Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009: The Year In Review

Well, it's been a busy year, and as you can probably tell from my intermittent posting over the last few months, it hasn't let up much as we head into the final days of 2009.

This was my first full year doing nothing but comics since leaving L.A. almost a decade ago. After years of struggling to make ends meet at the start of my career as a comic book artist (which I'm shocked to say began way back in 1993), I've always insisted on keeping a side job to help make up for the empty spots in my art schedule. But this year, I had too much comic book work to manage even a part-time job at the bookstores where I've been working off and on for the last four of five years.

I started the year finishing up the MIRROR'S EDGE mini-series with Rhianna Pratchett for WildStorm (which just came out in trade paperback form). In the midst of the final issues, it was time for another visit to the Borderlands Press Writing Boot Camp, where I previewed the first few chapters of the FADE novel I've been working on.

Not long after wrapping up MIRROR'S EDGE, I was bowled over with the offer to draw four issues of IDW's new DOCTOR WHO ongoing series. Everyone who has read this blog knows how big a deal that was for me, and I leapt at the chance to work with one of my favorite characters. Just got the last issue of my story arc in the mail actually, and I'm still insanely proud of the work we put into it. A truly great script from Tony Lee, and some stunning colors from Charlie Kirchoff, not to mention the masterful editorial prodding for pages by Denton Tipton at IDW.

Almost immediately after DOCTOR WHO, I started developing projects for a couple of my favorite editors, including a few things that I might be writing as well as drawing. Still can't talk about any of those yet, but as soon as I can, I'll post all the news here.

Within a month, I was back at WildStorm to draw an issue of an entirely different secret project, which I've finally finished this week.

And yes, I'm already at work on the next project, and yes, it's a secret.

On the public appearance side of things, I was able to go to both of the Albany Comic-Cons held this year, including the last one, which featured a special WITCHBLADE convention cover variant that finally allowed me to say that I've worked for every major American comic book company. And I made what's become an annual trip to NECON over the summer, where I got to hang out with my writing friends Dan Waters, Tom Monteleone, F. Paul Wilson, and Doug Clegg, among others. Not to mention my old friend Ellen Williams, who for reasons I will never reveal is now known as the Christmas Ninja. Don't ask.

Somewhere in all of this I found time to keep working on the FADE manuscript, write some short stories, and develop a few ideas of my own for my long-delayed Pilot Season project, which I'll be returning to at the start of January.

So that's the year that was, as it were. Not sure what 2010 will hold, but I have a feeling it will include a handful of secret projects, finishing the FADE novel, and a lot of hours at the drawing board.

I hope you all had a good year, and I hope next year will be even better.

(And on a personal note, I got engaged this year, as well. Just saying. Kind of a good year for me.)


Thomas said...

Sh** !
A few days more and you would have had the french edition of The Keep in 2009...

matthew dow smith said...

It would be a great way to start 2010, Thomas. Thanks for putting it together.

Hope you had a good holiday.


Daniel Waters said...

Next year will be different...

Douglas Clegg said...

Congratulations!!! (on the engagement) and on all the great work you've been doing.

matthew dow smith said...

Thanks, Doug. I appreciate that. And I'm looking forward to whatever new Douglas Clegg books 2010 might bring.