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A Month of Comic Book Sites – thoughtballoons

All throughout June, I’ll spotlight a different web site about comic books.. Like with the month of independent comics, the month of LGBT comics and last month’s month of webcomics, I figure I will let you comic book site owners out there suggest your comic book web site for spotlight during this month. So if you want me to spotlight your comic book site, drop me a line at bcronin@comicbookresources.com! Since obviously I don’t have any suggestions sent in just yet, today I’ll spotlight a site co-run by the fellow who suggested this for a theme, Ryan K. Lindsay!

thoughtballoons is a group website where each week the group chooses a different comic book character. Then all throughout that seven-day week, they each write a one-page script (no more than one page) featuring that character (of course, not all of the group always participates).

The group of “tenured” writers at thoughtballoons is currently as follows:

Ben Rosenthal, Danial Carroll, Grant McLaughlin, Matt Duarte, Max Barnard, Mk Stangeland, Jr, Rol Hirst, Ryan K Lindsay and Simon McDonald

If you wish to become a tenured writer, as well, simply make sure to do a thoughtful critique in the comments section of each posted script as well as share your own script in the post where they announce that week’s featured character (each tenured writer takes a turn picking the featured character – the posts are titled “Why ____?”). If you keep up doing quality writing (both critiquing and script-writing), they’ll almost certainly add you to the roster of “tenured writers.”

It is a fun site and it is an interesting challenge to see the members of the site try to write some awfully diverse characters (and some pretty awful characters period, like Omega Red Week).

Since Ryan is the main reason I’m featuring this particular site, let me show you his contribution for Power Man and Iron Fist week (back in February):

Power Man & Iron Fist – Run Interference – Ryan K Lindsay

1. Danny Rand’s fist knocks on a door.
Caption (Misty): I need you to run distraction.
Caption (Cage): Oh, no, not like last time.
Caption: A Hallowe’en not long enough ago.

2. Some mob goon opens the door.
Goon: Who’re you s’posed to be? Ain’t no candy here.

3. A large splash in the middle of the page cut into two panels. This panel shows Danny Rand dressed in Luke Cage’s gear: silk shirt opened to the waist, chain belt, tiara on the head. The clothes even look just a little too big for Rand. He stands with a mighty chi fist held aloft proudly.
Rand: I am the mighty Power Fist!
Goon (op): What that make you, tough guy?

4. Luke Cage stands, not so proud, in Rand’s yellow mask and massive yellow-collared outfit.
Cage: Uh…Iron…Man.
Cage (wh): No, wait, that ain’t right.

5. Rand laughs heartily in his costume, hands on his hips, head thrown back.
Rand: Nevermind. Our friend round back has already liberated your sweat shop dogs as you stood here.
Cage: Oh, yeah!

6. Cage launches a kick up into the mob goon but he’s no martial artist so his leg only reaches the goon’s low chest for a crushing blow forcing him out of the panel. Oh, and the pants are so tight and short they look like bike shorts.
Cage: Sweet Christmas…

7. Cage is doubled over with discomfort. Rand is popping his collar.
Cage: …these pants aren’t built for fighting.
Cage: And you left me with Iron Man?
Rand: You’d rather be Fist Man?

The site has been up for a little over a year now, so there’s a lot of fun reading for you to check out. You can find the site here.

3 Comments

Wow, the sample from Lindsay was terrific. I know it’s not the purpose of the exercise, but I’d hire the shit out of that guy if I was an editor at Marvel.

Thanks for the write up, Brian! We love our little community, and we appreciate any press we get.

Man, my net was down so didn’t get to spread this article far and wide. I’ll rectify that, soon.

Brian, thanks for the plug. I look forward to seeing the other sites throughout this month. Is there a reason you chose that script out of my 52 to showcase? I find it always makes me laugh but I’m the author, I think everything I write it awesome.

@Cass – thanks a bunch. I’m really flattered by your comment. I’d love it if Marvel asked for some samples, but I doubt that’ll happen through the site. They don’t read unsolicited material, so I guess the site remains just for fun. I hope you’ve visited the site and checked out some of the scripts. The other tenures are all super talented and we’re in the middle of X-Men: First Class week. I did a 60’s introspection about group dynamics and hearts.

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