I don’t normally write fan-fiction, as I kind of think, what’s the point in spending so much time and effort creating something if it doesn’t really belong to you, and you can’t sell it or publish it or take real ownership of any of the characters? Of course, that’s a somewhat reductive view of creativity, as art should be for its own sake at the end of the day. And spurred by something I read online, I was tempted to have a crack at writing an in-universe story.
The following is a very short tale set at a specific point within the timeline of the original Marvel Transformers comic. If you’re not quite heavily “into” Transformers, it probably won’t make a lick of sense. But I’d written it, it was kicking about, I thought, hey, why not stick up on t’Tumblr?
Top Ten Comic Books DC Could Add to the New 52
According to this article at Bleeding Cool, DC’s New 52 will soon be down to just 45 titles. Well, obviously a Top Ten is more than seven, but if DC wants to keep it at 52 titles (and disregarding any weekly-book rumours), here are ten characters and concepts that they could consider picking from.
Top Ten Songs I Sing to My Baby Daughter
To get her to sleep.
Top Ten Kids’ Show Theme Tunes
Specifically, those with lyrics. Also I’ve disqualified The Real Ghostbusters as that was a movie theme tune before it was a cartoon.
Here’s a picture of Heat Wave that I sketched quickly and coloured in Photoshop.
Heat Wave is a Transformer, one of the Rescue Bots, which is a line of preschool Transformer toys Hasbro created a couple of years ago. I bought Heat Wave for my nephew’s second birthday this week, and decided to treat him to a little David Heslop original artwork whilst I was at it. As his godfather, I feel it’s important to educate him in the finer things in life, and Transformers obviously is one of them. Also, I like drawing new Transformers.
Anyway, his reaction upon seeing the toy - it was a fire engine, one of his favourite things, but also a robot - really distilled why Transformers is so effortlessly cool. Kids love cars, and kids love robots, and these things are both! At the same time!
Now, my love of Transformers probably started with the cartoon and was supported by the excellent toys, but the fact that I’m still obsessed thirty years later is primarily down to the comics, and almost entirely down to one man: Simon Furman. Furman wrote Transformers for years, and is responsible for the weight of the mythology that still exists to this day. From championing second-string characters to redefining the mythology to creating new concepts to killing off fan favourites left and right, it was his comics that made me love comics, and in a wider sense, made me love fiction. There was something about his rather melodramatic style and hyperbolic turn of dialogue that has always appealed to me, and I think it’s really, really influenced how I write now and the sort of fiction I enjoy. I mean, when I look at my favourite Shakespeare plays, for God’s sake, I notice the same patterns - doomed heroes fighting till their last breath? Tragic figures striving for redemption? The search for humanity within great evil? Melodramatic and bombastic monologues? We’re talking Macbeth, Hamlet, Lear, Scorponok, Grimlock, and Galvatron.
I hope little Aleksi loves Heat Wave the way I loved Optimus Prime and Bumblebee in 1984. I promise if ever I have the opportunity to write Transformers, I’ll try to get Heat Wave into the comic. And I hope the brand, the toys, and above all the comic, endures for another three decades or more.
Top Ten Moments in All-Star Superman as Represented by a Line of Dialogue
It was Superman’s 75th birthday this week, so to celebrate, here are my favourite moments from my favourite Superman story.
Top Ten Moments in the Ghostbusters Movies, as Represented by a Line of Dialogue
Time is running out for Share a Story 2013!
The competition, which is all kinds of fantastic, closes this week. You need to get your entries in to us (well, technically to the lovely guys n gals at First Light) by 5pm on Friday.
I want more entries than last year so if there’s a child in your life aged 5-12, give them a polite kick up the backside and get them to send their entry off pronto.
Remember, if they win, CITV will turn their story into an animation! They’ll be a legend in their own lunchtime. There’s no reason not to do it.