Day 6 – In Case Of Werewolf
Day 6 of #scrypthalloween looks at my short story spinoff IN CASE OF WEREWOLF. This was the third graphic novel that @dpipito and I coordinated with 10 artists, and it is now in text form as well. We had some very professional artists for the comic version, and the stories within were written as ones you’d tell around a campfire….
official description: Do your bones ache? Does your instinct sometimes prevail over rational thought? When night descends, do you feel “different”? If any of these are your symptoms, then you are not alone. You may have contracted lycanthropy, and when the moon rises, your inner beast will emerge. This short story is a spinoff of the novel “Bones At Breakfast” and is available at lulu.com in print or as part of the Eden’s Order Trilogy at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.
Day 3 – Blood, The Second Helping
Day 3 of #scrypthalloween takes a look at my #novel BLOOD, THE SECOND HELPING. The cover art here (sans text) by @dpipito hides some of the plot in its colors. This was originally planned as a sequel to another book idea, but after the success of F&L it made more sense to do a #vampire #book. My villain Cain is a many fan favorite, as well as how I incorporated real historical events into the narrative. It’s available in print and digital forms at Lulu.com and Amazon, as well… as part of the Eden’s Order trilogy at those markets and Barnes and Noble. …….
official description: Gordon Lightcap and his group of unique specialists race against time to stop the coming apocalypse. Cain, the world’s first vampire, and his House of Twelve, have waited an eternity to put this world changing plan into motion. At the center of these two sides is one woman with two identities. Her human persona of Moira Donatelli, has left clues to assist Gordon in his quest, while her vampire identity, Lilith the Deceiver, has helped Cain back to power. Both men must fight for their survival as well as the woman they love.
Day 2 – Zombie Incidents
Review: Ash Vs Evil Dead Season 2
Season 1 of Ash vs Evil Dead was a great throwback to the Evil Dead/Army of Darkness franchise. It cemented itself as the perfect installment for fans of old and new. I thought season 2 would have been more of the same approach, but I was thankfully wrong.
Sure there was some of the B movie humor, which had me laughing hysterically at one point (The Morgue scene when Ash is going after the book). But there was also some sincerity to it in a very Evil Dead 1 sort of way. When Ash is in the asylum it is downright creepy. Baal vs Ash in a mental battle was fun to watch. Ruby joining the team was a step in the right direction of adding tension and mistrust. Pablo becoming the book was interesting. Lee Majors as Brock (Ash’s father) was perfect casting, and it made me miss his old 6 million dollar man days.
Then they took a completely unexpected turn and went back to prevent the events in the first movie from ever happening, only to change them for the worse. My question is who picked up the Necronomicon in the post credits scene? If the writers wanted to really throw the viewers for a loop they would make it one of the kids from the remake a few years back. In that movie Ash shows up to pick up the surviving girl. With that epilogue and him in the shadows there, it could easily be explained that he brought her in as a new team member. This would make that movie canon. Even if it was not a good interpretation it would still fit in what could become an even more exciting series.
I mean there really isn’t anything I can complain about here. If B-movie horror/comedy isn’t your thing, then you won’t like this, but for any fan of the original films I highly recommend it. I give it 4.5 out of 5 sCrypt ratings. What did you think of Ash vs Evil Dead season 2?
Review: Alien Covenant
The Alien franchise has been a favorite of mine since I was a kid. Each installment has me on the edge of my seat waiting for release. Well I finally got to sit down and watch Alien: Covenant, and found it to be familiar, yet refreshing.
Slight Spoilers ahead…
At first I found myself confused thinking that they wouldn’t even touch on the events in Prometheus, but thankfully they wrapped up that story fairly well, and in a shocking way. It explains a lot for the rest of the series.
The twist with David and Walter at the end however was slightly predictable. I saw it coming a mile away. The whole premise to the crew going to the planet that Prometheus had been on was a little far fetched. You would think for a technologically advanced crew of astronauts, that there’d be some sort of record of what happened to the crew of Prometheus or at least where they were going. There were also a few places where the CGI seemed off to me, but not terrible. I’m just used to the original films where the effects were all practical.
That was the only real faults I found with the movie. On the positive side, Michael Fassbender is becoming one of my favorite actors. His dual roles in this movie were spectacular, and Katherine Waterson’s female lead was as likeable as Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley.
The high points for me were the explanation of where the Aliens came from and how they were engineered. They aren’t yet the species we meet in the first Alien movie. They are something else, but by the end of the movie we see where it is going to lead. I’ll admit that the white colored alien was downright eerie to see. It gave me the creeps.
One thing that I really like is that this is definitely NOT the movie that takes place right before Alien. There obviously has to be another film to explain more. While it answered quite a few questions, it opened the door for more lore. I still would like to see one more adventure for Ellen Ripley, but if I can’t get that this is just as good.
Overall I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars. It’s be no means a spectacular film, but has an important place in the franchise. It was fun, and you could feel the mortality of the characters involved. What did you think of Alien Covenant?
Day 28: Signed giveaway of SOULS 4 SUPPER
There are only a few days left until Halloween, so I felt it was time to do a little giveaway. I’m giving 1 copy of my novel SOULS 4 SUPPER to 1 lucky winner, and it will be personally signed and addressed to whomever you designate.
This is a random drawing, and it is simple to enter. To do so, you must do one or more of the following:
1) Follow me on Twitter @rickpipito and retweet this post (tagging me in it).
2) Follow me on Instagram @rickpipito and either screen grab or regram this entry tagging me in it.
3) Share this link from my facebook page http://www.facebook.com/fleshandleftovers.
4) Reblog this contest on your own site or blog and make sure to tag this link in it.
Each of the above will earn you 1 entry into the drawing. If you do all four, you’ve quadrupled your chances. The drawing winner will be selected at midnight on Halloween night (Oct 31, 2014). If you have any questions, please feel free to inbox me email@example.com or comment below.
Thanks for your participation and stay tuned for the winning announcement. Good Luck
Day 23: On The Slate
After a little negotiating, I’m allowed to give some information about the upcoming projects in the works for my novels and comics. Here’s what’s going on:
GENETIC MORSELS: In a not so distant future, the world has come to accept one world leader. Many believe he is just, but something sinister is in his plans. A small group of unlikely allies must come together to uncover the truth, but they have an obstacle… the next step in human evolution has begun. Homoevolutis are a group of humans that have extraordinary abilities, but unlike comic book heroes, these abilities apply to real world physics and can be more deadly than beneficial. (Look for Genetic Morsels in early 2015.)
UNTITLED Alien book: The government has held secrets from the public eye for years, but there is one secret that might shock all of mankind. As visitors from another world return from long ago, humanity must sort out the past and reveal the truth about our own history. What truly lies out there may be something that even the most inventive of minds has not forseen. (Coming late 2015)
NO, IT’S NOT. YES, IT IS: URBAN LEGENDS: Following the format of the argument book I did, this will share personal experiences and humor to address whether urban legends are real or not. It will take a look at these stories and present facts for and against it. Then you decide if it is real or not.
A LITTLE GIRL IN THE LAND OF THE HICCUPS: slated to be released on Black Friday of 2014, this children’s book illustrated by Dan Pipito in his amazing watercolor style, follows the adventures of a girl who must rescue a village from the annoying creatures known as the Hiccups.
A LITTLE BOY IN THE LAND OF SLEEPLESS KNIGHTS: A boy who decides to confront the “monster” in his closet finds himself swallowed into a world where shadowy knights keep children awake forever. Can he stop them before their sleep draining abilities make them unbeatable, and return in time to get some shut eye? (Late 2015)
UNTITLED children’s book: The little girl and boy get lost on a new adventure.
sCrypt Comics Graphic novels:
DEMONIC ENTITIES: This graphic spinoff of the novel DEVIL’S DESSERT focuses on what happened to the demons after the events in the novel.
FINAL UPGRADE: This graphic spinoff of the novel TECHNO FEAST shows more of what happens all over the globe during the events of the novel.
FLESH AND LEFTOVERS: The first in a series of audiobooks brings in talent to revisit the novel that started it all. (Coming December 2014)
There are other projects on the board, but at this time I can’t reveal much about them due to copyrights. Stay tuned.
Day 21: Currently Published Plots and more
I figured since it is getting closer to Halloween, I should make a quick list of the current publications I have and a brief idea as to the summary of them.
FLESH AND LEFTOVERS: While zombie incidents plague the world, the survivors must unite to prepare for a much bigger threat.
BLOOD, THE SECOND HELPING: Vampires have been a thing of legend, but throughout history they’ve played an important role. Now a team of humans who have survived horrific incidents must seek out the vampire lord and destroy his clan.
BONES AT BREAKFAST: A sinister villain has evolved into a creature beyond imagination. With his army of werewolf servants and allies, he will attempt to reshape the world in his image.
SOULS 4 SUPPER: The ghosts of countless people roam free in a desperate move toward the afterlife. Can a small group of covert operatives surpass them to prevent the opening of Pandora’s Box?
DEVIL’S DESSERT: Hell’s demons have chosen earth as their final battlefield against the forces of heaven. With humanity caught in the center of this eternal war, they will have to choose their own path toward survival or face extinction.
TECHNO FEAST: A supercomputer has evolved and taken control of all networked technology. With the world at its command, humanity must find a way to combat the threat, by seeking out answers that have been hidden from the public eye.
Non fiction books:
NO, IT’S NOT. YES, IT IS: ARGUMENTS: A lighthearted look at arguing through personal experience will give you a few laughs, might teach you a thing or two, and help better your approach when disagreeing with someone. At the very least, you will know how to deal with certain personalities.
Graphic Comic Books:
ZOMBIE INCIDENTS: spinoff filling in back story of events in Flesh and Leftovers.
LEGENDS OF VAMPIRE: spinoff building on the world of Blood, The Second Helping.
IN CASE OF WEREWOLF: spinoff of events in Bones At Breakfast.
GHOSTLY HAUNTINGS: spinoff stories from Souls 4 Supper
EDEN’S ORDER TRILOGY: Collects Flesh and Leftovers, Blood the Second Helping, & Bones and Breakfast, as well as novelized versions of Zombie Incidents, Legends of Vampire, In Case of Werewolf and bonus material.
PANDORA’S CHAOS TRILOGY: Collects Souls 4 Supper, Devil’s Dessert, & Techno Feast, as well as novelized versions of In Case Of Werewolf, Demonic Entities, Final Upgrade, and bonus material.
All of the above listed are available for purchase in multiple formats through the links on the right of this page.
Day 20: Horror and Food collide in a series of Titles
The question has been asked of me time and again, “Did you use the food related theme for your book titles because of your close food connection?” Honestly, no. It is ironic that it worked out that way, but when I had the concept for the first book I was dying to find a catchy title. One day as I was sitting there brainstorming with martini in hand, I thought about what zombies eat. Flesh was the obvious answer, but that wasn’t catchy or creative enough on its own.
Then I thought, well if they eat meat what about the leftovers of the carcass? The title came from that. Then when I decided that this was going to be part of a series, I went with similar thinking. What does the main threat consume and how can I tie it into a different type of dining experience?
I didn’t want to do “Flesh and leftovers 2” because even with a subtitle that wouldn’t be accurate. “Blood, The Second Helping” would have the sequel number in it AND still meet the title criteria I set. The only other number at this point is in book 4, so “Souls 4 Supper” worked, and so on.
I find that it becomes increasingly difficult with each new title to come up with something equally fun and catchy without feeling forced. So far there are 6 books with 3 more planned in the main series. With the comic book spinoffs, I focused on subtitles being the defining part, and used the name of the “chapters” (ala incidents for the first one) and the threat focused upon.
All 9 novels (plus the bookend mentioned in my prior article) will be a grand feast, so stay tuned. As far as my aforementioned food connection? Well, she does inspire me to write with amazing food and drink, so in a way that inspiration alone goes hand in hand.
Day 13: Ancient Antagonist vs Modern Good Guy – Cain vs Gordon
FLESH AND LEFTOVERS was a zombie novel, but the zombies weren’t the build up for what was to come. By the end of the book I had set up Cain to be the antagonist of the first trilogy. The great thing about this character is that he is in essence completely immortal. I wanted a man who was downright evil and bad with a small part of his humanity that made you sometimes cheer for him.
Imagine being the first person ever to have committed a major crime, and then not being forgiven for it. Cain murdered Abel, but there were no
ground rules per se. He was punished by a higher power and had the “mark of God” placed upon him. As the vampire lord his immortality stayed with him even in death. Even his remorse for killing his brother did not rid him of this plague. He had to watch his friends and loved ones die before completely switching over and giving in to his demonic nature.
If he couldn’t have freedom of humanity, then he would rid he world of humanity, and punish God in turn by taking away his precious creatures. Their God would no longer control them, and instead they’d be Cain’s sheep like minions. Through his journey we see Cain take on different characteristics and traits and despite apparent death, he is always there some how. Perhaps he is given a second chance at some point, but was he misunderstood? Was this all just a punishment set in place with predetermined results?
Bring in Gordon Lightcap. He was a man whose family was torn from him at a young age. Not once did he blame any higher power. Instead he used this as a cause to prevent anyone else from suffering the same fate. His experiences sent him on a borderline alcoholic binge, but he continued on. Even when haunted by his memories of the past, he came through strong.
Battling against Cain is something that is built towards and their common love interest throws a whole other aspect into it. You can see what happens as the books progress, but the bottom line is that you have two very similar people who took their experiences in opposite directions. In other words Gordon is in a way a complete opposite version of Cain. This rivalry is the focus of the first trilogy but not limited to there.
Follow the adventures of Cain and Gordon in the entire series or in individual installments: FLESH AND LEFTOVERS, BLOOD THE SECOND HELPING, BONES AT BREAKFAST, SOULS 4 SUPPER, DEVIL’S DESSERT, TECHNO FEAST and the comic spinoffs.
Day 7: A Shift in Genres for TECHNO FEAST
31 Days of Halloween continues with my 6th novel, TECHNO FEAST. What started out in horror had to graduate slightly for a novel about technology turning against humanity. We depend so much on electronics of all kinds, that society has become spoiled in a way.
I am just as guilty as the next person to find myself staring at my phone reading articles or text messaging. I also enjoy playing video games on occasion, and the luxuries of modern cars and household items. So I thought to myself, “What if technology was gone? What would we do?”
In what has been called by fans as “The Terminator meets The DaVinci Code,” TECHNO FEAST gives us a look at what could occur based on research. If an intelligent computer took over everything tied into a network on the planet, we’d be fighting against an antagonist that is an all controlling, all seeing machine void of human emotion.
Keeping the horror type feel of what I had written to date was my goal, but the elements within give it a slight sci-fi/horror tone. There are some technologies that are in development, and in a few years most of what is in the book will most likely be standard. The horror of it is not necessarily the drama played out, but the thought of this happening, while the sci-fi elements back that tonality. Throw in a touch of thriller and uncovering secrets hidden by various groups such as the Illuminati and the Freemasons, and you’ve got a wild ride that’ll have you questioning whether the humans will succeed by the end of the book.
Enjoy the novel TECHNO FEAST in paperback or on the Kindle via links on the right of this page. Be sure to stay tuned for the graphic comic book spinoff, FINAL UPGRADE.
Day 1: 12 Facts about FLESH AND LEFTOVERS
To start off my 31 days of Halloween, I figured I should begin with 12 facts about my first novel, FLESH AND LEFTOVERS.
1) FLESH AND LEFTOVERS is my one and only zombie novel. It is the only book I’ve written where I didn’t have an editor, but the fan feedback was amazing! People demanded more, and since I didn’t want to write any more full length books about zombies, it made me work with Dan Pipito to create sCrypt Comics for spinoff graphic novel stories.
2) The idea to write a zombie book came when the topic of “What would you do if there was an outbreak” scenarios would come up in many a work place conversation. The problem with these scenarios is that everyone had ideas of what a zombie was “supposed” to be like, based on the varying differences in books, movies, etc. So, I wanted to create a book where they could all be in the same story, but have legitimate reasons for them tying together.
3) Causes for zombies: Mutated strain of rabies virus that affects human and animal life, Viral outbreak, Demonic summoning and control, Radioactive meteor, Cannibals worshiping their “god”, Childhood vaccinations, alien parasite, sixth generation offspring of vampires, drug induced hallucinations, and voodoo (macumba).
4) The first chapter in F&L takes place in Jim Thorpe, PA. It is an annual tradition to visit my Uncle and Aunt’s bed and breakfast during Christmas time there. It was during the winter of 2008 that I knew I wanted to base part of my first published novel in that town. The peacefulness and solitude there brings a wide range of emotions that make a perfect setting.
5) Religion and history have always fascinated me, so when I decided to make Cain (from the Cain and Abel story) an antagonist for future books, his origin of what he becomes had to be researched. I found that despite the different beliefs, the Cain and Abel story remains almost completely the same throughout all religions.
6) It wasn’t until halfway through the book that I decided this could work as a series. My goal was to make it flow but to make each book stand on its own as well, and focus on something unique for each plot. (zombies being F&L).
7) My fascination with zombie lore can be blamed on the George A Romero “of the Dead” movies, and the Resident Evil Series of video games.
8) The characters I’ve created are not based on individual people, but rather personalities of people I’ve met. The only exceptions to this rule are Gordon Lightcap and Moira Donatelli. Gordon was based on my own experiences and the overall person I am, and Moira was created as an amalgamation of what I saw as my “perfect woman.”
9) Although cannibals are not zombies, I felt the need to place them into the story. How would a “normal” unifected human devour another person? Why would they do it? And What would they do with the parts of the corpse left over? All these questions are addressed in the book.
10) It took me over a year to write F&L because I began to flesh out (pun intended) the sequels that would follow it. I had to make sure my origin story for the characters was in place, and where I wanted to go with it. By the time I was finished writing FLESH AND LEFTOVERS, I had six books planned out in the series (each a stand alone installment).
11) Each “chapter” is called an “Incident.” This was done because I wanted people to be able to pick up the book and either read it straight through or just choose one story at a time. The overall plot can’t be followed by just one incident, but I wanted that option for the reader as they stand can work on their own.
12) When I approached Dan to to do the cover art, he instantly came up with the idea of teeth tearing into raw meat. It is still one of my favorite book covers for my novels to date.
There is my post for today. I welcome any questions or comments you may have. Stay tuned tommorrow for another installment in my 31 days of Halloween. FLESH AND LEFTOVERS as well as its graphic comic spinoff ZOMBIE INCIDENTS are available through links on the right side of this page. It will also be available in audiobook format soon.
Interview with sCrypt Comics about “S4S: Ghostly Hauntings”
The following is an interview that Rick and Dan Pipito of sCrypt Comics did back in November 2013 for the release of their 4th graphic novel. Feel free to comment and ask any additional questions.:
Q: “Ghostly Hauntings” is the 4th title from sCrypt Comics. Can you tell us what it is about?
Rick: It is a spinoff from my novel “Souls 4 Supper,” and centers around different ghost stories.
Dan: And a touch of other paranormal things.
Q: Who are the artists involved, and can you tell us a little bit about them?
Dan: There are nine artists in all. Mao Estheim is our first international artist. She lives in Japan and has a very classic Manga style. She brought her vision of our story about a haunting hoax, by incorporating heavy influences from Japanese horror films.
Rick: Jacob Greenawalt actually found her for us, and he came back to join us for another round on this one.
Dan: Yeah, Jake has a very crisp line and caricature style to his art. He was able to take characters that we’d already had done in our first comic, and make them his artwork while staying true to what the original design was. His story in this one is actually a direct sequel of the first story I did back in our first issue “Zombie Incidents,” and I was very happy with the outcome.
Rick: Michael A Garard Jr found us through Google Plus, and he has a very comic booky style. He was one of the few artists who did full color this time around, and you can tell he’s very passionate about the genre. He’s also our savior of this issue, and did two stories instead of just one. Both used differing ideas and styles that made them each unique, and entertaining.
Dan: He also did everything in half of the time as everyone else without sacrificing quality.
Rick: Next up we brought back Kelly Swann whose military style art is very realistic and accurate to the eras she portrays. Kelly’s story centered around a genie of the lamp, which I think expanded her area of expertise. As supernatural as it was, she was able to keep it grounded and still hold the magical feel we desired.
Dan: Muhammad Nurul Islam is another international artist. He was born in Indonesia and resides in Great Brittain, so his culture has influenced his talent. What he did was portray a ghost story in a way that was family friendly to begin with, but made it almost feel like you were reading a children’s book, which is what we wanted.
Rick: Joe Parisi is another veteran with us. He’s actually the only one aside from us that has been involved in all four of our sCrypt publications, and his art is ever evolving. I’ve never seen an artist who can stay true to themselves while portraying a wide range of work; until we met Joe. He’s really a pleasure to work with, and is passionate about taking on another of our stories. He even told me he feels like he has to continue stepping up his art because of the increasingly good talent we bring on board. The funny thing is that the story he drew in this one was perhaps the most difficult one to make work so far, and he managed to capture it well.
Dan: Then we have Asher Humm, who had scheduling conflicts and wasn’t able to do our last one, but he was more than eager to come back this time. It’s his third venture with us, and as a professional artist, he has complexities that can’t be easily mimicked. The detail he puts in really makes a six page story feel like a full novel at times, and we look forward to continue working with him.
Rick: Kristie Vanderzee had first choice of stories this time because she’d been our last minute saving grace with our previous publication. With a little more time to work on the art, she did some really cool things. I don’t know how, but she managed to juggle getting married in the process, and found a new job in the comic book world as well. With everything she had on her plate, I’m amazed at the quality and effort she put in. Her final product was outstanding.
Dan: Finally, there is me. I’m just trying to find a style to fit in, so I’m constantly trying new things. I’d like to take my art to a definitive style with comic books, and I feel I’m close to what I finally want to settle upon.
Rick: Dan’s got a lot on his plate with these comics. He not only does a story, but is a consultant to the stories I write, and brings my cover art ideas to life as well. It gets a little hectic at the end with trying to piece it all together, but we’ve been happy with the final outcome, and it gets better each time.
Q: A project of this magnitude often comes across obstacles. Did you guys run into any hurdles along the way?
Rick: Well, we won’t go into specifics, but this time around one of our artists had an unfortunate health issue, and he wasn’t able to complete the story he wanted to do. Thankfully, as we mentioned before, Michael Garard Jr was able to step in at the last minute and do it. Sometimes these things just happen that are out of our control, and for the artist who had the health issues, we only wish that person the best, and hope that we can one day work together again.
Dan: There was also some printing issues because of sizing and boundaries in post production. That was annoying, but we worked through it.
Q: How did the cover art idea come about? How does the cover differ from working on the rest of the comic?
Dan: Rick had the idea to have a kettle with boiling souls escaping in the steam. Luckily I worked in a kitchen at the time and I was able to get a good picture. If you look closely at the ghostly faces in the steam, you might see something recognizable. I incorporated some classic horror face poses into it as a sort of tribute, and fun Easter egg. I like the photographic covers as opposed to fully illustrated. It makes it more of a real item than just a collection of fiction stories. This is also a new trilogy in the novel forms, so being able to introduce a new color palette in the graphic novel counterparts is exciting.
Rick: We were really limited to mostly red colors with the vampires, zombies and werewolves, so now that we’re on to the next thing, it allows our color range to open. Ghosts, demons, and technology leave a lot of room with which to work, and it’ll help make our comics stand out as trilogies (just as the novels do).
Q: When can we expect the next entries in the novels and in the sCrypt Comics graphic novels?
Rick: “Techno Feast” is the next novel in the series, and comes out in March 2014. Then we are going to take some time to get reorganized. Instead of publishing another comic in 2014, we will work on the novel trilogy, which will have those stories in it plus extras. 2015 will be our next sCrypt release. We just want it to be right, and it takes our attention away from our normal projects greatly. Don’t worry though… they keep getting better, and the extra time will allow us to make it even more so.
Dan: “Demonic Entities” is the title right?
Rick: Yes. Our next comic will be about angels and demons, and the “Devil’s Dessert” spinoff will be called “Demonic Entities.”
Q: Do you have a particular favorite story in “Ghostly Hauntings” that stands out above all of the rest in your mind?
Rick: Being as I wrote them all, they each hold an equal place in my heart. I can’t really choose a particular favorite of them all. If I had to absolutely narrow it down, it would probably be the “Dreams” story because it has very important historical ties, and is a key element in the novel.
Dan: For me, I think it’s a three way tie. Rick had chaos as a common theme throughout the book and the comic, and he wanted to see how an artist would portray chaos. So, for those frames, we have Pandora’s Box opening, and each particular artist’s version of what would come out. It is really cool to see a total inventive translation like that, and gives insight into the artists’ minds. They look like they actually collaborated together in some aspects, when in reality they had no contact at all. The reason I chose the story that I did was because Rick based it on events from our childhood, and so it held a place in my mind that sits above the rest. I didn’t want anyone else drawing that story because I knew what I had envisioned it as.
Q: The tie ins you mentioned establish that continuity you mentioned. What really made you take this route?
Rick: I actually hadn’t thought to do it until the stories were already written. It was an afterthought in the storyboarding phase where I wondered how I could make them coexist better. It comes natural to me in novel form. Art is out of my jurisdiction, so I had to think on a different level. I figured that it would help to describe Pandora’s Box contents even better if I could emphasize that chaos in one person’s mind doesn’t necessarily mean it is the same in another’s. I’d like to do more of this with future installments as well.
Q: There is no concept art page this time. What made you decide to get rid of it, after it was present in the first three installments?
Rick: Timing really. The end was a lot of rushing around, and not many of the artists had concept submissions. It takes hours to put together something like that out of cutting, splicing, and finding the correct parts to fit like a glove. We didn’t have time to put together a jigsaw puzzle of scrap art.
Dan: It is unfortunate, but he’s right. We will definitely add that back in to future comics, but we had to skip it for now. The funny thing is that I don’t think we missed much. A lot of the time, concept art is often just pencils of what becomes the final product, so it isn’t like you would have seen a whole lot more.
Rick: The only thing I actually regret about this decision is that we didn’t get a ghost stick family, as Dan did with the previous three.
Dan: Yeah, they were fun. Maybe we will get one for the website though.
Rick: Or maybe we can work on a merchandizing idea for it in the future. I could see a custom sCrypt Comics bumper sticker with the creature family of your choice.
Q: Are there any hidden “Easter Eggs” in this issue?
Rick: Ha! Tons. Dan, did you put any in yours that I’m unaware of?
Dan: No. No hidden penises this time. It was straight cut and dry.
Rick: There are a few hidden items as tribute. The cover as Dan mentioned has some things in it. The sCrypt Comics logo was written into the story in a coffin scene. Slimer, The Wizard of Oz, Evil Dead, Aquaman, and even fitting in our last name, as well as one of the artists’ last names ended up in the final product. I love that kind of stuff for people to look at the detail closely. There are others too, but you have to look for them.
Q: I understand you now have a free online comic as well. Tell us about that.
Rick: When we were kids, we’d read the Sunday Funnies in the newspaper, and wanted to do something similar. So, I began writing “Munchies and Deedoos.” It’s a family friendly thing we post on our site that has a touch of humor and cuteness. A lot of it is inspired by my own kids, so it’s a lot of fun to do.
Dan: Rick told me about the characters and I began sketching the art for them right away. I think it’ll be interesting to see how each artist renders them. I like the smartness with which it was written, because it is relatable to everyone, even if you don’t have kids. We were all children at one point, which is why it is universal.
Rick: We also wanted to stick with what sCrypt is all about, so the two main characters are not human. Munchies is kind of like this slug like alien creature with hair that has a mind of its own, and Deedoos is a robot with a pajama like butt flap that displays gears instead of butt cheeks. The horror of it all comes into play with how the two characters perceive everyday things. Kids have wild imaginations, so you really get to see what a child might be thinking in a really disturbing and humorous way.
Dan: When I heard the name “Deedoos” I immediately thought of the beeps and boops that old computers made, and I knew he had to be a robot. Munchies was actually my niece’s (Rick’s daughter) idea. I asked her what kind of creature she might be, and she said “I think she’s a slug, but not really a slug, and her hair is just like mine.” Her really curly and long hair combined with a slug gave me the instant image of Medusa, but my niece has big bright eyes too, so I added cartoonishly large eyes. With that and how I find the old comic strip “Calvin and Hobbes” so simple, yet so intelligent, I eventually came up with what we have now.
Q: So will you work the other artists into “Munchies and Deedoos” the way that you do with the other comics?
Rick: Not exactly the same way, but yes. We’d like to have a different artist for each chapter. It’s a great way for people to get their names out there, and if someone doesn’t make the cut for one of our bigger productions, then they can still have a place here because it will probably fit their styles differently.
Q: One of my favorite features on your site is the “Artist of The Month” spot. Do you only spotlight artists with whom you’ve worked at sCrypt, or is it open to anyone?
Rick: So far, it’s only been people who’ve done work for sCrypt, and I think I want to keep it that way. It makes it a little more special. That being said, however, we are always open to more, so if someone were to send us fan art or wants to get involved to some capacity, that door is always open.
Q: Where can we get copies of sCrypt Comics graphic novels and the Rick Pipito novels?
Rick: The comics (Zombie Incidents, Legends of Vampire, In Case of Werewolf, and Ghostly Hauntings) can be found at www.indyplanet.com, and the novels (Flesh and Leftovers, Blood The Second Helping, Bones at Breakfast, Souls 4 Supper, & Devil’s Dessert) can be found in print at www.lulu.com or for the kindle at www.amazon.com
Halloween Spotlight: Ghosts
My fourth novel, “Souls 4 Supper,” and its comic book spinoff, “Ghostly Hauntings” center around the topic of death and the afterlife. The stakes are upped for all of the protagonists as the deal with ghostly entities. What kind of ghosts are we talking? All kinds. As with my other novels, i attempted to incorporate all variations of lore and bring about something new, where it can all coexist.
My ghost and spirit world breakdown is as follows in my books…
1) Seeing the dead: Some people with near death experiences survive only to be able to communicate with the lost souls of the dead. They are forever tormented unless they find a way to release each lost soul into the afterlife.
2) Ghost Towns: More than just myths and urban legends, if an entire city’s residents were to die from some tragic event, and their souls are unable to find their way to the afterlife, then their ghostly remnants are left behind to wander. Unfortunately over millennium, they begin to lose their minds, so while some ghosts have purpose, most wander aimlessly, unaware of their former existence or the need to find final rest.
3) Djinns (Genies): These are people who have done something so wrong, that their spirits are forced inside a magical object. The longer their spirits remain, the more powerful they become. However, their powers come at a cost, as it is unpredictable to how their final usage will appear.
4) Children: Up until the age of 5, most human children are able to see ghostly apparitions. They often giggle, and interact with what us adults perceive as them having imaginary friends. In reality, the children aren’t imagining anything.
5) Hoaxes: Many ghostly reports are false. Some people thrive on scaring others by creating spectres, photographs, and tall tales to create the urban haunting legends.
6) Ghosts trying to communicate: Some spirits are trapped here with a purpose. They will not rest until their murderer is discovered. Often these ghosts move objects in our world to try to leave clues for us to find. These spirits often become angered, and frustrated at our lack of perception.
7) Catching Ghosts: Ghosts can be captured by linking the four planes of existence. There is Heaven, Hell, Earth, and the spirit realm. By disrupting these planes with extreme emotion, it is possible to summon a spirit here or make it visible. Then it can be contained through certain uses of EMF (Electromagnetic Frequencies).
8) Dreaming: When we dream, our souls have the ability to leave our bodies. In this state, our spirits travel to different places, times, possible futures, and alternate realities. The reason that we cannot often recall these dreams is because the human brain can’t fully process this type of travel. Our souls are fully aware of what happens even though we may not.
9) Reincarnation: If you were to die, would you come back as someone else? Depending on whether you repent for your misdeeds or are honored for your heroism, tells how those can return. Not everyone is reincarnated. Only a few are given this chance.
10) Famous Encounters: Traveling spirits take a look closely at events throughout history. Veronica Beranice wiping Jesus’ face, Joan of Arc, JFK’s assassination, The Tower of Babel, The Rosetta Stone, Hua Mulan, Bonnie and Clyde, and Atlantis are some of these seen closer in Souls 4 Supper.
11) Pandora’s Box: This fabled box is in fact shaped like a pyramid. Its contents, if opened will spew forth chaotic realms. It acts as a gateway for souls to enter to the afterlife, or something more powerful to exit into our world. Chaos comes in many spiritual forms. It all depends on who opens it.
12) Book of Knowledge: This haunted book will be different for every reader. Its spiritual essence, born of the tree of Knowledge from the Garden of Eden, will gaze into one’s soul and biography their life.
13) Possession: Some spirits are friendly, while others are quite the opposite. When two souls inhabit the same body, an internal struggle begins. Only the most powerful and willing soul will become the dominant entity.
14) Ectoplasm: Ghosts powerful enough to exist in this world will leave behind a gooey residue. This residue will evaporate however in direct sunlight or bright light, which makes analyzing it a difficult task.
15) Wraiths: Wraiths are vampires that die and are unable to pass on to the afterlife. These immortal beings are strengthened and able to return to the real world if they consume enough powerful souls to empower them.
Without going too far into detail, those are some of the ghostly entities in my books. For this round, we enjoyed the bottle of wine shown above. You’ll notice that the comic book cover is in a picture frame. That is because at this moment of posting this, I am still awaiting my final proof copy of the issue. It’s all the same. Here are some of our favorite ghostly things not related to our own creations…
Rick’s favorite video game involving ghosts is Silent Hill. His favorite ghost movie is the Sixth Sense. His favorite ghostly character is DC comics’ Deadman. One of his favorite ghostly books is Philadelphia Ghost Stories by Charles J Adams III.
Dan’s favorite video game involving ghosts is Soul Reaver. His favorite movie about ghosts is Ghostbusters. Lloyd the bartender from The Shining is Dan’s best ghost of the year. Shakespeare’s Macbeth is Dan’s favorite ghostly book.
What are your favorites? Are you a ghost story fan? Grab yourself a copy of “Souls 4 Supper” the novel. It is available at www.lulu.com in softback book and on www.amazon.com for the Kindle. Also, the spinoff comic book “Souls 4 Supper: Ghostly Hauntings” is available for purchase at www.indyplanet.com. Help support our soul sucking.
“Souls 4 Supper” and its spinoff are (C) 2012 by Rick Pipito. Stay tuned for our demon spotlight…
Halloween Spotlight: Werewolves
Werewolves are creatures even more deadly than vampires. I knew from book 1 that my third novel would entail Werewolves. I am in constant need of upping the stakes with what my characters face. Keeping with the theme, I wanted all aspects of lycanthropy lore to fit in somehow. I took this and expanded upon it to give more depth.
Dan again was a very effective cohort with the comic book spinoff, and of course the cover art for the novel. Like zombies and vampires, werewolves are told in various ways. Whether it be a full moon, having the ability to change at will or something entirely different, there are countless cases of these tales. “Bones At Breakfast” the novel, and its comic book spinoff “In Case Of Werewolf” gather these varying accounts and bring it into the world I’ve established. Check out the breakdown of our werewolves…
1) Cursed by a Gypsy: These are people who have done something to anger a gypsy. Once the curse is upon them, they lose all humanity during a full moon. Unaware of their primal instincts, they go on a killing spree, feasting on the bones of their victims. Once they awake in human form, covered in blood and viscera, they are horrified at their state, but have no recollection of what happened.
2) Legendary Creatures: Bigfoot, Yeti, Sasquatch, the Abominable snowman… these have all been names given to a unique and rare race of beings. Born as a wolf, their DNA alters throughout the years to become more human like. As an infant they are 100% wolf, but by the time they reach an elderly age, they are bipedal and appear as a crossbreed between human and lupine. They are extremely fast, which makes catching a glimpse of them very difficult.
3) Effect of the Moon: Very few people were born during a rare blue moon phenomenon. Those who survived grew into their teenage years as normal humans. Even in their youth they discovered that they had instincts and athletic ability beyond others their age. It is in their teenage years that they begin to experience something new. Each phase of the moon has a different effect on their DNA. A full moon changes them into a werewolf void of all reasoning, and blue moons, harvest moons, and other phases of lunar presence have different effects. One man even dared to make his way through school and by excelling as an astronaut, he was able to make it to the moon’s surface. Ever wonder what happens to a werewolf on the moon itself?
4) Mythological influence: Greeks and the Norse speak of two creatures. Cerberus and Fenrir stray from what is known to common man. In fact, they are abominations. Human male dna impregnating a female wolf created these wolf men. They are deadly and intelligent having the appearance of both parental traits as well as the instinct of an animal and thought/speech of a human. To anger them would be unwise.
5) Stories and Folklore: You may have heard of the fairy tales: The 3 Little Pigs, Little Red Riding Hood, Peter and The Wolf, The Strange Cast of Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde, and Sleeping Beauty, but they were more than just tales. They were true stories that happened quite differently than you’ve ever heard, and the werewolf is the center of them all.
6) Spirit Guide: Many native American Indians had the ability to channel a spirit guide. Those gifted with that of a wolf were able to summon all of a wolf’s abilities for their own use.
7) Changing at will: Some werewolves, bitten by the Experimental werewolf, can change form at will. They have a craving to feed on bone marrow that can sometimes take away their rationality.
8) Superior Werewolves: By experimenting on a vampire with various animal traits, the vampire takes in this super soldier purposed serum and is permanently changed into an Experimental werewolf. His height changes, he becomes androgenous, and exhibits many other enhanced abilities while fully comprehending his actions. His bite will turn any survivor into a werewolf. When a vampire drinks from this experimantal’s blood, they will exhibit a change. For example: a female vampire drinking the experimental’s blood will become a lycan queen. With six to eight breasts and a hideous look, this queen can telepathically communicate with anyone she changes into her minions.
9) Wargs: These are the Lycan queen’s minions. They were once human who are now oversized wolves. They obey her every command and can communicate telepathically with anyone in their army.
10) Historically: Werewolves have not just influenced tall tales. They have been prominent parts of our history on this planet. Charles Howard Bury chased them, The Garden of Eden was located by them, The Moonlight Battle during the Revolutionary war was won by them, and these are only some of the instances.
11) Latin Gang: Manada de Lobos is a Latino gang of murderers that killed those who disagreed with them in horrendous ways. The bodies of the victims were mutilated in such a way as to mimic that of a lupine attack. Each member of this gang bears at least one tattoo of a wolf, and they stay close to each other like a pack.
12) Silver: It is true that all werewolves can be killed by silver, however there are some types that can be killed my normal means as well.
Now you have an insight into what my werewolves are all about. The books reveal much more. Dan and I kept with our tradition, and celebrated a bottle of wine upon release of our third comic. This time we chose one that captured not just our werewolf, but the fairy tale aspect as well (you know, since werewolves are such an influence on them). Here are our favorites…
Rick’s best pick for werewolf video game is Van Helsing. His movie pick is the classic Lon Cheney WolfMan. Lucian from the Underworld films is his favorite werewolf. When it comes to books, Stephen King’s Silver bullet is his first choice.
Dan’s best pick for werewolf video game is Altered Beast. His movie pick is Teen Wolf with Michael J Fox. Beast from the X-Men is Dan’s pick for best werewolf. For books, Dan enjoys Zenescope Comics’ The Hunger.
What are your favorites? Are you a werewolf fan? Grab yourself a copy of “Bones At Breakfast” the novel. It is available at www.lulu.com in softback book and on www.amazon.com for the Kindle. Also, the spinoff comic book “Bones At Breakfast: In Case Of Werewolf” is available for purchase at www.indyplanet.com. Help support our bone cracking madness.
“Bones At Breakfast” and its spinoff are (C) 2012 by Rick Pipito. Stay tuned for our ghostly spotlight…
Halloween Spotlight: Zombies
My fascination with zombies began a while back. They are what made me decide to broaden my writing from just music to fiction. In early 2010 I began writing my first novel, and that was the beginning of the sCrypt world. Soon, fans began talking about my zombie stories, and they wanted more. I, being part egotist, didn’t want just that. As I moved onto the next topic for my novels, my brother, Dan, and I began writing and organizing our comic books.
Our horror world had been given birth. So what makes our zombies so special? Here’s a little insight into the Pipito mind. “Flesh And Leftovers” the novel, as well as it’s comic book spinoff “Zombie Incidents” takes a look at how the undead can coexist through all sorts of lore. Each incident describes a different cause/effect on humans.
1) A mutated strain of rabies: Animals are just as susceptible as humans to the rabies virus. A new strain that causes a very violent transformation within the brain, causes those infected to be extremely aggressive. Biting, thrashing, and yes even running human and animals have lost all reasoning, and have one purpose… to spread the rabies further, and quell their foaming mouths. Blunt trauma to the head is the best way to stop them, as their bodies do not feel the pain that a normal person would. The adrenaline coursing through them acts as a narcotic of sorts making them extremely dangerous.
2) Viral (from the infected’s eyes): Imagine having a sexual encounter and catching something; only the thing you catch is a virus that turns you into a flesh craving walker. As the brain begins to lose primary function, the human thought process remains. They can do little more than shuffle slowly after their prey. From the moment one becomes infected, their view on the world begins to change. All they desire is food. Even decapitation of these zombies does not fully kill them. They must have their brains destroyed.
3) Uber Dead: The demons of revelation possess four hosts. These possessed become much larger and stronger than any human. They think clearly about their purpose to end humanity, and can raise minions from graveyards or any other resting place. Although the minions are extremely weak, the demons themselves can mend body damage. For example… if an Uber dead were to lose a jaw, it could literally rip a healthy jaw from a living host and replace theirs like a twisted jigsaw.
4) Radioactive “Freaks”: A radioactive meteor decades ago infected one man’s blood. When he dies of a heart attack, the green blood within him reanimates his corpse. His rampage takes place in a special needs hospital, where the deformed patients become an even ghastlier site than he. These are your standard shuffling zombies, enhanced or hindered by their deformities.
5) Cannibals: A tribe deep within the Himalayan Mountains worships their god Rakshasa. None of them know who or what Rakshasa is, but they do his bidding. Kidnapping wanderers or villagers nearby, they offer their sacrifice to their god. Unable to see his face, they are then returned the corpse. The victim’s blood has been drained, and the villagers use the body as food and more. Their dissection and fileting tactics would make even Hannibal Lecter cringe. These are not the dead. They are humans with a different culture than what we see as standard.
6) Generation Z: Vaccines have been used for years, but every few years these shots that are designed to prevent sickness must be administered to children. The combination of the various strains in them has changed those under the age of thirteen into the walking dead. These dead devour living flesh. The virus is transmitted however differently among adults. A bitten adult will die within hours and never reanimate, while other youthful victims of a bite or fluid transmission, will become shufflers as well.
7) Drug induced: Although not a zombie, the victim of this drug hallucinates severely. They believe the extreme as if zombies are conspiring against them. All touch with reality will fade on a bad trip, and until the effects wear off, any person high on this drug will go as far to murder the healthy people around them, that they perceive as zombie threats. Once the effects are gone, the drug abuser’s brain liquefies within hours bringing death.
8) Voodoo (Macumba): When a black magic powder is used on unexpecting victims, they become zombi. While they remain alive, their comatose state makes them highly susceptible to suggestion.
9) Parasite: A tetrabite is a creature that originated from Martian soil. When it is freed from status, it quickly leaps onto its victim. After burying its tail into a human brain stem, it feeds off its host. Once attached, the host strives to reproduce more tetrabite parasites. The only way they can do this is through human saliva. The host’s bite becomes deadly and within hours, the next victim joins the parasite ranks.
10) The original zombies: Vampires warred with humans long ago. As the vampires turned new victims, and their offspring turned more, they began to change. By the sixth generation, vampires had become extremely different from their predecessors. These creatures no longer desired blood. They no longer thought freely. They no longer moved fluidly. Instead, the craved flesh, and moved slow with only the impulse to continue feeding on flesh (human or vampire).
11) Frankenzombie: Various body parts of dead men, stitched together to form one grotesque creature, and attached to a battery are brought back to life. But the already long dead parts have a mind of their own. The dead jigsaw man sees only death as it reaches to murder those nearby.
So there you have it folks. Those are the zombies in our universe. I have consulted Dan with his ideas to perfect the stories to his liking. When discussing the spinoff comic, they enjoyed an appropriate wine, pictured above. What makes us love zombies? Well, here are some of our favorite zombie related things…
Rick’s favorite zombie book is the Deadworld series by Joe McKinney. Always at the top of his zombie movie list (despite the low points) is the entire George A Romero Of The Dead series. His love for the genre began and continues with his favorite video game series Resident Evil. Solomon Grundy is his fan favorite pick for zombie of the year.
Dan’s favorite zombie book is World War Z by Max Brooks. At the top of his zombie movie list is 28 Days Later. His favorite video game in he series is Dead Island. Tar-man is his zombie of the year pick.
What are your favorites? Are you a zombie fan? Of course you are; so go grab yourself a copy of “Flesh and Leftovers” the novel. It is available at www.lulu.com in softback book and on www.amazon.com for the Kindle. Also, the spinoff comic book “Flesh and Leftovers: Zombie Incidents” is available for purchase at www.indyplanet.com. Help support our flesh eating madness.
“Flesh and Leftovers” and its spinoff are (C) 2010 by Rick Pipito. Stay tuned for our vampire breakdown…
novel – Devil’s Dessert
Written by Rick Pipito; Cover art by Dan Pipito
Print version $7.99 on www.lulu.com
$3.99 for Kindle at www.amazon.com
Pandora’s Box has been opened. Now humanity must face its darkest battle yet. The archangels of virtue and the demons of sin have come choose earthly hosts. It is a race against time for the legions of Heaven as they try to find the Sword of Eden. At the same time, the denizens of Hell attempt to locate the Spear of Destiny. These two artifacts could decide the war’s true victor.
While these gods fight for their own agendas, Gordon Lightcap must send his team of elite specialists to find what he believes will be the only thing that can save the human race.
The decisions made by humans will be crucial to the forces of Light and Darkness. Will the residents of Earth be virtuous, or will they give in to the seven deadly sins?
Each entity within will literally take the reader to heaven and hell, and back, as well as a close look at the true horror of it all.
***Although this book was meant to be read on its own, it is book 2 of a trilogy and book 5 of a series. Previous entries in the series include: “EDEN’S ORDER TRILOGY” & “SOULS 4 SUPPER” ***
novel – Souls 4 Supper
Available in softback for $7.99 at www.lulu.com
For the Kindle it is available for $3.99 at www.amazon.com
Written by Rick Pipito; Cover art by Dan Pipito
A new beginning has been granted to all humanity. After finding the Garden of Eden, illness and disease have been eradicated. Order has been restored, but when a decision is made to seek out balance, the quest to find chaos begins. As a damned soul struggles to make his return, Gordon Lightcap and his allies race to the lost city of Atlantis. Will they arrive in time to prevent the opening of the legendary Pandora’s Box? What dangers do they face and who can they trust?
Join humanity in a plot that intertwines ten short stories of ghosty hauntings and revelations. This is the world of “The Eternal Hunger Saga”
** This is Book one of a new trilogy, but book 4 of a series. If you have not read the first 3, then don’t worry, you can start here. Previous books in this series include: “Flesh And Leftovers,” “Blood, The Second Helping,” and “Bones At Breakfast”. **