Wes Molebash has successfully auctioned a four-book middle-grade graphic novel series called Travis Daventhorpe for the Win! A series about an 11-year-old robotics engineer who discovers he's the prophesied hero of a magical kingdom from another dimension who must survive a school bully's atomic wedgies, new friendships, and an ancient evil while trying to master the hardest task of his life: swinging a sword.
The series was bought by Robyn Chapman at First Second, Michael Moccio will edit, and the first book will be published in 2022. Wes Molebash's agent Jennifer Azantian at Azantian Literary brokered the deal for world English rights. But she was not the first…
Wes Molebash tweeted "A little over 3 years ago, I put out the call asking folks to be beta readers on a #kidlit manuscript I had written. Within a day, I had over 50 people who wanted to help. Over the next few weeks, I whittled that group down to 9 folks who became my A-Team of beta readers. From October 2017 to February 2018, my A-Team read and responded to several drafts of the story. The critiques and insight were vital to not only making the story better, but building my confidence, as well. In March of 2018, I sent out the first pitch to literary agents and I vowed to keep my A-Team up-to-date on all the happenings. During the course of the next two years I found an agent, sent the book out on two submissions, lost my agent, pitched to agents again, signed with a new agent, resubmitted to publishers, and received an offer from @01FirstSecond. Now, as I work on the first book in the Travis Daventhorpe series (and what I hope will be the first of a MUCH LARGER series of connected graphic novels over the next couple decades), it's surreal to think about how far this idea has come. This book started out as a children's picture book, which became a chapter book, which became a highly-illustrated middle grade book, which ultimately became a graphic novel. None of these evolutions would've happened without people in my corner who believed in me and were willing to guide me along the way. So today I want to say THANKS to all the people who've helped me and encouraged me."
Talking about his journey, Wes Molebash says "When I was 10, my mom bought an instructional video cassette (That's right! VHS, baby!) that taught me how to draw newspaper comic strips. I watched that video until the tape wore out! Thanks to that video, I started drawing my own comics and sharing them with my friends and teachers at school. Later, in high school, my cartoons were published in the school newspaper. When the managing editor of the local newspaper came to speak to the journalism class, he noticed my comics and invited me to publish a daily comic strip in the Chillicothe Gazette. I felt like I had hit the BIG TIME! Time passed, and in the mid 2000s I started pitching comics to comic book publishers. I landed a gig drawing a semi-daily webcomic for a small press comics publisher, and we published a couple book collections of my strip. As a result, my books were reviewed by magazines and I was interviewed on radio shows and podcasts! I even went to comic book conventions and comic book stores all across the country to meet readers and sign books! I REALLY felt like I had hit the BIG TIME! In the 2010s, I struck out on my own and began freelancing and self-publishing my work. I've had the opportunity to work with some amazing organizations like Target, THE Ohio State University, and PBS Kids! I don't know about you, but that seems like the BIG TIME to me! When I'm not drawing comics, I'm spending time with my family at our palatial estate in Paris, France. And by "palatial estate in Paris, France" I mean "modest two-story home in Southern Ohio."
Other comics he has created include Molebashed from Little Village Comics, Sasquatch, You'll Have That Vol. and Dead@17 Roughcut from Viper Comics, and drew Different Is Awesome from Mascot Books.