This morning I sat down to sketch out the project plan for the next Schlock Mercenary Book, Schlock Mercenary: The Blackness Between
The story runs from August 24th of 2003
through March 14th of 2004
, which is 29 weeks plus a Sunday. That's 88 three-row pages, which will require something like 45 sketches, margin bits, or new footnotes in addition to the 15 footnotes already running during that story. With the introduction and sketch page, it's a 90-page book before I add the bonus story or any other materials.
100 is a nice round number. It looks like this book will be a full 20 pages longer than Book I. I'm okay with that, provided I'm not "padding" to hit the number.
I've got about 20 rows of comics from February and March of 2004 that will need to be recolored, I need to create the cover art, and obviously I have to create the bonus story and other materials. I'll be doing the principal layout myself, and probably having Steve Troop tweak it for me when we approach our print deadline.
All that, plus feeding the buffer, is how I'll be spending my summer. Those of you who bought books have paid my wages for at least that long. I may have a quick family vacation, and there's Comic-Con to attend, but other than that, I'll be a busy guy.