Last post before Japan! 🇯🇵

Good morning readers, today is going to be my last post for this year as I will be hopping on a plane to Japan on Wednesday for nearly 3 months. I wanted to share some updates with you, and inform you all of some upcoming changes and events taking place next year.

First off, my proof reader is seriously behind schedule for the last two volumes of Jinimaru Folklore, and whilst Specimen G-13 is nearly complete, it will not be handed over to my proof reader until they finish what I have already given them. The delays on the last two volumes will cause other books in the Jinimaru series to be delayed. The last volume of Subject 218 will be released as planned as a separate proof reader handles that series.

Next on the list is changes to the website; I installed a security feature to the site which reset all of the username registrations, as it too had been exploited by bots. False registrations have since stopped, so I apologise if your user got deleted in this process, and it is now possible to register again. The subscription feature will return when I give the site a face-lift next year when I get back from Japan. Ah yes, I am redesigning the website layout and graphics to make it more efficient and user friendly. The current layout works well but it isn’t quite clear on where you need to go for artwork Commissions or where to view our bookstore besides on the individual story pages. With the new layout I will also be replacing the artwork for the banner, and inserting more images into the individual pages as well.

Finally, the events; next year I will be attending ComicCon again, but I will be sharing my table with my sister who specialises in photorealistic portraits of celebrities. We have yet to decide if we will be at the Birmingham event in November or if we stick with the London event in October like last time, if we could, we would like to attend two conventions next year. Some more thought on that one, but I can confirm that we will be attending at least one of them.

Thanks again for your continued support and patience. I hope that you will enjoy the new look to the site when I come back, and enjoy the books currently on offer. Remember: epubs are available for all of our work, and cost only £1.99.

Thomas

Just a quick update

Hey all, just posting a little update before I head off to Japan in 2 weeks. Basically, my subscriber feature was being exploited by hackers who tried to plant malicious content on the site (which has now been solved). I advise you to unsubscribe by clicking on the “unsubscribe” link found in the email you received this update on, as I do not know if the hackers obtained any email addresses. After having this site for about 6 years I have never been hacked once, but just one week after ComicCon an attempt gets made. This cannot be a coincidence. The hackers location was approximately in Russia according to my sites firewall, and if an attempt is made again from this location I will be forced to block all access to the site for those in Russia.

I am looking into alternative options for the subscription service, but for the time being I advise you just bookmark the website or follow the Facebook page. I apologise for any inconvenience caused to you all, but I have acted on the hacking attempt as quickly as I could.

Thomas

Comic-con is over!

Well, I am finally back from the convention, and have plenty of artwork to colour in to turn into prints, ready for next year. I want to thank everyone who dropped on by the table over the weekend, to say hi or to buy a book. Next time I will be bringing prints and other goodies, since I now have a better idea of what space I will have to work with. I may even have someone else with me.

In other news; volume 3 and 4 of Jinimaru Folklore are still on the proofing stage, but I have not stopped working whilst they are in a queue. Specimen G-13 is half finished and will soon be joining that queue, and as for volume 3 of Subject 218? That is half way through now as well. Next year will see these two books finished, before the next 4 volumes of Jinimaru Folklore will be worked on. By this time, I should also be settled in the new house, and will be able to make more crafting video tutorials.

I want to thank everyone again who came on by the stand, and I look forward to next years. With new books to show, Artwork and costume parts to sell, and more.

Thomas

QR-Code Replacements

Unfortunately the service we had been offered for the QR Codes was not what it claimed to be (free for small businesses), and the site is now asking me to pay for the continued use of their service. Due to my low budget I had to tell them no, and as a result the previous QR codes no longer work as they deactivated them. I have made some new ones that aren’t quite as pretty, using a REAL free service, but they should still do the job.

To prevent people using the wrong codes I have removed the previous images on the site that displayed them, and have now shared the fixed versions on facebook and tumblr. Sorry about this confusion, but really it was the company’s fault for lying to me in the first place.

Thomas

Another update!

Okay, these two-updates in one day things are not as common as they may look, but one thing that is common is my floppy memory; I completely forgot to share this other piece of artwork I made for the convention table, featuring two QR codes that link to our facebook page and our redbubble store.
As usual, the redbubble page only has a few prints on it, and I only have room to take one print with me to the convention for display purposes. I opted to take the Jinimaru Folklore print featuring all four main characters, plus Specimen G-13. This print sample I am taking has the website url below it, but the ones for sale on redbubble don’t.

Okay, I have some last minute things to do before next week, so this will be the last update until the Thursday evening before the convention next week. See you all soon!

Thomas

More Images!

I have updated a handful of images on the site, namely the old Error Page, and I have a few more lined up for future projects. The error page image now has more than one language on it, since the translator on the site is no good for images. The languages currently on the image are English, French, German, Spanish and Japanese. Sorry that took so long.

Some good news! The last of my book stock has arrived today, and all of them have crystal-clear images with no marks, smudges or odd black spots like I pointed out in my last update. I even got the issue with the wrong spine print sorted out, so it no longer says (B&W) on the spine, however this correction was done at the last minute and some of the spines as a result have the print slightly off-centre. This error only happened on the spines of the guide, and is barely noticeable.
The bags also arrived today and I am very happy with the quality of the print! These will come FREE with all purchases of the Guide, since it’s a huge book, though they will be on sale to those who only wish to buy the smaller books as well. The bags are £1 each, and include a complimentary sticker and business card.

We have just over two weeks before the convention; everything is now printed, stocked and stored ready for the big event. All that’s left is to travel down and get set up. It’s all very exciting, and I hope will be the first of many future conventions I can attend.

Thomas

Table location, and more!

Another update in the same day! What are the odds? Slim, that’s what. Anyway, I received our table location and have started setting up the marketing materials, so first here’s our location!

Okay, it’s not very precise, but the full-size map isn’t available yet. but you get the general idea. I also want to take this chance to share a piece of promotional artwork, which has a QR-code for people to use that takes them directly to the LuLu bookstore. I am travelling with limited stock, so if I sell out of a book you want whilst at the show, don’t worry; all books are available on the LuLu store and at many other online retailers now, so just scan the QR-code, click the link and away you go.
It’s been a rough few years getting everything set up, but it’s all falling into place now. I’m looking forward to seeing you all at the convention!

Thomas

Size Comparison, and me ranting about printers!

Okay, I don’t rant that much, but I still had a few things to say about how inconsistent the printers have been with me lately. I am still working on getting things right with them, but with the service I get (print on demand) this sort of thing is bound to happen. Still, it’s fun to rant about it.

I said I didn’t want to go into much detail about the interior print issues, but for the curious few here’s a bit more ranting…I mean…information, on these issues. Remember; these issues have now been corrected.
Let’s start with a bit of background info; I wasn’t sure what type of paper to use for my books, so I ordered coated paper first. This made the book pages have a glossy texture to them, and makes them look wonderful…however, some pages wound up looking like this:

Now, I wasn’t sure why this happened, so I got in touch with the printer and they said it might have to do with the type of paper I chose, so I decided to order the book with uncoated paper, which worked out cheaper as well, but the issue still remained.


If anything, I thought it looked worse on the matt paper, and the images didn’t look as clear or vibrant. So I ordered another copy in coated paper, and guess what? The issue was gone!

But oh dear, a new problem! All the other books didn’t have alignment issues, but for some reason this one did. I got it fixed in the final version.

So after much hassle, and many headaches, I got the final copies I liked. But as mentioned in the video, the stock still has a fault on the spine of the books. *Sigh* I have fixed it now, so any online purchases won’t get this problem. I hope to have more information before the convention, including the location of our table!

Thomas

Specimen G-13 Update!

It’s not a big update, but since this book is the bad boy I have been working on for goodness knows how many years, it’s an important part of the Jinimaru series and deserves even the slightest shout out for an update. Basically, I have changed the Volume 1 summary, release date and uploaded the front cover artwork. I have had to reschedule the release date since I am moving house, and I will also be away in Japan early next year so I won’t be able to order any proof-copies of the physical print. I will likely release the EPUB before the print version, but again this won’t be until early next year. You can find the artwork for the front cover in both the gallery and on the Jinimaru Novel page. Unlike the other books I have done, this one will have the same FRONT cover art on all volumes, but in different colours. There is unique artwork for each volume on the back of the books.

Just another thing to mention; Volume 3 of Jinimaru Folklore is finished, but I still haven’t received the final draft from my proof-reader yet. Just in case I cannot get it printed in time for the convention, I have ordered one copy that has the first-draft printed inside it, but the cover art and inserts are the same as those found on the final version. It will just be there as a sample, just like the copy of Subject 218 I will be taking as well. Volume 4 is finished too, but I don’t want to take another sample that doesn’t even have the finished draft inside.

Anyway, it’s a short update but it’s something! Hopefully I will have better news in a week or so, as I am chasing my proof-readers, but I also understand that they have their own lives to get on with as well.

Thomas

Colour Print samples have arrived!

I mentioned a while ago about my recent arrangements with a printing service that will allow me to buy, and sell, full-colour prints of my books at a far cheaper price; well I can now tell you that the first samples have arrived! I have noticed some flaws, and have contacted the printers who have been very helpful in getting the prints sorted out to look the best they can, whilst keeping the costs low.

The first samples were printed on coated white paper, this gives it a more glossy texture and is harder to stain, but selecting this option caused a new problem. Because several images are heavy on the use of black ink, this type of paper has caused some of those images to smudge or leave black dots on the pages during printing. The printers suggested I go for un-coated white paper and see if they look any better, so I have done just that. Once the sample arrives I will make a video showcasing the scales of the books, since a video will display the sizes of the books and the quality of the prints better than just a simple photograph.

For convenience, I have also started a page in the “Written Work” section of the site, which will help readers decide which version of a book is best suited to their budget and/or needs, as I can only provide discounted colour books at conventions or by selling leftover stock on etsy. Information on the book publishing process will also be available to read, for the curious few.

Thomas