Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Vatican Assassin REMASTERED Out FRIDAY and More Updates!

Hope you're having a great summer!

Got a couple of big announcements that I wanted to share with you...

First: VATICAN ASSASSIN - REMASTERED

This Friday, July 31st, I'm releasing a new, remastered edition of my FREE Vatican Assassin Audiobook, offered FREE through Podiobooks.com!

Why a remastered version? Well...

Back in September of 2006, I began podcasting "Vatican Assassin" as part of my "Glow-in-the-Dark Radio" Podcast. Learning about digital audio and podcasting as I went along, the recordings were good, but in retrospect could have been better. In a misguided attempt at "tightening" the audio was also severely edited throughout the book. These recordings turned into "Vatican Assassin" on Podiobooks in 2007, and they've been downloaded over 106,000 times now. But when I finished the third book in my trilogy "Vatican Abdicator" earlier this year, and as I began to go through my files for upcoming downloadable audiobooks coming from Podiobooks (more info on that later), it became clear I'd learned a lot in the intervening three years since I'd recorded "Vatican Assassin" - it was time for a new edition!

I rerecorded the first ten chapters of the book - coming from a radio advertising background where you try to fit as much as you can into 30 seconds, my early reads were just too fast. The rest of the reads were fine, but the editing reflected my commercial background as well, there was no breathing room, no spaces! So I went back to the original source files for the rest of the book and re-edited them, restoring and/or adding "breathing room" to the reads. My noise reduction techniques have also improved over the years, so the entire book has been redone with improved (less harsh, more accurate) noise reduction as well.

If you haven't read or listened to Vatican Assassin, it's a science fiction adventure set in 2109. Bernard Campion (aka “BC”) is an assassin for the Pope of the New catholic Church – he struggles with his work's inherent contradictions while trying to take care of “business” during an out of control interplanetary religious war!

“Vatican Assassin” is available as a free downloadable audiobook through Podiobooks.com. What is a Podiobook? As described on the Podiobooks.com website, “The term podiobook was coined by (site co-founder) Evo Terra to describe serialized audiobooks which are distributed via RSS, much like a podcast. Listeners to Podiobooks.com can choose to receive the episodes of their books via an RSS feed or by listening to episodes by directly downloading episodes from this site. Some listeners keep the audio files on their computers, some transfer the book to CD, but most transfer the file on to their MP3 player so they can listen no matter where they are.” Podiobooks.com will soon be offering their audiobooks in traditional downloadable forms as well.

One other note: The Vatican Assassin Trilogy is now available in ebook form at Smashwords.com – choose your own price, or get the books FREE!

Second: “INTRODUCING... RED HOT!” PREVIEW ISSUE OUT NOW!

My adventures in comic book creation continue, as Glow-in-the-Dark Radio Comics proudly presents “Introducing... RED HOT!” in a special eight page preview issue. I've written a three issue miniseries that details the rise of young RED HOT, a new super powered hero for a new time! Artist and letterer Rhys ap Gwyn provides the stunning visuals – Rhys is quite a find as an artist, as you'll see if you head on over to the FREE webcomic at http://www.drunkduck.com/introducing_red_hot. We're posting a page or two each week through August as we unveil this special eight page preview issue. We also have the issue for sale for $1.99 through Indy Planet. If you'd like to get your own copy, you can pick one up here: http://www.indyplanet.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=2464 Why put out an eight page preview? While we can publish the series ourselves through Glow-in-the-Dark Radio Comics, Rhys and I are hoping we can get a larger publisher to pick up the book to give us better visibility and distribution. We'll use this preview issue as a pitch to shop the project around and see what happens. Interested publishers can contact me at mike.luoma@gmail.com. Thought I'd throw that in in case you know anyone who might be an interested publisher, heh.

Third: DOODLERAMA: A Doodle A Day By Mike Luoma

Also over at Drunk Duck, you'll find my new “webcomic” Doodlerama. Not a sequential comic, Doodlerama is instead a Doodle-A-Day – every weekday you get a new doodle from out of my sketchbooks. Head on over to http://www.drunkduck.com/Doodlerama/ for today's doodle, and hit the back key to check out any of the past doodles posted.

Fourth: ALIBI JONES!

I'm heading into the home stretch with my fourth and latest novel Alibi Jones. The title character, Alibi, is the son of BC, so the new book is a sequel of sorts to the Vatican Assassin Trilogy. It's twenty-three years later and Alibi Jones works as a mediator for the Solar Alliance Interplanetary Forces Mediation Service – the successor to BC's “Office of Papal Operations”, the OPO. If you enjoyed the trilogy, I think you'll get into this new one – I'm getting some great feedback from my advance readers! I'm waiting on the return of those advance copies. Once I get them back in my hands, there will be maybe one more rewrite and then the book will be on its way to you. I'm hoping to get the actual book out and to start offering the audiobook through Podiobooks.com this fall.

MORE!

There are a couple of other projects in the works. I'm collaborating once again with Juan Carlos Quattordio, the artist on Panthea Obscura, on an entirely different project. Everybody Lies is a comic book for adults, a drama about the lies people tell every day – except this time the lies spiral out of control for our lead characters. Juan Carlos is illustrating this one in black and white, and is working out some new ideas in his artwork that make the book pretty darn compelling. Can't wait to show you more as we get closer to publication!

I'm working with artist Scott Bradley on another unusual comic book project. “STRIKE OUT!” is a three issue Romantic Comedy about a washed out minor league ballplayer – Grizzly Yakamoto – trying to get his life together after a knee injury knocks him out of the game. Still in its early stages, this comic book slice-of-life series should be a breath of fresh air for the comic book industry. It's a different use of the graphic medium than the usual capes and tights. Scott tells me it feels similar to Terry Moore's Strangers In Paradise, but I must confess I haven't read that series.

I'm also working with a third artist on my Horror project, The Gnostic. This project is weird – the first two artists both ended up suffering (hopefully unrelated) mental breakdowns while working on the project. The third artist started working on pages only to have a pinched nerve curtail his drawing for weeks. There may be actual supernatural forces conspiring to keep this one from ever seeing the light of day! Crazy. But hopefully I'll have something more to tell you about it next time around.

That's it for this time – more than enough, really! Hope you'll have a chance to check out VATICAN ASSASSIN – REMASTERED when it comes out this Friday. Be sure to stop over to Drunk Duck to take a look at RED HOT! And DOODLERAMA, too. And I'd love to hear from you! Please email back and let me know what you think.

Happy Summer!

Mike