Category Archives: Comic Books

Buddy Scalera Announces Comic Book School 8 Page Challenge

Buddy Scalera, Editor in Chief and Dean of Students at Comic Book School, has challenged members of the comics community to create 8-page comics for a new anthology to be released at New York Comic Con.

Creators who accept the challenge will be guided through the process of creating a comic—from start to finish—by following a professional project plan and schedule co-created by Comic Book School and After Shock Comics Editor in Chief, Mike Marts.

In addition, they will find support, additional educational resources, and a like-minded community on the forums. The resources are free to anyone who joins the creator community by signing up for the forums at

“Every year, aspiring creators leave our educational panels with so much enthusiasm,” Scalera said. “We wanted to create something that not only allows them to sustain that enthusiasm, but also to build on it and sustain their momentum throughout the year. The 8-Page Challenge helps our community members do this and to achieve their goals to create and publish comics.”

“Meeting Buddy and the rest of this budding community of comics creators at New York Comic Con really motivated me to start new projects,” said Erin Donnalley, a comics creator and professional motion graphics animator. “This challenge gives me clearly defined guidelines I can use to channel my ideas into an end product, something I can produce with confidence. It was just what I needed to kickstart this new creative endeavor.”

Donnalley, Scalera, and Marts collaborated on an editorial schedule to which users can subscribe, so they keep pace with the rest of the community. When they participate, they can follow along with a plan that will get them from concept to creation in time for New York Comic Con.

Comic Book School is planning a panel for this year’s New York Comic Con where it will announce its plans for crowdfunding, publishing, and distributing the anthology, both online and in print. Creators who successfully complete the challenge will also have the opportunity to present their work. The panel will be part of Comic Book School’s annual slate, which includes Creator Connection, Comics Script To Page, and Social Media for Comics Creators.

The 8 Page Challenge is the first initiative for the new forums. The forums, which are housed on the Comic Book School website will be the new home for the Comic Book School creator community throughout the year. They are designed to foster community and collaboration, allowing members to build connections, interact with and support one another, access educational resources, and share news and accomplishments.

“I’ve been participating in Comic Book School panels for many years and I am proud to be the first professional advisor for this innovative educational program for the next wave of creators,” says Marts. “At AfterShock, we’re always looking for new talent, and this gives me the opportunity to see how these creators work together.”

The challenge will be open to writers, editors, pencilers, inkers, colorists, letterers, and cover artists. There is no cost to participate, nor is there any payment for publication. Creators retain the rights to their characters and creations.

Forum members will have direct access to Comic Book School resources, and will receive support, not only from Comic Book School forum members, but also from professional creators within of the Comic Book School network. As with his panels, Buddy will bring in pros with whom he has become friends through his work at Comic Book School, Marvel, and Wizard Magazine.

The forums “maintain Comic Book School’s commitment to quality education and community knowledge exchange,” Scalera said.

Like all of Comic Book School’s resources, including the list of comics publishers’ submission guidelines, newsletter, and blog, the forums will be free of charge.

“We are not trying to sell anything,” Scalera added. “We are just trying to connect and creators and help them keep their momentum going.”

The forums also provide a critical resource for creators during these uncertain times of mandated social isolation. With many conventions being cancelled or postponed, there are fewer opportunities for creators to meet and network, which is essential in a field that depends on collaboration and relationships. The forums help bridge that gap by providing a safe, open, online platform in which these interactions can take place.

“All the people in this new making comics community are supportive and insightful,” Donnalley said. “I enjoy talking to each and every one, and we all help each other stay motivated to make comics and advance our different aspirations.”

Comics creators are encouraged to join the 8-Page Challenge and the forums by signing up for a profile at

For more information, contact Buddy Scalera at 




Lightning Strikes the CW

black-lightning_finalBLACK LIGHTNING First-Look Image

WOW! What a great time to be a true comic book fan! Growing up I had some great shows and cartoons. Live action super hero shows were few and far between compared to today, we had reruns of the classic Batman 66″ TV series, the 77″ Wonder Woman series with the still beautiful Lynda Carter {now playing the president of the USA on Supergirl} Shazam & Isis were our “live action” super heroes along with the occasional syndicated run of the George Reeves “Superman”. Today of course TV & Movies have become geek friendly and people just can’t get enough! Just to name a few Fox has Gotham, The Gifted, Lucifer & Legion HULU has Marvel’s Runaways of course Netflix has Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Defenders and soon the Punisher! The CW is waist deep in the DC universe Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow,The Flash,Supergirl & now Black Lighting! By now it’s no secret that Black Lighting won’t take place in the “Arrow-verse” but that doesn’t mean we won’t see other DC characters from the comics appear in this series, in my opinion this has been a long time coming. I was a fan of the character since I was a kid, seeing him co-star along side Batman multiple times in Brave & the Bold and others in various titles not to mention his own series as well but we never got him in the various seasons of the “Super Friends” shows but instead got a kid friendly version named Black Vulcan. Recently they announced that Chantal Thuy has been cast as Grace Choi, this character first appeared in the 2000 run of “The Outsiders” she was later to be revealed to be descended from the amazons. Needless to say she is a heavy hitter. Not a show regular but CW will say she’ll be a recurring character  on the series.

Even though “Black Lighting” has been around since the 70’s he’s been revamped a few times. His modern origin can be found in the mini series Black Lighting Year One this is also where they get a lot of the premise for this new CW show. His short lived original solo series {12 issues} broke ground at DC to be the first hero of color to have their own series, paving the way…eventually for Cyborg and John Stewart two of DC’s most popular characters. It’s what I would consider essential reading for this character, he also co-starred in Worlds Finest, Detective & JLA and was even offered membership in the league but he turned it down and just flew solo so to speak but years later became a member of the league for a time. A pivotal turning point in the characters life was when he lost his powers when an innocent woman was killed during a gun fight he was involved in. Luckily he decided to keep fighting the good fight even without his powers and was enlisted by Batman to help him save Lucius Fox. That’s when we find out it’s all in his head it was just his guilt over that woman’s death that suppressed his powers but with the aid of Batman gets his powers back. In 1983 when creators Mike W. Barr, Jim Aparo & Alan Davis brought Batman & The Outsiders to life “Black Lighting” became a founding member of the “Outsiders”. As of recent we see him in the New 52 where he was teamed up with the “Blue Devil” which is currently available in TPB and well worth your time. As of now he’s made his appearance in DC’s Rebirth in a new mini series called Black Lighting: Cold Dead Hands a 6 issue mini series that started on November 1st but with his adventures coming to the CW in 2018 can his reemergence on a new team be far off? This isn’t the first time we’ve seen the character on tv he’s been animated quite a few times in DC animated feature films and tv series such as Young Justice, Brave and the Bold, Justice League: Crisis on 2 Earths, Public Enemy’s and more.

So if you want to learn more about Black Lighting here’s some suggested reading:

Black Lighting’s original 1977 solo series

Black Lighting vol 2 1995 solo series

Black Lighting Year 1 {6 issue mini series}

DC Presents vol 3 Black Lighting & Blue Devil

Batman & The Outsiders vol 1

Black Lighting: Cold Dead Hands {2017-2018}