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Sunday, 23 April 2017

The Decision And Why. It Needs Explaining.


 I apologise for the ramble, though. I did say I would be open and honest about publishing so...

Firstly, I will make it clear that my severe financial problems have not gone away. They are here and I face them every day.  Nothing has changed there.

What has changed I will explain. I had a very long conversation and discussion with Frank Barrell on Friday and went over why I had made serious decisions lately regarding publishing.

All the lack of sales print outs from the online store were laid out. In fact, every printout covering 2010-2017 was laid out.

I will paraphrase Frank’s points.

I started publishing in 1984 though I was involved in printing in the 1970s and had even put together a school magazine (the story of that and why it was banned as well as my selling copies of Oz magazine can be found in my QRD interview).

1. When the school mag was banned did I give up and just say “well that’s it then”?

2. When I worked with small and later larger US Independent publishers and got ripped off or messed about did I quit?

3. When I invested more than a month tailoring Heroes Of India for Diamond Comics in India –almost 50 pages of art, colour samplers and covers- and they decided to drop the idea without telling me…the same thing another Indian publisher later did…did I quit?

4. When I put in weeks of work drawing horror/ghost stories and later, at the suggestion of a senior editor, put together a D-Gruppe sampler issue for Bastei Verlag who were then taken over by Egmont and all work in progress dropped without telling creators, did I quit?

5. Did I quit over the constant, daily, troll emails as well as lies these same people put on UK comic forums from 1999-2016?

6. When Fleetway cancelled projects I worked hard on and then never paid me the £5,00+ it owed me for scripts, did I quit?  When the two editors at Egmont did the same thing did I quit?

7. Marvel UK-same thing. Did I quit? (no mention was made of me holding a Marvel editor out of the window. Good)

8. Did I quit when the two best selling adult graphic novels I wrote were allowed (the publisher never even attempted to step in) to be illegally downloaded millions of times?

9. Did I quit when one artist after another who I had helped get into comics (when I was a creators representative) cold shouldered me?

10. When a lawyer from Defiant Comics threatened to sue me because my Black Tower logo (used since the 1970s) was similar to their logo (1993) did I just back down and quit or did I tell him I looked forward to seeing him in court and to **** off?   The answer to that is obvious.

11. When an idiot at IPC Media and their legal department threatening the full weight of Warner (who owned IPC then) if I did not stop using my own characters (seriously) and did not pay for using characters in Looking Glass, which was a project submitted to IPC a few years before, did I back off and quit? (same as with Defiant but I was on good terms with management at IPC and later Warner told me they had no idea any of this had been going on)

12. Did I back off and quite when a number of other such incidents occurred (I am not giving details here because the people involved are either no longer here (alive) or nothing to do with the companies today)?

At this point I have to say that points 13-20 involved personal events so I won’t go into those.

The obvious answer was “No” to each point. 

So when I asked what the point was I was asked “Why are you being a ****** quitter now?”

Bit rude, but….

Yes, I took the point that I have been without money before.  Yes, in the 1980s/early 1990s I did often go 4-6 days without food (note to youngsters: in those circumstances tomato ketchup in hot water tastes fine. I also lived on one cabbage for a week. Drink plenty of fluids and when you get food do NOT eat like crazy!! Small amounts only to start).

It was pointed out that with over 90 books over 9 pages on the online store it was stupid to just close it down.  There were also 10 other books prepared waiting publication.  And hundreds of pages of The Green Skies so was I seriously going to dump all that?

Frank then pointed out that Comic Bits gets thousands of views per day and has a truly world wide audience –more countries from Africa recently appearing in the stats, too.

I pointed out I still review books and the counter point was that “reviewing does not earn you money!”

I pointed out that a lot of genres were covered by Black Tower and these were in comics, comic albums and graphic novels –excluding the prose books.  Artists had turned in fantastic work but showing that on CBO had not resulted in sales –and I was told quitting meant those creators were being let down.

I pointed to the lack of sales and a few other things but the response was that I had never quit before despite major problems so why was I quitting now? 

Paraphrasing again: “You are too ***** stubborn to quit.  You know that once this rough patch is over you’ll be like an express train again.  You think about it. Can you live with having quit?”

I get the point.  But, for the foreseeable future, what?   Yes, I will continue reviewing books as they arrive but beyond that--?

I was told that I needed to keep the idea of one day comic marts in Bristol even if not before 2018.  Again, depending on how many people want to book tables to just sell comics because last time I mentioned this I got no real interest.

The look and design of the Black Tower comics and books?  No. The covers have nothing wrong with them and the quality of contents and printing are excellent. Black and white is the best and affordable option –one of the books at the store is £5,75 in black and white. In colour that same book would cost £12.00+ (and remember I only get a small percentage since the printer and Print On Demand company take sizeable cuts –I have no real say in pricing).

The quality of the books cannot be improved upon.  Maybe Mr Dilworth can think of a new jazzed up Black Tower log?

Apart from that I can only wait and see. Flow through the rough waters.


But I really do not like to quit.  I have seen so many small publishers vanish or meet their ends in the last two years. I’m not sure how but I’ll dig my feet in. I guess at my funeral someone is going to say “He was a stubborn sod. Never knew when to quit!” Until then I will be that old bearded man people point out but hope I never notice.


Tuesday, 28 February 2017

We Got Books. You Ought To Try One -VERY Marzipanish!

auto post 28-02-2017

Mystery Canids, Chupacabra, Strange Sea Creatures, UFOs and much MUCH More!



The Red Paper: Foxes, Coyotes, Jackals, Arctic Foxes and Wolves in the UK

 One for those interested in Wildlife -or cryptozoology!
  
The Red Paper:CANINES vol.1
 Terry Hooper
The Red Paper: Canids
Paperback, 
A4 
(21 x 30cms)
202 Pages 
Photographs, illustrations and maps

By the 1700s the British fox was on the verge of extinction and about to follow the bear and wolf having been hunted for sport for centuries.  The answer was to import thousands of foxes per year for sport. But foxes kept dying out so jackals were tried. Some were caught, some escaped. Even wolves and coyote were released for hunting and "country folk" were very far from "happy" -some even threatening local hunts -one intending to release a wolf for a hunt- with legal and other consequences. The summation of over 40 years research by the noted naturalist and former UK police forces exotic wildlife consultant reveals the damnable lie of "pest control" hunting but also reveals the cruelty the animals were subject to and how private menageries as well as travelling shows. Private menageries, or single exotic "pets" as well as travelling shows helped provide the British and Irish countryside with some incredible events such as the 1905 "vampiric" sheep killer of Badminton, the mystery hounds of Cavan and Coyotes of Epping Forest.

The Girt Dog of Ennerdale is also dealt with in detail -was it a tiger? A Tasmania Thylacine? This book gives the exact facts and details for the first time. Up-dated 2013 edition includes a section on sarcoptic mange in foxes and treatment plus a list of wildlife sanctuaries and rescue centres in the UK.
                    *****************

Some Things Strange & Sinister (2013 -up-dated)


Some Things Strange & Sinister
A4 Format
B&W
Paperback
358 pages
Heavily illustrated
£20.00


After more than 40 years as an investigator and more than fifty as a naturalist,the author has opened some of the many files he has accumulated dealing with such things as..  

The Terrifying Events At The Lamb Inn, The Ghosts Of All Saints Church, Dead Aquatic Creatures of Canvey Island, captured bigfoot like creatures in India -all exclusively presented for the first time and with new added research previously unseen.  

PLUS a vastly expanded section on Spring-heeled Jack!  Photographs, maps, line drawings and up-dated to make 358 pages looking at Things truly Strange and Sinister.  

Cryptozoologist,Ghost Hunter,Ufologist or Fortean:this book has something for everyone -including the just plain inquisitive!   

ContentsForeword by Travis L. Whitehurst
Introduction        de occultis non judicat ecclesia                                                                            
The Bristol Rocking Horse        
The Terrifying Events At The Lamb Inn        
The Coonian Ghost        
The Ghosts Of All Saints Church        
His Luminous Chamber        
The Late Reverend Dr. Blomberg        
And More Ghost Stories        
The Thomas B. Cumpston Case        
The Chupacabra        
The Strange Case Of The Gotherington Gargoyle        
What’s Tall,Hairy And Vanishes?        
Mystery Beasts Of Ireland        
The Creature Of The Dump        
The Strange Creature Of Repton Woods        
The Bizarre Legends,Crimes And Truth About Spring Heeled Jack        
The Black Beast Of Darmstadt        
The Nameless Thing Of Berkley Square        
The Terrifying Case Of The U.S. Naval Transport        
The Case Of The Ghost Lear Jet        
Ghost Planes,Crashes And Dead Aquatic Creatures        
The Mitchison Loch Ness Monster Video        
From The Deep Below To The Air Above –USOs        
Aerial Encounters Over Austria        
A Crashed UFO In 1790?        
Angel Hair        
Quimper-Corentin:Where “Thunder Fell”        
Strange Aliens From Space        
The Llandrillo ‘Saucer’ And Other Crash Retrievals        
Transient Lunar Phenomena,Alien Structures And Moon Vegetation        
Whiddon Down-Saint-Jean-du-Guard:Impossible Correlations?        
The Venezuelan HorrorA Final Word.





Alleged piece of crashed UFO from Berwyn Mountains, Wales.
                                                               **************

 Some More Things Strange & Sinister 



Some More Things Strange & Sinister

Terry Hooper-Scharf
Paperback,
A4
327 Pages 
Heavily illustrated
£20.00
http://www.lulu.com/shop/terry-hooper-scharf/some-more-things-strange-sinister/paperback/product-18763730.html

Follow-up to Some Things Strange & Sinister. For those interested in Ufology, cryptozoology, hominology, unusual natural history, ghosts and mysteries in general. The secret history of gorillas in the UK -before they were officially  'discovered'. 

The history of  the Wild men of Europe, the UK and US: something that in the 1800s become very "pop culture"  Very pop culture and totally forgotten today! Hominology. Sasquatch and Bigfoot -is there evidence for their existence?  

No sitting on the fence here -the Patterson-Gimlin film is looked at as well as other evidence.  The Author's conclusions? 

You might be surprised. Giant snakes. Amazons. The Giant serpent of Carthage. The Girt Dog of Ennerdale -another big cult 'creature' amongst paranormal and cryptozoological circles. The Beast of Gevaudan -what was it and were there really descendents of the creature in the 19th century -one of which was actually brought to London?   Believe it or not more than one incident of historical crocodiles cases in the UK.  In fact, far more than even the Author had thought . And, after more than a century of claims by 'researchers' that it no longer exists: The Silent City of Alaska and the near legendary 'lost' photograph taken of it.

 This and much more. Updated with extra pages and photographs.
                  *********************


Pursuing The Strange And Weird -A Naturalist's Viewpoint (2014 up-date)



Pursuing The Strange & Weird:A Naturalists Viewpoint


Terry Hooper-Scharf
Paperback,
A4
249 Pages
£20.00

 http://www.lulu.com/shop/terry-hooper-scharf/pursuing-the-strange-weirda-naturalists-viewpoint/paperback/product-21307125.html


UP DATE -From Dead Aquatic (Humanoid) Creatures, the giant squid and yet undiscovered sea creatures; submarine and ships crews encountering true leviathans.


There is a fully expanded section which also refers to the so-called ‘Ningen’ sightings and video footage.

Extinct animals at sea that have been re-discovered. The subject of Sasquatch and other mystery Hominids around the world is dealt with including a look at the “Sasquatch-killer”, Justin Smeja.

Dr. Bryan Sykes and his DNA test results for TVs The Bigfoot Files as well as the controversial Erickson Project and Dr. Melba Ketchum’s Even more controversial Sasquatch DNA test results.

Also included are two early French UFO entity cases that still baffle. Ghosts, strange creatures and the Star-Child hoax. All dealt with by the naturalist and pursuer of the strange and weird
                *******************

  The Bizarre Legends, Crimes And Truth About Spring Heeled Jack (2014


The Truth About Spring-Heeled Jack  
Terry Hooper-Scharf
Paperback, 
53 Pages  
Dimensions (centimetres) 20.98 wide x 29.69 tall  (A4)
fully illustrated and referenced
£10.00http://www.lulu.com/shop/terry-hooper-scharf/the-truth-about-spring-heeled-jack/paperback/product-21259526.html

The terror and mystery created by “Jack The Ripper” has been the subject of countless books, magazine articles as well as movies and TV documentaries. Ask anyone if they have ever heard of Jack The Ripper and it is doubtful anyone would respond with a “no idea.”  

By that same token, ask people who “Spring-heeled Jack” was and you would be lucky to find anyone who had ever heard of him.  

Spring-heeled Jack was the subject (loosely) of a film The Curse of the Wraydons (1946) and Dominic Keating also appeared as Spring Heeled Jack in the 2010 film Sherlock Holmes by The Asylum film company. The character has also featured in both American and British comic books and a number of books, for both children and adults.  

But the fact that the Springald held the country –not just London– in a grip of terror much longer that the Ripper did is all but forgotten except for some half-truths and fanciful theories.  

Now be prepared to read the full story of Spring Heeled Jack