Friday, January 2, 2015

Snippets #27: February 25, 1985

       This "Snippet" is from a February 25, 1985 letter to Mom and Pop:


       FInally, I am taking a few moments out of my hectic schedule to try to catch up on some sorely neglected correspondence. I think this is the first non-business letter that I have written in the last two weeks.

       As I think you know, these past couple of weeks have been BUSY, to put it mildly. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that Kevin and I have been putting in 70-hour weeks doing turtle work. Let's see… since Kevin got here on Feb. 1, we've done a lot of stuff. First and foremost was starting work on TMNT #3, which at that time was still in incomplete thumbnail sketches, and lacking finished dialogue. In addition to that, we worked out all the finished dialogue for our upcoming Raphael, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Micro-Series, the artwork for which (25 pages) we have to get done by April 15. Then, last week we got all 30,000 copies of TMNT #2 (second printing) and have been splitting up our time between finishing the artwork for #3 and counting and packing #2's. It's wild… I don't think I've ever worked this hard before. So far we've shipped out 50 boxes (@ 12500 copies), and hope to get all the rest of them out by the middle of next week.

       We are also talking to an outfit called Palladium Books, which does role-playing ames like Dungeons and Dragons. They want to do a book/game based on the turtles, and it looks promising. Kev and I would probably do a bunch of drawings for it, and possibly a full-color cover… yet another project to work into this year's schedule! It would be a fun thing to do, though.

       Sometime in the next couple of weeks, the printer should deliver to us 35,000 copies of the third printing of TMNT #1, and we will start the counting and packing cycle all over again. About 28,000 of these are already sold, and I have a feeling that the rest won't last long. We are going to keep a couple thousand copies in our archives, though, so when we go to conventions we'll have them to sell.

       Speaking of conventions, Kev and I are getting psyched up for the one in Portsmouth, NH on March 16. It's going to be pretty neat, returning to the same con where we premiered the turtle book, but this time as invited guests! And getting our gas expenses paid, a free hotel room, and free tables at the con, yet! It was frantic the last time, and I expect it will be even more so this time. I'm hoping that we will have copies of TMNT#3 to sell there, but I don't think the printer will be able to get them done in time. C'est la vie!

       Having Kevin here is working out fine, though it does remind me that this house, while cute, is still pretty small. We have to get a larger studio; my tiny room here is very crowded when we have both of us plus several thousand comics in it. Every time you turn around fast you knock something over!"

       [That Palladium Books role-playing game was a fun project, and I believe a pretty good seller for Kevin Siembiada's company. But it has other significance in the tale of the TMNT -- its how Mark Freedman of Surge Licensing was able to first notice the TMNT property, and then track us down to talk about an agenting deal. 
       And the rest, as you probably know, is history. -- PL]

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