Friday, March 05, 2010

Punisher MAX Butterfly Pick Of The Week On G4's Fresh Ink!

Blair Butler just picked Punisher MAX: Butterfly as her Pick Of The Week on G4's Fresh Ink Blog!

She also had some good words for Girl Comics #1!

I...gah! I just feel really good right now. That's all.

Another Punisher MAX: Butterfly Review

From the 13 Minutes blog:

"If there’s more where this came from, then she can easily hold her own with the likes of Greg Rucka, Brian Michael Bendis, Brian Azzarrello, and Jason Aaron. This book was very weighty and absolutely worth the $4.99 price tag, feeling like a novel’s worth of content hiding in the confines of a pamphlet, transcending those disposable trappings. This is something unique and extraordinary. I can’t wait for her next project; I wonder if she has an ongoing in her or this was an isolated explosive bout of creativity. Either way, I’ll cherish this."

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Reviews For Punisher: Butterfly & Girl Comics #1

I want to thank everyone who has supported Girl Comics #1 & Punisher MAX: Butterfly: your emails, Tweets, and Facebook messages are deeply appreciated. Thanks to those who came out to attend the signing at Jim Hanley's Universe, and thanks to Jim Hanleys for really doing a great job and making us at Girl Comics feel very welcome!

And these stories would not have been possible without the talented artists, Nikki Cook & Laurence Campbell, who brought them to life, and editorial teams who were smart, sensitive, and very supportive.

First, some "Butterfly" reviews:

On a review posted on the iFanboy site, The Last Champion wrote:
"It takes a lot of guts to publish a comic that doesn't have the title character in it. It all depends on whether the story ends up being good to justify the 'disappearance'. I'm not familiar with the work of Valerie D'Orazio but I will say one thing about her writing skills. She could've made this a story about a random thug in the MAX universe and I'd still be intrigued to read it."

Dan Philips @IGN gave it an 8 out 10:
"Having read Valerie D'Orazio's Occasional Superheroine blog and her Goodbye to Comics series of posts in particular, I fully expected her mainstream comics debut to be as unflinching and unapologetic as anything she's written about herself or the comics industry. I just didn't expect it to be as impressive and polished as Punisher MAX: Butterfly is. D'Orazio doesn't just channel the same passionate, extremely personal style of writing she's shared over the Net into a crime story set in the periphery of the Punisher MAX universe, she also makes it a slick moving, intricately layered page-turner. It's one hell of a read."

And The Reverend's Weekly Comic Reviews at Comics Con Queso wrote a somewhat spoilery review:

"I think this book simply proves my point that the Punisher is only as interesting as the people he kills. Garth Ennis knew this. Jason Aaron knows this. And Valerie D’Orazio knows this."

Next, a smattering of Girl Comics #1 reviews. Me & artist Nikki Cook did the Punisher story.

IGN's Miguel Perez enjoyed Girl Comics #1, writing:

Like any good collection, Girl Comics #1 offers a fantastic mixture of art, subject matter and tone. There truly is something for everybody in this book."

Perez went on to say:
"If I have to pick a favorite, I'd go with the Punisher story by Valerie D'Orazio and Nikki Cook. This hilarious short story used juxtaposition wonderfully as I just could not stop laughing at the sight of both men getting ready for their eventual confrontation. Little artistic details like the clown shower curtain and the guy's creepy pedo-smile made this story stand out for me. What can I say, I'm a sucker for a good Punisher story."

The Nerdy Bird from Has Boobs, Reads Comics called Girl Comics "great" and went on to declare it "the Tampax Pearl of...girl comics." For the guys reading this, trust me, comparing it to the Pearl is big endorsement.

Randy Lander wrote in his blog,
"...some great art throughout, and is worth it for the "posies" panel in Valerie D'Orazio's story and the Colleen Coover intro pages alone."

And @LarrysComics Tweeted:
"How do you illustrate the "SOUL" of a character in 4 #comics pages? Ask @ValerieDOrazio She SHOULD be writing the ongoing Punisher series"

Overall, I'm pretty happy with the buzz, and really just grateful that I have been given the opportunity to write this stuff. That's pretty much it. I know my life has had its ups and downs, but in the end, I think I turned out to be a very lucky and blessed person.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Who Is This Valerie D'Orazio Anyway?

I'm totally not making a duck face in this pic

This is just an introduction to my site & who I am, as a refresher:

I'm a lifelong comic book fan. I owned a Mego Batmobile, was a Marvel Age penpal, and did my 6th grade "People I Admire" report on Stan Lee. I also sent Marvel a pitch for a Punisher story when I was 12 or 13; in response they offered me an internship (I was too young to accept).

I studied American Lit in college, with a special interest in Mark Twain, the Beat Generation, and Comics-As-Literature. Spent a summer semester studying Shakespeare in England. Was on an honors track for grad school. Dumped it all to go work at Acclaim Comics in 1996.

From 1996-1998 I worked as an assistant editor at Acclaim (formerly Valiant). I was there for the planning stages of the relaunch, and watched as each Valiant character was rebooted to become an Acclaim character; I always found that the most interesting part of my tenure there. I assisted on their Disney and Classics Illustrated lines, as well as Magnus Robot Fighter, Shadowman, and Master Darque.

When the larger part of Acclaim Comics folded in '98, I went into advertising and marketing. Within weeks of receiving my big promotion at my marketing job, I sent out a number of "cold call" letters to various DC and Marvel editors looking for work. Within two days of sending out these letters, I received 3 calls from DC and ended up with interviews with 5 different editors by the next week.

In 2000 I was hired as the Creative Service Coordinator at DC Comics. Within a year or so, I became an assistant editor, and soon I was involved with the "rebooting" of the DC line by new hire Dan DiDio. I assisted on such books as Batman Black & White, The New Frontier, Aquaman, JLA, Rose & Thorn, and a bunch more. I also did full editing duties on Arkham Asylum: Living Hell and Human Defense Corps. In 2004, me & DC parted ways. The last book I worked on at DC was Identity Crisis.

I briefly had a comics column at the old Silver Bullet Comics site, then started this blog, Occasional Supeheroine. In November '06 I deleted the contents of my blog and started a series of posts called "Goodbye To Comics." These posts quite frankly and sometimes graphically described a series of misadventures I had that were all comic book related. The posts caused quite a stir.

That began about 3+ years of steady posting on this blog, which had started to develop a cult following. Out of all the posts I ever did, the one on Supergirl remains my favorite. It started with me bemoaning the sexualized depiction of Supergirl, and ended with me (in real time, as I wrote the post) realizing that I was the one at DC who suggested that cheesecake artist Ed Benes take over the flagging Supergirl title in the first place. That tension and ambivalence between feminist ideals and comic book realities is one I own wholeheartedly and don't apologize for.

If I had to categorize this blog, it would be "Feminist Comic Book Blog That Mostly Men Read." I would say that out of all the fan email I get, over 75 percent are from guys. You would think those emails would include some weird stuff, but that's happened very very rarely. I've grown up around (mostly male) hard core comic book fans; that's the culture I know, the culture of the neighborhood comic shop. I think often what I write reflects the nexus point (or collision) between that world and women's issues that I've experienced/care about.

In 2009 I offered as an eBook "Memoirs of An Occasional Superheroine," which expanded on themes introduced in Goodbye To Comics. You can download it for free, until mid-March, here.

In March 2010, my one-shot Punisher MAX: Butterfly was released, as well as a short story also featuring the Punisher in the Marvel anthology Girl Comics #1. In May 2010, my one-shot X-Men Origins: Emma Frost, will hit stands.

What's next for me? I'm not really sure. Maybe I will have a long illustrious comic book writing career. Maybe I won't. Maybe I'll have a baby. Maybe I'll go back to that graduate school plan I abandoned so many years ago. I've always wanted to break into horror movie/comics fandom, so maybe I'll look into that. Maybe I'll go write that sequel to Goodbye To Comics. And get the house painted.

Last story, that I've never told before: many years ago, when I first started using the Internet, I had created my own religion on MySpace. Honest to God. I mean, it had just started with me posting some anonymous stuff on philosophy, metaphysics, a few predictions, stuff like that. And then I got a following. And then things got weird, with people depending on me for insights, and the way I dealt with it was running away. Because I was just so freaked out by it. I'd make a lousy L. Ron Hubbard, I guess. So I ran away. And then I went to another New Age type forum, and then inadvertently started it all over again. And ran away. And then I gave that all up and started comic book blogging. This is the longest I ever stuck with anything like this. I guess that's what I'm trying to say.

Thanks, to those who have stuck with it. We'll see how far it goes.

"This was your idea. If you don't like your ideas, stop having them."
--Ginger Snaps

(I was going to make this a link section to all my interviews, etc., but if you just Google my name you'll get more links and info than you would ever need or hope for.)

Monday, March 01, 2010

The OS Journal, 3/1/10

Let's comics are coming out in two days and I'm as anxious as hell. It's a good anxious, but it's still anxiousness. It's like waiting for Christmas Day if you were waiting for Christmas day for 30 years.

I just made an appointment to get my hair done by a place that does NOT resemble the reliable, safe neighborhood salon. We will see how that goes. All I know is, I will not look the same when I leave there. I don't know if that's good or bad. The last cut I got, I was so neurotic about Change that I had them take like an inch off and just paid them and ran out. You couldn't even tell the difference. So now my hair is exceptionally long and shapeless. It's when I break the ponytail out that I admit defeat. You pull that hair back and spray it into place – done! Defeat! Then: walk of shame into salon.

Watched "Julie and Julia" yesterday. Thought they could do a "Goodbye To Comics" version where footage of Frank Castle taking down a Columbian drug cartel is intercut with me learning to use Blogger for the first time. "Look honey: I got a comment! From someone who didn't know me! (squee!)" Then: a safehouse in the middle of the jungle blows up. It's genius I tell you. Someone alert Sony.


My Munden's Bar with Martha Thomases going live was a welcome surprise. Norm did a great job didn't he? He was a real trooper. I remember seeing the first pages for this story come out, and spitting coffee all over the keyboard. And yes, it should be remembered here: Martha did create Dakota North in the 1980s. There was a lot of great female characters back then; somebody on the ComicMix boards mentioned "Whisper," and that's really true. Whisper was a GREAT book.

Ah, Sean Kleefeld has just sent me a mock-up of how I might look like in a post-disco Dazzler cut:

You know, that really ain't too bad. Now here is the BORIS original of that art:

If I could get that butt, plus the know, and the light powers...

Oh, and ordered my iPhone today. That's right. No more land-line. Change: it's scary, but fun too!

More reports as they unfold!


More Man-Crotch Than You Will Ever See In One Comic

ComicMix presents...a Thomases/D'Orazio/Breyfogle production...Munden's Bar in "Good For The Goose."

I've always been a big fan of Norm Breyfogle's comic work, so I got a big kick out of working on this.

Yeah, that's me in the t-shirt.

Bonus question: what Marvel heroine did Martha Thomases co-create in the 1980s?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Link To Punisher Butterfly Preview Pages

UPDATE: You can also find previews for BUTTERFLY at:
I'm starting to get a bunch of personal emails coming in about the preview, and I'm just very encouraged. I was very very happy with the way this book was handled by Marvel. And there was really no other artist who could bring this story to life the way Laurence Campbell did.

If there is anybody who has the preview up on their site that I've missed, please let me know and I'll link to you!

Hey all,

The French website Superpouvoir has a bunch of lettered pages from PUNISHER MAX: BUTTERFLY upon their site. So if you want to read the beginning of this book, out next week (March 3), here is your chance. Glory in the awesomeness that is Laurence Campbell artwork!

Please be advised tho, that, like other MAX titles, this book is for adults and the preview itself is NSFW (language, violence, a hint of sex). With that proviso: go check it out!


And let me know what ya think!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Second Life Of Speedy Gonzales

Classic Looney Tunes mouse Speedy Gonzales will soon be headed to theater near you. Will the movie be a CGI/live-action combo in the mold of Scooby-Doo, Garfield, and Alvin and the Chipmunks? Oh yes it will. Comedian/talk show host George Lopez is slated to do the voice of Speedy, and the premise will be updated for a modern audience.

Assuring that this new version won't feature "the racist Speedy," co-producer Ann Lopez had this to say to The Hollywood Reporter:

"Speedy's going to be a misunderstood boy who comes from a family that works in a very meticulous setting, and he's a little too fast for what they do."

Speedy has faced criticism over the years for what some consider to be a stereotypical and offensive portrayal of Mexicans. In fact, in 1999 the Warner Bros.-owned Cartoon Network stopped airing Looney Tunes featuring Speedy. In a 2002 interview with Fox News, a spokesperson for Cartoon Network commented,

"It hasn't been on the air for years because of its ethnic stereotypes. We have such a huge library, I think we intend to go with popular shows that aren't going to upset people. We're not about pushing the boundary. We're not HBO."

In that same interview, the spokesperson admitted that in Cartoon Network Latin America Speedy Gonzales was "hugely popular." And in 2009 the same spokesperson said regarding Speedy's immanent return to the network: "With the sudden interest in the show, we decided to rotate it in and see how it does." Of course, this was now the network which was home to The Venture Bros., Family Guy, and Robot Chicken – so perhaps their vigilance against "pushing boundaries" had loosened.
Though the initial Speedy cartoons were entertaining enough – with the self-titled 1955 cartoon short winning the Academy Award – I've always related them not so much with racism as with the end of the golden age of the Warner Bros cartoon shorts. By the 1960s, the animation studio leaned heavily on the poorly-matched duos of Speedy/Daffy & Speedy/Sylvester, as well as Road Runner cartoons. Sometimes, to be really creative, they'd mix Speedy with Road Runner, or have Speedy/Daffy/Sylvester/Road Runner in the same cartoon. The production values on many of these cartoons had rapidly fallen since the heyday of Chuck Jones, and it really shows:

Note the awkward, stilted way Daffy Duck walks and talks, the corny special effects, and terrible background music. But this was an era in which TV cartoons – with their limited budgets – had become the dominant medium, so I guess it makes sense. These newer Warner Bros. cartoons were tailor-made for TV, not the movie theaters.

The point is, in the 1960s it was Speedy Gonzales – and not Bugs Bunny – who was the Warner Bros. star character. Speedy's dominance of the Looney Tunes slate pointed to his massive popularity. So who am I to second-guess the WB's decision in 2010 to make a major motion picture out of the character?

But in the battle over whether Speedy is racist, or the victim of overly-zealous political-correctness, I'm not sure what message this new movie is trying to send. By vocally making it clear that the movie will not feature "the racist Speedy," the film's producers are separating the character out from his classic cartoon roots. That's fine, but does that separation potentially alienate Speedy's fanbase, which apparently includes many viewers from Mexico? Is this reboot a validation of the enduring popularity of the character, or a condemnation of the character as it was originally conceived? Or is there a way to strike a balance?

Do you think Speedy Gonzales is racist, or is it all much ado about nothing? And what do you think of the character's new direction?

Monday, February 15, 2010

Emma Frost And Me

hey, look what I just found on CBR...


Penciled by KARL MOLINE
Witness the birth of the White Queen! From the mousy girl from a rich New England family, to the rich and terrifying queen of a secret society to the leader of the X-Men, Emma has cut a powerful swath through the Marvel Universe. See her rise to power in this one-shot by up-and-comer Valerie D’Orazio and Karl Moline (LONERS, Buffy)!
48 PGS./One-Shot/Rated A …$3.99

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

The OS Journal, 2/9/10

So I finally got this used pair of sneakers in the mail that I bought on eBay, and there's old bloodstains on one of them. Golly. Other than that, they're pretty nice, and have been hardly worn at all. They make my feet itch.


That the author of the Yahoo Shine article on the Midwich Cuckoo/"Young Hollywood" Vanity Fair cover is getting death threats is It's just messed up in every which way. When you get to death threats, abusive's not even about the topic anymore. It's just about wanting to get your anger out, to kick someone's teeth in for something and against someone that isn't even there anymore. It's projection.
That said, I don't believe Vanity Fair should have purposely looked for one or two people of color for that cover just to meet a diversity quota. If the editorial staff at Vanity Fair itself (yeah, and Hollywood as well) were diverse, it would have naturally carried over to their content. That's what you want. It starts in editorial, and it starts with the writers and even photographers. Diversity is something that should be organic as the result of your editorial/creative team. Of course, who hires the editorial/creative team? And who casts the movies in Young Hollywood? Does diversity need to be purposely encouraged somewhere up the ladder? Maybe.

Vanity Fair's "Young Hollywood" for 2012

The very biggest mistake Vanity Fair made with that cover, however, is that it is as boring as hell.


I just don't understand how persons defending a certain point of view would want to attack and make fun of the other side instead of trying to communicate with them. How is this a sane or productive tactic? I mean, do you want to seem cool to the choir and get high-fives for being snarky, or do you want to actually start changing hearts and minds? I just don't understand it. It seems so backward. There's just so few communicators that can reach both sides; there seems to be so little in it for the person who wishes to go about it this way. That's why when I see Obama attacked from both sides, I think: "He was just too damn reasonable." Reasonable doesn't "sell." Batshit insane angry sells.

And yet, I believe that the majority of persons in the United States are far more open to alternate points of view than people think. But you just can't approach them and go: "Hey, idiot: you're a fucking moron. Listen to me."

Do you want to sell a billion books and hit the top of Amazon? Write a political book called "Hey Idiot: You're A Fucking Moron." I'd be as cynical as hell about it, I'd write two versions of the exact same book, one attacking the Left & one attacking the Right:

Or I'd leave the specifics out of the book and let people think I'm supporting their cause and attacking their enemies. And I'd make a billion million dollars.

You know, that book title is way too long. Very unTwitterable. Lemmie change that:

"Hey Morans!"

There we go.


If Dan DiDio is pushing "Watchmen 2," then it's probably going to happen, and you should just accept it. There's just no convincing him.


I'm a bit of a morans, and haven't yet realized The Beat has moved over to Adjust your bookmarks accordingly.


Well, the mail is here with the used pair of jeans I bought off of eBay. Hoping for no bloodstains. I'll let you know how it goes. I really want to save money and help the environment by shopping "vintage," but honestly I'm getting a little skeeved the fuck out.

Friday, February 05, 2010

The OS Journal 2/5/10

Preparing the last book of "The End of the Vampire Craze In New York" and posting it today (hopefully). Response has been good. It's a very very weird book, so I don't really feel like emailing my friends through a Facebook fan page and saying: "hey! you should read this now!" You know, it's like if I was Lars von Trier and I created a Facebook fan page for "Antichrist" and then you got this unsolicited email in your Inbox that said: "Lars requests you be a fan of Antichrist." And because you are a Facebook friend, you felt you needed to sit through the scene where the lady smashes Willem Dafoe's nads with a rock even though it made you very uncomfortable; you know, just to show your support. Because I, as Lars van Trier, might run into you one day at Ditmas Park and quiz you on the movie just to see how attentive you are to your Facebook friends.

Sometimes I wonder why I couldn't just be the writer of like "Happy Fun Ball" or something. You know, have the facility to churn out these rollicking adventures. I've been thinking about all this a lot lately. My literary idol in college was William Burroughs. I was already writing a bit in his style before I discovered him at the library. So when I saw that this guy was writing similar to me I felt great, because I felt somebody understood. But my professors absolutely hated Burroughs. They hated Burroughs and comics. Not "real" literature.

And I tried to read "Naked Lunch" on a plane once to distract myself from a panic attack I was having, and it just about made me lose my shit. But I love the idea that a book – a simple book – can make somebody lose their shit just by its words; almost put the reader in an altered state of consciousness. Burroughs did that. Lovecraft is the master of that, and Poe is really good too. There's an author named Dennis Cooper who wrote this book called Period. The book is a total mind-fuck. I bought it and threw it away on two separate occasions. Just because it frightened me to have it in the house, as if it was some sort of grimoire. There comes a point during this short novel where the story loops in on itself, and it just fucks you up.

I'll probably buy that book again.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Watchmen Sequel

I've been hearing all this stuff recently about a possible sequel/series to the original Watchmen.

You know, as long as the contracts square up, DC is totally within their rights to make a sequel & take advantage of the prospect of a franchise for these characters.

The question is: will doing so, without the input of Moore/Gibbons, hurt the brand? I mean: hurt the brand with people who will matter, people who will spread negative word-of-mouth on this project?

That's the question.

I mean, even if someone like Grant Morrison stepped up on the plate for this. Morrison would look like a xxxxx writing a sequel to Watchmen that Moore didn't approve of. It'd be big shoes to fill for anyone. It's like me announcing I was hired to write Persepolis 2. It sucks, it feels cheap.

Here's how'd I do it:

You put out one book for each character, either a mini-series or a one-shot. Put them out one week after another, like an event:

Week One: Ozymandias
Week Two: Dr. Manhattan
Week Three: Silk Spectre
Week Four: Rorschach
Week Five(?) Nite Owl

That way, you spread the blame around to four or five writers, it doesn't seem quite as egregious as hiring one guy to do "Watchmen 2."

Then from there do an overall "event," but don't call it "Watchmen 2."

The key is not to say this is an official sequel to "Watchmen." Just put all this stuff out and gauge fan reaction. If they threaten to burn down DC: pull back. If not, sign Morrison/Quietly on "Watchmen 2."

Please understand, I'm not advocating this course of action. I'm very fine with there never being a sequel to this classic series.

But I'm just saying, for sake of argument.

/Watchmen Babies.
///oh fuck it, here's a hat tip to Bleeding Cool's take as well.

Friday, January 29, 2010

"I'm Just A Girl"

Here's the set-up: Leslie from "Parks & Recreation" is giving excuses to the sheriff why she accidentally shot her co-worker Ron in the head during a hunting trip. (SPOILERS): she didn't actually shoot him, but was covering up to protect Aziz, who didn't have a hunting license.

(and for those who can't access Hulu, here's the quote):

"I got that tunnel vision that girls get. I let my emotions get the best of me. I cared too much, I guess. I was thinking with my lady parts. I was walking and it felt icky. I thought there was gonna be chocolate. I don't even remember! I'm wearing a new bra, and it closes in the front, so it popped open and it threw me off. All I wanna do is have babies! I'm just going through a thing right now. I guess when my life is incomplete, I wanna just shoot someone. This would not happen if I had a penis! Bitches be crazy. I'm good at tolerating pain; I'm bad at math, and... I'm stupid."

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Val's CBR Interview

my CBR interview is up --
I'm a little more talkative in this interview than I've been in a while, so hope you enjoy it --

"D'Orazio Double Taps the Punisher"

Thanks Dave for a great interview!

PS, that's a pic of Laurence Campbell's art on top, he makes Frank look really badass in this book --

EDIT: shit, I just realized the interview got some art from the book in it. Looks so cool!

The OS Journal 1/28/10

I've been ill since Monday, hence the lack of postage. But because of the magic that is telecommuting, I've still been working. When you work from home, it's hard to justify taking off work completely because of illness. I mean, can you still sit upright? Then, my friend, you can type out an ad proposal. Please understand, nobody is forcing me to do this. It's just the way things are. But in the midst of all that, my blog unfortunately takes less priority. Also, I lose that blogging "mojo." You know about that mojo, right? It's like when you find story after story to blog about effortlessly, writing your spin, knocking them out – you are on a roll. Whereas this week has been like: Apple tablet, something about toast, Screech from Saved by the Bell writes book about fornication, etc. Just not making the bloggy connections there.

As for my being sick itself, I'm kind of hoping this is my body's way of massively purging toxins from my system. I'm serious, it's like a Sam Raimi movie over here.

(That would be early pre-Spider-Man Raimi, for those of you not familiar with his entire filmography. Though I've lately seen stuff come out of me that looks like that Venom shit.)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Gore-Gore Girls: Female Horror Directors

"It is women who love horror. Gloat over it. Feed on it. Are nourished by it. Shudder and cling and cry out-and come back for more."
--Bela Lugosi

Mary Harron, American Psycho

Katt Shea, The Rage: Carrie 2

Mary Lambert, Pet Semetary

Rachel Talalay, Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare

Kathryn Bigelow, Near Dark

"Here you will see a man's kidney ripped out and eaten, a chair leg pushed through a head via the eyeball, a roomful of men wiped out by the Punisher revolving upside-down from a chandelier and firing machine-guns with both hands, a widow and her wee girl threatened with mayhem, heads sliced off, victims impaled and skewered, and the villain thrown into a machine that crushes glass bottles in much the same way concrete is mixed."
--Roger Ebert on Punisher: War Zone, directed by Lexi Alexander

...I do think though that hollywood is sending a message that women want vampires who sparkle in the sun and girls who can’t make decisions for themselves. But that is just my opinion. I really just fear the onslaught of Chick Flick Horror or as the amazing Rebekah McKendry (one of the only woman who works for Fangoria) refers to it perfectly as: “Lifetime Horror.”
--Hannah Neurotica

Me in Juxtapoz Magazine

I was an obsessive reader of Juxtapoz when I was in college, so to get interviewed by them has been like a dream come true.

"Addressing Issues: An Interview With Valerie D'Orazio"

Friday, January 22, 2010

Ten Trashy Action-Adventure VHS Boxes

There is a streamlined and spare beauty to the Action-Adventure VHS box art of the late 1980s and early 1990s that just gets me

Is it the cheesy explosions in the background? The cheap backgrounds? The big hair? Lorenzo Lamas? I don't know. But this box art had an aesthetic that was all its own. Like the mainstream comic book cover operates to this very day, these images had to immediately grab the viewer in a very crowded playing field and promise adventure, thrills, and sometimes a bit of titillation as well. My only advice, should you actually choose to look some of these films up (and I would imagine a number of them aren't yet available on DVD), is to definitely check out "Tiger Claws" starring Bolo Yeung and 1990s female martial arts sensation Cynthia Rothrock. The Roddy Piper/Billy Blanks team-ups are also quite choice.

/worked at a video rental shop for a couple of years, so some of my affinity for this stuff is probably the result of Stockholm Syndrome.
//would love to write a comic book that featured this aesthetic. I mean, play it totally straight, not being ironically hip, or anything. Just the four-color equivalent of a Wings Hauser movie.
///the "Provoked" box is my personal favorite of this set, as it's the most low-budget & flat. Also, those guns are huge.

box art found here and here

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The OS Journal 1/21/10

This is a segment I've created on the blog, updated in the evening, that serves as the "journal/log" of the site. I've discretely separated it from the stories about Megan Fox & butt flora, allowing those readers who have interest specifically in my egocentric introspective ramblings to easily know what's going on with me. To wit: something for the kids at the back of the class who dig that sort of stuff.

Well, today marks the end of a big stretch of overtime I did for my day job. I'm proud that I did the overtime, but it was a lot of overtime and I probably won't be doing that again. I don't feel I had enough free time to promote my upcoming comics, and I'm feeling a little grumpy about it. On the other hand, I still have a little bit of time before the Diamond order cut-off (Feb 11), so I suppose I can make an extra push.

But also: I think I'm still an unknown quantity to some people and until a book like Punisher MAX: Butterfly is in their hands (
or reviewed, or whatever), people really won't know what to expect. So I'm thinking: a big push when that and Girl Comics #1 comes out on the stand, and then focus on when the next project is solicited.

Honestly, if any of you fine people have insights on how to promote the book to retailers and whatnot, feel free to let me know.

I recently did a big interview with a big website on the upcoming projects, and I let my guard down and was pretty balls-out about
everything. When the interview is posted, it's a must-read. I've been pretty reserved in the press & public lately, but it's all a bit of "oh what the hell" right now. Of course, that's all tempered with "let's not be a total ass and bring shame to everywhere you go." It's a balancing act.

Just saw the cover to my new edition of Memoirs of An Occasional Superheroine, which will be released hopefully within the next couple of weeks. The cover is done by my friend Tiffany Kamerman, and really I
just barked like some sort of strange dolphin/dog hybrid when I saw it. It was so totally *me*. I couldn't believe it. It was wonderful; I can't wait for you to see it. It's like I could stop aging and the picture would age for me. It's spooky-accurate and cool.

So I'm very psyched about that, and am just planning for the future. I've been doing social media/PR for other people for almost three years, now – but you know it's hard to get that all-import
ant objective perspective for one's self. I guess even this blog is sort of like PR, but it just doesn't have that boffo socko promotional quality I see so many talented artists and writers work so well.

Just came back from the bar; I've been trying to "sell" underwear all day at my day job, which is very cool don't get me wrong, but I needed that down-time at the local pub.

Anything else to say tonight? Well, just psyched at the possibility of watching Community & Parks & Recreation on the DVR. Sort of watched it at the bar, but that was not really real.

Tomorrow is a Day Off for me:

Got an article to finish, but in theory this should be a mellow time.

Current picture on my laptop wallpaper:

But I guarantee you this will change.

Slices Of Life

This post about acceptable topics to write about in horror fiction reminded me of a conversation I had with my creative writing teacher when I was in undergrad:

"Valerie, there are certain things that are just too unpleasant to write about. It's just the subject matter, you understand? Can't you just write about things you personally observe about the human experience? You know, just slices of life?"

"But sir, I thought I was writing slices of life."