What’s Mike Baron doing?
Nexus, Badger and Punisher writer Mike Baron has organized The Fort Collins (Colorado) Comics Collective with writers Pete Brandvold and artists Nick Runge, Gabe Eltaeb, and Kevin Caron — plus Scott Bieser, who lives in nearby Cheyenne and doesn’t know he’s a member.
"Nick Runge had two paintings of undersea creatures in a downtown gallery," Mike Baron noted. "They popped. The color, the line reminded me of Frazetta. I sought Nick out. He was working in the kitchen of an institutional facility washing dishes. He’d never thought about drawing comics. He went home from our initial meeting and threw together a comic page based on The Last Samurai.
"Nick and I are about to dive into Black Ice, a heroic fantasy I created with Nick in mind. The publisher will be announcing its release shortly," Baron stated.
As for Pete Brandvold, Baron remembers he "sat across from me during my first Poudre Valley Authors’ Day. We hit it off and became friends. (Poudre Valley Authors’ Day was a humbling experience. I was thrilled to be invited. Then I learned how many authors had been invited. Six hundred.) Pete began work on a Rogue Lawman comic with artist Jeremy Delagarza, but Jeremy took a job-in Milwaukee!-and shipped out. Enter Gabe Eltaeb. Gabe and I have just finished a five issue run of The Hook on www.bigheadpress.com. The Hook will appear as a paper book."
Also forthcoming from the Fort Collins Comics Collective: Lord of the High Country, a sweeping historical novel that takes place in the nineteenth century. Val Mayerik is the artist, joining Mike Baron as writer. "Those of you who don’t know about Val are about to be stunned. He’s one of those rare comic book artists who keep on improving," Mike said.
"Three years ago Sam Sala, Randy Yeates and I began work on a comic strip called Noizy Planet. "The Zebulons of Zub have established a listening post to monitor the noisiest planet in the galaxy." Shopped that sucker coast to coast. Not a nibble. Couple weeks ago Randy calls me up. He has sold the comic to The Chronicle, a new weekly.
The highly-anticipated return of Nexus will appear before next year’s San Diego Convention. "The script I originally wrote, which I posted on my website, is not as good as the script Dude forced me to write. Oh do not tell him," Baron admitted, "for he will crow ’til time immemorial. It wasn’t that the first script wasn’t good. It was just a stand-alone story with no further implications. Dude browbeat me into writing something much bigger. For further information, go over to www.steverude.com and sign up for the newsletter."