Always Write

Peter Rogers – Writer

Month: March, 2015

Bags of Action Episode 20 – Escape from New York

Looks like we just about managed to squeeze out another episode before March was over. For the second month in a row not only does our pick star Kurt Russell, it’s also written and directed by John Carpenter. Listen in and find out what we thought of Escape from New York.

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London Super Comic Con 2015

There was a time when UK conventions tended to all start with a B (I’m looking at you, Bristol and Birmingham), these days the location of the two most unmissable shows begin with an L (Leeds and London). Last Saturday I ventured up to the big smoke for London Super Comic Con and I’m very glad I did.

Just like last year I travelled up in the morning and headed back the same day, but I’m already planning to make sure I can experience the whole weekend in 2016. I got to the ExCel Exhibition Centre at about 11.30, following two hours on the train and forty five minutes on the tube.  For the first hour or so I must have only moved about twenty feet down the first aisle, as I tended to know lots of people who were either behind tables or walking the floor. It felt like Bristol conventions of old, everywhere I looked I saw familiar faces and old friends.

It’s a very different show from Thought Bubble, with a much more big two and US focus and it’s good to have two well run shows that cater to slightly different needs. The venue is big, the layout spacious, the air con a god send and the overall vibe very laid back and positive. The crowd is diverse, with lots of families attending and with a far more even gender split than at conventions of old. I had my first professional pass for this year’s show and that, coupled with so many people I knew being in attendance, meant I was the most relaxed and socially adept I’ve probably ever been at a show, certainly in the pre pub stages of proceedings anyway.

Where 2014 was about talking to publishers, I spoke to IDW, Boom and Titan about pitches at last year’s event, 2015 was all about friends, contacts and the social side. I got to catch up with some of the no (comic) code creators, like Marc Laming, Mike Collins, Ron Marz and Brett Uren , grabbed lunch and compared career notes with Martin Fisher, hung out with podcasting behemoths like Barry Nugent from Geek Syndicate,  Gavin and Dan from the Sidekickcast and the comic book cardboard crappy cosplayers Tim, Matt and John from the hat decides and QPAW!. I got to check in with my old Orang Utan Comics colleagues Ian Sharman, David Wynne and Holly Rose, talked shop with Cy Dethan and Nic Wilkinson and met up with some of my Comics Experience workshop buddies – Chris Hurst and Ryan O’ Sullivan. The only thing I didn’t really find time to do was to actually see any of the exhibitors to get sketches or pick up books, considering the stellar line up that’s a crying shame.

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Mark Millar turned up, which suggests any hope of Kapow! returning looks even more unlikely. Jonathan Ross had a table to promote his trade paperback collection for Revenge from Image Comics, with artist Ian Churchill, and Johnny Vegas turned up on the other side of the table seemingly buying every small press book in sight (expect to see him writing for 2000AD before the year is out).

Despite having to curtail my time at the pub, whisking myself away from The Fox by 9 to ensure I got the 10pm train back to Cardiff, I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I’m already counting down the days to next year’s show.

New look Comic Book Outsiders site

Like Knot’s Landing, Frasier, Joey and Crusade, Bags of Action is actually a spin-off. The show came about thanks to parent podcast Comic Book Outsiders. I started off as a listener and forum contributor, then an interviewee, before becoming an occasional co-host on the show, standing in when Scott Grandison was doing his best Uncle Traveling Matt impression.

Years later, Geek Syndicate presenters and recent TV sensations, Barry Nugent and David Monteith guested on an episode of CBO, where they talked about action movie classic Predator. That discussion lead to the creation of our action movie podcast, which I co-host with CBO’s own Steve Aryan. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Comic Book Outsiders now consists of three podcasts, CBO itself, Bags of Action and new show Crash Landing. You can read what Steve has to say about the broadened line up here. You can also catch up on all three shows by visiting the new look CBO website that covers the whole network too, the plan is for the three of us to be a bit more visible on social media, so if you’re a listener please feel free to interact with us.

Writer’s Room

I’ve been co-writing comics with Steve Aryan since 2011 and we have two titles in development together, Flux and The Promise with artists Maysam Barza (Fubar) and Simone Guglielmini (Near Death) respectively.  When we began work on our third collaboration, we decided that two heads may not be enough.

We’ve been taking a US TV style Writer’s Room approach to our next project, with one overarching storyline, told through a series of one shots penned by a variety of writers. Initially we began with four of us, working through the concept and breaking down the overall story via Skype. We then each pitched two one shot ideas and collectively agreed which were the strongest ones, those strongest ones would be scripted by the writer who pitched them (the idea of writing each other’s wasn’t something we were quite ready for yet). Sadly one of our number had to pull out due to other commitments, leaving us with myself, Steve and Cy Dethan (Cancertown, Indifference Engine) as the line-up for ‘Season One”.

It’s been exciting to compare notes between us and to start creating a world and set of characters together. I’ll have more to report on this project in the coming months. Steve had more to say on it here.