This story has taken me a while to finish, because I really wanted to try something different. I've been looking over the past Wandering Koala Tales (and boy has the catalog been growing!) trying to decide what I liked, what I didn't like, and what direction I want to go. I've tried a lot of different genres--novels, comics, graphic novels, short stories, novellas, and anthologies, and a lot of different media and styles exploring the world of the Silent Wanderer.
One important element of the Wandering Koala when I created him and his world was the flexibility to literally do anything I wanted. And while I've had fun doing that, it's probably been kind of schizophrenic for the reader to follow the story told in so many different formats and style and not even in order. And the publishing schedule has been erratic.
With the launch of the first Wandering Koala Digest, I've finally figured out the format that works for the stories I want to tell that both provides the flexibility for the character and the wide range of tales I want to tell but is still easy enough for the reader to follow so he doesn't get lost. And a bimonthly schedule gives me the time to craft quality tales while still providing a regular dose of Wandering Koala action at predictable times.
With the third Digest I think I've finally figured out the art style that I'll stick with for most, if not all, of the tales. I'll admit it isn't the most polished art I've ever created, but polish isn't what I'm looking for. Wandering Koala was inspired by Boys Adventure stories like Hardy Boys, Pulp Fiction like Doc Savage, and adventure comics like The Phantom that were pumped out at a frantic pace by people who had energy and excitement oozing out their pencils and typewriters. The tales were fast and furious and spoke to something visceral inside the reader instead of merely stimulating the intellect (although they certainly did that with the wide range of topics and knowledge the authors possessed and displayed). This art style is a lot more raw and rough and expressionistic. It's supposed to illustrated the mood as much as the scene (and maybe even a little more).
I'm in love with this first page, and I'm excited to release the whole story in February 2014 so you can enjoy it as well. Be sure to leave me a comment and tell me what you think!