Bleeding Cool, both the website and magazine, has run a number of pieces about comic books, unfinished, unpublished, languishing in the bottom drawer of a creator of a publisher.
Some grate more than others. But this one, this grates.
Steven Grant and Phil Winslade, commissioned by Karen Berger, created a 120 page graphic novel called Piecemeal. The project then moved to another editor. Who didn't like it or support its continued creation. The book was finished and paid for.
And then never published.
A sci-fi graphic novel about nanotech and body modification, the only mention of it I could find online was on Phil's Facebook page where he puts up an image (which we had to modify ourselves sadly, you can find the original here) and writes,
well a coupla there days-the composition made it though-This is for a 120 page graphic novel I worked on for 18 months which Vertigo aren't going to publish anytime soo
I understand that while it is a creator owned book, significant advances were paid and the creative team would have to pay DC back to regain the publishing rights. And that isn't happening any time soon.
Also, it transpires this is one of many such original graphic novels, commissioned, finished, and unpublished in similar circumstances. Some, like The Royals: Masters Of War and Lot 13 made it out. Most didn't.
You know, if it's the printing bill that's so offputting, there's always a digital option for DC. Or for another publisher to step in for some ready-made publications.
But otherwise? It just seems like a waste. We may see dribs and drabs. But that's a bit… piecemeal?
UPDATE: Steven Grant adds,
Thanks for the write-up, Rich, but in fact Phil & I have a deal in place with DC where we can get Piecemeal back to publish elsewhere anytime we like. We just haven't pulled the trigger on it yet since we don't have a new publisher set up. It's one of the things on my San Diego to do list this year, but it's a strange project that needs careful placement.
To clarify: DC has been very nice about Piecemeal & we have no problem with them. It's us that's the holdup, not them.