Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Perfect Stocking Stuffer...


This Wednesday (December 16th), my latest Ninja Turtles issue hits stands in the form of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: New Animated Adventures # 18. My tale in this particular issue is called "Secret Santa," and is drawn by Paulina Ganucheau with colors by Heather Breckel and letters by Shawn Lee.

Find out what happens when Michelangelo is unlucky enough to draw Raphael's name during their Secret Santa gift exchange. The issue also features the second half of a tale by writer Landry Q. Walker and artists Dario Brizuela, as well as another great Dario crafted cover. There's also a really cool variant subscription cover floating around out there by Jeffrey Cruz. You can check out a free preview of Walker and Brizuela's tale here.

As an extra bonus, here's the cover to the very first holiday Ninja Turtles story, the memorable "Michaelangelo" Micro Series special from 1985 by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird. Happy holidays!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Turtles go "Walkabout"...


Hitting stores this week is Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: New Animated Adventures #16. I've written the lead story in this issue which features art by Chad Thomas, and Paul Allor tackled the second tale, with art by Marcelo Ferreira. This story was a long time in the making, as we had to keep tweaking it to keep up with recent events in the show, but I'm really happy with the result.

You can check out a free 5-page preview of the issue here. But you'll have the buy the comic if you want to see just where Master Splinter disappears to on his mysterious yearly "walkabouts." Also, you get to learn a bit about Michelangelo's "sweet ninja skills." And I think that's a life lesson we can all learn from.

Issue # 16's Variant Cover.

The Rasp of Con...

Just got back from New York Comic Con yesterday, and I wanted to send out a quick thank you to all the fans who came out to see me at the DK and the Insight Editions booths. I had a great time meeting all of you, as well as catching up with a lot of old friends. Just like last year, my voice gave out Thursday night, so thanks for straining to hear my hoarse rasp.

Looking forward to the 2015 show. Maybe I should stock up now on hot tea and honey...

Monday, October 6, 2014

New York Comic Con 2014...


This Thursday, I'll be arriving in New York City for the annual Comic Con held at the Jacob Javits Center. If you're up for braving the crowds at the show, here's my signing schedule this year:

Thursday, October 9th from 5-6 p.m.: DK Publishing booth (# 1831)

Friday, October 10th from 5-6 p.m.: DK Publishing booth (# 1831)

Saturday, October 11th from 3-4 p.m.: Insight Editions booth (# 1869)


At the DK booth, I'll be signing the newly released Batman: A Visual History, DC Comics: A Visual History (an updated edition of DC Comics Year by Year: A Visual Chronicle), and whatever other titles of mine they happen to have in stock at the time.


At the Insight Editions booth, I'll be signing advance copies of an advice book from the mind of the Clown Prince of Crime itself, The World According to The Joker. (More about that book in a later posting). I'll also be signing my other new title from that publisher, The World According to Wolverine.

As with every appearance I do, I'm always happy to sign any of my older books or comics that you bring from home, or am up for just chatting all things comics, so be sure to stop by and say hello.


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Batman: A Visual History...




I think I've been training for this book since the 5th grade. Out today is Batman: A Visual History, a complete month-by-month history of the Dark Knight Detective from 1939 until 2014. This project was a huge labor of love for me, and a chance to dig into the character's background more than I ever have before. I even learned a few things along the way. Your life just cannot be considered complete until you discover the existence of the Bat-Train and characters like Ally Babble.

I first started working on this format of book for DK Publishing with Marvel Year by Year, originally titled The Marvel Chronicle. That book took four of us to write. Then came the DC edition, DC Comics Year by Year, and five of us handled the writing and research on that particular book. As a big fan of Spidey, when I had the chance to write half of the Spider-Man Chronicle alongside the talented Alan Cowsill, I jumped at it. But when Batman came around, things were different. This was the character that first truly brought me into the world of comic books. I had to try to write the whole thing.

I say try, as there were a few deadline alterations, and suddenly, I just couldn't fit the entire book into my schedule. Luckily, Matt Forbeck stepped up and turned in the great 1960s chapter, helping get the book finished in time.

If you're a Batman fan, casual or diehard, this book is for you. I included everything that was fit to print about the Caped Crusader, from little known gems like Bob Kane's "biographical" comic in Real Fact Comics # 5 (November/December 1946) to large modern events like the "Hush" storyline.

You can buy the book here, or come see me at the New York Comic Con where I'll have plenty on hand at the DK Publishing booth. More details on that to come next week. In the meantime, here's a sneak a peak at a few of the book's interior pages:





Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Stepping Out...



Just got home to find these guys waiting for me. You can pick up your copy of my newest Looney Tunes issue (# 221) on October 1st. Find out what happens when Wile E. Coyote realizes he's living inside a comic book. 

Psst... high jinks. The answer is high jinks.

Monday, September 15, 2014

ACE...


This Saturday (September 20th), come join me at ACE, the Asheville Comic Expo. It's a great little one-day show that runs from 11am to 6pm. If you go, be sure to stop by my table (G12) and flip through some of my latest books and comics.

Hope to see you at the show!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Four Scoops of Awesome...


This Wednesday, be sure to check out my first Ninja Turtles comic. While this initial story is only a four-page tale, Marcelo Ferreira and I manage to pack in plenty of action featuring everyone's favorite feline made purely out of a delightful frozen dessert, Ice Cream Kitty. You can read a free preview of Landry Q. Walker and Dario Brizuela's lead story here.

Check out those variants! You need all of them!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Turtles and Tunes...

It's been a busy few days here in Asheville. When not working on my newest book, a hardcover guide from DK Publishing for the Batman Arkham games (more on that in a later post), I've been putting the finishing touches on my latest script for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: New Animated Adventures.


The story for this issue involves the Turtles following Master Splinter on his mysterious annual "Walkabout," and is being drawn as we speak by Chad Thomas. Look for this issue (# 16) in comic shops this October.


Also today, I received the lettered and colored files for my newest Looney Tunes issue. Titled "Stepping Out," the story features Wile E. Coyote coming to the realization that he actually exists in a comic book. Drawn by Walter Carzon, the issue (# 221) also hits stands this October.


Of course, the main event this week in the Manning household was my oldest daughter's first day of preschool. From what I can gather, she's spent her time there playing Super Kitty and developing some sort of medicine for invisible puppies. We obviously share an affinity for weighty subject matter...



Thursday, July 24, 2014

Signing at the Asheville Mall Barnes and Noble...




On Saturday, August 2nd at 3:00 pm, I'll be signing books at the Barnes and Noble at the Asheville Mall for their special Marvel Day. They'll have copies of my Marvel: Year by Year book on hand, as well as many of my other books, including some of my young reader Batman books from Stone Arch and my graphic novel adaptation of Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves. There's also a costume and trivia contest happening earlier in the day.

For more details, you can check out Barnes and Noble's site here.

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles...

When I first started writing comics, there were four established properties I wanted to work on to appease my inner kid. As a child of the 80s and 90s, I grew up on a steady diet of Batman, Spider-Man, ThunderCats, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Over the years, I've had the chance to write both Batman and Spidey, and now I can officially cross another comic off Childhood Matt's To-Do List.

Coming out this September is my first story for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, a back-up tale in issue # 15 of the New Animated Adventures title. It stars Ice Cream Kitty, a mutant cat made up entirely of Ice Cream. Obviously, this is very, very serious stuff here.

Here's an image of the cover:


I'll have some more Turtles-related news to post in the near future, but in the meantime, someone offer me a ThunderCats job already. Childhood Matt won't stop talking about it.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Heroes Con...


For anyone around the Charlotte area this weekend (June 20-22nd), I'll be a guest at Heroes Con. This is my first year at the show, and I've heard nothing but great things. I'll be bringing copies of The Superman Files, Beware the Batman, and plenty of my other past projects, so be sure to stop by and say hello. I'm at table AA-1114.

For more info, visit the Heroes Convention website here. See you at the show!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Meanwhile in Gotham City...


It's Batman's 75th anniversary, and to celebrate, DC Comics is releasing plenty of new projects to pay tribute to the legendary Dark Knight Detective. I've been lucky enough to work on quite a few Batman-related books recently, most of which are now up for pre-order. So if you're a fan of the Caped Crusader, here are a couple things to keep an eye out for:

First up is the project that's been occupying the bulk of my time since I finished writing The Superman Files for Andrews McMeel Publishing. It's a massive 352-page hardcover history of the Dark Knight from DK Publishing entitled Batman Year by Year: A Visual Chronicle. If the book sounds familiar, it might be because I co-wrote the similar Spider-Man Chronicle a few years ago, and have worked on both DC Comics: Year by Year and Marvel: Year by Year for DK as well.

Batman: Year by Year essentially tells the history of the character, his villains and his supporting cast in a month-by-month format from May of 1939 until the most recent events of this year. It was quite an intense project, but a labor of love for a lifelong Batman fan like myself. The book includes additional writing by Matt Forbeck (who wrote about the 1960s), and an introduction by one of my childhood heroes, Frank Miller. It's available on September 15th, but you can preorder it now on Amazon. I'll post a picture as soon as the cover art is available.


Next is The World According to the Joker from Insight Editions. I wrote this 64-page hardcover entirely in the voice of the Joker, as a sort of book of wisdom from the absolute worst person in the world to take advice from. I've always enjoyed writing the Joker, and this project was a great chance to see the world through his twisted eyes. It includes plenty of fun removable items and lots of great new illustrations. Look for it on October 7th.

Also from Insight Editions are the Batman Hardcover Ruled Journal and The Joker Hardcover Ruled Journal. These mostly blank journals include a story handwritten by each book's title character. The idea is for Batman and the Joker to have each been writing a journal entry when their books are misplaced and wind up in the reader's hands. These were extremely fun little stories to write, and I'm very happy with the result. I'll be sure to post pictures of the covers for these as we get closer to their release date of September 9th.

On August 1st, make sure to check out Catwoman's Nine Lives, my newest chapter book in Stone Arch Book's selection of DC Comics readers. Set in the world of Batman: The Animated Series, it's a fun little caper story that's my seventh contribution to this great line for young readers. I'll post more about this book when it's released.


And finally, while not available for pre-order quite yet, my two issues of Beware the Batman are being collected into a trade paperback from DC Comics due to hit stores on January 27, 2015. This collection includes all six issues of the series, featuring stories also written by Ivan Cohen, Scott Beatty, and the legendary creator of Katana, Mike W. Barr. It features art by Luciano Vecchio and Dario Brizuela. You can find out a bit more about the book here, as well as a preview of my point of view story from issue # 6.

Be sure to be the first kid on your block to collect all six books. Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Scooby-Doo and the Island of Misfit Parents...


Last week I was in New York City attending the wedding of my old friend Mike Zagari to his new wife (and fellow comic book enthusiast) Janna O'Shea, so I didn't get a chance to post about my newest comic to hit the stands. That issue is Scooby-Doo!: Where Are You? # 44, an issue set on a small island named Fripp in South Carolina that is seemingly haunted by the legendary creatures known as Jabberwockies. (My parents also happen to live on that particular island, but that's a horror story for a different day.)

Each issue of Scooby features two stories, and mine was pencilled by Robert Pope with inks by Scott McRae. The second tale in the issue features the work of longtime DC writer Paul Kupperberg, with pencils by Roberto Barrios and inks by Horacio Ottolini.

With any luck, there should be a copy or two left at your local comic shop or news stand,  so why not see what the ol' Mystery Inc. Gang is up to? (Scooby Snacks sold separately.)

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Beware the Batman # 6...


Out today is Beware the Batman # 6, the final issue of the short-lived tie-in series to the equally short-lived cartoon of the same name. This is my second issue of the series, and the one I was most excited to write, so I'm very happy to have gotten it in under the wire.

This issue also marks the first time a Batman comic has been told entirely from the point of view of a single character. Similar to the perspective you might see if you were playing a first-person shooter video game, this comic puts you in Alfred Pennyworth's shoes as he follows a trail of clues in an attempt to rescue the missing Dark Knight.

I'm very proud of this issue, and I think Luciano Vecchio did an incredible job with a script that was certainly a challenge to draw. Check it out the next time you visit a comic store and see if our little experiment actually worked.

Friday, January 31, 2014

God-in-a-Can




A few years ago, I collaborated with the brilliant M.K. Perker on a short comic called "One Bedroom, Spacious Bath, and God-in-a-Can." Circumstances left the story unpublished in the United States, although it did see print in a comic magazine in Holland and Belgium. It was even adapted into a short film at one point.

Not too long ago, I discovered it on my hard drive and thought it was a shame not to get the comic out where people can read it. I submitted the story to Simon Fraser over at Act-i-Vate Comix, and now they're generously hosting it on their site.

It's a short ten-page comic, and you can read it free from the beginning by clicking here.

Feel free to leave comments either on this site or at Act-i-Vate. I'd love to hear what you guys think.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

A little something for everyone...

I've been a bit swamped with the new book I'm currently writing, so I've fallen behind on posting about some of my other upcoming projects.

Time to fix that:


First up, is Beware the Batman # 6. Sadly, it looks like this might be the final issue of this particular series. With Cartoon Network not currently airing the cartoon, it seems the comic isn't destined to fare much better. Either way, I'm glad I got the chance to get this issue in under the wire.

Shot entirely from Alfred's point of view, similar to a first-person shooter video game, this comic was a very fun experiment that I'm happy to say worked out even better than I expected. I've seen all of Luciano Vecchio's art for the issue, and the POV format combined with his fluid artwork and the energy he adds to every panel really works to heighten the tension. The end result is a comic book truly different from any other Batman issue, and one I'm very proud to have been a part of.

So if you're a Batman fan, or just a fan of unique comics, please do check this issue out when it's released on March 26th.


Next up is my newest book, The World According to Wolverine. Published by Insight Editions, this 64-page volume is written in Wolverine's voice, as if he's advising the next generation of mutants on how to best use their fantastic abilities.

Here's the publisher's synopsis:

In The World According to Wolverine, Marvel Comics’ favorite stoic loner finally opens up on a range of topics that are close to his mutant heart. With helpful tips on everything from clawed combat to outdoor survival and dealing with the agony of adamantium implantation, this book will delight fans who want to learn how to be just like the grizzled hero. Also featuring Logan’s ruminations on an extremely long and checkered life, his global travels, and the art of picking the perfect dive bar, The World According to Wolverine will offer unparalleled insight into one of the most fascinating and mysterious characters in the Marvel Comics universe. The book will also come with a number of removable items, including classified Weapon X paperwork, a report on Wolverine from Charles Xavier’s School for Gifted Mutants, war memorabilia, beer mats from Wolverine’s favorite bars, travel mementos, James Howlett’s birth certificate, and much, much more.

Check your local book store for The World According to Wolverine on April 15th.


Next, is my second magazine for Eaglemoss. This offers a pretty thorough look at Doomsday, the monster that killer Superman, and comes alongside a great collectible chess piece as well. Expect to find it in comic book stores this April, or pre-order it here.



And finally, Scooby-Doo: Where Are You? # 44, from DC Comics. This was my first time writing for the famous Mystery Inc. Gang, and let me tell you, it's near impossible to not hear the Scooby background music when you're trying to script these guys. Here's what DC has to say about the issue:

The gang is trying to take a nice, peaceful vacation at an island resort, but the Jabberwocky infestation at the nature preserve next door isn’t making that easy! Shaggy and Scooby could be scared off by red-eyed monsters with lion-like paws, unless Velma’s keen eye for clues puts an end to the mysterious beasts!

Scooby-Doo: Where Are You? # 44 hits stores on April 9th.

Okay, that's all. Thanks for reading. Now let's all get back to work.