And More:




When you're striking out into a new medium you shouldn't spend time worrying about what type of story you should tell. You should tell the story that speaks most strongly to you. Easy to say, not easy to practice when you've got a binder full of premises, treatments or half-cocked ideas. But sometimes it comes simply-- you need to pick a path and just go with it.

A lot of times for me it comes down to a feeling. And that's what TRUNKED is--  I wanted to do something noir, something rural, something inspired by the Elmore Leonard I was reading.  But mostly I wanted to dive into that claustrophobic groove that the whole idea of 'choice' seems to provoke in me--where you can have all the choices in the world and still feel trapped. So here we have Trunked-- an interactive fiction written in Twine.

I'm really happy with it turned out-- also with the reception-- that people seemed to really get it. 

Paul Hack from Indie said:

"TRUNKED puts you smack in the middle of a contemporary noir thriller where you are the antihero. It's essentially a point-and-click adventure game, but with words instead of graphics. Like a choose-your-own-adventure, as in most Twine games, you click certain highlighted passages of text to make a choice or otherwise continue the story. Text is actually the perfect medium for this particular game, since for most of it you are trapped within the dark confines of a car trunk (or "boot", for those English speakers across the pond).

The story is engaging and the tension is high, which is a tribute to the clear, screenplay-like writing of the game's author, Ian Daffern. You wake up in a trunk with no memory of how you got there. Using your wits and the contents of your pockets, you must figure out how you got into your current predicament and how to get out of it. Then you must face your captors."

Also got a nice mention over at Kil Screen that you can check out for yourself.  

Most importantly -- you can play it by clicking HERE

Let me know what you think in the comments.

If you're looking for more Twine fiction-- there's an excellent curated collection over at TwineHub that you can find here:





Coming soon--


I've got a new story coming out in an anthology this summer and it needs your help with our indie-go-go campaign: 

The book is called Monstrosity-- and it's inspired by all things Ooga Booga: " Monstrosity is a monster movie lovers dream. Godzilla vs. King Kong. Giant robots smashing through cities, Jason and the Argonauts battling sword and shield wielding skeletons.Those were the types of movies that fueled a love affair with monsters that provided the creative fuel that led to the creation of this graphic novel anthology, Monstrosity!"  

My story is called Hungry—and it's about a group of Bay street traders who own themselves a Wendigo-- a monster that X-Men readers might be familiar with, but I think we bring a whole new twist on it. The Wendigos are Native-American spirits of greed that are man-eaters, but there's also the idea that anyone lost in the woods who resorts to cannibalism can become one themselves. It's drawn by the amazingly talented Martin MacIntosh, who really shows his range with both comedy, and straight-up horror with his creature design. I think you'll find something really original here and with any luck be surprised right up until the end.

So help us out--and get yourself a book in the process! 

(There's more but seriously, these are the one's you need.) 


Story by Ian Daffern 

Art by Martin Macintosh 

August- 2013 - Fan Expo 


215 Ink - Ignition! In 5... 4... 3... 2...

Two years ago I went to the New York Comic Con and met the editors behind 215 Ink, a comics publisher of a some of today's best raw talent.

I was introduced by Shawn Alridge, who was a fellow competitor back in 2008 for our month on DC Comics' Zuda. His sci-fi pulp Vic Boone came to #2, my story Shock Effect made it to #3, and some terribly-drawn, ass-backwards-ly told story came in first, getting a full run on Zuda (you can read more about this mess here at Comic Book Resources). Shawn went on to complete his book and publish it through 215 Ink-- and it looks dynamite. 

And now 215 is putting out an anthology, It's joining 30+ other stories in IGNITION, a creator anthology in the spirit of things like Image's Popgun and Flight. 

Ignition includes an original story by me, and drawn by Shari Chankhamma. It's a thriller set on an island, where a BBC wildlife documentary goes off the rails when one of the producers thinks she's seeing a reall monster. Or is she? It's called Bird of Paradise--and was originally published my collection A Nail in the Heart

 Watch out-- it's hot! 

For more Ignition-- check out here. 


Freelance Blues: Santa Ex Machina

Merry Christmas readers and friends!

The holiday season is all about giving, so I wanted to share with you a special something from the Freelance Blues department.

Santa Ex Machina is an original short story inspired by a piece of Christmas creation drawn by Vicki Tierney and inked and coloured by Diego Moreno. 

Think of it as all the monster-fighting, terrible employment excitement you love, only this time wearing a red and white felt hat--kind of our version of 'A Christmas Carol'

And you can download Santa Ex Machina Here! 





In Development: PIN 

It's always exciting to see something new. 

That's the best thing about writing comics--the thrill you get when you recieve new pages. 

You can imagine it, you can dream it in your head, you can put down the most perfect script there is, but when it comes to art, there's always a little bit of magic that comes out of a collaboration. 

PIN is a supernatural short story that I wrote this summer, drawn by my friend Ho Anderson. This is a big deal as Ho, who is known for the landmark biography of Martin Luther King (KING) and more recently the supernatural thriller SAND & FURY, has largely retired from comics to focus on filmmaking as a writer and director. 

Right when he showed me the breakdown of the thumbnails, it was incredible--the point of view, the angles used for each panel nailed each moment of the story so perfectly to get the best effect.

I suggested that his skill as a cartoonist, the ability to find the best way to convey a moment, is transferable to his new role as director. Ho replied: 

"It's the same thing, man." 

So there you go. 

In PIN-- two would-be thugs pick-on the wrong target and an ATM heist turns into a supernatural nightmare. Will any of them get out alive? Only if they know the code...

PIN is part of my new short story collection A NAIL IN THE HEART II, coming in 2013.

Also, not to give too much away, but Ho draws some hella scary monsters, tapping into his inner Del Toro. You'll want to check this out for sure.