Though only beginning to get started in print, Barbarian Lord as a idea is not new. Not medieval lit old, but from about the year 2000 old.
It began with an illustration job that fell through. After pencilling out the initial 9 strips in an afternoon on board I had cut to size for the job, without having made any plans as to what I’d do with them, they sat for a couple of years in box. Unseen, but not entirely forgotten.
Then the strips got “inked” in Flash (pre-Adobe, Macromedia Flash) for inclusion in the collaborative comic, Famous Fighters, done with my friend Tom in 2006.
After that, I used the next 4 years or so to mention to friends that I’d like to see the barbarian on a full length adventure. Eventually the impetus came in the form of the Paint and Pixel convention in Northampton, Ma. The same Tom from above invited me to stay at his house, hang out and attend the convention. As I had no comic to bring to the convention, I decided to finally bring Barbarian Lord off the perpetual back burner and put him on some burner closer to hand.
The first go at a full length story began with the issue “Outlaw, Book One”, which was to be one of 5 or 6 issues. When that found it’s way, through an unexpected and fortunate serpentine route, to an editor at Houghton Mifflin/Clarion Books, it was decided to put the whole Outlaw story out as a single volume. The Outlaw subtitle was dropped, but the original story idea remained the same.
The only problem with the Clarion arrangement was that I could no longer follow up with “Outlaw Book Two” as I had planned for the next conventions. To remedy the lack of a new comic, I redrew a handful of the original 9 strips, adding a new one, and calling it Tales.
Following Tales, I got to work on the full length book in earnest and after that began work on a planned trio of stand-alone Tales issues beginning with “The Draugr”. The second, currently only in the form of semi-legible notes, will be titled “The Sword”.