The Aspen Panel – Some New, Some San Diego

Alex Wilson writes from NYCC for Bleeding Cool;

A good amount of what came out of the Aspen panel was information already released at San Diego Comic Con. That doesn't mean nothing was announced but New York seemed to be more of an elaboration on what had been said in San Diego.

I already knew that Aspen was going to do "10 for 10" in honor of their 10th year in the industry. For those who are not familiar with Aspen's 10 for 10 initiative, they will be putting out 10 new books in the coming year, starting in February. 5 will be completely new titles and 5 will be returning titles that will start a new volume but the kicker is that the book for each month will be $1, a strategy to acquire new readers into the folds of this somewhat small comic book company.

They did, however, announce a few of the titles of the upcoming books. The first book in the 10 for 10 will be called Legend of the Shadow Clan and David Wohl is crafting the script. The March comic will be the 2nd volume of Shrugged written by Aspen's president, Frank Mastromauro.

The 10th book in the 10 for 10 will be a fan's choice. Aspen is presenting 2 possible series and letting fans make the choice of which comic the company will create. The 2 choices are called Awaken Skies and Overtaken. The first is a more traditional looking aspen book. The cover shows a girl with wings and Mastromauro told the audience it was about a girl who acquires the power to fly. On the other side we have a book that seems much less Aspen than their books in the past. Mastromauro described Overtaken as "Supernatural meets Alien."

For any Lady Mechanika fans we have a bit of news on that front. I was told that Lady Mechanika wouldn't be solicited until the entire volume is finished so fans would not have to wait so long in between issues. 3 issues are currently out and the 4th is being completed but it won't be available until the rest of the volume (6 issues in this volume) is complete.

Idolized, Aspen's 1st true blue super hero book, is going to have photo covers (Rachel Clark modeling) for the rest of the volume (through issue 5.) I asked Peter Steigerwald if we are going to see more traditional super hero books coming out of Aspen and responded with "We find the best stories we want to tell," so it's possible that we might see more untraditional Aspen books coming out and we are even starting to with their new book Dead Man's Run which is about a prison guard who polices the top layer of hell but has to actually enter to save someone he cares about. We normally don't see anything that dark coming out of Aspen but this may be a turn in a more diverse direction.

Aspen is also trying to appeal to the digital audience by making most of their books available on electronic devices and they are doing a special promotion with a 1 issue shot of Charismagic and all Aspen digital proceeds of the comic sales will go to the Make a Wish Foundation.

There was also a hint that in the next year a book of Aspen covers would be coming out.

About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.

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