Thursday, 12 June 2014

Nic's Sticky Notes: Nursery Crimes

Living with a writer is a wonderful, exciting and sometimes terrifying thing.  Sometimes they leap into the room, eyes ablaze, wreathed in lightning, babbling about a new story idea like a thing possessed.

This is how I first heard about Torsobear: Yarns From Toyburg and became the letterer of the story by Cy Dethan and Peter Mason.

Some Assembly Required
Torsobear: Yarns From Toyburg
Story: Cy Dethan, Art: Peter Mason, Letters: Nic Wilkinson


I was able to pick out the words “best plot bible I've ever seen”, “80s action figure villain” and a good number of “FUCK, YEAHs” from amongst the frenzy and fist punching and in no time I was reading the script for Some Assembly Required. On page one, I was captivated; by page 3 I was in tears; by the end of 8 short pages I’d been so emotionally shaken up and down that I felt like I’d been through The Playtime!

I had to letter it!

If you talk to a letterer, and don’t get scared off by their mad rantings about their arcane obsessions with crossbars and ligatures and bleeds, they will tell you that, sometimes, when you read a script certain things pull themselves visually out of the text on the screen or page and hang there in the air before you going “Do me like this!”

The words “Mr Robones' top-shelf Trapper and Snapper” almost bit my hands off on page one. They certainly took my breath away! Now all that remained was to inveigle my way onto the book with The Toymaster, Brett Uren, and get my sticky fonts all over it!

The original art by Saoirse Louise Towler‎
that was the reward for the backer who took
us over the 50% funded point
There has been such a lot of scope to be playful and experimental with the lettering due to the nature of the story, the script and the art that I’ve been able to come up with some entirely new ways of doing things that have opened up a whole new set of spatial and temporal techniques to add to my magic bag of visual silent sound tricks.

Peter Mason’s art has been a joy to letter, as it always is. Being, as I am, mainly a product of the 80s working on this story - actually I can’t say “working” as it’s waaaaaay too much for that - has been like a trip to Neverland. When I saw his first character sketches of Snaplok, and then the full pages, come in I could not suppress a gleefully feral whoop – straight from the heart of my 10-year-old self.

All of this was before I’d even seen any of the amazing work for the book from the other teams in so many different styles that all work so well together.  The whole is a thing of beauty and I’m incredibly proud to be involved with such brilliant and passionate people.


The book is to be self-published and distributed via a Kickstarter campaign. As well as the usual rewards for backers we also have rewards for those kind souls who may not want the book, but who are helping us to spread the word. We are grateful for any help in spreading the word, and of course, for any hard earned buttons you may be able to spare for us.




What is Torsobear?


Plushie Detective Ruxby made by
Lee-Anne Godby of The Goblin Co Op
available at higher reward levels.
Teddy Ruxpin via True Detective. Inspired by the original short story featured in Glenn Møane and Magnus Aspli’s Outré anthology, Yarns from Toyburg continues to follow rookie detective Ruxby Bear and his wooden partner officer Hazbrow, as they investigate further and fall deeper into the intrigue surrounding a number of dismembered teddies. Other stories follow the exploits of cheery Toyburg’s broken citizens in the same destructive vein.


Why should we pick this up?
‘The best contribution to Outré #2 by far (in both art and writing) has to be Torsobear by Brett Uren… It is beautiful, stunning, and haunting. And I wanted more.’ – Max Delgado, Unleash The Fanboy

‘It reads like Raymond Chandler meets Teddy Ruxpin with a generous dose of Robert Crumb and we’d love to see a full series of it.’ – Pipedream Comics

‘The art style and color choices made it feel like a more disturbing and adult Hanna Barbera piece, and the blend of issues such as racism, crises of faith, and horrific crimes with a world of toys resonated with me.’ – Jodi Scaife, Fanboy Comics




Who Is Involved In Torsobear: Yarns From Toyburg?


 https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/bretturen/torsobear-yarns-from-toyburg
Cover by Hal Laren

The Toymasters


Editors – Brett Uren & Glenn Møane

The Toyburg Terrors

Writers
– Brett Uren, Glenn Møane, Cy Dethan, Brockton McKinney, Janos Honkonen, Frank Martin, Kieran Squires, Grainne McEntee & Jake Young

Artists – Brett Uren, Pete Rogers, Carlos Zamudio, Matt Rooke, Saoirse Towler, Joel Cotejar, Randy Haldeman, Harold Saxon, Jon Scrivens, Faye Harmon & Brian Traynor

Letterers – Brett Uren, Nic WIlkinson, Mick Schubert, Shawn Aldridge, Kieran Squires & Jon Scrivens

If you are a reviewer, podcaster, blogger or journalist please get in touch through the contact page if you would like more information, previews or to talk to Brett and Glenn or any of the team about the project.




Keep track of the campaign and the book’s production at http://torsobear.com 

Monday, 2 June 2014

Playtime is Over: Torsobear is Coming...




Torsobear: Yarns From Toyburg Brings Fluffy Noir Comics To Kickstarter



Torsobear is a story about the inevitable loss of innocence in a brutal world, first created by Brett Uren for the digital anthology, Outré. Expanding on the original short story, Yarns From Toyburg pulls a host of new and established creators into exploring the twisted world of Fluffy Noir.



Torsobear introduced the characters of Ruxby and Hazbrow, children's toys who are thrown into a chilling noir cycle of murder, deceit and intrigue, where the horror of events stands in stark contrast to the bright and cheerful world in which they take place.



The toys of Toyburg blissfully enjoy their waking lives. Most will never encounter anything nasty. But when they sleep, all will experience the strange and sometimes disturbing violation of The Playtime. Sometimes, they remember.
The book will be offered via a Kickstarter campaign and first week pledges will get a special extra reward of a sketch from the creator on the inside front cover of the book, in addition to any other rewards for their pledge level.



The basic pledge packages for the book alone will be:

Digital price - $10

Hardcopy price  - $25





In the fluffy noir world of Torsobear, not all toys play nice!



Welcome to the city of Toyburg, where the streets are teeming with crime, passion, and murders most foul. They are walked (for the most part) by grim detectives, burned-out has-beens, femme fatales and tragic heroes.



The dismembered bodies of teddy bears are being found in back alleys of the Mindy Mile district, and it’s up to our hero, rookie detective Ruxby Bear and his partner officer Hazbrow to solve this string of murders, no matter how high and far the clues take them.



Between cases, we take a look into the lives of Toyburg’s citizens, police and criminals. No matter where you turn, this city has something sinister hidden just behind the storybook surface.



Remember, it’s always fun until someone gets hurt..





Stories Included are:



Clean Heart, Dirty Paws – Brett Uren

Dress to Impress - Frank Martin / Joel Cotejar

Rich Toy, Poor Toy - Grainne McEntee / Matt Rooke

Some Assembly Required - Cy Dethan / Peter Mason / Nic Wilkinson

She Sang for Buttons, She Unstitched My Heart – Brett Uren / Harold Saxon / Mick Schubert

The Collector - Glenn Møane / Carlos Nicolas Zamudio / Jon Scrivens

A New Hopelessness - Kieran Squires / Faye Harmon

The Big Wind Up - Janos Honkonen / Saoirse Louise Towler / Mick Schubert

Home Invasion – Brett Uren / Brockton McKinney / Harold Saxon

Sour in the Sweet - Jake Young / Randy Haldeman / Brett Uren

We All Fall Down, Playing It the Hard Way – Brett Uren



You can find out more and keep up to date at:

The Torsobear blog – http://torsobear.com 

Twitter: #torsobear





Read the original Torsobear story for free: http://outrepress.com/?p=1216


Expected release if Kickstarter is successful: 14/07/2014
Page Count: 104
Format: Full colour

Please contact Brett Uren at bretturen@hotmail.co.uk for more details, creator interviews and samples.
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