those opportunities in Unit 44.”
– Review @ ComicCrusaders.com

“In Unit 44, Wes Locher and Eduardo Jimenez really try to put the comic into comic book.”
– Jarrod, Reviewer @ Project-Nerd.com

I also took some time to stop by the Vodka O’Clock podcast with host Amber Love. We spent an hour chatting Unit 44, comics, the industry and more. You can listen to that here.

The talented Leo Johnson, a writer at MultiversityComics.com, was kind enough to do an interview with me about Unit 44. Find out how that went here.

More to come! I can’t thank the folks above enough for giving Unit 44 a chance.

If you have a comic book to promote, I highly recommend getting in touch with these fine people.

Unit 44 launch trailer

Unit 44 #1 hit digital stands yesterday on the ComiXology platform!

If you somehow have yet to get the gist of the comic’s plot, here’s a friendly video trailer we made to help you out.

The first issue is available for just $1.99! Don’t miss out!

Unit 44 #1 arrives on ComiXology today!

The day has arrived!

Thanks to our publisher Alterna Comics, Unit 44 #1 is now available on the ComiXology platform for just $1.99!

(That’s 22 pages of fun for less than I spent on coffee yesterday.)

If you like laughing, you should totally check out this comic. If not for my funny words, then definitely for artist Eduardo Jimenez’s amazing art.

Come join the party. We’d love to have you.

Laughing

Unit 44 #1 hits ComiXology tomorrow!

Wow…time flies!

It seems like only a few months ago that I was having the initial idea that sparked my comedy comic book miniseries Unit 44.

It seems like only a few weeks ago that artist Eduardo Jimenez and I started working on the series after a successful Kickstarter campaign.

It seems like only a few days ago that Alterna Comics offered to publish our series.

It seems like only a few hours ago that I sent them the finalized pages for production.

And yet, here we are…the comic that started with a single laugh in 2012 based on an idea about Area 51, storage units and rednecks is now on the verge of a monthly release from March through June of 2015 through the ComiXology platform.

It’s been a real whirlwind and Ed and I are ripe with anticipation over finally being able to share our silly comic book with readers.

What’s more is that Comic Book Resources is offering a 7-page preview of the inaugural issue! Click here to check that out and don’t forget to pick up the digital comic tomorrow, March 25 on ComiXology for just $1.99. A small price tag for something Ed and I spent two years of our life on.

You know what? You’re going to love it.

…if you like to laugh.

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Interview: Vodka O’Clock Podcast 3

With my comedy comic book miniseries Unit 44 set to hit ComiXology this Wednesday, the press train has begun rattling down the tracks. My first stop on that crazy train? The Vodka O’Clock podcast to chat with my pal Amber Love, of course!

It was my third time on the show and what a homecoming it was.

We spent a fun Saturday morning chatting about the production process of Unit 44, talked about the plot, the characters, the art and many other nooks and crannies. Additionally we caught up on good comics, bad comics, television, breaking into the biz and lots of other fun stuff.

I really appreciate Amber being both a gracious host and someone who’s always been willing to talk about my projects and help get the word out. If you’ve never heard her podcast before, don’t just listen on my account! She’s spoken to many great indie comic writers, artists, letterers, publishers and more. Her archives are a who’s who of up-and-coming talent. If you can, consider supporting her on Patreon too and help keep the great content coming.

Click here to hear us chat for an hour. We’ll keep you company on your commute.

You can also subscribe to the Vodka O’Clock podcast from iTunes or Stitcher radio.

 

Unit 44 #1 arrives in one week!

The first issue of my sci-fi/comedy comic book Unit 44 will arrive on ComiXology in one week, on Wednesday, March 25.

As I type that sentence I feel like I’m hyperventilating.

While part of the feeling comes from excitement, part of it also comes from nerves. It’s nothing new. I always feel this way right before I unleash a new piece of art on the world.

Unit44_Issue1_CoverThis silly book about inept Area 51 employees who forget to pay the rent on a storage unit, leaving government secrets to be sold to a couple of rednecks at public auction? It’s important to me. I spent the past two years working with Eduardo Jimenez, an amazingly talented artist and friend, putting together a project that I love, adore and am so excited to share with the world.

So here we are, one week away from the inaugural issue hitting the digital shelves alongside thousands of other great indie comics, not to mention stiff competition from Marvel, DC, Image and countless other awesome publishers putting out high quality content. I can’t help but wonder…will anyone drop the $1.99 on a hilarious digital comic that I’ve been working on in some capacity since 2012? More importantly…if they buy it, will they actually read it? And even more important…if they do read it, will they like it? Will they tell a friend about it? Will that friend purchase their own copy of the comic and repeat the cycle?

See? There’s a lot on my noggin.

I’ve spent the past weeks reaching out to reviewers, both friends and strangers, trying to garner interest in the comic to help build buzz. Will those reviewers dig what Ed and I have put together? Will they feel compelled to write about it online? And if they do, will they trash it? Humor is so subjective…what if they don’t get it?

4It’s enough to drive a person crazy.

Having published graphic novels, comic book miniseries, shorts and books in the past, I know exactly how this pattern goes. This intensity, self-doubt and panic will continue to cloud my brain until Wednesday morning when the book is available for purchase on ComiXology. Yep, right up until the point that I can no longer do anything but sit back and watch what happens.

It’s at that time that I will suddenly be overtaken by a strange feeling of relief and confidence, remembering that more than reviews, more than internet chatter and more than the fact that our publisher Alterna Comics signed us because they believe in our book, it will hit me that I wrote this book for me. I created something that I wanted to read. I didn’t do it for anyone else, and in essence, it’s a complete success in its own right.

Ed and I created something that we wanted to see in the comic book marketplace and over the course of a year and some change, I was able to collaborate with an awesome human who doesn’t even live in the same country as me, building a great friendship and sharing laughs that transcended cultures, time zones and international borders. Between you me, and wallpaper…it was the most amount of fun I’ve ever had creating a comic.

Despite how Unit 44 does on the shelves as the issues are released in March, April, May and June, I’ll always be able to look back on the experience of creating it and remember it as the most amazing “summer camp” experience I’ve had to date.

Of course, this personal success won’t stop me from telling every single person I encounter about the comic. If people do buy, read, enjoy and spread the word on this series, then there’s always the potential Ed and I could create a sequel.

Oh, geez…I might start hyperventilating again.

So do me a solid…if you like to laugh (if you say you don’t, you’re a liar) consider grabbing Unit 44 #1 when it hits digital shelves on March 25. You’ll be in for a real treat. Want to see what we have in store? You can read the first 5 pages of the comic for free over at Unit44comic.com. Enjoy. And thanks.

 

Unit 44 #1 coming Wednesday, March 25

At long last, my sci-fi/comedy comic book UNIT 44, co-created with artist Eduardo Jimenez will debut on the ComiXology platform on Wednesday, March 25 courtesy of Alterna Comics!

U44_issue1_2

Our silly, irreverent four issue miniseries tells the story of what happens when inept Area 51 employees Agent Gibson and Agent Hatch forget to pay the rent on the facility’s off-site storage unit and the secret contents are sold to a pair of backwoods rednecks at public auction. After an alien invasion threatens planet Earth, the agents must recover an item from the locker if they hope to stop the extraterrestrial threat.

It’s a comic book designed for one purpose: for you to forget all of your cares in the world and laugh your butt off.

The road to Unit 44 began in late 2012 when I was watching an episode of Storage Wars (a show about people who making a living off purchasing unpaid storage units and selling the contents for a profit) and wondered what would happen if someone on the broadcast accidentally purchased a locker containing government secrets. From there, the story was born over the course of the subsequent months and I quickly wrote my first drafts of the scripts over the holidays.

In early 2013 I linked up with the talented and hilarious artist Eduardo Jimenez to bring the story to the comic book page. In fall of that year we successfully raised funds via Kickstarter to complete the first issue and got all kinds of great feedback from readers and industry pros. In 2014 we Kickstarted the remaining three issues and now the series is complete.

Along the way, we pitched the book to numerous publishers and while they liked it, the consensus was that a straight humor book could be a hard sell in the market. Having a publisher wasn’t a make or break for us as Ed and I were completely content to self-publish the book if needed. Ultimately, Peter Simeti, head of Alterna Comics (publisher of the New York Times bestselling zombie anthology FUBAR, and many other fine comics) got in touch to see what we’d decided to do with the book.

Unit44_Issue1_CoverAfter some conversations, it turned out that Alterna’s name and brand perfectly signified what Unit 44 was all about…it was an alternative to the mainstream comic. An utterly silly and pretty ridiculous alternative. In June of 2014 we decided to team up with Peter and Ed and I started fast-tracking the book to completion.

All completed issues of the series were turned over to Alterna earlier this week and we’re preparing for the first issue to drop in less than a month’s time.

Of course, that’s the story in a nutshell.

Though I’ve released hundreds of pages of comics over the past few years, Unit 44 is the project that I feel is the best possible representation of who I am as both a writer and a person. I hope that if you’ve enjoyed any of my past works you’ll give this a shot, too. It’s also Ed’s first miniseries project and he drew this series as though it was the last thing he’d ever draw. I can’t thank him for enough for translating the jokes to the page and adding in tons of fun and hilarious things to look at. Heck, Ed, being the trooper he is, even the drew the first issue of the series twice. That’s how much we believe in this title.

I can’t thank Ed and Peter enough for their hard work and support in bringing this comic to readers, and I can’t wait to see what happens with it.

Want to get a sneak peek at what you’re in for? I’m offering a free preview of the first 5 pages of issue #1 which you can read here or by clicking the cover image above.

I hope you enjoy…and remember…it’s okay to laugh.

Chambers comes to ComicsFix!

In the era of streaming services that allow media consumers to program their own reading, listening and viewing habits a la carte, the website ComicsFix.com is one of the first sites to lead the way in “all-you-can-eat” comics for the price of $8.99 a month.

In it’s mission to become the NetFlix of the comic book world, the site offers a huge backlist of great books (updating weekly) from larger publishers like Dynamite Entertainment, Valiant and tons of indie pubs including, but not limited to, Arcana Studio, Markosia Enterprises, Alterna Comics and more.

This week, one of my comics found its way to the ComicsFix platform and as of this writing, my 2013 crime-fiction graphic novel CHAMBERS, with art by Kristian Rossi and colors by Kefas Armando is live on the platform. If you have a subscription to the service, consider giving my book about crooked cops and bloody revenge a read and then be sure to get in touch and let me know what you thought! The book was published by Arcana Studio and I appreciate not only that the company is taking takes to expose its catalog to a wider audience, but that my book was chosen to be submitted.

ComicsFix_Chambers1

As a comic book creators, ComicsFix, along with other digital distribution methods helps to spread the word of comics that may not have made it onto store shelves or may have been lost in the monthly shuffle.

We live in a really cool age and it’s wonderful to see comic books reaching a wider audience with each passing year.

ComicsFix_Chambers2

Innovation Update #24

My free sci-fi web comic INNOVATION returns with another installment!

We’re closing loops and opening new ones as Chapter 15: Endeavor continues events set in motion with chapter 12 and even calls back to certain moments that happened way back in chapter 3. Just what is in that briefcase that keeps popping up? I think it’s time to answer that question!

Art for this 5-page short was provided by the talented Fludi Stohr, someone I’ve invited to return to the Innovation world as often as he’d like.

Give Endeavor a read by clicking here or on the image below.

Chap15

Future: Uncertain update #1

FutureU_Episode

I teased this project during my 2015 Year in Preview post, and I finally have some news to share!

My interactive narrative, Future: Uncertain, has been published by Pocket Gems Games.

In November 2014 I was hired by San Francisco game makers Pocket Gems to develop, create and write a serialized story for their Episode app. The platform “presents players with dozens of animated stories where their choices matter.” (Their words.)

Launched a year ago, the app (which is a free download on iOS and Android devices) serves as the new generation of Choose-Your-Own-Adventure stories where players can find a tale that suits their genre tastes, step inside its ever-evolving world and begin making choices as the protagonist. Users have already played more than 10 million chapters on the app and the demand for new stories reached a boiling point last year.

My fantasy/sci-fi/comedy/drama tale takes place on Dina’s 21st birthday, when everyone in the city receives a text message from their future selves…everyone except her.

To learn more about the platform, or to get the free app, head over to the Pocket Gems website or find it on the App Store/Google Play marketplace. Once you’ve downloaded Episode, you can click this link on your mobile device to go right to Future: Uncertain: http://episodeinteractive.com/s/5266911660081152

If you give it a look, I hope you have fun in the silly world I’ve created. The first three episodes are available to play with 10 more installments set to serialize over the coming weeks.

There are tons of stories available from many talented writers for all tastes. Let me assure you, Episode is the perfect way to kill a few minutes in the bathroom. Though, don’t be surprised if you stay in there longer than you intended!

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