Zuda Work in Progress…

After creating this blog, I haven’t been able to get back to it for some time… I’m working on a ‘Zuda’ entry at the moment. If you don’t know what that is, go to http://zudacomics.com/.
I’m not good with explanations. Just see my Drag Me To Hell Review for an example( I basically didn’t like that one’s ending – I thought it was a predictable copout after a decent effort. I don’t know if that ever comes up/across in my review though. Anyway…).
In the current Zuda competition I voted for ‘Sideways’, an all ages ‘steampunk’ story featuring a team called: (wait for it)…. Steampunks.
It seemed like most complete entry of the group story and art wise. I voted after reading all of the entries the first day that they were ‘released’ on the web. Since then I have heard the writer of Sidewise on internet radio. He seemed like a decent guy, was a vet and is gearing the story towards kids (comics for kids… There’s an idea). Don’t mind voting for decent folks….

Promo wallpaper for Sideways.

Promo wallpaper for Sideways.

There was an entry by a foreign artist who, if he had gotten a proper translator, probably would win fairly easily based on the art alone; but as it is he has so many grammatical errors and translation problems that it just kills it….

Great art, but.....

Great art, but.....

Actually there was another with great ‘manga’ art: Kogoshi, but I just had a problem with the ‘cliffhanger’. It’s what I hope NOT to do with my own entry, that is, forcing the ‘hook’ where it doesn’t fit. I think that one would have worked better if the guy and girl were being forced to marry someone else and they run off together or if they had been rivals before they were being forced to marry would have made so much more sense to me and I probably would have voted for it. You be the judge….


But no matter how good an entry is, someone with a great ad campaign (or a lot of friends and supporters) can win without having the ‘best’ entry. I would say that would be MY only hope of winning, but I don’t have a lot of friends and supporters. Oh, well.

I’ve been away from this blog for a while for different reasons; but the main reason being the Zuda thing. I started a few weeks ago trying to come up with a story. This mainly consisted of thinking of possible ideas for a Zuda story while standing in line at Food World or Wally-World. I had many, many ideas that I shot down fairly quickly. I had a couple that lasted an entire night but were thrown out upon waking the next morning after realizing the story wouldn’t work for some reason or another. A lot of the things that I came up with seemed too similar to a lot of things done before after I looked at them as  ‘high concepts’ and were buried pretty quickly….

Then an idea popped in my head that might work (emphasis on might) for an entry. It was not anything that was completely new, but I figure anything that I do will be drastically different from what anyone else is doing simply because I tend to sink and swim on my own without any input from other artists/writers…I’m isolated creatively I guess.

So I started writing a rough outline for a basic plot… and character motivations… and  story tone… and theme… and art style … and research… and how characters will look… and how they dress…. and writing dialogue without having inordinant  amounts of exposition crammed into the 8 pages to try to show where the story is going in 8 pages… and  (AAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Coronary.)…..

All this for an 8 page contest entry that will be rejected anyway. Why I worry about it so much for other than just  ‘trying to give my best effort’ as a reason,  I don’t know.  But I suppose I won’t let my own negativity stop me from trying. I’ve entered things like this before in hopes of getting published. Here’s part of one such thing.
Contest 2
 A few years removed, I can see the glaring weaknesses in it.I feel like I’ve gotten a little better since then. The winner of that contest was Hero By Night by DJ Coffman (who was deserving enough)and is seen below. I think he’s still doing this series, but I could be wrong.

Hero By Night

Hero By Night

The runner up in that contest is the one that I will never live down having lost to… I can only sleep at night knowing that with the number of entries that were submitted there was no possible way that they would have actually been able to look at everything that was submitted. That was a few years ago. Hopefully my Zuda experience will be better.


I’m still in the early stages but hope to have the 8 pages done by the end of the month (writing, pencils, inks, lettering and coloring). The big obstacle for me is how to fit a ‘chapter’ of the story into 8 pages and to do it so that it sets up the basis of the story. And knowing that if the editors shoot me down or if I was lucky enough to get picked and didn’t win, then the story that I have in my head will probably remain there. It’s definitely a  long shot.

I tend to work extremely rough, especially when I don’t have to have anything approved by a client. I’m just making myself happy. Here is a really rough sliver of a panel that I roughed out on paper for the fourth Zuda screen that I am working on. It’s a scary beastie that I worked in just because I love drawing creepy monsters with bad complexions. Hopefully the Zuda editors will like it when I’m finished with it enough so that I get picked for competition. I think I would have to fight the ‘just happy to be here’ feeling from that point….. I’ll post some some pencil slivers also, but that’ll be a few days from now probably since I’m still researching some things….


Original art taken down to comply with Zuda contest rules...



And I was going to try to not be petty, but I just can’t help myself… Here is the runner up to Hero By Night in that contest. I didn’t even make it into the top 50 along with thousands of other hopefuls. And yes, I remain bitter all of these years later.

This beat out THOUSANDS of other entries. I bet this person has a job in Hollywood now.

This beat out THOUSANDS of other entries. I bet this person has a job in Hollywood now.



That’s all I have for now. It’s after midnight so I better get back to work, before it gets too late.


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