Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Book 6:The Winglands solicited! Book 7 written! Drawing has begun!!

Howdy all!

Been a few months of focusing on work and things are chugging along!

Book 6: The Winglands is done and has been submitted to Diamond! It'll appear in the January issue of Previews(which is when you can order it from your local comic shop) and then it'll hit store shelves in March 2018!

Here's the official cover:

There will be a 1:3 alternate cover on this book by the great painter Larry Macdougall, who I think hit this out of the park!!

So that's coming in early 2018, cruising in at 41 pages plus all the trimmings and fluff.

I'm also hard at work on Book 7, the final book of the series!

The script is done and I've finished the first 5 pages of drawing as I head off to a Thanksgiving visit with the family. I'll be doing some script polishing and layouts while I'm gone, with the plan to dive back into the drawing upon my return!

This book is likely to be 40-50 pages long, so my current hope is to solicit it when I've hit page 25, probably in January/February, which would mean it hits store shelves in May/June. I'm trying to keep it relatively close to the release date for Book 6 since that book has a bit of a cliffhanger ending I figure folks won't want to wait too long for:)

Here's a quick taste of Book 7 and a rare tall panel:

For 2018 my plan is to finish the series and then dive into the convention circuit with the completed series! As usual a lot of where I pop up with depend on who actually accepts me. Sadly, the bigger cons like NYCC, C2E2, and ECCC are all run by the same company that never lets me in, so I'll probably end up at a lot of the more comic-friendly shows like Boston, Baltimore, KidsCon, MeCAF, MICE, SPX, and Heroes. But again, it'll all come down to who accepts me, whose lottery I win, etc. It will also hinge a little on when Book 7 hits, since I'm not sure I want to fly anywhere without the finished series in hand.

So we'll see how things go and I'll update the website as I know more about conventions:)

And then ideally, once the whole series is done and out, maybe next summer I'll put together the TPB of Books 4-7, allowing those folks who opted for the trade paperback to finish the matching set:)

So that's the plan! Feel free to follow me on Facebook(Farlaine the Goblin), Twitter(@TreeGoblin), or Instagram(StudioFarlaine) for more updates and behind the scenes images!

Also, there's a mailing list now too! You can sign up on the right --->>>

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Book 6, the Boston Comic Con, SPX, and the final stretch run!

The Boston Comic Con is coming up this weekend, August 11-13, and I'll be there set up at AA710. I'll have books, stickers, prints, and more, including the Book 5 Skottie Young variant, the Book 4 Charles Paul Wilson variant, and a bunch of the original art to Book 6 you can flip through.

I'll also be heading down to Maryland for the Small Press Expo, SPX, for the first time on September 16-17. I hear great things about it and it seems like an audience that's interested in something a little different.

No other conventions are planned for 2017, my focus instead on getting the series finished by the end of the year. If I can manage that, then 2018-2019 will be a world tour of sorts with the finished series, where I try to get back to all the major conventions I've hit since the beginning. Boston, NY, Baltimore, Heroes, C2E2, KidsCon, MeCAF, MICE, and ideally add a bunch more to the west. I was even talking to a friend about trying the Helsinki Con one year!

But for now the focus is on getting the series done. It's been a busy few months, finishing up Book 6: The Winglands. A few distractions and reshoots required for the end of Act 3. I think it's coming together OK.

Then it's immediately on to writing Book 7, the culmination of the series! Lots of plot points and tidbits to tie up, lots of questions to answer. I think I'm going to have way too many ideas to cram into this, so it'll probably either be a very long story or very, very dense!

I'll leave you with a fun panel from the new book, The Winglands!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Book 5 Hits Stores Today! Now With a Pen Name!

Farlaine the Goblin ~ Book 5: The Vaultlands hits store shelves today! Pick it up at your local comic shop, here on, and soon on Amazon!

Farlaine's latest adventure through The Vaultlands is one of the more background-intensive stories I've done, but hopefully you enjoy it!

There's one thing though that may stand out for readers of the series - Farlaine the Goblin now has an author listed!

What's in a Pen Name?

For anyone that's followed and read Farlaine the Goblin over the last few years, the one thing most people notice is that there is no name listed in it. It's simply a story, presented as it exists. No credit, no author, no illustrator.

This was always done for a variety of reasons, but at it's core there were two main ones.

First and foremost, I wanted people to read the series as it is. Don't let the author's name influence you. Regardless of my experience, gender, age, race, or anything else you may guess from a person's name, the idea was to let people simply read the series on it's own merits.

But the second reason was also a lot simpler - I like my privacy. I could care less about celebrity, and on the off chance the series had succeeded, I didn't want to lose that. So I'd always planned to have a pen name.

But a pen name is not an easy thing to decide on. A pen name is an alter-ego that the world sees and judges you on, and in many cases the pen name is remembered far more than the real person. It is often the first exposure someone has to the work, and it can be used to even convey a personality.

While most people know Mark Twain was a pen name for Samuel Clements, not as many seem to realize the long list of actors whose pseudonyms have been used for decades. Chevy Chase, Natalie Portman, Jon Stewart, Jamie Foxx, and on and on.

In comics there are plenty as well, from Frank Quitely to Moebius and Peyo and Herge.

A name truly matters too. We often don't give it the credit it deserves, but for every Zach Galifinakis that succeeds, there are twenty others like Demi Moore and Cary Grant whose names are unique and simple and easily absorbed.

A simple name helps build an audience and be memorable.

Some people are simply born with great names, like Stephen King or Ridley Scott or Jeremy Bastian. Most of us fall somewhere else, with names that we may be proud of, but which don't roll off the tongue or illicit the kind of remember-ability you'd like.

So I thought and I pondered and I made a great many lists.

I spent quite a few years trying to come up with one I was happy with, starting long before the first issue of Farlaine was ever written.

But I never came up with anythying I liked.

So Farlaine was released with no name on it, lest I use one I would grow to hate and be stuck with. There would be nothing worse than choosing something over a weekend and regretting it for decades!

And so I thought and I pondered for years while I worked on the comics, and the books continued to be released anonymously. It was quite fun to see how people reacted to it, and it ranged from curiosity to entertainment to downright anger. There were some people who were actually offended by my series being anonymous!

My plan was always to do more than comics though, so it had to be something equally marketable to novels and movies and whatever else I may one day find myself in.

One of my favorite pen names ever was Mark Twain, taken from a simple riverboat phrase for marking depth. (As a simple example of the power of a name, do you think his work would be so beloved if he'd kept his earlier nom de plume, Thomas Jefferson Snodgrass?)

I had some interesting ideas that sounded cool but fell apart over time. Things that seemed neat, but were not remotely "me". I liked the name John Gotham as a simple, straightforward 'cool name'. It had that Batman and NYC vibe to it, which while awesome and cool, also seemed horribly out of place for a person like me who hates cities.

The years passed and ideas moved around, and I continued to make lists and throw them out, until I eventually came up with a name that I quite liked.

You see, I have a little pug dog, a cute and squishy thing, and her personality is very similar to my own, silly and clownish and comical. Pugs are a unique breed too in that they have their own word for a collected group, outside of a pack or a kennel. A group of pugs is known as a grumble.

So with Mark Twain bouncing around in the back of my mind, I realized that Pug Grumble was a name that somehow suited me quite well.

Is it silly and ridiculous? Absolutely! But it also feels accurate and true to the kinds of stories and humor I write.

I sat on that name for the last 3 years, letting it sit and percolate. I mentioned it to a few friends, most of whom rolled their eyes and called me an idiot.

But I decided that, idiot that I am, I wanted to be the idiot who was happy with their strange name.

So that was that, and with Book 5 of Farlaine the Goblin, it's finally out there in print.

I'll continue to sign books with the same signature, and I'll continue to use the letter j to sign any covers I work on, but at least in the credits, it will simply be listed as Pug Grumble.

In my mind the J is an initial never seen, and the longer pen name could even be J. Pug Grumble.

So there you go. A new pen name to go along with a new book.

Now go out and buy a copy of The Vaultlands!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Convention Appearances for 2017

Convention season is about to get underway, so on the off chance people were saving up rotten fruit to pelt me with, here's my list of potential appearances for 2017! A few are awaiting acceptance still, but this is the potential list schedule if everything came through.
  • September 22-24, 2017 - Baltimore Comic Con (still deciding)  
  • October 5-8 - New York Comic Con (applied, but not expecting to get in)
Wait Listed:

  • September 28 - October 1 - Cartoon Crossroads Columbus(applied, rejected, waiting list) 
  • October 21-22 - MICE(Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo) (applied, rejected, waiting list)

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Book 5 is in Previews! Book 6 is written and being drawn!

OK, I'll admit it, I'm horrible at updating the website!

Between the website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Kickstarter there are a lot of things to do that take away from the actual producing of a book! And being a one person(and one pug) act, there's only so much time and lots to do!

But enough with the excuses - this is an exciting update!!

Why, you ask?

Because Farlaine the Goblin ~ Book 5: The Vaultlands is solicited in the March issue of Previews!

I have a spiffy ad on page 407 that makes mention of the coolest part of this book too - I have a variant cover by epic-cover-god and iconic-hat-wearer Skottie Young!!

This took me 3 years of bribing and cajoling to get, so hopefully it helps sell a couple of extra books(it's mixed in at a 1:3 ratio with my cover, so it should be easily attainable for Skottie's fans!).

Check out the awesome job he did and the equally wonderful coloring by Jean-Francois Beaulieu:

So please please please, if you dig the series and want to support it, contact your local comic shop and ask them to order it for you! The Diamond Code is MAR172021 and every issue helps!

I'm also hard at work on Book 6: The Winglands! I wrote the script in January and started drawing it mid-February. I'm inking page 5 right now and hope to keep this book a little shorter than the last, maybe around 35 pages. So far so good!

Here are a couple of fun images from the new book:

OK, now back to the drawing board(literally!).