Hey everyone!tf 39

It’s Pre-order time. Combiner Wars starts in March and includes the return of Windblade! Stores are now accepting pre-orders for Transformers #39: Combiner Wars Opening Salvo and Windblade #1 which is also Combiner Wars part 1.

To pre-order at your local comic store you just have to go in and ask them to reserve you a copy, if they need the order codes I have listed them below:

Transformers #39: Combiner Wars Opening Salvo –  JAN150434
Windblade #1: Combiner Wars Part 1 – JAN150438

windblade 1Stores have to place their initial orders by January 18th so if you want to ensure you get a copy, pre-order by that date.

If you run into any problems or have any questions about pre-ordering comics, feel free to contact me via the contact button above or on my various social media.

Til All Are One,

One thing a lot of people don’t understand about professional writing is that most of your work happens after you’ve written your first draft. Writers do most of our work in rewrites and I’ve gotten some questions about the best way to rewrite your comic book, TV script or fanfiction novel.

Personally, I find the easiest way to re-write anything is to do multiple little passes: read through the story with a single, specific goal in mind. Don’t worry about anything but that goal. Then when you finish, do another pass with the next goal.

So I’m introducing a weekly series on my site to talk about some of my most common rewriting passes. This isn’t the only way to write, but it’s the way I write, so maybe it’ll help you too.

This week’s pass is the scene goal pass. Hope you enjoy.

NOTE: I’m using Superman characters as examples because I’m not working for DC right now and everyone knows who Superman is. I don’t own Superman; this is just an example for educational purposes; my thoughts are my own; blah, blah, blah. Please don’t sue me.

Scene Goal Pass

Read the scene and write at the top of it what actually needs to happen in this scene – what is the actual goal of this scene that moves the plot forward? Let’s try a very small, very simple (likely too simple) example.

Example 1. Superman hears Lois scream and rushes to her aid.

[NOTE: In ‘real life’ this would likely be a bigger scene where things get in the way of Superman rushing to Lois’ aid. But for the sake of keeping this example brief, we’ll just say it was an uneventful trip.]

Now that you know what needs to happen in this scene, go through the scene and cut out/adjust anything that isn’t serving that goal. In Example 1 Superman needs to hear Lois scream, not brush his teeth, talk about the sunset being pretty, fight a dozen bad guys, then hear Lois. We should only need a very small idea of where Superman is before he hears Lois and then everything afterward needs to be about rushing to her aid.

We can also trim the fat in other areas. All we NEED to have happen is to show Superman someplace, show him hear Lois and start to move toward her, then cut to him arriving wherever Lois is. We don’t need to see what happened on that trip and shouldn’t unless it adds something of real value to the scene.

GOOD IDEA: Superman flies toward Lois and calls Supergirl to meet him at Lois’ location.

This is a good addition to the scene because Superman is still pursuing the scene’s goal (coming to Lois’ aid) and establishing something that we need to set up later (that Supergirl will also be coming to this fight).

BAD IDEA: Superman hears Lois scream, turns to Supergirl, and says, “Lois is in trouble. Some women never learn,” and flies off.

This is a bad choice, because although Superman is reacting to the scene, he isn’t moving the plot forward (he stopped to talk Supergirl). In my view, if you ever write: “Character 1 stops to…” you’ve messed up. The only exception is if they’ve stopped pursuing a different goal to advance the scene’s goal (ex. Superman stopped punching a guy to save Lois).

This is also a poor choice of joke because it undercuts the goal of the scene: which is Superman rushing to Lois’ aid. If he thought Lois was in danger he’s a bad person for making a joke at her expense before saving her. It’s very hard to cut a funny joke, but they are the first things to get cut when a scene isn’t moving. If you HAD to keep this joke, a better place for it would be AFTER Superman has arrived to save Lois because it does not interfere with the goal of the scene.

So there you have it. Your first example of my rewriting process. Next time we’ll talk about my favorite pass: character motivation.

Hi Everyone!

So my plan was to start updating this space regularly but duty called and alas there is no rest for the wicked!DIG029227_1

What is keeping me busy right now? Well, this month I am writing and acting as a story consultant in animated television. Pretty cool huh? I’ll let you know more when I can.

John Barber, Sarah Stone, Livio Ramondelli and I are also hard at work on IDW’s Transformers Combiner Wars series which is coming out in 2015. Expect lots of massive robotic action. The best part of working on this series is figuring out the fight scenes using our action figures. At least that is my husband’s favorite part.

I am also about to start scripting my first original graphic novel story that the amazing Sarah Stone will be illustrating. I will be talking about this project a lot in 2015.

If any of you are going to Comikaze in Los Angeles, I’ll be there on Sunday where I’ll be appearing on a Lion Forge panel at Noon in room 308AB. I’ll be discussing my new Saber Rider digital comic series that should be launching soon on Amazon.

So that is what I am working on but there are also some cool new releases you can get your hands on.

Transformers Windblade Volume 1 is now available in a single collected edition. You can buy it in a physical trade paperback at your local comic shop or on Amazon.com. You can also buy it digitally here and read it on your computer, iPad or other device.

I also did a story with Meredith McClaren for Boom Studio’s Bravest Warriors: Paralyzed Horse Giant special. This was a very fun project and Meredith is an artist I’ve always wanted to work with; her art is amazing. Also Tessa Stone did the cover (pictured left) so now I have worked with both incredibly talented Stone sisters!

That is my crazy month, is anyone else really excited for the holidays so you can to take a little break and relax? Maybe a spa day? I know I am.

Until next time, be well,


Hello Everyone!

So this is my first official post on my new website. Here you’ll find updates of all my exploits as well as information about writing and other things.

So, what’s up first? My schedule for NYCC! I’m heading there on Wednesday for the following festivities:

NYCC Official Logo

Thursday October 9th

2pm – 3pm

Transformers Signing at Booth #1844 – with John Barber, Sarah Stone, Andrew Griffith and Livio Ramondelli.


Panel in Room 1A14 – “IDW & Hasbro: Transformers, Ponies & More!”

2014 has been a huge year for IDW and Hasbro! Join Senior Editor & Writer John Barber, with very special guests Amy Mebberson, Katie Cook, Sarah Stone, Mairghread Scott and Jim Zub for inside information on what’s happening with My Little Pony, Transformers, G.I. JOE, Dungeons & Dragons and more! Announcements, excitement, gossip, prizes and Q&A!


Friday, October 10th

Nothing scheduled, but feel free to tweet me or ask at the IDW booth. I’ll be making periodic stops.


Saturday October 11th


Panel in Room 1A14 – “IDW Publishing: The Writers”

Meet the writers behind the best scripts in comics! Join IDW’s VP of Marketing Dirk Wood and an all-star cast of writers for a spirited discussion about what it takes to write a great comic! Featuring Louise Simonson, Mairghread Scott, Chris Ryall, John Barber, Scott Tipton, M. Zachary Sherman, Andy Schmidt and Jeff Kline!

6pm – 7PM

Transformers Signing at  Booth #1844 – with John Barber, Sarah Stone, Andrew Griffith and Livio Ramondelli.


Sunday October 12th

Nothing scheduled, but same deal as Friday.

Hope to see you there. Good cannoli are appreciated.