The Golden Gate

April 19, 2010

We have crossed over the Golden Gate! Many things have come to pass since the last posting. First and foremost we have signed the contract with the Andrea Brown Literary Agency! Agent Mary Kole is on the case and will be searching the wide world of publishers for a house to put Terra Tempo in. This is an exciting milestone in our brief history!

In the beginning of April we went to Wondercon in San Francisco. This comic convention was a ton of fun and a whole lot of work. We gave away teasers of Terra Tempo, sold plush wooly mammoths, t-shirts and posters and talked wit thousands of people throughout the weekend. We also stayed out late, ate some great sushi, and had fun watching the hotel nightlife in full costume revery celebrating the wonder of the fantastic realms.

That trip and the convention inspired a new project: “Blunderbuss Wanderlust: Being an Account of the Temporal Travels of Colonel Victor Von Vector and the Eras of His Ways.” It is a 34 page travelogue of equal number illustrations and sonnets about Victors journey from the Cambrian period to the modern era.

The last week has been an inspired time as we rushed to get the project together. Chris finished the inking this weekend. I finished the sonnets on Friday and Erica cleaned them up on Saturday.

We’re almost ready to take this one to print! The best part about an indy project: instant gratification! We will have copies ready for sale by the time Chris goes to the midwest convention in May.

This project also serves as a great primer for the work to be done with book two of Terra Tempo. We leave for the research trip to the 4 corners region in one week. Wow! We’ll be busy until then!


Emerald City Comicon

March 16, 2010

Chris Herndon and I went to the Emerald City Comicon this past weekend.  I’m going to say Christopher Herndon’s name repeatedly throughout this post so that all the people from Christopher Herndon’s past can find out about the new project that Christopher Herndon has been working on for the past year.  Because in the past, Christopher Herndon was not working on comics for kids and there may be some confusion if you were a fan of his from the past and were looking for Christopher Herndon now.

Me?  I’m a total newbie to this world of Comicons.  In fact, the Emerald City was my first ever comic con.  I had a blast!  It was great walking around and checking out all the costumes people had on, looking at other artists and the works they created, and of course, buying stuff!  I found series 4 and 5 packs of Garbage Pail Kids and I found a Darth Vader helmet carrying case with Star Wars figures included!  I told everyone I was shopping for my kids, but I think I was shopping for my inner kid and finding memories from my youth.

My favorite work I saw?  Sky Pirates of Neo Terra!  This series by Josh Wagner, Camilla D’Errico and Sean Megaw is super cool with great art and a great story line.  Check it out if you get the chance.

I was not impressed with the sheer volume of zombie comics.  It seems to me like that market is a bit flooded.  Also, I kept asking myself, where are all the kids? Did they get eaten by zombies?  It seems to me that there should be way more kids at these events.  But, then again, I guess there were not many people selling comics made for kids.  I’m glad Christopher Herndon is working on a comic for kids and not on a zombie comic.

I can say , I am very excited to get on the scene with the book as soon as possible.  I saw our niche and how it can be filled and now I’m excited to do it.  I think Christopher Herndon will be great at making sketches for kids at these conventions.  Parents, get your wallets!

We’ll be down in San Francisco for Wondercon selling wooly mammoths and giving away free teasers of Terra Tempo!  Yup, Christopher Herndon, myself and Erica Melville will be in SF!  And our intern, Michelle, will be there too!

Thank you,



Tracking the Flood

February 24, 2010

This is from an article in the Oregonian about the path of the Missoula Floods.  Read on and learn more about why we’ve been so fascinated by these floods:

Play by play of the flow action of the Missoula Floods

Geologists find a way to simulate the great Missoula floods

By Joe Rojas-Burke, The Oregonian

February 20, 2010, 8:00PM

View full sizeEric Baker/The OregonianAn hour-by-hour simulation of the Missoula floods.Floodwaters rise more than 1,000 feet as they slam into the Columbia River Gorge from the east. The torrent blasts through the narrows at 60 mph, carrying truck-size boulders and house-size icebergs. Reaching Portland, water loaded with gravel and dirt roils to a depth of 400 feet, leaving tiny islands at the summits of Mount Tabor and Rocky Butte.

Geologists have spent decades piecing together evidence to tell the story of the great Missoula floods that reshaped much of Oregon and Washington between 18,000 and 15,000 years ago.

Now scientists have found a way to travel back in time to watch the megafloods unfold, in a virtual bird’s eye view. Their computer simulation displays the likely timing and play-by-play action, starting with the collapse of an ice dam and outpouring of a lake 200 miles across and 2,100 feet deep.

The computer model, developed by Roger Denlinger with the U.S. Geological Survey in Vancouver and Colorado-based geophysicist Daniel O’Connell, is filling gaps in scientific explanations of the floods and the baffling landforms they left, including the fabled Channeled Scablands — scars hundreds of miles long cut into the bedrock of eastern Washington and visible from outer space. The simulations also may help settle a lingering scientific controversy about what caused the repeating ice-age catastrophes.

“It’s just really powerful visualization that gives a sense of the scale of the floods, how they came down through the channel system and backed up the big tributary valleys,” said Jim O’Connor, a hydrologist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Portland who has written extensively on the Missoula floods. He said the modeling work provides the first “really good information” on the timing of events.

During the last ice age, a continent-spanning ice sheet built from massively expanded glaciers descended from the Canadian Rocky Mountains to reach deep into Washington, Idaho and Montana. Glacial Lake Missoula formed behind a miles-long dam of ice across what is now the valley of the Clark Fork and Pend Oreille rivers running from Montana to northeast Washington. The dam formed and collapsed dozens of times over a span of three thousand years.

In the simulation of one of the largest possible floods, raging water quickly overwhelms the hills near Spokane and races overland to the south and west. The intense, overland flows carve the miles-long scars of the scablands between Spokane and Pasco, Wash.

Thirty-eight hours later, swirling, mud-darkened waters converge at the narrowing of the Columbia at Wallula Gap, where the backed-up flow rises 850 feet above river level (1,150 feet above sea level). An immense volume of water blasts through the narrows at fire-hose velocity. Flow exceeds 1.3 billion gallons per second — a thousand times greater than the Columbia’s average flows today.

Lake Missoula’s water, all 550 cubic miles of it, drains in 55 hours — less than three days — according to the model. At that time, the flood surge peaks in the Columbia Gorge at The Dalles, rising 950 feet above river level (1,000 feet above sea level), spilling over the gorge walls in places, and flooding the valleys of tributaries for miles upstream.

Inundation of the Willamette Valley peaks on the seventh day after dam burst, in the simulation. Flooding reaches as far south as Eugene. Loaded with mud and gravel, the flood dumps sediment across the entire valley. Repeated floods build a layer 100 feet thick in Woodburn.

Such a vast inundation, far greater than anything ever witnessed in historical time, seemed impossible to geologists in the 1920s, when J Harlen Bretz proposed that the scablands resulted from a catastrophic flood, not eons of gradual erosion. The idea didn’t gain mainstream acceptance until the 1960s. Since then, geologists have found evidence that Lake Missoula emptied catastrophically dozens of times during the last ice age.

But controversy persists. A few scientists assert that the cataclysmic floods must have had multiple sources, not just an outburst from Lake Missoula. John Shaw of the University of Alberta in Edmonton, for instance, has proposed that an enormous reservoir beneath the ice sheet over much of central British Columbia boosted the flooding.

The new simulation suggests that discharge from Lake Missoula alone would have been powerful enough. The simulated flood reaches peak stages all along its route that match the evidence visible today in sediment, with one big exception: At Wallula Gap, water levels in the simulation fell short by as much as 130 feet.

“It’s pretty clear, if Lake Missoula is enough to hit all the other high water marks, you don’t need another source of water,” Denlinger said. Calculating the convoluted paths of such a massive flood requires an immense amount of number crunching. Simulating one flood requires more than 8 months of computer time, Denlinger said.

But the computer simulation isn’t likely to end the debate. The fact that it can’t reproduce the maximum flooding at Wallula Gap leaves room for doubts. And some experts say there is direct evidence for an additional source of flood waters from beneath the ice sheet that covered the Okanagan Valley.

“It is conceivable that other valleys in southern British Columbia contributed water to the scablands but the field evidence necessary to test these possibilities has not been fully documented,” said earth scientist Jerome-Etienne Lesemann at the University of Aarhus in Denmark.

“There are a number of unanswered questions,” he said. “That makes the whole Channeled Scablands story a really interesting and intriguing geological puzzle.”

— Joe Rojas-Burke


Rolling Along

February 23, 2010

We have some good news folks! But we’re not at liberty to share it all at the moment. So, we’ll just take the joy and put it away until everything is finalized.

All good new aside, we here at Craigmore Creations are in the final push to finish the color draft of Terra Tempo. The photo is part Erica working on the color and part Red Room, our study room at Craigmore Creations, where I’m working on the next story. Off Camera is Michelle, who is our intern, busily working on the color of the book as well.

It’s funny how camera shy the Craigmore Creations team is, seeing as they are all quite photogenic people.

I’m really thankful for our intern, Michelle. It’s mighty kind of her to volunteer her time to help us move along on the project. She is saving Erica many hours of work in the process of coloring and has been fun to have around the office as well.

Chris is finishing the final pages of ink. He’s working hard at times and hardly working at others…but his hard work makes up for the rest and he’s well ahead of schedule to complete the first book.

I’m writing the second book. This time around, I’m a lot better versed in “Keynote” and I have been laying the foundation for the story frame by frame with many, many pictures from the research inserted into the text to allow an easy flow from the words to the frames of the next graphic novel.

Last week we found out Spielberg may produce a prime time television show called “Terra Nova” about a time traveling family from the future that goes back in time to live amongst the Jurassic period. Seeing as our book is called “Terra Tempo”, I felt a twinge of panic, which has since allayed into a general feeling of encouragement. Dinosaurs will be “in” once again! That fact will only serve to move our next story along the river of popular culture.

Stay tuned, there is always more to come



Back to Work

February 16, 2010

Work!  There’s been a whole bunch of that going on around here.  I was off in San Francisco at the San Francisco Writers Conference talking to agents, meeting other writers, and honing the craft.  Chris and Erica stayed back and were cooking in the art department. We’re cruising along on the completion of this project and we keep tinkering around with the name.  For now, it is Terra Tempo, Book one: Ice Age Cataclysm.

What a whirlwind of time!  I can not believe a year has gone by since Chris was hired on to the project.  Time certainly flies when your having fun…or if you are preparing for Chinese New Year and you have to cut up the noodles:  Time flies when you are halving fun.

The time is drawing near when we can say we are done with the full ink, full color draft of the book.  There are many exciting developments occurring  right now but I’m going to hold off on talking about them until everything solidifies.

Stay tuned,



The Event Horizon

January 19, 2010


We sure hit the ground running in 2010 here at Craigmore Creations. Every day has been full of coloring, inking, researching, and all sorts of busy work.

Our current project, Terra Tempo: The Missoula Flood Story, is in the process of being finished. We are working on more supplemental information that will be at the end of each issue. These supplements will be educational tidbits about the Missoula Floods and the animals of the Ice Age.  These changes will make for more reading for the kids! 

Book two in the Terra Tempo series is well into the research phase. We’ve begun putting together the pieces of a time travel adventure through 600 million years of evolution on the Colorado Plateau. I’m excited to take the story in that direction. The Four Corners region contains some of the most spectacular scenery on the planet and the stories of how the landforms were created are an amazing journey through time and changing climates and habitats.

Chris is excited to be drawing dinosaurs, giant amphibians, and the other amazing animals that have come and gone on the Earth.

We’ve also put an add out for an intern.  Like I said earlier, we are busy around here and it sure would be nice to find a little help.

That’s all for now folks! Stay tuned as we continue working!




December 17, 2009

“Time, time. We Have all the time in the world”–Bretz

Well, we do and we don’t here at Craigmore Creations. We do have all the time in the world to complete our current project, but we don’t have the luxury of slacking off too much and letting time slip away.

Time provides the parameters we work within. We’ve been working hard to complete the revision of the first three chapters and start showing them off to prospective agents, editors, and other interested eyes in 2010.

Can you believe it’s almost 2010? It seems like we’re in the future, at least from my perspective as a child of the 80’s.  2010 was a date in science fiction whene robots would be doing our laundry and space travel would be an everyday occurrence and moon bases would have fast food joints.

Well, at least we have iphones and online maps have reached a new point of sophistication and on account of the internet most every factoid that you would ever want to know is accessible to anyone willing to put in a bit of effort.

2010 will be a big year for Craigmore Creations. It will be the year “Terra Tempo: The Missoula Flood Story” comes out. Where and with who? We don’t know.

The turning point of a decade is a good place to enter into the unknown. What I do know is we have switched some things around here at the home offices in Portland, Oregon.

We work out of a place called The Linus Pauling House. For the past year Erica and I worked out of the main office downstairs. Then the notion came that perhaps we should have Chris working in the house. There was room upstairs for him. The thought had not occurred before because Chris seemed to like working out of his own house perfectly well.

As the winter approached Erica and I pictured Chris working in a cold dark basement  and decided it was probably better for moral if he had a nice well lit office with a view of Hawhthorne to work from. We offered him the blue room.

That notion set another notion into play: the notion that Erica needed more space to work in and that the nook she had been working out of for the last year may be too small and lack a proper view. So I offered her the green room upstairs. It, too has a nice view of Hawthorne and it gets way more light and it has windows that one can stare out at when ones eyes need a break from the computer screen.

Me? I’ve stayed in the main office. It’s a little dark and cavelike, but it’s got my desk and there is no way I’m moving my desk up those stairs to join the others. That and bless them both, they love talk radio and talk radio drives me nuts. So I’m better off down stairs with music or silence and piles of books as I research the next phase of things: Evolution and the Southwest US.

Stay tuned for future developments! Holiday break is rapidly approaching and the three of us are going to various places around North America. We’ll reconvene in January and be on the fast track to finding an agent for this work!

May your personal journey into 2010 be a good one and may the next decade be one of wonder and prosperity!

See you next year,