The Informal History of ScriptGraphics.
The first ScriptGraphics creators were originally from a fandom that existed in the days of Phil Seuling's Conventions; Alan Light's Buyers Guide for Comic Fandom and all the original mimeographed fanzines of yesteryear. There were only three ScriptGraphics creators then and they started with an 8 and a half by 11 inch, 13 page fanzine that contained all their hopes and dreams for fame and fortune and they called it ScriptGraphics. (It was going to be called Script to Graphics, which was shortened to ScriptoGraphics but the sound of the wording was deemed to bulky. Taking out the ‘o’ gave it a faster sound and was more to the point of what they were out to do).
Keith Royster, Howard Small and Darrell Goza were all at the end of their last year of high school at the time they started ScriptGraphics and lost Howard before the completion of the first issue because of his moving out of state to attend college. Keith and Darrell completed a second full issue before Keith too went out of state to school and Darrell didn't have the time to do ScriptGraphics and college, so ScriptGraphics had to go.
Years later, while in a music store, Darrell stumbled across a digest sized fanzine called Bobby Sommerkamp's Super Chicks. The art was horrendous and the story made no sense but the excitement inherent in the product made him giddy. Was this the format of the future of fandom? He had the foresight to register the ScriptGraphics name when they first started the endeavor but out of respect for the others involved in it's creation he told them of his intention to revive the ‘company'.
Howard's heart belonged to engineering and Keith didn't have time. Keith did agree to submit artwork from time to time, schedule permitting, and Darrell told him that he'd hold him to it. Thus was born the second generation of ScriptGraphics! Darrell modified the format to the Digest format (8 and a half by 11 inches, folded in half) to save money (not many of us small press publishers will ever get rich off of this) and placed some ads in the adzines (ad fanzines) of the day. ScriptGraphics, or SG for short, got quite a few inquiries and Darrell sent stories as well as the ScriptGraphics policy and intention statements to all interested parties. Now began the mix and match stage of placing artists with inkers and matching those art teams with stories that best fit an art teams style of storytelling. (I'm sure many of you have been there).
During this time he also began to align himself with fan groups and publishers who were doing digest formatted books also. It was a fun time where money wasn't as much a concern as the burning need for the creators to have their voices heard through the work they did. He joined Interfan, which at that time was acting as a semi-pro art placement agency and through them he also did art for many of the fanzines being published at that time.
Darrell also set up correspondence with many of the producers of the fanzines and gained access to their art pools and gave them access to his.
The first book to be published by the new ScriptGraphics during this time was `The Professionals'. Darrell did the story and art on that issue and the next two in the series and even though the storyline was never finished, it was modestly successful and led to ScriptGraphics presents `The Destiny Squad' featuring Quasar. Here's some inside info: Quasar was the first story to be printed in the first book to ever be published by ScriptGraphics!
That first story had been left open ended and never finished back then but he could see that there was a much bigger story in it so he created a much larger framework for the story and was able to wrangle some of the finest talent of the time to illustrate it. Willie Peppers, a phenomenal talent and fan favorite artist, did the art chores on book two: ScriptGraphics presents `The Destiny Squad' featuring PowerHawk. Jim Saldana, another fan favorite and creator of his own line of digest fanzines called Target Comics, did book three: ScriptGraphics presents `The Destiny Squad' featuring WhiteFire, which my humble self inked. Keith Royster came back to ink, along with Darrell doing layouts and background inks, John Brown for book four: ScriptGraphics presents `The Destiny Squad' featuring Omni-Man. Willie Peppers returned for 'The Conclusion' of the story line in book five. Book six explored the ramifications of all the books before it as all the characters returned 'Home'. It featured art by another fan favorite, Nick "Nasty" Alenikov Jr., as well as a return by Keith Royster, me, Darrell Goza, Ben Collins and a new talent sensation David Amaker, who had been doing work with the independent publisher Beatnik Publications.
While those books were being produced, a separate series of books was also being produced. Jeff Wilcox, another fan favorite, was brought in on pencils with me and Ben Collins on inks for the first issue. That three issue series was titled Psi-Girl. David McClain was brought on to ink the second issue of the series over Jeff's pencils and John Brown pencilled the final issue, which Darrell inked.
ScriptGraphics Presents became a title in it's own right and was a continuation of the original ScriptGraphics books which started the ScriptGraphics line of books and even picked up the numbering at three. The first of the new 'SG Presents' was a portfolio issue featuring much of the unseen work from Darrell's fanzine work for independent publishers and his work during the convention years. It also contained proposals done for submission to the major comic companies as well as the first completed comic story he'd ever done. That was a story he'd done for Interfan and that story was lettered by the one and only Dave Sim of Cerebus the Aadvark fame.
ScriptGraphics four and five has contributions from a round robin of creators that have done work for and with us over the years and continues to this day. While all of this was going on, Darrell enlisted the assistance of another editor, who brought a vision of his own to the table. 'Conniption Fits' was the first book to be assembled, edited and compiled by Ruben George Toyos. He put together quite a package, which of course no one could know at the time, would be from creators that would become the professionals of today. It was ahead if it's time.
All of these books were rotated monthly or as soon as they were produced. Over the years the frequency of the book slowed because Darrell, who'd gone on to become a behind the scene professional at many of the major comic publishers, found the schedule to be too hard to maintain on a monthly, bi-monthly or even quarterly schedule. He kept his hand in by publishing when he could and alway managed at least two books a year.
I re-met him at a book publishing convention and we revisited old times. I was looking into the comic industry since a lot of properties in book publishing and film were coming from the comic book arena and Darrell opened a path into that world for me. It was an eye opening experience as my only experience with independent comics was doing the fanzines of yesteryear through ScriptGraphics. I became an editor of the next generation of products and are spear heading the online transition of that fanzine material as well as brokering some of the new stuff that will be coming.
2014 ushers in its first standard, comic sized publication to carry the ScriptGraphics logo banner: Star Angels/The Sight. No longer just doing 'fanzine' material, ScriptGraphics is now a bonafide publisher of comic content material.
To make a long story short, we're also online with 'FREE' content and are pushing for a lot of that content to be in color. We're also currently accessing the possibility of doing the second story line of the Destiny Squad series which Darrell had plotted out even before the end of the first series of digest Destiny Squad books. A lot of publishers are looking at all the digital media as revenue generating avenues but are paying little or no attention to the content of the products they're producing. Far too many of the books read like inside jokes that only those connected to the producers will understand.
The ScriptGraphics mandate is to concentrate solely on producing interesting content first and foremost, THEN look into the avenues of delivering it to the public for financial gain. We want to do a year's worth of free material to streamline the process and develop the content [ http://adapt-it.weebly.com/the-adapt-project-strips.html ]. At least for now.
Additionally, we're also exploring how to bring prose content to the digital arena for those creators that don't have access to an illustrator: ScriptGraphics: Text Novels gives you this prose form and is open to any writer willing to tell their story and have it posted online. Some of these books are helmed by some of todays brightest creators: Mark Wayne Harris, John S. Brown, Keith Royster and David McClain, just to name a few. If you think you have the passion, join the fray!
Enjoy the sneak peeks.
More will be coming soon!
ScriptGraphics Editor in Chief