Got the Miranda Mercury fever this week, as we continue our push to get the book back on the stands in the spring of 2010…
The story of our unfortunate hiatus has been well documented by me in the past, but for those just coming in, and for a newfound motivation I’ll reveal shortly, we’ll go once more from the top. The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury #295 launched in February 2008 to great reviews and positive buzz, but before #296 could be released, our publisher Archaia Studios Press entered a restructuring period, effectively putting all of their titles on indefinite hold. Obviously, this was a major setback, as all of us considered Miranda Mercury our creative proving ground for the year, and thought its initial run would go a long way towards convincing people that we could create some good comics. Hell, I think almost all of us were able to parlay just that first issue into additional gigs elsewhere, and that was far from our strongest effort.
So losing that platform stalled everything out, and was another unexpected blow to a project that has absorbed many since we started developing it in ’05. Several months later, the financials all settled out when a brand new company acquired ASP, leading to another brief delay as contracts and such were being discussed amongst all the various players. Around that time, we learned that we wouldn’t be able to retain our original colorist going forward, which led to us holding a talent search through Ambidextrous through Newsarama. A possibility that should’ve occurred to me much earlier than it did, but perhaps there was a good reason.
Floored by the number of entrants, and impressed at many of the samples we received, we quickly offered the job to someone we thought was both enthusiastic and highly professional, but it turned out he was neither. This ate away even more valuable time, when combined with my getting married, then moving into a new apartment, and Lee finding Chinese drywall in his home, prompting a highly unexpected move on his end, ultimately brings us to this very point. And I just typed all of that out because I don’t intend on mentioning most of it ever again. What you’ve just read is a thing of the past, and we’re going to do our best to move on from it, as we’ve done with most of the setbacks and obstacles Miranda Mercury has come up against.
So what’s going on with the book now, you ask? Check this out—
Yesterday (11/2), we got another four colored pages from the new new colorist, which means that #297 is about halfway done—an amazing feat to us considering the pencils have been done for over a year now, and the inks shortly after that. Finally seeing the pages in full color has made the entire story feel new again, though after reading through the script (which is over two years old), I’ll definitely be cleaning up a ton of dialogue and captioning at the lettering stage—a little too much ’07 and not enough ’10, if you know what you mean. But we are extremely excited about his work thus far, which is getting better with every page, as he gets a clearer handle on exactly how the characters and the world are supposed to look. Probably another month or so before we reveal his identity, along with some of his pages, but we already know which ones we’ll be hitting you with.
Meanwhile, Lee has wrapped up the Snake Eyes mini for IDW, and is moving onto his next Miranda script, which is a beast of a story that has more characters and backdrops than the first three issues combined. He’ll be cursing me the entire time he’s drawing it, but I have no doubts it’ll result in the best looking comic pages of his life. And before years’ end, I’ll be wrapping up the whole thing with a monstrous script weighing in around forty pages, presumably leaving me free to devote the next year to nothing but the promotion and marketing of the book.
Can’t say exactly what happens, but this is an oversized issue that features three independent, yet strangely interconnected stories, that form up to properly celebrate the 300th issue of Miranda Mercury. One story is the logical conclusion of the whole “Time Runs Out” theme driving this first story arc, and continues directly from the heartbreaking and emotionally wrenching cliffhanger of #299. One is issue #124, which just so happens to be the issue where the series was re-titled The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury in the first place, and features the first of many showdowns between Miranda and eternal nemesis Cyrus Vega. The last tells you what the book was called before it belonged to Miranda, and that’s all I’m saying about that one.
But all three of these stories tie together in interesting ways, while also tying into issues #295-299, so my first order of business was doing a very carefully plotted outline, so it won’t take as long to script, or melt my brain in the process. Which it probably will anyway, because it’s three interlocking stories that interlock with a bunch of other stuff that came before, and even some stuff that hasn’t. It’s already paid off though, because when I started the outline, all of the stories were going to be the exact same length, but while working out the finer details, it became clear that one of them deserves a little more space to work. Not to pick favorites, but it’s really the most important story of the bunch, and increasing its page count naturally forced me to rethink my approach to the two others. Bottom line, this story needs to be the emotional fulcrum of the piece, and will get completely scripted first. Then everything else will be constructed around its frame.
As always, more details when they are available, but I have been thinking of twittering some dialogue as I’m drafting things out, which knowing me, I’ll only rewrite later. Ah, what the hell, let’s give it a try at the end here and see what it turns into.
Thanks for stopping by and letting me get some things off my chest for the last time. Here’s the sneak preview…
“MIRANDA MERCURY. ALL MINE. FOREVER.”