Sunday, March 31, 2013

Chapter 5 - Call of the Worm Mountain

I proudly present Chapter 5 of the Wormworld Saga Digital Graphic Novel!

Go read it at!

My first thought before the writing of Chapter 5 was "how am I ever going to fill a complete chapter with the few things that happen in this part of the story?" All I had in mind when I started to work on Chapter 5 was that we would have to see the Great Celebration and that Jonas and Raya would have to travel to the Worm Mountain. I already juggled all the stuff in my mind that would happen in chapter 6, 7 and 8 but chapter 5 was quite an empty thing for me. But then I started to realize that Jonas must have been in a horrible mental condition after the revelations of Chapter 4 and that I would have to give him a chance to express his feelings. And as I started to write the dialogs between him and Raya I found out how much there was to talk about between the two. In the end I even had to hold myself back because the chapter grew and grew before my eyes and without anticipating it, Chapter 5 became the longest chapter of all so far. I finished my work on it with the good feeling that Jonas and Raya are on the same page now and that they are prepared for the adventure that they are facing. 

There's also progress on my personal adventure as a graphic novel author. It's still a struggle to make a living from something that you're basically giving away for free. Fortunately there's a growing group of fine people that supports the Wormworld Saga and with their help my wife and I were able to fund the development of The Wormworld Shop, which is also officially launched today. We invite you to visit the shop and see if you find something that you like. We invested a lot of time and effort into the development of the products and tried to price them fairly. We're running the shop on ourselves without any middlemen so every sale will directly support the Wormworld Saga 100%. On a sidenote: customers from outside the European Union save 19% on every order because in these cases we're not accounting for VAT. 

You might also have noticed that I've made significant changes to the website. My impression was that the website really got clutteres with all the text and flag icons and I changed the structure so that the chapter icons would be in focus again without anything distracting from it. I'd love to hear feedback from you. There's another important update planned for the next few weeks (something very cool indeed!) and so I would be able to take your feedback into account and tweek everything for the next update.

Alright, after the chapter release is before the chapter release! I'm hoping that you're also excited about the upcoming Chapter 6. I will start working on it as soon as possible.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Chapter 5, Final Artwork Completed!

I've just finished illustrating the final artwork of Chapter 5!

I can't really describe how I feel now. It's always such a weird feeling when there is no next panel to work on. For the last 3 months I've worked through the seemingly endless list of panels. This chapter was HUGE! You can see in the illustration above that it's by far the longest chapter of all. And I painted in in a higher resolution than the other ones (because of some HD goodness that's going to happen in the near future). And the illustration above does not even show the full height of the chapter because just before the last milestone I added 4 extra panels that I felt were neccessary. The interesting thing is that, judged by the working hours, this chapter wasn't much more work than Chapter 3. I worked  332 hours on the final artwork of Chapter 5 and  305 hours on the final artwork of chapter 3. That can mean only one thing - I've gotten faster!

Ok, there's still some stuff to do now which will keep me busy all week. The layout has to be done, the extra content for the app and a substantial website update has to be prepared. Yes, the look of the website will change considerably. I've got to do something against the clutter and visual noise that has built up there. and I've got to paint the cover illustration of course. But everything is under control now and I can savely commit to a final release date:

Chapter 5 will be released on March 31st at 10:00pm German time.

I thought it was a nice idea to set the launch date on Easter Sunday. It's a little bit like the Christmas launches that we had with Chapter 1 and 2. I soon will install a countdown on the website so that you can easily see when the time has come no matter in which timezone you are.

And I've got another announcement to make. Remember the kickstarter campaign that we launched with Chapter 4 last year in August? My wife and I have finished our work on the webshop that we funded through that and together with Chapter 5 we will finally launch The Wormworld Shop!

Now, that's going to be exciting. I really can't wait to get all this stuff online.

And although there normally are no preview images on the last milestone update, I've got a little something for you. The panel contains spoilers so I can only show you a slice of it.

Sunset at the River of Life

See you in a few days!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Chapter 5, Milestone 4 reached!

Today I've reached the 80% mark of the Chapter 5 final artwork production. I feel happy to have reached that mark and I'm looking forward to the last 20% which will include some very challenging artwork for me. I'm super pumped about finishing this chapter now! The editing process for the German and English version is nearly finished and I've already done some important steps towards a new website design for At the side, my wife, my brother in law and I are busy doing the finishing touches on the new Wormworld Shop which we now plan to launch together with Chapter 5. There's a release date forming which I can't announce officially yet (there are still some uncertainties about it) but currently it's pretty save to say that we will see the release of everything this month. It's about time!

And here's the preview artwork of this milestone:

As you can see, our adventurers make camp and, sitting at the sunstone bowl, they find some time to talk. I always love these "campfire talks" in adventure stories. They give the characters great opportunites to express their believes and mental conditions (remember the campfire scene of "Indiana Jonas and the Temple of Doom"?). And there's a LOT for Jonas and Raya to talk about after everything that happend in Chapter 4. As a positive side effect, this milestone was about 20 hours less work than the preceding ones because in dialog scenes I can reuse a lot of artwork in the backgrounds as the camera switches back and forth between the characters.

Well, it looks like the next milestone update will happen at the finish line. Can't wait to reach that!