Archive for the News Category
Portsmouth Comic Con held its inaugural event over the bank holiday weekend at the Portsmouth Guildhall, and Blue Fox Comics had a table there.
There’s always a reason to be slightly wary for a first con, but Portsmouth Comic Con have been great at getting the marketing far and wide, and I’d heard a rumour they’d sold 4000+ tickets prior to it opening.
Another great plus point in its favour (for us, anyway!) was the location. Portsmouth is 30 mins away by train or car, so there was no need to travel up the night before, or at some terrible hour of the morning. We just arrived around 8.30am with our cases, got our wristbands and were shown to our table.
In fact, the whole set-up process was very smooth.
As for any show in a similar style building, there were several rooms, which made it feel a little fragmented. We were housed in Comic City 2, which felt like a good room to be in for comic creators. Most of the tables were creators, so people knew what to expect when they walked in.
Some of the other rooms seemed more random, with one of them not housing any comic creators at all, which was a shame.
The guests artists alley was in the main hall, on the stage. I wasn’t there in rush hours, but the times I did visit it, it was very accessible, with a good range of comic guests for the size of con. I also got to chat with Alison Sampson, which is always fun.
Saturday was the busiest day. The weather was blisteringly hot, but it didn’t put people off coming inside (and perhaps it helped). We had a good trading day, with Gone and Hexes graphic novels being our best sellers.
Sunday was slightly slower, as it always is, but we still had good sales.
The Guildhall was in a good location, with easy access to cafes and smaller supermarkets for reasonably priced food.
As first cons go, Portsmouth Comic Con went very well. There was a lot going on, and it felt well organised. Hopefully they’ll snag a few more independent comic creators for next year.
As for Blue Fox Comics, we’ll definitely be after a table in 2019!
I’m Simon Birks, co-founder and chief writer of Blue Fox Comics, a small indie comic book publisher based in the UK. I wanted to take a few moments to talk about our latest comic book, Robyn, which is a gender-flipped Robin Hood comic for all ages.
Robyn is the story of an intelligent, skilful and capable girl, who lives on her own as an outlaw in Sherwood Forest, struggling to survive. To make ends meet, she runs errands for a monk named Tuck, a shady character, who knows more than he’s letting on. The comic follows Robyn as she decides to investigate the rumours of a monster in the crags nearby.
The reviews for Robyn have been fantastic. I’ve felt extremely proud, reading about their love of the art, of the characters, of the comic as a whole. It’s a real affirmation of everything we wanted to do with the story.
One of my favourite comments, however, was from Starburst Magazine, who wrote:
“the gender of the lead protagonist isn’t a gimmick. The character isn’t overly sexualised, there’s no cheesy ‘woman doing a man’s job’ approach or any of that nonsense. What we have is a young person who lives in a medieval world trying to be the best by their own conscience.”
We took a risk by taking a well-known male character, and making them female. It’s a pitfall many haven’t survived. We didn’t want Robyn to be a poor imitation of Robin.
How did we avoid it?
My wife and co-founder, Marielle, sums it up well. “We captured the Robyn character at a completely different stage in their life, which has never really been explored, boy or girl. Robyn, because of her age, has the opportunity to grow and develop, and that’s the key; she is going to develop her own character, and through our own unique story, will face completely different characters and challenges. All of this, will shape Robyn into the person she becomes.”
Robyn isn’t simply re-treading old ground, it’s creating a new legend, with a character whose core values and skills we know something about. It’s a chance to see how some of these values came to be, a chance to understand who she is.
As the series progresses, we’ll meet other recognisable characters, too, both from the Robin Hood mythos, and from other legends. Each will be familiar, yet unique; people you know, yet don’t know.
If creators aren’t offering anything new to a gender-flipped character (whether it be boy to girl, or girl to boy), they must ask themselves why they are doing it, at all. Consumers want to be surprised, and entertained. I know I do. Creating Robyn has been one of the most gratifying projects to date, and I look forward to many more adventures with her.
I’ll leave you with another quote from Starburst Magazine:
“[Robyn] takes an old idea and makes it new. It subverts our expectations and demands that we re-think our assumptions.”
Robyn is currently raising funds on Kickstarter for printing. The campaign is fully funded, and is now into stretch goals.
In February, we’re going to be Kickstarting our latest comic book series ‘Robyn’.
Written by Simon Birks, with art by Ege Avci and letters by Lyndon White, Robyn is a gender flipped Robyn Hood action/adventure comic for ages 7 and up.
Robyn’s gender isn’t the only change we’re making! Little John does not fight with a staff, but with the crutches he uses due to disability. Scarlett is also gender flipped, Friar Tuck is slightly shadier, and Robyn and the future Sheriff of Nottingham are friends!
What’s the story about?
In issue 1, whilst Robyn is on a mission for Tuck she hears about a monster within the forest, and decides to investigate herself. What she finds is beyond anything she could ever have imagined!
We’re getting together some very unique rewards for our campaign, so keep an eye out on your email and your social media for more information!
I’d love to hear your thoughts on the story.
Around 11.30pm on 6th December, Sinners III Kickstarter campaign ended, after raising a brilliant 112% of its £1200 goal.
Kickstarter campaigns are always interesting (for interesting, read stress inducing) affairs, with a lot of work going on in the background to raise more backers. Each and every backer is vitally important, and as we learned on our very first Kickstarter (for Sinners I, as it happens, back in the mists of Feb 2015) numbers of backers can go down as well as up!
Fortunately, Sinners III was fairly steady. We are lucky enough, now, to have a following on the Kickstarter platform, who regularly back our campaigns.
So, now the money is raised, what next?
Still left to do:
- Send out the surveys – we need to know a lot about our backers in order to get everything just right
- Letter Sinners III – Lyndon White will be working his magic on the lettering for us once again.
- Order the extras, including, A4 print, T-Shirt, Postcard, to name a few – you’re never sure how many you need until the campaign finishes
- Wait for the money to come through from Kickstarter – this normally takes a couple of weeks
- Get the comics printed!
- Send the comics out to the backers.
So, the work continues.
As with all our other campaigns, the comic will be available to buy from this website as soon as it arrives at Blue Fox Comics HQ, so don’t worry if you missed the campaign.
That’s all for now – we are hoping to do posts 2 or 3 times a week from now on. There’s always a lot going on here, so we’re excited to be able to show you new stuff as it comes in!
Please subscribe to our newsletter to keep in touch, and follow our Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/etc to be kept up to date!
For now, ’nuff said.
Title: Night at the Motel
Pages: 36 full colour
Sinners goes full on horror for the next issue, Night at the Motel. Following events in Issues 1 & 2, Hope needs to find a place to rest after her first traumatic day of being dead. Unfortunately, the motel she ends up at has secrets of its own.
RHStewart once again provides the fantastic art, and for the first time supplies the beautiful cover!
Great news! From the 28th to the 30th October, 2016, Blue Fox Comics will be in the Comic Village at MCM London Comic Con with their array of titles!
The con is being held in its usual location, at the Excel Exhibition centre, and promises to be incredibly busy! Tickets are going fast, and are bookable via their website: http://www.mcmcomiccon.com/london/
Fingers crossed, we will have Lyndon White’s newest book, Sparks and the Fallen Star, which has been incredibly well received by reviewers.
We *may* also have Simon Birks’ new novel ‘The Ballad of Broken Song Book One – Death and Resurrection’ – that’s if all the stars align!
So, if you’re going to be around come Halloween weekend, and your near the Excel Centre, please come and say hello, we’re always glad to see you!
On August 16th 2016, the Hexes Kickstarter campaign for Issues 1 & 2 ended successfully!
Not only did we manage to raise the £2000 funds for printing and additional rewards, we were also able to raise a further £900+ on top of that!
This additional money meant we were able to reach four additional stretch goals:
- two double sided, full colour postcards
- four additional pages in each comic
- pencil PDF version of Issue #2
- fabric patch
The link to the campaign is here: