In Person and Offline

Worlds Apart’s launch event was heartfelt, hilarious and simply wonderful.

The turn-out was fantastic – probably the best I’ve ever had for a launch, actually. It was great to see so many friends and family, and even some new faces too. These things always live or die largely by the crowd, so I can’t stress enough how everyone who joined us genuinely made the evening even better than we could’ve imagined.

Jannah and I talked about our processes and, yeah, we had more than a few laughs – but we also spoke about our own experiences with mental health. Jannah was open and honest, which is an incredibly brave thing for anyone to do, but more so for someone speaking at their first ever launch event.

She had an amazing time though, throughout the event – and I’m so glad. I’ve said it before and I’ll keep saying it: collaborating with her was such a joy. I’m definitely gonna work with her again, as soon as we figure out the right project.

Now that Worlds Apart has launched, I’m taking a break from social media and sticking to this blog. I’ll be back on all the usual platforms to promote Work-Life Balance, Internal Damnation and an as-yet-unannounced project later this year, but after that, I’ll be leaving all of them for good.

Social media’s never really moved the needle all that much, when it comes to selling my stuff. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve made some lovely friends via Twitter (and LiveJournal and Tumblr back in the day). However, I mostly jumped aboard – and stayed aboard – social media to get my books and comics out there. If that’s not happening, then it’s just a distraction – and one that’s not been particularly healthy.

I’ve taken extended breaks from social media before and they’ve always made me feel revitalised and more balanced, mentally. As those breaks grew longer and longer, it became clear that cutting it out of my life can only be a good thing.

Which means that some of the stuff that I used to talk about on Twitter and the rest, I’ll be talking about here instead – like what I’ve been reading or watching recently.

I’m currently making my way through Richard Stark’s Parker novels. I’m up to the The Outfit, which, like its predecessors, is carried by Stark’s easy prose and dry wit. Now, sure, neither this book nor The Man with the Getaway Face have managed to top The Hunter, but they’ve both been so much fun. I always ended up devouring way more pages than I expected every time I picked them up.

I’ll be jumping into Darwyn Cooke’s adaptations of the Parker novels too, since I got the two Martini Editions for myself as an early birthday present. A huge reason I went for these oversized collections is the new story by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips in the second volume, which of course is my segue to talk about their latest Reckless book, The Ghost in You, with Jacob Phillips on colours.

Like the Parker novels, every edition of this series is a page-turner. Unlike the Parker books, I feel like, for those first three books, I enjoyed each new edition even more than the last. The Ghost in You kinda breaks that streak a little. The third book, Destroy All Monsters, remains my favourite of the lot, but that’s no slight to this volume, which is still so damn excellent.

I’m clearly in a bit of a crime fiction phase, since the three shows I’m streaming the most right now are the original Cowboy Bebop, the new season of Better Call Saul, and Barry, which I’ve just started. I’ve seen Bebop before and I’ve been following Saul religiously, but Barry’s proven to be a lovely surprise. I’ve always been a sucker for hitman stories and Bill Hader’s putting on a hell of a performance. I just finished season one’s seventh episode, which I feel is where the show really levelled up.

I also caught Edgar Wright’s The Sparks Brothers, which was as much a joyous celebration of the band as it was a chronicle of their lives and career. Sparks has definitely risen to the top spot of my vinyls-to-get list, particularly Lil’ Beethoven, mostly because of My Baby’s Taking Me Home.

Quite the lengthy post, I know. Let’s close things out though, by circling back to Worlds Apart – which, if you haven’t already, you can still get from Difference Engine. (We’ve got a few other retail partners, but I’ll save that for another time.)

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