Posts Tagged Takin’ care of business

Thumbpocalypse update

It’s time for a long-overdue thumb update. To catch you up to speed (or for first-time readers), here’s a brief recap: I fractured my drawing thumb in mid-November and had surgery on November 27. My hand migrated from cast to cast for about a month, after which I started two months of physical therapy.

My top priority is getting my thumb back to normal. If you’ve ever had a sprain, strain, fracture or other debilitating injury, you know that physical therapy is vital to the recovery process. But even after two months of semi-weekly and weekly sessions, I’m still at about 90% of full mobility. I’m told by my surgeon (Dr. Bryan Leek) and my physical therapist (Angela Witucki) that this will likely take a year before all the excess internal scar tissue is reabsorbed, collagen returns (I think) and the tendons (or ligaments — I always confuse them) stretch back to previous limits.

Note the asymmetry


So for now, I have new limitations on my right hand — I can’t open my grip as far as my left hand and I can’t ball up a fist quite as tight as my left hand (see above). The biggest limitation is the tendon (ligament?) at my thumb’s first knuckle, the one just past the thumbnail. That’s been tightened to the point where it takes A LOT of warming up to get a decent bend out of it. This makes it somewhat difficult to write, draw and use an ink brush the way I used to, especially inking smooth arcs or writing the letter U (which ends up looking like a V).

But that’s all inside stuff. From the outside, my right hand looks pretty normal. There’s an inch-long scar that runs alongside a slightly swollen knuckle, both of which should fade over time.

Is there a doctor in the house? (Yes— that's our dog, The Doctor)


I’ve been putting up new strips on an irregular basis. Once the cartooning gears of industry are grinding at full strength, you’ll see Cool Jerk back to a weekly schedule. Thanks for hanging in there!


Cool Jerk and San Diego Comic-Con 2012

This year marks Cool Jerk’s 10th year of tabling at San Diego Comic-Con International, and my 30th in-a-row within these doors! Let me tell you what’s in store at the Cool Jerk table:


First and foremost, this year’s new comic is The Girl with the Donut Tattoo, which I co-created with Darlene. It’s her first comic (she wrote it) and we’re unveiling it at SDCCI. It’s $5 a la carte, or FREE with a $40 purchase at the Cool Jerk table! Read more about it here! We have only 100 copies available, so it’s first-come, first-served!

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Speaking of, I have less than 15 copies of Cool Jerk OMG Color! Vol. 1 from last year, which is $4 a pop or FREE if you buy Hodabeast (Vol. 1) and Chickadoowa (Vol. 2).

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Available now!

Remember last fall when I did my second 24-Hour Comic? Well, now you can get one. It’s a reasonably priced $2!

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Another item that’s perfect for your house, office or motor home mobile meth lab is the Cool Jerk Canvas Panel. I’ve added a few NEW panel choices to the series I started in 2010, and I’m sure you’ll want to buy 8-9 at a time! $15 each.


ALSO, I have a premium item for SDCCI— the Longform Canvas Panel! This is really limited to what you see here, in both black and white variations. They run $50 apiece. NOTE: Want your favorite strip on a canvas? Worry not— I will also take orders at the show!

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And what would Cool Jerk be without high-quality cotton body armor? Available in a myriad of sizes for both guys and gals are THREE shirts: the 20th Anniversary CJ shirt, which has probably your favorite character on it (above), the JERKea shirt, a sure-fire crowd-pleaser (above), and the tried-and-true Body Shots variety (go here to see that one). The JERKea shirt is $20, the other ones are $15.

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I also have all the other items you could ever possibly want, incl. ALL my books, Sharpie original art breakdowns, stickers, buttons and the like. We’re in the same spot we’ve always been, right by the communal baths. Here’s a little map I whipped up while you were flossing.

Click it to JUMP IN THERE!

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Hope to see you there!


Denver Comic Con 2012 photo recap!

Denver held its first comic convention last weekend, and I’m so glad I went!


I set up camp in Artist Alley at an 8′ table (two feet longer than a typical comic-con table). Knowing this before-hand gave me time to get myself a brand-new Cool Jerk table throw. I sold out of some inventory and met hundreds of enthusiastic comics fans and professionals. And my voice didn’t even give out! The only bummer about the show was that Darlene had to stay in San Diego. But I was able to keep her — and whoever was following my Twitter feed — in the loop.

Thanks to everyone who came by the table, got a crash course in Cool Jerk and Doc Splatter and bought some of my books, buttons, canvas panels and other stuff!

And now, on with the show!


Three favorite Avengers — Ms. Marvel, Wonder Man and Captain America!


Another Avenger, Thor, and a female Asgardian warrior.


Speaking of gods and goddesses, wouldja believe there were two Snowbird cosplayers??


If I just say “SPOOOOON!” will that be enough of a caption? (It’s the cast from The Tick)


By the winds of Watoomb, it’s Doctor Strange!


EXTERMINATE! Doctor Who (the 11th Doctor) and a Dalek.


Let me display my geek cred by identifying Troia (left) and the Cassie Sandsmark version of Wonder Girl.


Here’s Giane Morris as Jubilee, complete with snapping bubble gum action! Excellent costume!


A popular theme in Denver was the “crossplay,” evidenced by these versions of Thor and Loki…


…and this version of The Creeper…


…and probably the best and most original costume of the whole weekend, I give you Firestorm, The Nuclear (Wo)Man (and Wonder Girl)!


Sorry, Blue Bear — You need an attendee badge just like everyone else!


Rocky Mountain HI HOW’S IT GOING?

A map for your convenience
Next weekend — Friday, June 15 through Sunday, June 17 — I’ll be at the Mile High City’s inaugural Denver Comic Con. I’m really excited for this show. I don’t know why. Is it because this is Denver’s first comic convention? Is it the anticipation of preaching the gospel of Cool Jerk to hundreds of comics aficionados who otherwise may never attend San Diego Comic-Con? Is it the big blue bear?

I know FOR A FACT that Cool Jerk is read by folks in Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, New Mexico, Arizona, the Dakotas and Nebraska.* If you happen to live within an 800-mile radius of Denver, please come to the ‘con and show Colorado that you support comics culture and their creators (especially independent, self-publishing wackjobs like myself)! I’d love to meet you and get some ‘Jerk into your hands. Er… sell you some books and stuff.

*But not Kansas. Go figure.


Multi-media Marvel!


I don’t know why or how, but the stars must’ve been in alignment — the last couple of weeks were a crazy convergence of Cool Jerk media saturation.

• I was interviewed for a KPBS feature on San Diego webcomic creators (the other interviewee was Little Vampires’ Rebecca Hicks), conducted by Beth Accomando and camera work/production by Katie Euphrat. This originally aired on Friday, April 27, and was subsequently broadcast on KPBS radio and posted online. Beth and Katie were terrific and I’m really happy with the end result!

ALSO: if you jump to my Facebook page, you can see a time-lapse clip of me drawing Puppy and Armpit (requires Flash).

• A few days later, I showed up on a San Diego 6 (The CW network) San Diego Living morning segment spotlighting Southern California Comics and their big plans for Free Comic Book Day, May 5. Jamie Newbold (SCC’s owner) and I go way back, and I was happy to participate by holding a signing at his shop on FCBD. Thanks, Jamie!

• I can also be heard on an Austin, TX-based podcast, conducted by Timothy Danger of Old Man and Bitter Girl Productions. We met at the Staple! show a couple months ago. Tune in and listen to me say “um” a quarter-million times!


WonderCon ’12 recap!

Aw, you didn’t think I’d let WonderCon go by without a requisite photo recap, did you? FOR SHAME!


Let’s start with Megan Rae as Daenerys Targaryen — chowing on a horse heart — from HBO’s Game of Thrones. A week ago, I wouldn’t have had any idea who this was (Darlene and I binged on all 10 episodes over three days). And what’s funny is Megan did the exact same thing at the same time! I swear we weren’t in collusion! You might recognize Megan — she was a Dalek at SDCCI ‘09.


Here’s Megara (from Disney’s Hercules) and Aang the Last Airbender. First time I’ve ever seen a Megara cosplayer… and about the 400th Airbender.


Here are some pals (L to R) — Michelle Mauk, who was tabling a few spots down from me. Deb Aoki, who was on assignment for About.com. You can also see Patrick Scullin of Super Siblings, standing next to the Cool Jerk table.


More pals — the never-not-hyperactive Little Vampires creator Rebecca Hicks and one-man, ogre-smiting army Daniel Davis of Steam Crow fame.


The movie version of the Avengers walked by.


Here’s the charming and delightful Sarah Straub and her husband Beau.


Dawww! What’s a comic-con without a little Star Wars crossplay action?


Mrowr! Male version of Cheetah, yes?


And probably my favorite cosplayer of the show — Darkwing Duck. Reasons? A) C’mon. DARKWING DUCK! B) She was totally into it. C) Her little gun smoked (OK it was probably water vapor). D) It was refreshing to not see a beloved kid-friendly character all slutted out. I’m looking at you, Booba Fett!


Cool Jerk invades WonderCon invades Anaheim!

It’s true! Cool Jerk will be at WonderCon this weekend (March 16-18) at the Anaheim Convention Center. For the first time since I can remember, WonderCon has left its home in San Francisco and has laid down temporary roots in Anaheim. I understand this is only a 2012 thing; WonderCon will return to the Moscone Center in 2013. The good news is that it becomes a local (more or less) convention for Cool Jerk, but the bad news is that likely several thousand Bay Area-native attendees will not be making the six-hour drive to Orange County.

The last time I tabled at WonderCon was in 2010, before Cool Jerk Vol. 3: Bimboozled, Cool Jerk Canvas Panels, Cool Jerk OMG Color! Vol. 1 and my second 24-Hour Comic were printed (not to mention two new t-shirt designs). This means Bay-Area WonderCon attendees will see a bunch of new stuff at the table. Plus, I hope WonderCon’s Southern California presence attracts a bunch of folks who maybe otherwise aren’t able to attend San Diego Comic-Con. Either way, I’ll have all sorts of stuff to sell, and will be offering excellent convention-only discounts!

Click it to WONDERCON-size it!


Here’s a map I whipped up to help you find me among the thousands of retailers, cosplayers and attendees. Hope to see you there!


Cool Jerk does Staple!

This weekend (March 3 & 4), Team Cool Jerk will be tabling at Staple! — The Independent Media Expo. We’ll be splitting a table with amazing simian-centric illustrator Chet Phillips! YOU CAN’T MISS US!

Here's a lil' map I whipped up for ya!


We’re really looking forward to it because A) we’ve never been to Austin, TX (although I’ve been to Austin, NV), B) we’ve heard nothing but good things about the show — which has expanded to two days starting this year, C) we’ve heard the attendees have a voracious appetite for indy comics and self-publishing creative types, and D) speaking of “having an appetite,” Darlene and I will be poking around the Austin area for cool and unusual places to eat. On the list: The Junction House in Kingsland. If the house looks familiar but you can’t quite place where you’ve seen it, let me give you a couple of hints: Tobe Hooper. Chainsaw. Leatherface.

I can’t wait to infect the Lone Star State with Cool Jerk madness. Hope to see you there! (If you can’t make it but have a Texan pal who likes comics — tell him/her to head on over!)


Cool Jerk’s comic-con commitments for 2012

Since my checks evidently didn’t bounce, I can now share the official schedule of Cool Jerk comic-con appearances in 2012 thus far; Cool Jerk may attend a ‘con or two later in the year. (Any suggestions?)

Staple! • Austin, TX

March 3-4

We’ve never been to Austin or Staple! so we’re really looking forward to this little independent show. We’ve heard nothing but good things about the city, the people and the attendees’ appetite for comics.

WonderCon • Anaheim

March 16-18

This will be Cool Jerk’s fifth year at WonderCon! They moved the venue from San Francisco while the Moscone Center is being renovated, so it’ll be interesting to see who makes the pilgrimage down from the Bay Area.

Phoenix Comicon • Phoenix

May 27-30

Really on the fence about Phoenix Comicon. The last time I tabled there (2010) it seemed more like “early Halloween” than a place for people to buy comics. So I’m likely giving it a pass.

Denver Comic Con • Denver

June 15-17

Cool Jerk has never exhibited in Denver, either… and that’s probably because Denver has never had a comic-con before now! The inaugural Denver Comic Con looks to fill the comic-con void in the Rockies, drawing in people from several adjacent states!

Comic-Con International • San Diego

July 11-15

Ten years in a row for Cool Jerk, in the same spot as always (Small Press K10, next to the restrooms and vomitorium)!

GeekGirlCon • Seattle

TBD (October?)

In lieu of spring’s Emerald City Comic-Con, Cool Jerk will be attending the second GeekGirlCon in the fall (if they hold a second con — stay tuned).

So mark your calendars, put in vacation time, book those flights and bring your wallets!


Buggin’ out!

Click it for detail!


Thought I’d do a quick recap of my Cool Jerk book signing at The Comic Bug in Manhattan Beach last Wednesday.

I arrived a bit early (I padded my drive time by an extra hour because it was raining pretty hard between San Diego and L.A.) and hung out with The Bug Crew— Mike, Jun and Greg. By time I got my table set up, justJENN and her youthful entourage (read: kids) arrived with boxes of cupcakes for book-buyers.

And let me tell you about the cupcakes. When I opened a box and peeked in, I burst into laughter. JENN had decorated each of the scrumptious red velvet cupcakes with a little Cool Jerk art element! So people could choose a Yuri Tomato cupcake, a Ghost of Paul Lynde cupcake or a projectile-puking Seashelly Dumpster cupcake (I ate that one). There were a couple bonus cupcakes adorned with images of my face and business card. (I worried if someone would choose those!)

Turnout was pretty good for a dreary* and humid Wednesday, and nearly everyone who stopped by the table and bought something was a new face! Thanks to Felix, Michelle and her family, Greg (and Alex, by proxy), Alan, Liz and Dianne (aka Pirate Space Queen) for adding Cool Jerk books to your Buy Pile this week! Also I got to meet comics writer Tracey Claverie. He was doing a signing for his comic, Scar Unit, right next to me. When there were lulls in patrons we ended up talking about comics influences, inappropriate cosplay and the best cheeseburgers in the tri-county area. Good guy, that Tracey.

Thanks again to The Comic Bug and justJENN, without whom the signing wouldn’t have been possible.

*Steve Jobs, R.I.P.


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